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ZZT is an action-adventure video game released by Tim Sweeney under Potomac Computer Systems (later Epic MegaGames) on January 15th, 1991[1]. It received multiple official updates, the final one being ZZT 3.2, as well as a sequel - Super ZZT.

ZZT was originally distributed in a shareware model, with the first game world in the official series, Town of ZZT, being available without charge, and additional game worlds (Caves of ZZT, Dungeons of ZZT, City of ZZT) purchasable via mail order. On October 10th, 1997[2], the full version of ZZT was made available at no cost, albeit without the source code due to it being lost in a system failure[3]. On March 15th, 2020, the release of the Reconstruction of ZZT effectively made the ZZT game engine, as well as its documentation and reverse-engineered binary-equivalent source code, available under the terms of the MIT license.

Version history

The full number of ZZT versions made available to the public is not known, as registered copies of ZZT would sometimes include silently added changes not made available in the shareware versions.

Known ZZT builds
Version Compilation date Release date Available as shareware Notes
ZZT 2.0 (Shareware) December 26th, 1990 January 15th, 1991[1] Yes
ZZT 2.0 (Registered) Unknown January 15th, 1991[1] No
ZZT 3.0 late May, 1991 June 10th, 1991[4] Yes
ZZT 3.1 (September 1991) September 14th, 1991 Unknown No
Worlds of ZZT 3.56 October 1st, 1991 October 1991 No Licensed by SoftDisk for On Disk Monthly #60 - September 1991.
ZZT 3.1 November 2nd, 1991 Unknown Yes First release under Epic MegaGames.
ZZT 3.2 (March 1992) March 9th, 1992 Unknown No Included with ZZT's Revenge.
ZZT 3.2 May 21st, 1992 Unknown Yes Final official build.
ZZT 3.2 (Free) - October 10th, 1997[5] - Equivalent to a registered copy of ZZT 3.2.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Sweeney, Tim. "ZZT Newsletter, Volume 1, Number 1, January-July 1991".
  2. News Update on epicgames.com as of February 14th, 1998.
  3. ZZT on epicgames.com as of February 14th, 1998.
  4. ASP Shareware Catalog for BBS users, 2nd volume, 10th edition. Published April 2nd, 1992.
  5. The "Thing" Has Happened! All Registered Worlds Released For FREE! on epicgames.com as of November 22nd, 1997.