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FAQ/Walkthrough by DKW

Version: Final | Updated: 06/05/03

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                          THE REVENGE OF MEGABOZ

            Complete Walkthrough written by Darrell Wong (DKW 001)

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Two travellers, an aged adventurer and a young history scholar, arrive at a
familiar clearing.

"Here it is," begins the adventurer.  "The white Colonial house with a mailbox
and boarded front door that you heard so much about.  Plenty of history in this
little bungalow."

"I know," replies the scholar.  "Countless treasure seekers have converged on
this very spot in search of the last known entrance to the Great Underground
Empire.  Once they found it, they would be cast into an incredible adventure
that would test every ounce of their wits and stamina.  Few survived for long
and even fewer learned that their true challenge wasn't a simple treasure hunt.
 Only recently did someone manage to solve all mysteries of the lost empire,
eventually becoming the new Dungeon Master."

"Your knowledge of the caverns is impressive," responds the old hand.  "But the
house itself, do you know its signifigance?"

"Signifigance?" replies the fresh-faced student, puzzled.  "It's a very
nice-looking house, albeit somewhat poorly designed...they could have made it
easier to get in, for example...but I can't imagine it having any major
signifigance.  A good starting point for an adventure and shelter from the
elements, and that's about it."

"At present, yes.  But in days gone by, it far more than that.  In fact...Lord
Dimwit himself used to live here."

The scholar practically chokes on his disbelief.  "Y...you're kidding!  Lord
Dimwit Flathead the Excessive?  His greed and extravagance were astronomical! 
His bloated sense of proportion dwarfed that of the Implementors!  This would
have barely sufficed as a *doll* house for him!"

"Again, in its present state, yes.  Centuries ago, however, this was Lord
Dimwit's castle.  Big as a city, it was, and it housed as much as 90% of his
subjects.  Then, one fateful day..." The adventurer trails off.  "Well, it's a
really long story."

"I'm in no hurry.  Please, go on, this sounds fascinating."

"Very well.  Let's continue this inside."

They go to the house's only passage, the window in the back, and enter with
some difficulty.  ("Hrumph.  You'd think that with so many adventuring hotshots
tramping to this house, *one* of them would have heard of a battering ram,"
grumbles the adventurer.) Emerging in the kitchen, they go to the house's only
other room, the living room, and sit on the rug.  Both comfortably settled, the
adventurer starts his narrative.

"It all began in the year 789.  Lord Dimwit, blithely ignoring the massive
unrest in his kingdom...his usual response to any major crisis...was throwing a
party at his castle.  It was going along pretty smoothly until the wizard
Megaboz showed up out of nowhere, right in front of the king himself.  Said the
king did him wrong by destroying his favorite grove with that big statue of
himself.  Well, before you could spit twice, the wizard destroys the room,
incinerates many of the people in it, and puts a curse on the entire kingdom. 
Of course, then the royal magicians rush in and desperately try to save the
kingdom.  They do manage to put a check on the curse, but it only stops the
worst of it, and the royal family takes the full brunt of Megaboz's vengeance. 
In fact, Lord Dimwit drops dead, almost on the spot." He chuckles to himself. 
"Imagine that.  You could fill ten books with that tyrant's atrocities, and
what finally does him in is cheesing off some irascible spelljammer.  Anyway,
barely a year passes before the rest of the Flathead bunch has kicked it, most
of them under mysterious circumstances.  Now, nobody feels too sorry for those
egotistical, self-serving reprobates, of course, but they'd survived far worse
than anything a wizard could conjure up, and before long everyone realizes that
this curse is serious business.  Even the check the royal magicians put on it
would only last for 94 years... after which the entire Great Underground Empire
would be utterly destroyed."

"Oh my goodness...didn't anyone try to end the curse permanently?"

"Well, a helluva lot of people *tried*, that's for sure.  That's because
Dimwit's successors offered half the treasure of the kingdom to whoever could
beat this thing.  Trouble is, they don't know the first thing about breaking a
curse, and this particular curse was a doozy.  No one even came close.  As the
fateful day drew near, the castle slowly degenerated into anarchy.  The
castle's servants, the guards, even the nobles freely looted the wine cellars
and storerooms, thousands of oppressed citizens made a mad dash for freedom,
and prisoners broke out of confinement and took their grievances out on
everyone they could get their hands on.  Eventually, even the kingdom's
staunchest loyalists resigned themselves to the fact that the GUE was doomed,
and the people fled to distant lands, all 'cept for a few diehard spellcasters
working feverishly for salvation."

He pauses, as if to regain his thoughts.

"Then in 883, with the fall of the empire just days away, a simple, seemingly
unnoteworty peasant made the long journey to the castle.  He arrived just as
the last of the would-be cursebreakers were getting ready to leave..."

=============================================================================

STUFF FOR CJAYC -
Well, I've looked over this lengthy FAQ again over a period of over a year, and
guess what...I got a whole bunch of stuff wrong.  Some of it pretty major.  So
I hope you don't mind indulging me in another "final final version" request
again.  Honestly, I try to avoid these blunders, but they keep cropping up.

The date of completion is June 4, 2003, and my e-mail address, as always, is
wongd012@hawaii.rr.com.


STUFF FOR EVERYONE WHO'S PLAYING THIS GAME -
Yes, I screwed up.  In a number of places.  There are too many corrections to
list here, so you'll just have to go through the walkthrough again.  I hope
you're not incredibly resentful or anything.  :-)


OBLIGATORY BORING DISCLAIMERS -
I wrote this walkthrough as a service to fellow gamers who need help with this
game.  I gave this FAQ to GameFAQs and nowhere else, and everything on their
site is free for the viewing.  So if anyone tries to sell you this walkthrough,
don't pay a cent.  And DEFINITELY never never ever try to claim it as your own
and sell it.  That's plagiarism, you can get into serious trouble for it, and
the risk of that is definitely not worth whatever laughably small pittance you
could get for my works.

Zork Zero and everything related to it is copyrighted by Infocom.  All rights
reserved.  You know the drill.


WHERE TO GET THIS GAME -
This game is no longer commercially produced.  You can download it from
www.theunderdogs.com.  The instructions, which you absolutely *must* have, can
be found on the same site.  The first page of the instructions mentions a
"masterpieces of Infocom" CD, but I don't know anything about it.


INTRODUCTION -
Zork Zero, the fourth game in the acclaimed text adventure series, was one of
many phenomena that I'd read about but never actually experienced.  All that
changed once the game became available for download, along with the original
Zork trilogy.  (Of course, the widespread switch to hard drives also played a
big part; you have no idea how tiresome it was having to constantly switch to a
"save disk" in the old days.)

I didn't quite know what I was getting when I started this game, but it became
quickly apparent that it wasn't like the rest.  For one thing, it was much,
much bigger.  For another, it relied less on traditional text adventure
elements (trial and error, knowing where and when to use items, interpreting
obscure hints, blind luck, etc.) and emphasized logic and creativity in its
solution path.  There are also a fair amount of graphics, which fortunately
enhance the game without distracting from it.

