DOS - 1984
Description of Zyll
Developed by IBM and published by IBM, Zyll is a adventure, role-playing (rpg) game revolving around interactive fiction, real-time. It was published in 1984, feel free to download and play it now!
Although subtitled "A Text Adventure Game", Zyll is actually a revolutionary text-only RPG that introduces many concepts that have not since been seen together in one game. The basic plot: you have been transported to a distant land to recover the black orb and at least 4 treasures from Zyll, the evil sorcerer who destroyed your homeland. So what makes the game so revolutionary and unique? C.E. Forman said it all in his synopsis of the game: 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. With three different types of characters to choose from (Warrior, Thief, and Wizard), high replayability, and some excellent fantasy writing, Zyll is a classic fantasy RPG that is well worth a slot in our hallowed Hall of Belated Fame.
Review By HOTUD
Captures and Snapshots
Screenshots from MobyGames.com
Comments and reviews
ibm games added this comment :
I played this in the eighties. pretty fun.
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Yar added this comment :
It was designed for the old IBM Model F keyboard, where the F-keys were in two columns on the left of the keyboard instead of across the top. I played this game two-player a lot with a friend, and we always fought over who got to be player two. Even when I played alone, I'd play 2-player just so I could use the numpad (making the control much easier), and also so I could use player one as a mule or punching bag. I don't know if keymapping utilities existed back then, but they do now. I use the DOSBox keymapper and use 1, 2, q, w, a, s, z, x, l-alt, and space as binds for F-keys 1-10. However, even after almost 30 years, when I started playing this again, within minutes my brain started trying to tell me to hit rapid f-key combos for the various spells and other actions I needed. Nostalgia++!!
Yar added this comment :
IIRC Player 1 uses the F-keys and Player 2 the numpad.
Ken added this comment :
Started Zyll up with DOSBOX and got to the start screen shown in the pic above, but can't figure out how to select from the options...keys don't seem to control anything.
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