The Citadel of Chaos

Adapted from a book by Steve Jackson



The lawful good-folk of the Vale of Willow have lived for some eight years in awe and fear of the demi-sorcerer Balthus Dire. In awe — since his power truly awesome — and in fear ever since word leaked from his domain that his ambitious plans of conquest were to commence with the Vale itself.

A faithful half-elf sent on a spying mission to the Black Tower came galloping back to the Vale three days ago with a frantic warning. From within the caverns of Craggen Rock, Balthus Dire had recruited an army of Chaotics and was preparing them to attack the Vale within the week.

The good King Salamon was a man of action. Messengers were sent throughout the Vale that day to prepare defences and to summon the menfolk to action. Riders had also been sent to the Great Forest of Yore to warn the half-elves that lived there and to make an appeal for allied forces. King Salamon was also a wise man. He knew well that the news would inevitably reach the Grand Wizard of Yore, a white sorcerer of great power, who lived deep within the forest. The wizard was old, and would not last through a battle of this magnitude. But he schooled a number of young magicians, and perhaps one of his students in the magic arts with courage and ambition would aid the king and his subjects...

You are the star pupil of the Grand Wizard of Yore. He has been a difficult Master and your own impatience has often got the better of you. Perhaps a little too headstrong, you left immediately for Salamon's court. The king welcomed you enthusiastically and explained his plan. The battle could be avoided without bloodshed if Balthus were to be assassinated before his army could be amassed.

The mission ahead of you is extremely perilous. Balthus Dire is surrounded, in his Citadel, by a multitude of appalling creatures. Although Magic is your strongest weapon, there will be times when you must rely on your sword to survive.

King Salamon has briefed you on your mission and warned you of the dangers that lie ahead. One way through the Citadel is the best for you to take. If you discover it, you will be successful with a minimum of personal risk. It may take you several trips to find the easiest way through.

You leave the Vale of Willow on the long hike to the Black Tower. At the foot of the hill of Craggen Rock, you can see its outline against the dark sky...