"ZORK III: THE DUNGEON MASTER draws you into the deepest and most mysterious reaches of the Great Underground Empire. Nothing is as it seems. And the one responsible for the shadow and darkness - the Dungeon Master - embodies the greatest mystery of all. in this test of wisdom and courage, you will face countless dangers. But what awaits you at the culmination of your odyssey is well worth risking all."
Zork III, is the last episode set in the original Zork trilogy.
BUG 1 VERSION 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 10/820818 Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y 15/830331 N N N N Y Y Y Y Y Y 15/840518 N N N N Y Y Y Y Y Y 16/823242 N N N N Y Y Y Y Y Y *17/840727 N N N N Y Y Y Y Y Y
In version 10, the chest was too big and could thus contain items that normally weren't supposed to fit. The most notable was the wooden staff, which, if put safely inside, would not get broken when the player fought and killed the man at the cliff ledge. Thus a player could get the treasure and keep the staff intact as well. Another interesting use of this bug involved using the chest to transport the lamp or torch across the lake, thus eliminating the need for the grue repellent and viewing table. This allowed the player to win with only 6 of the 7 possible points. It's incredibly difficult to find a version with this bug still intact.
SUBJECTIVE COMMENTARY: IMHO, the solution created a bug rather than fixed one. Since the old man took the staff out of the chest, what is the sense in saying that it doesn't fit if the player tries to put it back? And if the staff fits, the lamp should also. I would have fixed the bug in the following two ways: 1) Make the chest leak, thus preventing the lamp or torch from surviving the trip across the lake, and 2) Allow the player to get both the staff and the treasure in this way, but have the Dungeon Master reject him at the end of the game. Interestingly, the _broken_ staff fits in the chest in all versions. If you enter the Dark Room with the lamp, the grues won't attack or even be mentioned, but the room is still called the Dark Room, and there is no room description. Typing LOOK generates no response at all, and send you to the next turn. -- GC In Version 10, it's possible to get the Dungeon Master to follow you beyond the Dungeon area, if you get beyond the door, drop one of the items you need, then knock on the door again, from the INSIDE! It's even possible to get the DM stuck in the area from Zork I. [NZT] If you use the previous bug (in Version 10 only) to go to the Zork I area with the Dungeon Master, you may occasionally (but not always) be able to produce the following exchange:
>dungeon master, go east "I prefer to stay where I am, thank you." You suddenly find yourself back in the viewing room! The dungeon master leaves the room.
Very strange. The Dungeon Master leaves the room after refusing to do so. Also, not only are you not really back in the viewing room, you and the DM will be stuck in the Zork I area permanently. -- Graeme Cree At the very end of Version 10, the sword was often a source of trouble. If the player happened to be holding the sword when he/she was in cell #4, the game would crash when the player asked the Dungeon Master to push the button. This was because there were two different possible exits to the north, and the sword routine got confused when it checked the adjacent rooms to see whether or not the sword should glow. Infocom's testers didn't find this originally, because they'd been leaving the sword to block the beam of light. [NZT] After you've climbed down the rope to the cliff ledge, you can't climb back up again with the chest. However, typing "CLIMB THE ROPE" (as opposed to "CLIMB UP THE ROPE") will make you climb DOWN the rope again, putting you at the cliff base, even though the rope ends a few feet above the cliff ledge! This one's present in all versions. When you get to the Dungeon area, try this (in any version):
DUNGEON MASTER, KILL ME WITH THE STAFF "If you wish," he replies. If you insist... Poof, you're dead!
- The dungeon master has died ****
The dungeon master follows you. Your sword has begun to glow very brightly.
>DUNGEON MASTER, KILL DUNGEON MASTER WITH STAFF "If you wish," he replies. "If you wish," he replies. You aren't even holding the staff!
The last message appears even though you ARE holding the staff! Very surreal. I'm still scratching my head over these. This bug is not only in all versions of Zork III, it also exists in most Dungeon/Zork ports. While you're shoving blocks around to solve the Royal Puzzle, drop the book in the slot to open the door, then move a block in front of the door and leave the usual way (via the ladder). Walk around to the side door and you'll find it's not blocked! If you re-enter the puzzle via the side door, the sandstone block will be gone. If you move away from the door (without exiting the puzzle) the sandstone block will reappear in the area as soon as you leave. I reported this bug to Infocom many years ago, but I doubt it was ever fixed. -- Dave Newkirk Interacting with the pedestal in the Jewel Room is always difficult. In all versions after Version 10, if you try to TAKE PEDESTAL, you get the response "YOU CAN'T REACH IT THROUGH THE CAGE", even if the cage is not present (i.e. you travelled back to a time before it was installed.) In Version 10, it says "YOU CAN'T SEE ANY PEDESTAL HERE.", even though it is mentioned in the room description. Thus, in all versions, if you take one of the crown jewels other than the ring, and realize your mistake, there is no way to put it back. -- Graeme Cree When you reach the Zork I area, go east and south. It will say:
"You have come to a dead end in the mine. There is a small pile of coal here."
