Silk Dust

The gameplay
Hall of fame
More of that, please!


Silk Dust is a text adventure game running on many vintage platforms. It is the third chapter of a series of games, after Two Days to the Race and The Queen's Footsteps. It runs on many vintage computers, but you can also play it directly inside a web browser.

Commodore VIC20+32K D64 imageX
Commodore 64 D64 imageX
Commodore 128 D64 imageX
Commodore Plus/4 D64 imageX
Commodore PET (>32K, 40 or 80 col) prg filesX
Commodore Amiga .adf disk imageX
Zx Spectrum (48k & Plus3) TAP and DSK filesX (disk)
Zx Spectrum (48k) .wav files (62 MB)
RC2014 Intel ihx files for hexload tool.
Olivetti M20 .img disk image (only parts 1, 2)X
CP/M .com filesX
Macintosh 68k Disk imageX
MSX 1.0 .cas and .wav files
Atari 800 (48K) .xex files AtariX
Atari ST .tos file Atari and a .st disk image
CPC 6128 .dsk disk imageX
Apple II (48K) .dsk self-booting disk image
Cambridge Z88 BBC BASIC-wrapped machine languageX
LINKWeb browserLINK Javascript + Wasm

Table 1: All versions of Silk Dust, download them and play them without moderation. No evil in-app purchase there! L/S means that the version can load and save the game.

Fig. 1: The Amiga splash screen, screenshot from my PAL Amiga 500 on a Trinitron PVM CRT screen.

Fig. 2: The Commodore 64 splash screen

Fig. 3: Playing the game on the Commodore 64


Silk Dust got reviewed in Crash #4 and on Zzap64! and I was extremely pleased to learn it got Crash Smash and a Sizzler. Silk Dust also was covered in Amiga Future #152. As usual, it is extremely pleasing and rewarding to see printed magazines appreciating my work.

The gameplay

Today is April 19, 1907. You, Emilia Vittorini, arrived yesterday in Varenna, on the shore of the beautiful Lake Como. You are hosted at the magnificent Villa Briccorosso; Princess Lucilla Briccorosso is preparing the Silk Road Race, a 10,000km rally raid between Cairo in Egypt and Peking in China, to be done by car.

You represent ITA, founded by your father, the company that built the car the Princess just bought to use during the rally. The car is supposed to be delivered today. Your role will be to assist the delivery and make sure everything is perfectly functional.

If you are interested in what is historical and what is invented in the game, have a look at this article.

An interactive fiction game is based on commands typed in a relatively natural language. Here are some hints:

look: describe again the location where the player is present
examine object: describe the specified object
north or n or go to north: moves to the north, if possible. Other directions are s, e, w, up, down.
The command bye allows to exit from the game and restart well... it restarts it. You can take objects that you "notice" and you can have a list of carried objects with inventory.

You can finish the game without using the verb use. On this, SD is similar on many classic text adventure games. If you are stuck somewhere and you notice you absolutely want to use something, try to reformulate your sentence with another verb.

The following abbreviations are available:

The game is divided in four parts. When you complete one of them, you will get a code that allows to immediately jump to the beginning of the next part. Write down that to resume the game in the future. Passwords are important. On some platforms, you can save and load the game (use save and load commands).

Let me know about typos, errors and bugs in the game!

Fig. 4: Loading Silk Dust on the Commodore VIC-20

Hall of fame


After finishing working on the adventure, I was still inspired by the atmosphere of the game and the character of the protagonist, Emilia Vittorini. I decided to write some music. This page is dedicated to it.

If you want a preview, you can stream the tracks for free on my Soundcloud page:

DarwinNE á Silk Dust original soundtrack

The downloadable version contains the bonus track Turin Suite (not available on Soundcloud) for piano and a full orchestra. Moreover, you can download the whole soundtrack (37 minutes) in AIFF 16 bit 44.1 kHz or in high quality 24 bit 192 kHz FLAC. All information here:


This game would probably not be playable without the help of Chris Carter, who proofread and spotted many bugs and weird things in the very first versions. I would like to thank Benedikt Weiß, who kindly provided a lot of suggestions for improvements.

George Nakos wrote the necessary interface code to port the game on the Atari ST, converted the splash picture and reported a large number of bugs on the first versions of Silk Dust.

I would also like to thank Hugo Labrande for the proofreading and remarks.

More of that, please!

If you liked this program, have a look at the other things I wrote for old computers.

The Queen's Footsteps The Queen's Footsteps (En, 2019-2020) for C64, Plus4, VIC-20+24KB, MS-DOS...
Two Days to the Race Two Days to the Race (En/It, 2018-2019) for C64, Plus4, VIC-20+24KB, MS-DOS...
La piramide di Innuh The Innuh pyramid (En/It, 2011-2018) for C64, C128, VIC-20, Plus4, ZX Spectrum
Alien Invasion Alien Invasion: a VIC20 game written in 2018 for the VIC-20
Cavern Explorer Cavern Explorer, another modern VIC-20 game (2018)
3D maze for the Commodore 64 3D maze for the Commodore 64 (2017)


Copyright (C) 2020-2023  Davide Bucci davbucci at tiscali dot it