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Server Quest

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Rating: 4.1/5 (67 votes)
Comments (47) | Views (3,827)
Server Quest

JohnBCreated to promote Microsoft's TechNet service, Server Quest is an adventure game lovingly crafted in the style of early 90s Lucasarts/Sierra titles. From its blocky visuals, kooky musical score and off-beat sense of humor, it's like stepping fifteen years in the past without having to fire up the ole time machine. It's also one of the geekiest games you'll ever play with a number of minigames quizzing you on your knowledge of IT lingo.

serverquest.gifYou play the role of Matt Berg, the office IT guy who meets the new security officer Alicia Thornber. As it turns out, Alicia loves reading tech manuals and playing MMORPGs just as much as Matt, prompting him to ask her out for coffee. This woman's heart can only be won by the geekiest of geeks, however, and the game ensues with you earning Geekpoints to win the girl. Just like in real life!

Even though it resembles an old adventure game, there's very little adventuring to do in Server Quest. You'll only see a few rooms and there aren't any items or proper adventure-style puzzles to solve. Instead, minigames serve to challenge you and move the story along. The first of these is a short quiz about general computer knowledge, but you'll also do a little light hacking to get Alicia's wireless connection to work and participate in two arcade games, Packet Invaders and Office Chaos.

Analysis: The sense of humor is definitely the biggest draw in Server Quest, and true geeks will notice several small easter eggs buried in the game. The voice acting is surprisingly good, and if you dig old synth music you'll have the main theme stuck in your head for hours. And if you're afraid of having Microsoft's TechNet shoved down your throat, don't worry, it's only mentioned once or twice and it blends in smoothly with the rest of the game.

Unfortunately, Server Quest isn't very accessible to most casual gamers due to the tech-laden quizzes, but programmers looking for a break from staring at code will have a blast. It's also a rather short game, but there is a little replay value thanks to the Geekpoints system and the ability to jump to any chapter from the title screen.

It's the geekiest quest you'll ever undertake, all in the name of love... and TechNet.

Play Server Quest


that was fun! I loved the bit where the support lady rang him at the cafe.

I scored about 2000. It was very much like the old sierra games which I loved when I was younger. Could have done without the talking though. :)

ThemePark February 5, 2008 6:27 AM

I'm in love with this game.

I didn't get the girl first time though. Being a geek myself, I'm gonna go for the full points, and maybe write a walkthrough.


Great game, however in the penultimate chapter Alicia always rejects me, just after doing game where you have to deploy peripherals around the office. I've done it up to there a few times and even when doing well at everything up to then it's never good enough for her. Any hints?

ThemePark February 5, 2008 6:45 AM

Tchrin, like she says, you're not enough of a geek. So you need to gather up a whole lot of points, probably all of them, to get the girl.


I didn't get full points but still got the girl. I had just over 3000. Make sure you look at everything and do all the steps even if you know the answer, like asking your boss for the server door code. Also clicking on all the links on your laptop gives you a few extra points.


I have NO IDEA how to

fix Alicia's internet connection. Believe, I've searched the net trying to figure out how to do it, but I guess I'm not geeky enough.

Can someone help, please? I guess this will also be a good learning experience, haha.


ah got it, you need to get 3000 points or more to win.

Right, here's a walkthrough for anyone that's stuck...

Chapter 1 - GML

Click OK quickly on everything that comes up on the screen before the chat finishes

Answer the questions correctly first time to get maximum points. Here are the questions and answers for the one's I've seen -
Q. Laughing Out Loud
Q. Memphis
A. (not 1975)
A. Spam
Q. Local to Remote
A. Upload
Q. First Active Directory Release
A. (Not Win3.11)
Q. Grandfather, Father & Son process
A. Backup
Q. Innovative GUI Application
A. Bob
Q. IBM 8Mhz Computer Bus
Q. Copy
A. Ctrl-C

Chapter 2 - IRP

Talk to Alicia (top right desk), it doesn't matter what you say to her.