I normally *despise* prequels (Why go *backwards*, for crying out loud?  What's
wrong with forward?  What?), but Zork Zero is a fine game in its own right, and
I spent many enjoyable hours just getting around and working ever closer toward
the ultimate goal.  Of course, it's far from easy, and in fact much easier to
screw up here than in any of the previous games.  That's what this walkthrough
is for.


OBJECTIVE -
In Zork Zero, which takes place before the events of the Zork Trilogy, you are
the peasant who's destined to save the Great Underground Empire from
destruction.  The last desperate spellcasters have long since left, so you have
a free run of the castle.  Your constant companion is an enigmatic court
jester, who, like the thief and wizard of the previous games, will frequently
pop up at random.  Both ally and enemy, he'll give you items that you'll need
and help you get around (if you can answer his riddles), but also do certain
things that might hinder your progress.

Your mission is to collect the 24 lost possessions of the Flatheads, put them
in the castle cauldron, then speak the "sacred word" (which you are unaware of
at present).  Here are the Flatheads and their individual items:

Dimwit: crown, scepter                 John D: diploma, stock certificate
Stonewall: lance, saddle               Johann: violin, metronome
J. Pierpont: zorkmid bill, tie         Thomas: lantern, screwdriver
Leonardo: landscape, easel             Lucrezia: flask, fan
Ralph: quill pen, manuscript           John P: seaman's cap, spyglass
Frank: t-square, scale model           Babe: dumbbell, club

These items have been scattered all over the kingdom, and some of them are very
well hidden, so be prepared for a long haul.

You earn points for recovering items and putting them in the cauldron, finding
other vital items, solving the jester's riddles, and completing various other
tasks.  You always get 12 points when you obtain a Flathead item, so you know
for sure when you have one.  Your rank goes up as you earn points, from a
simple Peasant, to the higher levels of the royal hierarchy, and then the
Adventurer ranks.  The highest possible score is 1000, and the rank which goes
with it is something you'll discover at the end...


GENERAL HINTS -
The quest to stop the curse will be a long, long haul.  It's no exaggeration
when I say this game is bigger than the last three put together.  Even if you
know what you're doing, it will take well over 1300 moves to reach the end.  So
take your time, be patient, and don't try to do too much.  Cramming too much of
this game into one session is an almost surefire way to make a mistake...and
then you have to waste even *more* time backtracking or fixing it.  (Believe
me, it will happen.  It's happened to me too many times.) I know how great the
temptation can be to do "just a little more", but make sure that you do
occasionally check out.

Save your game *extremely often*!  I just can't say this enough.  Save after
you make *any* kind of progress, no matter how seemingly trivial.  The jester,
like the wizard in Zork II, can really mess you up at any time, even right
after solving a tough puzzle.  And there are plenty of tough or just plain long
puzzles.  And there are TOO many ways to kill your game.  Remember, saving is
security!

At the same time, it's also wise to have multiple save games, so you're never
in the situation where you're stuck in a particular area because you saved at
the wrong time (will happen, happened to me at least fifty million times...). 
In particular, it's extremely advisable to use a different save game whenever
you go to one of the Oracle locations (see below).

There are tons of items, and all but a few are vital to your quest, so you have
to be judicious in deciding what to carry and what to drop.  It's all too easy
to get weighed down, and you will very often get an item that you won't use
until much later.  Because of this, it's vital that you set aside at least one
room as a "drop point", where you put everything you don't need right away. 
That way you don't have to run all over the place every time you need
something.  It's also a good idea to deposit the Flathead items in the Banquest
Hall ASAP (with two exceptions, both covered in the walkthrough).  And of
course, always drop items that are no longer needed.

You *absolutely must* have the instructions.  Repeat: You *absolutely must*
have the instructions.  The game was designed specifically for a player *with
the instructions in hand*, as the solutions to many of the game's problems are
revealed there.  (This is actually an early form of copy protection, since you
need the instructions to get anywhere.) Both the document and Acrobat Reader
are freely downloadable, so there's no excuse for not having them.  I will
refer to the instructions every time one of these problems comes up, so be sure
to have them handy!

There are a number of things, such as the Jester's name, which are random and
change from game to game.  Have a separate sheet of paper so you can write them
down.  If you're new to this game, it's also a good idea to make a checklist of
the Flathead items and tick them off as you obtain them.  It's incredibly
frustrating to get to the end only to find out you're missing ONE item, and you
don't know what it is.  I should know...it's happened to me at least three
times.

*Never, ever* dump anything in the cauldron that's not a Flathead item!  You'll
know if you've done this if your score goes down by 5 points.  If you do, you
must restore, because the sacred word will never work.  In fact, anything that
lowers your score makes the game impossible to win...yes, this time you *must*
have the maximum possible score.  For the record, I found this out the hard
way. (I make the big blunders so you don't have to! :-D)

Anything else...oh yeah, don't blindly stumble around in the dark, don't eat or
drink anything that you do not absolutely have to eat or drink, and don't give
the wrong response to any question.


WALKTHROUGH NOTES -
Because Zork Zero is so big, I've divided the walkthrough into five parts.  The
Flathead items in each section are listed at the beginning.

I use abbreviations for all directions, including up (U) and down (D).  The
parser is a little friendlier than it was in the Zork Trilogy, but it's still
necessary to enter some commands exactly.  I use exact commands and
plain-language directions interchangably throughout the walkthrough.  When you
have to enter a command involving one of the random events, I'll put that part
in brackets, e.g. SAY [name].  Some actions are routine (wearing items,
dropping items, putting an item in another, etc.); I won't spell out the exact
commands.  The only thing you really need to remember is that you cannot drop
anything that you are wearing.  Note that to affect multiple items, you must
intersperse each of them with the word AND, e.g. GET CUP AND ORB AND LANTERN;
commas don't work.  Thanks to the graphics, it's easy to determine where you
are at all times, so I won't bother with location notes this time.

I use two drop points for the walkthrough, the Great Hall, for items you'll
need later, and the Entrance Hall, for the three items which reveal
information.  When I instruct you to drop an item in the Banquet Hall, do just
that, drop it, don't put it in the cauldron.  It's very easy to miss an item,
and you won't know which one it is unless all the others are present and
visible.

