Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Talk about anything you want here
User avatar
Tawmis
Grand Poobah's Servant
Posts: 11534
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 1:19 am
Gender: Not Specified
Contact:

Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Tawmis » Mon Apr 29, 2019 7:19 pm

So obviously, we're all avid fans of Sierra Online (and the various branches that would eventually fall under Sierra).

Is there another gaming company that's no longer around - or even one still around - that you're an avid fan of, or just strangely drawn to?

User avatar
Tawmis
Grand Poobah's Servant
Posts: 11534
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 1:19 am
Gender: Not Specified
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Tawmis » Mon Apr 29, 2019 7:27 pm

I ask, because I often look back at Sir-Tech...
Which made the Wizardry series, which has a special place with me...
And they also made the Realms of Arkania series (as the publisher), which inspired a lot of my D&D stuff.

This, by far is the best Wizardry fan site...
https://www.tk421.net/wizardry/overview.shtml

I made a meager Wizardry 8 page... this thing is so old... like 2001, I think it was?
http://tawmis.com/wizardry8faq/

This site has a cool write up...
https://www.filfre.net/2012/03/the-roots-of-sir-tech/

And I was randomly googling and came to an old, old, old interview...
https://www.ign.com/articles/1998/10/16 ... last-words

Where Sierra, ironically, gets brought up...

IGNPC: When you look back at some of the companies that started as the same time as Sir-tech--like Ken Williams' Sierra On-Line or Richard Garriott's Origin--do you think that maybe you should have sold at some point? Any second-guessing, things you'd have done differently?

RS: You know, to look back at the water under the bridge is always something one should reflect on. I have no regrets for doing what we did. We had a wonderful opportunity to see the world and make friends with people from all over the world. We have watched a fledgling little cottage industry, literally from garage shops, grow into a multi-billion dollar industry. To watch that unfold has been a truly and absolutely unusual experience.

Should we have sold years ago? I don't know. I mean, I'm an entrepreneur. Norman's an entrepreneur. We have that entrepreneur flair, and we're ready and willing to take reasonable risks, and we felt all along that our risks did not surpass the opportunity for reward.

At this stage in the industry, and with the ruthlessness of certain players out there, and their total disrespect for people and relationships and contracts, I'm really not sure that it was worth it anymore. And so I don't leave this industry remorseful, I leave it somewhat disappointed that it had to come to this state of affairs, because I think in the end who will lose is the consumer.

All that there will be money for are really just hack job products, if you know what I mean. You're not going to see mega-dollar projects, because the price of software has just got to a point where it costs too much in terms of what you're going to get back in terms of the unit sales.

User avatar
Semi-Happy Partygoer
Sierra Obsessed
Posts: 233
Joined: Sun Jun 25, 2017 11:44 pm
Location: Sydney
Gender: Male

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Semi-Happy Partygoer » Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:25 pm

Westwood Studios. I'm not much into strategy and haven't tried CnC, but I do like Dune II (even if I'm not very good at it yet).

Obviously, I love Kyrandia and Lands of Lore. Never tire of those games, ever. Plus, Westwood's Monopoly CD from 1995 is my favorite computerized version of that game.

Another Sierra connection - Kyrandia came close to being published by Sierra. Ken Williams loved it and put in a bid for the company, but lost out to Virgin. It was Virgin who was responsible for the "If you liked King's Quest" blurb on the side of the original Kyrandia box. Sierra threatened a lawsuit, which resulted in the orange disclaimer sticker being tacked on existing copies.
"It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers" - James Thurber

User avatar
MusicallyInspired
Village Elder
Posts: 2564
Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:46 am
Gender: Male
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by MusicallyInspired » Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:36 pm

Sierra and LucasArts obviously.

Valve for the longest time. Half-Life was the single best first person shooter I'd ever played. Half-Life 2 even moreso. Valve is an unrecognizable decrepit shell of its former self, though, and I no longer hold them in such high regard.

3D Realms/Apogee games have a special place in my heart. Moreso than id Software games actually. Even modern day 3D Realms since they were bought by a foreign investor group has been doing great lately with games like the upcoming Ion Maiden (BUILD engine game) and Wrath (Quake engine game).

