Background

You are Rowan of Bunglewood Downs, would-be thief and seeker of magic.

There's known to be a Cave of Magic deep in the forest of Bunglewood. The cave is not hard to find, but no one goes there for fear of being eaten by a troll. As no one's been there, no one knows for sure what's in the cave. It's rumoured to contain treasure, but if it contains treasure, why isn't it called The Cave of Treasure?

No, you suspect that the cave contains magic. There's only one way to find out for sure and that's to go there!

Goal

Your goal is to find The Cave of Magic, uncover its secrets and steal any magic that you find there. You are awarded 5 points for completing significant tasks. This gives an indication of your progress. The maximum score is 20 points. Each time you are awarded points, a short jingle plays, so make sure you have sound turned on.

Instructions

This is a traditional text adventure that was originally written for the Adventuron CaveJam, 31 August to 23 September 2019. See the jam page for the jam rules.

A text adventure is a form of computer game that presents you with a story. You take on the role of the main character in the story and control that character's actions. The story has a goal and you will need to solve puzzles in order to achieve that goal. The computer tells you where you are, what you can see and what's happening around you. You can then move around, examine the things you find and manipulate objects by telling the computer what to do using simple English commands.

Commands consist of a verb phrase, optionally followed by a noun phrase. Most commands can be abbreviated to a verb followed by a noun. For example, LOOK AT THE ROWING BOAT can be abbreviated to LOOK BOAT.

Movement

To move around, use commands like GO NORTH and GO SOUTH. You can move in any of the four cardinal compass directions, as well as UP and DOWN. To save typing, movement commands can be abbreviated to N, S, E, W, U and D. You can sometimes use other commands such as CLIMB, ENTER, JUMP or SWIM to move to another location. These will be reasonably obvious when the time comes.

Examining things

Make sure you EXAMINE everything you come across, even insignificant things like scenery and objects mentioned in room descriptions, as subtle hints and clues are scattered everywhere. To save typing, EXAMINE can be abbreviated to X. For example, EXAMINE TREE can be abbreviated to X TREE.

You can also try your other senses when it seems appropriate, e.g. SMELL TROLL, TOUCH WATER or LISTEN. Unlike EXAMINE, these actions aren't necessary to solve any puzzles, so don't feel obligated to use them.

Manipulating objects

Apart from examining things, most of your time will be spent manipulating objects. Use commands like GET or TAKE to pick up an object, e.g. GET STICK. Use commands like DROP or DISCARD to drop an object, e.g. DROP KNIFE. Use WEAR to wear something, e.g. WEAR POUCH. Use REMOVE to remove something that is already worn, e.g. REMOVE CLOAK.

To see what you are currently carrying and wearing, use INVENTORY (or I). As you are not a pack horse, you can only carry five items and wear two items at a time.

There are many other verbs that can be used to manipulate objects. These will be fairly obvious when the time comes. Common verbs include OPEN, CLOSE, EAT, DRINK, READ, DIG and so on.

Part of the challenge is working out what verbs to use in any given situation. Don't be scared to try anything. The game has well over 100 verbs, so if something doesn't work, try a synonym or try a different way of achieving the same thing. For example, if FEED BIRD doesn't work, try GIVE SEED.

Communicating with characters

You will encounter at least one character in the game. In addition to examining him, try verbs like TALK, GIVE and SHOW.

Advanced features

You can use IT or THEM to refer to the noun used in the previous command, e.g. EXAMINE BRANCH, GET IT, EXAMINE APPLES, GET THEM.

You can refer to multiple objects by separating the objects with AND, e.g. GET BRANCH AND KNIFE. Using IT and THEM in the next command will only refer to the last of those objects, e.g. EXAMINE IT will only refer to the knife.

You can use ALL or EVERYTHING to refer to all the appropriate objects with GET, DROP, PUT, WEAR and REMOVE, e.g. GET ALL to get everything in the current location, and DROP EVERYTHING to drop everything you're holding.

When using ALL, you can use EXCEPT or BUT to exclude some objects, e.g. DROP ALL EXCEPT HAMMER AND NAILS.

Finally, you can enter multiple commands on the same line by separating them with a comma or a period, e.g. UNLOCK DOOR. OPEN IT.

Other commands

Use LOOK (or L) to refresh the display.

Use VERSION to get the game version. Use ABOUT, CREDITS or INFO to get the game version plus some extra info about the game.

