Saturday, December 26, 2009


There's this old game released in 1993 called Companions of Xanth. It's based off a Piers Anthony book called Demons Don't Dream. I never read the book but I LOVED the game. Of course in 1993 I was 8 so I couldn't really appreciate the puns and metaphors that make up the game. Almost every character in the game has a name that is a pun. A great deal of the dialog is puns. There's puzzles and riddles and all kinds of fun word play. I love word play!

Anyway I've been wanting to play this game again for several months but I couldn't for the life of me remember the name of the game, the characters, the release date. Nothing. I searched and searched through databases of video games released in the 1990s but I wasn't finding anything that sounded familiar besides stuff like Bomberman, Final Fantasy VII, and 007 Goldeneye. Not exactly what I was looking for! Finally I called my brother and asked him if he remembered. This hurt my pride a little because I was so determined to find it on my own. It was worth it though because he remembered immediately what I was talking about and gave me the title of the game!

With the title I was able to find an emulator for the game and I'm currently playing through right now! I remember a lot from when I was younger so that's helping solve the puzzles. It's not really a hard game to begin with. I'm playing it for the nostalgia mostly. I'm so glad that I found it and was able to download it for free. It's a lot of fun. Cute and silly with a lot of "Ha! See what they did there?!" with puns and metaphors.

One of the things that always amused me was the metaphors in the game. They're taken very literally. If you kick a bucket in the game you die. Also don't bite any dust! I don't remember if anyone offers to sell you a farm but I wouldn't buy that either! For someone who loves word play it's an excellent game. I think word play is the highest form of language. Knowing your language so well that you can alter it to hilarious ends is a fantastic ability. There are native English speakers in our country who can't enjoy puns because they just haven't learned enough grammar and vocabulary to understand them. That makes me really sad.

Word play is very close to my heart and so are video games! Any childhood favorites that you would love to get hold of? Maybe some vague memories of a game that influenced your life? I would love to hear about other's childhood game memories! Maybe we share some favorites!

And now back to the game!

Update 11:30PM 12/25/09: Just finished Companions of Xanth! It's not a very long game. Total play time was probably 4-6 hours over about 3 days. It's not a long game but it was still lots of fun. Just like I remember it! Only this time around I could fully appreciate the puns! It was worth looking up. I'm really glad I was able to find it again and play. I'm so grateful for the internet and all it has to offer, especially when it comes to old bootlegged games! Maybe I'll look up some more old games from my childhood.

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