This jam is now over. It ran from 2022-04-30 23:00:00 to 2022-06-30 22:59:59. View 18 entries

ParserComp Logo

ParserComp is the annual Interactive Fiction /Text Adventure competition for parser games (text games controlled by text input and output). 


  • Join the Jam: 1 March 2022 to 30 June 2022
  • Submissions: 1 May 2022 to the deadline: 30 June 2022
  • Voting: 1 July to 2 Aug 2022 (Extended 2 days to allow for Narrascope)



Here are the competition results, firstly by overall score and then broken down by each category. The results were generated by taking the raw scores for each category and applying our weighting to calculate to overall score:

  • Writing [17% weighting]
  • Story [17% weighting]
  • Characters  [17% weighting]
  • Implementation [17% weighting]
  • Puzzles [17% weighting]
  • Use of multimedia (graphics and sound) [5% weighting]
  • Help and Hints [5% weighting]
  • Supplemental Materials [5% weighting]

Overall Score

The Impossible Stairs 1 19.862
Of Their Shadows Deep 2 19.613
Things That Happened In Houghtonbridge 3 18.231
Improv: Origins 4 16.415
Uncle Mortimer’s Secret 5 15.491
Alchemist’s Gold 6 15.434
Gent Stickman 7 15.297
Midnight at Al’s 8 15.264
You Won’t Get Her Back 9 15.027
October 31st 10 14.392
The Muse 11 13.800
The Euripides Enigma 12 12.438
Radio Tower 13 12.073
(out of contest) Cost of Living (14) 11.175
Anita’s Goodbye 14 10.641
Desrosier’s Discovery 15 10.477
Kondiac 16 8.555
ConText NightSky 17 7.769
Python Game 18 5.620

…and here are the rankings for each category:


Writing ScoreWriting Rank
Of Their Shadows Deep 4.750 1
The Impossible Stairs 4.500 2
Things That Happened In Houghtonbridge 4.389 3
Improv: Origins 4.300 4
Midnight at Al’s 3.722 5
Alchemist’s Gold 3.565 6
Uncle Mortimer’s Secret 3.455 7
The Muse 3.385 8
You Won’t Get Her Back 3.385 8
October 31st 3.364 9
Gent Stickman 3.083 10
The Euripides Enigma 2.923 11
(out of contest) Cost of Living 2.923 (11)
Desrosier’s Discovery 2.765 12
Radio Tower 2.650 13
Anita’s Goodbye 2.333 14
Kondiac 2.250 15
ConText NightSky 2.182 16
Python Game 1.308 17


Story ScoreStory Rank
Of Their Shadows Deep 4.350 1
The Impossible Stairs 4.231 2
Things That Happened In Houghtonbridge 4.000 3
Improv: Origins 3.350 4
Midnight at Al’s 3.167 5
The Euripides Enigma 3.154 6
Uncle Mortimer’s Secret 3.091 7
October 31st 3.091 8
Alchemist’s Gold 3.043 9
Gent Stickman 3.042 10
The Muse 3.000 11
Radio Tower 3.000 11
You Won’t Get Her Back 2.846 12
Anita’s Goodbye 2.667 13
(out of contest) Cost of Living 2.615 (14)
Desrosier’s Discovery 2.529 14
Kondiac 2.000 15
ConText NightSky 1.909 16
Python Game 1.077 17


Characters ScoreCharacters Rank
The Impossible Stairs 4.385 1
Things That Happened In Houghtonbridge 4.222 2
Improv: Origins 4.150 3
Of Their Shadows Deep 3.800 4
Gent Stickman 3.458 5
October 31st 3.182 6
Midnight at Al’s 2.944 7
Alchemist’s Gold 2.913 8
Uncle Mortimer’s Secret 2.818 9
You Won’t Get Her Back 2.769 10
The Muse 2.692 11
The Euripides Enigma 2.538 12
(out of contest) Cost of Living 2.538 (12)
Desrosier’s Discovery 2.412 13
Radio Tower 2.350 14
Anita’s Goodbye 2.083 15
ConText NightSky 1.818 16
Kondiac 1.500 17
Python Game 1.077 18


