♦ Livestream of the ZZT world "Software Visions ZZT Pack (Registered)" by Alexis Janson, Matt Williams (1996) [https://museumofzzt.com/file/view/svzztreg/]. ♦
♦ Play this world directly in your browser ♦
The world famous Code Red! Alexis Janson's most famous ZZT release, (arguably a three way tie with Super Tool Kit and Mission: Enigma, but I'm trying to promote the dang thing here,) starring a perfectly average teenage boy with a rifle.
The origin of so many unfinished games promising to be hundreds of boards long with dozens of ending, Code Red manages to actually pull it off, with eight different endings across three files in an era where even a second ZZT file for a game was unheard of.
Young Kyle Lipschitz mills about the house on the weekend, mostly causing a relentless amount of destruction as he accidentally(?) attacks his brother, blows up the computer, does some work on the gas line, breaks a plant, evaporates a fish and more. These seemingly meaningless actions can have more of an impact than you might expect, updating both the clock and people's attitudes towards you, making the home perhaps ZZT's most famous.
For our first ending we head outside to mayyyybe put a letter in the mail for our mother about this illegal toxic waste thing going on in sunny California, only to be accosted by gangsters that kidnap you. After a rather fortunate escape from a deadly Rube Goldberg machine, Kyle crawls his way through the sewers, emerging at a bus stop. Finds a ticket, and proceeds to the TV station which has, of course, been conquered by aliens preparing to take over the Earth.
It kind of goes places, this game.
A pretty wild adventure with a lot of unexpected moments, some clever puzzles, and an incredibly annoying telephone. Alas, despite the game's success and occasional update to tweak name/company credits, this ending in particular has some bugs that prevent it from being winnable. Normally, that's not too big of a surprise, but Code Red was the biggest name game in ZZT for years after its release. Join us next Friday for another ending, perhaps with fewer issues. (Which, given the fan made walkthrough that lists all the bugs, is basically a certainty.)
♦ Originally streamed on September 15th, 2023 ♦