Although there are some Eamon adventures which downplay
violence, usually combat is an integral component of Eamon adventures. As such,
weapons are important to every adventurer who desires a long life (or at least
to complete the current adventure). In Eamon there are 5 classes of weapons
available - axe, bow, club, spear, and sword. These classes are interpreted
liberally by Eamon authors (Eamonauts) so that a tree trunk may be considered a
club or a flame thrower considered a bow. Weapons run the gamut from the
prosaic sword to the sophisticated laser pistol and everything in between. Most
of these weapons carry generic names, but Eamonauts seem driven to create a few
special weapons with colorful and memorable names. A review of Eamon weapon
names provides an insight into the strange worlds inhabited by Eamonauts.
By a large margin, swords are the choice for special
weapons. Axes and clubs are about equal in a distant second place and are
followed by spears in frequency. Bows are the rarest special weapons with just
two found by my researches - SANDZER and ROCKILLER. When it comes to naming
bows, most authors use the banal MAGIC BOW. Any future authors out there might
consider improving the status of bows in the annals of weaponry.
Since the object of combat is to destroy one's opponent,
it's not surprising that death is a common theme in weapon names. There are the
DEATH AXE, DEATH BLADE, DEATH SCYTHE, WAND OF DEATH, DEATH DREAMER, DEATH
STALKER, DEATHSWORD, and DEATHSEDGE. If these don't satisfy your bloodlust, how
about BLOODFANG, BLOOD DRINKER, or BLOODTHIRST? If you are familiar with the
Greek "nekros" (dead body), you might favor NECROPOLIS, NECROMANCER, or NECRONIS.
Some authors use color to create colorful names. Silver
and white are popular choices, but black is the all-time favorite. On the
"black list" are the BLACK CLEAVER, BLACK SWORD, BLACK DAGGER, BLACK SCIMITAR,
and BLACK AXE. Black is often associated with the underworld, the abode of
demons and devils who might be wielding DEMONSTAR, SOUL CATCHER, HELLFIRE,
HELLSPAWN, DEMONFLAME, or BARROW-BLADE.
The elements lend their powers to many weapons. If things
are getting a little hot for you, maybe it's because your opponent is waving
TROLLSFIRE (a nostalgic favorite), STARFIRE, STARSTRIKER, FLAME TONGUE,
FIREBLADE, or ELYSIA FLAMEWIND. To counteract all this 'fire'power, you could
use ICE, ICESTAR, FROSTBAND, or FREEZIER. If those aren't enough, try
WINDSTRIKER or STORMBRINGER.
Some names graphically describe a weapon's purpose.
Included here might be BITE, MARAUDER, SEEKER, SLASHER, REQUITER, KILLER,
THUDWACKER, VANQUISHER, GNASH THE SWORD, SKULLCLEAVER, HEWER, and HACKENSLASH.
If the original weapon isn't quite right for the job, then an improved version
may be required as in STING and STINGER, SLAYER and DRAGON SLAYER, or THE WRATH
and WRATH OF NGURCT.
Defying classification is an assortment of weapons, some
dredged from literature, some from legend, and some from the fevered imagination
of a demented Eamonaut: ANDERHAUF, ANDURIL, ANGRIST, BEMSBANE, CELSIUS,
COLUMBINE, DRUINVAL, EXCALIBUR, EXETER, FORTITER, GLAMDRING, GLORON, GROND,
GRYMWYR, GUNGNIR, GUTHWINE, HACJAC, IMPERIUM, INVICTUS, JASAR, JASNAR, LEBENSTOD,
MULCIBER, NOTHUNG, ORCRIST, SLISACK, Y'NATHELI, and YRCHOST. Some are truly
odd; you might think twice before readying AXE-COME-LATELY, BRODY'S FOLLY, or
For those of you who aren't authors but wish to have a
weapon of your own devising, two adventures (that I know of) allow you to
acquire a weapon which you then name. In WRENHOLD'S SECRET VIGIL, #121, you are
rewarded with a magic elven bow upon successful completion of your quest. With
your first shot, you name the bow. This adventure is also one of the best
adventures and is highly recommended on those grounds alone. In THE CASTLE
KOPHINOS, #49, the prize is a sword. These weapons are doubly special as symbols
of accomplishment and as the bearers of your personal favorite names.