Go round the office looking (press space) at everything and everyone. Make a note of door code from the boss.

Go to right hand door and enter code (1138) and go through

Chapter 3 - .BMP

Try to take a machine from the boxes at the bottom to start playing 'Packet Invaders' mini game. The trick here is to only blow up the following ports - 1214, 1443, 4661, 6346 & 6881 (which is all the 4 digit ones). The tan coloured bombs are the easiest way to do this, and you generally get one for most bad ports.

Take remaining machine to Alicia...but you need the password. You can just enter it if you know it but for maximum points, leave Alicia and go back to the machine room.

On your laptop open every file except 'Password Reminder.exe' on the desktop for some bonus points.

Once you've done that (and closed all the offensive pop ups!) open the 'Password Reminder.exe' file and play the mini game to get the reminder. It's fairly easy but the clues that I've seen match up as follows -
Where you sit on Santa - Laptop
What gets stuck in your teeth - Kernel
Half man, half bull - Monitor
What you withdraw from a bank machine - Cache
A type of animal - RAM
This gives you the clue LUKESFATHER

Go back to Alicia's desk and enter the password darthvader

Chapter 4 - FAP

Go up to the laptop nearest the projector and press SHIFT - F8 to make the projector work

Go round the room talking and pressing everything (including the plants) for some bonus points

Go back to your laptop in the machine room and say 'yes' to your MSN from Alicia

Chapter 5 - CAT

In the chat with Alicia give the most positive answer each time which are -
'I'm learning a lot and the people I get to meet are great'
'She's been great with me. It's nice to have someone with experience'
'A Woman of your skill shouldn't have any issues'

To fix her WIFI issue...
-In the IE window go to the URL -
-Login with ID/PW - admin/admin.
-Enter the following IP addresses into the DNS fields - &
-Press OK

Chapter 6 - SNMP

You'll find yourself thrown straight into a minigame, Office Chaos. Unfortunately there's no real trick to this, just deliver the peripherals as quickly as possible, avoiding Chase and picking up powerups when you can.

Chapter 7 - LNK or Chapter 8 - GML

That's it, nothing for you to do here. Assuming you had over 3000 points after completing Chapter 6 then you'll see chapter 8 where you get the girl, otherwise you'll see chapter 7 and you need to start again from the beginning to try again. If you're having trouble with either of the mini games you can play these individually from the game's main menu.


Wow, this game is uber-geeky, to the extent I wouldn't really call it a "casual" game at all.

I like the idea and the atmosphere, but the interface is pretty clunky. Moving left and right seems ok, but when I try to go up and down sometimes Matt get stuck. Also, I accidentally clicked too fast before the "upgrades" minigame and had absolutely no clue what to do and how to do it, which was kinda irritating.

All in all, a fun little distraction although I think plenty of people will either have to use the walkthrough right away or prepare to be thoroughly confused.


I'm getting a "403 Forbidden: You don't have permission to access / on this server" message every time I click on the link. Is this part of the game?


i get the error/forbidden page too.


Did anyone else have trouble getting this game to load? No matter how long I wait, the " bit on the intro screen is never actually clickable. If I go to "chapter select" and manually choose "GML", it appears to start, only to sit at "and his life drones on.." forever.

Kind of ironic, given that I'm trying to play it using Epiphany on Linux..


Yeah, it appears they're having issues with their server today.

Even the contact form on the Microsoft TechNet page returned a "Sorry your request could not be completed" error.


For some extra points you can:

Read the noteboard three times before entering the right door code on chapter 2. You will get a list of numbers. Try them all on the door, then use the right code. Go to the top right corner and press space in front of the big box. There is a little surprise there...


Sorry for the double post, but I forgot to say that

clicking on the things buried on the ground below the actual game area (the skeleton, the can) also gives points.


Directly up my alley. I almost feel bad knowing as much as I do about geeky-tech stuff at age 14...

