This doesn't belong on the gaming SE, so I'm trying my luck here. I'm looking for any info I can get on an old game that I simply known as "Haunt.bat".
Here is the back-story: In the mid 90's a relative of mine purchased a PC. I don't recall the exact year, it sat around doing nothing for a good deal of time.
The PC had a 3.5" floppy drive, a 5.25" floppy drive, and a CD Rom drive. Yes, the trifecta.
It ran Windows 3.1
It came with one of the keyboards you used to see that had a huge placard with a ton of (Corel?) hotkey shortcuts printed on it. At least 50...
The PC came pre-loaded with:
- Specifically this version of Bricks (1984):
- Commander Keen 1 (1990):
- Mickey's ABC's (1992):
(So the PC was definitely purchased after or during 1992, this is the newest piece of software on it that I recall.)
It also contained two files: "haunt.bat" and "haunt.com". The "com" part may be just a false recollection, but I am positive haunt.bat was what I used to launch the game, and I am sure that the game wasn't just a sprawling batch file. These files were in a generic "games" folder, or directly on the C drive, I can not recall.
Launching the batch file presented you with the text title of the game (no graphics at all), which I believe was "Haunted Mansion" or "Haunted House" something like that.
You start in a room in a house, you immediately find a silver bullet or knife (something silver). You almost immediately encounter a werewolf that you cannot kill. Trying to shoot, stab, or do anything to the werewolf would just end in game-over. I always just died at the werewolf, I recall finding the silver item and thinking "yes! I can finally kill it" then, as per many c80's games, was greeted with "you tried to shoot it..." or "you can't shoot it", something like that.
There are no graphics, no bestiary, no inventory on screen, no list of available directions. No asking for your name, no asking for kin, etc. It just starts.
I have been searching for 20 years.
These games are not it:
- Haunted House (TRS80):
This game does not feature a werewolf, or any silver items.
- HAUNT (DEC20):
Couldn't find any real working copies of this, but I did manage to find some source code. No werewolf, but there are silver candlesticks.
- Adventure 3 - Haunted Mansion (C64):
I heard that if you move around outside before going into the house for too long there's a surprise... but the surprise appears to be that your movements are nonlinear and you constantly get lost and move in circles, not a werewolf. Going into the house you can move around a lot, and you're immediately confronted with a small ghost that can eventually kill you and put you in "LIMBO" which did not happen in the game I'm trying to find. Lots of exploring yielded no werewolf.
- Windsloe Mansion:
This game starts outside a "Blair House", not in the haunted mansion. It talks a ton about "Pumpkin Man", who I do not recall. It also has a visable on-screen inventory and list of visible objects.
Asks for name, kin, etc. The name is obviously Transylvania, not anything Haunted.
Through Reddit I have learned of a game called "CastleQuest" that was available through Compuserve. This game sounds like the my haunt.bat.
The problem is that this game apparently does not exist anymore, at all. Not even the original programmers have any of the code:
I have asked this question here:
Someone else has seemingly asked the same question previously:
Neither have any resolutions, but both point toward "CastleQuest".
The only issue (besides it's complete non-existence) is that I absolutely did not access this game through Compuserve. I had an available internet connection, but connecting was a big deal back in the day, and I played this game with no connection, guaranteed. Even if the batch file accessed Compuserve for me, I would have been dead in the water with no internet connection. Of course, it's possible that the game was ported, but if that's the case I would imagine that at least someone would know about it.
I was reluctant to post this here, but chat convinced me to give it a shot. If anyone knows anything else this old game could be, please give me some leads.