Since everyone reading this newsletter is an Eamon expert,
then a small challenge is in order. For the following list of a dozen Eamon
weapons, identify the weapon type of each one. (One hint: none of them are bows
- really helpful, huh?)
The awarding of prizes will take place on Aug. 15, so your
entry must reach me by that date.
1. ANDERHAUF 7. GROND
2. BEMSBANE 8.
3. BRODY'S FOLLY 9. OLD TRUSTY
5. DEATH DREAMER 11. THUDWACKER
Editor's note: It seems possible that very few, if any, of
we 'Eamon experts' are going to be able to identify all 12 weapons. So if you
want to enter the contest but haven't gotten them all, by all means do so and
send Pat your best effort. Who knows, your incomplete entry could well be the
best one that he receives! -Tom
(Click here for contest Answers)
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
Weapons Contest Update - by
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 -
2. Bemsbane - axe 8.
Necropolis - club
3. Brodys Folly - sword 9. Old Trusty -
4. Celsius - axe
10. Slisack - sword
5. Death Dreamer - sword 11. Thudwacker - club
6. Fortiter - axe
12. Y'Natheli - spear
Eamon Monster Lore - Part II
Loremaster: Pat Hurst
Another characteristic of an Eamon monster, but not of a
player character (PC), is its courage rating. The courage rating influences the
monsters actions in the event of combat. A rating of 0 means the monster will
run away at the first sign of combat. A rating of 100 means the monster will
never run away from combat. A rating of 200 means that the monster will always
pursue if the PC runs away, which is sometimes necessary for even the most
doughty warrior. With a rating between 0 and 100, a monster may run away if it
takes enough damage. A lower rating increases the likelihood of the monster
fleeing the scene. With a rating between 0 and 200, a monster may or may not
pursue a fleeing PC. A higher rating increases the likelihood of pursuit. Some
of the toughest monsters may also be the ones who will chase you to the ends of
the earth. Good news, huh?
Having worked in a university setting for some time, I must
say that the intellectual community of Eamon leads a much more exciting life
than mine. These guys are constantly dreaming up super weapons of destruction,
ways to warp time and space, or plagues which threaten all life on Eamon. These
assorted mad scientists and absent-minded professors include DRS. CARTER, BROWN,
CRANE, NO, PERCY, FEGG, LESTER, WHITEHEAD, HOO, ONSTIEN, APPLEBAUM, WINSTON, and
MORKIN and PROFESSORS AXOM, MORIARTY, and WORTH. At the head of the pack must
be the CLONEMASTER, star villain of two adventures, who specializes in
assembling body parts. And speaking of body parts, let's take in the All-Star
Body Parts Review: TWO FACE, MOUTH, WORMTONGUE, JAWS, BLOOD MONSTER, BONE
GOLEM, FLESH GOLEM, EYE OF THE DEEP, DAMNED SOULS, BAREFOOT ZOMBIE, TREEBEARD,
SHADOW, WARTHOG, CARDINAL FANG, SKULLCLEAVER, ORCS OF THE WHITE HAND, THE
SCRATCH-NECKED FIEND, NOSE PICTS, and BADBUTT.
To give the enterprising adventurer an exalted status to
which he may aspire, Eamon is heavily populated with royalty. They also provide
opportunities for heroism by being regularly kidnapped or unable to protect
their domains from evil depradations. Some of the ones who appear as monsters
in Eamon adventures include EMPEROR ROGAN; KINGS OTTO, ESCHER, HOLFANE, TUT,
ZIRCON, and DAVID; LORDS CREYN and DEMONWING; LADIES VALENTINE and AMRAT; the
DUKE OF EARL; COUNTS VLADIMIR, MICTLA, and ORLOFF; and the EARL OF CANTOR.
