Just saying Hi and after a bit of advice.

Hi all.
Don`t know how active this forum is so here goes.

I have just joined this forum after re-discoverying text adventure games after years away from them.

Firstly a little history about my past dealings with text adventure or as it seems to be called these days IF. My first ever IF was on an old Spectrum the rubber key version and the very first IF game that I can remember playing was called Quest Adventure, I spent hours playing that one and never did complete it :frowning:. After that I played several others of which the names I can`t remember. After that I was without a computer for several years and latter got a Commedore 64 and I returned to playing several IF games again the most notable being The Hobbit. I then when several years again without a computer and now I have a Windows XP based PC have just dicovered that IF are to a lesser extent still around.

Now for the advice part.

Like I said I have just re-discovered IF`s and so far I have downloaded the TADS3 interpreter and was wondering is anyone can suggest if I would need any others as the TADS seem to be quite well cartered for. Also will be downloading a z-code interpreter for Windows.

I Also have a Palm Zire 71 PDA running PalmOS v 5.2.1. for which I have installed Frobnitz which comes with z2pdb.exe so I can convert z-code IFs so I can play them on the Zire. Is this the best Palm IFs program?

Now for the crunch question. I like my IF`s to be big the bigger the better which IF currently is the biggest as in the most locations to visit making the longest to complete.

Think thats it for now will wait to see I get a responce before asking anymore questions.

Cap Man (Keith)


first of all, I think frobnitz is a great interpreter for palm. But I think, the zire has a high res screen, so you could use Kronos, too, which has the advantage to also play the magnetic scrolls adventures (which are not freeware, I should add).

As for big games, I think Curses might be your cup of tea. It will be a long time to traverse it, because it is almost absurdly difficult. Another huge game is anchorhead, which I like much better. It has a great story, lots of locations and puzzles, that are mostly very fair.

The largest game to date seems to be 1893: A world’s fair mystery. I didn’t play it, but it has a couple of hundred locations and is well reviewed. A version with graphics cost 20 $, but without them, the game is freeware.


Thanks Bob for you advice. I have downloaded Kronos and have it installed on my PDA memory card but still have Frotnitz as well as for some reason I can`t z8 files to install to the memory card so I convert them and use them on Frotnitz.

I have also now installed on my PC TADs3, HUGO 3.1, WINDOWS FROTZ, GLULXE 1.3 and GARGOYLE so I think that will just about cover most things.

Also I found a great mapping program called IFMapper which look very promising for mapping the IF`s. Just got to figure out how to use it.

Cap Man (Keith).

Can’t help you with that. But I just thought of something that could help you with your search for big games. On carouselchain.com/if/index.php there are ratings for text adventures. The statistics give the possibility to sort the games by playtime. I don’t know how reliable that is, but at least anchorhead, curses and 1893 are in the section “more than 20 hours”.


 Gargoyle alone should cover most of it, *if* it's okay for you to play most modern IF games without graphics. I have to admit, though, that it does play Magnetic Scrolls games with graphics pretty well, as well as some Glulxe games. It's still a good idea to install other 'terps like the Hugo Engine and the HTML TADS Player, as they render the graphics that come with the game quite better than Gargoyle.
Is that the one that requires installing the [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ruby_programming_language]Ruby runtime[/url] to run?

Yes thats the one and so far I have had no problems with it.

Cap Man (Keith).

IMHO, one of the problems with the IF scene right now is that authors are pretty much encouraged to write nothing but bite-sized games. It seems like if you want something you can really sink your teeth into you have to go back a few years, and then of course you start running into things like mazes and just generally unfair puzzles, which are a little hard to stomach for a person spoiled on modern, ‘user friendly’ IF like myself.

But anyway, as for recommendations, I suggest you take a look at springthing.net and browse through the archives, if you haven’t already. (And why not try the newest games as well, since there’s still a couple of weeks to vote on them.)

Of course even games in a comp where long adventures are encouraged are pretty short compared to some of the classics. So I’ll also go ahead and recommend The Mulldoon Legacy and it’s sequel, The Mulldoon Murders. I had a lot of fun with both, though I’d seriously suggest keeping a walkthrough handy.

well, welcome back. Though it’d be so much more pleasing if it was a complete novice coming to IF for the first time! You know, new blood and stuff…

There are quite a few, specially from earlier times. Curses and Jigsaw, by Graham Nelson of Inform fame, are two wonderful IF masterpieces from the days of IF rebirth and are pretty big as well. Savoir-Faire, All Roads, Anchorhead, The Legend Lives… so many to remember. But as someone warned, most IF these days can be completed in about 2 hours. Think of them as short stories rather than novels.

And if you’re looking for the mindless maze wandering and treasure collecting from the old days, forget it. Modern IF is more about good story, compelling narration, believable interaction, fair puzzles and role-playing rather than plain score-oriented games.