Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Legend of the Red Dragon: Won-ish! (with Summary and Rating)

Why do I have the letter "A" on my shield twice?
Legend of the Red Dragon
United States
Robinson Technologies (developer and publisher)
Released 1989 for Amiga, 1992 for DOS
Date Started: 30 March 2024
Date Ended: 15 April 2024 
Total Hours: 11
Difficulty: Easy (2.0/5) in one sense but still frustrating
Final Rating: (to come later)
Ranking at time of posting: (to come later)
Well, my first experience playing an online game with other players led to a few interesting revelations.
First, I learned how addictive online games can be. I didn't really enjoy Legend of the Red Dragon; its mechanics are too simple and its humor too juvenile. But something about the enforced time limit and the limited number of actions per day kept me addicted. I found myself staying up past midnight on nights that I should have gone to bed much earlier, just to log in and get my day's work done before someone could come along and kill me.
Second, I learned the thrill of slaying real players' characters. I don't necessarily mean "thrill" in a positive way, but rather the way that it occurs in thriller as a movie genre--kind of a sweaty anxiety. I got butterflies in my stomach every time I attacked a real player, something that's never occurred with a computer-generated foe except for maybe some of the bosses in soulsborne games. I could never shake the idea that I was doing something wrong, but my curiosity and lust for power overcame it. I wonder if that's how serial killers feel their first time out.
Third, I learned the depression and humiliation from having my own character slain. Repeatedly. Like, every day. It turns out that when you visit the inn, there's a relatively trivial way to bribe the bartender into giving you the key to any player's room, where you can break in and murder them in their sleep--well, maybe. Usually, they wake up, and from there it turns into a proper duel.
I break into a fellow player's room to kill her, but I can't even hit her.
For a while, every time I logged in, it turned out that someone had killed my character in the night. You revive at midnight, but with 10% less experience. It was infuriating. I took note of who did it, then noted if they were asleep at the inn, then broke in to get my revenge. Do you know what's more enraging and humiliating than having your character killed by another player? Breaking into his room to kill him in revenge, only to have him wake up and kill you again during the attempt. For years, I've heard of players tracking each other down in real life or "swatting" each other, and I've wondered with bafflement how anyone could take things that far. Then I encountered other players in the mildest of online games, and . . . well . . .       
The amusing thing is how easily I found it to justify my own attacks as completely utilitarian while railing against my character's murders as unjustified and personal. I imagine this contradiction afflicts many MMORPG players.
In any event, I began to reason that if I was just going to get killed every night anyway, I might as well go out on my own terms. You get so much experience for killing another character that it's worth the risk. My days started to look like this:
  • Log in.
  • Fight my day's allotment of forest battles. (Occasionally, I got killed during one of these, and that was it.)
  • Return to town and buy any weapon or armor upgrades I could afford.
  • Visit the training school and see if I could level up.
  • Visit the inn and turn in any gems I had for attribute-raising potions.
Buying statistics upgrades from the bartender.
  • Flirt with Violet. This ceased being an option a few days after I joined the server, as Violet married another character named Taz and was replaced by an obese, bucktoothed barmaid named Grizelda. Being "portly," she is of course unworthy of any affection.
I thought Violet and I had something special.
  • Listen to Seth Abel the bard and go out and fight any more forest battles I earned from his song.
  • Go to the bank and deposit all my cash except for the amount needed to bribe the bartender and get a room at the inn. 
  • Look for other characters to kill, both in the game or asleep in the inn. Pick the lowest-level character who was at least my level. (I'm not sure if it's possible to attack characters with a big level variance. I was never killed by anyone more than a level or two above me.) If I survived that battle, repeat with the next one.
  • If I was still alive, rent a room for the night and go to sleep.
I think with some creativity, the author could have found ways to make PVP battles more interesting and less deterministic. For instance, give the player renting the room the option to remain alert and armored, at the cost of 20% of his forest battles for the next day. Or require the attacking player to creep into the room unarmored, so if he fails to surprise the sleeping character, he's at a huge disadvantage. 
I'm not sure I've shown the main town screen anywhere, so here it is.
As it is, almost all player-vs.-player battles--not to mention all regular battles--come down to who strikes the first blow, which in turn usually comes down to which player gets the first attack. The only real exception is the use of your limited special attacks or spells, which you really want to save for PVP battles instead of wasting them on forest creatures--although this means that I died a few times at the hands of forest creatures because I was trying to save those attacks.
