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Hunt the Wumpus

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Rating: 4.1/5 (266 votes)
Comments (46) | Views (12,297)

Hunt the WumpusFor the text adventure freaks—that's a term of endearment; I cut my teeth on text adventures in my younger days—this next game is a re-creation of one of the very first computer games: Hunt the Wumpus, by Gregory Yob.

For anyone unfamiliar with the game, there isn't really much to the gameplay so don't expect an enthralling interactive narrative experience the likes that might come from Andrew Plotkin, even though Zarf, himself, was inspired by this early game of yore.

The text-based adventure game is played within a series of 20 rooms connected by tunnels. Each room has tunnels leading to three (3) other rooms thus forming a dodecahedron. There is a Wumpus in one of the rooms, and it will eat you if you enter the room it is in. There are bats in two (2) of the rooms that will pick you up and fly you to a random room if you enter the room they are in. And there is a bottomless pit in two (2) of the rooms that, well, I don't need to explain what happens there, do I?

You have as your arsenal five (5) crooked arrows that you may fire into any tunnel. Save them for when you get close to the Wumpus. Should you miss, the Wumpus gets startled and moves to one adjacent room. If it moves into the room you're in, you will be eaten.

This version of Hunt the Wumpus was created by Rod McFarland in Javascript and is based on Yob's original BASIC source. So it's time to relive this bit of early computer game history and play the classic, Hunt the Wumpus.

Play Hunt the Wumpus


andy makely August 1, 2006 2:23 PM

Other game picks for retro text-lovers:

Homestar Runner's "Dungeonman"

[adult swim] Harvey Birdman's "Habeas Dorkus"


It doesn't always give a warning. Also, do the bats move?


I am having a bit of trouble with this game; how do I examine a room? I have tried typing in "examine" and "examine #" where # = an adjacent room, but I can't seem to ever examine it. Help appreciated!


there is nothing to examine, Imok20. If anything is in an adjacent room, it will tell you without you having to examine.

I feel a draft = pit is nearby
Bats Nearby = self explanatory
I smell a Wumpus = Wumpus nearby.

It will never tell you the exact room these things are in, but that's half the fun.


I just beat the game in three commands :P



Its been 10 years at least since i've seen this game.
Thanks jay.


Got 'em in two! :D


Thanks Tjay, what was confusing me was that when I typed in "commands" it gave "examine" as a command. :(


Aha! You got the Wumpus!

THE WUMPUS IS MINE. Pretty fun game, worth replaying, which is suprising considering how simple it appears. But there is some strategy involved and quite a bit of luck!

Monkeybelly August 1, 2006 3:52 PM

10 years? Try almost 25 years! I remember playing this game on my TI99/4a computer. Along with Munch Man and Parsec, this game was a must have!


hunt the wumpus =
flip a coin,
heads you lose,
tails i win,


Back in the day, we played this on IBM Selectric typewriters.


As did I. One that was attached to an IBM 1130, in fact. =)

Dustfinger August 1, 2006 9:20 PM

Lol I fell into a pit, and then the wumpus got me. LOL!


Wah! I started in a room with a pit, thats not very fair.


Finnally smote the thing. One move, one shot, after starting a new game. I have a hard time with the bats; 3 out of 4 times, they put me in the same room as the Wumpus. They are very mean bats; I'm waiting for one to drop me down a pit. Oh, and it does seem they move. I stood still and shot an arrow one turn, then the bats carried me off the next turn without moving myself.


Christ, the oldest game I can remember had GRAPHICS. Number Munchers on an Apple IIe.

Even then we had Macs on the other side of the classroom with actual GUIs, so apparently I'm a young un'.


Oh, and this just hit me after winning the game 3 times in a row;

That's where the Nethack Wumpus came from.


Hi everyone, I'm the creator of this version of the game. I just wanted to clarify for everyone:

Yes the bats move - every turn. The Wumpus moves about 25% of the time, and always moves if you fire an arrow.

Also note that the Wumpus or a bat can get you even if you don't smell/hear them. That's because you may be two rooms away, but if you move to the same room they move to, they'll get ya!

EvilJoker77 August 2, 2006 6:45 PM

I dont understand how to shoot those darn arrows...excuse my language


You sound frustrated, EvilJoker. All you do is type...

fire room#

Substitute "room#" with the room number you wish to fire towards.


O.K. Heres what happened on my first go...

