September 17, 2006

TADS 3 Released

by Nick Montfort · , 10:12 pm

TADS Mike Roberts, who released the original version of TADS: The Text Adventure Development System way back in 1987, posted a wonderful announcement on Friday:

I’m pleased to announce the first TADS 3 General Release, and also a TADS 2 maintenance update.

As long-time raif [rec.arts.int-fiction] readers know, TADS 3 has been in “beta” for quite some time. Well, we’re finally declaring it ready. The official release version is available immediately from tads.org (see below), and has been uploaded to the IF Archive …

This release includes a bundle of documentation, organized into several (virtual) books: Eric Eve’s Getting Started in TADS 3, a tutorial introduction; Eric’s TADS 3 Tour Guide, an in-depth survey of the library, with practical examples of how to use most of the classes; the System Manual, a reference covering the language, run-time system, and compiler and other tools; the Technical Manual, a collection of mostly task-oriented “how to” articles that go into depth on topics of interest to many authors; and the Library Reference Manual, with details on virtually everything in the library and extensive cross-references.

TADS 3’s emergence from beta follows fairly quickly upon the arrival of Inform 7. TADS 3 is a major achievement and a very capable development system, which you can see in, for instance, Eric Eve’s All Hope Abandon, a finalist for six XYZZY awards that was written in pre-release TADS 3.

You can download the TADS 3 General Release, version 3.0.12; grab the TADS 2 update; and take a look at the documentation online. Those looking into TADS for the first time might want to check out the TADS overview; there’s also a list of what’s new in TADS 3.

In celebration, Tor Andersson has put together new versions of his great multi-system interpreters, Gargoyle (Windows and Linux) and Spatterlight (Mac OS X).