The jester will periodically appear at random, spin a rhyme, then (usually) do
something to you.  He'll also does this after you solve one of his riddles. 
For the most part, the effects aren't too harmful, but you need to know what to
do in each situation:

Just looks at you without saying anything - Nothing happens.
"Oh well, they can't all be gems." - Nothing happens.
"So long and thanks for all the fish!" - This is the title of the third book of
the Hitchhiker Trilogy, written by Scott Adams (who also helped develop the
Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy game for Infocom).  Other a little puzzlement
at the unexpected reference, nothing happens.
"Catch you around, clown!" - A red clown nose appears on your face (you'll
notice it if you check your inventory).  You have to remove it or you'll die of
suffocation.  It has no use, so just drop it once it's removed.
"Think I'll catch some winks.  Nighty night!  Don't let the bedbugs bite!" - A
massive insect appears and prevents you from leaving the area.  YAWN, LIE DOWN,
or SING LULLABY to make it go away.
"See you later, alligator!" - You turn into...surprise!...an alligator,
dropping everything you're holding.  Wait a little while for the spell to wear
off (it lasts anywhere from one to three turns) and pick everything up again. 
If you were wearing something, remember to put it back on!
"Tune in next time, same bat-time, same bat-channel!" - This is the nasty one. 
A bat swoops out of nowhere and deposits you in a random location.  Often it'll
be a place you can't get back from, which means you have no choice but to
restore.  Fortunately, this only happens rarely, but it's enough of a threat
that you should save often.
"See you in the funny papers!" - He'll only say this once, invariably in the
early going.  When he does, stay right where you are and wait; a funny paper
will blow into view.  It has a solution to one of the problems, so you'd better
not miss it.

Additionally, and also in the early going, the jester will give you a slate and
a scroll, both of which also provide solutions.  Note that the scroll is always
the same, but the paper and slate are random.  Drop them all off at the
Entrance Hall when you get the chance.

I very strongly recommend that you follow my walkthrough exactly, at least
until you get very familiar with the game.  There's a definite order in which
you have to solve many of the puzzles, and getting lost or stuck is no fun.

Okay, that should cover it.  Now let's get cursebustin'!

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

                         *** COMPLETE WALKTHROUGH ***

PART 1 - CASTLE PROPER
Flathead items: scepter, metronome, manuscript, lance, violin, T-square,
dumbbell, zorkmid bill, seaman's cap (9 total).

The game begins with a description the events leading up to Lord Dimwit's final
moments...which you have to play out.  That's right, you're not going to read
the prologue, you're going to *play* it!  And yes, it *is* possible to get
killed here and end your game before it's even rightfully begun. 
Sheesh...anyway, from the beginning.  NE.  S.  W.  E.  W.  Z (or LOOK AT MAN,
anything that uses a move).  DIVE UNDER TABLE.  STAND and GET PARCHMENT, or
just wait.  All right, you made it to the *actual* start of the game!  As the
game, ahem, begins, you...meaning the you in the game proper, not the ancestor
in that *completely pointless reenactment* (okay, okay, I won't make a big deal
out of this anymore)...awaken in the Great Hall, with nothing but a calendar,
and the parchment if you took it in the prologue.  All right, time to get a
move on.  GET ALL.  U.  S.  Look at the rebus if you like, although you won't
be able to actually see it until you remove the icons.  S.  PUSH BUTTON.  OPEN
BAG.  GET FOOD.  The bag has a warning, which you can read if you like.  DROP
CALENDAR.  Drop the parchment, too, if you have it.  They're both in the
instructions, so you don't need them in your possession.  N.  L AT REBUS.  If
you looked at it before, you'll notice that the mouse icon has been removed; it
happened when you pushed the key-shaped button.  N.  D.  DROP FOOD.  S.  S. 
(Sheesh, *two* thrones.  "Excessive" didn't do that guy justice.) GET SCEPTER. 
Now turn to "Suspendur" in the instructions and read the Fun Fax to find out
how to access the secret wing.  Once you do, S.  GET CANDLE.  This candle has
an enchantment on it and will last indefinitely (provided you don't do anything
stupid like blow it out).  You'll need it for most of the game.  There are a
couple of lit torches in the room two moves W from the Entrance Hall, but they
burn out incredibly quickly, so don't bother with them.  S.  W.  U or SW.  U. 
GET KEY.  All of a sudden the jester appears out of nowhere and, after a short
introduction, snatches the key away!  Don't worry, he'll give it to you if you
can solve a simple riddle.  And it is simple; SAY LETTER Y.  Note that you
don't have to put spoken words in quotation marks like you did in previous
Zorks.  With the key in hand, W and S.  GET ALL.  WEAR GLOVE.  *Don't* put on
the cloak just yet.  N.  E.  D or NE.  E.  E.  D.  S.  SW.  Open the torture
devices in any order and pick up the metronome when it drops from the ceiling. 
And, no matter how tempted you are, *don't sit in the comfy chair*!  You'd be
shocked as to how easy it is to die sometimes.  NE.  D.  GET CAP.  Z.  You
don't have a way out, but the jester does.  Another pretty easy riddle; SAY
TRIPLET (other answers are possible).  Go N, U, and W back to the Tee, return N
all the way to the Great Hall, and drop the cloak and cap.  Then go E and N (or
vice versa) to the Banquet Hall and drop the metronome and scepter.  The cap is
also a Flathead item, but hang on to it; you'll need it later.  S.  SE.  UNLOCK
DOOR WITH KEY.  OPEN DOOR.  DROP KEY.  E.  E.  READ WAND.  You don't have to
take an item before reading it; this happens automatically.  "Minutes" actually
means moves, very important to know when it comes time to use this.  E.  U. 
OPEN N DOOR.  N.  N.  WEAR GOGGLES (as with "read", you automatically pick up
the item before putting it on).  S.  S.  Save, then OPEN S DOOR.  Ah, here's a
classic puzzle you might be familiar with, the Towers of Hanoi, or "Bozbar" in
Flatheadia.  The object is to move the entire tower to either the left or right
peg.  The only restriction...which the game doesn't tell you, by the way...is
that you can never stack a heavier weight atop a lighter weight.  (Well, you
can, but that crushes the lighter weight, which prevents you from ever
completing the tower, and you don't want that.) Moving the tower to either peg
will open a different room to the north of the Jester's Quarters, and you have
to get to both.  I'll explain the solution as best as I can.  First you have to
move the 1 weight, then get a 1 stacked atop a 2 on the other side, then a
1-2-3 on the opposite end, etc.  Then, once you've moved the bottom weight, you
have to put the other layers on top, one by one, in the correct order.  Now, if
the weight on the bottom of the stack you need to move is odd, start by moving
the 1-weight to the peg that you want that stack moved to.  If it's even, move
the 1-weight to the *other* peg.  It's not as hard as it sounds, really.  Once
you've moved the tower to either the left or right peg, OPEN N DOOR and proceed
to the opened room.  There's a cup in the west room and a manuscript in the
east one; get both.  Once you're done, return to the east wing and go N to the
library.  TOUCH ARMOR three times to reveal the lance (this is what the scroll
hint refers to), get it, then take a look at the encyclopedia.  There's all
kinds of information here, but the only thing you really need to look up is the
jester.  READ ABOUT JESTER.  Hmm, mighty suspicious...oh, and be sure to copy
down the jester's middle name; you *will* need to know this later.  (Go look up
other things if you want.) Go S, W, NW, and N to the Banquet Hall and drop off
the manuscript and lance.  Drop the wand and cup in the Great Hall and go N to
the Entrance Hall.  (Remember to drop the comic, slate, and/or scroll here if
you have them.) PUSH DOORBELL.  Riddle #3, a little tougher than the last two. 
SAY TIME.  The gate opens.  N.  GET WORM.  NW.  NW.  U.  TURN WHEEL.  The
cannonball is useless, so leave it.  D.  NW.  NW.  SW.  OPEN LOCKER.  GET KEY. 
The poster is useless.  NE.  NE.  SE.  E.  N.  Riddle #4; this one's *too*
easy.  SAY BOOKKEEPER.  Sheesh, he literally gave you the answer!  GET COIN. 
S.  E.  S.  OPEN PACKAGE.  GET PERCH.  GET PIGEON and repeat until you actually
succeed in doing this.  The pigeon is a magical item; every time you pick it
up, you'll be instantly transported to wherever the perch is.  Sometimes,
however, it'll flutter out of reach before you can pick it up, so you have to
try again.  Note that if you try to pick up the pigeon at the same time as
something else, it'll *always* slip out of your grasp, which is why you have to
take the perch separately.  With both in hand, go N, E, and D.  PUSH BUTTON. 
That would be the goose in the rebus you just eliminated.  S.  GET ON to board
the conductor's stand.  GET OFF.  GET VIOLIN.  GET ON.  GET OFF.  The areas to
the E and S of the Philharmonic are of no importance.  N.  U.  E.  N.  GET
RING.  Bad things happen when you put on the ring, so don't.  S.  W.  Now you
have another task which requires the instructions.  There's a Flathead item in
the tower, and I'm pretty sure you don't want to search through all the rooms
for it (there are *1600* of them, by the way!!) Turn to the profile of Frank
Lloyd Flathead to find out where his office was, go there, get the t-square,
and return all the way to the bottom.  Okay, you're done here, so return to the
Entrance Hall.  (The Courtroom N of the Village Center is of no importance; the
Church S of the Shady Park has some information but nothing else.) From the
lobby, W three times.  NW.  SW.  SE four times.  S.  Go E to the Banquet Hall,
drop the T-square, and go S and D.  GET WALNUT.  Return to the Great Hall, drop
everything but the steel key and walnut (leave the goggles and glove on,
however), and pick up the wand.  From there go W and SW.  Leave the flamingo
for now, and whatever you do, don't try to pick it up.  UNLOCK DOOR WITH KEY. 
OPEN DOOR.  DROP KEY.  NE.  N.  GET LOBSTER.  You must be wearing the glove to
do this.  POINT WAND AT LOBSTER.  Remember, 16 moves!  S.  SW.  W.  W.  Riddle
#5 is the hardest one, mainly because you need the "borrowed" nutcracker to
solve it.  OPEN WALNUT WITH NUTCRACKER.  SHOW WALNUT.  EAT WALNUT.  Done. 
Leave the W passage for now and go S.  DROP ALL.  GET DUMBBELL.  The dumbbell
is too heavy for you to carry anything else, although worn items are okay. 
Unburden yourself at the Banquet Hall, return to the Gym, and pick up the wand.
 Go N twice and READ INSTRUCTIONS, then begin the game.  This game is known as
"Peg Leap" outside of the GUE.  As anyone who's ever played it knows, it's
*hellishly* difficult.  Here's the solution, which you can also find in the
game's hint file: QG SQ HR UL IK TI EJ OG AE FN MO LJ PF FC BD DK QG EJ OG.  If
you're an absolute masochist, go ahead and try to find another solution.  But
only if you're an absolute masochist.  At any rate, the doorway to the N is
open; enter it.  Here the jester presents you with yet another classic, the ol'
shell game.  Thanks to your goggles, you immediately learn what countless
suckers who got taken by this swindle never did, i.e. the object isn't under
any of the shells.  POINT TO [location of bill].  Gotcha.  Remove and drop the
goggles since you don't need them anymore, drop the wand in the Great Hall
again, and store the zorkmid bill in the Banquet Hall with the rest of the
Flathead treasures.

