QTads is a cross-platform, multimedia interpreter for TADS games. It is fully compatible with HTML TADS (aka "Multimedia TADS.") Both TADS versions in use today (v2 and v3) are supported. It runs on Linux, macOS and Microsoft Windows.

Screenshot of QTads running The Beetmonger's Journal

TADS stands for "Text Adventure Development System" and comes with its own programming language and virtual machine (the TADS VM.) QTads uses the reference implementations of the T2 and T3 VMs written by Michael J. Roberts.


The current version is 3.0, released on 2020-02-15. The list of changes since 2.1.7 can be found on the GitHub release page.

The Linux downloads are self-contained AppImages and do not require any uncommon external dependencies. They should work on all Linux distributions that are at least as recent as Ubuntu 16.04.

Linux 64-bit

Linux 32-bit

Microsoft Windows 7 or later

macOS 10.13 (High Sierra) or later

Source code

Gentoo Linux (and other Portage-based distros)

QTads is included in Portage; simply emerge “games-engines/qtads”. If you're not on ~arch (aka “testing”), you might want to keyword it in your package.keywords to ensure that you get the latest version available.

Sometimes Portage (even ~arch) does not offer the absolutely newest version though. In that case, an ebuild for the most recent version (including a live ebuild) can be found in the interactive-fiction overlay. It is accessible with the “layman” utility (app-portage/layman). If you don't already have layman installed, please read its documentation on how to configure your make.conf before adding overlays.


There's a large repository of IF-related stuff (with lots of games) called The Interactive Fiction Archive.

An easier site for finding games is the Interactive Fiction Database (“IFDB”, for short). The Interactive Fiction Database is an IF game catalog and recommendation engine, as well as a Wiki-style community project: members can add new game listings, write reviews, exchange game recommendations, and more.


QTads is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

QTads is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

Related Projects


Quite a few people contributed to the development of QTads over the years. Thanks fly out to:

Adam Thornton
Adrien Beau
Alan Mead
Andrew Plotkin
Beni Serfaty
C.E.J. Pacian
Chris Odhner
Christophe Antoine
Curt Siffert
Daniel Schepler
Denis Pokataev
Dominik 'disconnect3d' Czarnota
Emily Boegheim
Eric Eve
Eric Forgeot
Erik Temple
František Dvořák
Greg Boettcher
Guilherme De Sousa
Hugo Landau
Jim Aikin
Joe Mason
John Ziegler
Kevin Boone
Kodath duMatri
Kris Kennaway
Krister Fundin
Leif Huhn
Marc Simpson
Ming Hua
NR Turner
Nicolas Lécureuil
Petter Sjölund
Rune Berg
Rémi Verschelde
Samuel Verschelde
Stefan Müller
Thom Brown
Tomas Blaha
Tony Houlbrooke

Thanks everyone for the ideas, source code and bug reports. Also thanks to everyone who donated to this project. And of course, Mike Roberts; if there would be no Mike, there would be no Tads!

The design for this web page was inspired by the MXE project page.

Contact Information

For issues, queries, bug reports, or any other form of feedback, either about this site or QTads, please contact:

Nikos Chantziaras <realnc@gmail.com>