Would you like fries with that?

Ok, so my roommate Rich brought home a ton of frozen hamburgers today. Apparently, since we live in an apartment, we can’t just fire up a grill — the smoke detectors see to that. So i had my first experience with cooking a burger in a frying pan. I now know that you’re not supposed to spray the pan with oil for this, because it splatters everywhere and burns you. It would be nice if there was some kind of warning about that on the packaging, but there isn’t.

So after I’m done cooking my burger, and my arm, I lift this thing out of the pan. It is literally DRIPPING with grease. Note to self: don’t oil the pan first next time, non-stick means non-stick! Mmm, less healthy than a fast food burger, with twice the wait! So i wrap the burger in a paper towel to absob some of the oh-so-unhealthy grease and start assembling my burger. I’ve been living off bologna, ramen, and cereal for the past few months, so I totally forgot about the whole shaking the mustard before you squeeze it concept… first squeeze, i get a BLAST of liquid all over my burger, followed by a few spurts of mustard. Yuck. At least I didn’t make the same mistake with the ketchup.

All things considered, it was a pretty good burger. We don’t have any lettuce, or tomato, or onion, because jay doesn’t believe in vegetables, but we did have american cheese to top it off with. Tasted pretty good. #1 item on christmas wish list: george foreman grill.

Perhaps I’ll stick to the microwavable, racecar-shaped chicken “fun” nuggets we picked up in the store today.


Welcome to the Town of ZZT

Greetings! Here is the first of hopefully many project-related updates!

My current active project is recreating the classic ZZT Game Creation System. ZZT is an ASCII-based system where you move your little smiley face around to interact with objects. The shareware version came with one full game, called The Town of ZZT, which I am currently using for testing. There are many many excellent games from many genres available at z2, as well as a download of the original MS-DOS version.

Important Note: The following screenshots and demos are of a pre-release version of DreamZZT and are subject to change at any time. Please link to this page directly and not to the screenshots, as there is no guarentee they will always be available at their current location, and they may represent bug and features that may not be available in a public version. These screenshots are a collection from several different platforms, including MS-DOS, Windows 2000, linux, and the Sega Dreamcast. The list of supported platforms is subject to change at any time. For information on the latest official release of DreamZZT, please visit the DreamZZT homepage.

Now that we’ve got the disclaimer out of the way, lets start our tour of DreamZZT 3.0 running Epic Megagames’ Town of ZZT. These screenshots have been scaled down so I don’t take up everyone’s friends pages. If you want to see the full image, just click on it!

Our first top on the tour is the the scroll in the center of town, welcoming you to the game.

Users of the original ZZT will note several things missing from the status bar, and that the scroll-like text window has been replaced by a simple box.

Now, lets talk a walk into the store.

This is the Armory in the Town of ZZT, where you can exchange gems for ammo and torches, and uncover a few secrets too! There are several objects missing from the board, noteably the spinners in the Guardian puzzle, and the door to the stock room, making that puzzle extremely easy until those objects are supported 🙂

Now we’re going to demonstrate one of the major improvements to DreamZZT 3 over the previous releases:

Hyperlinks are now fully functional inside text dialogs, allowing you to interact with the store owner. After selecting “Torch” from the list of items, we see the store owner’s one-line responce at the bottom of the screen:

Darn. Too bad there’s no cheat to give us gems, eh?

Spoiler alert! The following two screenshots give away the secret to one of the first puzzles you must solve in the Town of ZZT. For those of you who would prefer to solve the puzzle on their own, please stop reading now. There is no further information in this post besides a summary of the Bank of ZZT puzzle.Spoiler alert!

I am very pleased to announce the first fully-solvable puzzle in DreamZZT’s history: The Bank of ZZT. As an added bonus, DreamZZT doesn’t support “dark” rooms yet, so you don’t need to light a torch, and you can see exactly how the bank vault works.

Here we see the Bank of ZZT in all its glory — naked, and undark. This puzzle is a very interesting combination of pushers, sliders, boulders, and ZZT-OOP scripting. By pushing A, B, C, D, and E into the correct combination, you line up the boulders at the top, allowing the pushers to open up the bank vault. Pushers, Slider, and Boulders are a new addition to DreamZZT 3.0, they were previously unsupported.

After entering the correct combination and pusing the “push” boulder, we see that the pushers have moved the sliders out of the way, allowing you to enter the bank vault and steal the key and gems. Congratulations! You’ve obtained the first of the 7 purple keys!

That’s all for now. Stay tuned for more DreamZZT news, coming to a LiveJournal friends page near you!


It’s been a very long time since I’ve updated these pages, and I’ve found a solution for that. I’ll continue to post important updates, release announcements, etc. on here, but now I’ve got a LiveJournal account, and I’ll use that to post progress on projects, as well as personal posts, etc. LiveJournal allows a lot more freedom than these project pages do, and hopefully it’ll be better at keeping you all up to date. So here it is, my LiveJournal URL: http://www.livejournal.com/users/c99koder. Feel free to add me to your friends lists, post replies, etc. I’ve started the journal off with a short history of my programming carrer, as well as an update on the progress of DreamZZT. Enjoy!