Colossal Cave Adventure: Building and running 40-year-old code from the dawn of gaming
You are standing at the end of a road before a small brick building.
Around you is a forest. A small stream flows out of the building
and down a gully.
Sound familiar? If you’re an old-school gamer, you’ve probably seen these words hundreds of times. They’re the starting point for Colossal Cave Adventure, the first major computer game. It was created in 1977 by Willie Crowther and Don Woods and quickly became a phenomenon in those pre-GUI, pre-Internet years. What helped the game spread from one data center to another was the fact that the source code was freely available.
The last version of the code from the original authors was written in 1995, and if you’re like us, you're hearing this story and wondering where that code is now. With the encouragement and permission of the authors, open source pioneer Eric S. Raymond has ported the code to his GitLab account. In this article, we’ll show you how to build and run that code.source