Implementation ScoreImplementation Rank
The Impossible Stairs 4.538 1
Of Their Shadows Deep 4.400 2
Things That Happened In Houghtonbridge 4.056 3
Alchemist’s Gold 3.913 4
You Won’t Get Her Back 3.846 5
Gent Stickman 3.708 6
Midnight at Al’s 3.556 7
Uncle Mortimer’s Secret 3.455 8
Improv: Origins 3.250 9
The Muse 3.000 10
October 31st 2.909 11
The Euripides Enigma 2.692 12
(out of contest) Cost of Living 2.692 (12)
Radio Tower 2.500 13
Desrosier’s Discovery 2.353 14
Anita’s Goodbye 2.250 15
Kondiac 1.750 16
Python Game 1.385 17
ConText NightSky 1.364 18


Puzzles ScorePuzzles Rank
The Impossible Stairs 4.308 1
Of Their Shadows Deep 4.000 2
Uncle Mortimer’s Secret 3.818 3
Alchemist’s Gold 3.565 4
You Won’t Get Her Back 3.462 5
Improv: Origins 3.450 6
Things That Happened In Houghtonbridge 3.389 7
Midnight at Al’s 3.333 8
October 31st 3.182 9
Gent Stickman 3.000 10
The Muse 2.692 11
Radio Tower 2.600 12
Anita’s Goodbye 2.583 13
The Euripides Enigma 2.538 14
Desrosier’s Discovery 1.706 15
Kondiac 1.667 16
(out of contest) Cost of Living 1.538 (17)
ConText NightSky 1.273 17
Python Game 1.154 18

Use of Media

Use of Media ScoreUse of Media Rank
Gent Stickman 4.500 1
The Muse 4.000 2
Of Their Shadows Deep 3.700 3
Radio Tower 2.750 4
Kondiac 2.750 4
Uncle Mortimer’s Secret 2.727 5
Things That Happened In Houghtonbridge 2.500 6
You Won’t Get Her Back 2.462 7
Alchemist’s Gold 1.957 8
Midnight at Al’s 1.889 9
October 31st 1.818 10
The Impossible Stairs 1.808 11
(out of contest) Cost of Living 1.769 (12)
Improv: Origins 1.250 12
ConText NightSky 1.182 13
The Euripides Enigma 1.154 14
Desrosier’s Discovery 1.118 15
Anita’s Goodbye 1.083 16
Python Game 1.077 17

Help and Hints

Help and Hints ScoreHelp and Hints Rank
Of Their Shadows Deep 4.150 1
The Impossible Stairs 3.846 2
Gent Stickman 3.708 3
Uncle Mortimer’s Secret 3.636 4
October 31st 3.636 5
Things That Happened In Houghtonbridge 3.556 6
You Won’t Get Her Back 3.231 7
Midnight at Al’s 3.111 8
The Muse 3.077 9
Alchemist’s Gold 2.609 10
The Euripides Enigma 2.231 11
Radio Tower 1.950 12
Improv: Origins 1.950 12
(out of contest) Cost of Living 1.462 (13)
Python Game 1.385 13
Kondiac 1.167 14
ConText NightSky 1.091 15
Anita’s Goodbye 1.083 16
Desrosier’s Discovery 1.059 17

Supplemental Materials

Supplemental Materials ScoreSupplemental Materials Rank
Uncle Mortimer’s Secret 2.636 1
The Impossible Stairs 2.308 2
Of Their Shadows Deep 2.200 3
You Won’t Get Her Back 2.077 4
Midnight at Al’s 2.000 5
Alchemist’s Gold 2.000 5
Things That Happened In Houghtonbridge 1.833 6
Radio Tower 1.550 7
(out of contest) Cost of Living 1.538 (8)
Gent Stickman 1.458 8
Improv: Origins 1.400 9
October 31st 1.364 10
Anita’s Goodbye 1.250 11
The Muse 1.231 12
Kondiac 1.167 13
ConText NightSky 1.091 14
The Euripides Enigma 1.077 15
Python Game 1.000 16
Desrosier’s Discovery 1.000 16