So far, so good.  You're done with the castle grounds...now it's time to do a
little travelling.


PART 2 - UNDERGROUND AND SURROUNDING AREAS
Flathead items: stock certificate, lantern, screwdriver, flask, crown, diploma,
saddle, fan (17 total)

Take the candle, perch, cloak, zorkmid coin, and pigeon from the Great Hall
(remember to take the pigeon separately!).  D.  D.  N.  GET PASSAGES and read
the notice that falls out.  S.  S.  Of course, you don't know a thing about
safecracking...that's why you have that glove.  TURN DIAL TO [any number]. 
OPEN VAULT.  S.  Get the certificate and discard the glove; you won't need it
again.  N.  U.  SW (Great Underground Highway).  S.  W.  W.  Refer to the
blueprint in your instructions.  Your target is room 17, and you have to use
the Northwest-Southeast passage and North-South passage, in that order, to get
there.  (Note that there are two possible locations for each.) Leave the hammer
in room 61; it's useless.  Okay, you're in room 17, and you might notice that
you're a "knight move" away from room 0, where the hardhat is.  And now you'll
use an actual knight move to get it.  Follow the following instructiosn
carefully, because it gets a little tricky here.  DROP PERCH.  WEAR CLOAK. 
You're transported to a field which, as it turns out, is actually a giant
chessboard.  NW.  W.  W.  Here's a good knight!  (The game calls him a "soldier
on a black horse" or something, but it's pretty obvious, don't you think?) He
may or may not greet you; either way, he's at your command.  GIVE PIGEON TO
SOLDIER; he's transported to where you left the perch.  REMOVE CLOAK.  GET
PIGEON.  Leave the perch in his hands.  Don't drop the pigeon while the
soldier's around or he'll snap it up.  SOLDIER, GO N THEN NW.  Once he's made
the jump, DROP PIGEON and GET PIGEON (repeating if it escapes your grasp). 
You'll be transported to the perch location, which, since the black knight is
holding it, is room 0.  Looks like he already found the hardhat.  GET HARDHAT. 
SOLDIER, GO S THEN SE.  DROP PIGEON and GET PIGEON again to return to room 17. 
Retrieval successful!  Note: In the future, whenever I tell you to "pigeon
transfer", it means drop the pigeon and pick it up again to go to the location
of the perch.  Take the perch back from the knight, drop the cloak since you
don't need it anymore, and leave the construction site.  From the Exit, go S to
the crossroads and E to the Cave-in.  Nothing of note here...except, of course,
the jester with riddle #6.  You did write down that name, right?  SAY [jester's
middle name].  GET BOMB.  Now take the south path from the crossroads and PUT
COIN IN BASKET.  Continue down the path to the orb room and GET ALL.  Return to
the Crossroads and go N, N, and NE to the Lower Hall, then D twice to the
Bottomless Pit area.  THROW BOMB.  What the...*there are hordes of grues still
alive*??  The horror!!  The horror!!  Why, if you didn't have a candle that
never burns out, you'd be devoured in seconds! :-P  (Sorry, but seeing the grue
threat, which pales incredibly next to all the other things that can kill you,
constantly blown totally out of proportion just irks me.) GET LANTERN.  U.  U. 
N.  GET SCREWDRIVER.  Your hands are full now; time for another dropoff.  (If
the jester gives you any of the three special items during your trip through
the underground, you'll need drop it off before you can take the screwdriver. 
This is no big deal.) Unload the screwdriver and stock certificate in the
Banquet Hall (the lantern is another Flathead item which you'll need later),
drop everything else but the candle in the Great Hall, and pick up the cup.  Go
all the way back to the Crossroads and go W, W, SW, W, and W to the Fishing
Village.  Enter the building to the N.  Uh oh, there's an Inquisition going on
here...and the guards won't let you out!  (Oh, and they won't let you take the
pigeon in either, in case you were thinking of trying that.) Well, may as well
get what you came here for.  GET TICKET.  OPEN BOX.  GET REPELLENT.  Read the
sign too while you're here.  When your turn comes up, EXECUTIONER, BEHEAD ME. 
Ah, the old Executioner's Paradox, and just like in those logic problems, it
wins you your freedom.  Back outside, DROP TICKET, W, and N.  Save, then SIT to
accept the jester's challenge.  You'll be presented with four bizarre cards and
an array of even more bizarre plays.  Go ahead and make any plays you like. 
The jester will comment on them and chastise you whenever you make an illegal
play.  Two things should soon become screamingly obvious: 1. The "game" is
completely hokum; the jester's just making everything up as he goes along, and
his commentary (which includes what has to be the most flagrant overuse of the
word "gambit" in a computer game ever) doesn't mean a thing, and 2. There's no
way in hell you're going to outscore the jester, assuming that it's even
possible to win that way.  Never fear; it is possible to win, and it's
mentioned in the Babe Flathead profile in the instructions.  Draw a card every
time you play one (or just select draw repeatedly, which amounts to the same
thing) and wait for the jester to make the fatal discard.  It may take a while,
so be patient.  Once he does, fire off your...ahem..."indefensible gambit". 
You have to make the plays in succession, so if the jester prevents a play
because it's "illegal", resign, restore your game, and try again.  Once you
complete the...snort, snicker, guffaw... indefensible gambit, the jester
accepts his "defeat" and presents a broom as your prize.  Take it, STAND, then
go S, E, S, S, and SE.  READ SIGN.  Whaddya know, yet another classic logical
puzzle, Knights and Knaves.  *Save your game* before going NE, then read each
of the doors (you can't read them all at once).  I'll make this easy for you:
The first statement is always "This door does not lead to Prevaricon
territory." Because the Wishyfoos alternate true and false statements, that
means that the second message on their door must be false.  Therefore, the
Veritassi's door is the only one where the second statement is true.  Assume
that the first door's second statement is true, then determine whether the
other two second statements are true or false based on that assumption.  Repeat
with the other doors.  Use pen and paper if you have to, which you probably
