original FrobozzCo HQ, 667 GUE


          "If it isn't a Frobozz, it's probably something else."

FrobozzCo International was a vast conglomerate of thousands upon thousands of companies that had once held a monopoly over every magical scroll, spell, staff, or magical device of any kind that was produced within the borders of the realms of Quendor until its destruction in the Great Diffusion of 1247 GUE. It can trace its origin to the Frobozz Magic Cave Company, which was formed at the behest of King Duncanthrax. There seem to be some contradictory elements on the history of the formation of the Frobozz Magic Construction Company (the forerunner of the modern industrial giant FrobozzCo International), but our researches have presented them here in one account, and are allowing the reader to decipher a conclusion. Immediately following the coronation of Duncanthrax, Drespo Molmocker, who was a minor magician, sought to interest the king with a mammoth project. The two discussed this proposal in secret, and by the end of the meeting, Duncanthrax refused, since the cost was far too great. As if this moment had been a result of decades of planning, Drespo Molmocker ensorcelled Duncanthrax with VAXUM, incanted the PLASTO spell to give him the identical appearance of Duncanthrax, and then had the real Duncanthrax imprisoned. It seems that this theft of identity was for the sole purpose of putting into action his bizarre desire to found the Frobozz Magic Company.

History tells us that with all Zork in his grasp and nothing left to conquer, Pseudo-Duncanthrax founded the Frobozz Magic Construction Company (the forerunner of the modern industrial giant FrobozzCo International) to undertake the construction of a vast network of underground caverns and highways on Arch 19, 668 GUE. It is known that the original FrobozzCo building was constructed in 667 prior to Pseudo-Duncanthrax’s founding of the company. It is also thought that the Frobozz Magic Company had been originally founded by J.B. Frobozz, whose motto was “Sell Good Magical Aids.” Thus it may be safe to conclude that Pseudo-Duncanthrax “acquired” this company instead of having been its initial founder. This usurper of the throne is classified as being the first president of the company.
Pseudo-Duncanthrax required the energy of the seven most powerful wizards of the Borphee Guild in unison with every living being to complete his mammoth visionary project. In order to control the seven most powerful wizards into doing his bidding, the king held Berknip hostage in Antharia, thereby manipulating them to use their powerful KATPIL spells to move earth wherever he wished. The king coaxed the remainder of the populace into laboring for the highways with a cache of VAXUM scrolls. With both the wizards and almost every citizen of the empire employed for the project, work quickly started on the new underground tunnels and Pseudo-Duncanthrax began expanding downward in both the eastern and western lands. The natural caverns in the eastern lands were expanded tremendously, and new caverns and passages were dug in the western lands, chiefly in the vicinity of Egreth Castle and Borphee. This outset of this entire underground project would later become known as the Great Labor. (More information regarding this project and others may be read about in the following entries: The Temple of Agrippa, Cornelius Agrippa, the Great Underground Highway).

His shrewd business acumen, paired with the utter lack of any competition, allowed the company to almost immediately broaden into several affiliated subsidiaries under the new FrobozzCo International umbrella. Three of the first spawns were: the Frobozz Magic Cave Company, the Frobozz Magic Dirt Removal Company and the Frobozz Magic Underground Sewer Installation Company. Within the year, FrobozzCo International was formed as a parent company for the burgeoning subsidiaries. By 743 GUE, FrobozzCo International would oversee more than 17,000 subsidiaries.

In 743, a young entrepreneur named John D. Flathead graduated from the venerable Borphee Business School. John D. founded Flathead Industries to invent other companies, which it would then sell to FrobozzCo. Within three years, Flathead Industries had an annual income of 80 million zorkmids. Eventually, the conglomerate decided to buy Flathead Industries, renaming it the Frobozz Magic Company Company. John D. Flathead's longtime goal was for FrobozzCo to control every single zorkmid of commerce in the Great Underground Empire. This was realized in 789 when the lone holdout, a small rutabaga farm in Mithicus, finally sold out to FrobozzCo.

Once John D. became one of FrobozzCo's 39,000 vice-presidents he was quickly able to become Chairman of the Board, as eventually would nine generations of his descendants. Raising the kingdom’s tax rate to just over 98%, Dimwit Flathead began a series of grandiose projects that soon earned him the title “Flathead the Excessive.” Thousands upon thousands of golden zorkmids were minted and spent by the royal treasury in an effort to finance Dimwit's remarkable and excessive ceremonies and constructions. Lord Dimwit gave all of his underground projects to the Frobozz Magic Cave Company, chiefly because his brother, John D. Flathead, was President of FrobozzCo International, the Magic Cave Company's parent company. Hundreds of new subsidiaries were formed daily. One of the first of these incredible projects was the creation of the Royal Museum in 776.

