Myst turns 30, do you feel old yet?


In context: It feels like just yesterday that we were celebrating the 20th anniversary of Myst, the seminal point-and-click puzzle game from Cyan. Somehow another decade has passed, and there are now 30 candles to blow out on the birthday cake.

Myst arrived on September 24, 1993, for the Macintosh before landing on Windows the following March. Despite launching within three months of first-person shooter Doom, Myst felt far more advanced in terms of visual fidelity. In fact, it was so far ahead of its time that developer Cyan didn’t know until late in the game’s development if it would be feasible to run on CD-ROM (floppy drives were not even a consideration due to the game’s size).

What the creators of Doom and Myst thought of each other’s games in 1993

Cyan utilized techniques like image compression and a strategic file system layout on the disc to make it all work, and boy did it ever work. Myst was a massively successful game, selling half a million copies in its first year alone despite launching on a single platform and requiring a CD-ROM drive. It would capture and hold the record as the best-selling PC game until 2002 when it was dethroned by The Sims.

Myst spawned an entire franchise that includes several sequels, spinoffs, and remakes. The most recent entry, a VR remake of the original, arrived in 2021 and is available priced at $29.99. For a limited time, you can grab the iOS version of Myst Mobile for just $4.99 (regularly $14.99).

Some games hold a special place in your heart and for me, Myst is one of those games. I was deep into the console scene in the early 90s when Myst hit the scene. I’d never given PC gaming much thought outside of playing The Oregon Trail at school, but experiencing Myst for the first time at my cousin’s house shortly after launch was simply mesmerizing.

What’s your favorite game in the Myst franchise? Despite my fond memories of the original, I never got around to playing any of the sequels. Perhaps I need to rectify that soon.


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