Zork Trilogy

Adventure 1986 Dos Infocom Multimedia novel

First rate adventure collection

If you have ever been curious about the interactive fiction genre, then this is the perfect chance to experience three of the best games the field ever produced, the epic Zork adventures. Produced by Infocom, who also turned out greats like Planetfall, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and The Lurking Horror, the Zork games mix imaginative quests with clever puzzles and thoroughly well realised worlds to create some truly memorable gaming experiences. The three games are all set in the same fantasy-style universe and feature twisting storylines of underground empires, lost treasures and mysterious wizards and which are all captivating to greater or lesser degrees. Being text adventures, the games do not use graphics and instead rely on written descriptions of scenes, characters and objects and with players using a complex and sophisticated parser system to input commands which allows them to manipulate their environment, interact with other characters and solve the myriad inventory-based puzzles that stand between them and success. Any such game lives and dies on the quality of its writing but fortunately these games are some of the best, with descriptions that are succinct, witty and evocative. The parser system too is clever too, gradually evolving through the series to understand more complex commands, while the puzzles are generally logical, challenging yet not usually unfair or frustrating. The first game feels a bit of a treasure-hunting dungeon crawl today but is still enjoyable and while the second one is slightly disappointing, the third one returns the series to high status. However, when taken together as in this package they make for great entertainment for anyone with the imagination to explore the world of Zork.

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