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Zork 3 - The Dungeon Master (1984)      

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Infocom
Adventure / Graphical
Infocom, Marc Blank, Dave Lebling
8088/8086 CPU, DOS 1.0, 80-column text mode display adapter
DOS 2.0
64K
1
No
Eng

5.25" floppy disk
UK
Zork 1 - The Great Underground Empire
Zork 2 - The Wizard of Frobozz


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Tenshi No Shi (Unknown)   18th Jun 2012 10:08

"The Endless Stair isn't all that endless now is it?"

Once upon a time, a game called Zork was created on a large, mainframe computer. In a time when the sort of graphics one would find on an Atari 2600 was the most you could expect from a game, Zork offered us something different, something new. Zork was to be the template for hundreds of similar games, and even years later, it would be the father of games such as Myst and Riven. The concept of Zork was simple: become an adventurer, collect treasure, solve puzzles, battle nasty monsters; all the things that have become the hallmark of the games we play today. There was, however, a catch: you had to do it all in the confines of a simple, text-based program. Read the story, tell the story what you want to do, and then read some more. Simple yet addicting.

The third and final game in the original Zork series. Zork III: The Dungeon Master picks up were Zork II: The Wizard of Frobozz left off. By now, you're a seasoned adventurer, ready to face any danger. With trusty sword at side, you continue your quest of plundering the treasures of the Great Underground Empire. Only when you've solved every puzzle, slayed every beast, and collected every treasure will you be a Dungeon Master.

If you're looking for graphics, you won't find any here. In fact, this time around, the font looks a little jagged, like it wasn't anti-aliased. Just kidding. Same font, same style.

Fed up with the Indiana Jones soundtrack yet (the one you would be playing on your home system since Zork III offers you the choice of mono silence or stereo silence)? Try mixing it up with a Star Wars soundtrack. Sure, it might not seem appropriate, but you have to liven thing up a little. Otherwise, the only sound you'll hear is the clacking of the keyboard.

If you haven't figured it out by now, you use a keyboard to play these games. You know, type words together to form commands. No, stop it. Stop! Put down that mouse. You can't...I said put it down! That's better. You can't use the mouse either.

I've said it before (twice actually, if you've read my reviews for Zork I and Zork II) and I'll say it again: Zork is an incredibly well designed series of games, especially given the limitation that they are text-only games. It may seem dull at first, but once you get into one of the Infocom classics, you can't help but enjoy yourself.

No bonuses for Zork III: The Dungeon Master either. You play the game, you beat the game, the end. Unless, as I mention before, you bought this as part of an Anthology. Then you have all sorts of neat stuff to look at and more games to play.

I personally love the Zork games. You can usually find the Zork games bundled together in an anthology or as part of an Infocom collection. I highly recommend Zork to anyone who loves to play games for the mental exercise and great story, nto for the flashy graphics. Give it a try, the Underground Empire awaits...

Reviewer's Score: 8/10, Originally Posted: 11/01/99, Updated 07/05/02

PowerSorceror (Unknown)   18th Jun 2012 10:07

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This title was first added on 11th November 2010
This title was most recently updated on 13th February 2016


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