OpenBook v2 - an old/new interpreter you might like to poke

Related blog post:

Almost a decade ago, I wrote a 3D UI for Frotz. I guess that’s something which probably doesn’t make a whole lot of sense at all until you see a screenshot of it…

The idea was to make and sell visually appealing educational games that drove up literacy and problem-solving skills. The business of growing up and getting a proper job eventually led to my dropping the project, but looking back on it - it still seems like a fun, viable, idea.

I recently wrote it up in a blog post, which you can find here:

That looks interesting, and very neat !

How is the Status Line handled, though? Do you print the score and the number of turns at the top of each page of the book? (I guess they are the most “gamey” aspects of IF though, and do not really have a literary equivalent.)

Looks very cool!

Just a correction on your blog post: The VM is the z-machine. Inform is a language (or series of languages, of which only Inform 6 and Inform 7 have been publicly available) that can compile to z-machine files; they also can compile to another VM, glulx, which allows for larger projects. But the original Infocom z-machine games were written in another language, ZIL.

“Dates back to 1976” refers to text adventures themselves, not to the z-machine or Inform. The z-machine itself dates back to 1979, making it one of the first virtual machines!

So, Inform and the z-machine are related but distinct.

Correction correction: Inform 5 was public and is still available. I don’t know if any of the previous versions were ever released.

All the versions of Inform (through 6) were released on the IF Archive. However, 5.2 is the earliest that still exists, as far as I know.

At one point I dug up all the RAIF announcements, Inform 1-5; they’re linked on IFWiki.

So were the previous versions just removed as new ones came in? Are 1-4 permanently lost? Would be a shame if that were true.