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Reefer Island

Steve Barrera 2004

Steve Barrera
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It was supposed to be a dream vacation: a cruise on the maiden voyage of the ultimate party boat, the S.S. Nuggetz.

When you arrived on the ship, you were so tired from jet lag that you slept through the ship's launch. You were awakened by a jolt and the sounds of panic, and realized that the ship was sinking! Apparently the captain was drunk and hit a reef, or something.

Somehow a current carried you away from the shipwreck and the other survivors, and you became lost at sea. And you might not be lost forever, because it looks like an island is coming into view in the direction you are drifting.

But after what you've been through, what you really need is a bong hit!

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User Comments

Canalboy (29-12-2023 12:51)

This game is extremely tough. I have played hundreds of text adventures and this one is definitely in the top ten most difficult games. I spoke to the author a few years back and he was considering a rewrite. The itch is there to retry and see if I can finish it this time.

Canalboy (04-07-2024 16:33)

This game from 2004 could well pass muster as one written 25 years earlier. It is very involved and as previously mentioned, is chock full of old school toughness. There are random deaths and perhaps most pernicious of all, it can award you points for a wrong action. Softlocks, an inventory limit and a wide geography all add to its feel of a game well out of time, although the TADS parser is pretty good and allows for multi word input.

The quest is to assemble the ingredients for a joint but it might just as well as be 'find the four magic ingredients that comprise a potion to destroy the Demon Lord' or 'collect the scattered parts of the zodiacal map and assemble them to placate the Babylonian God.'

There appear to be quite a few characters on the island from a Park Ranger to a Rastafarian. None have been much use yet.

Canalboy (07-07-2024 16:28)

This game has some odd puzzles. You cannot enter a gazebo in a garden as a swarm of mosquitos are buzzing outside. You find a can of mosquito repellent. You stride manfully to the garden and spray the mosquitos and....."the mosquitos (sic) dodges out of the way." Likewise attempting to spray, kill or otherwise exterminate the little buggers has proven fruitless. Either the parser is not up to snuff or the repellent isn't what is says on the can. This has proven to be a barrier to progress (The Great Barrier Reefer)?

Canalboy (08-07-2024 14:16)

I have subsequently managed to circumvent the mosquitos problem (the necessary command is somewhat exact) but the endless soft locks in the game have put mwe off. It is very easy to complete a task, receive something as a reward and find several days later that you have made the thing unwinnable. If you don't address the many NPCs in the game with correct messages you are liable to have fouled up. This game is up on a par with the old Phoenix games in terms of cruelty. You can buy things incorrectly, take the wrong item to the wrong location and despite apparent progress you screwed up long ago.

Strident (08-07-2024 21:57)

The author is still around on the Internet. The game's page is here: where the author mentions how easy it is to get the game into an unwinnable state.

Steve has sites there at and also at