The history of "The House at the Edge of Time"

(& why it's so simple-minded)

I wrote this game in 1989, using Turbo Basic. While I do have a Ph.D., I'm a humanities scholar who's never had a course in computer programming; I learned BASIC from books & trial & error (lots of error). An early reviewer complained about the "primitive parser" -- which still took me quite a while to figure out!

Once computers became more sophisticated, I figured that text adventures -- especially this one -- would pretty much be forgotten and wouldn't run on the new machines. But, surprisingly, House still runs in the DOS window on Windows XP. And occasionally somebody plays it.

So I found the folder with the printout and the maps printed on a dot-matrix printer; and I set up this web site, dedicated to the .347 people who try out this game every year. I also discovered that good old Turbo Basic still runs, so I made a version of the game in which players don't get killed quite so often. (Why I never get rid of anything....)

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