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Major Roguelike
Developer Noah Morgan, copx
Theme Fantasy
Influences Rogue
Released 1986
Updated 2007 Mar 19
Licensing Freeware with source code available
P. Language C
Platforms DOS, UNIX, Amiga, VMS
Interface ASCII
Game Length
[{{{site}}} 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 its 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 losing 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

The current stable version of Larn is v12.41 alpha 2, after modifications by Edwin DeNicholas. The source code to the original is available, but may not build on modern platforms because it is very old.

LarnHD is the most modern port of Larn to modern platforms, and the source code (which uses Windows-exclusive code) and a Windows binary are available.

The creator of LarnHD has also made an Adobe Flash-based version of the game available that requires no download.

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


  • iLarn
  • 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.
  • PC Larn
  • 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.

Game related links

  • Flash port of Larn by the author of LarnHD, though it doesn't mimic LarnHD's customisations to its interface and is quite probably the closest to the original Larn. No download required.
  • LarnHD, a graphical port of Larn to modern Windows.
  • Larn 12.4 alpha for Win32 (deprecated in favour of LarnHD)
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