The Zaltec gamebooks are graphical solo RPGs with both puzzle and combat elements.
Rather than narrated passages, the books are mostly comprised of illustrations, with bits of text here and there. The mechanics of the game are more akin to playing an old-school point-and-click game than reading a linear story. Progress is made both through exploration and solving the puzzles, whose solutions lead the player to additional sections of the books. In a way, the gamebooks are like escape-rooms, alongside the fighting.
The combat system is relatively simple: the player and the monster each roll 2d6+bonus, and the stronger one inflicts damage to the opponent. There are various skills and spells the player can acquire as they gain levels, adding some variation to the combat. The second book introduces a “fight or flight” mechanic, where the player can attempt to escape rather than fight, and increase either their combat or evasion skill each time they gain a level. Additionally, the character can permanently sacrifice their health in order to gain magic powers, allowing the player to choose in which manner to advance the character.
In the first book, The Return of Zaltec, you play as a young hero who wishes to restore peace to the land and earn a name for themselves. In Zaltec II: The Generation Stone, you play as a treasure hunter who is seeking the mythical Generation Stone, a magical artifact which, as a result of the events in the first book, is now believed to be real. The games do not necessarily need to be played in order, but the stories are connected and are most clear when played in chronological order. In the event that players do get stuck on a puzzle and wish to get a hint (or even the outright solution), there are walkthroughs available (although not recommended, as they spoil the puzzles).
The Zaltec gamebooks are written by Yehuda Shapira, and can be found at DriveThruRPG: The Return of Zaltec, Zaltec II: The Generation Stone