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Zork III (Windows) *
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Zork III (Mac)
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Zork III
z machine
For all systems. To play, you'll need a Z-Machine Interpreter - visit Brass Lantern for download links.
Zork Trilogy Maps *
Maps for Zork 1, 2, and 3 in the GUEmap format.
GUEmap file. Requires the GUEmap viewer - visit http://www.cjmweb.net/GUEmap for information.
Hints
Scroll past the Zork I and II hints for a few helpful tips.
Solution *
Solutions to many IF games including Zork I - III
* Compressed with ZIP. Free Unzip tools are available for most systems at www.info-zip.org.

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Zork III

by Dave Lebling and Marc Blank

Episode 3 of Zork
Fantasy / Zorkian / Cave crawl
1982

(based on 58 ratings)
2 member reviews

About the Story

An old, oddly youthful man turns toward you slowly. His long, silver hair dances about him as a fresh breeze blows. "You have reached the final test, my friend! You are proved clever and powerful, but this is not yet enough! Seek me when you feel yourself worthy!"

Zork III: The Dungeon Master draws you into the deepest and most mysterious reaches of the Great Underground Empire. Nothing is as it seems. And the one responsible for the shadow and darkness - the Dungeon Master - embodies the greatest mystery of all.

In this test of wisdom and courage, you will face countless dangers. But what awaits you at the culmination of your odyssey is well worth risking all.

Difficulty: Advanced

Game Details

Language: English (en)
Current Version: Release 17 / Serial number 840727
License: Commercial
Development System: ZIL
Forgiveness Rating: Cruel
IFIDs:  ZCODE-10-820818
ZCODE-15-830331
ZCODE-16-830410
ZCODE-15-840518
ZCODE-17-840727
ZCODE-17-840727-2E7A
TUID: vrsot1zgy1wfcdru

Sequel to Zork II, by Dave Lebling, Marc Blank
Adapted from Zork, by Tim Anderson, Marc Blank, Bruce Daniels, and Dave Lebling

Editorial Reviews

Adventure Classic Gaming

In some ways, Zork III: The Dungeon Master is the original Myst clone. There is a sliding blocks puzzle and some mechanical puzzles, all in the context of little plot and lots of ambience. There are also some standard inventory based problems, and a few very strange people to deal with. As such, there is not much of a story to propel you through the dungeon, just your love of exploration.
-- David Tanguay
See the full review

SPAG
Gloom and emptyness
It is hard to put a label on the mood of Zork III -- "brooding," perhaps, but that would make it more ominous than it is. If anything, it seems like a T.S. Eliot scene, with its barren landscapes and wisps of mist and enigmatic encounters with unidentified characters. (...) The adjective "gray" never appears, as far as I can tell, in any of the room descriptions in Zork III, and yet there is a grayness about the game environment that makes the feel of the game far more real, more coherent, than the other two, even if the scenes themselves are less picturesque than those of Zork II.
-- Duncan Stevens
See the full review

SynTax
A smaller game than Zork I and II and this time you are not collecting treasures. The parsing is good and the descriptions of locations excellent as usual, with plenty of atmosphere.
-- Joan Dunn
See the full review

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Member Reviews

5 star:
(17)
4 star:
(21)
3 star:
(18)
2 star:
(2)
1 star:
(0)
Average Rating:
Number of Reviews: 2
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
A difficult end to the trilogy, March 17, 2010
by tggdan3 (Michigan)
This game picks up where Zork 2 left off (minus your inventory- I really could have used that magic wand!). You're stumbling down an endless stair to a cavern where you find your old friend, the brass lantern.

This game departs a bit from the first 2 games, in that the object is not to find all the treasures and drop them in a case. You're still looking for all the treasures, but they aren't apparant as such, and the game is looking for certain behaviors from you.

One complaint on this game is that one of the puzzles (the most important one, you might argue) is timed, so in order to gain the permanent light source, and one of the treasures, you need to do the puzzle RIGHT AWAY, otherwise you render the game unwinnable. And in Zork 3, it is easy to make the game unwinnable and not realize it.

It was possible in Zork 1 and 2 also, though it was much more apprarant- if you died at the volcano and you left some treasures in the balloon- they were unreachable. In Zork 3, you need to decide at one point whether to go for a staff or treasure, how to respond to a mysterious viking ship, choose between to solutions to a shifting wall puzzle, decide what items to try to steal during a time travel puzzle, decide whether to kill someone attacking you or not (and the choice is not obvious),decide WHEN to do a puzzle involving teleportation- and the wrong selection on any of them makes the game unwinnable, and you never realize it as such unless you go back and do things the RIGHT way.

Now, I don't know that this is UNFAIR, because I like difficulty, I would only wish I knew what I was supposed to do before I screwed myself up. If you do what many people might and explore the entire world right away, you've already lost too much time.

That being said, some of the puzzles are freaking BRILLIANT! A puzzle where you need to slide a mirror is difficult to visualize, but very smart. The shifting room puzzle gave me that real "AHA" moment as well. The time travel puzzle makes sense when you think about it, it's just not exactly clear how time travel relates to the time machine itself. If you're a fan of Zork I and II then you shouldn't be really surprised by the solution of the mysterious ship puzzle, and you should relish the chance of being able to walk past some grues in the dark. (A feat you will repeat in Spellbreaker, and possibly in Sorcerer).

The game does tie up the trilogy nicely, provides a good ending point, and gives you the challenge you deserve, without bogging you down in inventory management (very much) or much of a light puzzle (if you run out of light you either missed the first puzzle or did something stupid, like entering a lake with a torch).

If you like Zork I and II you will like this as well, just be ready for a bit more serious a tone and more difficult puzzles.

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
A haunting and evocative finale to the Zork series., February 3, 2016
by MathBrush
Related reviews: Infocom
The finale in the Zork series is a big change from the first two games. The game is smaller as to puzzles and map, but much bigger on ambiance. This game feels like a refining purgatory, with a chance to demonstrate your courage, mercy, trust, and bravery. The setting is dreamlike and thoughtful. The puzzles are very difficult. For all of them, it is easy to try to solve them, get part way through, and have no idea if you succeeded or failed. Almost all of them are time-based, requiring you to wait, do several actions in succession, or to return frequently to a given place. Some places (like the land of shadow or the viewing table) will stay in my mind for a long time.

The Royal Puzzle breaks up the gameplay a bit, but I loved it. I first solved it in MIT Zork; as a mathematician that is terrible at most IF puzzles, it was fun to have a puzzle that I could finally solve on my own. I literally used a walkthrough on every other puzzle in this game.

If you enjoyed Zork III...

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Polls

The following polls include votes for Zork III:

Your very first game. by DustyCypress
Do you still remember when you played your very first IF? How did you get drawn (and perhaps addicted) to IF and have been playing still? What was the title that started it all for you? I started with a collection called "The Adventure...

Vivid games by Jeff Sonas
I'm looking for games that evoked strong feelings or strong mental images that stayed with you long after you finished the games.

New Game Challenges by tggdan3
User-made challenges for existing IF games meant to make the game harder/more fun

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