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I'm trying to find an old game:

  • Played on an old computer, not sure which kind. (early/late 1990s?)
  • Graphics were grid-based and "8-bit-seeming". Locations included plains and caves.
  • Movement was grid-based as well. I think the game was turn-based?
  • The main character - which you moved around - might've been a gnome? Maybe not, though.
  • One of the enemies which I remember clearly is a snake which usually does not move but "wakes up" when you're on the same row or column as it (unobstructed). It would then move (in a straight line only?) towards you. EDIT: Or actually - it might've killed you instantly in this case?

Edit2: I think you could move between "screens" freely. (Aka either it wasn't level-based, or the levels were larger than a single screen)

That's it for any reliable memories, I'm afraid.

4 Answers 4

4

Could it have been one of the DROD (Deadly Rooms Of Death) games?

  • Played on an old computer, not sure which kind. (early/late 1990s?)

The first game came out in 1996 for Windows 95 and 3.1.

  • Graphics were grid-based and "8-bit-seeming". Locations included plains and caves.
  • Movement was grid-based as well. I think the game was turn-based?

I think you could move between "screens" freely. (Aka either it wasn't level-based, or the levels were larger than a single screen)

Yes to all of those. The graphics were redone a few years later and then looked like this: still pretty primitive though.

  • The main character - which you moved around - might've been a gnome? Maybe not, though.

Beethro Budkin is human, but he's so ugly that you might mistake him for a gnome. In the redrawn graphics he's even uglier.

  • One of the enemies which I remember clearly is a snake which usually does not move but "wakes up" when you're on the same row or column as it (unobstructed). It would then move (in a straight line only?) towards you.

The evil eyes (shown in the second screenshot) fit your description except that they aren't snakes. There are also snakes, but they're always awake.

EDIT: Or actually - it might've killed you instantly in this case?

There is another monster type (Aumtlich) that paralyzes you in line of sight, which tends to be fatal, but they first appeared in the third game, released in 2007.

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  • 1
    No, though my love for DROD is definitely what resurfaced the memory of this game :) Apr 13, 2023 at 20:11
  • @secondperson Oh well.
    – benrg
    Apr 13, 2023 at 20:17
2

Could it be Paganitzu? It has snakes, caves, turn-based, etc.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vF1JKxiu0XU

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  • Thanks, but I don't think that's it (though the snake mechanic does look somewhat similar). The game I remember had, at or near the start, plains, while Paganitzu seems to be fully set inside caves. (Edited in to question). Jun 5, 2019 at 19:23
  • Could've been a cheap knockoff of Paganitzu, though... Jun 5, 2019 at 19:33
2

It doesn't match all of your points 100%, but could you be thinking of Adventures of Lolo or Eggerland which it was based on?

  • Played on an old computer, not sure which kind. (early/late 1990s?)
  • Graphics were grid-based and "8-bit-seeming". Locations included plains and caves.

It's a NES game from 1989. Mostly in a cave-like castle.

  • Movement was grid-based as well. I think the game was turn-based?

Not turn based and movement is free, but objects are originally positioned on a grid.

  • The main character - which you moved around - might've been a gnome? Maybe not, though.

No on this point.

  • One of the enemies which I remember clearly is a snake which usually does not move but "wakes up" when you're on the same row or column as it (unobstructed). It would then move (in a straight line only?) towards you. EDIT: Or actually - it might've killed you instantly in this case?

The version that kills you instantly definitely exists, perhaps the moving one too.

1
  • Thanks, but it's not it either. I've edited the question with one difference my memories have over both Lolo and Paganitzu. Jun 6, 2019 at 20:29
1

Could it be Super ZZT?

Screenshot

  • Played on an old computer, not sure which kind. (early/late 1990s?)

✅ Released in 1992 and can run on almost any DOS PC.

  • Graphics were grid-based and "8-bit-seeming". Locations included plains and caves.

✅ CGA text mode graphics that look very typical of the 8-bit era

  • Movement was grid-based as well. I think the game was turn-based?

✅ Grid-based movement. ❌ Not turn-based but runs on a slow enough clock that it might feel turn-based.

  • The main character - which you moved around - might've been a gnome? Maybe not, though.

❌ The main character is a blue/white happyface. You do sometimes play as a dwarf in its spiritual successor, MegaZeux. These games have a distinct DnD vibe, so gnomes wouldn't be unusual.

  • One of the enemies which I remember clearly is a snake which usually does not move but "wakes up" when you're on the same row or column as it (unobstructed). It would then move (in a straight line only?) towards you. EDIT: Or actually - it might've killed you instantly in this case?

✅ There are snakes. Snakes with sensitivity zero only move when they're rank/file aligned with you. They only deal 10 damage, but on some rooms, being dealt any damage warps you back to the room entrance. You could be remembering this as "death."

Edit2: I think you could move between "screens" freely. (Aka either it wasn't level-based, or the levels were larger than a single screen)

✅ Has an interconnected world made of distinct rooms. Progress is based on finding colour-coded keys and doors.

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  • Thanks, but no - it's not ZZT and it wasn't text based. I'm pretty sure it was much more obscure. Apr 19, 2023 at 18:49

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