Wade Clarke's memoir of growing up writing games for the Apple II

SWORD OF EVIL (c. 1988)

Sword Of Evil was my third "Usborne engine" text adventure, and while I remember nothing specific about the creation of it, I know that I regarded it as an improvement over the first two.

Sword of Evil Apple II screenshot

I still hadn't added save/restore features at this point, but I had moved away from the Scott Adams game presentation by removing the exit list and visible object summaries, and making them a part of the prose.


This is the first of my Usborne adventures for which I still have all the design notes. I was rigorous with each text adventure I made and did everything that the Usborne book told me to do. That meant planning out the whole adventure in written form before typing a single line of code, and not just planning the designs, but making numbered lists of verbs and objects that would go into the game. Unlike with the interactive fiction languages we have today, there wasn't much scope for flexibility if you realised late in the piece that you forgot something important. The computers also had limited RAM.

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wade_clarke_5_adventures.zip (Contains wade_clarke_5_adventures.dsk)