Keen 1 Randomiser

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Keen 1 Randomiser
Keen 1 Randomiser.png
Initial release
Latest update2021-03-14
Development statusFinished
Programming languageC
PlatformDOS, (DPMI), Windows XP, 7-10, Linux
Tool TypeCommander Keen 1 Randomiser
Engine(s)Keen:Vorticons (Keen 1)
Discussion(s)PCKF Discussion Thread

The Keen 1 Randomiser is a tool written by Multimania, released on the 30th anniversary of Keen 1. It takes the original levels of Keen 1 (slightly modified to be suitable for the randomiser) and randomises various aspects, such as enemy and item placement. It also creates a patch file used for loading the new level files and patching in the random number seed. It won the "Best 30th Anniversary Tribute" award in Keen Awards 2020.


Keen 1 main menu after using the Keen 1 Randomiser's patch file
In-game screenshot of Keen 1 using files created by the Keen 1 Randomiser. Secret City is being played along with seed number 22757

Every time Keen 1 Randomiser is used, the following changes take effect, some of which can be toggled:

  • Entrances on the world map will lead to different levels.
  • Positions of spaceship parts and pogo stick are randomised.
  • It's impossible to leave a level through the exit if a spaceship part hasn't been collected yet.
  • Enemy positions are shuffled within each level.
  • Point items (such as lollipops) are shuffled within each level.
  • Door colors and Keycard locations are randomised within each level.
  • Some block colors are randomised.
  • Yorp statues now hint at item locations. Normally, they'll use the level names, but they can be toggled to use level numbers instead.
  • The random number seed is seen on the status screen and main menu, taking the place of the "Extra Keen At" number in the former.

The following things stay the same:


Run RANDKEEN.EXE to start the Keen 1 Randomiser. This will change the LEVELXX.CK1 files included within the zip file and then export them as RNDLVXX.CK1 files. A patch file, called RNDKEEN1.PAT is also created. If CK1Patch is ran with the newly created patch file, the randomised levels will be loaded along with any other changes. This can be done through the following command on either DOS or DOSBox:


Alternatively, RNDKEEN1.BAT can be ran through either DOS (386 or higher) or DOSBox. This will run the Keen 1 Randomiser and then load Keen 1 right away with the new changes.

The following command-line parameters can be used with both RANDKEEN.EXE and RNDKEEN1.BAT:

  • /? — Shows a help screen listing these parameters.
  • /SEED x — Sets the random number seed to x. This is useful for those who want to play the same randomised version. Note that not every seed is winnable, although most should be possible to complete.
  • /DEBUG — Shows additional debug information, which may contain spoilers.
  • /NOLEVELNAMES — Makes Yorp statue hints use level numbers instead of names.
  • /NOENEMYSHUFFLE — Disables enemy position shuffling.
  • /STARTPOGO — Makes Keen start with the pogo stick.
  • /STARTAMMO x — Makes Keen start with x ammo.
  • /EXTRAPOGO x — Hides x extra pogo sticks.

See Also