Following the completion of the Royal Museum in 777 GUE, the Frobozz Magic Cave Company, the largest subsidiary of FrobozzCo, moved to increase its staff even more as the well-publicized dam and volcano projects moved into full gear (though actual construction of Flood Control Dam #3 did not begin until 782-11-11). The Cave Company was also to begin creating the new 400-story FrobozzCo world headquarters in Flatheadia, which would not be completed and opened until 781.

778 was just one of the many years of continued growth for FrobozzCo and its subsidiaries. Gross income rose 14% and revenue increased by 22%. The employment rate now stood at 98.7% for the entire workforce of the Great Underground Empire and was limited only by the birth rate and the size of the Royal Family. More than 18,000 additional subsidiaries were formed or taken over during 778, further increasing the scope of the industrial empire of FrobozzCo, whose company motto was "You name it, we do it", who now was able to proclaim that it produced everything from aardvarks to zwieback.

In addition to the upcoming Flood Control Dam #3 and the hollowing out of a volcano, The Frobozz Magic Cave Company created an additional 46,000 linear bloits of tunnel that year, including nearly 200 bloits of the Great Underground Highway extension, as well as 8,000 cubic bloits of additional cavern space.

The Frobozz Magic Spell Company saw sales increased by 11% during 778, marking the twentieth year of steady growth for this lucrative FrobozzCo subsidiary. In response to the growing demand for magic spell accessories, several new FrobozzCo divisions were formed, including the Frobozz Magic Scroll Rack Company, the Frobozz Magic Spell Book Company, and the Frobozz Magic Scroll Mailing Tube Company. Four new spells were added to the Magic Spell Company product line this year, a Magic Spell Company record and a tribute to the wizards in FrobozzCo’s famous Magiclab. The four new spells were DRILBO (strips a floor of yellowed wax), BORCH (puts insects to sleep), GIZGUM (predicts visits by relatives) and QUELBO (transmutes coconuts into gold).

Sales of grue repellent nearly tripled in 778, spurred on by drastic extensive improvements made in the product and by an aggressive marketing campaign. Magic Grue Repellent Company executives proudly pointed to a 31% drop in grue-related deaths during the last year, and a consequent 31% drop in the grue population. The Magic Grue Repellent Company also increased the product line with the introduction of seven new odors of repellent, in addition to the regular old socks/burning rubber odor. The new odors included rotting eggs, dead fish, swamp gas, three-week-old meatloaf, gym locker, wet dog and mint. Several ingenious sales strategies were highly successful. The Free-Noseplugs-With-Every-Can campaign, in association with the Frobozz Magic Noseplugs Company, ran for one month and increased sales by 92%. Advertisements featuring grue-mangled corpses ran before and during the peak travel season. Finally, a joint packaging effort with the Frobozz Magic Lantern Company to produce a Frobozz Anti-Grue Kit paid off with remarkable end-of-year sales. (Scholars are slightly baffled by the reports of grues, which only had been seen in a few isolated instances since Entharion’s near-eradication of the entire race. One can only speculate that FrobozzCo’s marketing campaigns had been incessant and forceful enough to convince people that if they did not buy the Grue Repellent products, that grues would return, or “What will you have for ammunition if you happen to be the one-in-a-million to run into a the last surviving grue?”)

This financial explosion led to the construction by the Magic Cave Company of a huge 400-story company headquarters in Flatheadia in the year 781. This building, designed by Frank Lloyd Flathead, was easily the tallest, most impressive building in all of Quendor. Overlooking exaggerations such as "on a clear day you can see the FrobozzCo Building from anywhere in the world," it was still the most ambitious building ever designed or built.

In 883 the Curse of Megaboz destroyed Flatheadia, forcing FrobozzCo to relocate their headquarters to 1533 Dimwit Boulevard in the city of Borphee.

It is interesting to note that the First Dungeon Master, who indirectly caused the destruction of the Flatheadia headquarters, was rewarded by Megaboz with stock certificates representing a controlling interest in FrobozzCo International, which were passed on to the Second Dungeon Master in 948.

Dear Shareholder,

It’s been another banner year for FrobozzCo, as I’m sure you’re aware. Everyone here on the FrobozzCo Management Team joins me in thanking you personally for your continued support as an investor. Thanks to our steady growth and record revenues in 947, the Board of Directors is pleased to announce a two-for-one stock split. You’ll find your new shares enclosed.

Don’t forget about the shareholders’ meeting at the Borphee Civic Center on 2/1/948. I hope you’ll be on hand to approve the nomination of John D. Flathead X as the next Chairman of the Board. If you can’t attend, please remember to return your proxy.

Finally, as tremendous as fiscal 947 has been for us, your company is hoping that (as my great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfather was always fond of saying), this year will be even tremendouser!