Prince and princesses are most prone to getting into trouble. In the prince
category are CASTILLION, WILLIAM, and ROGAR, as well as the PRINCE OF DARKNESS.
Princesses include LISA, MITZI, IRMA, LEIA, MARI, MARA, and JULENE.
The names of real people often appear in Eamon adventures.
More famous ones include FRANK SINATRA, DEAN MARTIN, JACKIE GLEASON, TOOTS SHOR,
ERNEST and JULIO GALLO, JESSE JAMES, ADOLF HITLER, JOSEPH STALIN, SAMUEL ADAMS,
MARGARET THATCHER, ANDREW CARNEGIE, MAO TSETUNG, HENRY VIII, MARY QUEEN OF
SCOTS, GENE SISKEL, ROGER EBERT, ELIZABETH RAY, and MADONNA. For the
intellectual crowd there are BLAISE PASCAL and KIERKEGAARD. For the less
intellectual crowd there are ROWDY RODDY PIPER and the IRON SHIEK. And for
those who think they have been missing something, there are AMELIA EARHART,
JIMMY HOFFA, and the LINDBERGH BABY. The one which I find particularly
interesting in this category is VICTOR MATURE. Of all the movie actors who have
come and gone, why did the author of BLOOD FEUD, #94, choose Victor Mature to
feature in his adventure?
I'll close out the monster compendium with some fun
categories. The first is THE category, as in ATTILA THE HUN. Sometimes this
nomenclature is used to reveal what the individual is, such as BOB THE WANDERER,
BILL THE CAT, MIKEY THE SKUNK, FRANK THE FISHERMAN, TOM THE SHOEMAN, TURK THE
THIEF, MARV THE DWARF, HARRIET THE HAG, SAM THE BARTENDER, and CONAN THE
LIBRARIAN. Sometimes the name is descriptive of the individual, as in SIMON THE
SIMPLE, URBAR THE TIMID, GURROQ THE LAME, ANCALAGON THE BLACK, ULIK THE
INVINCIBLE, VOLSTAGG THE OBESE, and DURIN THE DEATHLESS. Sometimes I don't know
what the name means, as in HAROLD THE DUP and HARRY THE IT.
Another fun category includes the punny names. There are
lot of entries in this arena as Eamonauts seem especially prone to this disease,
and I am sure that I miss plenty of them. Sam Ruby, a prolific Eamonaut, was
given to use the term neucromancer in referring to mages in his adventures. I
thought this was a misspelling until it was explained to me as a play on the
initials on the National Eamon Users Club. Anyway, here are a few of the ones
that I did recognize: SLEE Z, KING KEY, VULL GAR, TOOTH PICTS, GRAB GRASS, BUD
WEISER, DARRK NESS, FLEETUS LE FEETE, BRUISE LEE, SIR RENDER, and LORD HELPUS.
I think all of the math classes I've had over the years have led to my top pick,
HORATIO OF PI.
Finally, there are the names which are too weird to
categorize. These include NINJA GRANDMOTHER, PAIR OF PANTS, MISTER DEFORMITY,
?, CLOSET ANXIETY, ASDFGHJKL, YOURSELF, and YOUR REFLECTION. If these aren't
strange enough, try SOMETHING, A THING, A THING OR TWO, ONE THING OR ANOTHER,
AND OF ALL THINGS, and NOTHING. Last but not least, no monster list would be
complete without that star of every 'B' monster movie ever made - IGOR. Just
remember for future reference, if your favorite character is killed by one of
these dudes, I tried to warn you.
While we are on the subject of monsters, how about another
contest? Do you remember the movie, The Magnificent Seven? Chris (Yul Brynner)
found six gunmen to accompany him to protect a small Mexican village. Here's
your chance to do the same thing. From the following list of thirty monsters,
pick the best party of six to accompany you on an adventure. A party's quality
will be determined by summing the ratings of the six monsters you choose. A
monster's rating is the product of its friendliness and its hardiness.