Use TURNS to see how many turns you've taken. Once you've solved the game, you should try to solve it in as few moves as possible. The number of turns taken does not include 'meta' commands such as SCORE, TURNS and LOOK.

Use SCORE to get your score. This is also shown in the status bar at the top of the screen as A/B, where A is your current score and B is the maximum score.

Use SAVE to save your progress. You can save up to three game states in separate slots. Use LOAD or RESTORE to restore a saved game. Alternatively use RAMSAVE and RAMLOAD to save and restore without needing to specify a slot number.

Use WAIT (or Z) to do nothing apart from pass the time.

Use GRAPHICS ON and GRAPHICS OFF to turn graphics on and off.

Most importantly, have fun and enjoy the game.

Keyboard shortcuts

If you are playing on a computer with a conventional keyboard, rather than a mobile device, you can press the up and down arrow keys to cycle through your past commands. This is handy if you want to repeat the previous command or correct a typo.

Use Page Up (PgUp) or Page Down (PgDn) to scroll through all the commands and responses since the last screen update.

You can also enter a few characters of a word, then press Tab to cycle through any words containing those characters. For example, enter EX then press Tab to change the word to EXAMINE. Press Tab again to get EXIT. Press Tab again to return to EX.

Credits

Game design, coding and graphics by Garry Francis.

Play testing by Chris Ainsley, Gareth Pitchford and Omid Haghgoo.

Delta 4 font designed by Fergus McNeill.

This game was prototyped in Inform 6, then ported to Adventuron. Adventuron was written by Chris Ainsley.

Learn to write your own text adventure with Adventuron. Visit the Adventuron web site for further details.

StatusReleased
PlatformsHTML5
Rating
Rated 4.0 out of 5 stars
(1)
AuthorGarry Francis
GenreInteractive Fiction
Tagsadventuron, text-adventure
Average sessionAbout a half-hour
LanguagesEnglish

Comments

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I cannot believe I don't even know how to make a fire with a dry branch, rock, and knife/steel.  I would never survive in the wilderness.  Hint?

I absolutely love your games, sir.

You've got the right idea, but you're missing one vital item. If you examined the troll, you would have noticed that he's wearing a pouch, but he won't let you take it. He's bigger and stronger than you, so you can't fight him. Once you get past the troll, he'll have his back to you. You can then take advantage of the situation and throw something heavy at him to knock him out.

Thank you for the kind comment. I'm glad you like them.

Thank you, Garry.

How did I not think that?!  I originally did the deed before (in front of him), but he told me to stop playing around or something...  I just didn't think of doing it behind his back.

Man, I really hope this is a long game, as in it'll take days, even weeks to finish (think back to Masquerade, Sherwood Forest, Scott Adams etc.).  Anyway this game really brings me back when graphic adv games were IT, and I am loving every second of this!  Thanks so much!

Sorry to disappoint you, but it's only a small game. This was my first Adventuron game and I only had two weeks to write it (although that was later extended to three weeks).

If you like a bigger game with graphics, you might enjoy 'The Witch's Apprentice' and 'Santa's Trainee Elf'. They both have some nice puzzles ranging from easy to medium, or maybe hard, depending on your experience.

For a longer game with a Scott Adams' feel, I really like 'Igor's Quest'. This was restricted to two-word input, two-word responses (which made it really hard to write) and no graphics, but it has some great puzzles oriented around word play.

If you don't mind playing a text-only game, a couple of longer games that you might like are 'Acid Rain' (for something with a bit of an old-school feel and mostly easy puzzles) and 'Captain Cutter's Treasure' (for something with a rich story and some devious puzzles).

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I really wanted to play this game but I'm totally stumped on the very first puzzle (how to get past the troll). Are there in-game hints? If so how can I trigger them?

As a side note I didn't appreciate the you throw like a girl bit as it perpetuates harmful stereotypes

Did you talk to the troll? I seem to recall him saying that he was hungry. Try giving him something to eat. If he rejects it, make use of something that was in your inventory at the start.

I started on an update, but was diverted onto other projects. The new version will have an in-game hint system and you no longer throw like a girl.

Examine the camp fire, then dig or search what you find there.

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Perfect!!! And, thank you for getting me into text adventures!

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For the love of all that is holy can someone please tell me how to get past the room with the camp fire.  Thank youuuuuuuuuuuuuuu (love the game by the way, just more stuck than sticky the stick insect on a sticky bun)