IF in the Wild - Unexpected mentions of IF in places not explicitly about IF

I was listening to a YouTube video while working today, when I unexpectedly heard a discussion involving Collossal Cave Adventure and what it spawned. The clip focuses on when he first mentions this, but the whole video is a fairly interesting discussion about how we classify games and how communities can form and splinter over these definitions (ahem, sounds familiar). Not everyday I encounter interactive fiction outside of these circles.

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Have another one to add. If anyone else comes across IF in the Wild, please feel free to share!

IF mentions are fairly common, like earlier they mention mainframe games like Colossal Cave Adventure and Zork, but I rarely come across mentions of Failbetter and Inkle in mainstream videos.

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I actually have a whole short series about Adventure games, IF, and genre to share today. Too many mentions to list and honestly interesting discussion about genre conventions and the future of the genre as we understand it. You know it goes deep into the navel gazing when it mentions Andrew Plotkin, Raph Koster, and David Shute in the same video. My kinda stuff.

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I don’t know if the intent of the thread is to focus on more substantial discussions found in unexpected places, but for something that’s literally just a mention, I was surprised to see this in a word game app:

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Nah, that is just a reflection of the type of media I typically consume combined with the fact that I was the only one to share any mentions up until now.

If you find IF in the Wild, in whatever form, feel free to share it!

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There’s also this, which is not a mention of IF, but a real thing that resembles IF: “Ghost apples”

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I’m currently reading Null States by Malka Older and one of the side characters is a huge parser game fan. Not something I expected to see in a sci-fi book set 70 or so odd years into the future, but fun!

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I would be super surprised if Malka Older isn’t in an IF community, maybe with a pseudonym.

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I wouldn’t either! It’s not a reference I would expect from someone not in the community.

(I assume you’re familiar with her work? She’s very good at sci-fi worldbuilding so it seems up your alley.)

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Oh, absolutely. I love her worldbuilding and the interesting consequences she explores as a result of certain technology developments. When I finally figured out why flamethrowers are so prevalent in Infomocracy, I had a visceral “aha” reaction, lol.

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Last night I re-watched Big for the first time in twenty years or so, and imagine my delight when it opens on Jack playing an old-school graphical parser game!

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I remember that! As a kid I kept trying to figure out what game that was, and was disappointed to learn they just made it up for the movie.

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They did? Oh man. I wanted to know which one it was too.
When I played my first few parsers, I remember noticing the similarity with the game from Big. If I recall correctly, the Big game was real time. He kept losing a boss fight because he couldn’t find or type the winning command fast enough.

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Apparently there is a fan-made version of it!

Yeah, his parents are yelling at him to take out the trash, so he’s distracted and loses the game lol. One of the (surprisingly few) woes of being a child that he experiences.

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I’ve noticed that in numerous places, references to Frotz and other interpreters appear as examples for using the Git source control suite. The Git manual pages are full of it. In particular, the giteveryday(1) manual page contains several branch and file names straight out of the Unix Frotz repository.

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Yeah, it was an odd combination of parser and point-and-click. It doesn’t exactly match any game model that was published in real life.

If we’re noting IF code examples, we shouldn’t forget this one from a “hacking screen” in Agents of Shield season 1:

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Because using the source code of the Git interpreter would be too confusing! (Note that the Git interpreter is several years older than the Git source control system.)

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