Apollo 18+20: The IF Tribute Album

Twenty years ago this March, They Might Be Giants released the album Apollo 18. I'd like to create a kind of interactive fiction tribute album, i.e., a set of games, each inspired by a track on the album. And I'd like your help!

The games are now available for online and offline playing.

Short Version
Sign up for a game. Make a short (or extremely short) game. Betatest others' games. Release the games.

Long Version

December 31, 2011: Deadline to sign up for a game.
February 12, 2012: Deadline to submit your game to me. Betatesting begins.
February 26, 2012: Betatesting ends.
March 23, 2012: Deadline for submitting your final game to me.
March 24, 2012: I release the games.


  • Email me (jacksonmead@gmail.com) to sign up for a game. Especially early in the sign-up period, email me your top choice and one or two alternates. I will try to update the sign-up list below as often as possible. Update: All entries have been claimed.

  • If the sign-up period is winding down and not all of the songs are claimed, I will email everyone who has signed up and give you the opportunity to claim an additional song (likely an additional "Fingertips" song).

  • The name of your game should be the name of the song (and, yes, start the "Fingertips" ones with "Fingertips:"). Anything else is up to you. You can incorporate the lyrics or just use the song for inspiration. Note that "Space Suit" has no lyrics.

  • Games should be short (except for the "Fingertips" games, which should be even shorter; see below). Ideally the maximum play time would be around 15 minutes, and 5 or 10 minutes is just fine.

  • To keep things simple, the "Fingertips" games should be a single move. That is, there is some introductory text, the player types a single command, and then there is some concluding text. You can, of course, implement as many single commands as you'd like, but a playthrough of the game should be one single command (as in Aisle).

  • Games can be made in whatever IF format you'd like as long as they are playable both online and offline. I guess it's easiest if everything were in Z-code or Glulx format, but let me know if you'd like to do something else.

  • If you don't feel up to making a game but would like to contribute cover art for the album, let me know (see status below). If you'd like to offer to make cover art for any track or for a particular track, let me know, and I will put you in touch with the contributor for that track.

  • If you don't feel up to making a game but would like to betatest, let me know. I will be sending the games out for betatesting to all the contributors and to anyone who volunteers. Note that you are not required to betatest in order to be a contributor.

Track List
All Crossed-out entries have been claimed. Cover art: claimed.

  1. "Dig My Grave" - 1:08
  2. "I Palindrome I" - 2:25
  3. "She's Actual Size" - 2:05
  4. "My Evil Twin" - 2:37
  5. "Mammal" - 2:14
  6. "The Statue Got Me High" - 3:06
  7. "Spider" - 0:50
  8. "The Guitar (The Lion Sleeps Tonight)" (They Might Be Giants/Solomon Linda) - 3:49
  9. "Dinner Bell" - 2:11
  10. "Narrow Your Eyes" - 2:46
  11. "Hall of Heads" - 2:53
  12. "Which Describes How You're Feeling" - 1:13
  13. "See the Constellation" - 3:27
  14. "If I Wasn't Shy" - 1:43
  15. "Turn Around" - 2:53
  16. "Hypnotist of Ladies" - 1:42
  17. "Fingertips: Everything Is Catching on Fire" - 0:12
  18. "Fingertips: Fingertips" - 0:06
  19. "Fingertips: I Hear the Wind Blow" - 0:10
  20. "Fingertips: Hey Now, Everybody" - 0:05
  21. "Fingertips: Who's That Standing Out the Window?" - 0:06
  22. "Fingertips: I Found a New Friend" - 0:07
  23. "Fingertips: Come On and Wreck My Car" - 0:12
  24. "Fingertips: Aren't You the Guy Who Hit Me in the Eye?" - 0:07
  25. "Fingertips: Please Pass the Milk Please" - 0:08
  26. "Fingertips: Leave Me Alone" - 0:05
  27. "Fingertips: Who's Knockin' on the Wall?" - 0:
  28. "Fingertips: All Alone" - 0:05
  29. "Fingertips: What's That Blue Thing Doing Here?" - 0:08
  30. "Fingertips: Something Grabbed Ahold of My Hand" - 0:12
  31. "Fingertips: I Don't Understand You" - 0:27
  32. "Fingertips: I Heard a Sound" - 0:04
  33. "Fingertips: Mysterious Whisper" - 0:28
  34. "Fingertips: The Day That Love Came to Play" - 0:08
  35. "Fingertips: I'm Having a Heart Attack" - 0:22
  36. "Fingertips: Fingertips (Reprise)" - 0:10
  37. "Fingertips: I Walk Along Darkened Corridors" - 1:01
  38. "Space Suit" - 1:36

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7 Responses to Apollo 18+20: The IF Tribute Album

  1. Jason McIntosh says:

    Oh, I like the one-move restriction for the Fingertips games! Good call.

  2. Kevin Jackson-Mead says:

    That was Zarf's idea. As was calling it a tribute album. I'll take credit for recognizing them as good ideas, though :-)

  3. Dan Efran says:

    Yeah, the fingertips format is an elegant interpretation of the original. Zarf-elegant: I'm not at all surprised to hear he was involved in the scheming. (If I recall aright, the first time I heard Apollo 18 - has it really been two decades?! - was at Zarf's apartment. It made a big impression on us then, and it's been a favorite of mine ever since.)

  4. Healy says:

    I'm kinda tempted to do "Fingertips: I'm having a Heart Attack," simply because it would be so easy to do.

  5. matt w says:

    For those interested, Ryan Veeder has set up a sort of brainstorming wiki (spoilers).

  6. Jon F says:

    Is there any nudge for authors to have an unhealthy obsession with Colin Mochrie? No? I'll just leave this here: http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/flash/fingertips

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