Black Lives Matter - Action and Equality. ... Adafruit joins the Stop Hate for Profit campaign.
0

Running Zork and Z Machine Games on an Adafruit ItsyBitsy M4 Express @cogliano #RetroGaming #ItsyBitsy #VintageComputing

Running Zork on an Adafruit ItsyBitsy M4 Express

Dan Cogliano aka Dan the Man has done some remarkable work porting the classic PDP-10 game Zork and other Infocom Z Machine games to the Adafruit ItsyBitsy M4 Express.

Zork was originally developed in the late 1970’s on a DEC PDP-10 computer at MIT using a descendant of the LISP language. There was also a FORTRAN version that was translated to the C language. When the development moved to a commercial endeavor through the startup company Infocom, Zork was rewritten in two parts: An interpreter and a story file read by the interpreter.

This allowed Zork to run on many different computers, where there were quite a few in the 80’s. The same story file could be used on any computer, only the story interpreter had to be created for that computer. This also allowed new stories and sequels to be created that could run using the same interpreter. The name for the interpreter was called the Z Machine. There are several open source Z Machine implementations available. My goal was to implement a Z Machine on an [microcontroller] that allows playing Zork and other compatible interactive fiction games.

From PDP-10 to Adafruit ItsyBitsy M4

The original Zork story file is about 90KB in size, which leaves plenty of room in the M4’s 192 KB of RAM for the Z Machine. The 2MB SPI FLASH provides enough storage for plenty of Z Machine games and save files.

The A2Z Machine supports Z Machine files version 3 and version 5 (usually “.z3” and “.z5” extensions). You can find other compatible games and resources on the internet including these sites:

The Interactive Fiction Database
Z-Machine Matter

From mainframe to a board smaller than your thumb. Lots of fun and great work Dan! See Dan’s whole article here along with the related tweet.

See our previous article on Zork on the PDP-10 and translations.

Do you like Retro Gaming? Remember Infocom games? Post in the comments below!


We are angry, frustrated, and in pain because of the violence and murder of Black people by the police because of racism. We are in the fight AGAINST RACISM. George Floyd was murdered, his life stolen. The Adafruit teams have specific actions we’ve done, are doing, and will do together as a company and culture. We are asking the Adafruit community to get involved and share what you are doing. The Adafruit teams will not settle for a hash tag, a Tweet, or an icon change. We will work on real change, and that requires real action and real work together. That is what we will do each day, each month, each year – we will hold ourselves accountable and publish our collective efforts, partnerships, activism, donations, openly and publicly. Our blog and social media platforms will be utilized in actionable ways. Join us and the anti-racist efforts working to end police brutality, reform the criminal justice system, and dismantle the many other forms of systemic racism at work in this country, read more @ adafruit.com/blacklivesmatter

Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.

Join 20,000+ makers on Adafruit’s Discord channels and be part of the community! http://adafru.it/discord

Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.

Join us every Wednesday night at 8pm ET for Ask an Engineer!

Follow Adafruit on Instagram for top secret new products, behinds the scenes and more https://www.instagram.com/adafruit/

CircuitPython – The easiest way to program microcontrollers – CircuitPython.org


Maker Business — To make it through a tough business cycle, layoffs should be a last resort

Wearables — Marker, meet flower

Electronics — Footprint Fail!

Python for Microcontrollers — Python on Microcontrollers: CircuitPython on Wio Terminal, 6.0.0 Alpha 1 and more! #Python #Adafruit #CircuitPython @circuitpython @micropython @ThePSF

Adafruit IoT Monthly — Repurposed Smart Home Displays, Open-Source 5G Networks, and more!

Microsoft MakeCode — Black Girls Code Virtual Camps

EYE on NPI — Maxim’s Himalaya uSLIC Step-Down Power Module #EyeOnNPI @maximintegrated @digikey

New Products – Adafruit Industries – Makers, hackers, artists, designers and engineers! — New Products 7/1/20 featuring Adafruit H3LIS331 Ultra High Range Triple-Axis Accelerometer – STEMMA QT / Qwiic!

Get the only spam-free daily newsletter about wearables, running a "maker business", electronic tips and more! Subscribe at AdafruitDaily.com !



No Comments

No comments yet.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.