will.  Exactly one of the second statements, when true, should cause the other
two second statements to be false.  From there, it's easy to determine which
door leads to Wishyfoo territory.  If you're wrong, restore (you can't save or
undo in this room, unfortunately) and try again.  The puzzle changes every time
you come here, so try to get it right the first time!  Once you successfully
make it to Wishyfoo territory, pick up the shovel they left for you, then go D;
you're back at the fork.  You're done with this area, so go NE, E, and E to the
Crossroads and back to the Lower Hall from there.  Go D until you reach the
Mouth of Cave, NE, NE or D, and D to Under the World.  Continue following the
path to the Brogmoid's ear.  DRINK POTION.  LISTEN TO FUNGUS.  Long-lost
cousin, eh?  Better write down that name, of course.  Oh, and this may sound
obvious, but *never drop anything while you're under the world!!*  Return all
the way back to the Lower Hall, go S, get the toboggan, return to the Great
Hall, and drop the cup and toboggan.  Go S to the Tee, E, D, S, and SE.  SWEEP
COBWEBS.  DROP BROOM.  GET FLASK.  The liquid in the flask was one of the tools
of the notorious Lucrezia Flathead, so don't ever open it!  Retrace your steps
to the Entrance Hall, take the slate, and go NW all the way to the Outer
Bailey.  READ SLATE.  The elm referred to on the slate is the stump (it was cut
down after the message was written).  STAND ON STUMP, jump exactly as the slate
says, and DIG GROUND WITH SHOVEL.  Whaddya know, it was actually directions to
treasure!  DROP SLATE AND SHOVEL.  OPEN CHEST.  GET CROWN.  Deposit the crown
and flask.  Back at the Great Hall, put on the seaman's cap, take the pigeon
and perch, and make sure you also have the squid repellent and candle.  D.  SE.
 E.  ENTER DOCK.  ENTER.  L AT CONTROLS.  You'll only need to use three of the
buttons.  You must be wearing the cap to control the yacht, by the way.  Okay,
your first order of business is to get something from the bottom of the lake
via the yacht's bathysphere.  PUSH WHITE BUTTON.  D.  DROP REPELLENT.  OPEN
DOOR.  ENTER.  Look at the controls if you want, although it's not necessary. 
CLOSE DOOR.  PUT HAND IN WALDO.  GET REPELLENT.  TURN ON LIGHT.  MOVE LEVER D. 
Z four times.  DROP REPELLENT.  GET RUBY.  MOVE LEVER U.  Z four times.  DROP
RUBY.  REMOVE HAND.  OPEN DOOR.  EXIT.  GET RUBY.  The upshot of all these
moves, of course, is that you've retrieved the ruby without a squid coming
along and messing you up, which happens if you don't leave the repellent.  U. 
PUSH GREEN BUTTON.  EXIT.  EXIT.  The first time to leave the yacht, the second
time to get off the dock.  W.  W.  And on to the 7th and final riddle.  The
answer is easy if you recognize the double entendres.  SAY MUSIC and get the
diploma.  E.  S.  E.  NE.  N.  E.  WEAR AMULET.  Don't ever remove this.  PUSH
BOULDER.  Whoa...good thing you parked at the green dock instead of there, huh?
 N.  PUSH BUTTON.  Three down, three to go!  NE.  Drop the diploma, ruby, and
perch.  Hmm, liquid in a narrow bottle, out of reach.  Does this remind you of
anything... say, a certain story with a lesson at the end?  SW.  W or D.  You
tumble all the way down to the Lowest Hall, dislodging some gravel.  GET GRAVEL
AND CANDLE.  GET PIGEON.  Back at the Shrine, PUT GRAVEL IN BOWL.  Go down the
gravel path again to shake loose some more gravel, and GET MORE GRAVEL AND
CANDLE.  (Be sure to enter "more gravel" and not "gravel".) Get the pigeon and
put the gravel in the bowl.  Do this one more time and put the "even more
gravel" in.  The elixir is now within reach, so TOUCH ELIXIR.  Don't be alarmed
by your weird newfound desires; all this means is that you've gained the power
to catch flies.  GET ALL.  SW.  S.  W.  N.  GET ALL.  S.  S.  GET FOX.  SW. 
GET FLY.  W.  N.  ENTER DOCK.  ENTER.  PUSH YELLOW BUTTON.  Remove and drop the
cap and EXIT twice.  By now it should be pretty obvious that the fox wants to
eat the rooster.  It won't actually do so, however, as long as you keep it in
sight.  Go W, NW, and U to return to the Great Hall, then drop off the diploma
and saddle in the Banquet Hall.  Back in the Great Hall, DROP ALL EXCEPT
ROOSTER AND FOX and get the worm.  Hmm, looks like the rooster itself is a
little hungry.  Go W, SW, and W to the West Wing, then W again.  ENTER.  PUSH
RIGHT BUTTON.  Enjoy the ride and wait until you arrive at Fenshire.  (Zork
veterans will notice some familiar landmarks.) EXIT.  S.  E.  N.  Wow, that
jester's certainly a man of many callings.  Z.  He sees that you have the
proper "ingredients", then suggests moving to a better spot...upon which the
archway behind you collapses.  Guess what, you've literally walked right into a
classic puzzle.  You have to get all three animals across the quicksand, but
because the stepping stones are unsteady, you can only carry one at a time. 
Furthermore, you must *never* leave the rooster with the worm or fox (the
rooster will eat the worm and the fox will eat the rooster), but it's okay to
leave the fox with the worm.  With that in mind, the solution should be pretty
obvious.  If you need help, the first thing you have to do is drop the fox and
worm.  Then take the rooster across and drop it.  I'm confident that you can
figure out the rest from there.  Anyway, once you get them all across, the
jester makes the stew, but before you can even sample it, you pass out...and
awaken back at the hangar!  And it appears that the jester left you another
prize.  GET BLOCK.  Go S and E to the Ruined Hall again.  And now the archway
is as good as new!  Strange.  You don't need to go there again, though, so go
S.  The jester is here and ready for a game of Snarfem (a.k.a. Nim).  This can
be a real challenge...unless you know how to beat it, in which case it's
laughably easy.  Here's how: At the start of your turn, look at the flowers on
the upper left and upper right of the screen.  The flowers at the left indicate
the number of the pile you should pick, and the flowers on the right indicate
how many stones you should remove.  Do this every time and you're guaranteed to
win.  Collect your prize, a fan, return to the dirigible, and push the left
button to return to Flatheadia.  Add the fan to your Flathead item collection.

