The Bard's Tale Compendium
The Bard's Tale  |  The Destiny Knight  |  Thief of Fate  |  Construction Set

Bard's Tale Novels  |  Behind The Bard's Tale  |  Beyond The Bard's Tale

The Bard's Tale cover painting by Eric Joyner
Tales of the Unknown: The Bard's Tale
Story and Artwork
Game Manual
Spell List
Items and Monsters
Clues and Cheats
Files for Download

Cover painting by Eric Joyner

The Bard's Tale package design by Michael LaBash

Package design by Michael LaBash


Long ago, when magic still prevailed, the evil wizard Mangar the Dark threatened a small but harmonious country town called Skara Brae. Evil creatures oozed into Skara Brae and joined his shadow domain. Mangar froze the surrounding lands with a spell of Eternal Winter, totally isolating Skara Brae from any possible help. Then, one night the town militiamen all disappeared.

The future of Skara Brae hung in the balance. And who was left to resist? Only a handful of unproven young Warriors, junior Magic Users, a couple of Bards barely old enough to drink, and some out of work Rogues.

You are there. You are the leader of this ragtag group of freedom fighters. Luckily you have a Bard with you to sing your glories, if you survive. For this is the stuff of legends. And so the story begins...


“They Disbelieved My Wind Dragon.
They Possessed My Greater Demon.
Now It's Up to The Bard and His Magic Fire Horn . . .”

6 Gallant Heroes Cornered
First you explored the city. Then the cellars and sewers below. Now you're trapped in Harkyn's Castle. 7 levels conquered and still 9 to go.

Challenge Your Magic Skills
Command 4 different classes of Magic User: Conjurer, Magician, Sorceror and WIzard, each with unique spells. And the Bard who makes magic with his music. 85 spells in all. But choose well—the wrong spell and you're history.

Bigger. Better. Just as Good.
Written in 100% assembly language, over 400k worth. So it's fast. It's big. And there's computing power left over for 3-D scrolling, full-colour mazes and animated colour monsters.

Excellent game design. Each level is demanding—and different. There are more monsters, mazes, "specials", logic puzzles, & magic items than you've ever seen in a game like this before.

So it's "just as good" as you hoped a Dungeon Fantasy game could be.

There's a fire in Harkyn's Castle—and the Dragon is breathing it right at you.

  • 3-D scrolling city map features Taverns & Temples, Towers & Guardian Statues.
  • 85 Magic Spells, like Revelation, Animate Dead, Summoning & Sorceror Sight.
  • There are sixteen different 3-dimensional full colour mazes like Harkyn's Castle.


Commodore 64 title screen for The Bard's TaleCommodore 64 game screen for The Bard's Tale

Title screen animation and game screen from Commodore 64 version. Click here for the HD YouTube intro.

An hour long play of the Commodore 64 version with commentary. (Spoiler alert: it shows the ending.)

Title screen and game play from the Apple IIe version (YouTube)



Title screen from Amiga version

Amiga game screen for The Bard's Tale

Game screen from Amiga version

Amiga game play animation from The Bard's Tale

Game play slideshow from Amiga version (animated GIF)



Atari ST title screen for The Bard's TaleAtari ST game screen for The Bard's Tale

Title and game screen from Atari ST version

Title screen animation from the Atari ST version (YouTube)

PC (MS-DOS) title screen for The Bard's TalePC (MS-DOS) game screen for The Bard's Tale

Title and game screen from PC (MS-DOS) version


Nintendo title screen for The Bard's TaleNintendo game screen for The Bard's Tale

Title and game screen from Nintendo Entertainment System version

Game play from the Nintendo Entertainment System version (YouTube)



Macintosh title screen for The Bard's Tale

Title screen from Macintosh version

Macintosh game screen for The Bard's Tale

Game screen from Macintosh version


Advertisement for The Bard's Tale

An advertisement for The Bard's Tale scanned from an old Compute's Gazette magazine by Rob Huston


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The Bard's Tale © 1985-1998 Interplay Productions, © 2004-present inXile Entertainment.
The Bard's Tale Compendium website was designed by Poverello Media for fun and educational purposes in 2000. Credits.