Category: The Digital Antiquarian

Life Off the Grid, Part 2: Playing Ultima Underworld

I rarely play or even see current games; the demands of this historical project of mine simply don’t allow for it. Thankfully, though, being a virtual time traveler does have its advantages. Just when I’m starting to feel a little sorry for myself, having heard about some cool new release […]

Life Off the Grid, Part 1: Making Ultima Underworld

The 1980s was the era of the specialist in game development, when many of the most successful studios did just one or two things, but did them very, very well. For Infocom, that meant text adventures; for Sierra, graphic adventures; for MicroProse, military simulations; for SSI, strategic wargames and Dungeons […]

Life on the Grid

I’ve long been interested in the process by which new games turn into new gaming genres or sub-genres. Most game designers know from the beginning that they will be working within the boundaries of an existing genre, whether due to their own predilections or to instructions handed down from above. […]