With limited sound, simple graphics, and tiny amounts of computing power, the first games on home computers would hardly raise an eyebrow in the modern era of photorealism and surround ... See full summary »
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With limited sound, simple graphics, and tiny amounts of computing power, the first games on home computers would hardly raise an eyebrow in the modern era of photorealism and surround sound. In a world of Quake, Half-Life and Halo, it is expected that a successful game must be loud, fast, and full of blazing life-like action. But in the early 1980s, an entire industry rose over the telling of tales, the solving of intricate puzzles and the art of writing. Like living books, these games described fantastic worlds to their readers, and then invited them to live within them. They were called "computer adventure games", and they used the most powerful graphics processor in the world: the human mind. Rising from side projects at universities and engineering companies, adventure games would describe a place, and then ask what to do next. They presented puzzles, tricks and traps to be overcome. They were filled with suspense, humor and sadness. And they offered a unique type of joy as ... Written by Nocseiz

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Text adventures, in High Definition See more »

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26 March 2010 (USA)  »

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Over 130 hours of interviews were shot for the movie. See more »

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Gliding Over Mountains
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Written by Zoë Blade
Performed by Zoë Blade
Courtesy of Transistor Sounds
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User Reviews

 
Jason Scott's masterpiece of oral history of interactive fiction
22 April 2012 | by (Ann Arbor, MI) – See all my reviews

While Jason's work to preserve the viewpoints and images of early creators before it's too late is commendable, I watched it with a set of friends who never saw the games in action. For them, it was just odd and a little intriguing, but as we watched the whole 90+ minutes in non- interactive mode there was boredom in the room. Not having experienced the thrill of the chase, it meant not that much to them.

However, myself having experienced many of the early games in my teens and early 20s, it was a great look back at what was an obsession. Granted, I never finished most interactive fiction games because I might be willing to put 5 or 6 hours into it but not 20 or 30 hours so I guess that makes me stupid.

I agree with the other reviewer who said there were opportunities missed to link it with games that evolved out, such as King's Quest, which were a hybrid of text and graphics. Why the bias against that? Also, to be fair, remember David Ahl's "BASIC Computer Games" which had the text of some 300 text games to type in. Many of them, such as Hunt The Wumpus, contained many Adventuresque elements.

Even so, I applaud Jason for having the tenacity of going after his early heroes and definitively linking Collosal Cave system to Adventure for all time.


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