March 28, 2009 at 1:51 am #21313How fun to find a site dedicated to fans of Sierra. I’m proud to say that I received “Wizard and the Princess” at age 6 when we bought our first computer: an Apple II+. I moved from screen to screen, typing in text to interact with the game, my dad at my side encouraging me to solve puzzles on my own. I remember drawing “maps” of the game’s world on little slips of paper and becoming so excited when I would be able to “walk north” “walk north” “walk east” “walk south” etc. and know exactly where I was headed.And of course, this was a BIG step up from the text-based Zork, which I also enjoyed, but the graphics of Sierra’s Wizard and the Princess were incredible at the time.“Wizard” was out before cheat books or the Internet. I remember getting stuck once or twice and writing Sierra a letter. I would get back a small business card with a hint, and I’d be back to the computer.I followed you over the years, Ken & Roberta, and although my game-playing was a bit patchy (although the Police Quest & LSL series were big hits!) over the years, I never forgot the excitement that one of your very first games provided.I’d love to hear more about the history of the creation of the Wizard and the Princess, and what the company was like at that time.Great memories. I’m glad to see that you both are enjoying life,Jim
March 28, 2009 at 9:27 am #21314Jim:
Have you read the book Hackers, by Steve Levy? It was written about Sierra around the time you describe, and is really the best reference.
That said, it isn’t a very flattering portrayal. The author felt I was a villain for trying to profit from the sale of software, which he thought should be free. I’m portrayed as an evil capitalist exploiting a herde of creative geniouses. He also depicts what happens when you take a lot of kids in their 20s, and give them more money than common sense.
Overall though, it’s a very well written, and fun to read book, and does capture that time in history; all that was good about it, and all that wasn’t.
March 28, 2009 at 9:34 am #21315Actually, I should mention that Roberta and I are about to embark on a wild adventure.
To see what we’ll be up to, check this out:
I’ll be sending out a daily blog along the way, and it should be worth reading:
March 29, 2009 at 8:21 pm #21316Ken’s on a boat!
Hello Ken and Roberta Williams. Greetings from a long time fan here!
Not sure if you remember me, but I did see you once with my father on what was my 2nd tour of Sierra Online building in Oakhurst. I wrote fan letters to you and Roberta when Kings Quest V was big and became a favorite game. Got signed replies as well –that was very exciting! I remember I was stuck in the computer room and could not wait to get home from school to restore my last saved game! One of my first trips to Yosemite was on my way to Oakhurst -now I keep going to Yosemite as much as I can every summer — love it there. If you lived in that area for so long I’d like to know if you miss it.
I still play computer games and often visit the Quest Studio’s website to download MIDI files composed using the Roland MT-32 sound module. I could never afford $500 for one of those things when I was just 14, but later found one online with the original box and all for dirt cheap.
Aside from being able to manipulate my own role in a story, the best part of Sierra games for me was the music. Something came out of me when I began to learn about how it was put together. Now I have become very involved in electronic music. I now run an Internet radio station called ‘Evolved.fm Radio’ – http://www.evolved.fm. & http://vhost.desync.com/evolved.pls Is link to tune in. It is a commercial free 160k MP3 stream and even put my own sets on the air. It has been around since 2001 and I have a lot of fun with it.
I have been checking out your boat page on nordhavn68.com. That looks so cool. You even have a Leo perch at the front! (like the Movie Titanic). If you ever bring that vessel of yours up along the California coast –bring me out to DJ for a boat party and I’ll mix-up some Sierra tunes with some beats in my set! 🙂
You must be having so much fun. I can’t wait to read over your blog entries to come.
A great video called ‘I’m on a Boat’ From Saturday Night Live – (just for fun)