When you talk about interactive fiction the first name that usually comes to mind is Infocom who released a lot of great titles back when these titles were very popular. The lurking horror is the one and only horror game they released though. You play the part of a student at GUE tech university who’s just gone through a snowstorm trying to get into the computer room so you can finish the termpaper scheduled for tomorrow. Everything goes wrong however as the campus network trashes your files and while trying to find out what happened you come across bizzarre things happening inside the campus like sacrifices and horrible creatures. Can you escape from this nightmare alive and then finish your term paper before it’s too late.

Anyone remotely with infocom games or even interactive fiction should feel right at home with this game. Commands can be typed in and will be executed if the parser understands you intention, which is part of the difficulty for every interactive fiction title. You start the game behind your computer screen but soon the files are scrambled and the only one who can take a better look is the hacker sitting next to you who won’t help unless you provide him with something tasty. Things soon go bad as you’re trying to get to the alchemy lab which is where the problems originated from according to the hacker. The campus is large but many exits are blocked because of the snowstorm which traps you inside a much smaller space and as if that wasn’t enough you are faced with plenty of dangers from creatures and other hazards. Death can be at every corner as just turning off your flashlight or not having one can lead to disaster so be prepared at all times. The entire game is filled with subtle horror and just reading some of the descriptions gives you an eery feel which is incredible.

The lurking horror was one of the last textonly games that infocom released as later ones had graphics incorperated or were not textbased at all. The amiga and atari st versions had sound effects which sometimes had great effect, you can’t underestimate the sound of a creepy door slowly opening at just the right moment. As most infocom games the writing in this one is excellent and there are some specific things that I liked about it like the fact that the computer you are using uses a graphical interface since you have to click on certain things to get them to work. Anyone interested in interactive fiction should have this game in their collection so get it now if you haven’t got it yet.

Overal rating: 8.5/10

Erde Kaiser

This game was released for several different systems here are some notes:

Amiga Released in 1987.
This along with the ST version are the only ones with sound effects.
DOS Released in 1987.
Others These versions are not available.
Amstrad CPC released in 1987.
Apple released in 1987.
Atari 8-bit released in 1987.
Commodore 64 released in 1987.
Date added May-23-2008 10:55
Name Lurking horror, the
Developer Infocom
Publisher Infocom
First released 1987
Genre Interactive Fiction