Games by Nintendo are still a joy for me to play. Zelda ranks among the highest top tier games on my favourites list. As is Metroid. Mario is up there too. I'd say I'm an avid follower.

I also really like the content that Croteam puts out. Between Serious Sam and The Talos Principle they've got some serious (pun intended) talent.

Cyan Worlds. I love Myst. Like, a lot. Nice and challenging puzzle design without ANY handholding whatsoever. Right up my alley! And the lore and mechanics behind Myst and even the storytelling to me is just ace. I hope to be able to attend Mysterium at some point in the future. Obduction has been a positive experience so far as well. Looking forward to Firmament (if I ever get a VR setup, though it will support a 2D experience as well).

That about does it I think.
01010100 01110010 01110101 01110011 01110100 00100000 01010100 01001000 00110001

User avatar
Tawmis
Grand Poobah's Servant
Posts: 11534
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 1:19 am
Gender: Not Specified
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Tawmis » Tue Apr 30, 2019 11:49 am

Semi-Happy Partygoer wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:25 pm
Westwood Studios. I'm not much into strategy and haven't tried CnC, but I do like Dune II (even if I'm not very good at it yet).
Obviously, I love Kyrandia and Lands of Lore. Never tire of those games, ever. Plus, Westwood's Monopoly CD from 1995 is my favorite computerized version of that game.
Another Sierra connection - Kyrandia came close to being published by Sierra. Ken Williams loved it and put in a bid for the company, but lost out to Virgin. It was Virgin who was responsible for the "If you liked King's Quest" blurb on the side of the original Kyrandia box. Sierra threatened a lawsuit, which resulted in the orange disclaimer sticker being tacked on existing copies.
Fun fact - I used to "Work" for Westwood... but not in any sort of cool way, which is why I put "work" in quotes. I used to work at a company called "Advanced Access" (long since now gone under), where we did all of their shipping. So we had all of their games and stuff in our warehouse downstairs. So I used to do their customer support. It was a contract company - so we also did stuff for KISS Merchandising, Psychic Hotlines (the worse), etc. Plus side, we did get to purchase Westwood games at a discount, or they'd give us free copies to play (like whoever made MDK, we got free copies of it).
MusicallyInspired wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:36 pm
Sierra and LucasArts obviously.
It's funny, because as much as I loved Sierra, and Star Wars - I never (back then) got any of the LucasArts games - other than the Star Wars ones. So I missed out on the Indiana Jones, Monkey Island, etc.
MusicallyInspired wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:36 pm
Valve for the longest time. Half-Life was the single best first person shooter I'd ever played. Half-Life 2 even moreso. Valve is an unrecognizable decrepit shell of its former self, though, and I no longer hold them in such high regard.
I've never played either of the Half-Life games, believe it or not, despite their popularity. I think my first 1st person shooter was Doom, then Wolfenstien, then Hexxen, then Unreal Tournament... (Kind of funny, because I don't know if you remember but the Chex cereal made a Doom knock off called Chex Quest - I've been playing that from time to time during lunch at work). :lol:
MusicallyInspired wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:36 pm
Games by Nintendo are still a joy for me to play. Zelda ranks among the highest top tier games on my favourites list. As is Metroid. Mario is up there too. I'd say I'm an avid follower.
I remember the wife and I obsessing over Donkey Kong Country. (Or was it Kountry?) :D
MusicallyInspired wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:36 pm
I also really like the content that Croteam puts out. Between Serious Sam and The Talos Principle they've got some serious (pun intended) talent.
I have heard Serious Sam is amazing... but never played it. :(
MusicallyInspired wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:36 pm
Cyan Worlds. I love Myst. Like, a lot. Nice and challenging puzzle design without ANY handholding whatsoever. Right up my alley! And the lore and mechanics behind Myst and even the storytelling to me is just ace. I hope to be able to attend Mysterium at some point in the future. Obduction has been a positive experience so far as well. Looking forward to Firmament (if I ever get a VR setup, though it will support a 2D experience as well).
That about does it I think.
I am - was? - stupid obsessed with Myst and that whole series as well.