ThemePark February 5, 2008 4:28 PM

I was finally able to get the good ending with 3205 points. I really love the humor and the whole geeky atmosphere around the game.


I couldn't finish it, the blatant Microsoft advertising was too much.

(i.e, "I'm after your job but I failed the MCE, fortunately a second try is free")

Capt. Bobba February 5, 2008 10:21 PM

Ok this makes me mad it wont play on my PC it says, "sorry but matt is out right now, He will be back soon" and i love the kings quest game and im i not to say that because no one has.

Miff_Otter February 5, 2008 10:53 PM

They (Microsoft)'s server's down.
Makes me want to use Unix (I already do).


So... this is like Leisure Suit Larry, only you woo your intended by trying to understand the underlying nerdiness. I'm not all that knowledgeable of computer specifics and IT jobs, though. It certainly sounds worth a try!


I think it's hilarious.
Microsoft: "Hey, techies! We're great! Play our ad-game and see how great we are!"
Techies: "OK. Um, we can't play."
Microsoft: "Sorry, our server's down. Please try again later."
Techies: "Great, huh? Yeah, I think we see how great you are."

ThemePark February 6, 2008 3:27 AM

NathanielK, there certainly is a certain portion of irony in a game called Server Quest being unavailable because of a server being down.

I guess, maybe that was part of the whole game. To save Microsoft's server. And we failed.

MrSnuffle February 6, 2008 7:48 AM

unfortunately i get a message that matt is away right now, but he will be back later.

come back soon matt!


Hmmm, the site is up again, you can sign up for TechNet service, and participate in a contest, but the game is still gone...
What's going on?

fuzzyface February 6, 2008 3:30 PM

Microsoft: "Hey, techies! We're great! Play our ad-game and see how great we are!"
Techies: "OK. Um, we can't play."
Microsoft: "Sorry, our server's down. Please try again later."
Techies: "Great, huh? Yeah, I think we see how great you are."

Muhahaha :-)


The game hasn't worked in over 24 hrs, it's more like an advertisement for technet.....


servers been down for 2 days now. what the french toast?!!?!?


Now it's getting ridiculous! :(



I looked forward to this game when I read about it on Jayisgames. Right up my alley, I thought -- I know this sort of stuff, and I enjoy the adventure game style. Sure, there'll be some TechNet ads, but I can forgive some of those, since they developed the game.

So much for that.

I played through the game before it went down, and in my opinion, it's a travesty. The entire thing reeks of rote memorization of facts and numbers without any understanding of their meanings or the reasons behind them.

1. The minigame "Packet Invaders"

In this, you are instructed to "be the firewall" and stop bad packets from traversing the network. The only information given to you is the port number each packet is going to/from, and you're expected to know which ports are good (mostly standard HTTP and SMTP ones) and which are bad (ones commonly used by P2P programs). The gameplay is frustrating, as the "bombs" you stop packets with are on a 3-second fuse, and the packets often switch direction mid-stream. Beyond that, though, the concept of a firewall which operates by simply blocking certain ports as bad is inherently flawed. Legitimate traffic often occurs on nonstandard ports, and illegitimate traffic will more or less effortlessly get around the restrictions by operating on known good ports.

2. Troubleshooting the presentation

The projector isn't getting a signal, and you're asked to fix it. You can't check to make sure the cables are plugged in (which is generally the first step in any troubleshooting of this kind). Instead, you're presented with the salesman's laptop, and are apparently expected to know that pressing Shift-F8 will make the laptop start using its external monitor port. If you don't get this for a bit, Alicia prompts you and tells you what to press.

Most laptops (okay, *all* laptops) that I've seen switch displays by using a special "function" key that can be used with the various alternate diagrams on the keyboard. For instance, F5 might have a pictogram of a sun and an up arrow, indicating that Fn-F5 turns the brightness up, while F7 may have a representation of two monitors, indicating that Fn-F7 switches monitor outputs. If my memory serves me correctly, the keyboard on the laptop had no such clues -- you were simply expected to know the magic key combination that would advance the plot.

