DescriptionYou are a dim ignorant Apprentice Enchanter, but your task is enormous. You must save the world from the warlock Krill who is ruling the land with his evil powers. You are not the first in this quest but hopefully you will be the first to succeed, as the more experienced members of the Circle of Enchanters are powerless. You know the basics of magic and will have the chance to learn many spells. Keep your wits and use everything you can to your benefit!
Enchanter is a text adventure set in the Zork universe, following the original Zork trilogy. As in the previous games, the player interacts with the environment by typing in text commands, usually combinations of verbs and objects. A new feature in the game is the player character's ability to cast spells. These spells must be memorized before the protagonist is able to cast them, and are learned during the course of the game. The text parser understands the names of the spells as verbs, and the player only needs to type in the spell name and the name of an object he/she wishes to cast that particular spell on.
- "Zork IV" -- Working title
- "Enchanter: INTERLOGIC Fantasy" -- Tag-lined title
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DifficultyInfocom rated Enchanter as "Standard" in difficulty.
GruesEnchanter may be the only game in the Zork universe not to feature grues; the creatures that kill you in dark rooms are not referred to by name, and the game doesn't even know the word "grue".
NovelA novelisation (perhaps better termed a cross-promotional tie-in loosely related to the original property) of the game was produced by Byron Preiss (with a grey-striped cover design emulating Infocom game packaging), published by Avon Books. It was written by Robin W. Bailey (who gives Marc Blank and Dave Lebling special thanks under the dedication) and first published in May of 1989. Its ISBN is 0-380-75386-3 and the rear cover blurb reads as follows:
"It's a very original, really funny fantasy novel--well worth reading. I loved it. Robin W. Bailey should become an outstanding name in the field." - Marion Zimmer Bradley
Anesi was the grandson of the wizard Stribel Wartworth, but he'd never really studied magic. His father had pulled him out of the university after less than one semester. Anesi wasn't even allowed to use the little magic he knew.
Then the entire Thriff Guild of Enchanters came to his family's little house in the woods. The whole world was threatened by the evil of the Great Terror, and they were helpless before it. To fight the Great Terror would require a magical prodigy, one who was untouched by the petty temptations of a wizard's life.
It would require Anesi.
With his friends at his side--Fidget, Cubby the brogmoid, and Tyrillee the dryad--he began his march to the south to face the greatest danger his world had ever known
Infocom, Inc., is the foremost publisher of interactive fiction software. Since its first release, the best-selling ZORK(r), the company has had an unparalleled string of successes, including Dave Lebling's and Marc Blank's fantasy world of ENCHANTER(r).
ParserThe game has a parser that understands over 700 words, making it the most advanced interactive fiction game of its time.
ReferencesThere are references scattered throughout Enchanter's documentation and gameplay comparing the use of spells by mages to the use of command line interfaces by programmers, and comparing mages to hackers in general. Many of the spell names, such as FROTZ and GNUSTO, are taken from MIT hacker slang of the time; others are various pop cultural references or anagrams. For instance, the NITFOL spell allows one to speak with animals, and NITFOL is a truncated reversal of "LOFTING", after the author of the Dr. Doolittle stories.
References to the gameFrotz, a modern open-source interpreter for Infocom games (as well as independently written interactive fiction) draws its name from a spell ("cause object to glow with illumination") in Enchanter and its sequels. Another spell, Blorb ("hide an object in a strongbox"), provides the name for a standard wrapper for interactive fiction multimedia resources. Several other IF tools have also been named after spells from the series.
Statistics(From The New Zork Times Vol.3 No.2 Spring 1984)
Some statistics about Enchanter:
- Apparent number of rooms (those seen by the player): infinite
- Number of rooms: 74
- Number of different ways to die: 17
- Number of words in vocabulary: 718
- Number of takeable objects: 31
Zork IVThe game was intended, at one point, to be a sequel of sorts to the Zork trilogy. In Zork III: The Dungeon Master, a device slowly cycles through "scenes" from each of the Zork games as a number is displayed above it. A depiction of the sacrificial altar from the then-unreleased Enchanter appeared under the number "IV".
Information also contributed by Belboz, Nélio and Pseudo_Intellectual
Related Web Sites
- Enchanter's Wikipedia page -- Here you can find all sorts of info about the game.
- Enchanter Transcript Game -- Working Z Machine Game
- Infocom homepage -- At this site you can find information on ALL of Infocom's interactive games, Infocom related articles, sample transcripts, InvisiClue hints, walkthroughs, maps and information on buying Infocom games today.
- The Commodore Zone -- All about Enchanter - introduction, images, related links and comments area.
- The Infocom Gallery -- High-quality scans of the grey box package and manual of Enchanter.