Caverns of Larn (The)

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theIMPOSTER - 11/09/2015
This was my first personal Rogue-like. I played it for countless hours. It led to me designing mods and MOBs for DikuMUD, which, of course, led to EverQuest and the downfall of nerds as martyrs and the glory of gamerdom. All hail ATASCII (ok, ASCII will do in a pinch.)

Screenshots - Caverns of Larn (The)

Caverns of Larn (The) atari screenshot
Caverns of Larn (The) atari screenshot
Caverns of Larn (The) atari screenshot
Caverns of Larn (The) atari screenshot
Caverns of Larn (The) atari screenshot
Caverns of Larn (The) atari screenshot
Caverns of Larn (The) atari screenshot
Caverns of Larn (The) atari screenshot
Caverns of Larn (The) atari screenshot

Information - Caverns of Larn (The)

GenreAdventure - RPG (Text)Year1988
LanguageCompiled CPublisher[no publisher]
ResolutionLow / Medium / HighLicensed from-

Caesar, Cornelius

Graphic Artist(s)


Game design

Morgan, Noah

Box / InstructionsEnglish


LicensePD / Freeware / Shareware
Sound FX


Cover Artist(s)ST TypeST, STe / 0.5MB
Dumpdownload atari Caverns of Larn (The) Download / MSANumber of Disks1 / Single Sided

Additional Comments - Caverns of Larn (The)

Based on an original UNIX-sources by Noah Morgan.

Instructions - Caverns of Larn (The)

 LARN (version 12.0) for the Atari ST

 LARN is a program in the Public Domain, which has been written first for
 UNIX systems (and also has been ported to OS-9).

 I rewrote the sourcecode for the Atari ST for use with the Lattice C
 compiler (3.04). I had to change the IO parts and the terminal emulation
 (the original program expects a VT100, which allows the use of scroll
 regions). The playing parts of the game remained equal.

 The original UNIX code contains some functions which are only useful for
 a multi-user system (e.g. getting the user id, ...). I removed all of
 these. Also the UNIX program does not allow to copy the save file. This
 cannot be tested on the ST and is therefore possible. (I do not expect
 all ST's running with a valid date/time setting.) It is your own decision
 to cheat instead of playing a honest game ...

 I did not change the original README file (now named README.UNX) which
 also contains the authors name. Of course the specific UNIX hints do not
 apply to this version.

 You need the following files to play LARN on the ST:
         - LARN.TTP
         - LARNMAZE.DAT
         - LARNHELP.TXT
         - LFORTUNE
 The file 'LARNOPTS' has been added as an example how to use it. You should
 modify it to suit your needs (or remove it anyway). If you do not fill in
 a playername the name 'ATARI' will be used for the highscore table.
 Since the highscore file 'LSCORE12.0' will always be expanded (or created
 if it does not exist) you should not play LARN from a write protected disk.

 It might to useful to play from RAM-disk to increase the speed of loading
 helpfiles, etc. (they will always be loaded from the current path).

 The savefile (named 'LARN.SAV' if you do not specify another name in the
 optionsfile) can have a length of up to 130 KB if you save within the
 deeper levels of the cave, so be sure to have enough disk space left.

 By the way: When you are restoring a game from a savefile the program
 reads the optionsfile first and uses the specified player name and other

 Some informations can be found in the file DEFINIT.TXT. I took them out
 of the source code but they are not well explained.

 You start the program without options for a normal game. 'LARN.TTP -h'
 gives the possible starting options and the Help-Key (or '?') shows the
 file LARNHELP.TXT during the game.

 The difficulty level can be choosen very large since it is an integer
 value, but be careful! Games at about difficulty=10 can hardly be won,
 the monsters are nearly invincible.


    LARN must not be sold commercially  !!


 I am interested in new versions of LARN if anyone tries to enhance the game.

 Cornelius Caesar                                              July 7, 1988
 Gundelhardtstr. 3                          (Translation: January 30, 1989)
 D-6238 Hofheim/Ts. 7
 West Germany

 and until spring of 1989:

 Cornelius Caesar                      E-Mail:   EARN/BITNET: I0908@DKAFHS1
 Klosterweg 28 L 506                     Tel.:   +49 - 7 21 - 69 04 262
 D-7500 Karlsruhe 1                              07 21/69 04 262 (Germany)
 West Germany


   T   H   E       C   A   V   E   R   N   S       O   F       L   A   R   N

    Welcome  to  the game of Larn.  At this moment,  you face  a great problem.
 Your daughter has contracted a strange disease, and none of your home remedies
 seem to have any effect.  You sense that she is in mortal danger, and you must
 try to save her. Time ago you heard of a land of great danger and opportunity.
 Perhaps here is the solution you need.

    It has been said  that there once  was a great magician  who called himself
 Polinneaus. Many years ago, after having many miraculous successes, Polinneaus
 retired  to  the caverns of Larn,  where he  devoted  most of his time  to the
 creation of magic.  Rumors have it  that one day Polinneaus  set out to dispel
 an attacking army in a forest some distance to the north.  It is believed that
 here he met his demise.

    The  caverns of Larn,  it is thought,  must be  magnificent  in design, and
 contain much magic and treasure. One option you have is to undertake a journey
 into these caverns.

    Good Luck!  You're going to need it!

                Help File for 'The Caverns of Larn'

 h,4  move to the left      H  run left                .,5 stay here
 j,2  move down             J  run down                 Y  teleport yourself
 k,8  move up               K  run up                   c  cast a spell
 l,6  move to the right     L  run right                r  read a scroll
 z,7  move northwest        Z  run northwest            q  quaff a potion
 u,9  move northeast        U  run northeast            W  wear armor
 b,3  move southwest        B  run southwest            T  take off armor
 n,1  move southeast        N  run southeast            w  wield a weapon
  move N,W,S,E      run N,W,S,E

  ^   identify a trap       g  give present pack weight P  give tax status
  d   drop an item          i  inventory your pockets   Q  quit the game
  v   print program version S  save the game            D  list all items found
  ?   this help screen     L  redraw screen    e  eat something

                     Options when Starting the Game

 larn.ttp  -r         &   restore game from 'LARN.SAV' (options b,z not saved)
 larn.ttp  -s             list the scoreboard
 larn.ttp  -i             list scores with inventories of dead characters
 larn.ttp  -c             create new scoreboards
 larn.ttp  -h             print out all the command line options
 larn.ttp  -n           * suppress welcome message when beginning a game
 larn.ttp  -    * specify difficulty of the game (may be used with -n)
 larn.ttp  -o   & * use  as 'larnopts'-filename
 larn.ttp  -b         & * disable cursor blinking
 larn.ttp  -z         & * change Z and Y key (for english style keyboards)

 ( The options marked with & or * can be combined when starting a game. )

                          Special Notes

 When  DROPPING GOLD,  if  you type  '*' as your amount,  all your gold  gets
 dropped.  In general, typing in '*' means all of what your interest is. This
 is true when visiting the bank, or when contributing at altars.

 When in the store, trading post, school, or home, an  will get you out.

 When casting a spell, if you need a list of spells you can cast, type 'D' as
 the first letter of your spell.  The available list of spells will be shown,
 after which you may enter the spell code.  This only works on the 1st letter
 of the spell you are casting.

 The Author of Larn is Noah Morgan (1982-3), Copying for Profit is Prohibited.

 Adapted for Atari ST (1988) by Cornelius Caesar.

 Copyright 1986 by Noah Morgan, All Rights Reserved.

                How to use the 'larnopts' option file

 The file "larnopts", if used, should be in your home directory.
 A sequence of words terminated by whitespace is used to specify options.

     Word                             Meaning

  bold-objects                    select bold display of objects
  inverse-objects                 select inverse video display of objects
  no-introduction                 do not display intro message
  no-beep                         disable beeping of the terminal
  male                            choose your sex to be a man
  female                          choose your sex to be a woman
  name: "your name"               choose your playing name
  monster: "monst name"           choose a name for a monster
  savefile: "save-file-name"      define what the savegame filename will be

 Your name and monster names must be enclosed in double quotation marks and may
 be up to 34 characters long. Longer names are truncated.  Anything enclosed in
 quotation marks is considered one word, and must be separated from other words
 by whitespace.

                Explanation of the Larn scoreboard facility

    Larn  supports  TWO  scoreboards,  one  for winners,  and  one for deceased
 characters.  Each player (distinguished by the name from the options file, the
 default is 'ATARI') is allowed one slot on each scoreboard, if the score is in
 the top ten for that scoreboard.This design helps insure that frequent players
 of Larn do not hog the scoreboard,  and gives more players a chance for glory.
 The  level  of  difficulty  is also noted  on the scoreboards,  and this takes
 precedence over the score for determining what entry is on the scoreboard:
    If "Yar, the Bug Slayer" has a score of 128003 on the scoreboard at diff 0,
 then his game at diff 1  and a score of 4112  would replace his previous entry
 on the scoreboard.  Note that when a player dies,  his inventory is  stored in
 the scoreboard so that everyone can see  what items the player had at the time
 of his death.

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