This page is dedicated to Telengard, an ancient computer game which I wrote in 1982. This game was then sold by Avalon Hill, and was available for the Commodore Pet, the Apple ][+, the TRS-80, the Atari 400/800, the Commodore C64 and eventually the IBM-PCjr and the IBM-PC. It is a dungeon crawl, creating an adventurer whom wanders through the depths of the Telengard Dungeon and was itself an evolution of an older program I wrote, DND, which ran on the PDP-11 under RSTS/E and on the DECSystem-20 under TOPS-20.
DND was written on the DECSystem-10 at BOCES Spencerport (New York) where I worked in the summer of 1976 and 1977. It was written in BASIC under the TOPS-10 operating system.
I went to collage at Purdue University and quickly ported DND to the RSTS/E system there in 1977 through 1979. It was very popular with my fellow students there and was, sad to say, the cause of more than one student dropping out of school. Also it made me very unpopular with the computing staff at Purdue. I had one very interesting side trip when I was asked to come out to Maynard, MA to the Mill at Digital Equipment Corporation to port DND to their DECSystem-20. The engineers there were very big fans of the game.
In 1978, Commodore marketed the first PET 2001. I ponied up the $1200 to get this and I was freed from dependence on the university's machines. I rewrote DND in BASIC, calling it TELENGARD and fitting its early versions into 8K of memory. Luckily memory expansion occurred quickly, and the final version of this ran barely inside a luxurious 32K of memory.
Gaining the notice of the people at the Avalon Hill Gaming company, TELENGARD was among their first round of computer game releases. Alas, Avalon Hill is no longer with us. Ports to the Apple ][+ and the TRS-80 happened very quickly, after all Microsoft 8K BASIC was very similar in all these machines, just some details about the display and sound had to be recoded. The Atari 400/800 was more challenging, its internal handling of string variables was completely different.
TELENGARD predates many of the very early computer adventure games, including Temple of Apshai and the Wizardry series. In many ways I think it served as inspiration to some of the games that came after it.
When I rewrote this for the IBM-PC, instead of BASIC, I used C. Unfortunately the source code for the C version was lost over the years, however I have the binaries, and am willing to let you give this very old game a try. Click on the link below to download this game and try it on your PC. To install this, unzip it into a folder on your PC, bring up a full screen command window, and type TELEN to start the game. Enjoy!
Click on this button to download TELENGARD for the IBM-PC
Other Cool TELENGARD links
Travis Baldree's very excellent remake of the C64 version of TELENGARD is available from his site at http://buildingworlds.com/telengard/ (this page appears infected)
A very interesting tribute site with a lot of downloads is at http://www.angelfire.com/ny5/telengard/
The Telengard Tavern Generator is at http://www.digital-eel.com/ttg.htm
A hilarious revue of TELENGARD is at The Gaming Depot at http://www.gamingdepot.com/g/Telengard
A review with screenshots of the Apple ][ version of TELENGARD is at http://www.thelogbook.com/phosphor/apple/telen.htm