Update: My son's adventure is done... It's called The Tenth Freighter
A Lua Text Adventure Engine: Having settled on lua as a first 'real' programming language to teach my son I created a text adventure engine for him to code up some games. (He had a blast with MIT's Scratch and Lego's MindStorms.)
There are two complete, albeit short, examples for him / you to get started with. I am learning Lua as well and so far I love it. Since I am a beginner to Lua I am certain that I am not coding idiomatically; any suggestions are welcome.
He's 10; His eyes were glazing over when I was talking about abstract concepts. He really liked Scratch because it was immediately available; very audio-visual. What sold me on Lua was Codea and iLuaBox. My son was stoked to know that he will soon be getting an iPad.
Once I got one complete adventure written he was excited to do the second with me. Now hopefully he'll take one from cradle to grave with only oversight from me.