Adventures from Infocom, early stars in game heaven !
Amazing how popular text adventures from Infocom were in the past.
Nowadays, nobody is exited about text adventures, most of the people would not even such a game for 5 minutes.
But - they were stars like "World of Warcraft" today. And these puzzles inside these games were very hard to solve. Summed up play hours for one adventure means numbers up to 30-40 hours (unless you got a solution).
The first Infocom text adventure was "Zork" (... THE great underground empire).
Two sequels followed, "Zork 2" and "Zork 3". All of them are based on a revolutionary idea: Logic was not hardwired, instead, a special intermediate code (= Zork interpreter language) was interpreted with an interpreter program (Z-Machine). So they didn't need to reinvent the whole program again and again, instead, the game was stored in a data file.
The games "Starcross", "Deadline", "Suspended", "Witness" and "Planetfall" followed.
One of the most popular game, "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" was published in 1984. Douglas Adams famous story about Arthur Dent, Ford Prefect, Tricia McMillan, the Vogons and last but not least Zaphod Beeblebrox is almost known from every IT nerd.
"Sorcerer", "Wishbringer" are also well made games, but less successful. A very weird story has "Leather Goddesses of Phobos", and later on Activision (which brought the company Infocom down) never re-issued a game collection with this very special text adventure.
A screen from Leather Goddesses of Phobos:
"Bureaucracy" is a satire of the real, bureaucratic world - very interesting.
One of the last ones are "Border Zone" and "Beyond Zork".
"Arthur" was the last title which was published by Infocom, so the story ends with it here.
If you're further interested what files you need and what interpreter version per game is need, visit http://wiki.herzbube.ch/index.php/Z-Machine ...
If you're interested in porting a Z-Code interpreter back to CP/M, try this Turbo PASCAL source INF.ZIP first. You can find other (not that Turbo PASCAL one) at ifarchive.org ...
CLICK ON A GAME NAME to download it - for CP/M computer only.