Your choices are:
In this article I shall gather together some of the more
memorable 'lines', if you will, from the Eamon adventures I have played.
Most memorable lines are humorous, or at least meant to be
so. Insulting the player is popular:
"I hope you can fight better than you look!"
-Sir Orabon, "The School of Death" #65
Especially interesting are the following insults, which
share a common pattern, though they were written by different authors at
"Your mother was a pig and your father smells of
-Drow Elf, "Wrenhold's Secret Vigil" #121
"Your mother was a hunster and your father smells
-French Knight, "The Quest for the Holy
"Monty Python and the Holy
The most abusive passage that I've ever encountered is a
death trap that gives the player no chance whatsoever of a quiet death:
"You dumb, stupid jerk! You just fell down the
s--t hole! The walls are smooth, the sewage
deep, and you drown! You jerk! You're dead!"
-"Temple of Ngurct" #23
After being insulted so, one would be glad to encounter a
friend who ATTACKs enemies by insulting them:
"(victim) ish der rotten shtinker!"
-Dolf da Dolphin, "The Lair of Mr. Ed" #158
If poor diction isn't enough, imagine meeting Jeff Harris,
who has a really obnoxious trait:
"Jeff Harris smiles and squeals like a pig!"
-"The Caves of Hollow Mountain" #87
Monsters not only say things, but also can be rather
interesting people in the first place:
"You see a golden rug on the floor."
-desc. of Pekingese, "Death's Gateway " #34
"...his mind a furnace of hate and sadism, molten
earwax dribbles down the side of his head."
-desc. of Fugu Otoko, "The Bridge of
Of course, dungeons and caverns have their delinquent
youth, human or otherwise, who would scrawl upon walls:
"Z Z Top is tops."
-"The Dungeon of Doom" #117
"We loaded up the cannon,
it gave a mighty blast,
Lord Collingwood was running,
so it caught him in the ---."
Eamon even has a few illiterate troll poets, such as the
"My name is Jack and I'm gonna put you in a
-Jack the troll, "Mines of Moria" #108
Here are a few that break the laws of time and space and
appear in the world of Eamon:
"It's Miller time!"
-sign, "The Beermeister's Brewery" #142
"Mars is looking for a few good men. Be all that
you can be..."
-Martian Warrior, "The Sands of Mars" #163
And here are two final funny ones that defy classification:
"The Castle of Doom is run by two kindly old
ladies who wish to give valiant adventurers a
bit of excitement."
-introduction, "The Castle of Doom" #5
"You have discovered my greatest treasure, a good
-Henri LeMarque, "Buccaneer!" #145
Now we come to the non-funny variety. These are often
well-worded threats, but are sometimes very well worded passages that have a
certain ring to them:
"Say good-bye to all this and hello to oblivion!"
-Black Warrior, "Zyphur River Adventure" #4
"Mjollnir the Mighty, slayer of miscreants, come
to your Master, Thor Odinsson!"
-Thor, "Journey to Jotunheim" #148
"By the whim of whatever gods or spirits that
control your destiny, you've been chosen to
enter...The Shopping Mall."
-introduction, "The Shopping Mall" #88
Note- this last might as well have been in with the
humorous ones. This was the entire introduction to the adventure, which many
consider the worst Eamon ever. But the intro is pretty neat, isn't it?
This brings us to the end, where I must list what I
personally feel is the best overall quote of all time. After months of
tormented pondering, I have selected the following: (drum roll, please!)
"There are several computers here. Each is
running a different Eamon adventure. (They can't
be all bad!)"
-Nazi officers' game room, "Camp Eamon" #106
CONTEST: There isn't one. Quit your whining and read the
Contest Update by Pat Hurst
Due to the underwhelming response, there is no third place
winner in the last contest. The previous contest attracted three entries and
now we're down to just two. I think my own contest fever has gone into
First place is again awarded to Nathan Segerlind with a
score of 10,415 for his team of NINJA GRANDMOTHER, SHAGG, JACKIE GLEASON, TOOTS
SHOR, BOB THE WANDERER, and BLAISE PASCAL. Nathan receives no prize, however,
because he submitted an earlier entry with joke names to bamboozle me. Ah!