Enter a command: move 17
Zap -- Super bat snatch! Elsewhereville for you!
Y Y Y Y I I I I E E E E . . . Fell in pit
Game Over. Do you want to play again (y/n)?

That was rather harsh first go :S
Good game in general.


Haha... I love the simplicity. Yiiieeee! You fell in the pit. It almost makes it worth losing. I love these games.


Woo! Killed the Wumpus in one move! :-p

*daces like an idiot, then realizes everyone is staring, stops dancing, and walks away quickly*


Aha! You got the Wumpus! *smiles delightedly


I remember playing this and Hamurabi and some others on a university mainframe at computer camp. There were no monitors, all output was printed on the old green and white paper. Anybody else remember any of the really old games? I can only think of these, but I'm sure there were more.




die wompus die your so ugly i hate you stupid wompus


"move 17"
"YIEEEEEEE You fell in a pit and died."

Juuuuust great.


hay isnt a wumpu one of those aple things in cash bandicoot ?????? lol :S


Just the word 'wumpus' makes me love this game to death.


Does anyone know the game the classroom? where you're supposed to cheat off classmates (everyone is a little circle) well, i can't get passed day 4. help me please!!

stuntman021 August 6, 2007 9:19 PM

Hey Amanda, does this look like The Classroom?

Severe Flame August 25, 2007 6:22 PM

Enter a command: fire 7
Aha! You got the Wumpus!
Game Over. Do you want to play again (y/n)?
Enter a command:


In the old "Hunt the Wumpus" I used to play in college, the wumpus didn't move unless you fired and missed. That meant the game was marginally less random, and therefore slightly better/more enjoyable.

Nevertheless, this brought back memories of scribbling maps of interconnected caves instead of doing homework...

InsertNameHere April 9, 2008 5:23 PM

heh, I found myself being chased by bats: move 18. Bats nearby. Move 16. Bats nearby. Move 6. Bats nearby. Move 3. YIPPIE you fell into a pit :P

Wumpushunter June 22, 2008 3:12 PM

move 17-I feel a draft. Bats nearby. move 2- Y Y Y Y I I I I E E E E-fell in pit. Game Over. Do you want to play again? (y/n)


If you fall into a pit, then how do you get out and hunt the wumpus?
oh I get it you just say "y" and an elevator pushes up from the floor and takes you back to the surface.

Wumpushunter June 23, 2008 11:03 AM


Jay, could you also review Phrozenflame? I know this is Hunt the Wumpus, but I don't know where else to say it...

Believe me, it's a great RPG.


OK, here's a little portion of my most recent game:

Enter a command: Move 8

Zap -- Super bat snatch! Elsewhereville for you!
Zap -- Super bat snatch! Elsewhereville for you!

You are in room 15. I smell a wumpus. Bats nearby. Enter a command: Fire 2.

Missed. You have 4 arrows left. Zap -- Super bat snatch! Elsewhereville for you! Y Y Y Y I I I I E E E E...Fell in pit.

Incredibly fun and hilarious game. Excellent job, Brian Newtz!


This is a good game. Simple and fun. I got the wumpus after falling in the pit twice.

Cheeseable April 5, 2010 7:51 PM

OK, I took FOREVER to get that stupid Wumpus, through pits and bats. It's so hard.

move 15 (bats then got me) you are in room 3. I smell a Wumpus. command: fire 2. Missed. Tsk, tsk, Wumpus got you

WumpusHunter July 22, 2010 8:31 PM

Wow. My first game:
You are in room #a (i forget lol).
Nearby rooms: #b, #c, #d
I smell a Wumpus.
>fire #b
you missed. 4 arrows left.
>fire #c
you missed. 3 arrows left.
>fire #d
aha! you got the wumpus!
play again? y/n
I assume this is not normally that easy.


Tonight we'll eat Wampus meat! Hurray!
in my first game I discovered all the rooms and hunted the wampus
in my second game I discovered 5 rooms, smelled a Wampus, missed, and it ATE me.
in my third game I discovered 9 rooms and I was very lucky, I hunt him.


Link's dead. :(

[Thanks. I've found a version to host here at JIG so the link will never die again. -Jay]


Wow, I hang out on JiG all the time and just stumbled on that you've borrowed my Hunt the Wumpus. I am honored. Also, I was never quite sure my translation from BASIC to JavaScript was totally accurate, I have to admit I never played it back in the day so this was my best guess.


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