However, the coal is not really there and cannot be interacted with. In fact the game doesn't even know the word "coal". This bug is present in all versions, but is very hard to find because of the difficulty in staying in the Zork I area long enough. -- Graeme Cree Reader response I may have a new bug for your Zork bug list. I call it The Boat Of Holding Bug. I have recently started replaying Zork I (last time was ages ago, and I forgot almost everything since then). I therefore cannot be sure if this is a bug or a feature, but it has the earmarks of a bug. The bug is a artifact of there being two distinct objects for the boat: one inflated, one deflated. It is possible to inflate the boat, take everything that is not sharp, pile it in the boat, and deflate the boat. You may now pick the boat up and carry it around (along with the pump and whatever sharp objects you want to carry). This was discovered in Zork I 88/840726. On a different note, I noticed on your bug list, you mention: When you get to the Dungeon area, try this (in any version): >DUNGEON MASTER, KILL ME WITH THE STAFF "If you wish," he replies. If you insist... Poof, you're dead!
- The dungeon master has died ****
The dungeon master follows you. Your sword has begun to glow very brightly. Or this: >DUNGEON MASTER, KILL DUNGEON MASTER WITH STAFF "If you wish," he replies. "If you wish," he replies. You aren't even holding the staff! The last message appears even though you are holding the staff! Very surreal. I'm still scratching my head over these. It would appear to me that these messages are caused by the engine performing output while interpreting the orders with the dungeon master as the subject. Put differently, some of the messages are the game talking to the Dungeon Master. For instance, in the last case: YOU> DUNGEON MASTER, KILL DUNGEON MASTER WITH STAFF invokes DM> KILL DUNGEON MASTER WITH STAFF Parser interprets: Subject: DM Verb: KILL DO: DM IO: Staff Game engine checks for staff in inventory of DM (since he is the subject). Not there. Engine dumps out with error: You aren't even holding the staff! which is displayed. From the point of view of a Lisp hacker, this is a fairly straightforward bug. However, the dungeon master dying but not dying in the first message is what twigs me. Perhaps I will know more when I experiment with that bit of the game. One final item. In Zork I, if you type DIVE while at Aragain Falls, you plummet to your death. This is accompanied by a couple of messages, such as:
Aragain Falls >DIVE This was not a very safe place to try jumping. In the movies, your life would be passing before your
**** You have died ****
(You are then resurrected in whatever manner is appropriate for your situation.) The second line varies, although I have not yet figured out what it is based on. At one point, I elicited garbage. I will have to get back to you to tell you just how to do this. This is also in Zork I 88/840726. Piquan email@example.com In issue #17, a reader named Piquan asked a few questions about the following Zork III bug: > DUNGEON MASTER, KILL ME WITH THE STAFF "If you wish," he replies. If you insist... Poof, you're dead!
- The dungeon
master has died **** The dungeon master follows you. Your sword has begun to glow very brightly. The game sees that the command is directed at the DM, so it prints out "If you wish," he replies. I think that at this point, in accordance with Piquan's theory, the game temporarily treats the DM as the player and acts as if he typed "KILL ME WITH THE STAFF". At this point, I can think of two possibilities: either the phrase "KILL ME" is reserved as a special case -- where the interpreter skips the standard battle rules (It would be silly to say, "The you parries") and just calls the subject's "suicide" routine -- or, alternatively, any "ME" in this context would be interpreted as referring to the DM. I don't have any experimental evidence, but I'm leaning towards the first possibility; after all, if the second one were true, a command like DUNGEON MASTER, FOLLOW ME would cause the poor guy to start following himself around. Anyway, assuming the interpreter has reduced the instruction to "MAKE THE DM COMMIT SUICIDE", it would rightfully print out "If you insist... Poof, you're dead!", which is the standard output when you commit suicide. Then a different level of the game code notices that the guy just died, and prints out that message. Quick tangent: I bet that when the programmers were writing the make-the-DM-follow-the-player routine, they probably made it work something like this: If the DM is in follow-the-player mode, and he's not in the room, then: print "The dungeon master follows you" change the DM's location to match the player's That way, whenever the player moves to a new room, the routine is called. So anyway, now the DM is dead, which probably is internally accomplished by setting his location to some null room. He's still in follow-the-player mode. So the "if" statement is true. So the text is printed out, and the DM's location is set to the room the player is in, so suddenly he's alive again. I have no idea, however, why the sword is glowing brightly. It's only supposed to do that if it's in the same room as an evil object. Then again, maybe the game is smarter than we think -- I'd be pretty scared of an undead corpse, Dungeon Master or otherwise. :) Mike Schiraldi firstname.lastname@example.org Zork Zero
BUG VERSION 1 296/881019 Y 366/890323 Y 383/890602 Y *393/890714 Y
After you put John Paul Flathead's spyglass in the cauldron of Megaboz, you can go back to the Frigid River Valley and ask Otto for it again, which allows you to get infinite points. When you use this technique to throw more than 24 Flathead items into the cauldron, you'll start getting garbage to describe what the cauldron is doing. Unfortunately, the spell of Megaboz, which breaks the Curse, won't work once you get more than 1000 points.
- zork3-10.z3: Infocom game data (Z-machine 3, Release 10 / Serial 820818)
- zork3-12.z3: Infocom game data (Z-machine 3, Release 12 / Serial 821025)
- zork3-15.z3: Infocom game data (Z-machine 3, Release 15 / Serial 830331)
- zork3-15a.z3: Infocom game data (Z-machine 3, Release 15 / Serial 840518)
- zork3-16b.z3: Infocom game data (Z-machine 3, Release 16 / Serial 830410)
- zork3-17.z3: Infocom game data (Z-machine 3, Release 17 / Serial 840727)