You are the warrior, Lone Wolf, last of the Kai masters of Sommerlund and sole survivor of the massacre that destroyed your kinsmen during a bitter war with your age-old enemies—the Darklords of Helgedad.
Many centuries have passed since Sun Eagle, the first of your kind, established the Order of the Kai. Aided by the magicians of Dessi, he completed a perilous quest to find seven crystals of power known as the Lorestones of Nyxator, and upon their discovery he unlocked a wisdom and strength that lay within both the Lorestones and himself. He recorded the nature of his discoveries and his experiences in a great tome entitled The Book of the Magnakai. You have discovered this lost Kai treasure and have given a solemn pledge to restore the Kai to their former glory, thereby ensuring the security of your land in the years to come. However, your diligent study of this ancient book has enabled you to master only three of the ten Magnakai Disciplines. To fulfil your pledge, you must complete the quest first undertaken by Sun Eagle over a thousand years ago. By doing so successfully, you, too, will acquire the power and wisdom of the Magnakai, which is held within the Lorestones’ crystal forms.
Already your quest has taken you far from your northern homeland. Following in the footsteps of the first Kai Grand Master, you journeyed to Dessi and sought the help of the Elder Magi, the magicians who aided Sun Eagle on his quest long ago. There you learned that for centuries the Elder Magi had awaited your coming. An ancient Dessi legend tells of the birth and rise to greatness of two koura-tas-kai, which means ‘sons of the sun’. One was named Ikar, which means ‘eagle’, and the other was named Skarn, which means ‘wolf’. A prophecy foretold that the koura-tas-kai would each come from the north to seek the counsel of the Elder Magi in order that they might fulfil a great quest. Although separated by several centuries, they would share one spirit, one purpose, and one destiny—to triumph over the champions of darkness in an age of great peril. The Elder Magi knew that you were Skarn—the wolf of Dessi legend—and in keeping with their ancient vows they promised to help you complete the Magnakai quest.
In Elzian, the capital of Dessi, you were tutored in the histories of Magnamund and received lessons in lore that you would have learned from the Kai masters if only they, like you, had survived the murderous Darklord attack on the Kai Monastery twelve years ago. You were eager to learn all that your tutor, Lord Rimoah, could teach you in preparation for the next stage of your quest, but grim news from the Darklands cut short your tuition. In the Darklord city of Helgedad a civil war had erupted, following your defeat of Haakon, Archlord of the Black City. After five years, the battle for the throne of Helgedad had finally been won by a Darklord called Gnaag. The other Darklords, now united behind this new leader, were ordered to amass huge armies in preparation for the conquest of Magnamund. Swiftly their Giak legions grew in number, enabling Gnaag to launch a sweeping invasion that was to catch the freelands unprepared. Several countries, after brief but futile resistance, were completely overrun by Darkland armies; others surrendered without fighting in the face of their determined might. And sadly there were others who chose to betray former friends and allies by joining the Darklord cause, in the misguided hope that they would share in the spoils of victory, following the triumph of Darklord Gnaag. One such land was Vassagonia, a powerful desert realm to the north of Dessi. Her armies mobilized and invaded the neighbouring states of Casiorn and Cloeasia, and then marched west through the republic of Anari in order to join with Gnaag’s horde as it steamrollered across central Magnamund. The Elder Magi urged you to begin the quest for the fourth Lorestone at once. The enemy armies were converging on the Anarian capital of Tahou, and beneath that ancient city the Lorestone lay hidden.
Aided by Magemaster Banedon, an old friend and fellow countryman, you set off in haste for Tahou and arrived barely hours ahead of the enemy. Successfully you made your descent and discovered the object of your quest, but on returning to the surface you found Tahou transformed into a blazing inferno. Darklord Gnaag and Zakhan Kimah, the ruler of Vassagonia, had learnt of your presence and were determined to destroy you at all costs. For days their engines of war had hurled fire and rock across the walls of Tahou with devastating effect. Then a massive assault, led by the Zakhan himself, breached the west gate and gained entry to the burning city. Armed with a weapon of awesome power, the evil Zakhan sought you out and challenged you to a fight to the death. The struggle was desperate but you emerged victorious and led the Anarians in a counterattack that cleared the city of the invading foe. The allies of Anari arrived to raise the siege and in the ensuing battle the demoralized armies of Gnaag and Kimah were smashed and routed.
Your defeat of Zakhan Kimah turned the tide of war decisively against the Darkland armies and paved the way for the liberation of the lands they had taken by force. But the sweet taste of victory turned sour when you discovered that Darklord Gnaag had captured the last three remaining Lorestones of Nyxator. Lord Rimoah and other members of the High Council of the Elder Magi joined you in Tahou to help formulate a plan of action. They had already received word from Prince Graygor, the ruler of Eru, that one of his patrols had found a man near the borders of the Hellswamp. He was a Talestrian soldier who had escaped from the dread city-fortress of Torgar where he had been imprisoned after being captured in battle. He had suffered terribly at the hands of the Drakkarim—evil humans in the service of the Darklords—and when found he was so badly injured that he was almost unrecognizable. Before he died he spoke of three radiant gems filled with golden light that had been brought to Torgar from the Darklord city of Mozgôar.
‘We are now sure that what he saw was the arrival of the stolen Lorestones,’ said Rimoah, speaking on behalf of the High Council. ‘They radiate a goodness so strong that Gnaag could not hold them in the Darklands but had to move them to Torgar. There his sorcerers—the Nadziranim—are searching for the means to destroy them. The black art of the Nadziranim has grown powerful of late and we fear they may achieve the task set them by Gnaag. Therefore we must act quickly and with utmost secrecy if the Lorestones and the Magnakai quest are to be saved.’
The Elder Magi had already made preparations for your secret journey to Eru where, upon your arrival, Prince Graygor will help you reach the grim city of Torgar. The thought of having to enter the terrible Drakkarim stronghold fills you with dread, but your pledge to destroy the Darklords and restore the Kai strengthens your resolve and helps you suppress your fear.
On the eve of your journey to Eru, the Elder Magi convene a special meeting of the High Council to pray for the success of your mission. For several hours they kneel in prayer until finally they arise and intone the blessing that has sustained you in the past: ‘May the Gods Ishir and Kai protect you on your journey into darkness, Kor-Skarn.’
You keep a record of your adventure on the Action Chart.
During your training as a Kai Master you have developed fighting prowess—COMBAT SKILL and physical stamina—ENDURANCE. Before you set off on your adventure you need to measure how effective your training has been. To do this take a pencil and, with your eyes closed, point with the blunt end of it onto the Random Number Table. If you pick 0 it counts as zero.
The first number that you pick from the Random Number Table in this way represents your COMBAT SKILL. Add 10 to the number you picked and write the total in the COMBAT SKILL section of your Action Chart (i.e. if your pencil fell on the number 4 in the Random Number Table you would write in a COMBAT SKILL of 14). When you fight, your COMBAT SKILL will be pitted against that of your enemy. A high score in this section is therefore very desirable.
The second number that you pick from the Random Number Table represents your powers of ENDURANCE. Add 20 to this number and write the total in the ENDURANCE section of your Action Chart (i.e. if your pencil fell on the number 6 on the Random Number Table you would have 26 ENDURANCE points).
If you are wounded in combat you will lose ENDURANCE points. If at any time your ENDURANCE points fall to zero or below, you are dead and the adventure is over. Lost ENDURANCE points can be regained during the course of the adventure, but your number of ENDURANCE points can never rise above the number you started with.
If you have successfully completed any of the previous adventures in the Lone Wolf series, you can carry your current scores of COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE points over to Book 10. You may also carry over any Weapons and Special Items you have in your possession at the end of your last adventure, and these should be entered on your new Action Chart. (You are still limited to two Weapons and eight Backpack Items.)
You many choose one bonus Magnakai Discipline to add to your Action Chart for every Lone Wolf Magnakai adventure you successfully complete (Books 6–12).
During your training as a Kai Lord, and in the course of the adventures that led to the discovery of The Book of the Magnakai, you have mastered all ten of the basic warrior skills known as the Kai Disciplines.
After studying The Book of the Magnakai, you have also reached the rank of Kai Master Superior, which means that you have learnt three of the Magnakai Disciplines listed below. It is up to you to choose which three skills these are. As all of the Magnakai Disciplines may be of use to you at some point on your adventure, pick your three with care. The correct use of a Magnakai Discipline at the right time can save your life.
The Magnakai skills are divided into groups, each of which is governed by a separate school of training. These groups are called ‘Lore-circles’. By mastering all of the Magnakai Disciplines in a particular Lore-circle, you can gain an increase in your COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE points score. (See the section ‘Lore-circles of the Magnakai’ for details of these bonuses.)
When you have chosen your three Magnakai Disciplines, enter them in the Magnakai Disciplines section of your Action Chart.
This Magnakai Discipline enables a Kai Master to become proficient in the use of all types of weapon. When you enter combat with a weapon you have mastered, you add 3 points to your COMBAT SKILL. If you have the Magnakai Discipline of Weaponmastery with Bow, you may add 3 to any number that you choose from the Random Number Table, when using the Bow. The rank of Kai Master Superior, with which you begin the Magnakai series, means you are skilled in three of the weapons in the list below.