That does it for the surrounding areas.  You've made a lot of progress, but
there's still a long way to go.  For the next part of your journey, you're
going to use a little magical help.


PART 3 - THE HIGHLANDS
Flathead items: scale model, easel, landscape (20 total)

Take the candle, pigeon, perch, ruby, toboggan, and all the orbs, hold onto the
hexagonal block, and read the funny paper if you haven't already done so.  From
the Great Hall: E.  SE.  E.  S.  OPEN DOOR.  D.  LOOK UNDER [slab mentioned in
funny paper].  D.  Here's the Oracle, your ticket to the outside world.  DROP
PERCH, then PUT RUBY IN DEPRESSION to activate it.  Now, the amulet you're
wearing indicates where the Oracle will send you to.  There are a total of five
areas, indicated by the number of eyes on the amulet that are open (from none
to four).  Every two moves, the Oracle will blink and open another eye; once
they're all open, the next blink closes them all.  L AT AMULET and wait until
one eye is open, then ENTER ORACLE.  You should be at the Glacier; restore if
you're not.  At the Glacier, DROP TOBOGGAN and RIDE TOBOGGAN.  You end up in
the middle of a highly reflective frozen lake.  LOOK AT REFLECTION OF FIERY
ORB.  Repeat with the other orbs until see an image of a sleeping maiden. 
Throw that orb W; this will get you to the east bank.  STAND.  DROP ORBS (you
only need the one you just threw).  NW and SW in either order.  GET ORB.  W. 
GET MODEL.  You're all done here, so pigeon transfer back to the Oracle room. 
(You can touch the amulet to exit any of the outlying areas, but you'll end up
in a completely random location in Flatheadia; it's better to use the pigeon.) 
Return topside, drop off the scale model in the Banquet Hall, and get the wand
from the Great Hall.  Go D and SE to the Royal Zoo and drop the pigeon.  Now
*save*, because you're about to perform a very tricky sequence.  You have to
POINT WAND AT SNAKE (this turns it into a rope), OPEN CAGE, GET ROPE, and GET
PIGEON, *in that exact order*, then enter the oracle with no eyes open; this
takes you to the Crag.  Then D, TIE ROPE TO SPIRE, and D.  Needless to say,
with only 16 moves before the snake reverts back and bites you (fatally), you
can't dally in the Oracle room too long.  It's even worse if the pigeon flaps
away.  Your best bet is to start making your moves the moment the amulet shows
three eyes open.  L AT AMULET again in the Oracle room just to be safe.  As
long as at it's at the three or four eye stage, you should be able to wait it
out safely.  Once you finally manage to do all this, GET EASEL and GET
LANDSCAPE from the ledge you find yourself on (you have to get them
separately).  Don't worry about the snake changing back; it can't get you on
the ledge.  Pigeon transfer, wait for no eyes again, and reenter the Oracle. 
PUSH BUTTON.  SE or NE.  D.  PUT ORB ON ALTAR.  You've reunited a pair of
long-lost, long-dead lovers, freeing them to their eternal reward.  Aww, isn't
that sweet...and as a show of gratitude, they leave you a beautiful flower. 
GET FLOWER.  U.  NW or SW.  SW.  PUT BLOCK IN HOLE.  S.  GET SAPPHIRE.  Done
and done; pigeon transfer.  Pick up the perch before going to the Great Hall,
and drop the perch, sapphire, and wand.  You can leave the perch here for the
remainder of the game.  Stow the landscape and easel in the Banquet Hall, then
go to the dirigible and return to Fenshire.  At the Ruined Hall, put the flower
in the vase; a door will open to the E.  Enter, take the stepladder, and return
to Flatheadia.

Well done!  The hardest parts are over (believe me), and just four Flathead
items remain.  But don't breathe easy just yet, because you'll have to do quite
a bit of running around to get one of those items.


PART 4 - THE BORDERLANDS
Flathead items: quill pen, silk tie, club (23 total)

