Zcode and Glulx debuggers

I seem to recall around 2000 there was discussion of debuggers for Zcode and maybe Glulx akin to gdb. That is, you can trace the execution of Inform code line by line, set and clear breakpoints, and watch variables among other things. What was actually produced? The best I can come up with is something called “Inform Explorer”, but its website was last touched in 2001 and the downloads are all missing.

After I thought I fixed the HER vs HER problem reported in Inform 6.12 lib - Fatal Error, I discovered there’s more and the task of ferreting where the runtime error occurs is much more difficult than last time.

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Following up, the HER vs HER problem is now fixed. It turns out that I fixed the problem only halfway. Still it remains that an interactive debugger is needed.

The Visual Studio Code extension for ZIL includes a source-level debugger for the Z-machine with breakpoints, watches, etc.:

The debugger is based on ZLR, and if you extract the binary (or just build ZLR from source), you can use it as a standalone console debugger for Inform games.

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Very interesting. I’ll have to look at packaging this up sometime soon and/or porting it to some Unix IDEs.

VS Code is a Unix IDE… :wink: