By Keith Martin
Things start off in a sinister way as I arrive in the Heart’s Blood inn. The locals are initially reluctant to talk to me but are soon spilling their guts about their families and friends going missing, taken by the evil count to his castle. I am to go and rescue one young lass in particular who has been snatched. Just then a headless coachman turns up, offering me a ride to the castle but I decide I would rather walk so I am given some gold for the ferry and head off into the forest. Soon I meet a woman and a bear. I try talking to them…
As I start talking, the woman fires an arrow at me. Ouch. When I explain I am not up to no good, she seems rather apologetic and gives me some food to make up for it (not sure that quite covers being shot with an arrow). Possibly more helpful is the fact that she walks me to the Ferry and stops the little man there from charging me and also advised me not to accept his hospitality but to stay with the Forrester over the river. So I don’t and get across the river for free! I soon arrive at the forrester’s hut and his hospitality is indeed good. He gives me some food, tells me to look for a guy called Lothar in the castle as he is a goodie. Perhaps most importantly, given the title of the book, he also give me a clove of garlic.
Eventually I come to the castle itself. The front door is ajar so I let myself into a large courtyard. I stride purposely across, through some doors at the far end and find myself in an entrance hall. I go through a door in the north find myself in a corridor. I enter the first room and encounter an enchanting scene of Zombies preparing dinner. They cower before my greatness so I sneak past them and take some meals from the kitchen. I then go through another door.
This door leads to a dining room that contains a rug that attacks me! Wonderful. I kill the rug, grab some silverware and head into the next room. Here I find some Brandy and a Silver Mirror so I take both of those. I then back track and try the door to the North. It is locked and I need a key so I head down a corridor opposite. At the end of the corridor is a room inhabited by a fairly friendly doctor. I bribe him with the silverware I just stole from the room across the corridor and the Gold that I didn’t have to pay the ferry man. This is just enough to ask him about the library and for him to give me a key – now we’re getting somewhere. I use the key to open the locked door.
The library is an interesting room and it is here that I learn.. shock horror… the count is a Vampire! Well I never! Good job I have that Garlic… Anyhoo, I also pick up the Book of Swords which looks like it might come in handy. I leave through a secret passage, climb some stairs and find myself in a room with Zombies. I dispatch the Zombies and then head down some stairs.
The next room I come to contains Gunthar Heydrich. He is a pleasant healer and seems very pleased that I have come to kill his brother. So much so that he gives me a Silver Crucifix that I will need to kill him. He also tells me that the book I picked up in the library contains the sword that I need to kill him but it has been locked into the book by some magic. The only person who can free the sword is the count’s sister, Katarina but she is an apparently unpleasant character. Hey ho, on we go.
I open the other door and find a corridor with several doors leading off it. When I open the first door, I am hit by a blinding flash and attacked by a skeletal monster that shoots green rays out of its eyes! I fight on, having been partially blinded by the flash (I am also given the opportunity to escape) and manage to overcome the beast. My reward is a lock chest. Darn. I’ll come back if I find the key..
In the next room, there is an enveloping dark mist. I cannot fight it with my crappy normal sword so the mist smothers the life out of me and I am dead! Not good!
I thought I might start adding my map onto these reports. Obviously it is not complete and it may well be wrong but it might be of interest to someone so here is my Vault of the Vampire map: