The Battle of Philip against the Forces of Creation

by Peter Arnold and Anne Ungar

Fantasy
1989

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
In other news: Demons have overrun the Vatican., February 5, 2021
by Rovarsson (Belgium)
Related reviews: Horror, Fantasy

But first:

Completely out of the blue, your D&D-game has cracked through the ceiling of your living room and spat out Tark, a confused sorceress. It has also incinerated your roleplaying band of friends and kidnapped your girlfriend.

The Battle of Philip Against the Forces of Creation is easily the most super-awesomest title for an adventure game I have ever heard. I wish I could write here that the game itself is as awesome...

Don't get me wrong, it's a fun game, but it does not live up to the radical-mayhem-supercoolness of its title.

After the intrusion of the D&D-world upon our own, you have to go on a castle-crawl to free Cindy. The puzzles are standard adventuring fare. Find a key, use a spell, get rid of a murderous demon-queen, stuff like that...
However, you have to die several times to know where the puzzles actually are, and a few times more to get the solution. That's obviously a part of the game. The death scenes are quite amusing.

The writing overall is quite good. The dark fantasy atmosphere when you finally get out of your house (past a Fire Elemental in the garage) is great. Once in the castle, the grim and oppressive feeling goes up a notch or two. In here, some descriptions, while well written, are downright horrifying and obscene. (So over the top to my tastes that it became laughable. But maybe not to all players. Be warned.)
Unfortunately, the scenery in those descriptions is disappointingly underimplemented. You are limited to examining and manipulating the objects in the list below the room description, everything else is met by a default "You can't do that"-response.

The castle is big and diverse. Many rooms are lusciously/revoltingly described. There are also bottlenecks in predictable but enticing places (getting in the cellar, climbing to the top of the tower,...), which makes for good pacing.

From background info on the Internet Archive and from an in-game object (the "Reference Book for People who are not Philip") I gather that this was a joke/gift game to Philip Kegelmeyer, the author of Tark Simmons, Priestess of the First Church. Because of this, there are a number of inside jokes and references that any other player will not get (hence the reference book). Nonetheless, the game is often funny and the grim & gore is well done (if you can stomach stuff like that).

Good game for a few hours of fun/gore.