At some point, I began to wonder if I would ever make Level 12 and get a chance to slay the red dragon, which I figured was necessary for the "won" tag. To ensure that this could happen, even somewhat pathetically, I downloaded a DOS version of the game that mimics a BBS on your own machine so you can just play against the computer with no other players. It's an empty experience--nothing that would sell as a commercial product, particularly since you have the same daily time and battle limits (though these can be adjusted). I started to slowly work my way towards Level 12 in the offline version at the same time I logged in every day with angst for the online version.
The offline version had many of the same encounters as the online one. Some notes on both:
  • The offline version features an occasional gnome who shows up during forest hunts and offers games of blackjack using standard casino rules. You can only bet a maximum of 5,000 gold, though, which doesn't do a lot for you after Level 3 or 4.
It's cute, but this is far less than I earn in a regular encounter.
  • In the offline version, you occasionally encounter really easy enemies even at high levels. I never experienced this online.
Hmmm...I wonder who's going to win.
  • Every level offers at least one forest enemy who's a lot harder than the others, forcing you to watch your battles carefully and use your special attacks (or run) judiciously. When I was Level 8, that enemy was King Vidion. At Level 9, it was an "earth shaker." At Level 10, it was "Sweet-Looking Little Girl." I thought all of them were bad, but Level 11 brought an absolute bastard called "ShadowStormWarrior" who killed me three days in a row.
The game loves to twist the knife.
  • There's an occasional old man who challenges you to a game of over/under. He thinks of a number between 1 and 100, and you have 6 guesses to which he responds "too high" or "too low" to whittle him down. I believe that with perfect strategy, you should be able to get the number a little more than half the time. I kept hitting the wrong key and screwing it up, though. Anyway, if you win, you get an extra spell point. I think this is the primary way that mystic-oriented characters develop their power.
  • The "mystical skills" character gets six spells in increments as he levels up: "Pinch Real Hard," "Disappear" (flee without any chance of failing), "Heat Wave," "Light Shield" (halves damage), "Shatter," and "Mind Heal." "Pinch" requires only one spell point, but "Light Shield" requires 12 and "Mind Heal" requires 20, which I only got just before my last dragon battle, but I decided to spend 12 points on "Light Shield" instead of saving the points to heal once in the middle of the battle.
  • At the Dark Cloak Tavern--the one in the forest--you can "research" other players to determine what weapons and armor they carry. This can help you decide if you really want to attack them. A single level variance in your equipped items makes a huge difference. 
I really should have paid more attention to those offensive and defensive values.
  • You never really do hear the full story of Olivia, the disembodied head. Every time you speak to her, she starts to accuse some other castle's lord of the problem, and then you walk away before she finishes the story. I see online that there is a process by which you can get (ick) sexual favors from the head. You would never know that this was programmed by a teenaged boy.
  • If you hit "S" on the main menu (which doesn't have a command that goes with that selection), you get a little poem called "Halloween" written by Seth Robinson in 1994. It describes a little kid named Billy who's so ugly that he only ever goes outside on Halloween because people assume he's wearing a mask.
Very small changes could have given this a proper meter.
  • Also found on a web site: If you type JENNIE during the forest menu, a prompt comes up asking you to type a single word describing actress Jennie Garth (apparently, Robinson had a crush on her). Various responses (e.g, FOXY, BABE, UGLY) get you different rewards and punishments. 
That's how the kids spell it these days.
  • You can pay the bartender to change your name. If you try to change it to one of the game's NPCs, you get various humorous messages.
You are not god!
  • I guess if you're a thief, you can catch a fairy during the fairy encounter, then use it to help you steal from the bank.
The furthest I got with my online character was character Level 9 and rank 10 or 11 with equipment. I might continue to play him, but probably not. Realizing it would take me forever to get to Level 12 and even longer to kill the dragon, I focused more attention on the offline version, which I edited to allow hundreds of forest battles per day instead of the default 15. I kept dying before meeting the maximum allotment, and turning back the clock was one thing I couldn't figure out how to do with the administrative panel. Nonetheless, I kept at it and eventually reached Level 12.
Reaching the top level
My trainer at Level 12 told me I was ready to hunt the dragon. I started looking around for how to do that. When he didn't appear during random forest encounters, I explored the other menu options and saw there was a way to ask about the dragon in the bar. The bartender suggested that I (S)earch while in the forest.
Well, that's heavy.
Doing so produces a special encounter at the entrance to the red dragon's lair.
Way to bias the choice.
