How did you find Keen?

Here, you can get help with anything or just chat about the original Commander Keen games.
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Post by troublesomekeen » Wed Oct 16, 2013 1:58

Thanks for posting your stories, everyone. It's wonderful to read them.
As for me, Keen was basically a hand-me-down. My big brothers were fascinated with old games and collected everything they could. I remember growing up with Keen 1 and Dreams but mostly 4 (and other games like Duke 1, Wacky Wheels, Monsters, Hocus Pocus, StarControl and Comet Busters). I don't know why I never bothered to read the game's story or go through the F1 menu. I probably didn't know where the F keys were. I had no idea Keen 2, 3, 5 and 6 even existed until around the time I joined this forum. Well... I suppose somewhere in my mind I knew there were more Keen games out there because it would logically follow that if there were a Keen 1 and a 4, there would have to at least be a 2 and 3. I could scarcely believe my eyes when I DosBoxed Keen 5 and 6 for the first time. You could say I'm still new to Commander Keen.
Back in those old days, the house rule was you could only play computer games on Sunday. With only two computers and 8 siblings ahead of me, it was quite a thing to get any play time in at all.

In the second page in this thread, Mr. M shared a few Keen manuals. Really cool. I've never seen those before. I noticed the Flect looks a tad different in the manual as oppose to the way he looks in the game:

Commander Keen in... Canteloupe Quest!

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Post by chrissifniotis » Wed Oct 16, 2013 5:47

My memories of Keen are a bit sketchy. I can't really be sure which Keen I played first - 1 or 4, but regardless me and my family fell in love with Keen 4 and eventually the rest of the Galaxy series.
I was never any good at the games, even now I can't complete any of them, but I love them all the same. I never read the stories, I just jump straight into it. Wasn't really the same love for the Vorticon series, we all knew there were three episodes before 4, but after playing 1 a number of times we never really sought to find Keen 2 or 3 until much much later - maybe only a few years ago.
Found the forums last year, joined, got Commander Genius, the TUIT trilogy even though 9 won't start, and a Galaxy render of Keen 1. I'm still mulling over my MineCraft Keen mod idea, but being the procrastinator that I am and having no talent in modding kinda keeps me away from it. As you can see I'm currently working on a possible moveset for Keen and Mortimer from a fan-made Smash game.

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Post by Cobalt » Wed Oct 16, 2013 13:05

I ordered it shortly after Sonic 3 & Knuckles for PC.
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Post by Bablet » Sat Oct 19, 2013 1:54

The Keen series will always, always hold a place at the top of my heart, because it was one of the first computer games my dad ever taught me how to play. I remember us spending months working our way through the games (I was in first grade, cut me some slack!), finding all the little secrets, trying to write messages in SGA to eachother... It was great.

Eventually things drifted, with my interests changing over time, but I never completely dropped Keen. Of course, I'm back into the fandom completely again, and it's brought back lots of good memories. Bought dad a Keen TShirt for his birthday, and he'll still turn to me every so often and talk about how he likes it.

A while back, my parents switched from XP to (h)8, and dad found himself more than frustrated with the system. Being pretty keen to programming way back, 8 really stung him, and my attempts at helping through my knowledge of 7 didn't quite help. He ended up going for a walk in a bit of a huff.

Then I downloaded Keen4 and UTUIT, and showed them to him after dinner. Instant mood change. He's absolutely thrilled that the Keen community lives on so strongly and creates such amazing continuations. :)
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Post by Levellass » Sun Oct 20, 2013 0:26

I must say I've not heard of (h)8; it sounds like some sort of Linux thing but Google comes up blank.
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Post by Benvolio » Sun Oct 20, 2013 10:56

Code: Select all

I'm gonna guess she means Windows 8. Should have chosen (h)7 instead! :P

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Post by Spatula » Sun Aug 03, 2014 21:02

Pretty common story I suspect: dad was an IT professional. I was born in 86, and we had computers in the house my whole life. Growing up, parents refused to ever let me have a console, but they allowed me to have computer games--and they played them too. At one point we all played Netwars on IPX LAN between the three computers in the house... and this was late 80s early 90s.

So I grew up on a strict regimen of Commander Keen, Doom, Maxis games, and then in the late 90s, Starcraft, TA, Homeworld, and a bunch of other RTS. Sonic 3 & Knuckles was released for the PC at some point as well, and I put some pretty serious hours into that.

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Post by joe-ilya » Thu Jun 11, 2015 19:42

My dad had an official CD with a fairly big collection of old games, keen4 and keen6 demo was there and I used to replay it a lot, that's why I know lots of secrets in keen4. :smokin
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Post by BlueGasMask » Tue Jun 16, 2015 5:06

My family had me on computers for just about as long as I could walk. When I was 2 I'd already been playing Vorticons with my dad's computer. When it broke down and we went to get a new one from Dick Smith, my dad bought Wolfenstein 3D and it came with a free copy of Keen 4.
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Post by Mort » Fri Jun 26, 2015 3:24

This is a great topic! I'm not entirely sure but I assume that I downloaded all of them off of some random BBS. I feel like I must have been in grade school when I got them, but if they were released in the early 90s I could have been in high school or nearly so. It's weird to think how long ago that was. Man! Time... It sure sucks.

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Post by Roobar » Fri Jun 26, 2015 3:54

I didn't found Keen. Keen found me!

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Post by JackDaniels » Fri Jun 26, 2015 9:30

wiivn wrote:I didn't found Keen.
I am pretty sure that was ID Software indeed ;-)

Same story - I was on holidays to my grandparents, living abroad, when I was 4 years old. They had Keen 4 on a floppy drive. I immediately fell in love with the game and played it countless hours with my dad and with my friends.

Another great memory is when I was first introduced to Commander Keen community online. I was in 12 or 13 years old and still in middle school. When I was a kid, it was always my dream to create my own Commander Keen levels or play fan-made levels, as I completed the original series multiple times already. All of a sudden, I found out that this was all possible. I faked a heavy flu so that my parents called me in sick from school. Think I stayed home for 2 - 3 weeks.

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Post by Keening_Product » Mon Jun 29, 2015 3:59

Keen 4 was the "B side" to some smeghouse shareware battleships game we got from the $2 shop when I was little. Battleships got about three plays while Keen has shaped almost two decades of life.

I still have that floppy somewhere - I'll dig it up. It still worked about five years ago.
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Post by ScarletFlame » Sat Aug 08, 2015 22:08

My father had a ton of DOS games my family would play. We didn't have a gaming console, so we would play a ton of different PC games. As you can guess, Keen was one of them. Marooned on Mars was the first game I finished and beat.

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Post by GalaxyEyesPhotonDragon » Wed Aug 19, 2015 20:22

Well as early as I can remember, which was about the age of 4, my mom was playing lots of DOS games, Commander Keen was one of these (Starting with Secret of the Oracle) She let me play it and my little mind got hooked instantly.
Cut to maybe 4 years later, I was going through my mom's library of CDs (which was huge let me tell you) and I found a disc FULL of PC games, Commander Keen again being among them, and she had episodes 1-6 and Dreams on there. (I had played Keen Dreams prior to this, my mom would joke about some of the enemies, especially the killer broccoli, we always found it funny how they run about headbutting and all.) Having not played 1-3. I got on them immediately. And since then I have played and replayed Commander Keen over and over and over and over (skip a few) and over again.

Then I found the modding community about less than half a decade ago and got on the community's TUIT trilogy and to this day I'm still Keening, I've got a whole library of mods now too. ._.

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