eaten by a grue

For whatever reason, I never played a game that has become almost legendary in the computer world. The game I’m referring to?


It’s mentioned in all sorts of places, like UserFriendly, Mark’s account of a Windows XP installation (see #56), and even in Eric Raymond’s jargon dictionary. In spite of its pervasiveness, I had never played it until a few days ago.

I was able to play thanks to a site about Infocom, a selection of game files and ap2inf to convert them. I not only played Zork, but Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and since I have read the book now, it made a lot more sense.

Anyway, now that I’ve played Zork, I have learned firsthand the deathly ill that is a Grue in the dark. It was fun to experience what are fond memories of others, for the first time.


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  1. grues. babblefish. sweet memories… (of wasting a LOT of time)

    Comment by Will on December 20, 2004 @ 2:52 pm
  2. Umm, I don’t see how to actually run the file. I catted the dsk files to one file and ap2inf’d it and tried other stuff too, but it won’t give me a good binary.

    Comment by Cameron on December 20, 2004 @ 7:21 pm
  3. I’m finally going to read it. I got it from someone at a Bookcrossing Meetup last week. My husband is reading it this week (it’s been awhile for him) and when I get back in town, I’m going to tackle it.

    Comment by Renee on December 20, 2004 @ 11:36 pm
  4. You don’t actually run the file, you run jzip on the file that ap2inf produced. I’ll e-mail you what I used.

    Comment by dan on December 21, 2004 @ 9:28 am
  5. Oh my yes, I spent many hours playing text adventure games. If you liked those, visit for lots more. I once tried to write my own IF using ALAN; learning the programming language was easy – it was coming up with a good story I had trouble with!

    Comment by Meredith on December 21, 2004 @ 11:19 am

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