Eamon Adventurer's Guild Newsletter/September 1988

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◄ June 1988 Eamon Adventurer's Guild Newsletter December 1988 ►
September 1988
Provided by Eamon Adventurer's Guild Online.  Original at http://eamonag.org/newsletters/EAG8809.TXT.
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The Eamon Adventurer's Guild
September 1988

Editorial

by Tom Zuchowski

Well, the EAG seems to be off and running. Membership is gaining steadily. A couple of our affiliated Public-Domain houses will be coming out with new catalogs soon, and they promise to give us a plug in their catalogs. One of the things that got the NEUC really rolling was the plug they got from 3A 'way back when,' so we are very hopeful that membership inquiries will pick up considerably once these new catalogs are out.

I have seen some enthusiasm for upgrading Eamon to take advantage of the //gs and ProDos environment. I am not really qualified to judge the desirability of using Prodos, nor am I very familiar with the //gs, but, with the exception of maybe 6 Eamons from 3 authors, Eamon easily fits in the 36K free memory of the II-//e-//c family, and the typical Eamon has perhaps 40 free disk sectors. Of the 3 above authors, one has a //c, and the other two have II+’s, and they all managed without undue hardship. Of the ACTIVE Eamon authors that I am aware of, one got a Mac, one got an Amiga (they kept their IIs!), and the others have no plans to buy //gs’s.

There seems to be a widely held impression that the common Eamon OUT OF MEMORY crash is a memory problem. This is not the least bit true; this error is a stack overflow problem resulting from the fact that Eamon was laid out years before proper programming practices were widely understood. The 6.2DDD goes a long way towards fixing this problem, and runs 3 or 4 times faster than older Eamons. I am presently about 3/4 finished with a version 7.0 that will be 10-15% smaller and perhaps 3 times faster than the 6.2. This 7.0DDD will support group monsters, an enhanced command set, a multi-disk protocol, accurate line counting, 200 'real' artifacts (besides dead monsters), a 'fast-start' feature, have dozens of minor improvements, and should handle any task in 1 or 2 seconds.

Maybe a compiled program will still be faster overall, but if either program can print and scroll faster than you can read, who cares?

Compiled programs can be bears to debug, and every Eamon author has been appalled by the effort required to debug a new Eamon. Beyond that, a large majority of our members do not now and may never own a //gs. Therefore, given the fact that Eamon presently has enough memory and disk space, what do we gain by cutting these people off? I own a II+, and would really like to hear what the //gs will enable Eamon authors to do THAT SOMEONE ACTUALLY WANTS TO DO but can't do now. Let me know. I'd appreciate the input.

Anyway, the 7.0DDD should be finished by mid-October. Having a vested interest in keeping Eamon on a II+ with Dos 3.3, I am making this available to anyone for one dollar. Send me a buck, and I will send you the 7.0DDD and a demo adventure. I think that you will see that there is life in the old girl yet!

CHEAP DISKS: Several people have mentioned the high cost of buying diskettes to ship around the country. I buy my diskettes for 27 cents each from MEI/Micro Center, 1100 Steelwood Road, Columbus, OH 43212-9972 Phone:1(800)634-3478. You must buy in bulk in multiples of 100, and larger quantities than 100 get even better prices. They have hub rings. I have been using them for years, and have never had a bad one. At these prices, the most expensive part of shipping disks is the postage! I currently have an excess stock of disks, and will sell them in lots of 20 for $10 (postage included). But honestly, you would be much better off to spend 3 times the money to get 5 times the disks from MEI. It may seem like a lifetime supply, and may well be so, but with this many diskettes you tend to keep more backups (a VERY good habit!!). I go through maybe 40 a year in non-EAG computing, mainly by mailing them away to someone.

Also for the budget-minded: computer disks are eligible for 'book rate' from the post office, if you don't care how long delivery takes.

EXPIRATION DATES: Those of you who are transfer members from the NEUC are probably wondering when your subscriptions run out. Look at your address on this newsletter. The date following your name is the date of the last issue that you will be getting from us. Of course we hope that you all will renew when it comes time!


EAMON ADVENTURER'S GUILD c/o Thomas Zuchowski

Membership/subscription fee: $9.00 per year. The Eamon Adventurer's Guild is published four times per year in Mar., Jun., Sep., and Dec. Make your check payable to Thomas Zuchowski, and please put EAG on your check's "for" line.


