One summer ('85 or '86 I think), I had used my Commodore 64 to create a BASIC program that would allow me to quickly generate NPC parties, or any character really. I had been doing a lot of the solo dungeon generation from the DMG, as I was in a realm of no chums to game with at the time. I had allowed it to generate full classes, races and levels as a whole at random, or I could enter specifics if desired. It even generated common and magical items, and henchmen if needed.
At least that was the way it was supposed to work. I had rewritten the code 8 times (as I learned how to program more effectively), and was in the final process of linking the subroutines for generating magic items to the classes when the motherboard fried. One summer mostly lost.
I was determined at that point to get a 'real' computer next time, so I never pursued replacing the C64.
Post by krusader74 on Jun 12, 2017 17:12:42 GMT -6
Hunt the Wumpus is a hide-and-seek format computer game. It was a text-adventure with a simple command-line interface. It was written in BASIC by Gregory Yob around 1972. There is prior art on which it was based. But these older games used a cartesian grid as a map, whereas Hunt the Wumpus used the graph of a dodecahedron as its map, giving it an exotic topology:
Post by krusader74 on Jun 12, 2017 17:13:06 GMT -6
The PLATO computer system was developed at the University of Illinois starting around 1960. It was way ahead of its time. While other computers still used punch cards, PLATO had plasma screens and touch screens in 1964, sound cards in 1972, emoticons in 1973, and forums and chat in 1973. It was designed as a classroom instruction aid. It used a high-level language called TUTOR in which "authors" wrote "lessons" (their jargon for programmers writing code). While these "lessons" were literally supposed to be lessons intended for classroom use, "authors" soon began producing video games.
The very first computerized dungeon crawl ever was pedit5, a PLATO "lesson" by Rusty Rutherford. Released in winter 1975, pedit5 was a roguelike game. Unfortunately, sysadmins kept on deleting it, since it wasn't truly a lesson, and so there are no existing copies today. There is a short article about the creation of pedit5 by Rusty Rutherford.
The next computerized dungeon crawl was dnd, another PLATO "lesson" by Gary Whisenhunt and Ray Wood. The story is: this guy they knew went to a game convention in 1974 and came back with a copy of D&D. They started playing the tabletop game. Then in late 1974 they started coding it as a PLATO "lesson." Like pedit5, dnd was a roguelike game and supported "group play." Like later arcade games, it tracked high scores. Like modern FRPGs, it featured a "boss fight" at the end of a level. Gary and Ray were at Southern Illinois University, which only had one PLATO terminal. One of them was a sysadmin, so unlike pedit5, dnd never got deleted from the network. Over the years they continued to make improvements and add levels. The dungeon eventually had about 20 levels. After Gary and Ray left SIU, development of the game was taken over by the brothers Dirk and Flint Pellett. By late 1976, dnd had 100,000 logons. By the time the PLATO system was decommisioned in the late 80s, it had millions of logons.