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 "The 40th level is Death"

A graphical Roguelike for Mac OS, created by John Raymonds and distributed as unencumbered Shareware from 1985-1987. Fondly remembered for its colorful bestiary, which drew on Dungeons and Dragons, Celtic Mythology, and a quirky sense of humor ("The Floor hits!").

The game deliberately cultivates an air of mystery around itself; rather than provide a Monster Compendium, it offers 26 esoteric "Rumors" such as "Beauty can tame a beast," "A Sethron is 63" tall," and "Roni is life." (Except there's no mention of any "Roni" in the entire actual game. Best guess is that the programmer loved Rice-A-Roni.)

In 1987, an overhauled version was published by Woodrose Editions as The Dungeon Revealed (so named for the included source code). To spread the word, Raymonds circulated an updated Dungeon of Doom with the version number cranked from 4.0 to 5.4 (even though the only change was the plug for Revealed.) However, gamers who had already beaten the original and/or paid $25 for it had little incentive to pay $37.50 for the rerelease. (Among its improvements was compatibility with color Macs, yet what artwork was new remained black and white. Other additions included digitized sounds, secret rooms, and one new monster.) Today, the Dungeon remains best known under its original name.


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