We are always looking for new material! If you would like to publish your own letter or article in the Adventurer's Log, feel free to write one and send it in. If you would like to add your own Eamon adventure to the list, send it on a disk to the above address. It will be assigned the next adventure number, and tested for bugs and other problems before release. If requested, an informal critique will be returned to the author along with the bug corrections, from more than one reviewer if it seems necessary.

New Adventures

156 The Lake by Nathan Segerlind
157 The Pathetic Hideout of Mr. R. by Nathan Segerlind
158 The Lair of Mr. Ed by Nathan Segerlind
159 The Bridge of Catzad-Dum by Nathan Segerlind
154 Monty Python & the Holy Grail by Nathan Segerlind
155 Operation Endgame by Sam Ruby

In The Lake, you investigate a large lake in a dark land called Death. Flying about on your Magic Carpet, you seek Fred's Island, where you will attempt to slay a dragon and steal his treasure hoard.

In The Pathetic Hideout of Mr. R., you undertake to infiltrate the fortress of the infamous Mr. Roessler, Nathan's computer club moderator. Your mission is to blow it up. This adventure is fun but unforgiving.

The Lair of Mr. Ed is reviewed in this issue. That evil talking horse is up to his old tricks!

The Bridge of Catzad-Dum is an adaptation of the Samurai Cat comic book found in book stores. This is a straight search-and-destroy mission in which the object is to avenge the death of your master.

Monty Python & the Holy Grail is a well done adaptation of the movie that also throws in several other famous Python skits.

Operation Endgame uses a modern setting & weapons. Your mission is to penetrate the enemy's base with your team and destroy their nuclear missile. The makeup & character of your team resembles that of the movie Predator. This is a 3-disk adventure, and is absolutely outstanding, perhaps Sam's best.

(At the time of this writing, 159 & 160 are in final test, and may not be available until around Oct 15)

Eamon Lore

Eamon Monster Lore - Part I

Loremaster: Pat Hurst

In the last Eamon installment I detailed the weaponry of Eamon. This time let's examine those who employ the weapons—Eamon monsters. As in other role-playing games, the term 'monster' refers to any independently active object. This covers humans, humanoid fantasy creatures (orcs, trolls, and giants are prevalent), plants (Venus flytrap, for example), animals (snakes, spiders, and rats run wild), fantasy animals (dragons are always popular), mechanical devices (robots, tanks, planes), the undead, supernatural or demonic creatures, deities, and then there are the truly strange ones. Since there are many more named monsters than weapons, the list will conclude in the next issue of the newsletter.

Monsters aren't defined in exactly the same way as player characters (PC's). One difference is that monsters have a friendliness rating; PC's have a charisma rating instead. A monster's friendliness is very important to the PC since it is a major determinant of the monster's reaction to the PC. If the monster's friendliness rating is 0, then the monster will always be an enemy of the PC. If the monster's rating is 100, then the monster will always be a friend of the PC. If the monster's rating is between 0 and 100, then the monster may be an enemy, a friend, or neutral depending upon its friendliness rating, the PC's charisma, and a random element. A higher rating increases the probability that the monster will be a friend. A lower rating increases the probability that the monster will be an enemy. Thus, in the following lists, there are good guys, bad guys, and some who just don't care about the PC.

The Eamon library encompasses several genres in naming monsters. These will be noted but I will try to avoid listing the individual names since they should already be familiar to you in most cases. From mythology come adventures treating Norse myth, Greek myth, and Arthurian legend. From fantasy literature come adventures treating the Cthulhu mythos and the worlds of Tolkein and Lewis Carroll. Television is the source for adventures about Cheers, the Tonight Show, Monty Python's Flying Circus, and Star Trek. Movies motivated adventures with James Bond and the Star Wars group. Comic book heroes appear in some adventures while another is a tour through history. For the sots among you, there is even one adventure that covers all your favorite brews.

For individual names of monsters, dragons provide an impressive array. There are RED, WHITE, BLUE, GREEN, GOLD, GOLDEN, BLACK, PINK, COPPER, SILVER, and GREY. The dragon may be SMALL, NASTY, or an OLD FEMALE (sounds bad to me, I think I had a neighbor like that once). A particular type might be the KOMODO, SEA, or ORIENTAL. You may run into a DRAGON TURTLE or a DRAGONFLY. Even PUFF THE MAGIC DRAGON makes an appearance as well as his counterpart, PUFF THE MEAN DRAGON.

