Most circuitous walk

Daniel Vik

  926 Genter Street
La Jolla Ca 92037


Judges' comments

To build

  cc -O3 -ansi vik.c -L/usr/X11R6/lib -lX11 -lm -o vik

To run


Author's comments

This entry is a Wolfenstein style graphics engine where a user can navigate in a 3D world. The maze has walls with bitmap textures. The application contains a default world with textures, but the power of the engine is exposed through user configured maps. User defined worlds support up to 26 different wall textures that can even be animated. One example of a user defined world is submitted with the entry.


This program is a complete 3D engine with

  • Easy configurable maze maps
  • Up to 26 differnt bitmap textures in a maze
  • Support for animated bitmap textures
  • Uses default bitmaps in case the configured bitmaps can't be found
  • A default map in case no one is specified
  • Configurable window size
  • Navigation using cursor keys (rotate left and right, move forward and backward)

Build and Run

Compile the source code and link x libraries if nessecary. The program takes three options which have to be typed in a specific order as described below.

  Usage: prog [-w <width>] [mapfile]

width - Specifies the width of the window
mapfile - Filename containing a map

Here are a few examples:

      Command line:              Description:
$ ./prog Starts the engine using a built in
labyrinth and texture bitmaps
$ ./prog Starts the engine and loads the
labyrinth defined in the file
$ ./prog -w 400 Starts the engine using in a
window that is 400 pixels wide

Note that the mapfile has to be the last argument and the -w option if present has to be the first. The map definition files and the bitmap files should be located in the current directory.

Use the cursor keys to navigate through the labyrinth.

Creating mazes

A maze consist of a map file and texture bitmap files. The map file is an ascii text file where lower case letters represent walls. The letter tells the engine what bitmap texture file to use. The '*' character lets the engine know where to position the user. The example below shows how a map file can look:

a a
a * a
a bbbb cccccccc
c c

The engine loads the map, and creates walls. When a character 'a'-'z is found, the engine will load the corresponding texture bitmap. The bitmap file must be named "*.bmp" where '*' is substituted with the letter of the wall in the map.

So to load the map above, the files "a.bmp", "b.bmp", and "c.bmp" should be located in the same directory as the engine executable (or rather in the current directory).


The program is obfuscated in several ways, bad use of variables, use of the ? operator, recursive calls to main, bad use of for variables and the comma operator. To make the final obfuscated touch I ran indent which really made the program unreadable (I guess that is not really the intent with indent ;)

Compiler warnings

There are no compiler warnings when compiling with -ansi but there are quite many warnings from lclint. Mainly because the program is very optimized for code size.


The program only compiles and runs on X based systems.

The program does not run that smooth under cygwin. It seems to be a priority issue with cygwin and it can easily be solved by increasing the priority of the application a little bit.