Here's a table of the entries, sorted by development system (games that can't be played online may need a separate interpreter program to run - details will be given on the game page):

Game Development System Play in browser? Author
October 31st.     ADRIFT No P/o. Prune
Things that Happened in Houghtonbridge  Adventuron Yes Dee Cooke
Desrosier's Discovery Custom Yes benergize
Gent Stickman vs Evil Meat Hand Custom Yes AZ
Kondiac  Custom No Picarly
The Impossible Stairs Dialog Yes mathbrush
Radio Tower Godot Yes Brojman
Anita's Goodbye  Inform No IlDiavoloVesteRosa
Improv: Origins Inform No Neil deMause
Midnight at Al's Self Storage, Truck Rentals, and Discount Psychic Readings Inform Yes Thomas Insel
Of Their Shadows Deep Inform Yes Amanda Walker
The muse Inform Yes Xavier Carrascosa
You Won't Get Her Back  Inform Yes Andrew Schultz
Alchemist's Gold PunyInform Yes Garry Francis
python game Python No theernis
Uncle Mortimer's Secret    QB64 No Older Timer
ConText NightSky  Unity No XxTheSpaceManxX
Out of competition:      
Cost of Living Custom Yes Dorian Passer



Players can rate the games through the game jam system. You must have an account to be able to rate games.

There is a 5 star scoring system. Note that the itch system requires a score to be entered for each category - a score of 0 stars is not allowed. Please see below for guidance on how to rate in each category:


Main Categories- all games must include these. Vote 1 to 5 stars in each category:

  • Writing (overall quality) [17% weighting]
  • Story (originality, interest etc) [17% weighting]
  • Characters (including PC & NPCs) [17% weighting]
  • Implementation (how well put together the game is overall - within the limitations of the engine used) [17% weighting]
  • Puzzles (originality, fairness, interest etc) [17% weighting]

= 85% of the total score available

Supplemental Categories - some games may not include these. Vote 1 star if not applicable:  (Indicated by an * in the rating form)

  • Use of multimedia (graphics and sound) [5% weighting]
  • Help and Hints [5% weighting]
  • Extras (supplementary materials: 'feelies', walkthroughs, maps and anything else included as an extra to the main game) [5% weighting]

= 15% of the total score available


Will be determined by a normalized average of the weighted categories above. The highest score wins!



What is a parser game?

A parser game is a text-based game where the player character is controlled primarily be entering text instructions via the keyboard, the results of which are also displayed as text. They're distinguished from choice-based games (like Twine games) where clicking on word leads to different text passages, by having free-text input which is parsed to produce an appropriate response. They genre was most popular and commercially successful in the 1980s (think Zork, The Hobbit , The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy etc.) and has kept a dedicated and loyal following ever since - the genre is still alive and well today!

Where can I find examples of parser games?

Check out last year's entries, and the main database of text games (including parser games) at  IFDB.

Can I enter my Twine / CoG / other choice-based game in  ParserComp? What about my graphical point and click game?

Sorry, no - much though we love and respect those sorts of games, ParserComp is for parser games only. 

My game is navigable by clicking key words - can I enter it in ParserComp?

Yes, as long as the main game mechanic is text input, parsing, and text output and the game can't be traversed purely by clicking on pre-defined choices to advance through passages of text. For example, a Gruescript or similar style of game would be eligible, a Twine or other purely choice-based game wouldn't be.

My game is a hybrid choice / parser / P&C game - can I enter that in ParserComp?

Yes, if the main control mechanism remains entering text instructions and receiving text output, and not just clicking words to advance through passages of text. Ask the organisers if in any doubt.

My game has sound effect, graphics, video, etc. - can I enter it in ParserComp?

Yes, so long as the primary game mechanic remains text input and output.

Is there a theme for this year's ParserComp?

No, games can be about anything and from any genre.

Are there any engines for creating parser games?

There are lots and they're free! Inform 6, Inform 7TADSQuest, and ADRIFT are long-established IF  programming languages,  and there are many others like Adventuron (a retro-style engine with modern capabilities), Gruescript (using a clickable keyword interface optimised for mobile devices), PunyInform (a variant of Inform designed for 8-bit platforms) and ZIL (the language Infocom used to write their famous text games in the 1980s). Check out the list here (filter the User Interface column for 'Parser'):

Can I use my use my own homebrew parser system?

