Inform - Resources - Examples

The Six Standard Examples

Inform comes with a standard set of example games in source code form. These games are meant as examples of craft rather than art, and are not primarily intended for playing, but Advent remains a classic well worth exploring if you never have.

From these pages you can not only download the examples, but also browse them online, divided up into logical chunks and syntax-coloured to make the structure more visible. (Syntax colouring is the electronic version of printing out the source code on paper and then going through it with a highlighter pen to show the significant parts.)

Browse Advent.inf  (1976-7)  Will Crowther and Don Woods Download  
The first recognisable work of interactive fiction was this classic treasure hunt, set in a simulation of the Mammoth and Flint Ridge caves. This is a mostly faithful Inform version, with a few historical notes appended.
Browse Adventureland.inf  (1979)  Scott Adams Download  
Another historical milestone: the first game to become widely played on early microcomputers, and the first of several dozen to exploit Scott Adams's highly compact format. (It makes an interesting example, too, because its style and layout of descriptions is unusual.)
Browse Balances.inf  (1994)  Graham Nelson, after Infocom Download  
This short story is a pastiche of Infocom's Enchanter trilogy (1983-5) of magical fantasy games, though none of the puzzles or locations are the same. It was written specifically to demonstrate parser-based problems, so that the game includes the naming of items during play, collections of indistinguishable items, coinage and so on.
Browse Toyshop.inf  (1995)  Graham Nelson Download  
Another miniature game, which complements Balances in that it is based on object-based problems, such as piling a stack of building blocks.
Browse Museum.inf  (1995)  Graham Nelson Download  
No kind of story, but instead a repository for curiosities of all kinds laid out in a virtual museum. Many of the exhibits became exercise solutions in the Designer's Manual, in some cases with minor improvements, but the original Museum is still worth going back to.
Browse Ruins.inf  (2001)  Graham Nelson Download  
Ruins, a tale of 1930s archaeology in Central America, is the running example used in the fourth edition of the Designer's Manual, built up from its first lines to this final version (collated by Roger Firth).
Alice: An Inform Tutorial  (1995)  Gareth Rees Link  
An introduction to Inform, demonstrating the implementation of a tricky puzzle. Full source code included.

Last updated 23 June 2004. This site is no longer supported; information may be out of date.
Maintained as a historical archive by the Interactive Fiction Technology Foundation. Copyright 1993-2018 IFTF, CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.
This page was originally managed by Graham Nelson ( assisted by C Knight.