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Major Roguelike
Developer Noah Morgan, copx
Theme Fantasy
Influences Rogue
Released 1986
Updated 2007 Mar 19
P. Language C
Platforms DOS, UNIX, Amiga, VMS
Interface ASCII
Game Length
Official site of Larn

Larn was first released in 1986 by Noah Morgan.


Larn was the first roguelike game to feature multiple dungeons with a sort of surface world (in this case, a town) to connect them. The town, which only changes it's layout from one game to the next, features shops to exchange items, schools to improve skills, and a bank to store valuables. The dungeon has branch offices of the town's bank. Larn is also time-limited, achieving the main goal too late counts as loosing the game.

A few features which are unique to Larn and make it worth playing:

  • Identification is always successful. The scroll/potion type will always be known to the player regardless whether the player received any clue about the usage of the particular item.
  • The Scroll of gem perfection enchances the value of carried gems.
  • If a character manages to win Larn, his successor will have to pay taxes, which depend on the amount of gold brought to the surface.
  • Gold pieces stored in the bank earn interest over time.
  • Spells are cast by typing a 3-letter mnemonic. For example, magic missile is MLE.

Platforms and versions

Larn 12.0B Amiga port, which offered 8x8 8-color tile graphics, can be run using any Amiga emulator.

The current stable version of Larn is v12.3.1. The source code is available, but may not build on modern platforms because it is very old. A new version of Larn which will support modern platforms is in development. DOS/Windows users can download 12.4 alpha, it already works on those platforms.

Ularn v1.6, released in 2004, is avalaible for Windows and Amiga. Source is available for other systems (v1.5 is known to compile for various UNIX systems).


  • Ularn — or "Ultra-Larn" — is a descendant of Larn. It has been created by Phil Cordier in 1992 and adds new features like character classes, Dealer McDope and more levels.
  • NLarn is a rewrite with the aim to bring Larn to the 21st century. It offers a nicer user interface, colour, improved monster AI and numerous other enhancements.

Game related links