The fact that you are skilled with three Weapons does not mean that you begin the adventure carrying any of them. However, you will have opportunities to acquire Weapons during your adventure. For every Lone Wolf book that you complete in the Magnakai series, you may add an additional Weapon to your Weaponmastery Checklist.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Weaponmastery: +3 COMBAT SKILL points’ on your Action Chart, and tick your chosen weapons on the Weapons List. You cannot carry more than two Weapons.
This Magnakai Discipline enables a Kai Master to communicate with most animals and to determine their purpose and intentions. It also enables a Kai Master to fight from the saddle with great advantage.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Animal Control’ on your Action Chart.
The possessor of this skill can restore 1 lost ENDURANCE point to his total for every numbered section of the book through which he passes, provided he is not involved in combat. (This can only be done after his ENDURANCE has fallen below its original level.) This Magnakai Discipline also enables a Kai Master to cure disease, blindness, and any combat wounds sustained by others, as well as himself. Using the knowledge that mastery of this skill provides will also allow a Kai Master to identify the properties of any herbs, roots, and potions that may be encountered during the adventure.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Curing: +1 ENDURANCE point for each section without combat’ on your Action Chart.
This Magnakai skill allows a Kai Master to blend in with his surroundings, even in the most exposed terrain. It will enable him to mask his body heat and scent, and to adopt the dialect and mannerisms of any town or city that he visits.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Invisibility’ on your Action Chart.
This skill ensures that a Kai Master will never starve in the wild; he will always be able to hunt for food, even in areas of wasteland and desert. It also enables a Kai Master to move with great speed and dexterity and will allow him to ignore any extra loss of COMBAT SKILL points due to a surprise attack or ambush.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Huntmastery’ on your Action Chart.
In addition to the basic skill of being able to recognize the correct path in unknown territory, the Magnakai skill of Pathsmanship will enable a Kai Master to read foreign languages, decipher symbols, read footprints and tracks (even if they have been disturbed), and detect the presence of most traps. It also grants him the gift of always knowing intuitively the position of north.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Pathsmanship’ on your Action Chart.
This psychic skill enables a Kai Master to attack an enemy using the force of his mind. It can be used as well as normal combat weapons and adds 4 extra points to your COMBAT SKILL.
It is a powerful Discipline, but it is also a costly one. For every round of combat in which you use Psi-surge, you must deduct 2 ENDURANCE points. A weaker form of Psi-surge called Mindblast can be used against an enemy without losing any ENDURANCE points, but it will add only 2 extra points to your COMBAT SKILL. (Psi-surge and Mindblast cannot be used simultaneously.) Psi-surge cannot be used if your ENDURANCE falls to 6 points or below, and not all of the creatures encountered on your adventure will be affected by it; you will be told if a creature is immune.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Psi-surge: +4 COMBAT SKILL points but −2 ENDURANCE points per round’ and ‘Mindblast: +2 COMBAT SKILL points’ on your Action Chart.
Many of the hostile creatures that inhabit Magnamund have the ability to attack you using their Mindforce. The Magnakai Discipline of Psi-screen prevents you from losing any ENDURANCE points when subjected to this form of attack and greatly increases your defence against supernatural illusions and hypnosis.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Psi-screen: no points lost when attacked by Mindforce’ on your Action Chart.
Mastery of this Magnakai skill will enable you to withstand extremes of heat and cold without losing ENDURANCE points and to move items by your powers of concentration alone.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Nexus’ on your Action Chart.
This skill may warn a Kai Master of imminent or unseen danger or enable him to detect an invisible or hidden enemy. It may also reveal the true purpose or intent of a stranger or strange object encountered in your adventure. Divination may enable you to communicate telepathically with another person and to sense if a creature possesses psychic abilities.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Divination’ on your Action Chart.
If you successfully complete the mission as set in Book 10 of the Lone Wolf series, you may add a further Magnakai Discipline of your choice to your Action Chart in Book 11. This additional skill, together with your other Magnakai skills and any Special Items that you have found and been able to keep during your adventures may then be used in the next adventure in the Lone Wolf Magnakai series, which is called The Prisoners of Time.
Before you leave Anari and journey across Magnamund to the principality of Eru, the Senate of Tahou give you a map of Ghatan and its surrounding territories, and a pouch of gold. To find out how much gold is in the pouch, pick a number from the Random Number Table. Add 10 to the number you have picked. The total equals the number of Gold Crowns inside the pouch, and you should now enter this number in the ‘Gold Crowns’ section of your Action Chart. If you have successfully completed books 1–9 of the Lone Wolf adventures, you may add this sum to the total sum of Crowns you already possess. You can carry a maximum of only fifty Crowns, but additional Crowns can be left in safekeeping at your Kai Monastery.
