Zork goes native on the Kindle
Avoiding the Grue on the plane
A web interface might be the easy way to get text adventures onto the Kindle, but those on the plane can now go native too.
Last week we celebrated the availability of Zork (I, II & III) on Amazon‘s Kindle, but lamented the fact that it was a web interface when a local application would be so much more elegant - well, we lament no longer, as such an application is now available.
It's not official; officially the Kindle can only play a couple of (free) word games and Scrabble (with the latter limited to Americans). But that hasn't stopped Andrew D Quincy, who has released an Infocom interpreter capable of playing all the important computer games for those prepared to jailbreak their Kindles.
Quincy has applied to be part of the Kindle Developer Beta program, and we can‘t understand why Amazon hasn‘t welcomed him with open arms considering what a perfect fit text adventuring is for the Kindle. Perhaps Amazon worries the e-book reader will get identified as a geeks‘ toy (in the same way that Nintendo discouraged children‘s titles on the Wii for the first few years); but regardless, geeks who want to play Zork on the plane can follow the step-by-step instruction and be up and running in moments.
Still no Hitch Hikers‘ Guide To The Galaxy, though it's surely only a matter of time before we‘ll be able to struggle for an analgesic without relying on data connectivity. ®
Infocom? Forget the moderrn stuff. Just go straight for Colossal Cave. There's a C version, in case no-one's ported a FORTRAN IV compiler to the Kindle yet...
Nethack is definitely doable, but there isn't a Java port so it would have to be a compiled binary exposed through a Java GUI.
I'm not sure if Kindlets are allowed to call random binary programs or use JNI; I suspect not. This is obviously not a problem for rooted devices as you can just change what they're allowed to do.
However, KIF as it is would be runnable on a non-rooted device, except for the signatures.
>Scrabble (with the latter limited to Americans)
Whats the point in Americans playing Scrabble? - they change words around so much from proper English that it might as well count as cheating.
Though I guess if the US version was more like 'Scrabble for chavs' (tm) it might make sense - no words more that two syllables, and the spelling is secondary to pronunciation.
Ok, ok, mines the flame-proof one!
Obvious game for the kindle ... text display based, keyboard input, doesn't need a particularily fast display update.
You can get Hitch Hikers‘ Guide To The Galaxy
...and others... and they work!