The interactive fiction genre is one packed with classics that really show off the power of the printed word, with the likes of Zork, The Mist and The Pawn standing up well today. Venom falls into the category of the text adventure which also features graphics to add atmosphere to proceedings and while it may not be a classic of the genre, it stands as a solid if uninspiring entry. The plot is a fantasy-style story, set in a world where the evil Traklan is about to arise once more, after having been supposedly consigned to eternity underground by the legendary lord Mirosima and who now seeks revenge for his imprisonment. The player takes on the role of Rikka, a close chum of the current king and who happens to be a dab hand with a sword, which is going to come in handy in the coming adventure as you seek to prevent Traklan's return. Venom makes use of a simple enough interface which handily lists all the available commands in a window and which makes navigating the world a relative breeze. This makes the game quite accessible to genre newcomers and Venom does actually make for a good, if unspectacular, introduction to this type of game. The visuals are simple enough and although they aren't as impressive as those in Guild of Thieves, they add in some much appreciated atmosphere which helps to bring the game to life. The text and narrative are generally well written enough and the story as it unfolds is quite engaging although it won't win any awards for originality. Puzzles too are solid enough, generally being tricky without being frustrating or illogical, so on the whole if you're tempted to dabble in the field of interactive fiction, you could do worse than check out Venom.