Dun Darach is the 1985 sequel (actually prequel) to Tir Na Nog, written by Greg Follis and Roy Carter and again featuring the expressive Cuchulainn – the long-haired man who is not afraid to walk around with his shirt off…
Actually, for this game Cuchulainn decided to wear something on his top, so that we didn’t have to see his nipples involuntarily. Possibly because this time he is walking around a big city (the city of Dun Darach, no less), and not knowing what the obscenity laws were he decided to take no risks… Or possibly because in Tir Na Nog Cuchulainn was dead and didn’t give a sh*t about who saw him with his shirt off…
Just like in Tir Na Nog, Dun Darach is all about exploration and item-juggling and the interface is pretty much identical to the first game. Dun Darach improves on the first game in a number of areas, though.
You can interact with NPCs this time (sometimes they might even try to rob you!), and buy and sell (and steal) things in shops. There’s a casino where you can gamble, and banks where you can deposit money and actually earn interest. There’s even a pay-per-use ‘teleportation’ room.
It’s also great to see other people walking around the city streets with Cuchulainn. Dun Darach does feel like a living, breathing city, even though the entire game is squeezed into only 48K of RAM and is a little slow by today’s standards. It is possible to speed the game up in an emulator though… 🙂
If you’re going to play Dun Darach properly now you’ll need a map to find your way around. And you’ll need to get used to turning at intersections and spinning the view around.
This is classic ZX Spectrum gaming, though, and is still worth checking out today.
More: Dun Darach on Wikipedia