Every once and a while, I receive emails from people looking for a certain game, electronic toy, or computer from their distant past. I then pass it on to intrepid VC&G readers to crack the case.
Our latest Fuzzy Memory seems similar to our last one in some respects (a top-down D&D like game with RPG elements), but hails from an earlier time. Can you help Aaron figure out what it is?
Your site has such a great record of identifying games from fuzzy memories, so I thought I'd see if it could work for me.
Back around probably the late 80s, I spent a night at the house of some of my mom's friends. I didn't really know them, but they had a son who had a computer with a D&D-like game. I loved computers and D&D, so this was really exciting to me. Unfortunately I don't remember much about the game…. I recall it would let you create your own character, and I tried putting in all 18′s (max) for the stats (like Strength, Intelligence, etc.), and it gave me a message like, "Thy character is too powerful" and it made me put in different stats to be more reasonable…. The rest of what I remember is even fuzzier, and could be just about any D&D-like game…. It seems like there was a store where you could buy arrows and stuff. The play screen was like a top-down dungeon, and it seemed to be turn-based rather than real-time, but I'm not certain of that.
My memory of this D&D game is so fuzzy that if I try to describe it too much, I may be going down the wrong path, because I could be remembering parts from a different game…. But it seems like there was only one player character rather than a party — or at least I only created one character and sent him to the dungeon….. The graphics may have been tile-based. I seem to remember seeing lines that represented dungeon walls, and there were doors which may have required keys to enter…. And maybe I saw a treasure chest in one of the rooms. And an orc. I think there was an orc, heh.
I'm not even sure what type of computer it was. From that time period, it could have been C64, Apple, Tandy…. who knows. Knowing what type of computer could help narrow down the search…. And I do remember another game he had. It was some kind of movie creating game, where you would choose a background, then pick different little "actors" (almost like colored stick figures) or bits of scenery and move them around with the joystick. The game would record the things' positions in real time as you moved them around the screen, and then you would play back what you had recorded so far, and add another object in, one thing at a time, and record its movements too. You could also change the size of the actors or objects, making them smaller or larger. I distinctly remember picking a castle background and putting a bunch of tiny people dancing around in front of it, then I put in a giant-sized person and had him throw a boulder at the tiny people, to make it look like they were having a fight.
I remember the games were in nice, bight color. The movie-maker game definitely was anyway.
So… that's two games and one computer to identify, heh. I think identifying the movie-making game might be easier, and that might lead to knowing what type of computer it was, which might help narrow down what the D&D-like game was!
The Search Begins
It's up to you to find the object of Aaron's fuzzy memory. Post any thoughts or suggestions in the comments section below. Aaron will be monitoring the comments, so if you need to clarify something with him, ask away. Good luck!
Have a memory of a computer, video game, computer software, or electronic toy you need help identifying? Send me an email describing your memories in detail. Hopefully, the collective genius of the VC&G readership can help solve your mystery.