I soon found out that while attacking the red dragon is possible for a Level 12 character, it isn't necessarily advisable. In our first battle, he had 15,000 hit points to my 1,784. He has several special attacks, and if you're unlucky enough that he uses his breath attack, over 1,000 of your hit points can disappear instantly.
My first encounter with the red dragon.
And the result.
This happened three days in a row, even with "Light Shield" in place. (There were times I could have run, but you can only challenge the dragon once per day, so fleeing isn't much better than dying.) Each time, I logged in the next day; fought another 100 or so forest battles; leveled up some of my equipment; boosted my strength, hit points, and defense (vitality) with gems; and tried again. Finally, on the fourth try, I got lucky with a couple of critical hits, and even luckier that he didn't use his breath attack.
Doesn't sound like I really saved the town, then.
Believe it or not, defeating the red dragon doesn't "win" you the game by default. You have to defeat it a number of times set by the system operator. I'm not sure what the number is for the online version I've been playing; all I can tell you is that the top current players in my realm have beaten the dragon three times. What makes this impressive is that each win sends you back to Level 1, albeit with permanent increases in some statistics.
The default number of dragon-slayings required by my offline version was 10. Since I wanted to see what the ending looked like, I had changed it to 1. Thus, when I defeated the dragon, there was quite a lot of epilogue text, some of it unique to my character class:
Right. "Registering."
If I try to go back into the game at this point, I get the screen at the top of this entry and dropped back to DOS. The only solution at that point is to reset the system, wiping the current roster. It's obviously not meant to happen very often.
I did some calculations, and I figure that if I hadn't set the game to allow a few hundred fights per day, and instead left it at the original 15, but had still changed the required number of red dragon defeats to 1, I would have been able to show that winning screen on 27 June. If I had left the winning conditions set to 10 dragon defeats, you would have seen it around 24 November 2025. That's with me signing in every day for about 15 minutes per session. The online version is more generous with the number of forest battles, and of course you get piles of experience for killing other players. I suspect if I kept going with it, I could defeat the dragon once by the first or second week of June.
Given all of that, you'll be impressed to know that one player on the server version, Keu, has won the game--not defeated the dragon, but won the game--43 times. Most of the top players have an active character in every single realm. It's as if instead of devoting myself to playing every RPG that ever existed, I devoted myself to playing just one game, repeatedly.
Thus, by any standards of a regular Red Dragon BBS, I didn't "win" the game, but I trust you'll forgive me for simply not having that much time.
The last screenshot I took of my character stats.
The game supported the addition of custom encounters and quests called In-Game Modules (IGMs). One archive site shows 705 of these modules for both Dragon and its sequel, including such intriguing titles as Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, Castle Coldrake, and The Star Trek Bar. I couldn't get the modules to run with my offline version, but I watched a video of a player exploring Felicity's Temple, written by a Lloyd Hannesson, where menus gave the player the ability to explore a temple and its environs. There's a minigame that allows you to kill the Red Dragon's children, plus some ribald options when encountering an arcade owner's daughter. Apparently, a major IGM called Wizardstone was going to finish Olivia's story, but it was never completed.
Since the IGMs could modify the character, I guess a number of them were written to explicitly cheat, bolstering the character with easy gold or experience for the main game.
One thing I did not experience--and this is not a complaint--was inducing my character to have sex with other players' characters. You initiate this by sending the appropriate propositions to other players. According to what I've read online, this can result in experience boosts for both characters but can also lead to STDs, marriage, and pregnancy.
Some players are into the game for scenes like this.
As we've seen, male characters can also romance Violet the barmaid, and female characters can romance Seth Able the bard, Robinson's in-game alter ego. A 2008 article on The Escapist reviewed the sexual content of the game and quotes Robinson as saying: "In retrospect, it's really pretty preposterous to have a kid who's never kissed a girl put himself in a game digitally scoring with thousands of women. Hmm - what would Freud say?"
I think Freud would probably say the same thing my friend Mark said to me 20 years ago on my first trip to Bourbon Street: "Those . . . uh . . . aren't women." I mean, no shame if that's your thing, and I realize that the "girls don't play games" trope is long dead and buried, but I still think the odds are against the heterosexual male player on this one.
More from the article:
[Robinson's] inspiration was often autobiographical. Robinson wrote in the possibility of contracting sexually transmitted diseases after he had an experience with Chlamydia. When one of his friends had a stillbirth, Robinson added the possibility of miscarriage to the game, too.

