Crystal Caves

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Crystal Caves
Crystal Caves CD Cover.jpg
CD Cover art
Developer(s)Apogee Software
Publisher(s)Apogee Software
Designer(s)Frank Maddin
Artist(s)Lucinda Maddin, George Broussard
Platform(s)DOS, Mac OS, Windows, Linux
ReleaseOctober 23, 1991[1]
Genre(s)Side scrolling platformer

Crystal Caves is a trilogy of side-scrolling platform games, developed and published by Apogee Software. It was originally going to be released in September 5, 1991 but was delayed for a month.[2] The three episodes have the titles "Troubles with Twibbles," "Slugging it Out" and "Mylo Versus the Supernova".

The first episode is available for free, while the remaining two need to be paid for. According to the designer Frank Maddin, this marketing method "worked pretty well for the time."[3] All three games have identical gameplay, and differ only in level design, some graphics and the story.


Mylo Steamwitz, a down-on-the-luck space trader, formulates his latest get-rich scheme by buying a farm rich in a popular specie to meet market demand. To raise enough money for the farm, and to pay off his creditors, he flies to the perilous caves in the Altair System to mine precious crystals. Having failed in his farming businesses due to miscalculations, he decides to buy a solar system and make it a vacation resort. He heads back to the perilous Crystal Caves for enough crystals to trade and buy the solar system.


Crystal Caves was inspired by Miner 2049er. The main character's name, "Mylo Steamwitz", was coined by George Broussard and was meant to sound like a loser's name. Most graphics were created by Frank Maddin.[4]

Development on Crystal Caves began back when George Broussard was still releasing games under the name Micro F/X. A few months into the development (when about 50-70% of the game was complete[4]) George joined Apogee and Crystal Caves became an Apogee product.[3]

On October 24, 2005, 3D Realms (formerly Apogee) released a maintenance patch to fix a bug in the game which set the player's computer's clock backwards 100 years after playing on Windows XP.[5]


Crystal Caves gameplay

Mylo Steamwitz enters a cavern with the goal of collecting all of the crystals within, while contending with hostile alien creatures, environmental hazards, and other obstacles. There is no penalty for exiting a cavern prematurely, but the cavern must then be started from the beginning when the player returns. Many caverns (particularly those later in the game) require that Mylo manipulate or reverse gravity or work in the dark to complete a cavern.


  1. ^ "3D Realms Site: Crystal Caves". 3D Realms News. 3D Realms. Retrieved 2009-06-05.
  2. ^ Apogee Software 1991 Catalog
  3. ^ a b "3D Realms News: The Apogee Legacy #5". 3D Realms News. 3D Realms. Retrieved 2009-06-06.
  4. ^ a b "Frank Maddin Interview". Perilous Crystal Caves Website. Retrieved 2009-06-06.
  5. ^ "3D Realms News: Updates for some older titles available". 3D Realms News. 3D Realms. Retrieved 2010-06-13.

External links[edit]