An interview with Ken Williams: Sierra Co-Founder

Alistair Ross interviews Ken Williams of Sierra

I met with Ken Williams for a fascinating chat about all things Sierra: From where it all began, with Ken finding a copy of a text adventure on a mainframe and Roberta being obsessed by it. To how the company was nearly bankrupt and was rescued by IBM and Tandy.

Ken talks about one of his proudest products, The Sierra Network, as well as his relationships with Al Lowe and ‘The two guys from Andromeda’ (Scott Murphy and Mark Crowe).

Ken releases a new book next month entitled ‘Not all fairy tales have happy endings’, which talks about all things Sierra, including how it really worked on the inside. The book is available next month. Check out his website: https://www.kensbook.com to register your interest in obtaining a copy.

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IBM PC: The first games ’81-’91 Part 9 (1989)

Whether it was because there was more money being ploughed into the games industry by 1989, the advancements in tech, or the fact that the PC was taking over from its contemporary competitors, the depth to the games in this year were much more than the shoot-em-ups, platformers and little adventure games of ’81-’88. Games in this year include Death Trak Quest For Glory Indianapolis 500 Leisure Suit Larry 3, Pipedream, Prince of Persia, Simcity and more! I hope you enjoy my videos! If you want to help keeping me going, please subscribe to my channel, and if you feel that my content is good, I’d really appreciate it if you could buy me a coffee or something on Patreon (www.patreon.com/alsgeeklab) or ko-fi (www.ko-fi.com/alsgeeklab)

IBM PC: The first games ’81-’91 Part 8 (1988)

I reviewed approximately 82 games for this year. The vast majority were worthy of keeping in the ‘play that again’ pile. It made for an almost impossible task of selecting just 10 #games that I’d consider the cream of the crop, so don’t hurt me too much if you don’t agree with the list! I hope you enjoy my videos! If you want to help keeping me going, please subscribe to my channel, and if you feel that my content is good, I’d really appreciate it if you could buy me a coffee or something on Patreon (www.patreon.com/alsgeeklab).

IBM PC – The first games ’81-’91: Part 7 (1987)

Wow! The #DOS games of #1987 really turned a corner! Digitized sound, colourful graphics, gameplay keeping up with the other contemporary machines of the time. This was the year when people started to notice that the boring beige box in the corner could actually be a serious games contender. From 1987 there was no stopping it! Games like Sid Meier’s #Pirates!, Defender of the crown, #Thexder, #Arkanoid and the #LucasArts premiere, Maniac Mansion showed off what the PC could do. Have a look at this trip down memory lane and see the top ten DOS games of 1987!

IBM PC – The first games ’81-’91: Part 6 (1986)

Continuing on our epic journey of the top ten games of the first decade of PC games, here’s the sixth installment. 1986!

Although there were many more titles to choose from this year compared with the last 5 years, the gaming potential of many other platforms (including consoles) that were introduced around this time, made the IBM PC and compatibles seem outdated. CGA and it’s 4 colours were still being used, despite the more ‘palateable’ EGA 16 colour display being widely available.