Crypt Shyfter

Text adventures for Windows 95©

Between the time when the oceans drank Kadabra, and the rise of the mighty Ikkagu, there was an age undreamed of, when computer games lacked graphics and were made purely of text! Some proud gamers equate these barbaric adventures to primitive cave drawings, but these primordial works of art were the first stepping stones that led to the RPGs we know and love today. Let me tell you of the days of high adventure!

a quest for badassity

Welcome to videogamepizza! My name is Kung Fu Space Barbarian and I’ll be your Dungeon Master as you play through these absurd adventures.

Under my loving guidance you’ll explore strange new worlds and battle hideous monsters. I’ll watch in amused silence as you rescue silly peasants and smite hideous evil with your beefy biceps and sexy tushy!

But more than anything else, I swear an oath to lead you on dozens of exciting adventures filled with heroic badasses, evil shapeshifting cyborgs, and lots of yummy pizza!

I am your humble servant, mighty hero. I am the barbaric bard who will sing songs of your victories and weave tales of your glories. Heck, I’ll even make sure you look good when you die!

So come! If you feel a primal urge to go on epic quests, battle evil, and become a legendary hero, then take my beefy barbarian hand and follow me! I will show you worlds of wonder and visions of glory.

old school fantasy text adventures

But wait! you say. These games have no graphics! They’re just blocks of text… this is blasphemy! You can’t call these games! They… they’re books! And books stink! Video games rule!

Bah! Leave your silly misgivings at the foot of my cave, for we have no need of fancy graphics here. We are a primitive folk! What use are colorful pixels and chiptune music to a barbarian? Such things were created for the coddled masses of civilization- not uncouth savages like us!

Besides, you don’t need some stuffy pixel artist to show you what a dragon looks like! Your beautiful brain can create its own images of dragons- AND you can picture them exactly the way you want. Like your dragons to have red scales and curved horns? Done! Maybe you prefer cute cartoon dragons? You got it! Or perhaps your heart races at the thought of grim, hulking dragons with bloody claws and serrated fangs? Fuck yeah!

With a bit of imagination you can visualize a beast far more interesting and terrifying than anything even the most skilled developer could hope to render on a screen.

play on any device

All of the Crypt Shyfter adventures are made with a program called Twine. Each adventure is nothing more than a series of web pages, so the games load quickly on any device.

The format is simple, but don’t mistake simple for boring! Crypt Shyfter adventures are filled with swashbuckling action, daring rescues, epic adventures, and sweeping romance!

…jk they’re raunchy and violent and filled with lots of swearing and fart jokes. You should totally play them!

Once you’ve had your fill of the games, go download Twine and start writing your own Crypt Shyfter legends ;)

Together we will probe the depths of our imaginations and build an entire universe around this wacky series known as CRYPT SHYFTER!


What the hell is this website?
In a time before time, in a land now long lost, there was a computer. It generated this website to capture the lost souls on the internet. I have now added yours to my collection.

What is Crypt Shyfter?
I'm pretty sure it was the first video game ever invented. That would explain a lot.

How many games are there?
Try counting the number of stars on this page, then multiply that by 23. That should give you a solid ballpark estimate. Don't forget to count the brightest stars twice, because they're probably part of a binary system.

Do I need to play the games in order?
Only if you’re a hardcore badass.

I don't get it. Are they books or games?
Call 'em whatever you want. Games. Books. Stories. Twines. Story games. Gamebooks. Interactive fiction. Choose your path stories. Text adventures. Hypertext fiction. Some adventures are more book-like, with fairly linear storylines and pathways, while others are more game-like, with stats, hit points, inventories, and random encounters. If it hurts your gamer pride to call them games, then call them stories. Or a waste of time. I'm not here to define them for you. I just write them.

When is the next adventure coming out?
In 100,000 futures from now, when the fish people control our brains and use us as puppets in their war against the spaghetti men. It will be an impossible battle, but unless our strings are cut we'll be compelled to fight a losing war against those dreadful rigatoni warriors. TL;DR- I have no idea. Please don't email me about this.

I can't email you at all! Your website is a piece of shit from 1995!
Oh, yeah.

What software do you use to make games?

Where did you learn how to make games?
Everything I know I learned from reddit and the Twine forums. HUGE special thanks to Greyelf, TheMadExile, Sharpe, Leon, Dan Cox, and CoraBlue. Without your insight and coding knowledge posted on the forums this series would never exist!

Where do you get your ideas?
Before the first star was born, I swore my allegiance to the infinite goddess Shergblatt and her hairy butt crack. As her most loyal disciple, it is my sacred duty to spread the word of Shergblatt and warn as many people as possible about the danger of Shyfters. When I arrived on this planet in the 1970s, it was obvious to me that text adventure games were the optimal way to commune with the masses. Shergblatt gave me access to her treasure trove of memories and I have done my best to relay them to you. If you don't have time to play all the games, here's the short version: Shyfters bad, pizza good.

Can I make my own Crypt Shyfter game?
Knock yourself out. And may Shergblatt's hairy asshole shit an infinite number of ideas into your brain as it did mine!

What is best in life?
Eating pizza, playing video games, and killing Shyfters.

In one of the games a robotic triceratops told me there is a huge multiverse of interconnected worlds and each game features a different version of the same main character. Is that true?

Who does your artwork?
Newgrounders mostly. Check out this page for a full list of credits.

Will you ever write a really long game? Like a novel or feature film length game?
Don't hold your breath. I like writing bite-sized fantasy games that can be played through in about 20 minutes. Long term projects aren't really my thing. If it takes me more than a month to write a story I get bored with it and move on to something else. Besides, do you REALLY need another 150+ hour RPG that you'll never finish cluttering up your desktop? Nah.

Will you ever make a Crypt Shyfter game with graphics?
Warriors of Cloud Mountain will be my first adventure with graphics. The game has a retro gameboy style to it. There is a demo available on

Can I send you my idea for a Crypt Shyfter game?
I appreciate your enthusiasm, but please don't. I have enough ideas of my own to last a hundred thousand lifetimes, thanks to the infinite goddess Shergblatt. Why not use that idea to write your own Crypt Shyfter game?

I want to give you money to write for me. How can I get in touch?
Email me: kungfuspacebarbarian [at] gmail [dot] com

Your games and website are so punk rock!
Fuck yeah.



Okay, so I got distracted with the shiny new gameboy game maker for a while, but now that I’ve had some time to dig into it a bit more and think about my next steps, I’m starting to see that programs lacks a LOT of the flexibility and functionality Twine gives me.

Besides, I already have a few more text adventures in the works, plus I’ve been working on an “engine” for all of my future games to operate under, and that is almost finished. Once that is in place, making games will be much easier. I talked about it in an earlier blog post, but basically I’m taking the combat from the JRPG adventure and the roguelike design of Crypt Shyfter Quest and mashing them together with random dungeon generation and classic old school storytelling to make some new badass adventures.

I’m really excited to finish that engine and start cranking out more longer games with fun leveling up and combat mechanics. So the gameboy stuff is being put on hold. As fun as it is, it’s a distraction from the true spirit of Crypt Shyfter and the projects I’ve been working on lately.