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Hermit's Secret

Norell Data Systems info, Temple Software info 1982

Dian Crayne info
PC info
Treasure hunt
Entered by:
Gunness, Richard Bos, Strident



A hermit lives somewhere around here, at least that's what the local people say. Rumor has it that he's been guarding something -- probably a fortune in gold and jewels -- that will make the finder fabulously wealthy. People also say that a lot of adventurers have vanished in this area, never to be seen again. If you really want to take your chances trying to uncover The Hermit's Secret, I'll help you all I can.

Direct me with one or two words, and remember that I never look at more than the first 6 letters of any word. If you want general hints on play, type INFO, and if you really don't know what to do, type HELP. Good luck in your adventure!


This is one of several adventures written by Dian Crayne. Dian's games were originally published by Norell Data Systems. Her article, on writing adventure games, appeared in PC magazine, Volume 2 Number 4, September 1983, pp.266-276.

The game was released by Norell in 1982.

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Hermits_Secret_1.png hermit_final_screen.png Hermit_s_Secret_Megarat_Memo.png


Average User Rating: 5.5 (2 ratings)

Your Rating: —

User Comments

Richard Bos (16-09-2014 12:12)

A typical product of the time: it can't strictly speaking be called good, but if you turn your mind back to 1982, it can still be enjoyed. Don't expect great story-telling or world-building, though.

Thread Racer (25-07-2016 00:54)

Hi Richard,

Your dungeon maze table has a problem; two columns labeled 'E'! I knew something was wrong! I'm trying to beat the game using the maze tables only, so I haven't looked at any of your other stuff.

By the way, our paths have crossed before. I created Spelunker's Quest for the 2009 interactive fiction competition. I remember playing your game; I seem to recall that I liked it.

Thanks, Tom Murrin

Richard Bos (15-07-2021 19:22)

Heh. For anyone still reading this, the second E column in the second table should indeed be labeled S for South.
Sorry I can't correct it directly, as it is a scan of a hand-written document which I might not even have anymore...

Canalboy (03-12-2021 21:32)

It seems that if you die or screw up there is no way of keeping your saved game. Only if you save, quit and then say "no" to instructions does it load your previously saved game. Of course saving after making an irrevocable error is pointless.

Exemptus (19-02-2022 20:10)

Classic complex treasure quest, but slightly off - there are *lots* of parallels with the original C&W adventure. It's like the same structure had been transplanted into a different scenario. It can be enjoyable to solve, as it is far from trivial, but it makes liberal use of magic words with oblique hints, random connections and annoying mazes, so patience and tolerance for pesky design are a must. A bygone product of a less civilized era.

Canalboy (22-12-2023 19:55)

After a few days' struggle I have found 22 treasures and 201 locations; this is, as has been mentioned previously very old school and one to be abhorred by the microwave generation I suspect. Magic words, mazes and pot-bellied stoves nestle incongruously alongside rocket ships and alien shrines. This is one of those games where you have a "good-sized hole" dug at your feet but the parser doesn't understand "hole" and two locations with buttons where the word "buttons" is similarly eschewed.

Yes I love it.

Canalboy (22-12-2023 21:47)

Well I finally finished this - all in all despite its flaws I enjoyed it. I make no apologies in spoiling one particular puzzle which had me flummoxed for ages, namely digging in the mud hole only works if you are holding the pig. It should be predicated upon whether or not you are holding the shovel but there is a dodgy conditional flag here; likewise when attempting to cross the chasm with the pig. I realised it must be possible to dig here as the parser hints as much when you essay the action sans porker. 401 points and even the original ADVENT magazine last lousy point is included!