Of course!

Is adult / mature content allowed? Is anything not allowed?

Pretty much everything is fine, as long as appropriate content warnings are given where necessary (see rule 10).

Is there a limit to the length (playing time) of games allowed in the competition?

No - games can be of any length. 

Who can judge / vote on the games?

Anyone with an account can vote on any of the games, except a) games that they beta-tested and b) their own games.

Is there a minimum number of games I need to judge to have my votes counted)

No - but please try and play as many as you can!

What are the voting categories?

There will be an overall best game category by which the winner will be chosen and sub-categories (to be confirmed).

Is there a limit to the number of games one person can submit to the competition?


Can I enter my previously released game?

No, entries must be previously unreleased. This also applies to beta-testing: it's fine to distribute your game privately for testing, but if you make it available on a public forum for testing  (or for any other reason) then that constitutes a release and your game won't be eligible for entry.

Can I enter the full version of a game I entered into IntroComp?


Can I enter an English translation of a game previously released in a different language?


Is there an award program?

Yes.  ParserComp 2022 will award an engraved 1st Place trophy to the overall winner.


Where can I ask questions / get advice?

Ask in the jam community area or  on the IntFiction forum (you can also DM the organisers there). The IF community is a very friendly and helpful one. The organisers can also be contacted at



1. Only parser games are eligible for entry into ParserComp. ParserComp defines a parser game as one where the primary input method is the keyboard, commands are typed in, the computer uses a parser engine to understand commands and then outputs text to screen describing the results.  We acknowledge that wider definitions exist and are valid in their own right, but in the context of the competition this is our definition. 1.1 Clicking on key words is permitted, again providing the text input/output parser is the primary method of control and the entire game cannot be traversed by clicking on words. 1.2 Illustrative graphics are permitted. 1.3 Sound effects are permitted. 1.4 Voice input and output are permitted to aid and support players with any condition which would make keyboard usage difficult or impossible, but the text input & output system needs to remain in place as the primary control system.

2. ParserComp will run on and its game jam system.  Therefore, participants and anyone wishing to judge and rate games will need an account.

3. You may use your own parser engine or any of the existing parser-based authoring tools to create your game.

4. Registration for ParserComp opens on 1 March. The submission window is from 1 May to 30 June 2022. 4.1 We'd like all games to become available for playing at the same time, after the submission window has closed, to ensure a level playing field for participants during a defined judging window.  To this end, the organisers will: keep submissions hidden on the ParserComp submissions page until the submission deadline has passed and we expect entrants to: a) keep their game hidden, i.e. in draft, on its individual game page (over which the organisers do not have control) until as close to the deadline as practicably possible, and b) not promote or encourage players to find and play a game on its individual game page until the deadline has passed. We realise that entrants may be in different time zones and it may therefore be necessary to unhide a game on the individual game page several hours before the deadline; that is acceptable as long as the spirit of this rule is observed.

5. All entries must cost nothing for judges to play. Entries may not request payment in order to play through the game, require the player to view paid advertising, or make similar commercial demands of the player.

6. All entries must be previously unreleased at the opening of judging.  ParserComp makes a specific definition of "unreleased" by which we mean that the game you wish to enter has never been widely distributed, sold, or made available for public play or download prior to the competition with the following exceptions: 6.1 Open beta testing is allowed in ParserComp. Requests for beta testers should be brief and to the point and should not be used as a means of promoting or advertising a game. Links to or files of beta versions of games should not be posted publicly as that would constitute a game release and would therefore disqualify the game for entry in the competition. Be sure to only provide such links or files to testers privately. There is no restriction on eligibility for entry into ParserComp regarding the length of time that a game has already been in Open Beta Test state.  6.2 Any game previously entered into IntroComp, but which is now complete, may be entered into ParserComp. 6.3 ParserComp considers a translation of a previously released game into the English language as a new work and therefore eligible for entry.