Back at the Great Hall, drop the ladder and take the lantern, and also put on
the hardhat.  Return to the Oracle room and enter when all 4 eyes are lit.  E. 
The hardhat protects you from a fatal conking.  Go in any of the three
directions from here, push the button, continue to the dead end, and get the
pen.  Go back to the mine entrance and dispose of the hardhat.  Continue W and
SW.  A protective spell prevents you from taking the club, so leave it for now.
 SE.  E.  U.  TURN ON LANTERN.  E.  The giant birds that live here have a
strange adversity to light; you've just lost your candle or lantern, which is
why you need a spare.  Go SE posthaste or you'll lose *it* as well!  The game
informs you that the room you're in now is probably a witch's cave, and in fact
it is.  Turn to the month of Ottobur in the instructions and look at the Fun
Fax to find out how to summon the witches.  Not exactly an unholy ritual, but
it works.  PRICKLY WITCH, HELLO or SICKLY WITCH, HELLO.  Yep, that's what
they're known as, and no, WITCHES, HELLO doesn't work.  Fortunately, the
witches, despite their prickly/sickly appearance, are actually pretty friendly;
in fact, they offer to remove the spell on the club in exchange for a small
favor.  Get the vial that appears and exit to the NW.  Don't worry about losing
your candle or lantern and L AT NEST.  GET TIE.  W.  D.  Whew, here are your
light sources, none the worse for wear.  GET ALL.  TURN OFF LANTERN and pigeon
transfer.  Drop the lantern, take the cup and ladder, and add the quill pen and
tie to your burgeoning Flathead collection.  Return to the Oracle and enter
when three eyes are open.  From the Foot of Statue go SW, W, and U until you
reach the Top of the World.  Say...you don't suppose this is the *same*
Brogmoid that's holding up the world, do you?  (Well, yeah, of course it is...
:-P) There's some toe fungus here, and you may recall fungus from a different
Brogmoid body part mentioning a name some time ago.  DRINK POTION.  SAY [name
of fungus].  Whaddya know.  GET LITTLE FUNGUS.  DROP CUP (once you have the
little fungus, you don't need any more potion).  Go all the way back down to
Base of Mountain, then E, S, and W to Megaboz's hut.  DROP LADDER.  GET ON. 
OPEN DOOR.  U.  PUSH BUTTON.  That's the last one; the rebus is now fully
visible.  Leave the chest for now.  D.  READ POEM and be sure to copy it down. 
The missing words can be found in the rebus.  E.  N.  SE.  E.  NE.  You need
that vial, so take it even though you set off the security system.  Pigeon
transfer; as you do, Gumboz will appear and hastily cast a spell on you. 
You're now very hungry and have to resolve this quickly before you starve to
death.  As soon as you reemerge in the Great Hall, GET WAND AND FOOD.  Don't
eat the flamingo food just yet...poison to humans, remember?  W.  POINT WAND AT
FLAMINGO.  GET FLAMINGO (it's now actually a flamingo lawn ornament).  You have
to transform it before taking it or it'll run away.  E.  D.  N.  N.  PUT
FLAMINGO IN [left or right] BOOTH (doesn't matter).  Enter the other booth,
wait for the flamingo to revert to normal, and push the button.  You've become
a flamingo and can eat the food safely.  Do so, wait for the transformation to
wear off, and pick everything back up except for the wand, which you don't need
anymore.  Don't forget to put the amulet back on, and of course, get the pigeon
last.  Back in the Great Hall, go D to Mouth of Cave and retrace your path to
Under the World.  DROP FUNGUS.  The fungi are so happy at the reunion that they
dash off to celebrate...clearing the ear canal and allowing you to enter.  (And
this is the *last time* you'll ever have to deal with intelligent fungi, so
RELAX, all right??)  ENTER.  GET WAX.  Wow, all that trouble for earwax!  Yeah,
that'll come in handy!  Seriously, it will; you'll find out how soon enough. 
Now it's time to get what the witches need.  EXIT and go up to the Lower Hall,
then SE and E to the yellow dock.  ENTER DOCK.  ENTER.  WEAR CAP.  PUSH GREEN
BUTTON.  Z.  EXIT.  EXIT.  S.  W.  You find a poor, neglected camel here
practically dying of thirst.  RIDE CAMEL.  E.  N.  W.  The camel drinks its
fill and can now bear you across the desert.  Don't ever try to cross it alone;
even if you know the way, you'll never make it.  E.  S.  S.  SW.  SE.  SE.  NE.
 (There are other ways to get to the Great Underground Oasis, but this is the
fastest.) Now to get to work.  STAND.  FILL 9 VIAL.  POUR 9 VIAL INTO 4 VIAL. 
EMPTY 4 VIAL.  POUR 9 VIAL INTO 4 VIAL.  EMPTY 4 VIAL.  POUR 9 VIAL INTO 4
VIAL.  FILL 9 VIAL.  POUR 9 VIAL INTO 4 VIAL.  Done!  DROP 4 VIAL.  RIDE CAMEL.
 SW.  NW.  NW.  NE.  N.  N.  STAND.  Enter the yacht and return to the yellow
dock and the Great Hall.  Now go to the rebus and take a look.  Note that it's
a mirror image, so the rebus words read from right to left in regards to their
corresponding places in the poem, and the "b" is actually a "d" (and vice
versa).  Work them all out if you like before going back down.  Get the lantern
from the Great Hall, remove and drop the seaman's cap in the Banquet Hall
(you're done with the yacht), and go to the Oracle room.  Enter with all four
eyes open to return to Antharia.  Go W and follow the same path you took to get
to the precipice, then turn on the lantern and go to the cave.  GIVE VIAL TO
[sickly or prickly] WITCH.  (Again, you have to specify one.  Why they didn't
make "witches" acceptable, I'll never know...) They commence casting their
protective ward-removing spell...and hit a snag.  Turns out they've run out of
Brogmoid earwax and need you to give them some.  Told ya it would come in
handy.  GIVE WAX TO [sickly or prickly] WITCH.  Your work here is done.  Leave,
get the candle and lantern from the cliff bottom again (turn off the
lantern...just in case), and retrieve the club from Flathead Stadium.  Pigeon
transfer and put the lantern and club with all the other fateful items.

You're in the homestretch now.  Just one more treasure and the sacred word to
go.  Then you're really going to shake things up.


PART 5 - ENDGAME
Flathead item: spyglass (24 total)

