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Spring 1990 

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Ken Williams 

Executive Editor 

John Williams 


Nancy Smithe 


Mark DeMent 

Sabine Duvall 
Bill Eaken 

Nancy Smithe 

Greg Steffen 


Bridget McKenna, Marti McKenna 

Johnnie Magpie, Nancy Smithe, 
John Williams, Ken Williams 

Customer Support Contributors 

Liz Jacobs, Ed Ferguson, 

Kerry Sergent, Kathy Sands, 

Mike Weaver 

Notice to User's (iroups & 

Newsletter FCditors 

The Sierra News Magazine is our at- 
tempt to inform interested computer owners 
about improvements in Sierra products and 
progress of the computer industry at large. If 
you think what we’ve written belongs in 
your publication, feel free to reprint the ar- 
ticle. When reprinting an article, 
credit the Sierra News Magazine and the 
author of the article. 

NOTE: We must make an exception to 
this policy for the excerpts from Compute 
Magazine and Software People. These 
works are the property of those credited and 
they must give their permission to reprint 
their text. Advertising is copyright of 
advertisers and may not be reprinted without 

Advertising Sales 

Phoebe Thompson & Associates, 
15640 Gardenia Way 
Los Gatos, CA 95032 


The Sierra News Magazine is 
published for the dealers and customers 
of Sierra On-Line, Inc. 
Copyright 1990 Sierra On-Line, Inc. 


Sierra On-Line is a public company. 
Sierra On-Line stock is listed on the 
NASDAQ Exchange as SIER. 


A Relatively Long Article On The Short History Of Sierra On-line, Inc 4 

... What Lies Ahead? 13 

Bill Davis — Creative Director 16 

Keeping Up With Jones and The Cinematic Process 38 

CODENAME: Iceman — A Graphic Novel 47 

Reprint — Sierra's On-Line 41 

Dynamix 43 

Software People: 

An Insider's Look At The Personal Computer Software Industry 54 


Message from the President 3 

“Heard It In The Hallway” 

Sierra’s Rumor Mill Section 22 

Interactive — New Cartoon Strip by Bill Davis 19 

Letters 23 

Rob Holland Tours Sierra 24 

Customer Service Forum 

Come Tour Sierra & Visit Yosemite 25 

Customer Support Solutions 

featuring CODENAME: Iceman 26 

Technical Support Solutions 

Several Helpful Solutions 27 

Manual Installation Of Sierra Programs On MS-DOS Hard Disk 28 

Sierra Boot Disk Instructions 29 

What's Happening On-line 40 

Product Information 51 

Product Shipping Schedule 53 

Cartoon Contest and Winners 30 

Spring Contest Winners 37 

News Magazine Contest #1 36 

Sierra Invites You To Come Home And Meet The Family! 

News Magazine Contest #2 37 

Be A Character In Kings Quest V 

Ordering Information 57 

Upgrade Information 61 

Sierra’s Top Ten Best Sellers 62 

Coming Next Issue 62 


You may reach the hint system by dialing I-900-370-KLUE. Our California customers need to 
call I -900-370-5 1 13. ALL hint questions MUST be directed to the previously mentioned “900” 
numbers, as there will be NO hints given on our Customer Service lines. This service is available 
24 hours a day. The charge for this service will be 75 cents for the 1 st minute and 50 cents for every 
additional minute. Long distance charges are included in this fee. Callers under the age of 18 must 
get their parent’s permission before calling the hint line. At this time, the automated hint system 
is only available within the United States. 

All other questions will be answered by calling our new Customer Support number at area code 
(209) 683-8989. Again, please note, ALL hints must be obtained by dialing 1 -900-370-KLUE and 

All contents copyright Sierra On-Line. Not to be reproduced in any form without express written 

Page 2 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California ! -900-370-KLUE / Inside 1-900-370-51 !3 

Sierra News Magazine 


By Ken Williams 

This year, Sierra is celebrating its 
tenth anniversary as a software com- 
pany. Simultaneously, Broderbund and 
Origin Systems are also celebrating 
theirs. 1 really can't recall any other 
software companies that have been 
around that long except Microsoft and 
Digital Research. There are no com- 
panies I can think of celebrating their 
eleventh, twelveth or umpteenth an- 
niversary. The personal computer 
software industry is only a little over ten 
years old. 

Through the years numerous 
magazine articles and books have told 
the history of Sierra. What I've tried to 
do here is to document the evolution in 
the computer and software industry that 
has taken place during my career. 
Separately in this newsmagazine are ar- 
ticles by Doug Carlston, President of 
Broderbund, about the industry's early 
days and by my brother, John Williams, 
about Sierra's growth as a company. I 
hope you en joy our nostalgic memories. 

For a person interested in computers 
there cannot have been a better time to 
have been born. My career in the 
computer industry Ix'gan at a time that 
allowed me to witness, in a very 
compressed time period, the complete 
evolution of the computer industry. 