Revenge is sweet!
Second place goes to our esteemed editor, Tom Zuchowski,
with a score of 7400 for his team of HARRY 'SNAPPER' ORGANS, HARRY THE IT, MIKEY
THE SKUNK, MISTER SNAGGLEDY, NINJA GRANDMOTHER, and ROWDY RODDY PIPER. (That
last one killed you, Tom, as he is unfriendly.) Tom swore that he didn't write
a program to search the files for the best team, and I have to believe him with
a score like that. At any rate, Tom still finished last again so he receives no
prize either. The unawarded prizes are really building up; I'd have a yard sale
except that it's 10 degrees below zero outside.
The Magnificent Seven are:
VOLSTAGG THE OBESE
BOB THE WANDERER
HARRY 'SNAPPER' ORGANS
HAROLD THE DUP
and your character, of course!
by Tom Zuchowski
The Main Hall has been a fairly popular program to expand
and modify. It is not clear why this is so, since a majority of Eamon
Adventurers only use it as a place to store their character between forays and
as a means to launch each new adventure. In fact, there is a program on the EAG
Utility disk named FRESH SAM which allows you to launch and play an adventure
without using the Master disk at all, and judging by my mail this program is a
fairly popular time saver. Perhaps the Main Hall is often modified because it
is fun to play with it, and it is a much easier thing to do than to write an
actual Eamon adventure. Even so, some of the modified Main Halls show a lot of
work and effort.
The Main Halls can be divided into two groups: those which
can currently be obtained through public-domain sellers, and those which
cannot. First, let's discuss the ones which are available:
1) EAG MAIN HALL & BEGINNERS CAVE by Don Brown. Widely
available from public-domain sellers (just about everyone sells it or one like
it), this is the original Main Hall with a simple armorer, magician, and banker.
2) GRAPHICS MAIN HALL by Rick Volberding. Also widely
available, this Main Hall uses hi-res graphics in the 'overhead' mode, similar
to the old Epyx adventures such as 'Temple of Apshai', but of better quality.
The Main Hall itself is much like the basic Main Hall above, but it ajoins a
'village' where you can have weapons made to order, visit a witch who can
enhance your attributes, gamble in a casino, a spellcaster who can enhance your
spell abilities, or practice arenas where your weapon or armor expertise can be
improved. There is something special in the center of each screen that can be
3) EXPANDED MASTER (also known as EAMON MASTER 2) by John
Heng & John Nelson. This is a menu-driven disk that includes limited character
editing among its start-up options. The armorer handles custom weapons and you
can special-order any weapon you want, if you have the money! It has a
weapons-training center for boosting weapon expertise. (Aspen's
4) ARMS SCHOOL by Bruce Miller. Uses lower-case text.
This is a program that is meant to be merged onto the Main Hall (it includes
instructions for doing so). It has enhancement programs for Hardiness, Agility,
Charisma, and weapon abilities. This program uses random numbers; you never
know what enhancement you might get. You can fail the course or even get
killed, depending on what the Random Number Generator hands you. Each course is
extremely expensive. I found this to be a one-time wonder: interesting to do
for 15 minutes just to see what comes up, but not worth going back to. (Aspen's
5) GUILDHALL modifications by Ron Maleika. This is 3A's
adaptation of the regular Main Hall, except that the 'new character'
instructions have been added as a 'Visit to the Library' option. The most
noticeable modifications were several name changes. It includes a 'Visit Annex'
option (see 6 & 7 below).
6) ANNEX 1 by Mike Greifenkamp. There is evidence that
John Nelson developed the 'Annex' as an option that enables anyone to expand the
Main Hall any way they want. Mike wrote these particular additionss. They
include a Weapons Training School, an Attribute Shop where you can have your
attributes boosted, and Free Information about the shops. The disk exits back
to the Guildhall, and is far from being full.
