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Zork: The Great Underground Empire (TRS-80)

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MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.2
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.

Advertising Blurbs

Inside of Box - DOS (Solid Gold release):

    The faint-of-heart need not apply!

    As for the dauntless, prepare to encounter the unknown. The long-abandoned Great Underground Empire — a fantastic realm of magic and mystery — is yours for the exploring.
    Abandoned, yes — but the Empire is not totally uninhabited. Still lurking in its crags and crevices are numerous creatures with whom you must match wits, skill and bravery — a thief, a troll and other troglodytes of equally ill repute. Your survival depends on how successfully you vie with these denizens and solve the subterranean world's manifold puzzles. But before you can truly emerge victorious from the cavernous quarters of Zork, you must collect its many priceless treasures and safely bear them to daylight.
    Courage, cunning and logic. You will need them all to triumph. The Great Underground Empire awaits. We dare you to enter it!

    Contributed by JudgeDeadd (12257) on Jul 10, 2009.

Back of Box - DOS (US):
    You're on the threshold of a whole new experience. For ahead of you is the extraordinary trilogy of the Great Underground Empire. And once you step through the door to ZORK, you leave the world of arcade games and trite fantasies behind, and enter the dimension of your imagination.
    You don't just play the ZORK trilogy—you become part of it. Every plot, every puzzle, every personality has been honed and perfected to make your experience uniquely realistic and involving. Perhaps that's why all three ZORK adventures are among the most popular computer games in history.
    Even the way we put the trilogy together is unique. ZORK I, II, and III all share a common thread, yet each is a complete and separate story unto itself—so you can play them in any sequence you choose.

    ZORK I: The Great Underground Empire confronts you with perils and predicaments ranging from the mystical to the macabre, as you strive to discover the Twenty Treasures of ZORK and escape with them and your life.

    ZORK II: The Wizard of Frobozz takes you to new depths of the subterranean realm. There you'll meet the Wizard, who will attempt to confound your quest with his capricious powers.

    ZORK III: The Dungeon Master is the test of your wisdom and courage. Your odyssey culminates in an encounter with the Dungeon Master himself, and your destiny hangs in the balance.

    Contributed by JudgeDeadd (12257) on Jul 10, 2009.

Back of Box - Amiga/DOS (Mastertronic release) (UK):
    Here's the story that started it all! Written by Marc Blank and Dave Lebling, Zork is widely recognized as the classic work of interactive fiction. Nearly one million copies have been sold, making it the most popular entertainment software product ever!
    Zork I beckons you into a world fraught with danger and discovery. Using all the cunning you can muster, you'll plunge far below the surface of the earth in search of the incomparable Treasures of Zork. But this is no mere treasure hunt. During your amazing journey, you'll come face to face with creatures so outlandish they defy description. And you'll wander through an underground domain so vast, with so many twists and turns, it can offer you new surprises no matter how many times you explore it.

    Contributed by JudgeDeadd (12257) on Jul 10, 2009.

From The Master Storytellers Infocom catalog, 1987:
    "If it's 2 in the morning, this must be ZORK. Not even Ted Koppel can keep the nation up so late."
    -The Washington Post


    Here's the story that started it all! Written by Marc Blank and Dave Lebling, ZORK I is every bit as fun and entertaining as when it first appeared.

    This interactive classic takes you to the ruins of an ancient empire far underground, where you travel in search of the incomparable Treasures of Zork. The exotic creatures, extraordinary sights, and diabolical puzzles in the Great Underground Empire are known from Melbourne to Memphis, making ZORK the world's best-selling entertainment software product.

    Contributed by Belboz (6517) on Oct 13, 2001.

From PASSPORT To The United Products of Infocom 1986:
    THE ZORK TRILOGY
    Adventure seekers, welcome to the Great Underground Empire, a world fraught with danger and discovery, an underground domain so vast, with so many twists and turns, it can offer you new surprises no matter how many times you explore it. The ZORK TRILOGY has been a top 10 best seller for over 5 years, and it's still going strong.

    ZORK I: THE GREAT UNDERGROUND EMPIRE
    The ideal starting point for first-time interactive fiction players, ZORK I takes you to the ruins of an ancient empire far underground. You will travel into this fabulous land in search of the incomparable Treasures of Zork. This classic attracts explorers who love the idea of a treasure hunt among exotic creatures, extraordinary sights, and diabolical puzzles.

    "With their brain-testing challenge and beautifully written descriptions... it's no wonder that ZORK's I, II and III have become classics in their time."
    -Electronic Games magazine

    "The program by which all other computerized adventures are judged."
    -Playboy

    "If it's 2 in the morning, this must be ZORK. Not even Ted Koppel can keep the nation up so late."
    -The Washington Post

    Contributed by Belboz (6517) on Oct 09, 2001.

From the 1983 Infocom catalog "OUR CIRCUITS, OURSELVES!":
    The ZORK trilogy, Infocom's classic underground odyssey, takes you into the extraordinary environs of the Great Underground Empire. It's a world so vast and unique, it can offer new discoveries no matter how often you explore it, with challenges that change and revitalize the adventure each time you make your descent. The NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW sums up the ZORK trilogy as "remarkable adventure fantasies." And the public agrees, for the SOFTALK READERS' POLL named ZORK I its "Most Popular Adventure," and all three ZORK adventures are among the best-selling computer games in history.

    Even the way Infocom puts the trilogy together is unique. ZORK I, II, and III all share a common thread, yet each is a complete and separate story unto itself - so you can play them in any sequence you choose.

    ZORK I: The Great Underground Empire confronts you with perils and predicaments ranging from the mystical to the macabre, as you strive to discover the Twenty Treasures of ZORK and escape with them and your life.

    Contributed by Belboz (6517) on Oct 09, 2001.

From the first Infocom fold-out catalog, 198?:

    You
    are about to see
    the fantastic worlds of Infocom
    unfold before your very eyes.



    ZORK I This phenomenally popular story plunges you into the extraordinary environs of the Great Underground Empire in search of incomparable treasures. You'll come face to face with outlandish creatures as you make an amazing odyssey with so many twists it can offer new surprises every time you explore it.

    Contributed by Belboz (6517) on Oct 05, 2001.

Back of box cover:
    >Throw the sack at the troll.

    The troll, who is remarkably coordinated, catches the brown sack and, not having the most discriminating taste, gleefully eats it. The flat of the troll's axe hits you on the head...


    WELCOME TO ZORK I: THE GREAT UNDERGROUND EMPIRE.

    It beckons you into a world fraught with danger and discovery. Using all the cunning you can muster, you'll plunge far below the surface of the earth in search of the incomparable Treasures of Zork. But this is no mere treasure hunt. During your amazing journey, you'll come face to face with creatures so outlandish, they defy description. And you'll wander through an underground domain so vast, with so many twists and turns, it can offer you new surprises no matter how many times you explore it.

    Contributed by Belboz (6517) on Mar 30, 2001.

"The Incomplete Works of Infocom, Inc." Catalog:
    ZORK I: The Great Underground Empire confronts you with perils and predicaments ranging from the mystical to the macabre, as you strive to discover teh Trasures of ZOrk and escape with them - and your life. STANDARD LEVEL

    Contributed by Adam Baratz (1351) on Mar 29, 2001.