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The Windows 95 Screensaver Maze Is Finally a Playable Game

When I was a kid, the middle-aged adults would regale us with tales of finding leeches in the good ol’ swimmin’ hole. Now that I approach their age, their heads are being filled with unwanted knowledge of olden times in which a maze would appear on our computers if we left them to their own devices for too long. Yes, Windows 95, jumping on the then-new trend of 3D first-person shooters like Wolfenstein and Doom, thought it would blow our minds to make an idle computer look like it was in the midst of a maze-crawling adventure when nobody was working.

And if you were drinking the right flavor of Mountain Dew at the time, it did blow your mind. Briefly.

We haven’t thought about it much since, but a game developer by the nom de programme of Cahoots Malone certainly has…so much so that he’s made the maze playable as Screensaver Subterfuge, with the very modern addition of a voice that sounds like Steve Carell in Anchorman yelling instructions at you. Using the original textures, he’s turned it into a cyber-hacking game that literalizes a computer’s inner workings, sort of like a gleefully stupid Tron.

Samuel Axon at Ars Technica had enough patience to actually play the thing, and describes it thusly: “You must shoot the walls to transform them into a different texture, though it’s not really clear what purpose this serves other than helping you avoid retreading your steps in the maze.”

But where are the flying toasters? I was promised a future of flying toasters. Maybe they’re in there somewhere; download the game for free here, and let us know in comments how well you fared.

Images: Cahoots Malone


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