Giants include the regular humanoid types as well as numerous giant versions of normal animals. In the humanoid class are CLOUD, STORM, STONE, FIRE, ICE, FROST, CAVE, HILL, and EARTH giants. Giant animals that crop up include LIZARD, CRAYFISH, SQUID, SNAKE, AMOEBA, STALL BUG, RAT, PENGUIN, SPIDER, BAT, BOA, RATTLER, COBRA, MOLE, PIKE, MOTH, CENTIPEDE, BLACK SPIDER, CRAB, WORM, FIRE- WORM, TURTLE, SNAPPING TURTLE, TICK, TOAD, and MAGGOT. Now, who says Eamonauts like to exaggerate? There is one called a SEMI-GIANT; I guess the author couldn't decide whether the situation warranted the real thing.

Evil religious cults make wonderful foes for any adventurer. It's no surprise to find a CULTIST, DISCIPLE, BROTHER, SHAMAN, TEMPLAR, CURE, PRIOR, MONK, CARDINAL, WORSHIPER, EVIL WORSHIPER, WITCH DOCTOR, GURU, CHAPLAIN, PROPHET, REVEREND, or AYATOLLAH. The priest category alone contains VOLCANO, BLIND, HIGH, GOBLIN, RED ROBED, BLACK ROBED, DARK, and OLD ones. Often these guys conjure up undead spirits or demons to assist their nefarious plans. ZOMBIES and SKELETONS are a dime a dozen, but you haven't lived until you've tangled with the likes of NGURCT or VAPRAK. Then again, you may not live after you've tangled with them either.

Evil beings are always interested in killing the PC so the killer monster is popular. Besides THE KILLER, these include the KILLER SCORPION, PARAKEET, SHEEP, TREE, BEES, LIZARD, WOODCHUCK, HAMSTER, BUNNY, and SEAL. In opposing these denizens of death, you might get some help from the Eamon armed forces. In rank order we have GENERALS KIEF, KRALZ, and LARD; ADMIRAL PERRY; COLONELS TRANG and BLACK; COMMANDER EKLP; MAJOR KATANG; CAPTAINS BLOOD, TICK, TUCKER, HAROLD, and HOOK; LIEUTENANTS SLADE and DETH; SERGEANTS O'NEILL, HAWK, and FRIDAY; and CORPORAL RIKI. Please note that I said you might get some help; I can't guarantee that everyone here will like you. (continued next issue)

Weapons Contest Update

by Pat Hurst

The Eamon Weapon Contest closed on August 15. Tons of entries have been checked and tabulated by the noted firm of chartered accountants, Wrenhold, Trezore, & Molinar. The results were hermetically sealed in a mayonnaise jar kept on Moleman's front porch since noon today. NO one knows the results, but I, in my borderline mystical way, shall reveal the winners, without ever having seen the results. The winners:

1st place - Dan Cross, author of #146, The House of Horrors, scored 11 out of 12. His prize will be awarded after he apologizes for accusing me of including a phony weapon, Fortiter. Dan needs to check my adventure #145, Buccaneer!, side B, to expand his horizons. His requested prize is another contest, so look for a 'monstrous' one in the near future.

2nd place - Nate Segerlind, author of #152-3 & 156-160, scored 7 out of 12 and improved to 8 after finding Fortiter in the Eamon Gazetteer which I sent him. He also admitted to playing the percentages by guessing 'sword' on ones he didn't know. Oh, you scamp! His requested prize of #147 is on the way.

3rd place - Tom Zuchowski, esteemed editor, author of #114, 124, 148, & 150, and winner of an American Library Association 'Reading is Fundamental' award, scored 0 out of 12 and finished third by default since there weren't any other entries. John Nelson, Eamon godfather, almost nosed out Tom by just thinking about entering, but in the interests of maintaining my integrity (okay, stop that laughing out there), I decided to stick to the rules and disqualify John's hypothetical 12 out of 12. Tom wrote a short program to search adventure artifact files for the 12 weapons, but he recorded the adventure number instead of the weapon type. Despite finishing third, Tom will not receive a prize because he also finished last.

The correct answers are:

1. Anderhauf - sword 7. Grond - club
2. Bemsbane - axe 8. Necropolis - club
3. Brodys Folly - sword 9. Old Trusty - sword
4. Celsius - axe 10. Slisack - sword
5. Death Dreamer - sword 11. Thudwacker - club
6. Fortiter - axe 12. Y'Natheli - spear