The first time the transplants ruined Oregon, they came in wagons, with dysentery and broken legs. They came on an Apple IIc, and on a crappy x86 PC. And they're back: You can now play the MS-DOS Oregon Trail for free on the Internet Archive.

It was the game that gave multiple generations of children their first taste of life's savage cruelty.

The games' settlers were bankers from Boston, and carpenters from St. Louis. They bought oxen by the yoke, and clothing for both summer and winter.

 

They traded 2 items of clothing for 359 bullets and didn't blink an eye. Because that's life on the goddamn Oregon Trail.

 

But mostly, they got fucked by life. 

 

Again and again. 

 

On the Apple IIcs of America in the 80s, we learned caprice.

 

 And in the classrooms of America we learned that the way to Oregon is paved with darkness.

 

We learned that Oregon offers hope, but no justice.

 

And that the dreams of Oregon are most often left on a toilet seat.

 

Also, we learned that the path through Walla Walla is for sissies. 


Anyway, it turns out, on a recent foray, the game is true to life: Sam Henry broke his leg three times, got the measles, got dysentery and died. Portland Elvis got the measles and died. Sam Adams got tired and died. Dead Moon got typhoid and died. 

Wes Hills, a banker from Boston, lived. He now resides in Portland. 

 Fuck you, Wes.