The Catacombs of Your Mind (Original Article)

This graphics-based adventure game has all the features of an adventure plus graphics that produce a visual image of the games maze. Requires 32K without a disk drive (48K if you use a disk) and a joystick.

You are about to enter a world that exists only within your mind and on the video screen before you. It takes the form of a large, complex maze and contains many monsters. The methods you need to destroy these monsters are also found within the catacombs.

The opaque green door leading to the outside is composed of an almost indestructible material. It can be destroyed only by magical means.

All items needed to complete your journey must be found within the boundaries of the maze. No items will be brought into the maze and none will leave.

You must perform a very specific set of steps before you can pass through the door which leads out of this world and back to reality.

The Adventure

This is a graphics-based adventure game for Atari computers with at least 32K bytes of memory (48K if you are using a disk). In calling this a graphics-based adventure game, I’m saying that it has all the features of a text adventure, plus graphics. The graphics consist of the view from your position within a mazelike labyrinth where you can see four locations ahead of you. A location is any position at which you may reside and where hallways may lead off in other directions (other than the direction you are currently facing).

You move about this labyrinth by using a joystick plugged into port 1. Pushing the joystick forward will move you one location in the direction you are facing. Moving the joystick to the left or right turns you in the corresponding direction, while you remain in your current location. Pulling the joystick toward you causes you to turn around and face the opposite direction. If you should fall into one of the many pits located throughout the catacombs, you will fall into another of the 360 locations in the catacombs, and you may even change direction.

Text Input

If, at any time, you wish to do something other than move around with the joystick, type in a command on the keyboard of the computer and press RETURN. This command must consist of two words: a verb and a noun, in that order. The objects required to complete your journey are placed at certain locations in the catacombs. The objects are inside yellow boxes. By moving to the same location as a box, you can open it and examine its contents. If you type OPEN BOX, the computer will respond with a description of the object contained in that box. You can then get the object by typing GET followed by the name of the object. After playing the game several times, you may get to know where certain objects are, in which case you can move to the location of the object and get it without having to open the box.

Many other verbs and nouns exist, but part of the fun of playing any adventure is discovering what you can and cannot do in any given situation.

Two other commands which you should know are INVENTORY (or INV) and QUIT. INV gives you an inventory of all the items that you possess, including the items you are wearing. You have a limit of ten items which can be held at once. QUIT allows you to end your current game. After typing QUIT, you’re asked to verify your command, type in your answer, and press RETURN. If you type YES, the program will exit to BASIC. If you type NO, you will be returned to your present location within the labyrinth.

Monster Encounters

Monsters are located throughout the catacombs. Their only purpose is to try to destroy you. When you meet one of these monsters, there is usually only one or two things you can do to destroy it. You may not leave that location until either you or the monster is destroyed. Any attempt to leave is interpreted as an offensive action and will only speed your death.

Another problem is that you have only three turns in which to destroy the monster–or it’ll get you.

Typing Note

Lines 10000-10419 contain the DATA for the rooms. Each DATA line has just four numbers. Don’t change the line numbers or try to consolidate the DATA into fewer lines. The RESTORE statement is used to READ the proper DATA for the current room position.

(Code listing was here)

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