Legerdemain: A Tale Fraught with Peril and Wonder

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Legerdemain: Zork Meets Nethack!LegerdemainMy friend Alex Aguila recently notified me about a wonderful indie project that combines interactive fiction with roguelikes--it's Zork meets Nethack! You can read all about it at roguelikefiction.com, where there are many screenshots and the chance to buy a the game with a lovely cluebook for $20--300 pages! This looks really, really good. Check it out and let me know what you think!

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Bill Loguidice
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This done look darn good and

This done look darn good and tempting. Too bad there's no box!

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Rowdy Rob
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Joined: 09/04/2006
It's about time!

I read quite a bit about the "Rogue/Nethack" genre of RPG's, both here and elsewhere ("Dungeons & Desktops"), and it seems like such a GREAT engine for a good, plotted CRPG.

While it looks primitive on the surface, I've read some AMAZINGLY deep things that the Nethack engine is capable of doing/computing, far beyond what any mainstream CRPG is doing. I can't think of any examples off-hand, but the actual core of the game sounds incredibly robust and detailed, allowing the player to pull off things not even imaginable in other CRPGs.

Unfortunately, Nethack (and Rogue?) still seems to me like more of a hack & slash, treasure-hunting endurance test than a mythic CRPG. Considering the computing power of today's PCs, it's surprising that we haven't seen more attempts at bolting on a story and some background mythos onto the deep core of Rogue/Nethack. Legerdemain seems like a great evolution!

Bill Loguidice
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I haven't tried it myself

I haven't tried it myself yet, Rob, but I've always heard good things about "Dwarf Fortress", which seems to incorporate at least some of the things that you suggest: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dwarf_Fortress and http://www.armchairarcade.com/neo/node/1719

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Matt Barton
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Dwarf Fortress

Ah, Dwarf Fortress gets another mention. It's one of those crazy things for me where everyone says I should play it immediately because I'll love it. Naturally I haven't tried it yet. :)

I should really get around to it soon, though, because I'm sure it'd make a great Matt Chat episode.

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Bill Loguidice
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ha ha, I only brought up

ha ha, I only brought up Dwarf Fortress again because of Rob's musings about the potential for an "epic" with these types of engines. It would seem both Legerdemain and Dwarf Fortress probably fit at least some of that bill, though particularly in the case of the latter, there's some question of how approachable the game is to newbies.

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