The list of the longest games ever

I know the lists of timing reviews by Mathbrush and this poll, but I asked for more info about experiences from players about that games.

This way has took me to some pages I didin’t know about eldest mainframe games. I have found Topologica, BBC Micro and Phoenix Mainframe has a lot of games that are listed, or not, in Ifdb but lack of download links working properly. It seems they are a bit outdated.

  • Jade.

Hey Jade,

Here’s the archive of BBC Micro games (subcategory Text Adventure). Most (all?) are playable in-browser, and very smoothly at that.

Complete BBC Micro Games Archive


Gotcha, I was mainly responding so people could add listed suggestions to the poll if necessary.

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Currently about 530 games to play

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I saw an interview where was said that if you spent 40 bucks for a infocom game you expect as many hours playtime.


About right for Trinity. Somewhat less for Wishbringer. I gave up on others, such as HHGTTG.

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Just wanted to add to this list (in some blatant self promotion) that my new game Never Gives Up Her Dead h the longest inform source code I know of outside of Flexible Survival. It’s at 360K words; when I downloaded and compiled Blue Lacuna’s source code, I found that that was slightly less.

But with Andromeda Acolytes coming up, it will likely surpass both!


In stark contrast, Penn and Teller designed a game called “desert bus” (which may not have been released) which could only be won by driving 8 hours in real time on a featureless lo res desert highway without drifting off the road.


I’m sure it was released in some form. There’s some people running it in marathon format for charity every year.


Oh, you don’t win - you get one point. The highest score anyone has gotten is apparently 3.

The Stanley Parable has, in one path, the Narrator asking you to playtest his game which requires hitting a key over and over for hours on end. You do get a special ending if you complete it, though…


60 hours from start to finish. I do have to add I played in testing mode, with annotated transcripts and back-and-forth PMs to the author. For a normal playthrough with occasional hints and without explaining your favourite salmon recipe in a transcript, you could probably complete the game in a third of my time.


Another “more than 20 hours” game get into the IF temple.


Hmmm…annotated transcripts…are those the kind of thing that might be posted one day, or are they private/intended for author only? They sound cool!


I very much enjoyed @rovarsson 's annotated transcripts! Perhaps when I get a few minutes I’ll share some blurbs…


If @rovarsson doesn’t mind, here are a few blurbs I got treated to as I read his transcripts of Prince Quisborne…

<>> * && Fierljeppen: traditional Fries (North Dutch) pole vaulting. Not meant to go high, but far (“fier”: far, “ljeppen”: jump, leap). Developed as a way for Fries people to cross the many ditches and canals in the area without building bridges everywhere.

<>> * && The best fierljeppers leap distances up to and over 20 metres far.

<>> * && I learned a recipe for salmon from my mother. They made it in college when they wanted to eat somethin fancy but simple. Cut salmon tail or filet into ± 8x5 rectangles. Place them close together in an oven tray. Insert half-slices of lemon or lime

<>> * && between the salmon pieces. Sprinkle generously with coarsely ground black pepper. Cover (and I mean cover, no sprinkling here) with chopped parsley. Pour whole-fat cream over the dish, taking care to soak the layer of parsley, until the cream rises

<>> * && to about half the height of the fish chunks. Don’t cover the tray with a lid. Put the dish in the oven at 180° for 20-30 minutes (depending on how you like the salmon cooked, I like it glassy in the middle so I heat it for 20m tops.)

<>> * && Eat with good bread or mashed potatoes.

<>> * && YUM!

<>> * && We went on holiday to Krakow a few years ago. Not far from the city, there are ancient salt-mines you can visit. Since the miners spent practically all their waking hours in these tunnels dug out of and underneath the hill,

<>> * && they carved statues of saints and personal etchings in the salt-rock. The most stunning feature is an entire underground church (not a humble chapel, a church the size of the church in my hometown.) carved and chiseled into the rock. Altar, pews,

<>> * && confession booths, intricate candelabra, statues of Mary and the Apostles, and of course a huge crucified Jesus above the altar. Simply stunning. I couldn’t breathe.

<>> * && Cow or horse manure actually smells quite pleasant to me. I grew up among farmers’ fields. Wheat and maize, fodderbeets (intended to be mashed and dried as winterfeed for the cows), potatoes, cabbages, leeks,… The farmer on the opposite side of the

<>> * && road is a dairy farmer who also grows some additional vegetables. The manure from his cows goes on the fields. This is a two-part process: early spring, the seeds are planted and they receive “wet” manure. This is the foul-reeking liquid parts of the

<>> * && cows’ faeces mixed with their urine. Horrible stench, but it makes the wheat grow like Jack’s beanstalk! Much more pleasant is late fall (around two weeks ago, actually, end of November). The “dry” manure is the more-or-less solid cow shit mixed 1/1

<>> * && with dry straw and spread like a blanket over the fields. The earth is then tilled (superficially plowed) so a thin layer of earth protects the manure from blowing or washing away by the weather. It’s left like this during winter so the “dry” manure

<>> * && can seep into the soil over the cold months. This is the long-term soil-care, as opposed to the powerful short-term growth serum that is the “wet” manure.

<>> * && Dry manure actually smells good. Warm, grassy, cozy. Like a vegetable burp from someone you really like. I mean, it’s still shit, but it’s a homey kind of shit. In our vegetable garden, we spread and tilled the dry manure a week ago, digging trenches

<>> * && at regular intervals so the rain doesn’t soak into the dung too much and acidifies the soil. Putting the ground into “winterbeds”, as it is called.

And then, of course, much thoughtful commentary on the specific scenes of the game as well…


Castle Ralf is indeed very large; the eponymous building had six floors I think and the largest single puzzle I have ever come across. It is also very good and very tough. My highest score is 190 out of 300 and I must try and revisit it soon. I would recommend it to anyone who likes tough old-fashioned puzzlers. It is reminiscent of the old Phoenix neural pounders with soft locks and grand guignol demises galore. If you have ever wanted to be eaten by alligators or a psychotic chihuahua (and let’s face it who doesn’t?) then give it a go.


I have restarted Castle Ralf yesterday after an interregnum of some four years and predictably discovered that I have forgotten most of it so it is like playing a new game. One caveat is that saving positions via DOSBox-X slots causes the game state to crash afterwards - however you can use the game’s own SAVE command multiple times and this works fine within the DOSBox-X environment.


Here are a few more that fit into the “Odyssean” category too:

Spheres of Chaos;


Zargo’s Castle;

Hermit’s Secret;

The Lost Crystal;



Adventure 770;



I forgot Weird Wood II:


And if you want to fiddle with a cobweb making machine (three settings of thick, medium and snap!) and an armour plate cutting device this is the link to the previously mentioned biggie Castle Ralf.