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Gold Microphone: The Interactive Fiction of Infocom

Gold Microphone: The Interactive Fiction of Infocom

By Gold Machine
Join hosts Drew Cook and Callie Smith as they review every text adventure released by 80s gaming giant Infocom. Gold Microphone is a stand-alone companion to the Gold Machine website that will focus on the emotional experience of playing and loving these classic games. Compared with Gold Machine, this podcast will take a more relaxed and conversational approach. For feedback, questions, or just general conversation, email
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Episode 6: A Mind Forever Voyaging
Callie Smith and Drew Cook welcome guest Aaron A. Reed to discuss his 50 Years of Text Games project as well as 1985's A Mind Forever Voyaging. Aaron's experiences as both reader and author lead us to some great exchanges and insights into Steve Meretzky's classic game about art, political witness, and as-yet unexplored possibilities in computer games. Aaron's current project, 50 Years of Text Games, is a history of interactive text as told in essays, images, and infographics. See below for more information, including Aaron's sample book chapter about A Mind Forever Voyaging. We're looking forward to seeing the final product! 50 Years of Text Games: Kickstarter page A Mind Forever Voyaging sample chapter New to Gold Machine? This podcast (Gold Microphone) is a spinoff from Drew Cook's project to play and document every Infocom game. You can find that content (still in process) at Gold Machine. Drew Cook and Callie Smith come together here to have less formal conversations about the joy of playing these classic games. Get in touch! Drew and Callie don't monetize any content from the Gold Machine project. The best way to reward our efforts is by reaching out. Start a discussion, suggest a game, or leave a nice review someplace. We started these IF projects to meet people and have some rewarding IF conversations. Drew's Twitter: @GolmacB Callie's Twitter: @golmac_callie
June 22, 2022
Episode 5: Zork I
Join Callie and Drew for a discussion of Infocom's best-selling game, Zork I. They'll talk about one of their all-time favorite video game characters, the thief, as well as its amazing (yet often overlooked) worldbuilding.  The games mentioned in Ian's email were "The Hobbit," "Hampstead," "Lords of Midnight," "The Worm in Paradise," and "A Mind Forever Voyaging." Notes published at Gold Machine: Next up: A Mind Forever Voyaging featuring guest Aaron A. Reed, who has lots of great insights into AMFV thanks to his 50 Years of Text Games project!
May 18, 2022
Episode 4: Journey
Drew and Callie take a look at one of Infocom's least-loved games. Is it a complete flop? Or does it have something to offer? Full notes at Email: Drew Twitter: @GolmacB Callie Twitter: @golmac_Callie
March 27, 2022
Plundered Hearts: Follow Up
Drew and Callie return to Plundered Hearts to discuss Anastasia Salter's 2020 article, "Infocom, Romance, and the History of Feminist Game Design," published in Feminist Media Histories 6.1. In this follow-up conversation, Drew and Callie revisit the critical narrative surrounding Amy Briggs’s classic Plundered Hearts, celebrating the ways in which Salter synthesizes a variety of critical tactics in her productive and innovative reading. Plundered Hearts | Feminist Media Histories | University of California Press ( As always, you can reach them in a number of ways: Gold Machine - Games as text, text as games ( email: Drew Cook: Gold Machine (@GolmacB) / Twitter
February 13, 2022
Episode 3: Enchanter
Spell books, talking turtles, and the end of the world: Join Callie and Drew as they discuss one of their all-time favorite games--Enchanter! As discussed in the podcast, here are some links. A Note on Resources and Methods: links and advice for playing classic Infocom games Enchanter folio in poor condition (but still awesome!) Get in touch: email: contact form at twitter: @GolmacB Facebook (bare bones, but updates with new posts) Interactive Fiction Community Forum thread
January 21, 2022
Episode 2: Plundered Hearts
Perhaps no Infocom game has risen, post-1980s, so much in the eyes of players than Amy Briggs's Plundered Hearts. At the time of its release, men were too manly to play it, and at least one prominent woman reviewer declared: "it's not feminist." How did a game that seemingly had nothing to offer anyone become so beloved? Join Callie and Drew as they discuss their very 2022 experiences with Plundered Hearts. Here are some promised links: Plundered Hearts Unboxing 1987: Plundered Hearts - by Aaron A. Reed ( » Plundered Hearts The Digital Antiquarian ( Plundered Hearts | Feminist Media Histories | University of California Press ( Want to get in touch? Email: Twitter: @GolmacB Gold Machine - Games as text, text as games (
January 07, 2022
Episode 1: Wishbringer
In this first episode of Gold Microphone: A Gold Machine Podcast, hosts Drew and Callie talk about Infocom's 1985 classic game Wishbringer. Bonus: Drew's and Callie's Wishbringer unboxing video.
December 23, 2021