By the time Robinson stopped writing code for LoRD, players could flirt, seduce each other, get married and raise families. There were divorces, pregnancies and even children accidentally getting in the way of a monster and being killed. It was a level of sexual maturity that has rarely, if ever, been expressed in a game since.
It never occurred to me that some players might think that Chlamydia, miscarriages, and their own children getting killed is what was missing from modern RPGs. If that's what "sexual maturity" means, I guess I owe an apology to Olaf Patzenhauer. Let's have more games in which women shoot beams of light out of their breasts, please.
Since I didn't experience any of that, none of it will affect the GIMLET:
  • 1 point for the game world. We're told there's a red dragon terrorizing everyone and a few proper names appear here and there, but that's it.
  • 4 points for character creation and development. Both exist, but both are pretty basic. Where the game gets more points is that class and sex both make a major difference in the nature of encounters and the options you have available. I didn't even experience thief options
Leveling up by challenging my master.
  • 5 points for NPC interaction. I'm regarding the other players as "NPCs" for each PC to give such a high score. But I can't pretend that interaction with other players isn't a primary reason that most people enjoy the game.
  • 4 points for encounters and foes. Almost all of that goes to the textual encounters that you experience in between unmemorable battles with silly "monsters." You get a lot of choices during these random encounters, although I wish the game took them a bit more seriously.
  • 3 points for magic and combat. The complexities of combat tactics vary by character type, but you have a few options.
The big boss of the game is a red dragon, but on the way I just blithely defeat multiple gold dragons.
  • 2 points for equipment. A weapon, an item of armor, and gems. The good news is, the relative power level of each item is never in doubt.
Moving up to the next level.
  • 5 points for the economy. This is a relatively strong category, since there are multiple ways to earn money (killing monsters, gambling, killing other players) and spend it (weapons, armor, information, bribing the bartender for keys). I was never close to being able to afford the top weapon and armor.
  • 4 points for quests. There's a main quest and a lot of side quests that build the character, though they're mostly too silly to be considered actual role-playing.
  • 2 points for graphics, sound, and input. I can't offer much here since there are only a few ASCII graphics and no sound, but the menu works great.
  • 5 points for gameplay. This is a guess, a halfway point between what my GIMLET technically looks for (nonlinearity, replayability, dignified length and challenge) and what the players of this specific type of game are looking for. 
So that gives us a final score of 35, but really the things I look for on the GIMLET aren't the "point" of this kind of game.
Whatever I think of the experience playing Dragon, it can't be denied that it was wildly successful as BBS games go. According to interviews with Seth Robinson, he sold between 15,000 and 20,000 copies of the game to different BBS operators, and between legitimate copies and pirated ones, it spread around the world. At its peak, there were more than a million sessions per day. Robinson sold the game to Metropolis Gameport, a large BBS operator, in 1998, and they continued to operate it until 2009. As we've seen, there are numerous revivals of Red Dragon online, as well as a browser-based tribute called Legend of the Green Dragon (2002).
Robinson, demonstrating the type of sexual maturity discussed in that Escapist article, went on to design Dink Smallwood (1998), which I imagine I'll eventually get to before I die. Before then, however, he wrote Legend of the Red Dragon II: New World (1992), apparently a very different game from its predecessor. In the 2000s, he transitioned to programming for mobile platforms, and at some point, he moved to Japan. He still runs Robinson Technologies from his new residence, offering a variety of games and utilities.
I've always suspected that multi-player games weren't for me, and this experience mostly confirmed those suspicions while still supplying some interesting material to write about. I recognize, however, that Red Dragon isn't quite the same as a modern MMO, and I still need to get that type of experience under my belt before I draw any final conclusions about the subgenre.