7) ANNEX 2 Has a shop for unusual weapons that is the
same as the 'unusual weapons' option on the Expanded Main Hall. This disk is
This concludes the various Main Halls that I am aware of
that are currently available through public-domain sellers. Next, I will list
some stuff that people have sent me to look at and discuss that have never been
widely available. If you are interested in obtaining any of this, write and
we'll work something out. Perhaps one of the public-domain sellers might be
interested in carrying them.
8) RAMDISK EAMON Ted Swartz sent me this to look at. It
runs an Eamon adventure from a Saturn-compatible ramcard. I found that it
loaded at best 20% faster than a regular disk-based Eamon, because most of the
time savings were eaten up by the time spent configuring the system and
transferring the disk contents to the ramdisk. Once loaded, it wasn't
noticeably faster than disk-based Eamon. Regular Eamon can read the disk and
print it to the screen faster than you can read it, so any speed enhancement in
this area goes unnoticed. The speed problems in Eamon have always been in the
area of inefficient programming, which is not enhanced by the ramdisk.
9) EXPANDED MASTER by Scott Everts. (This disk may be
available from Shever Software-I'm not sure.) It is like the original Master,
with these additions: Training Center for weapons; shops where you can raise
your attributes or spell abilities for cash, a Casino where you can bet on
roulette, blackjack, wrestling, or play the slots; and of course a Special
Weapons Shop where you can buy & sell magic weapons.
10) MONSTER BATTLE DISK This disk used to be sold by the
NEUC as the Utilities III disk, and may still be sold by them and others-I'm not
sure. It consists of a single program that can load in any monster from any
Eamon and then pit them against one another in an arena. I never saw any use
for this program, since (on the average) the stronger monster will win more
battles, but if you like to watch the antics of the insidious Random Number
Generator, you might enjoy it.
11) EAMON II by John Nelson, John Heng, & Bob Davis.
This disk marks the beginnings of John's quest for a 'super-Eamon' that
culminated in his aborted Apple-based 'KnightQuest' system. It shows many of
the features and commands of the later-to-come version 6 Eamon, but lacks the
commands PUT & FREE. It has 4 new spells: CHARM, FEAR, BLINK, & SLEEP. It
accommodates 5 personal weapons instead of the usual 4 of the Main Hall. It has
a total of 7 artifact types, including Shield, Healing, Light, & Shovel. There
are several new monster fields: Low Room, High Room, #Attacks, Greed, Hate, and
Wanderlust. It allows the adventurer to find 'friends' and take them along on
adventures. There are 4 professions: Thief, Fighter, Cleric, & Magician.
Alignments run from Lawful Very Good to Chaotic Evil. It has an Intelligence
attribute. It runs VERY slowly and is an incredible memory hog. This situation
got worse as it grew into 'KnightQuest', and the next thing you know John got
himself an IBM-PC with compiled Basic & 640K of memory.
12) PRODOS EAMON MASTER by Dr. Wm. H. Trent. A
plain-vanilla adaptation of the regular Master into Prodos. I don't believe Dr.
Trent ever settled on a protocol for launching adventures.
13) PRODOS EAMON MASTER by Tom Phelps. Another plain
adaptation of the Main Hall, but with some important enhancements to the
adventures themselves. It used sequential files and incorporated
text-compression for a dramatic decrease in disk file size. As far as I know,
the project never got as far as converting and testing a significant number of
existing Eamon adventures.
