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Advanced Dungeons & Dragons

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Advanced Dungeons & Dragons
Advanced Dungeons and Dragons





NA: 1982
EU: April 20, 1982


Advanced Dungeons & Dragons is an game released for the Intellivision by Mattel in 1982. It is one of the first Dungeons & Dragons games to be officially licensed by TSR, Inc.. It was later retitled to Advanced Dungeons & Dragons: Cloudy Mountain to distinguish it from the sequel, Advanced Dungeons & Dragons: Treasure of Tarmin. It was also the first Intellivision cartridge to use more than 4K of ROM.


The gameplay revolves around exploring a series of randomly-generated, scrolling mazes looking for treasures and weapons with which to defeat monsters, and recover the two pieces of the Crown of Kings.

Players begin the game on one side of a large wilderness in a cabin, with a huge mountain topped by clouds and a slumbering dragon (Cloudy Mountain) on the other side. In between, a number of smaller mountains and geographical obstacles bar the way. On this map the player is represented as a trio of flashing white dots, which correspond to the number of lives the player has left. Each time the player loses a life, a dot disappears until all have gone and the game is over. According to the manual each dot represents one of a trio of adventurers who are on their quest to recover the Crown of Kings.

To complete the game, the player moves the white dots across the wilderness. Rivers, forests, gates, and small mountains bar their path. However many of the mountains contain caves that can be travelled through and explored. When the dots move adjacent to a mountain, it will change color to represent whether or not it can be entered. The new color corresponds to the type of monsters within, and also of what item will be within. Some will contain boats, which can be used to cross rivers, some keys for passing through gates, and others axes, which can be used to pass through forests.

Upon entering a mountain the main part of the game begins. The player is represented by a black figure armed with a bow. The player must guide the figure through a maze, which is initially shrouded in darkness. As the figure explores, the shroud disappears, revealing more of the maze. This idea of a "shroud" continues to be used in many RPGs produced since, including Dungeons and Dragons games.

The figure would move through the maze, until they found the exit or were killed (except in Cloudy Mountain, the final maze, where the level (and game) immediately ended on gathering both pieces of the Crown). While in the maze, a number of monsters would attack them. The difficulty of each mountain determined how many monsters were on the map, and also which "boss" monster was present. The player could kill the monsters by firing arrows with their bow (using the numbered key-pad, in a similar manner to the Tron: Deadly Discs game), which could ricochet off walls to hit their targets and potentially injure the player. Rats, bats and spiders are killed with a single hit, but "boss" monsters take two arrows to kill. These boss monsters included giant snakes, demons, and dragons. It was possible for several to be present in one maze. The "final bosses" were a pair of winged dragons within Cloudy Mountain, each of whom guarded one half of the Crown. These winged dragons took three arrows to kill. Indestructible and slow-moving "blobs" were also often present.

The player only had a limited number of arrows, although more could be found within each level. If the player ever exhausted their supply of arrows, they could still fire, but only at a reduced rate of one arrow every few seconds. In some levels, the axes, boats and keys for use on the wilderness map were also hidden somewhere within the maze. However the player had no form of melee attack, so it was advisable to always attack from a distance.

Players were damaged by physical contact with monsters. As they were injured, their colour would change from black, to blue, then red, and finally death upon the third injury. After dying, a grave stone would appear to mark their point of demise.

Sound was an integral part of the game. Although most of the map was in darkness, when approaching an adversary it was possible to hear them before seeing them. Snakes made a hissing sound, for example. However, every cave contained a number of bats, which although harmless to the figure, created a loud flapping sound with their wings that obscured the sound of any other monster, and made it much more likely for the player to run into one and be taken by surprise. One particularly troublesome adversary was the giant spider, which made no noise at all but it had the ability to consume your arrows. In addition, on the final level (within Cloudy Mountain) the echoing breathing of the dragon obscures other sounds. This same sound accompanies the wilderness map.

Upon completing the game, the screen reverts from the final maze to the wilderness map, where the dragon has disappeared from the top of cloudy mountain, and its deep breathing no longer sounds.

Several different difficulty settings were available, which determined the number of arrows the player might find, and the speed of the monsters they'd encounter.


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