Curse of the Azure Bonds

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Curse of the Azure Bonds

DOS - 1989

Also released on: Mac - Amiga - Apple II - Commodore 64 - PC-98

Alt name Curse of the Azure Bonds: A Forgotten Realms Fantasy Role-Playing Epic, Vol. II
Year 1989
Platform DOS
Released in France, Germany, United Kingdom, United States
Genre Role-Playing (RPG)
Theme D&D / AD&D, Dungeon Crawler, Fantasy, Licensed Title, Turn-based
Publisher Strategic Simulations, Inc., U.S. Gold Ltd.
Developer Strategic Simulations, Inc.
Perspective 1st-Person
4.49 / 5 - 41 votes

Download extras files
Manual, refcard and misc available

Description of Curse of the Azure Bonds

Read Full Description

In the annals of RPG gaming, few series can boast of being "pioneers" of the genre more than SSI with its "Gold Box" series, all based on AD&D mechanics and worlds licensed from TSR.

Of these, four games set in the "Forgotten Realms" world stand out as the best of the bunch. Comprising four games released over four years, Pool of Radiance, Curse of the Azure Bonds, Secret of the Silver Blades, and Pools of Darkness remain a lot of fun even today as some of the most addictive - albeit maddeningly combat-ridden - RPGs ever created.

Pools of Radiance and Pools of Darkness are my most favorite of the series. Pool of Radiance because it was a great beginning to a solid RPG system, and Pools of Darkness because it gives you a chance to meet famous NPCs from AD&D world, marvel at the non-linear storyline, and develop your heroes to very high levels. All four games are must-haves for RPG fans everywhere, although Secret of the Silver Blades is a disappointment compared to the rest.

GameSpot's nice History of AD&D gives a good overview of Curse of Azure Bonds as follows: "Published in 1989, Curse of the Azure Bonds followed the story of Pool of Radiance with more monsters, treasure, character classes and level caps.

Shortly after the defeat of Tyranthraxus the Flamed One and the destruction of the Pool of Radiance, the heroic party was waylaid, knocked out, and marked with the five mysterious azure bond images stamped just beneath the skin of each adventurer's arm. Your characters recovered consciousness in the town of Tilverton on the Dalelands. Before they could even begin to ascertain who or what had attacked them, they found themselves compelled beyond their will to attack the entourage of a false prince and were beset by the city guard. Fleeing to the thieves' guild beneath the sewers, the members of the party would then begin their arduous quest to hunt down the creators of each of the five magical bonds and ultimately free themselves of the curse.

In terms of gameplay and structure, Curse of the Azure Bonds followed its predecessor more or less directly, though it broadened the path considerably. The already solid game system of Pool of Radiance benefited greatly from material that had hitherto been conspicuously missing, including the ability to advance to tenth level for clerics and eleventh level for magic-users (which meant that spells of up to fifth level were available), the ability to enlist characters of the more esoteric AD&D Paladin and Ranger (and with the latter, the line of Druid spells) character classes, and the option for human characters to dual-class."

Review By HOTUD

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Comments and reviews

BWYUH 2021-10-30 1 point DOS version

Glad I nabbed a lot of games before GOG got their mitts on them. No way I'm going to pay for DOS games. If you search, you can still find games for free that GOG snatched up.

larry 2019-12-06 1 point is just offering the dos version of the game. and because gog has got hold of the license, all versions of the game has been removed from various abandonware and platform dedicated sites.

does that mean; it is impossible to play c64 verion of that game, anymore?!?!?!

this is also a problem for many other games!

blahblah 2019-01-02 1 point

The SSI gold box D&D games were known to be difficult, either combat-wise or puzzle-wise (eg: Pool of Radiance had parts in it where you would get utterly destroyed if you attempted them before levelling up, and there was a teleporter puzzle that was nigh-impossible without a walkthrough), but Curse of the Azure Bonds was just ridiculously hard by comparison.

IIRC, you can try to remove each azure bond in whatever order you see fit, but, much like a Mega Man game, there's definitely an order that's easier to follow then if you try it a different way. But, you will once again end up in insane combats with tons of enemies and not enough area-effect spells to deal with it all.

While I feel that cheat guides ruin some of the fun, you should definitely keep one bookmarked or on-hand just in case you get to the point of beating your head into the keyboard out of frustration. Often, the "solution" to seemingly impossible situations is "oh, you should have done this one (not so obvious) thing first before moving on". Just insane amounts of frustration.

But, if you like old-school D&D, the gold box series won't disappoint.

midnightrizer 2018-02-18 -2 points

Ralphie you are wrong about that there is a windows 98 version for download right on this page.

Stormhammer 2017-06-13 1 point

I get a checksum error every time I try to leave Hap after beating Dracondros. I answer the 3 questions, and at the codewheel screen I always end up with a checksum error. Shortly thereafter the game crashes while battling Crimdrac with a 209 error. Any ideas???

I'm running the PC version under DOSBox .74

ralphie 2017-03-03 1 point

Good game - must use DOS BOX in order to play the dos version. Does not work on modern pc's with W98, Vista, XP, 7, 8, or 10. Plenty of youtube videos out there to learn how to use doxbox. Take the time to learn, it will be worth it.

Dan 2015-03-01 -4 points DOS version

Just a heads up, the manual posted here is the Adventurers Journal, not the actual game manual. The manual for the game, along with the journal, cluebook, reference card and code wheel, can all be downloaded from

C64Playa 2015-01-12 -3 points DOS version

Can I play this on Windows 7 64bit? I downloaded it but doesn't work...what do I need to do?

admin 2014-10-20 0 point DOS version

Manual added !

Tony 2014-10-19 1 point DOS version

Anyone have the manual?

Szaka 2013-09-17 2 points DOS version

Hi, I have a little problem.
I can't convert the characters from the Pool of Radiance into this program.
I tried to use the "copycurse" program, but if doesn't work for me. This program didn't find the source.
Could you help me?

guest 2012-10-03 1 point DOS version

Review of Curse of the Azure Bonds for DOS:

admin 2011-10-28 0 point DOS version

Download the game again, you will have a configuration prompt as you launch the game for the first time. The save will then work.
If you use the wrong graphic adapter or sound, just delete the CURSE.CFG file and relaunch the game.

Jason M 2011-10-28 0 point DOS version

Hey, what gives? When you create your chars, it won't save - "unexpected error save 3"

jason 2011-09-04 2 points DOS version

..same, cant use arrow keys, also on a laptop so no number pad. Isn't there a mouse interface?

DOSKING 2011-08-03 0 point DOS version

Works now, thanks!

admin 2011-08-02 0 point DOS version

Guys, you can scroll with your numpad, number 7 and 1. Have fun.

DOSKING 2011-08-01 0 point DOS version

what he said

syllven 2011-07-24 -1 point DOS version

you cannot scroll through any choices making all your characters dwarf males lawfulgood

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Game Extras and Resources

Some of these file may not be included in the game stores. For Curse of the Azure Bonds, we have the following files:

ManualEnglish version 8 MB (DOS) RefcardEnglish version 644 KB (DOS) MiscAdventurers Journal English version 6 MB (DOS) MiscDocs as TXT English version 666 KB (DOS) MiscClue Book English version 25 MB (DOS)

Other Releases

Curse of the Azure Bonds was also released on the following systems:



Apple II

Commodore 64


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