The Dreamhold 9+

Interactive fiction

Zarfhome Software Consulting

Designed for iPad

    • 4.8 • 14 Ratings
    • Free



*The Dreamhold* is interactive fiction — a classic text adventure. No graphics! No point-and-click! You type your commands, and read what happens next.

*The Dreamhold* is designed for people who have never played IF before. It introduces the common commands and mindset of text adventures, one step at a time. There’s an extensive help system describing standard IF commands, as well as dynamic hints which pop up whenever you seem to be stuck.

I’ve tried to create a game which rewards many species of adventurer: the inexperienced newcomer, the puzzle-hurdler, the casual tourist, the meticulous explorer, the wild experimenter, the seeker after nuances and implications.

- Fluid interface designed for comfortable typing and reading.
- Full-length puzzle adventure with several optional side quests and hidden endings.
- Text adventure devotees can turn off the tutorials and hints, or play in Expert mode for additional challenge.
- Achievements tracked through Game Center.
- Pop-up palette of commonly used commands.
- Dynamic in-game map, so you don’t have to scribble boxes on a piece of paper.
- Full support for VoiceOver (speech output) and dictation (speech input) on devices that offer these features.
- Yes, really free. Not “free with ads,” not “freemium.” Just free. I want to introduce people to IF, and this game is how I do it.

*The Dreamhold* won the XYZZY Awards for Best Puzzles and Best Use of Medium in 2004. It is also available (for free) on my web site.

(The cover art is based on a photograph by Trey Ratcliff: The Festival of Lights in Lyon (CC by-nc-sa), remixed with images of Mercury and Io.)

What’s New

Version 1.1.3

Updated for newest devices and current iOS.

Ratings and Reviews

4.8 out of 5
14 Ratings

14 Ratings

Hotcrossbunz ,

The game is great so far!

I have been considering writing an interactive fiction for a while now so I decided to start by playing a few. This was the first I found and I love it!

Only one issue so far.

Possible minor spoiler...

If you take the mountain painting from the Atelier and hang it in the sitting room it turns into the desert painting. The mountain painting is no longer in inventory. The desert painting is both on the wall and in inventory. I haven’t progressed far enough to know if I still need it (I already got the brown mask), but if I had taken the painting before using it I wouldn’t be able to complete the game.

OldGamerSeeker ,


I have been playing text adventure games since the very first one, I still remember the excitement of getting a new Infocom or similar game and diving into it and losing myself in new worlds. I have kept up with some of the recent releases and even played this one some on the pc. I was excited when I was able to play my old games on the iPad but it just seemed to be missing something that prevented me from diving back into the old masterpieces. What you have done here is provide that missing piece. The map feature you have added is awesome, the ability to just in a few taps bring up frequently used words and type commands and even take notes is fantastic. I would love to see Interactive Fiction take off again with full length games and the features you have added here in this one. Great Job!

pirplequeen ,

Not too exciting, but still fun

I would have liked it even better and may have given it a full five stars if there had been more peril and a more climactic ending. But it was a very enjoyable game, nonetheless.

App Privacy

The developer, Zarfhome Software Consulting, indicated that the app’s privacy practices may include handling of data as described below. For more information, see the developer’s privacy policy.

Data Not Collected

The developer does not collect any data from this app.

Privacy practices may vary, for example, based on the features you use or your age. Learn More


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