Trying to Contact Will Crowther

I’m writing this message in the hopes to bring to everyone’s attention that I am currently working on my sequel to the Colossal Cave Adventure game. Now, I’ve grown up playing this title as with dozens of others. It’s currently going to be in the style as the first but set for more novice players. I am honestly hoping that you all will play it and enjoy my art. I even wrote to Don Wood, the man who co-made Colossal Cave, and yet I’ve heard back from him. I’m trying in the hopes now to contact Will Crowther. I wish to ask for their blessing in doing so. As I respect both of them and if it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t have discovered this wonderful genre and community. Thank you.

A fitting time, since last year was the Year of Adventure to mark the 40th anniversary of Adventure.

Crowther & Woods’ original source code was effectively public domain, and in any case their tacit approval of innumerable ports and modifications over the years has long since eroded any copyright claim they might have on the game’s concept. Still, even if there’s no legal need to get their permission, it’s a nice gesture.

Crowther may be hard to track down, however; he retired from the computer industry in 1997 and tends to keep a low profile. The last person I know of to be in email contact with him regarding Adventure was Dennis Jerz, around 2007 for his excellent paper Somewhere Nearby is Colossal Cave: Examining Will Crowther’s Original “Adventure” in Code and in Kentucky. Dennis might be of assistance, but no guarantees.

Good luck with the project!