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Zork was one of the first adventure games, after ADVENT.

The first version of Zork was written 1977-1979 on a PDP-10 computer by Tim Anderson[?], Marc Blank[?], Bruce Daniels[?], and Dave Lebling[?] in a programming language called MDL[?]. All the programmers came from the Dynamic Modelling Group[?] at the MIT Artificial Intelligence Lab[?].

Originally "Zork" was a name that any unfinished program around MIT got. When the game was finished the implementors called it Dungeon, but people went on calling it Zork, so the name stuck.

The company Personal Software[?] produced a version of Zork I (about the first third of the original Zork) for the Apple II and TRS-80 personal computers in 1980. They managed to fit this much capability into the small personal computer systems of the time, and gain portability between them, by using a specialized system called the Z-machine. They had plans to release Zork II as well, but never got that far.

Finally Infocom, a company started by the above and others to produce adventure games brought out versions of Zork for most popular computers.

The Zork series of games introduced grues and zorkmids.

Zork and its relatives fit into a category known as interactive fiction.

The original Zork trilogy:

  • Zork I: The Great Underground Empire (1980)
  • Zork II: The Wizard of Frobozz (1981)
  • Zork III: The Dungeon Master (1982)

The Enchanter Trilogy also took place in the Zork universe and is considered to be part of the Zork series:

Later Infocom additions to the series:

  • Beyond Zork (1987)
  • Zork Zero: The Revenge of Megaboz (1988, with graphics)

Even later Activision additions to the series:

  • Return to Zork (1993, with graphics)
  • Zork: Nemesis (with graphics)
  • Zork: Grand Inquisitor (with graphics)
  • Zork: The Undiscovered Underground

External links

  • Zork I, II, III and the Undiscovered Underground can be downloaded from http://www.csd.uwo.ca/Infocom/. (Other games in the Zork series are apparently not legally available for free.) They can be played on almost any platform using an appropriate Z-machine interpreter.
  • A slightly-modified hack of Zork can be played interactively in a web browser at http://thcnet.net/zork/

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