Necrocomp - The results

Feast your royal jellies upon the results of Necrocomp!

The three highest scorers are:

  1. 756 - @Dannii
  2. 695 - DBowser (from the Andromeda Acolytes Discord)
  3. 84 - doc-holiday (from the Andromeda Acolytes Discord)

It was close at the top because the two at the top both found what we’ll call The Treant Exploit. However, I can tell you that you can win the game and score 600+ without any exploits, since that’s how I did it before I ran this competition.

Dannii, I will contact you about your prize choices.

I hope you all had some fun, even those swatted down with zero points.

Now, I’d like to tell you all something about this competition (and the other two).

It was difficult to find a large, challenging text adventure to use in this competition that had a lot of scoring variability and for which no walkthroughs existed on the internet. I mean REALLY difficult. And I didn’t do this once. I had to come up with three competitions on my Discord that would play to similar circumstances.

I knew no-one had identified the highest possible score in Captain Verdeterre’s Plunder, so it became comp one. I made comp two, Napier’s Cache, a first-past-the-post comp. It has no scoring, and I chose it because it would introduce text adventure newbies to a story based game, thus grooming them for Andromeda Acolytes.

Then, being the only person I knew who knew about Necron’s Keep, it became my third choice. I was unable to reach the author re: this competition I’ve run. I see he put out two calls for beta testers for the game, that were separated by eight years, here on In spite of the game’s not insignificant outstanding bugginess, I think everyone who’s now spent major time with it can see what an impressive creation it is in the detail, tech and D&D CRPG stakes.

So I feel like a thanks we could give to the game, and indirectly to its author, would be to give it a rating on IFDB (Necron's Keep - Details) to show we played it. Because when I see that a game like this has only one rating (two shortly - my review for it will reappear. I hid it during the comp), well, I just want more people to know about it and play it. It’s a reminder of the unheralded spirit of creativity that something this impressive seemed to be going unseen, like so much can.

A reminder that my Andromeda Acolytes open beta is playing on Steam from July 30 to August 2 (press the Request Access button on the Steam page to join). The demo will be available off Steam from August 3 onwards, when the Kickstarter launches.



Thanks for putting on the comp! I’ve been in bed most of the week with a sinus infection so I needed something to do and it was a fun time (the comp, not the infection) [FUN side note: I haven’t been able to achieve deep sleep in over 72 hours now, it’s starting to mess with me]. Necron’s Keep reminded me of playing something like Shadowgate back in the day, albeit with a Sumerian flavor that made for some interesting reading. It has its jank, yes, but it also has its flourishes and once I had the combat and spells figured it I really got into it. I appreciated what I played, but I knew there had to be more.

I admit to two things in my playthrough: I did get stuck trying to figure out the magic portal in the great hall. Was there something in the dragon tome about it? I kept looking but nothing popped out at me. By the time I felt I’d tried everything I could with it, I’d also figured out how to grind up my score and thought maybe I’d get access to it at a higher level or something, but I guess not. I also admit I got cocky when Wade mentioned “someone” had “smashed” Necron’s Keep, and decided I wouldn’t go back and pad my score any further with the Treant Exploit, since I had already reached “max level” for the game [I’m DBowser on Discord, stringwizard here].

It’s funny, eventually after hitting a “winning” ending despite never getting into the inner keep, my mind was kinda like, “I guess that was it. Hm,” and started trying to invent answers for how or why there was no encounter with Necron and what an ‘unusable’ magic portal suggested. But if anyone would care to share with me here or via DM the solution to the magic portal business, I’d actually be curious to continue and finish the game.

Thanks again to @severedhand for hosting, and congratulations to @Dannii, doc-holiday, and all of the other competitors!


Now that a bunch of you have played (and presumably solved) ‘Necron’s Keep’, I wonder if one of you would be nice enough to add a map, hints, walkthrough and/or solution to CASA at :: CASA :: Necron's Keep.

I also noticed that IFDB has two links to the Glulx files, one to ‘Original Beta Version’ and one to ‘Version 5’, but they both link to the same release 5 file. Does anyone know the link to the first one? I had the release 2 file. Is that it? ifarchive only maintains the latest version (except for competition entries), so I’m guessing that the earlier release was overwritten by the later release.

Yeah, I think the author overwrote one, but I also think he sometimes put out a new version with the same release number, too. i.e. I have two ‘release 5’ files, but they have different serial numbers, showing they were built on different dates. I found this out by accident when I realised I was about to submit everyone to a version I hadn’t tried, then dug out my previous version.

I suddenly have no time to sort this out, but Garry, you keep the one you’ve got, and I’ll keep the two I’ve got. Or I can send them to you?

Re: walkthrough, incredibly (for me and walkthroughs) I did start to write one in 2021, but now it’s not going to get any attention for ages. The handy thing is I now have all these transcripts recording details of the game.

Yeah, I haven’t read all your transcript, complicated by the fact the recorder I used often rearranged segments chronologically, but there is a lot of game you haven’t reached. When I saw your huge score the first time, I assumed you had reached all that stuff to get the score, because I didn’t know about the Treant exploit yet.

I have a transcript of my complete playthrough I could send you. It would potentially be super spoilery (but maybe not! You could use it judiciously).

Re: the magic portal, it does get used eventually, but from the other side!


Unfortunately, both authors and archives are very bad at maintaining proper release numbering and release history. That makes it very hard for historians to track the development of the game and the current version.

I downloaded release 5, serial number 190114 from ifarchive. I’ll assume that’s the latest.

Ah, you never made it through the portal? I don’t feel too bad exploiting bugs to come out in front then. :wink:

Did you find the greenhouse?

You mean even higher than those on the high scores list?? It’s such a small game that I thought I’d brute forced it, only to be surprised by other people getting slightly more. I still wonder how they did it…

Sugarlawn is another great optimisation game, and the scope is so much broader. No doubt there are still higher scores to be obtained in it.

If I was to make one change to Necron’s Keep, it would be to make the sphere only heal combat damage, not strength reductions from casting. I think that would make it a much more interesting challenge.

I did not.

The game has quite a few room exits that aren’t mentioned in the room descriptions, so the in-game compass is quite helpful.