User avatar
MusicallyInspired
Village Elder
Posts: 2564
Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:46 am
Gender: Male
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by MusicallyInspired » Tue Apr 30, 2019 5:50 pm

Of course, Donkey Kong Country as well (with a 'C' not a 'K', ironically ;) ). The new ones Country Returns and Tropical Freeze are supposed to be equally as good (TF being spectacular allegedly). I have yet to really play either but I want to get around to it. I've started on Country Returns.
01010100 01110010 01110101 01110011 01110100 00100000 01010100 01001000 00110001

User avatar
Tawmis
Grand Poobah's Servant
Posts: 11534
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 1:19 am
Gender: Not Specified
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Tawmis » Tue Apr 30, 2019 5:55 pm

MusicallyInspired wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 5:50 pm
Of course, Donkey Kong Country as well (with a 'C' not a 'K', ironically ;) ). The new ones Country Returns and Tropical Freeze are supposed to be equally as good (TF being spectacular allegedly). I have yet to really play either but I want to get around to it. I've started on Country Returns.
Are these new(ish) like on the Switch?

User avatar
MusicallyInspired
Village Elder
Posts: 2564
Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:46 am
Gender: Male
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by MusicallyInspired » Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:03 pm

Donkey Kong Country Returns was a Wii game but I think it was on the Nintendo Eshop for Wii U too. It also got a 3DS release.

Tropical Freeze was a Wii U game that recently had a Switch release with a few extra features added.
01010100 01110010 01110101 01110011 01110100 00100000 01010100 01001000 00110001

User avatar
Tawmis
Grand Poobah's Servant
Posts: 11534
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 1:19 am
Gender: Not Specified
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Tawmis » Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:35 pm

MusicallyInspired wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:03 pm
Donkey Kong Country Returns was a Wii game but I think it was on the Nintendo Eshop for Wii U too. It also got a 3DS release.
Tropical Freeze was a Wii U game that recently had a Switch release with a few extra features added.
We used to use the Wii all the time at our friend's house... they recently moved further south... now the Wii sits in the bedroom... from time to time I will play an emulated Toejam and Earl (1 or 2).
And that's about it. It's got tons of dust on it.

But the Tropical Freeze, I may get. I think the wife may dig it. My Switch is pretty untouched too. Got like six games for it, but nothing yet that makes me want to play it. (Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3, will, ideally change that... pre-ordered already since it's exclusive to Switch).

User avatar
MusicallyInspired
Village Elder
Posts: 2564
Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:46 am
Gender: Male
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by MusicallyInspired » Tue Apr 30, 2019 9:10 pm

TF has been touted as a challenging game in classic/retro fashion. So be prepared for that. The levels aren't stupid easy, despite how misleadingly bubbly, vibrant, and cartoony the graphics may appear to be. It's truly classic DKC stuff here.
01010100 01110010 01110101 01110011 01110100 00100000 01010100 01001000 00110001

User avatar
Collector
Grand Poobah
Posts: 11313
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 12:57 am
Location: Sierraland
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Collector » Tue Apr 30, 2019 9:54 pm

Tawmis wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 11:49 am
MusicallyInspired wrote:
Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:36 pm
Sierra and LucasArts obviously.
It's funny, because as much as I loved Sierra, and Star Wars - I never (back then) got any of the LucasArts games - other than the Star Wars ones. So I missed out on the Indiana Jones, Monkey Island, etc.
I am not a huge LA fan, either. I have never been able to get into the Monkey Island games very far and as much as I would like to get into the Indy games they always fell a bit flat for me. That said there are a couple that I do love. Loom and Full Throttle.
01000010 01111001 01110100 01100101 00100000 01101101 01100101 00100001

Image

User avatar
Semi-Happy Partygoer
Sierra Obsessed
Posts: 233
Joined: Sun Jun 25, 2017 11:44 pm
Location: Sydney
Gender: Male

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Semi-Happy Partygoer » Tue Apr 30, 2019 10:27 pm

Collector wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 9:54 pm
I am not a huge LA fan, either. I have never been able to get into the Monkey Island games very far and as much as I would like to get into the Indy games they always fell a bit flat for me. That said there are a couple that I do love. Loom and Full Throttle.
I've admittedly never tried Monkey Island, but I've never had a great desire to, either. I've glimpsed Maniac Mansion and Day of the Tentacle but they didn't "wow" me. Loom and The Dig are the only two LA games I've really gotten into.
"It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers" - James Thurber