John D. Flathead IX

Chairman of the Board

FrobozzCo International


As can be seen in the above letter, the descendents of John D. Flathead would continue to be chairmen of FrobozzCo International until sometime between 948~966, when the board of directors was taken over directly by interlocking combinations of the Implementors. Despite this puzzling political situation, FrobozzCo thrived right up through the end of the First Age of Magic. In fact the company made a killing in the fall of 966 by issuing a Special Crisis Edition of their Magic Catalog to convince people that even at a time when magic was failing, FrobozzCo would not fail them. In this catalog they proclaimed the official FrobozzCo business philosophy: "Sell good magical aids at a reasonable profit, treat your customers like super enchanters, and they'll always come back for more."

Little is known about the company following the temporal collapse of magic in 966. The next mention of the company is during the reign Lord Syovar III, also known as Vice Regent, who ruled the Fallen Empire from 997~1047. He was the recognized leader of the Theocracy of Quendor and most likely the Chairman of the useless Frobozz Magic Company during the time of his reign.

Due to the efforts of Undersecretary Wartle, when Mir Yannick succeeded to the High Office of Grand Inquisitor in 1047, he possessed the patent to every known piece of registered, trademarked, and patented technology in the Great Underground Empire. He even went so far as to resurrect the famed, abandoned Frobozz Magic Company as the Frobozz Electric Company and produced technological devices as opposed to magically imbued. As its CEO, he used these products to brainwash the population and birth the Second Inquisition.

With Yannick defeated in 1067 and magic restored to Zork, the Frobozz Electric Company once again reverted to the Frobozz Magic Company and enjoyed a monopoly throughout the remainder of the Second Age of Magic. As prior to the close of the First Age of Magic, the company was still managed by the Implementors, their particular canidate being Implementor One. This famed Grand Wizard was a direct conduit of the underlying forces that fueled the Zorkian universe through his administration of FrobozzCo. headquarters. He was dedicated to inventing new and painful “incentives” for the Programming Grues under his command deep beneath the earth in the Frobozz Co. Ethereal Server Host command center.

The Second Age of Magic was even more dynamic for the company than the previous age. With the restriction on magic abolished, the formerly persecuted creatures of Zork rapidly multiplied and began to venture far from their lairs unchecked. As adventurers went forth to invade the Underground in search of loot and to triumph over these monsters, the Frobozz Magic Company was revitalized and hired a new staff to work its multi-conglomerate subsidiaries. The rise of adventurers ensured that, for at least a while, the company would have high earnings. But quickly the stock market collapsed, resulting in an unreasonable zorkmid inflation, which led even FrobozzCo International to fire employees throughout its revived subsidiaries (mainly the Frobozz Magic Cave Company, the Frobozz Magic Glove Company, the Frobozz Magic Goggles Company, the Frobozz Magic Spell Book Company, and the Frobozz Magic Sword Company).

These lackluster salesmen, who were only paid redundancy in burfle chips, were reduced to donning the garb of an adventurer and joined the craze of treasure hunting, venturing into the most exotic corners of the land in search of zorkmids. The White House and other popular regions were trampled underfoot with these hordes of treasure hungry adventures who pitched their tents all over the land.

The dwindling FrobozzCo survived this financial crisis only by constructing massive shops at these gathering sites. These included the expanded FrobozzCo Perks Store, which had originally been commissioned by J. Pierpoint Flathead himself. In exchange for coconuts (though a few items could still be purchased with zorkmids) perks could be bought, giving certain adventurers advantages, like extra daily stamina, trap avoidance spells, and various other items of ingenuity. Other constructions were massive armories, magic shops, and skills training shops.

Following the first new moon after the closing of the Frobozz Magic Company, Implementor One disappeared, fulfilling an ancient prophecy. It is unknown how the infactructure of the company was managed in his absence, but outwardly, FrobozzCo only seemed to flourish more and more day by day.

Some time after the disappearance of the famed Implementor One, clans began to develop in response to the massive monster invasions. To keep their monopoly intact, FrobozzCo opened a Recruitment Center.

Toward the close of the Second Age of Magic, it was decided by a council of leading good wizards that all magic and magical devices, whether mechanical or enchanted had to be destroyed. This included the Frobozz Magic Company and all of its inventory. Whatever was not destroyed, was dismantled in this event known as the First Great Diffusion (1247 GUE). Throughout the years, only a  handful of neglected relics of this once legendary company have surfaced in obscure corners of Zork.

A FrobozzCo International stock certificate of 923,130,877 shares was placed by the First Dungeon Master into Megaboz's cauldron in attempt to halt the curse. This may be the same controlling share which was present in the Treasury of Zork in 948 GUE.