Spring Thing 2012 is underway

The Spring Thing 2012 games are now available for download. There are
three games this year:

The Rocket Man from the Sea, by Janos Honkonen (Z-code)
Sleuth, by Scott Greig (Quest)
The White Bull, by Jim Aikin (TADS 3)

You can find out everything you need to know at:

You’ll find the links to download the games on that page.

Anyone who plays the games and is willing to follow the voting rules
on the site may serve as a judge for the competition by voting on the

The deadline for voting is 11:59 PM EDT, Sunday, May 6, 2012. Winners
will be announced soon afterwards.

The details on how to submit your vote are at:

Feel free to contact me if there are any problems.


To all the players, have fun! To all the entrants, good luck!


Can you make the Quest game (at least) available online through the Webplayer? It’s my understanding that the offline interpreter for the latest generation of Quest games doesn’t run on a Mac.

It’s heartening to see a Quest game in there, truly.

Actually, it’s a pity there were only three entries, but I like the diversity.

Nor Linux, so I’ll second the Quest hosting request.

I just found this site:
where Quest games can be uploaded and played for free, though you have to login to be able to save, but I think that’s usual…?

Edit: Never mind. My browser was displaying a cached copy of the page.

Jim, those two links go to the same page.

Important: One game, The Egg and the Newbie, was initially left out of Spring Thing 2012 due to an error by me.

This has been corrected. The files on the Spring Thing site are now up to date. The files at the IF Archive will be updated shortly.

Please download and play The Egg and the Newbie.

Judges’ ballots will not be complete, and will not be counted, unless they play all available games they can, including The Egg and the Newbie.

The game can be downloaded from the ST site:

Ouch!! Never seen that happen before.

Are reviews allowed during ST?

from the rules:

“Voters are allowed to discuss the games during the judging period, but are requested to clearly mark posts which discuss the games, for the benefit of those who want to avoid spoilers and having their scores influenced.”

so i guess that’s a yes. i’m interested in what you think about the games!

I’ll review only if I succeed in playing most of them. The quest game may be a problem, although I’m very curious about it.

Thx for the support, anyway [emote]:)[/emote]

Hello there! I’m the author of the Quest game, Sleuth. I asked Greg about having a web playable version as an alternative, and it was discussed among the other contestants and the consensus was that it should not be allowed. This does make sense considering the rules state that the games aren’t allowed to be updated during the competition, and it would be almost impossible for anyone to really enforce that with a browser-based version of the game.

So as it stands, I will not be able to make the game available through the textadventures.co.uk website until after the competition. Apologies to those of you not running windows. If I’d thought about it in advance, I could have converted the Quest source using Alex’s Quest/JS converter, and then packaged it as an Adobe AIR app that it would run on Windows, Mac and Linux and in the future that is likely what I will do. Perhaps bootcamp or wine is a possible, albeit not idea, solution in the meantime?

Does WINE work well with Macs now? I’d sort of been under the impression that it wasn’t so hot with Macs as opposed to Linux. If it does work I should give it a try, although it’s a short distance to the rabbit hole of all those PC games I’ve never been able to play…

Presumably the “no updates” rule would not be threatened if the game were hosted on a server the author has no write access to, though.

tove> That’s a pretty good idea actually, and maybe that’s something that could be considered for future comps? You should suggest it to Greg and see what he says.

Sigh. Retro. It’s 2012, and the way to stimulate interest in the competition is not “to play the games, download 4 different interpreters”.

It’s not hard to imagine an IF system which was only available via a browser, and didn’t have a downloadable component at all. Indeed, such systems already exist - good job nobody submitted an entry using Undum, I suppose?

Furthermore any downloadable software can also update itself over the internet without a judge being aware of it, so “no web versions” doesn’t even enforce the rule in the first place. So, a good job nobody submitted an entry that was a Windows EXE (as in 2009), I suppose?

Maybe it’s just me but the whole online play thing has never been of much appeal. Sure, I can see the advantages of it – much easier than downloading an interpreter, no need to install software, works on pretty much any operating system – but I still find myself reluctant to use it. Given the choice between downloading a game or playing it online and I’ll download it every time.

I do prefer “download” over “play online”… but in this case I just downloaded a no use file. [emote]:)[/emote]

And… uhm… Alex, are you suggesting we drop TADS and Inform for the more web-friendly Undum? I don’t see this happening… And I don’t see the White Bull or RocketMan etc working in Undum. Undum is cool, but it’s just something different. Different to Quest, also.

Er, where did I suggest that? Games created with both those systems can be played online, no?

You actually didn’t but it sounded like that to me. At least that the quest game should have been done in Undum.

Sorry for misreading.