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For all systems. To play, you'll need a TADS 2 Interpreter - visit tads.org for interpreter downloads.
Walkthrough and maps
Verbose walkthrough and maps by David Welbourn.

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by Bonnie Montgomery


(based on 25 ratings)
4 member reviews

About the Story

"Firebird is based on the Old Russian folk tales that inspired the Stravinsky piece of the same name. You are Prince Ivan, and have been charged by your father, the tsar, to find the Firebird that has been stealing your father's golden apples. Your two older brothers have already tried and failed -- can you triumph over the many obstacles in your quest? Remember, your mission is not as simple as it first seems..."
[author's blurb, from The (Other) TADS Games List version 1.2]

Game Details

Language: English (en)
Current Version: Release 1.01
License: Freeware
Development System: TADS 2
Baf's Guide ID: 86
IFID: TADS2-75EDCD69F411C5589608553F54046B93
TUID: d9h1r3d920ap8ajf

Editorial Reviews

Baf's Guide

A pleasant game, made of various bits of Russian folk tales, plus extraneous elements added for humorous effect. You play Prince Ivan, the youngest of three brothers and the last to be sent in search of the firebird that's been stealing your father's golden apples. Lots of threefold repetitions and other fairy-tale motifs. Easy puzzles, a few lengthy noninteractive scenes, and something like a maze (but mappable on a grid). Consistently amusing, with lots of exaggeration (including some exaggerated violence). A joy to play. Beginners will probably like this one.

-- Carl Muckenhoupt

What's Big and Bright and Covered in Feathers?
Firebird does an admirable job following the conventions and style of faerie tales... characters are princes and princesses or tsars and tsarina's in disguise, buildings are made of silver, gold, or the appropriate sparkly material of choice, and events tend to fall in threes, creating a nice playing rhythm with the repetitions. For the most part these repetitions help rather than hinder the flow of the game. (Charon)
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Reviews from Duncan Stevens and Paul O'Brian

Stevens: "If Firebird encouraged more research into backgrounds of games, and more innovative settings, it might lead to more creative games, never a bad thing. In its own right, it's a worthy effort."

O'Brian: "Firebird proves beyond a doubt that the intersection between folk tale and IF is a fertile one."
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Based on Russian folklore this game has a decent storyline, relatively simple puzzles and a fairytale ending. [...] Although, even my limited knowledge of Russian folklore told me that a few of the humour elements contained therein weren't quite authentic, eg. the chefs, which made me smile and so probably achieved their purpose (unless I'm missing something of course). (Nick Edmunds)
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Member Reviews

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Number of Reviews: 4
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Most Helpful Member Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
A lengthy retelling of a Russian folk tale in parser form, July 30, 2016
This game does a good job of recreating the feel of an old Russian folk tale, similar to the feel in Grimm's fairy tales.

You are tasked with finding the mythical Firebird. In your journey, you'll encounter frogs to kiss, princesses to court, series of 3 or 4 objects in a row with increasing magical properties, and so on.

The game was quite enchanting, although it comes from an earlier era of the internet that was somewhat less sensitive to some hot-topic issues today (like culture); however, part of this may just be tongue-in-cheek, poking fun at the same insensitivity in old myths.

A delightful game for fans of fairy tales.

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Never thought I'll visit the island Bouyan in IF, February 23, 2016
by Sobol (Russia)
A curious mix of Russian folklore and American humor. Being a Russian, I was delighted to see familiar fairytale motives and phrases like "speedily a tale is spun, with much less speed a deed is done" (скоро сказка сказывается, да не скоро дело делается), "are you here to shirk a task or to find one?" (дела пытаешь аль от дела лытаешь?), "three times nine" (тридевять), etc.

The game is rather old-school - even for 1998. The world is sparingly implemented, there are some minor guess-the-verb moments - but it's funny and light-hearted, the puzzles aren't hard, there are multiple solutions (be sure to check the AMUSING section), and the "good" ending really has a na´ve fairytale charm (while the "evil" ending - the one where you (Spoiler - click to show)side with Katschei the Deathless - is, um...). There's a big maze in the game - but you won't need mapping it.

P. S. I was able to kiss almost everyone from the bear to Baba Yaga without anybody protesting. Well, I suppose being a prince has its benefits.

Folk tale hero, February 5, 2014
This is a great little gem of a game that is exactly as advertised. Russian folk tales converted into an adventure. Granted, I don't know much about Russian folk tales, but many of the elements seem right out of Grim's Fairy tales. The prevalence of threes, the animals, etc. This game is also not without a good dose of humor. MOST of the actions I thought to do were accounted for, but some really obvious sounding solutions are conspicuously absent.

There are some really bizarre circumstances that can happen in the game, like getting your hand chopped off. I'm intrigued enough to go back and find out what happens if you allow this to happen and if you can still win.

All and all, a solid adventure!

See All 4 Member Reviews

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Recommended Lists

Firebird appears in the following Recommended Lists:

Danielle's Classic IF List by Danielle
Traditional adventure games, filled with happy puzzles. Only thing is, you don't need a fancy video card to see the great graphics. Instead, just add imagination.

Best fairytale/nursery rhyme games by MathBrush
A selection of fairy tale games, nursery rhyme games, or games involving the Fair Folk.


The following polls include votes for Firebird:

Fast-paced action scenes by Juhana
Fast-paced action is something that's notoriously hard to do in IF where waiting for player's input necessarily pauses the game every turn. Which games have succeeded in creating action scenes that convey the sense of urgency, danger and...

Solved without Hints by joncgoodwin
I'm very interested in hearing truthful accounts of at least somewhat difficult games (or games that don't solve themselves at least) solved completely without recourse to hints, walkthroughs, etc.

Games with mysticism by Anya Johanna DeNiro
What I'm looking for are games that aren't "other-world" fantasy, but rather use one of the following as part of its thematic underpinnings: Renaissance magic, Neoplatonism, hermeticism, gnosticism, alchemy, or any other kind of...

See all polls with votes for this game


This is version 10 of this page, edited by David Welbourn on 19 June 2015 at 10:18pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item