As for whether I'll continue with the online Red Dragon, probably not--but on the other hand, I'm not sure I can let Killer Bunz have the last kill.


  1. It isn't impressive that the game recognizes the prefix "hot" in "hott," but it is neat that it specifically stated how you got it wrong. Was that such a common mistake that there's a dedicated response, or does it have a wide variety of such checks?

    1. It's a dedicated response. I got it from a web site. Just typing HOT doesn't do anything.

    2. Then I must retract my compliment. Regardless, my younger self thanks you for playing one of the games that I couldn't justify spending the time on. Not that my time was valuable, but the phone rates were and most of the BBSes in my area were zone 3 calls. That means the step right below long distance for those of you too young or too far removed to be familiar with US phone nonsense.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. >The offline version features an occasional gnome who shows up during forest hunts and offers games of blackjack using standard casino rules.

    So someone made their own Legend of the Red Dragon. With blackjack and .. uhhh .. well that's it.

  4. You can register multiple people offline, and even be online at the same time by starting multiple Dosbox windows. You can emulate the interactivity that way, if you like killing/flirting with yourself.

    Do you keep gold/equipment on a level reset? That would be a huge power boost and probably make the number of dragons killed the best strength indicator before level.

    1. I don't think you keep equipment, but I didn't get to experience a regular reset.

    2. You lose everything but your levels in your chosen profession from memory. So you can have a character with both 'death knight'and 'thief' moves for instance as you get to choose a new profession on reset. You also keep charm and kids, maybe? It's been a while!

  5. I wonder if Keu is a bot. I guess in some sense, I hope so.

  6. There was also a "space version" of LORD from the same developer called Planets: The Exploration of Space. My vague memories are that it felt pretty much like a reskin of LORD.

  7. My dim recollection is that any time a faint letter appeared in the environment you could push that letter for a secret screen of some kind. I think that might be why your shield has an A on it.

  8. I think I actually played this a bit back in the good old BBS days. I suspect I did not ever get to the point of killing the Red Dragon, however. PVP was not then nor ever became a thing I enjoyed - as soon as I'm in direct competition with other players, I rapidly tire of the stress it produces (because inevitably that leads to griefing and other annoyances).

  9. I wonder what would've Escapist said about sexual maturity after experiencing "Lona RPG"?

    1. So, what's that game got in it? And considering that it's newer, can you be gay in it?

    2. Well, see it for yourself.

  10. "I'm not sure if it's possible to attack characters with a big level variance. I was never killed by anyone more than a level or two above me."

    According to the FAQ on v3.26a, you can not kill someone more than one level down from you in the Inn when you bribe the bartender. I imagine this was implemented to avoid too much griefing / the discouraging effect of repeated kills of low-level newcomers, as experienced in other multiplayer games / MMOs (e.g. later UO)? Even though even so you were still killed every night at the start as you describe... .

    1. Through the artful use of gems, it was possible to max out your character at level 1 after every reset. There were limits on "punching down," but not on "punching up." I would save up gems so that when my character reset, I would use them to juice up my stats and then go hunting for the highest-level player characters. Killing a level 12 character as a level 1 character pretty much shot you straight up to level 12.

    2. Oh, that's clever. I wouldn't have thought of that.

  11. I was into the BBS scene as a teenager, and spent far too much time on this game.

    One of my favorites of that time was Land of Devastation, which was much more of a proper RPG for BBSs. Player-to-player interaction was a bit more limited (you could build bases and attack other players' bases, as well as attack other players if you happened upon them camping out in the map.) It also had a pretty impressive suite of customization tools to build your own scenario for the game.

  12. I never expected one of your crpg posts centering on 'sexual maturity', but here we are ;)

    1. Thinking of that, it's been a while since the last "non-gameplay" post of the Addict. He used to publish some essays about CRPG design every now and then. But maybe he feels he has said on this topic everything he wanted to say.

    2. Yep, I'm missing them as well.

      We have that BG3 post to look forward to though.

    3. They always take longer. I like to get a good batch of regular entries scheduled before I start on one of those. Maybe in the summer.

  13. Thanks for covering this admittedly niche title, as to a lot of us it was nevertheless rather significant during a formative period in our lives -- and interesting connective tissue between the PBM games of the '70s and casual games of the 21st century.

    LORD 2 is in many ways a very different beast, a game of fantasy exploration with a textmode roguelike interface.

    My underground computer artist side will point out that LORD here is demonstrating ANSI art, with colours and block characters in its character mode semigraphics use. (ASCII would be all grey and using primarily box-drawing characters -- slashes, dashes and pipes.) LORD also had some prettier optional RIPscrip vector graphics to offer, but demonstrating them in this day and age may not be a trivial undertaking.

  14. The shield is an advertisement for Alcoholics Anonymous. You can't hide.

    1. AlphabeticalAnonymousApril 16, 2024 at 6:06 PM

      I just assumed it was for me.

    2. Clearly, someone who names their scoring system after a drink is in strong need of help.

  15. Shame that it's frequently punching down and being pointlessly transgressive because otherwise this game actually has a decent sense of humour. And the fact that it's tied into player agency/interaction is ace. I quite enjoyed Dink Smallwood, although I mostly just remember the duck massacre and final boss so maybe there was a whole lot of cringe in between.

