WILDERLAND (WL) allows you to see what's REALLY going on in this wonderful
world created by Veronika Megler and Philip Mitchell in 1982 at Melbourne
House. It runs the original game code in a rudimentary Spectrum emulator,
while displaying the state of objects and animals, the current positions of
the latter, and a log what all the other creatures (NPC) do while Bilbo is
in one place.
Screenshots (click to enlarge)
Starting screen of Wilderland
The download package contains the C source-files, a compiled version of Wilderland, additional files, the README.TXT but NOT the original game-code!
While playing The Hobbit in the 80ies I couldn't find out what this cryptic message "This room is too full for you to enter." meant (which appears when you try to go east from the 'Montains'). Afraid that I miss an important part of the game I started looking into the code. - But with only my ZX Spectrum, a 9-needle printer, and not too much knowledge in programming I didn't come very far.
Years later I transferred the game to PC and started again with better tools. This time I revealed the database-like game structure (words, sentences, rooms, and objects are stored in extensive tables) and some parts of the - very complex - parser. At this point I started dreaming of an environment to run the game. This should allow me to see what's going on, where the animals roam around, what's happening to all the objects etc. With little processor power and limited screen resolutions the project ceased again.
Last year I stumbled across 'Pelles C' and the 'SDL Graphics Library'. This time my dream came true! I could create a universe to run The Hobbit in. (As I am no programmer everything was done quite crude, but it worked).