The ultimate maze program.

For the longest time I’ve been searching for a maze program that generates mazes and then renders them to 3-D so they can be explored through a first-person interface, similar to first-person shooter games but without the violence and the carnage. Instead you have to concentrate on solving the maze and finding the exit.

Daedalus is just the maze program I’ve been looking for. It generates a wide assortment of mazes and allows you to edit them to your liking. Then you can easily render them to 3-D and start exploring.

Daedalus has its own macro and scripting interface for creating your own games and includes plenty of samples to play with, including an interesting variation of Pac-Man as seen from the famous muncher’s point of view. There’s also a very cool rendering of the famed Mandelbrot fractal that offers a very colorful view when seen from a first-person perpective. Navigating around the fractal in 3-D is a very trippy experience and must be seen to be believed.

This is a very fun program to play with if you enjoy mazes as much as I do. What a real find.

Variations of the 3D Maze screen saver.


I really miss the old 3D Maze screen saver that came with Windows 98. Not only was it fun to watch, it was also fun to replace the floor, wall and ceiling textures with your own pictures. Here are some variations I came up with.

Here I transform the maze into a virtual Martian landscape. The wall texture here is a real picture of Mars that was transmitted by the Sojourner rover during its thrilling exploration of Mars years ago. The floor texture came from my Rise of the Triad game CD and the ceiling texture was downloaded from the web.

I call this variation The Rules. Here I imagine being one of the last free humans exploring a futuristic world ruled by machines. The machines keep coming up with new rules for those humans who survived the invasion. The text on the ceiling reads:

RULE 599. DO NOT RUN
RULE 600. DO NOT WALK
RULE 601. DO NOT SIT
RULE 602. DO NOT BREATHE
RULE 603. DO NOT LAUGH
RULE 604. DO NOT SING
RULE 605. DO NOT SMILE
RULE 606. DO NOT SNEEZE

It is up to me to find the switch that will end the machines’ reign of terror and save the world. Pretty heavy for an ordinary screen saver.

This variation I call Vertigo is a real trip. I’m surprised the computer can still find its way around the maze. The confusion is maddening but it does a heck of a job saving your screen.
I still don’t know why 3D Maze doesn’t come with Windows XP or Vista. It actually works fine on both of those systems if you still have your Windows 98 CD.