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Adventure Games: An Overview

by Paul Gobes

The first computer adventure game on the HP 3000 was called Adventure. Hundreds of other games have been developed using the basic concepts of this game, including Mystery Mansion and Warp on the HP 3000. Players get points for taking treasure out of the colossal cave to the house at the end of the road. The game was an incredible time waster on the HP 3000. Adventure seems pretty tame compared to today's games, but can still be a lot of fun. Hint: In Adventure, an unexpected animal drives the snake away and it is possible to kill the dragon.

See also our hints for Windows Solitaire and Minesweeper.

Castle Wolfenstein

This was the first of the violent, 3-D shareware games for the PC. Wolfenstein made the player a part of the action and movement around the castle was visually realistic. The screen shows what the player sees as he moves left, right, ahead and back. Action consists of opening doors, entering rooms, finding treasures and secret passageways but mainly in killing Nazis and anything that moves. There's enough blood spurting around to make this the game unpopular with mothers. But it can run on a 386 with only 4 MB of memory, whereas DOOM does not.

DOOM Shortcuts

In the shareware version of DOOM there are certain magic words that definitely tilt things in your favor. Here are a few that my 12-year-old son uses the most. Just type in the code, no need to press Enter, a message displaying the new mode should appear at the top of the screen.

    iddqd       {... gotta have it, it's like God mode     }
    idbehold    {Then select one of 6 options, best are:   }
       L        {for extra light amplification             }
       S        {for beserker strength                     }
       I        {for partial invisibility                  }

    iddt        {once for a full map                       }
                {second time also displays moving objects  }

These tips were taken liberally from the "official" DOOM FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) file. Which also answers the much asked "Where can I get the chain saw on episode one?", "How can I get the 'Barney' version of DOOM?" and "How powerful is the ammunition on a BFG9000?". To get this document through FTP, try ftp.uwp.edu in the directory /pub/msdos/games/id.


DOOM 2 is the reason that so many programs are released as shareware. The publishers release a short version as shareware to gain public acceptance. It takes off like a rocket (DOOM was voted the most popular shareware game of 1994), then the publishers can market a $60 product that will sell like hotcakes. DOOM 2 is better, however, because of its network features -- you can run it on four different PCs and see the other players in the game. It comes in two modes :"Co-operative" and "Deathmatch." Usually people play it co-operatively at first (that is, "us" against the "bad things") but quickly learn to enjoy blasting their co-workers instead. One final warning though, do not play this game with adolescents. They have faster reactions, see better, and remember all the tricks and traps. You will spend most of your time on the floor, dead.


SimCity/2000 (aka SC2k) is a complex game where you slowly develop cities from rudimentary building blocks. It's the type of game best played first with someone else who's already studied the manual. The most fun my son had was flooding the city when the population started revolting. So, even with quality, educational games like this one, it is possible to get some warped enjoyment.

Paul Gobes

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