Telengard

telengard screenMy first computer was a VIC-20, but my first computer of any real power was the Commodore 64. At some point I got the popular game, Telengard. I played it for hours, mapping as much of the 50x50x50 dungeon as I could.  This is much easier to do with a partner so that one can map while the other fends off all the subterranean beasties encountered when one must ‘STAY’ for any length of time.

I also learned to manipulate the BASIC code, creating an Esperanto version, plus a version that played all by itself.  The self playing characters only do well after they get to at least level 6.

All this went by the wayside when the C-64 was replaced with my Mac SE (sigh).

But then we got our PowerMac and eventually nostalgia made me look around.  I found that Telengard was still available, but that you needed an Emulator to run it on our PC. I downloaded the emulator, but never felt like paying for the key, so I just played the game ten minutes at a time.  then the internet outgrew our poor powerMac. We graduated to a windows machine and the Mac eventually stopped working, taking with it Telengard and the emulator.

So recently I decided to go find Telengard once again.This time I found a ‘remake’ version which does not require an emulator. I can tell you that it works, but I miss the time it took for the surroundings to plot after each move.  I always wanted to alter the program so that one would hear foot steps as it was drawn on the screen. This new version looks like the original C-64 version, but there are a few differences. There is now a line at the bottom of the screen telling on what level you are. When you cast ‘Continual light’ you see unknown objects, even if they are behind solid walls.  One of the ‘mostly’ good changes is that there is no buffer, so that if you press a few keys before a prompt pops up, the key presses are ignored.  This is only bad when you go to cast a spell in combat, one that you know well, but the computer doesn’t keep up.

A few of the sounds are missing, like for the lightning bold spell and the zaps one receives at the box with 4 colored buttons. The game also somewhat resembles what D and D’ers used to call a ‘Monty Haul’.  Because often multiple treasures just pop up.  This was more typical after defeating a dungeon beastie. Because of the lack of plot time for the dungeon, the pace is also quickened. You really have to pay attention because it also seems like the ‘encounters’ are more frequent than in the C-64 version.

All in all it’s a great game, but I think I still might look for a version with an emulator so that I can play with the program, translate it, etc.

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One Response to “Telengard”

  1. koplushian Says:

    Someone is missing out by not creating an app that let’s one play telengard on portable devices!

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