7. There is no restriction on the length (playing time) of a game entered into ParserComp.

8. All games must be written in English.

9. Entries must not use others’ copyright assets (including text, sounds and images) unless under Fair Use or with the express permission of the copyright holder. ParserComp will not be held responsible for any actions against game authors resulting from copyright infringement.

10. ‘Adult’ content is allowed, but entries must not contain anything illegal. They must not contain anything excessively, deliberately and grossly offensive unless such content can be absolutely justified in the name of art. Any form of hate speech is not allowed. 10.1 Games containing ‘adult’ content must contain a content warning giving accurate details of the relevant content both in-game and in any accompanying description and/or documents.

11. While you are free to talk about your entries in public, you should not attempt to influence judges’ rating behaviour or solicit ratings in any forums, on social media, or by any other means. 11.1 ParserComp reserves the right to request any post or promotional item which is deemed to break rule 11 to be removed. 11.2 ParserComp reserves the right to disqualify any entrant who refuses to remove any post or promotional item which, at the judgment of ParserComp, is in breach of rule 11.

12. Once the submission period has ended and the rating period begun, authors may only update a game for the purposes of bug fixes and not to add additional content or to further develop the game.

13. It is the responsibility of the game author to provide clear instructions (with download links) for any software needed to run and play the game including (but not limited to) the relevant interpreter i.e. Frotz, GLULX etc. Please do not assume that your audience (who will be judging and rating your game) know what software they need and where to get it.

14. If you are able to do so then please provide a downloadable copy of the game that can be run locally as opposed to launching from within  This is not mandatory and may not be possible depending on the engine used, but should be provided if possible.

15. Walkthroughs, guides, hints and any other support documentation is not mandatory but is extremely useful to players and judges.  We recommend making such supplementary material available as part of your submission.

16. You are not required to submit source code along with your game, but may do so if you wish.

17. You retain the copyright to any games they enter and may do whatever you wish with your work after the competition ends.

18. The judging window for ParserComp 2022 is from 1 July to 31 July 2022. The organizers reserve the right to extend the judging window if necessary. Anyone with an account may judge the games, with the exception of beta testers:

19. Beta testers may not rate any game that they tested.

20. Entrants may rate other’s games, but may not submit ratings for their own entries.

21. There is no minimum number of games that a judge must play or prescribed amount of time that a judge must spend with a game before rating it. However, we expect judges to make a good-faith effort to play each game as intended (if possible, to completion) before rating it.

22. ParserComp reserves the right to refuse an author entry into the competition and/or remove any submission and/or discount a judge’s rating(s) if we believe (at our judgement) they are in breach of the rules or are not operating within the spirit of the rules and the competition.

Thank you!

Fos1, Christopher


All submissions
Browser playable (11)
Windows (8)
macOS (5)
Linux (5)
Android (4)

No submissions match your filter

It's rumoured that an alchemist in the forest has been turning base metals into gold. You set out to steal some of it.
Interactive Fiction
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A story about love and disease and loss.
Interactive Fiction
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Authorized sequel to The Impossible Bottle
Interactive Fiction
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Inspiration, sin and romanticism
Interactive Fiction
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An intriguing quest in time to save Uncle Mortimer from a thousand years of incarceration
Interactive Fiction
A classic chess puzzle set to a story.
Interactive Fiction
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Explore the town and find out what happened to your aunt.
Interactive Fiction
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The research base staff on the planet Euripedes have mysteriously vanished - can you find and rescue them?
Interactive Fiction
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This isn't quite what you expected from your first day on the job after graduating from superhero school.
Interactive Fiction
Parser mystery investigation game
A short Parser game rushed into makings in 4 days, for the Parser Game Jam 2022!
Game for the ParserComp 2022
Interactive Fiction
A brief text adventure with multiple endings and time based mechanics where your choices(and when you make them) matter.
Interactive Fiction
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Interactive Fiction Parser Game WITHOUT TEXT, just hand drawing graphics. Short, minimalist, difficult puzzles.
Interactive Fiction
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The professor told you to meet him on Drescott Island. Now you're here, but where is he?
Interactive Fiction
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