This 1987 roguelike game is still great




Doesn’t “roguelike” mean top-down 2D?


That’s what I thought… also, usually greater game depth… but I got the Staff of Ra so who cares.


I can’t think of a definition that fits all roguelikes. Not all of them have permadeath, not all have procedurally generated worlds.

“Generic gaming buzzword” seems to work the best.


This would be more the early Wizardry games or, going even farther back, Maze War.


I remember hiding this inside a machine in the journalism lab, I renamed it SCAB of Ra and stuffed it inside a random folder. It was a hypercard game, right?
The big thing about it was that it was non-violent, I remember the most aggressive action the player could take was using a tranq dart on animals if they had found the gun.


Just from the screen shot it looks a little like Intellivision’s “Advanced Dungeons & Dragons”, except with better graphics. I loved the Intellivision game, especially when I discovered I could keep going down into an infinite number of levels.


It’s “roguelike” in the sense that the world is randomly created each time you play. But then by that criterion, Minecraft is a roguelike


It also seems to have the closed-world labyrinthine layout common to most of them, unlike minecraft.


Reminds me a lot of Moraff’s World and its variants.

Man, for all their level grinding, character killing simplicity, me of the 1980s/90s loved those Moraff games.


I played so much of this on my grandfather’s computer. I’ve been trying to remember what it was for years now. I jumped out of my seat in excitement when i saw this article lol


The current trendy term is “procedural death labyrinth”, but honestly sometimes I think people enjoy the game of putting games in pigeonholes more than the actual games themselves.

In terms of gameplay tho, it’s clearly very roguelike–procedural world, light RPG-like combat, an inventory, a text scroll of things happening (“You found 45 pieces of gold”), permadeath.

Remarkably, the first game with this presentation was the 1974 (!) game, Maze War, which not only had the same first-person perspective but had network multiplayer! However, I’m going to say that ultimately this is not a roguelike but a 3D Monster Maze-like.


… or “Dungeons of Dagorath” that I used to play on the old Tandy CoCo.


Then I think we’d hear more games being labelled “house post-roguestep”


Speaking of ancient Macintosh roguelikes, anyone here remember Taskmaker? I’d never seen anything quite like it at the time – though lacking both permadeath and randomly generated dungeons, the term “roguelike” is probably even less applicable.


I’ve played a bunch of house post-roguestep games; you probably haven’t heard of them.


Looks like the definition was widely expanded some time ago:


When you put it like that… people aren’t putting things in boxes enough. Finding new boxes to put things in. I would play the hell out of a House Post-Roguestep game.

I never really understood why people are so passionate about what is and isn’t in a particular category. The “that’s not a game” attitude, or why it’s so important what “roguelike” means. Perhaps that comes from not having a stake in it–I really like those games that straddle the boundaries, or push out into new territory. I suppose a lot of “gamers” are really invested in the games they already like and just want more of the same. Don’t like these newfangled games muscling in on their territory.

That title is indie as fuck.




A classic. Darius Kazemi is a fucking treasure.