Puffin Books, £2.50, ISBN 0-14-031813-5
Historical Fantasy, 1985
At the Court of King Minos follows Bloodfeud of Altheus and you are strongly advised to start from the first gamebook in this Cretan Chronicles series due to the fact that some items you discovered in the first gamebook will be of use here.
You are Altheus, and after the adventures in the previous gamebook, you have succeeded in reaching the court of King Minos in Crete. You have taken the place of your dead brother Theseus and now, you must navigate the treacherous intrigues of King Minos before braving the labyrinth and confront the Minotaur. And then, you will have to escape Crete with your life intact. Along the way, you may even pick up a girlfriend, Ariadne who is King Minos’s daughter. So off you go, getting the girl and kicking rear ends in the process!
This gamebook is… oh boy, “difficult” is one simple way of putting it. The taking a hint system here can be brutal as the authors delight in penalizing you for the kick of it. The gods are even more volatile here, and you will soon feel as if you’re trying to placate a bunch of big babies. Have fun confronting the Minotaur, he is the culmination of many difficult encounters you have to face here. Meanwhile, there are plenty of ignoble ways you can end the adventure. The odds are stacked against you here, so be prepared to experience plenty of frustration as you play this one.
Still, it has to be said: the whole campaign is still an interesting and memorable one despite the fiendish difficulty. Full of color and creativity in design, this one is a fascinating romp through a Greek melodrama. All things considered, this one could have been a little more fair and painless on the nerves, but there are far worse ways to go. This one is, after all, entertaining despite its many shortcomings.