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The Fools Errand - MS-DOS
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The Fools Errand
The Fool's Errand is a 1987 computer game by Cliff Johnson. It is a meta-puzzle game with storytelling, visual puzzles and a secret treasure map. It is a story about a wandering Blasna who seeks happiness in the Land of Tarot and faces the spells of the High Priestess. The sequel entitled The Fool and His Money was released on October 25, 2012. The game is structured as a booklet divided into five parts, each containing a large number of different chapters; the fairy tale can be viewed and read as a continuous prose on the screen. However, not every chapter is available at the start of the game, and the available chapters are not consecutive. Many chapters contain a puzzle (called a spell) related to them; completing such a puzzle unlocks subsequent chapters. Each chapter is named after a tarot card in the Greater Arcana or the Lesser Arcana. Often, puzzles are designed in such a way that the outcome of the puzzle logically leads to an unlocked chapter; for example, the player can complete an acrostic puzzle that results in the phrase "No Ship", which then unlocks a section of the story where the ranger actually reports that no ship has been spotted and deals with the consequences. Other puzzles include pictures of story excerpts and even clues to other puzzles. The Sun's Map for Macintosh The first chapter, The Sun, contains the puzzle The Map of the Sun. It is a puzzle with one piece for each chapter of the story; each puzzle piece appears only after unlocking the corresponding chapter. Each piece contains a symbol that represents the chapter it comes from and a part of a continuous path that flows through all the pieces in the order they are listed in the narrative. Once the map is successfully completed, other designs on the map become active click targets and can be used as clues or processes to decipher the true final puzzle: The Book of Thoth, hidden in the High Priestess chapter, requiring the reader to analyze the entire story as continuous prose and identify a series of phrases hidden in the narrative.