Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks
Location: Allansia, Titan
References: 400
Publication Details
Author(s): Ian Livingstone

Illustrator(s): John Sibbick
FF26 Dargon Both
Cover illustrator: Les Edwards
First published: April 9 1987
Number 26
ISBN: ISBN 0-14-032155-1
Previous Book: Beneath Nightmare Castle
Next Book: Star Strider
Wizard (Series 1)
Cover illustrator: Les Edwards
First published: October 7 2002
Number 6
ISBN: ISBN 1-84046-396-1
Previous Book: City of Thieves
Next Book: House of Hell
Wizard (Series 2)

Crypt of the Sorcerer is a single-player role-playing gamebook, written by Ian Livingstone, illustrated by John Sibbick and originally published in 1987 by Puffin Books. It was later republished by Wizard Books in 2002. It forms part of Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone's Fighting Fantasy series. It is the 26th in the series in the original Puffin series (ISBN 0-14-032155-1) and 6th in the Wizard "Series 1" (ISBN 1-84046-396-1).


The book had two potential working titles, Crypt of the Necromancer and The Howling Tunnels.[1]


An ancient evil is stirring!

The long-dead sorcerer Razaak has been re-awoken and is poised to fulfil his promise of death and tyranny. The Forces of Chaos are at large across Allansia and it seems that they are all pitted against YOU! For it is up to you to battle against the odds - to find the only weapon to which Razaak is vulnerable, to arm yourself with protections against his awesome powers, and to face him in his lair, the Crypt of the Sorcerer!

Part story, part game, this is a book in which YOU become the hero! Two dice, a pencil and an eraser are all you need. YOU decide which routes to take, which dangers to risk and which foes to fight.

Razaak, an Evil Necromancer, has re-awoken after being entombed for a hundred years. He plans to send his army of undead to take over Allansia. The main objective for the reader is to find his sword, the only weapon which will harm him, and then to find and defeat him. Companions, a Hunter and a Dwarf, are found along the way to help with the adventure.


The book in general follows the original rules set down in The Warlock of Firetop Mountain (see Game System).

Unique RulesEdit

The opening paragraph sees the player given a Healing Potion by Gereth Yaztromo which has five doses which restore four stamina points each dose.[3]

Equipment ListEdit

No equipment list is given. It is assumed, since you start with no skill penalties, that you begin the adventure with the standard sword, leather armour, and backpack.

Cover and IllustrationsEdit

Main article: Crypt of the Sorcerer (illustrations)


The original cover of the book was designed and illustrated by Les Edwards.

When the book was republished by Wizard the cover was re-worked Les Edwards.

Crypt of the Sorceror through the years
1987 1989 1990 1993 2002 2002
FF26 Dargon Both Figfan26 Figfan26 Figfan26r
Dragon Format Dragon No No. No. Spine Only No Bronze-Foil Wizard "Special
Limited Edition"
£1.951 £? £2.992 £? £4.99 £4.99


  1. Price of 1st Impression
  2. Price of 5th Impression


The interior illustrations were by John Sibbick. There were 32 full page illustrations and 5 minor repeated illustrations scattered throughout the text. The paragraphs with a full page illustration were: 7, 18, 33, 45, 56, 68, 79, 90, 103, 115, 127, 139, 152, 167, 178, 189, 202, 214, 226, 239, 249, 261, 276, 286, 299, 315, 326, 339, 353, 365, 377 and 391.

The colour map on the inside front cover was by Leo Hartas. It was not reproduced for the Wizard edition.

Intertextual ReferencesEdit

Other MediaEdit

Main CharactersEdit

YOU: Hero of Crypt of the Sorcerer



Further NotesEdit

  • The central plot of Razaak the necromancer bears more than a passing similarity to the Conan story Black Colossus.
  • This is one of the hardest Fighting Fantasy books, since the victory path is very narrow, leaving very little room for error and therefore making gameplay extremely unforgiving. There are many certain artefacts and items that must be collected in order to be successful. For instance, part of the adventure involves fighting a rare creature known as the Gargantis to get its horn; the only way to defeat it is by gaining the power of chameleonite camouflage and a certain crystal as a protection. But in order to gain the crystal in the first place, the player must expose himself to a deadly menace at the start which can easily end the game very quickly, if the die roll to be made is unlucky enough. Not only that, there are other crucial dice rolls scattered throughout the book that have a significant chance of getting an instant death, which has nothing to do with the player's skill, stamina, or luck scores. Therefore even if the player has maximum scores, the chances of him/her surviving is still deemed to be small.
  • Uniquely, Leo Hartas is given a credit on the title page for the map as well as a credit on the copyright page.


  • The equipment list is missing which may be an error.
  • Although you need the Crystal of Sanity to protect yourself from the Gargantis, no option is given to use it if you encounter Razaak's Hellcat pet, which also has a mental attack. It is possible the Crystal's powers are drained when you face the Gargantis.
  • Typo in (115): We are told that "Lava Demons metamorphose into Fire Imps" but in the very next sentence they are described as "Lava Imps".


To Jack

1987 version is dedicated: "To all Puffin warriors, especially Anne Ainley, Liz Attenborough, Susan Brent, Susan Elliott, Robin Wakefield and Annie Winterbotham"

See AlsoEdit


External LinksEdit


  1. Warlock Issue 10 - p.4
  2. Crypt of the Sorcerer - Back Cover ("Golden Dragon" Edition)
  3. Crypt of the Sorcerer - 1
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