Introducing our first special collection: Door World Magazine

Today I’m adding a new section of special collections to Break Into Chat. These are going to be small, targeted collections unique to this website.

The first such collection is Door World Magazine, a monthly online magazine about BBS door games, which was published from 1995-96 by RoAnn Vecchia and Dave Wendling of the N.U.G.I. ConSorTium.

The magazine featured articles, game reviews, and news. Many door game authors contributed an article or two, such as Dustin Nulf, Dave Wendling, Mike Jordan, William Bell, and Mark Sinclair.

Because the magazine was published right near the collapse of the BBS scene, it sometimes gives a taste of BBS game authors’ disappointments, such as after a lackluster One BBSCON in Aug. 1995.

Reading the magazine requires the use of Wendling’s custom Door World reader program to decode each month’s issue. The idea was that sysops would register the reader program and install it on their BBSes for their users.

I first learned of the existence of this magazine while scouring newsgroups for leads on print magazine articles that might mention BBS games. A number of BBSes, FTP sites, archives, and CD-ROMS preserved original ZIPs of various issues. After a lot of search, I have come up with 11 issues, though I am certainly missing at least 4.

I was excited to find such a promising source of material about BBS door games. The problem for me was the door reader. Sure, it would be possible to read each issue using DOSBox or dosemu, but even if I found something interesting, there would be no way to copy and paste the text. I needed to find a way to decode the issues and convert them to plain text.

After some experimenting, I did indeed find a way! Now you can read them on the web without the need for special software. Of course, you can download the original files, as well, and experience them in their original format.

And so, without further ado, go check out Door World Magazine!

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