  16. Man, this takes me back...

    I played "Legend of the GREEN Dragon" pretty intensely in the early 2000s and even was leaderboard #1 on my server for quite a while.

    It was heavily modded, featuring rich role play / interactions among players AND you could build yourself a player house so other players would have a harder time assassinating you in your sleep.

  17. It's quite a shame that such interesting writing is tied into a game that sounds like a proto-gacha game. It's weird to think that there's a less money-grubbing ancestor of that genre, but then again people have been crazy enough to make gacha games that you don't pay money for.

    That said, I hope this is going to be the last time an online-only, but only technically not, game shows up. As a novelty, interesting, as a continuing thing, it's like every three games is a game as long as Fate only much worse.

  18. "I see online that there is a process by which you can get (ick) sexual favors from the head."

    There was a new Dr. Who story - a few years back - in which a girl was turned into something like an animated paving stone. Her boyfriend stayed with her, and something like this was implied.

    1. Oh jeez that episode! The stone girlfriends face when her boyfriend tells the Doctor that they've found a way to get intimate - her only having a mouth of course. Had me and my girlfriend crying with laughter!

    2. I think the phrase he uses is "love life". It's structured to suggest that he is talking about kissing, but in a way where the audience will think of other things.

  19. In case there are other BBS or multiplayer games you want to at least try for the blog in the future, but there is no online setup or not enough of an 'online community' left for it (unless commenters want to join for the ride), I wonder if an add-on/mod which simulates other players could be an option. Of course it's not the same as the original experience, but maybe still closer than the pure single player offline versions e.g. here or for the original NWN you played?

    For LoRD there was/is 'MZK Lord' which its creator decribes as follows on the respective github page:

    "My addon, MZK Lord, implemented NPC's in a weird and wonderful way. It simulated a number of players - my NPC's - signing in each night and playing, essentially replicating all of the game. I made it update the daily news with those actions. But that wasn't enough. I went further - especially as new versions of LORD came out with new features and abilities. I added a "STOP PRESS!" feature which brightened up the daily news. I added ridiculous fairies in the forest garden. I made NPC's make comments anywhere there was a bulletin board in the game, and even send mail. Hell, I even got my NPC's to engage in "romance" as part of the game features, figuring out Seth's mail codes to leverage them into my addon."

    No idea if they could directly interact with your character and e.g. kill you, though.

  20. Just wanted to share that I absolutely loved Dink Smallwood and replayed it after the gog release, never would have guessed he had am online rpg under his belt before it!


I welcome all comments about the material in this blog, and I generally do not censor them. However, please follow these rules:

1. Do not link to any commercial entities, including Kickstarter campaigns, unless they're directly relevant to the material in the associated blog posting. (For instance, that GOG is selling the particular game I'm playing is relevant; that Steam is having a sale this week on other games is not.) This also includes user names that link to advertising.

2. Please avoid profanity and vulgar language. I don't want my blog flagged by too many filters. I will delete comments containing profanity on a case-by-case basis.

3. NO ANONYMOUS COMMENTS. It makes it impossible to tell who's who in a thread. If you don't want to log in to Google to comment, either a) choose the "Name/URL" option, pick a name for yourself, and just leave the URL blank, or b) sign your anonymous comment with a preferred user name in the text of the comment itself.

4. I appreciate if you use ROT13 for explicit spoilers for the current game and upcoming games. Please at least mention "ROT13" in the comment so we don't get a lot of replies saying "what is that gibberish?"

5. Comments on my blog are not a place for slurs against any race, sex, sexual orientation, nationality, religion, or mental or physical disability. I will delete these on a case-by-case basis depending on my interpretation of what constitutes a "slur."

Blogger has a way of "eating" comments, so I highly recommend that you copy your words to the clipboard before submitting, just in case.

I read all comments, no matter how old the entry. So do many of my subscribers. Reader comments on "old" games continue to supplement our understanding of them. As such, all comment threads on this blog are live and active unless I specifically turn them off. There is no such thing as "necro-posting" on this blog, and thus no need to use that term.

I will delete any comments that simply point out typos. If you want to use the commenting system to alert me to them, great, I appreciate it, but there's no reason to leave such comments preserved for posterity.

I'm sorry for any difficulty commenting. I turn moderation on and off and "word verification" on and off frequently depending on the volume of spam I'm receiving. I only use either when spam gets out of control, so I appreciate your patience with both moderation tools.