User avatar
Semi-Happy Partygoer
Sierra Obsessed
Posts: 233
Joined: Sun Jun 25, 2017 11:44 pm
Location: Sydney
Gender: Male

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Semi-Happy Partygoer » Tue Apr 30, 2019 10:29 pm

Tawmis wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 11:49 am
Fun fact - I used to "Work" for Westwood... but not in any sort of cool way, which is why I put "work" in quotes. I used to work at a company called "Advanced Access" (long since now gone under), where we did all of their shipping. So we had all of their games and stuff in our warehouse downstairs. So I used to do their customer support. It was a contract company - so we also did stuff for KISS Merchandising, Psychic Hotlines (the worse), etc. Plus side, we did get to purchase Westwood games at a discount, or they'd give us free copies to play (like whoever made MDK, we got free copies of it).
That is awesome. Imagine having a warehouse full of those games at your fingertips. I would've bought as many copies as I could for each one!
"It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers" - James Thurber

User avatar
Tawmis
Grand Poobah's Servant
Posts: 11534
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 1:19 am
Gender: Not Specified
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by Tawmis » Wed May 01, 2019 12:19 am

Semi-Happy Partygoer wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 10:29 pm
Tawmis wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 11:49 am
Fun fact - I used to "Work" for Westwood... but not in any sort of cool way, which is why I put "work" in quotes. I used to work at a company called "Advanced Access" (long since now gone under), where we did all of their shipping. So we had all of their games and stuff in our warehouse downstairs. So I used to do their customer support. It was a contract company - so we also did stuff for KISS Merchandising, Psychic Hotlines (the worse), etc. Plus side, we did get to purchase Westwood games at a discount, or they'd give us free copies to play (like whoever made MDK, we got free copies of it).
That is awesome. Imagine having a warehouse full of those games at your fingertips. I would've bought as many copies as I could for each one!
I did get quite few games... all of the Command & Conquer and Red Alert that had come out then... MDK (the first one)... and a few other games, that have long since died away on one of my struggling brain cells.

Out of curiosity I hit up Archive.org - and found the old site (images are all broken, sadly) for it : https://web.archive.org/web/19990506022 ... ccess.com/

User avatar
MusicallyInspired
Village Elder
Posts: 2564
Joined: Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:46 am
Gender: Male
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Contact:

Re: Other Gaming Companies You're Obsessed With (Past or Present or Both)?

Post by MusicallyInspired » Wed May 01, 2019 1:35 am

Huh. I never realized there was so much absence of LucasArts in so many lives here. lol

I've played them all. I grew up with them. They were as much a part of our lives playing them with my dad as Sierra games were. I've beaten most of them. I haven't beaten Maniac Mansion (though, my wife has and really enjoyed it, for being a non-gamer) or Zak McKracken or Grim Fandango. The rest are all classics though. Monkey Island is fantastic (except for Escape, the 3D one). Full Throttle, Sam & Max, Day of the Tentacle, Indy Fate of Atlantis (my goodness that's a great game, probably my favourite adventure from LucasArts). Just outright classics. Every one. I'm first and foremost a Sierra fan, but you guys really are missing out. Every LucasArts game almost was a fantastic experience, while Sierra had more content but a few more misses....all great fun but just not hitting that high mark as much. LucasArts had fewer games but each one was distinctly memorable and special. And they're all just as challenging puzzle-wise as a Sierra game (though with a bit less moon logic). They still don't measure up in my opinion to the experiences of Sierra, but they are marvelous games in their own right. Especially in storytelling which blows Sierra out of the water for the most part. And funny. Space Quest is hilarious, but LucasArts games humour is of a different sort and cracks me up just as much.

Now, the philosophy of LucasArts is what eventually turned into Telltale Games and I'm sure some of you know just how much I despise them and why. But in the Golden Age, LucasArts deserved every bit of praise as much as Sierra got for a good while there.
01010100 01110010 01110101 01110011 01110100 00100000 01010100 01001000 00110001

Post Reply