3. The coffee date This is probably the one that bothered me the most. Once you arrive, Alicia complains that the wireless 'net access in the shop isn't working, and turns her laptop (running a command prompt and an IE session) over to you for inspection. Great, I thought -- *this* I know how to do! I started by attempting to use ipconfig to determine the current network settings. Whoops, that didn't work... apparently the only real commands available are ping and nslookup. At this point, I couldn't even determine what subnet the wireless was operating on.

Once I had bashed at it for a bit, Alicia gave a hint URL that led to a forum post containing some connection information. After consulting the walkthrough, it turned out that what I was supposed to do was use this information to log into the coffee shop's router with IE (using the default admin/admin password, no less) and change their DNS information to match those given in the forum post.

This is bad on several levels. One, it seems that without the "hint", you were just supposed to assume that the connection was on the 192.168.0.x subnet -- more magic numbers. Two, network diagnosis by illicitly logging into a public router and changing the settings without permission is just bad form. Purveyors of public Internet access points are usually doing so on a pro bono basis (or at least to drum up customers), so it's impolite to stomp all over areas you're not invited, even if it is to "fix" their stuff.

The way the game turned out saddened me -- it could have been so much more. The voice acting was good enough to not draw attention to itself (although there were a couple of places that were mysteriously missing any voices). The engine was decent, and the dialogue amusing at times. However, for a game that purports to have geeks as its target audience, it would have helped immensely if it had at least gotten the details right. After all, we're known for noticing that sort of thing...


Anonymous February 7, 2008 8:55 PM

I want to plaaaaaaaaaay!!!I started, and was going to caome back, but the stupid thing just says Matt's not there.


Wow. I started the game when it first appeared here, and got to dink around a little bit. And now that I've finally rebooted my machine and come back, it's not available anymore? Sad times! I want me some pixellated nerd-adventuring.


OMG THREE DAYS NOW AND ITS BEEN DOWN EVERY TIME! jeeeeeez. first it was just a screen saying "matt will be back!" then the next day they added the little discount code offer for purchasing technet, then today its still down but theyve added a video trailer for the game you cant play! awesome! no.


I can't help but wonder if they took the game down because there were some bugs in it, making it impossible to achieve all 4500 points, simply because they weren't all added.

That's my guess, anyway.


So, I was going to have fun playing a Microsoft game on a Mac, now I see that's it been down for 2 days. Enough said :)

Peter Smith February 9, 2008 11:15 AM

This is realy good advertising for TechNet.
It must be as stable as the game itself!

I realy hope it's online soon again.


they should change it to SORRY MATT WILL BE BACK IN 2009. been almost a week and the games still down.


Hi, I had an idea and it worked!
Just google 'Server Quest'
Click on the 'cached' link, and it loads for me.. so in theory should do for everyone :D

have fun!


No, sorry. They're spider programs re-crawled it so the cache is different.


Google might have, but Live search's cache didn't refresh just yet...


This makes me so sad! I discovered this game a couple weeks ago and only had time to play a little bit. I work in IT and wanted to show my boss but now it's broken! Sad sad day.


After looking at the source of the cached page via the Live search mentioned earlier, it seems the game is still accessible at http://sq.fuelyourcontent.com/CDN/Main.swf


Both the link at the top, and the link right above this post don't work. Anyone got a working link? I'd love to play this game!


^^ I second that!

Would love to get a chance to play this game.


It looks like the game's back up at the same URL...although a few details have changed.


found a cheat

when at the door, after typing 1138, click enter twice quickly, and you can keep getting points for the correct code


i got first for all boards using my cheat!

kool_kid1447 May 17, 2009 2:44 PM

i cant seem to get enough points on the pocket invaders game and it tells me to reboot.
does this mean that i have to start the game over b/c i cant figure out how to "reboot"?


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