Marooned (1980 or 1981)   1 comment

Finding this game was like opening a secret door.

I first spotted it on The Big List of TRS-80 Software where it’s listed as “Adventure # 10- Marooned (124480)”.

Opening it up makes it look like an ordinary Scott Adams game, in fact, the last one I played, with the option to select an adventure all the way up to Ghost Town (#9).

If you take the leap and type in “10”, it still has a normal Scott Adams instruction screen …

… but then leads to something entirely different.

Kim Watt was prolific programmer and legend among the TRS-80 community for his utility software. This was clearly written between Scott Adams Adventure #9 (1980) and #10 (1981) although because this was an “unofficial” game, I don’t know if I can get more exact than that. Mr. Watt did start making significant money from his utility software starting at the end of 1980, so I’m going to guess this was a lark between mid-1980 and the end of 1980.

Unfortunately, the game also seems to be incomplete. I have below a complete transcript as far as I’ve gotten. It doesn’t look unreasonable, but that’s only because I have included just the commands that worked.

I’m in the passenger section of an airplane

Obvious exits: North, South.

I can also see: Empty seats


I’m in a cockpit

Obvious exits: South

I can also see: Control panel

I see
guages everywhere.
[Typo is in the game.]

Plane is rapidly descending.
Steering mechanism is broken.



I’m in the tail section of an airplane

Obvious exits: North.

I can also see: Broken rudder cable – Tool box – Knapsack

[Note: This is a parachute. You cannot TAKE KNAPSACK.]


There’s something there!
[Finds Wire cutters – Screwdriver – Wrench]

[This is the only item out of the toolbox you can get]

I found something!
[Hidden knob appears.]

A secret door opens.

I can’t do that yet.

There’s an island you can get to according to the source code, but I haven’t been able to make it any farther past this point, and it’s so broken there’s a strong chance it’s impossible.

Alas, that means this is more of a historical curiosity than a game. Pyramid of Doom came out of a fan deconstructing the Scott Adams file format; it’s interesting to see someone even attempt roughly the same thing with the notion of making the next numbered game in the series.

Posted June 19, 2018 by Jason Dyer in Interactive Fiction

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One response to “Marooned (1980 or 1981)

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  1. Interesting! I hadn’t seen this before. I wonder if it was the inspiration for Plane Crash?:

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