Request for Assistance: Vintage Mini Game Edition

  • by Gitabushi

One story my children have gotten tired of hearing about is how I came in 2nd at a D&D convention adventure tournament.

Here’s the story, mainly to fill up space before I get to the Request for Assistance.

In the early 80s (1983 or 1984), Billings had a Dungeons and Dragons convention. There’s a minor story about how a freak snowstorm killed attendance, and to pay off all the obligations they had an auction that included Katherine Kurtz putting winning bidders into one of her Deryni short stories, but that had no impact on my part of the story.

I and my friends signed up for any number of activities.  One I chose to sign up for was a Dungeons and Dragons adventure.

Arriving at the session, the Dungeon Master (DM) asked us all what type of characters we wanted to play.  I had recently grown interested in Illusionists, which had been (unfairly) ignored in our own local sessions, so he handed me a Fighter/Illusionist.

The mission was to infiltrate a stronghold and defeat an evil Priestess/Mage.

In the first battle with an outpost sentry team, the main bad guy fell into the water.  Since I knew that there was no mechanism in D&D (at that time, at least) for hits to knock people back, I asked if he fell into the water, or jumped.  The DM shrugged and said he fell. So I told everyone the bad guy might regenerate in water, and thus to keep an eye on him as we edged past.

Safely past, I told the DM I was doing a “Change Self” spell (an extremely low level spell that merely alters your appearance with an illusion…you can’t look like a dragon, all you can do is disguise yourself slightly) to make myself look like the guy who “fell” into the water.

When we reached the next sentry team (a much more powerful team this time), I told them I had charmed and captured these invaders and needed to take them to the Priestess for her orders.

The sentry leader shrugged and let us go on.

Then we were in her presence, and attacked.  She took a good amount of damage, then changed shape (healing damage) to fly off.  We never got close to her again.

Fun session.

About 2 weeks later I came home and there was a package on the table.  In it were two mini-strategy games.  One was a dungeon crawl where a few teams raced to get to the center for some reason, encountering monsters and finding treasures and weapons on the way. The other was a space game I hardly remember at all.

I was puzzled, so I wrote a letter to the sender.  A week later I got a reply back: My actions helped us avoid a major battle and get closer to defeating the Priestess than any other team.  As a result, I scored 2nd highest overall and this was my prize.

I hadn’t even realized there was scoring and prizes. I was just intending to adventure with new people and a new DM.

So here’s the deal: I lost both games at some point in life.  I can’t even remember when.  I solo-played the dungeon game a few times, and would really like to find it and play it with friends now.  All I remember is that the objective was to reach the center, and it was a race against the other teams.  I think the idea was that reaching the center gave you control of the castle and special powers, and one of the teams was a Prince who should have been the rightful heir, but wasn’t necessarily a protagonist.  And I might have some of the details wrong, so don’t depend on that.

How would I find the name of this game so I can search out a downloadable copy, or search out a rare existing copy?

The science fiction game was something similar to “Revolt on Antares,” which was a science fiction game my friend owned, but which I have subsequently purchased, but never played since buying as an adult.



Valkenburg Castle

UPDATE II: The other game was The Warriors of Batak.  Amazing how you think you recognize another cover art, but aren’t sure…then when you see the right one, all the memories come back in a rush.


5 thoughts on “Request for Assistance: Vintage Mini Game Edition

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