|Designer(s)||Rand and Robyn Miller|
|Engine||Multimedia Applications Development Environment|
|Platform(s)||Mac OS, TurboGrafx 16, MS-DOS, FM Towns, Microsoft Windows, iOS|
|Release||November 24, 1988, December 18, 1989, May 9, 1992, June 8, 1995, July 5, 2007|
The game was first released on floppy disks in 1988 by Cyan, Inc. (now Cyan Worlds) and distributed through mail order. In 1989, it was produced for Activision as a CD-ROM version based on the floppy disk game. This version was the first computer game distributed on CD-ROM (although there had already been two games released in late 1988 in Japan for NEC's PC Engine game console on its CD-ROM² format). It runs in black-and-white on the Apple Macintosh line of computers. It was created using the HyperTalk programming language by brothers Rand and Robyn Miller, who founded the company Cyan and would go on to produce the best-selling adventure game Myst. The Manhole was later also released for the PC Engine and FM Towns.
The game was re-released for MS-DOS twice, once in 1992 by Activision as The Manhole: New and Enhanced (including a Windows 3.1 version) and again in 1995 as The Manhole: CD-ROM Masterpiece Edition by Broderbund which featured the use of color, music, voice, sound effects, and some new characters. Cyan artist Chuck Carter designed all of the color graphics in about 3 months using StrataVision 3D. In 2007, the game was released on GameTap. As of February 2011 the game is available from Good Old Games, iTunes, and as part of the "Cyan Complete Pack" on Steam.
Describing The Manhole as "the first children's software to require a hard disk", Macworld in March 1989 stated that its "realistic sounds, the fantasy-filled graphics, and the stack construction are truly impressive". The magazine "highly recommended [the game] for young children[, and] it's hard to imagine a playful soul of any age who wouldn't enjoy exploring the mind-tickling world inside The Manhole".
- "Cyan Worlds' Games Available Via Steam". CyanWorlds.com. 2010-08-07. Retrieved 2012-05-05.
- "Big Weekend Sale on Cyan Games at GOG!". CyanWorlds.com. 2012-01-21. Retrieved 2012-05-05.
- "Announcing The Manhole: Masterpiece Edition for iOS". CyanWorlds.com. 2010-08-07. Retrieved 2012-05-05.
- Visionaries PROFILES Rand and Robyn Miller
- Digital Interactivity Archived 2006-08-19 at the Wayback Machine
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- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-07-07. Retrieved 2007-08-06.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
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- Scisco, Peter (August 1989). "the Envelope, Please". Compute!. p. 6. Retrieved 11 November 2013.