Here's the solution to the rebus: TIE + BIRD - B = TIRED; PIE + N = PINE; EYE +
URN = IRON; MIND - D = MINE; W + OAR = WORE; MATCH + CHICK = MAGIC; STORM - M =
STORE.  And the completed poem: "She stood in the shade of a tired pine / She
held the prize of an iron mine / And all beheld that she proudly wore / A relic
found in a magic store"  Now you have to do just that.  From the Great Hall,
pick up the sapphire (which you got from the Iron Mine) and Ring of Ineptitude
(from the Magic Store).  Enter the Oracle with three eyes lit to return to
Fublio Valley.  SW.  SE.  S.  D.  And there's the tired pine itself!  WEAR RING
and GET SAPPHIRE after you drop it.  Success!  After you regain consciousness,
get the candle and the rusty key that wasn't there before.  Oh yeah, and rid
yourself of that stupid ring pronto.  You can also drop the sapphire, although
you don't really have to at this stage of the game.  Go U, N, NW, S, and W to
Megaboz's hut, GET ON, and U.  UNLOCK TRUNK WITH KEY.  OPEN TRUNK.  DROP KEY. 
GET NOTEBOOK AND FLY.  Nothing else in the trunk is of any use.  Return to
where you left the pigeon and pick it up, and get the fly you left in the Great
Hall.  There are two more flies you need in order to get last Flathead item. 
Go S to the Tee, W, then U four times to the Parapet.  Get the "even larger
fly".  (Yep, just like the gravel.  Now you know the kind of things text
adventure programmers have to deal with.) Flies in hand, go to the one Oracle
location you haven't been to yet; enter with two eyes open.  And of course,
what would a Zork game be without a ridiculous, completely unsolvable maze? 
SW.  SW.  NW.  Here's the spyglass...and a big and not very friendly toad.  GET
SPYGLASS.  The toad snaps it away and makes an unusual demand.  The catch is
you can't use the word "toad"; he has a name and insists that you use it.  The
name...the last thing you have to look up in the instructions...can be found in
the profile of John Paul Flathead.  (Yep, this is the *same* toad.  Talk about
longevity.)   [name], GIVE ME SPYGLASS.  Turns out that's not enough, of
course.  You have three of the required flies; the last one is nearby.  Go N,
NE, and NE.  Get the last fly and return SW, NW, and SW to the toad.  GIVE ALL
FLIES TO [name].  [name], GIVE ME SPYGLASS.  GET SPYGLASS.  Pigeon transfer for
the last time, go N, drop everything except the spyglass, and proceed to the
Banquet Hall.  Take careful stock of the impressive Flathead inventory you've
acquired.  Aside from your recently-acquired spyglass, there should be a flask,
a dumbbell, and 21 other items.  If you're missing anything...well, go and get
it (dropping the spyglass first, of course).  If everything is here, proceed
putting items in the cauldron.  (The reason you dropped off everything else at
the Entrance Hall is so you don't accidentally put a wrong item in, which, as
I've already explained, is a fatal error.) The moment the last item goes in,
the cauldron's activity goes wild...and suddenly stops.  It's showtime.  Go W,
read the notebook, and say the sacred word.  Now you're faced with your final
task, the most critical of them all...namely, getting the hell out of here!  Go
N, and keep going NW until you're out.  (If you want to be completely safe, you
can go to the Outer Gates before saying the word, but this isn't necessary.)

Once you're out, you see that the castle isn't collapsing, it's shrinking... 
eventually turning into a small white house with a boarded front door!  As you
look in utter amazement, the jester makes his final appearance...

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

"...then *he* starts changing!" continues the adventurer.  "And wouldn't you
know it, that foppish fool was none other than Megaboz himself."

"Megaboz?" gasps the scholar.  "But if he was alive during Lord Dimwit's final
days...he'd have to have been over a century and a half old by then!"

"That he was, and the peasant...though of course, he's proven himself to be far
more than that...was just as stupefied as you.  Eventually, the old wizard
explains all.  See, even after the castle was thoroughly looted, many of the
Flatheads' possessions remained.  And the Flatheads were so utterly tyrannical
and wicked that Megaboz couldn't bear the thought of them having any kind of
legacy.  He was also incensed that no one ever had the courage to stand up to
these powermongers while they were alive; in his eyes, that was an unforgivable
sin.  That's why he cast the curse on the whole empire.  The only hope of
salvation was for someone to destroy the Flathead legacy once and for all..."

"...by placing the symbols of the Flatheads in the cauldron!  And Megaboz must
have been monitoring the cauldron all along, checking off each of the items as
they were put it."

"Absolutely.  And for the peasant's valiant service, Megaboz gives him, as
promised, half the treasure of the kingdom...the treasure now lying abandoned
in the GUE, that is, for it was now his dominion.  And that is how a simple,
unnoteworthy peasant became the first ever Dungeon Master of the caverns."

"Wow.  So that's where he came from.  I'd have never guessed that he was the
ultimate rags-to-riches story.  Simply amazing."

"The new Dungeon Master thought so too.  The irony, of course, is that the
treasure he won, as vast as it was, utterly paled next to the empire that had
just been laid at his feet.  Before leaving to parts unknown, Megaboz charges
him with helping to build a new empire, one which would be benevolent and just,
and one which rejected everything the Flatheads stood for.  The white house
would serve as a warning to all who would follow the path of tyranny and
wretched excess.  For the next 65 years, adventurers from all over the world
descend upon the white house, inspired by tales of the vast treasures that lay
in the caverns below.  But all but a few perish, and no one recovers any
treasure.  Then one day, an unusually intelligent and brave adventurer goes to
the house and...well, the rest is history."  The old-timer pauses for breath. 
"So there you have it, the story of the white house.  Hope you didn't find it
*too* boring, heh heh."

"Oh, not at all.  We learn from the past so that we may understand the future."

"Right, and there's an important lesson to be learned here.  The Flatheads in
their day were absolutely untouchable.  They destroyed lives, took what they
wanted when they wanted, and didn't give a damn about the consequences.  They
thought that nothing could ever stop them.  But then some wizard throws a curse
at them, and within a year they're all dead.  And then a peasant comes by and
proceeds to destroy the last of their legacy.  Now the Flatheads and everything
they stood for are no more.  All this shows the dangers of hubris.  No matter
how high and mighty you are, there's always something, somewhere, that can
knock you off the top.  And if you tyrannize the people and laugh at their
fate, all it will earn you is a quick death.  If you're lucky."

"That is an excellent lesson.  However, I was actually thinking of something
else, something more fundamental."

Now it's the adventurer's turn to be surprised.  "What do you mean?"

"The peasant had nothing.  No power, no money, no connections.  He arrived at
the castle with little more than the clothes on his back.  And he not only
destroyed the curse, he gained control of an empire.  And now his exploits are
enshrined in history.  The moral is clear: Anyone, anyone at all, is capable of
remarkable achievements.  No matter how lowly one's origins, the potential for
greatness lies in everyone.  A frail wizard can topple a dynasty; a peasant can
crush an evil legacy."

"My word.  I first heard of this story years ago and I never realized that
lesson.  I'm impressed that you were able to."

"Well, it's just that I've always held that philosophy and believe it with all
my heart.  Especially when I think about my place in the world and what may
come in the future."

The adventurer, for the first time, notices a gleam in the scholar's eyes, one
of hope, ambition...and a powerful, almost fiery will.

The scholar looks out the window.  "Sun's beginning to set.  We'd better be
going back now; those grues stop at nothing."

The adventurer's expression is one of admiration...and perhaps just a hint of
intimidation...as they get up to leave.

=============================================================================

END NOTES -
I would like to thank GameFAQs for being so kind as to put up my walkthroughs. 
I know text adventures aren't exactly en vogue right now, but I *also* know
that there are plenty of gamers out there who grew up on them and were sad to
see them leave the mainstream.  At GameFAQs, there is no such thing as dead,
obsolete, or out of date; without them, I would not have even considered
writing walkthroughs in the first place.

Zork Zero is a remarkable game simply because it was a prequel that I not only
didn't hate, I actually grew to like as I was playing it.  This, as anyone
who's known me can attest to, is an amazing achievement.  I never got the sense
that this was due to a pathetic lack of imagination or a crass attempt to "milk
the franchise".

An extra-special thank you to "Lucretia" (yeah, I know it's a role-playing
name) for her graciousness in showing her appreciation for my efforts.  It was
this that inspired me to spend the better part of an evening playing through
the entire game again to correct all the mistakes I made.  I'm certain many
future Zork Zero players will be all the better for it.

My homepage is home.hawaii.rr.com/dkwff.

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