The Senate of Tahou, in gratitude for your help in saving their city from destruction, offer you a choice of equipment to aid you on your perilous mission. You can take five items from the list below, again adding to these, if necessary, any you may already possess. However, remember that you can carry a maximum of two Weapons and eight Backpack Items.
List the five items that you choose on your Action Chart, under the heading given in brackets, and make a note of any effect they may have on your ENDURANCE points or COMBAT SKILL.
Now that you have your equipment, the following list shows you how it is carried. You do not need to make notes, but you should refer back to this list in the course of your adventure.
Special Items are not carried in the Backpack. When you discover a Special Item, you will be told how to carry it.
The maximum number of Special Items that can be carried on any adventure is twelve. Surplus Special Items may be left for safekeeping at your Kai Monastery.
Any item that may be of use and can be picked up on your adventure and entered on your Action Chart is given initial capitals (e.g. Gold Dagger, Magic Pendant) in the text. Unless you are told it is a Special Item, carry it in your Backpack.
There will be occasions during your adventure when you have to fight an enemy. The enemy’s COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE points are given in the text. Lone Wolf’s aim in the combat is to kill the enemy by reducing his ENDURANCE points to zero while losing as few ENDURANCE points as possible himself.
At the start of a combat, enter Lone Wolf’s and the enemy’s ENDURANCE points in the appropriate boxes on the Combat Record section of your Action Chart.
The sequence for combat is as follows:
This process of combat continues until the ENDURANCE points of either the enemy or Lone Wolf are reduced to zero or below, at which point that combatant is declared dead. If Lone Wolf is dead, the adventure is over. If the enemy is dead, Lone Wolf proceeds but with his ENDURANCE points possibly reduced.
A summary of Combat Rules appears in the back of this book.
During your adventure you may be given the chance to evade combat. If you have already engaged in a round of combat and decide to evade, calculate the combat for that round in the usual manner. All points lost by the enemy as a result of that round are ignored, and you make your escape. Only Lone Wolf may lose ENDURANCE points during that round, but then that is the risk of running away! You may only evade if the text of the particular section allows you to do so.
The following table is a guide to the ranks and titles that are achieved by Kai Masters at each stage of their training. As you successfully complete each adventure in the Lone Wolf Magnakai series, you will gain an additional Magnakai Discipline and progress towards the ultimate distinction of a Kai Warrior—Kai Grand Mastership.
In the years before their massacre, the Kai Masters of Sommerlund devoted themselves to the study of the Magnakai. These skills were divided into four schools of training called ‘Lore-circles’. By mastering all of the Magnakai Disciplines of a Lore-circle, the Kai Masters developed their fighting prowess (COMBAT SKILL), and their physical and mental stamina (ENDURANCE) to a level far higher than any mortal warrior could otherwise attain.
Listed below are the four Lore-circles of the Magnakai and the skills that must be mastered in order to complete them.
By completing a Lore-circle, you may add to your COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE the extra bonus points that are shown below.
All bonus points that you acquire by completing a Lore-circle are additions to your basic COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE scores.
As you rise through the higher levels of Magnakai training you will find that some of your skills will steadily improve. If you have reached the rank of Primate (four skills), Tutelary (five skills), Principalin (six skills), or Mentora (seven skills), you will now benefit from improvements to the following Magnakai Disciplines:
The nature of any additional improvements and how they affect your Magnakai Disciplines will be noted in the Improved Disciplines section of future Lone Wolf books.
Your quest to retrieve the last three Lorestones of Nyxator from the clutches of the Darklords will be fraught with deadly dangers. The evil host of Helgedad will summon their most brutal forces to thwart your Magnakai quest. Make notes as you progress through this story—they will be of great help in this and in future adventures.
Many things that you find will help you during your mission. Some Special Items will be of use in this and future Lone Wolf books, while others may be red herrings of no real value at all, so be selective in what you decide to keep.
Choose your three Magnakai Disciplines with care, for a wise choice enables any player to complete the quest, no matter how weak their initial COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE points scores. Successful completion of previous Lone Wolf adventures, although an advantage, is not essential for the completion of this Magnakai adventure.
The restoration of the Kai and the future of your homeland depend on the success of this mission. May the spirit of your ancestors and the wisdom of the great God Kai guide you on the path of the Magnakai.