Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Dungeon (1975)

This post is going to be a short one, folks.  The business of finding games from the 1970s can be a tricky one, and this is my first encounter with this problem on the blog.  You would think from the snazzy title screen above that I got this game running, but no such luck.  Try as I might, I can't get it to do anything but display that screen.  It is rather good, though, isn't it?

So what do we know about Dungeon?  It was designed in 1975 by John Daleske, Gary Fritz, Jon Good, Bill Gammel and Mark Nokada.  This site describes it as a 3-D first-person maze with multiple players, but also says that it was incomplete.  It's described as a predecessor to Moria, which is handy, as that's the game I'll be tackling next.

Another game, also called Dungeon, was designed by Don Daglow for the PDP-10 mainframe.  Daglow is a pretty big deal in the early days of gaming, and his description of the game sounds pretty amazing: apparently it had "ranged and melee combat, lines of sight, auto-mapping and NPCs with discrete AI".  Sadly, the PDP-10 system doesn't seem to be running anywhere on the internet, so this game appears to be lost to the ages.

Next up I'll be tackling Moria, which thankfully is available to play on PLATO.  Hopefully it's as surprisingly enjoyable as pedit5 and dnd have been.

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