Bunyip Adventure

Game Meta:
Release Year:
Format:
Creator:
Ross Williams (Design, Programming)
Company:
Grotnick Software (Publisher), Grotnick Software (Developer)
Platform:

“Bunyip Adventure” is a conventional text adventure that is set in outback Australia. The top half of the screen displays your current static position. The bottom half logs dynamic events. The aim is to catch the Bunyip, a creature for Australian Aboriginal mythology that lives in the still water of a billabong.  The game features a host of other references to Australian flora, fauna and folklore:

“Can you catch the jumbuck by the billabong? What is the significance of the black stump? And what was the swagman doing by the coolibah tree? As night approaches and you boil the billy, you hear the howl of the dingoes as the bunyip approaches.”

What distinguishes this adventure from most others is the lack of trick situations. It takes the player on a very literal journey. You don’t have to burn the paper to read the combinations to the safe. All you have to do is to examine everything in sight and workout its significance and make liberal use of the HELP command. Two features supported by “Bunyip” are the very useful combination of MARK and BACKTRACK. If you are about to try something risky, then give the MARK command first; and if you do get killed, you can type BACKTRACK and be reinstated at the point where you typed MARK. These commands only work within a run of the game.

“Bunyip Adventure” came with a 10 page instruction event.

(Description courtesy of the Microbee Software Preservation Project)

Version information:

“Bunyip Adventure” was labelled as no. 1 of a series, but no subsequent games were released.

From 1988 with the declines of the popularity of the Microbee the game appears to have been available as shareware.  An article in the MBUG’s, “Catcher”, from  June 1988 contained the following information regarding rights for the game.

GROTNIK SOFTWARE
Although the committee of this club has had knowledge of the withdrawal of Grotnik Software from the [Microbee] market, we have not made an announcement because we were unable to confirm the facts. During May, we received a letter from Grotnik Software confirming what we had previously heard. That’s the bad news. Now for the good. Ross Williams, the author/owner/ managing director of Grotnik Software is allowing the three games written for the Microbee to be distributed under the “Shareware” concept. What this means is that the copyright is still retained by Grotnik Software, but the software, instructions etc., may be freely distributed, with the only provision being that profit not be made by the distributor. In other words, it is “free” but for the following condition. To quote from Ross’s letter: “Those who copy and enjoy a program are encouraged to send what they think the program is worth to P.O. Box 372, Glenside 5065, South Australia.”

A decision is yet to be made on the best way to distribute these games, but they will probably appear on Mbug disks (if we can get someone to type up the instructions). The three games are: “Grotnik Wars”, “Bunyip Adventure” and “Flip”. >ANDREW.

(Information courtesy of the Microbee Software Preservation Project)

“Bunyip Adventure” features on the Microbee SoftwaresPreservation Project Adventure Disk 4.  The game is part of both the Microbee Software Preservation Project (MSPP) collection and the Microbee Beeboard. It is listed as “Bunyip – The Australian Adventure”.

MSPP Adventure Disk 4
“Bunyip – The Australian adventure” – Grotnik Adv. Pack v1.1
“Pirate – Pirate Island” – By David Meny, copyright to Menco Inc.
“Survival – Can you survive Mare Serenitatia”
“Elgon – The Treasure of Elgon” – By Keith Horthorn, Microbee version v1.1
“Dogstar – The Dogstar Space Mission”
“Soviet – Escape from the Soviet Science & Detention Base” – Microbee version

Screenshots:




Information Page. Microbee


Screenshot, Microbee

Media Coverage:

Your Computer Magazine, Date Unknown

Media Coverage (PDF):

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Gameplay videos:


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