13) EAMON PRO by Ryan Page. This is NOT Prodos-based
Eamon. It is basically a supercharged, multi-disk version of the Expanded
Master that requires 80-columns and lower-case, and has a couple of nifty
double-hi-res screens. It allows the player to keep as many as nine weapons and
has a lot of other enhancements, such as a 'frequent character' option that
allows you to jump right to an adventure. It has a lot of other stuff, such as
a general store, but there were compatibility problems with my Videx card and I
got tired of modifying programs before I got through it all. This system is not
compatible with regular Eamon, although it is capable of launching and returning
from a regular Eamon adventure. The reverse is not true: a regular Main Hall
cannot launch an Eamon Pro adventure. I dunno where Ryan is going with this; I
recommended to him that he either require 128K or else do a lot of downward-compatiblity
And that sums it up. I don't doubt that there are other
Main Halls out there somewhere, and some of the above may be available though I
am unaware of it (the public-domain sellers don't keep me especially up-to-date
on what they're selling). I hope you enjoyed it. And if you are considering
your own Main Hall enhancements, you need to ask yourself if there is a need
that is not being met by the standard Master with its character editor, or by
the Graphics Main Hall with its extra shops. I settled on these two disks to
carry in the EAG library because one or the other will appeal to the two basic
types of Eamonaut: the type that just wants to go on adventures, and the type
that cares a great deal about building up his character.
A Few Observations about Fashions in
by Nathan Segerlind
Eamon, like any other hobby with considerably devoted
followers, is prone to fads and trends.
The first fad originated in the bowels of that Grand Daddy
of all Eamon adventures, the "Beginners Cave". The MIMIC was a very popular
monster in many old John Nelson and Don Brown Eamons. From chests to doors to
even a sword in a stone, mimics have surprised adventurers. This fad continues
today in some remote areas of Eamon gaming.
In the early days, Eamon used the concept of the
"In-and-Out-in-a-half-hour" "Loot & Kill" scenario. This popular concept of
Slash'n'hacking with minimal designer work still lives on today. Typical of
this timeless genre is the 30-room, 6-monster, guarded-treasure-vault pattern.
Later people got more advanced and started to put in
quests, and they had to come up with good titles. What could be easier than
_____Quest? Insert the basic concept of your adventure and you got a title!
Examples are SwordQuest, LifeQuest, FutureQuest, etc.
Another long-running fad was the idea of an all powerful
wizard having a "life orb" that kept him going. Of course, all benevolent magi
have an unfortunate habit of losing their orb or having it stolen, requiring the
services of Adventurers to get it back. This concept was popularized by "The
Orb of Polaris", "Rhadshur Warrior", "Wrenhold's Secret Vigil", "Orb of my
Life", and others. Nobody knows where this trend came from, but a hand points
at the godfather of modern Eamon, John Nelson. (Ed. note: actually, the "orb"
thing arose from a contest that the NEUC ran many years ago. The contest
bombed, but we did get some nice adventures from it. -TomZ)
For a while it seemed like stealing from J.R.R. Tolkein's
"Lord of the Rings" trilogy was the thing to do. Sam Ruby started it with "The
Mines of Moria", and Tom Zuchowski soon joined in with "Thror's Ring" and
"Assault on Dolni Keep". The Eamons using Middle Earth for the scenario and
plot are too many to list.
Now, my fashion-minded Eamonauts, what is today's greatest
rage in adventure designing? Why, it's the use of active companions!
Don't you think that normal companions are rather dull,
just following you around, smiling and fighting bad guys? Well, not any more!
Today, companions can be their own person. Version 7.0 alone has added much
interaction; you can heal, inventory, and do other neat things with your
But what about monsters carrying extra weapons? No
adventurer would carry just one weapon! Well, the carrying of extra weapons
would be no hard thing. Just put some weapons in the monster's possession and
modify the code at 7400 so that they will ready their own weapons before they
pick up stuff just laying around. "Assault on Dolni Keep" does this. Also, in
version 7.0 a monster knows which weapon is "his" and will pick up the weapon
that he dropped in combat just like you would.
Talkative companions are becoming more popular. Most
Eamons with talking companions use Effects or a special text file to print out
companions' comments when appropriate. Sometimes companions will do things as
well as talk. Talking and actions are controlled by complicated sets of special
flags and other checks and are very difficult to get right.
For information on active companions, check these
adventures: "Thror's Ring", "Assault on Dolni Keep", "Operation Endgame", and "Ragnarok
Well, that's all I have on Eamon trends. There may be more
but I haven't played every Eamon in existence. I'm just hoping to stir some
interest in you people. I can be contacted at the address in this issue's