Following his last article about The Hobbit, Quentin Heath received many pleas for help. He makes his last visit to Middle Earth.
THE HOBBIT has proved to be one of the most popular adventure games for the 48K Spectrum. It has been elevated to cult status by many readers of Mind Games who continually find themselves stuck in the Goblins' Dungeon or facing the Dragon without an arrow.
This month I am closing the file on The Hobbit by revealing some hints and tips which have never been published. I warn you to read on only if you want to know the secrets of Hobbit.
The questions in my postbag centred mainly on the Goblins' Dungeon. We have reproduced part of a map prepared by a reader (see end) to show the structure of the dungeon to give you the answer to the problem, to which many readers have written to contribute their ideas.
The way out of the dungeon is simple. Ask Thorin to open the window. Then ask him to pick you up and carry you through the window. You will then find yourself in one of the many corridors of the Goblins' domain.
Some people have not tried to cross the river and doubled back to the forest gate. There is a boat hidden on the other side of the river and all you have to do is to throw the rope across, pull the boat through the water and climb into it.
You will then find yourself on the east bank and about to face those deadly spiders looking for a quick snack.
When you arrive at the first spiders' web you must break it with your hand. If you try to pierce it with your sword you will find yourself in trouble. Once you have broken the web you will be in the domain of the spiders. You can go east or north from there but if you want to survive you should take the latter option. If you go east you will finish in the deep bog.
The Elven King's Cellar is also a cause of difficulties. Some people find it difficult to get into the barrels to float in the river beneath the trap-door. It is best to have the ring in this situation. Wear it when the butler enters and eventually he will empty one of the barrels and leave off the lid. Get into the barrel and wait for the butler to push it into the river. You are then on your way to Lake Town and a battle with the dragon, Smaug.
The scoring system in the game seems to be erratic and many people who have finished the adventure have complained that they have not scored 100 percent. That is not a fault of the program. Readers who have not scored 100 percent have not been to all the places and done all the things they should have done.
I would like to hear from anyone who has managed to score 100 percent as I am still trying to reach that magic number. I would, however, like to stress that I cannot deal personally with more letters on The Hobbit. I have given you sufficient information to get out of most difficulties.
Next month I shall deal with two graphics adventures. The first is a new game called Halls of Things and the other is Black Crystal, brought to you by popular demand. If you have any hints or problems with Black Crystal I would like to hear from you.
The map of The Hobbit was supplied by Stephen Hawkes whose 80 percent is one of the highest recorded.
If you have any views on mind games or if you have hints and tips on adventure, computer-moderated games or chess, please write to me: Quentin Heath, c/o Sinclair User.
The map was split into two in the original magazine. For completeness, hobmap1.gif (50k) and hobmap2.gif (44k) can be downloaded if desired - though these are low quality gifs to keep the file sizes as low as possible.