Realm of Impossibility

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Realm of Impossibility
Developer(s) BRAM Inc.
Publisher(s) Electronic Arts, Ariolasoft UK Ltd
Designer(s) Mike Edwards
Platform(s) Apple IIe, Atari 8-bit family, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum
Release date(s) 1984, 1985
Genre(s) Action-adventure
Mode(s) Single player, Two player
Distribution 5¼" disk, cassette

Realm of Impossibility is a computer game created by Mike Edwards and published by Electronic Arts in 1984 for the Apple IIe, Atari 8-bit family and Commodore 64 computer systems. It was converted to the ZX Spectrum in 1985 and published by Ariolasoft UK Ltd.


The game was originally self-published by BRAM Inc. as Zombies (organized by Edwards and a family friend) before producer Don Daglow acquired the rights for EA and renamed the game Mike Edwards' Realm of Impossibility. Music by Dave Warhol, who had worked with Daglow on the Intellivision game design team, was also added to the EA edition.

The game title comes from the fact that many of the mazes in the game represent optical illusions, similar to those popularized by artist M. C. Escher. Surfaces that appear vertical turn out to be horizontal, and other illusions can confuse the player.

The game allows a player to traverse through 13 mythical dungeons to gather seven crowns to defeat the evil cleric "Wistrik". Each dungeon comprises a dozen or so difficult rooms full of zombies, snakes, spiders and other various beasts. The object of each realm was to find a key or a crown. Finding a key allowed another new realm to open up to the player. Each realm had various mazes the player had to navigate in order to arrive at the correct ending.

The player could cast the following spells in the game:

  • Freeze: would hold a monster in place for a short duration
  • Protect: made the player immune to damage for a time
  • Confuse: would send the monster off wandering in a daze for a while

The player could also drop crosses, which acted as obstacles to the monster. The player could leave dozens of these in their wake and they would disappear slowly over time.

One of the more exciting aspects of the game allowed cooperative play on the same screen with another player. This gave rise to numerous strategies as the players tried to outwit the monsters together.

Realm of Impossibility was considered a success, and was part of the "third wave" of titles introduced by Electronic Arts after its founding in 1982.


Computer Gaming World stated "I do not feel that the changes [from Zombies] are numerous-enough or significant enough to justify buying the both games. However, if you have neither, then ROI is a good addition to your arcade-action game inventory".[1] Compute! praised the Apple II version's graphics and cooperative two-player mode.[2]


  1. ^ Stone, David (January 1985). "Spelunker and Realm of Impossibility". Computer Gaming World. p. 33. 
  2. ^ Williams, Michael B. (July 1987). "Realm of Impossibility". Compute!. p. 35. Retrieved 10 November 2013. 

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