by IBM
(IBM plastic case)

All of the old-school fantasy games have cryptic four-letter names that start with "Z": Zyll, Zork... Well, two of 'em anyway.

Jim Leonard of MobyGames called this one "a MUD before MUDs existed." It's an all-text RPG (even going so far as to include three classes of character to choose from), it's real-time, it allows two people to play at once (cooperatively or competitively), and it's highly randomized for replay value: Objects and monsters are placed differently in every game, much like the sample adventures in Delton T. Horn's excellent book Golden Flutes and Great Escapes.

The screen is divided into ASCII-border windows, and play is driven by single keystrokes rather than a parser (a necessity for the two-player simultaneous option), but there are lots of long text descriptions. And besides, it says right there on the package, "A Text Adventure Game", so who are we to argue?

Zyll comes packaged in IBM's clear plastic case with an inlay, like the first King's Quest and some PCjr carts I've seen. Definitely snag this one if you can find it.


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