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Ken And Roberta Williams Are Remaking Colossal Cave Adventure (IGN)

kingfey

Banned

After officially announcing their return to games last year, Sierra On-Line founders Ken and Roberta Williams are ready to show off their new project. Previously referred to as The Secret, it will be a "reimagining" of Colossal Cave Adventure — the seminal 1970's text adventure game credited with inspiring Zork, Rogue, and other formative PC games, as well as for laying the groundwork for the PC role-playing genre as a whole.

Titled Colossal Cave 3D Adventure, it is a first-person adventured designed in Unity for VR and PC. Like the original, the underlying concept is relatively simple: players explore a cave seeking treasure, encountering characters along the way including a troll, a bear, a snake and a pirate. The quest, apparently, is to "find all the treasure." The reimagined adventure will be challenging and will feature a "wide variety of puzzles to overcome" in a "completely immersive 3D world" with more than 143 locations.

The first teaser image for Colossal Cave 3D.
The first teaser image for Colossal Cave 3D.

According to Ken Williams, the creation of Colossal Cave 3D was spurred by the boredom of quarantine during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"While locked down by the pandemic I wrote a book about the old Sierra days. Its success surprised me and brought back many memories of our days making games. This led me to investigating how modern games are made and I just started coding using the Unity game engine for fun," Ken Williams said in a statement.

"I was looking for something interesting to code when Roberta suggested Colossal Cave. Roberta started to work adapting it to 3D, and I assembled a team. As we dug deeper and deeper into the game we discovered layers of complexity that explain why the game became such an industry phenomena. It has action elements, humor, a scoring system, adventure elements, interesting characters, a huge world to explore and more. This is truly a game that will delight a new generation, and 100% different than anything I've seen in the market today."

Ken and Roberta Williams were pioneering adventure game developers in Sierra On-Line. They retired in 1999 but are now returning to games for the first time in more than 20 years.
Ken and Roberta Williams were pioneering adventure game developers in Sierra On-Line. They retired in 1999 but are now returning to games for the first time in more than 20 years.

Colossal Cave 3D Adventure will support VR via the standalone Quest 2 headset, which was suggested by one of the team's artists.

"At first, we thought it would be a simple effort but quickly realized that VR is not as simple as just running the same old game on a new platform. Major design changes were required, and all graphics had to be thrown away and started over. Was it worth it? YES! Anyone who plays the VR version will be blown away. It is really staggering when you enter the cave," the pair wrote.

It has been more than two decades since Ken and Roberta Williams last made a game, but their reputations remain legendary in the games industry. The couple married at 19 and went on to pioneering careers at Sierra On-line, where they were famous for their work on the King's Quest series and a host of other classic games, most of them point-and-click adventures. IGN ranked the pair among the 25 greatest game developers ever in 2009.

The pair announced their return to gaming last year, where they said they would be working on a "Sierra-flavored" game. Titled Cygnus Entertainment, the new studio is entirely self-funded.

Cygnus is planning to release Colossal Cave 3D this summer. It will be available on the Quest 2, PC, and Mac, with additional platforms also in consideration
 

lh032

I cry about Xbox and hate PlayStation.
Animated GIF
 

TheDreadBaron

Gold Member
This is so great! They recently released Myst for VR as well, these ancient games being made relevant again for people who weren’t even born when they released warms my heart!
 

SF Kosmo

...please disperse...
This is a super interesting project, not just because Ken and Roberta Williams are returning to game development, but because Colossal Cave Adventure is truly one of the most important games ever made. It's the reason we call the genre Adventure games (even when they have no connection to the literary adventure genre). It defined concepts and design that continue to be foundational to games to this day. And it hasn't really had a remake since like 1983.

I can't think of another game that is so important that had been so neglected for so long.


 
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AMSCD

Member
Just found out about this today. I'm really excited about this, but I worry that the world may have moved on. I mean, just look how few replies this thread has received. I'm concerned there will be no interest.
 

Nickolaidas

Member
Just found out about this today. I'm really excited about this, but I worry that the world may have moved on. I mean, just look how few replies this thread has received. I'm concerned there will be no interest.
Agreed. While Space Quest, Hero's Quest Quest for Glory and King's Quest will always be fondly remembered by me, both the storytelling medium and the visual department has vastly surpassed what the Sierra games were all about (IMO, always).

Those people no longer have access to tech and manpower which could do their visions justice and cannot compete with AAA titles which do their schtick and then some.

The only ones who would buy their games today are the people old and nostalgic enough to give a crap. And those are but a few.
 

tommib

Member
Roberta Williams is up there with the best videogame innovators. Lets see what comes out of this.
 
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SF Kosmo

...please disperse...
Agreed. While Space Quest, Hero's Quest Quest for Glory and King's Quest will always be fondly remembered by me, both the storytelling medium and the visual department has vastly surpassed what the Sierra games were all about (IMO, always).

Those people no longer have access to tech and manpower which could do their visions justice and cannot compete with AAA titles which do their schtick and then some.

The only ones who would buy their games today are the people old and nostalgic enough to give a crap. And those are but a few.
Ken and Roberta are not doing this for the money. The budget is modest and they're quite rich. This is a passion project.
 
Roberta Williams and Sierra are up there with Sid Meier/Microprose and Richard Garriott/Origin as one of the creative innovators of the first era of PC Gaming. Some of the responses here illustrate how overlooked and forgotten they are.

It will be interesting to see how this turns out for no other reason than nostalgia, but I have serious doubts that this amounts to anything more than a curiosity.
 
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Havoc2049

Member
Collosal Cave was actually the first computer game I ever played as a kid. My uncle was a programmer and worked in the early computer industry and he had a Xerox CP/M desktop computer with dual 8" floppy drives at his house, which propably cost thousands of dollars and was built like a tank. He told me he had this cool computer game that I would like called Collasal Cave Adventure, and I've been hooked ever since. It's actually the first video game added to my backlog, as I could never get out of the frikin' maze. 🤣
 
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