The 1970s Video Game Inspired By Real-Life Deep Cave Crawls

The 1970s text-based video game Colossal Cave Adventure challenged players to navigate a long tunnel with wealth at its end. An influential coding feat, Adventure—as it’s primarily known—was the first-ever work of interactive fiction, an innovation that led the way for mediums like modern video games, roleplaying games, AR and VR. Adventure isn’t purely a product of imagination, though. Its creator Will Crowther based it upon memories of caving with his then wife, Patricia Crowther. Some 700 lines of FORTRAN code turned their experiences of Mammoth Cave, which the couple had previously plotted, into a navigable digital world. Will coded the map while mourning their divorce, in-between long stints playing Dungeons & Dragons. As OneZero writer Claire L Evans says, “Will Crowther, who never made another game, is now considered interactive fiction’s J.D. Salinger.” Read the rest of the story at OneZero.