On a Nostalgic Find

In high school I discovered Rogue-like games.

Rogue is an old computer game, a text-based dungeon crawl. You create a character, journey down into the underground where you fight all sorts of monsters, find treasure, and… well, I’m not really sure what the point was. Doesn’t matter.

In high school the two I enjoyed playing the most were Hack and Larn. I wasn’t especially good at Hack–I think the deepest into the dungeon I ever managed to reach was level fifteen or so. I had a tendency to starve to death.

The one I was particularly good at was Larn. I beat Larn once, and I considered that an accomplishment.

Years later I discovered that Hack had become NetHack. I discovered the Tolkien-inspired branch of the Roguelikes–Moria and Angband. But I couldn’t find Larn. Oh, I could find reference to it. But I could never find a live, working link.

Yesterday that changed. I found Larn.

Getting it to run under Windows XP took a little finesse. Unfortunately, the specialized version of ANSI.SYS Larn requires does not work under XP in any way, shape, or form. The text output, therefore, is a little… off.

Nostalgia’s been fulfilled, though. I have Larn. And someday–perhaps someday soon–I’ve venture down into the volcano in search of pillage and plunder! 🙂

Published by Allyn

A writer, editor, journalist, sometimes coder, occasional historian, and all-around scholar, Allyn Gibson is the writer for Diamond Comic Distributors' monthly PREVIEWS catalog, used by comic book shops and throughout the comics industry, and the editor for its monthly order forms. In his over ten years in the industry, Allyn has interviewed comics creators and pop culture celebrities, covered conventions, analyzed industry revenue trends, and written copy for comics, toys, and other pop culture merchandise. Allyn is also known for his short fiction (including the Star Trek story "Make-Believe,"the Doctor Who short story "The Spindle of Necessity," and the ReDeus story "The Ginger Kid"). Allyn has been blogging regularly with WordPress since 2004.

3 thoughts on “On a Nostalgic Find

  1. Doesn’t the Windows version work?

    Alternately, you could find an MS-DOS emulator to run it under.

  2. Hello there,

    I managed to get the larn version of nansi.sys working under xp – if you’re interested. I found larn 20+ years ago and I’m still an addict :grin:. Let me know if you’re interested…

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