Description1893: A World's Fair Mystery
is a historical mystery text-based adventure game using very detailed factual information regarding the famous 1893 World's Fair. Chicago historian Peter Nepstad
was the one-person creator and researcher of the game. You play a detective who is looking into a diamond theft but eventually come upon kidnapping and murder as well which seem to be linked to a grander plot. There are 500 historical photographs used throughout the game, and numerous locations throughout the fair which will take many hours to discover and explore. If you get stuck, there are a visitor's guide to the fair, a map of the grounds and in-game hints if you can find them.
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Prior to the retail release, there was a text-version (1.4) uploaded to the IF Archive and announced on rec.arts.int-fiction on 14th July 2002. An updated version (1.5) was available ten days later and on 17th October, a 2.0 preview release with graphics and music was shipped. Version 2.1 (28th October) fixed some bugs and starting from 2.4 (30th November), two PDF manuals were included with the game. Pictures on the history of the game can be viewed here
As of May 2010, the author announced
that sales of the game (after slightly over seven years) have exceeded 4,000 -- small fry for video games generally, but still an enormous figure for sales of text adventure games, a genre considered to be commercially defunct since the disappointing returns following the last big push by Infocom Implementor Michael Berlyn's Cascade Mountain Publishing
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