Mainframe game Warp

I have added the giant Mainframe game Warp, started in 1979 by Rob Lucke and Bill Frolik to IFDB. 1216 points and 49 treasures to solve in what is probably the biggest IF game ever written. Previously it was only playable by a Telnet session via a mainframe HP 3000 which was rather buggy. Thanks to Dan Hallock, who has taken away the difficulty of copying the binary files to the SimH emulator. He has cleaned up the file, more than doubled the available disk space, added kermit to copy the files across, the adventure game, and a menu to make it a little easier to play the games.

www.​xyfyx.​com/​files/​hp3000Sim.​zip 2019-08-26 09:23 38M contains HP3000 emulator kermit and game file.

In this distribution, the HP3000 version of kermit is in TOOLS.TRICORE. Just RUN KERMIT.TOOLS.TRICORE to run it on the HP3000 side.

When you use HELLO MGR.GAMES, you’ll see a menu: Just type the number for the game you want followed by enter.

The games also include Mystery Mansion and Trek73.


Roger Durrant


I got this running in a terminal window. This is so cool! Takes me back to my undergrad days in the 70s when I played Trek on a teletype machine!

Thank you

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That’s interesting. Did your school not have PLATO? I ask, because I know that Trek was ported to PLATO in '70 or '71, which made use of the teletype unnecessary. I missed getting to play it then by two weeks…got stuck playing tic-tac-toe (which crashed, of course) instead. I do remember watching someone else playing something via teletype, but that paper wasn’t free, for some odd reason.

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My pleasure. A big thank you from me to Jason Dyer as well; it was reading his excellent blog Renga In Blue that put me on to Warp and the other HP 3000 games in the first place. He plays through as many old games in chronological order as he can get his hands on.

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Do you happen to know if the source for Warp is available anywhere?

According to Jason Dyer (and a few people on the old Google groups forum) the authors never released the source code and as far as I know noone has been able to contact them.

They do mention in the notes to Warp that it consists of about 17000 lines of Pascal, the database is about 6000 lines of ASCII.

Bill Frolik had an address as of 1983 but this is long defunct.

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I attended a very small university in Florida back in the seventies. I was a science major not in IT. We were required to learn Fortran for our science curriculum. Fortran was all punch card at the time. The actual computers were hundreds of miles away at Northeast Regional Data Center (NERDC) and belonged to the state. We would turn in a stack of cards and then return to the computer center the next day to get printouts. I started hanging out at the computer center. Initially, there were several teletypes connected to NERDC. The in crowd knew of games and we would play them at night on the sly. After that, a few IBM Selectric typewriter terminals were installed. We still weren’t “permitted” to do anything other than homework but it wasn’t so bad since we supplied our own paper. Then two experimental CRT terminals were installed. They were very unreliable but fun to play with. Later on I took courses in C and Unix for fun. Dr. Anderson had taught at the Naval Academy and hooked us up with Owl Gore’s “internet”. Instant messages across the ether via Unix and gopher “web” surfing. Fun!

I just remember using fan fold 14" paper playing Trek…

Those were the days.

I must admit I missed out on that generation. My first pc was a 48K Atari 800 that I bought in Romford in 1983. With a 1050 disc drive it was £850 which would be about £2,900 pounds or nearly $3,500 dollars today.

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The cost was the part that wasn’t the good ol’ days. Not only was hardware very expensive, software was also VERY expensive. It did come in nice hard cases with ring binders and slick paper. In the 70s and 80s, trying to set up a small business with automation was not for the faint of heart.

Shareware, the pre-cursor to gpl started us in the right direction…

Anyone remember Myst?


Wikipedia claims that Warp was translated to C. Does anyone know anything about that?

I see what you mean David. I quote:

“Circa 2003, Lucke also ported the code to ANSI C, initially for HP-UX, and later for Linux."

I have never seen any evidence of that. The writers were most reluctant to give any publicity to their game, which is odd as they laboured over four years on it.

There are a few messages regarding the game on the IF forum going back to 1983 but that appears to be about it.

For instance this from Doug Parsons in 1994.!search/Warp$20hp3000/comp.sys.hp.mpe/YBtAaEPX37I/MGXqfxdPk1MJ

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This has now been made even easier to run and is available at

To run on Windows, run the batch file “hp.bat”, which will start the emulator. At the prompt, enter “HELLO MGR.GAMES” to log in and run the games menu.

Thanks so much for this! I just got it working - so nice to see the world of Warp again. I’m interested to see if it’s the same version I played back in the 80s. I might also create a more detailed walkthrough and maps.

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My map is massive on Trizbort Russell. And I’ve just realised I’ve got to go back to near the start as I didn’t take the mink slippers from the roof of the Warp Building!

Oh, how do I find that map? I’d be interested in comparing it to mine… yes, you’ll have to go back to the start once in a while to see if you can follow the right steps such as getting into the vault at 10 before it closes forever…

Send me your email Russell and I’ll posi it on. It may be a bit inaccurate and it’s on Trizbort.