[New Game] Cryptozookeeper

Cryptozookeeper is a graphical text adventure written in Hugo 3.1. It’s available for download via the Internet Archive here:


(Grab cryptozookeeper.zip for the whole thing.)

A Windows Hugo terp is included, but I put together the links for the Mac and Linux interpreters at cryptozookeeper.com - thanks, and I hope you enjoy the game.

Robb Sherwin

A new Robb Sherwin game! Yey!

I think you just won $60 :slight_smile:


Haha! I was telling Jacq on the mud today that one of the silliest motivating factors was the IFDB link that just had the IntroComp version up. It did drive me a little crazy, but it was motivating nonetheless!

Woo; congrats on the release!

Downloading now via the pub’s glacially-slow and overloaded wireless. :slight_smile:

I was ready to start playing this, at last, but came to the realization that there are no graphics or sound in Gargoyle :neutral_face: The Linux “hewx” interpreter I downloaded doesn’t work, and doesn’t compile either. It seems it uses very outdated libraries.

I suppose there’s no way to play this on Linux? (Running in Wine has the usual ugly as hell font rendering, known to cause epilepsy.)

I know Johnny on the ifMud was looking at Hugo terps in Linux. I am going to ask him what he was doing to get it to go, and if he had graphics. I’ll post back here when I hear from him.

I have a statically linked version of the WXWindows version of the Hugo engine available.


Just download it, unzip it and you can use it to play games (it will not play any of the MP3 music, but you do get the graphics)

Maybe someday, when I get decent at programming, I can work on a new version of the 'terp so it’ll run on a modern linux distro.

Thanks for the tips. I ended up running it in Windows inside VMWare under Linux. Overkill, but I simply want to play this The Way It’s Meant To Be Played :mrgreen:

I’m toying around with the idea of doing a new Hugo 'terp port myself :stuck_out_tongue: It’s a shame if Linux people can’t play Robb’s games in their full glory.

I also heard that it would work in Wine. Now, I use Ubuntu at work every day, but not to play games. (Confidential to future employers: not to make them, either.) So if a suggestion of Wine is like saying “Tempest plays great through M.A.M.E.,” I’ll understand if told to kill myself. No harm, no foul there.

I used what Gerynar linked to, and I was able to get Crypto to run without having to do much of anything else. I was sort of anticipating this problem because of what Johnny said he went through, so the page on archive.org does split the game up so a Linux user doesn’t have to download the 510MB of music files that aren’t playable on that operating system at the moment. It’s been my understanding that the Mac and Linux ports may very well get looked at my Kent Tessman, and cleaned up again. So that’s cool.

(Now I need to find someone with an Amiga and see how that Hugo for Amiga port looks!)

Also, I found that, to make the graphics look right, I needed to do the following through the terp:
Options->Fonts->Fixed Width-> and then any font, but with a size of 8. The spacing on the top windows is then good. I should probably note this on the game’s page.

Oh, it happened to you too? I thought it was some weird combination of my fonts and desktop resolution, the graphics filled up the entire screen and rendered the game unplayable.

OK, it took me a whole week, but I finally wrote one :mrgreen:

More info in this thread.

Version 1.03 is up. Nikos found that the game could get into a state where only a subset of songs would be rotated through. If you already grabbed the 580MB archive, you just need the individual czk.hex file, as the graphics and sound blobs haven’t changed.

Download link at the Internet Archive: http://www.archive.org/details/Cryptozookeeper

Oh dear… do the savegames for the old version still work for this new version?

EDIT - No they don’t. :stuck_out_tongue: What exactly am I missing out on by playing the original release?

If you like hearing the same 4 songs over and over and over again, with no means of escaping repeat-hell, then you can stick to the original release :mrgreen:

This is a good example of why one should play with command recording enabled (not transcript recording, but only command recording.) That way, you can “restore” your game without needing the save file. You just replay the recorded commands:

[choose a file to record to]

[choose a file to play back from]

Going to the same game position after a game update, becomes possible that way (if of course the new version doesn’t change something that would give different results for the recorded commands.)

And if the game doesn’t have random elements, which this one does. And if during my gameplay session I don’t save/restore a LOT, which I did and often do.

At any rate, if I did that with every game that would mean I would have no faith in the author to have provided a bug-free experience. If I can’t do that, I’ll either be waiting eternally for the optimum game-fix or just wonder about whether this or that is a bug, a feature or just some crazy s**t the author cooked up. That would be beta-testing, and I swore off beta-testing because it’s too much like work and not enough as fun as game-playing.

Yeah, REPLAY just doesn’t work out of the box. It helped here though. I had to manually intervene and edit the text file. But still faster than playing from the beginning; at worst, the replay file serves as a guide to play through in a few minutes.

I wonder why no one ever bothered writing extensions for different IF systems that implement a non-VM save/restore (like you get with non-IF games; imagine if you had to restart every time there was a patch to Oblivion or Grand Theft Auto…)

Nikos explained it, but I’ll go into more detail, perhaps some future IF developer can learn from my mistake here.

So, there’s 70 songs in the game. Most of them came from me listening to hours of Creatve Commons-licensed music with tags like “ambient” and “electronica” and “no vocals.” (An aside: there was nothing more frustrating in developing this game than clicking on a song with the “ambient” tag and hearing vocals. I also had some words when this happened.)

A couple songs were from the band Butterworth. Butterworth is made up of Gerrit Hamilton (who played Vest) and Andy Highsmith. The songs - “Puppy” and “Pursed Lips” had vocals, but if you listen to them, they quickly reveal themselves as the sort of songs where you’re not really focusing on the vocals, as they tend to repeat a bit.

Those two songs do crack me up, so I thought it would be good compromise if the game only ever played them once. This was before Jon Blask encouraged me to make the >fastforward command. Anyway, so we’re not here all day, I wanted, when “Puppy” and “Pursed Lips” came on twice, for the game to pick one of four other songs. The error I introduced is that once that condition came to be true, it would choose from one of those four songs for the rest of the game.

Since >fastforward was in there anyway, I just removed all the code to check for duplicates of the Butterworth songs, and we should be good to go for 1.03.

If I were ever to make a long game again, which I won’t, ha ha, I would at least implement some sort of checkpoint system just for this. I get why Graham, Mike and Kent didn’t put cross-patch saves in place, but it wouldn’t be too much effort for me to dump what the player is carrying, and the states of various variables into a file, and then implement a new kind of restore that picks you up and populates the various variables for the game’s state. I do a lot of checks on “is visited” in my games, so I’d have to find a way to dump that info for every room in the game, but it seems to not be too difficult if the game were large enough to make it worthwhile. Wish I had considered it in 2006. :frowning:

great name for the game!