My first memory, vaguely recol- 
lected, of a computer goes back twenty 
years to 1969 when for some reason I 
received a tour of the UCLA college 

campus. I was in ninth grade in high 
school. The college had a computer of 
some sort with a teletype machine at- 
tached to it. On that machine was a game 
called Star Trek. It was based very loose- 
ly on the TV show and was displayed 
entirely in text on a teletype (think of it 
as an extremely slow typewriter). You 
could pilot a spaceship through the 
galaxy battling Klingons. I fell in love, 
knowing even then that my future would 
be in computers. 

In 1972, after a brief stint in college, 
computers were well along in their 
evolution. It was not unusual to find 
large mainframe computers filling 
whole rooms. My first jobs were in the 
Los Angeles area working for service 
bureaus. What a service bureau did was 
to provide data processing services for 
companies too small to have their own 
computer. Remember that in those days 
almost any computer was a million dol- 
lar purchase and that very few com- 
panies could afford one of their own. So 
instead they would send their work out 
to a service bureau who would provide 
services to hundreds of 

The .service bureaus I worked for had 
a combination of “state of the art" equip- 
ment and left over Junk from the early 
days. Being inexperienced, I was the one 
who operated and programmed the Junk 

Have you ever seen a deck of computer 
cards? Tliey are 8" by y cards with 80 
columns of holes, each column repre- 
senting one letter or number. During the 
seventies the computer industry was 
heavily dependent on cards. To this day, 
even on fxrrsonal computers, you find little 
details, such as the default size of text files 
at 80 columns, that only m;ike sense when 
you remember that the industry's r(X)ts are 
in decks of cards. Some of my first 
programming assignments were to physi- 
cally arrange wires in a patch board .so that 
two decks of cards could get merged 
together in a proper sequence. 

For instance, if your company had a 
mailing list, you would punch each 
customer's name and address into a card. 
Your customer list would be represented 
by a deck of cards with little holes in 
them. We had another machine that 
would sort the cards. And we had a 
machine that would read a card at a time 
and display it on the printer. When you 
added a new customer we could either 
sort the entire deck of cards or sort Just 
today’s additions and then merge them 
into the big deck. 

Can you imagine this? I don't believe 
I saw my first tape drive connected to a 
computer until 1974. Tapes were great. 
You could put an entire customer list on 
ONE TAPE! The reels of tape were 3/4" 
thick and alx)ut ten inches around. The 
tape decks stood about six feet tall and 
were incredibly noisy. An incredible ex- 
perience in those days was to watch a 
sort in progress on a tape drive. You have 
to visualize this. We have a customer list 
on tape. What is actually on the tape is 
an exact magnetic copy of thousands of 
cards each representing one customer. 
Somehow we want to sort this list from 
the random sequence it is now in into zip 
code sequence. At most, computers in 
those days (which my current employer 
could afford) had 1 to 2K of memory. 
Obviously you couldn't read the tape 
into memory. So, what you did was to 
use multiple tape drives, usually three. 
I'his would be a fun program for the 
hackers amongst you to write. Sorting in 
those days was a big part of our lives. 
Data processing really came down to: 
punch it on a card, load it on a tape, 
merge it into to master data base, and 
print it. 

Somewhere in the mid I970's 
Roberta started working as a computer 
operator and later as a computer 
programmer. Roberta was a great com- 
puter operator but an OK programmer. 

Continued on pa^e 35 

Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6S3-S9S9 Orders / -800-326-6054 

Pufte 3 

King of Arts 

It's your turn to get creative. GRASP, the multimedia 
system for IBM PCs and compatibles, let's you do It all. 
Draw backgrounds and characters, then animate 
them. Add music and sound effects. Program keyboard 
and mouse responses to create your own gamesi 

GRASP makes animation easy, with simple commands 
to display, fade, and move images on screen. GRASP 
includes PICTOR, the paint program that lets you 
create your own images; CAP, which captures screens 
from other programs and games; and IMSET, which 
prints images on your printerl And with GRASP you 
can add studio-quality sound accompaniment through 
your music card or CD-ROM player. 

Meed more? GRASP has all the features of Basic, C, 
and other programming languages. Keep track of 
scores, display text, and get user input from the 
keyboard and mouse. GRASP works in CGA, EGA, VGA, 
and extended VGA modes, up to 800x600 and 

GRASP version 3.5 - $199 plus $6 S/H. 

Hard disk and 256K RAM required. 

“Grasp is clearly the hands-down winner in terms of sheer power, flexibility, and speed. 
Nothing else even comes close.” 

^ —PC Magazine 

Paul Mace Software, 400 Williamson Way, Ashland, Oregon 97520 Phone 800-523-0258, 503-488-2322 





-Apple releases the Apple 
11+ with 4XK {Ken s first 

-CompuServe enters the 
infomiation service industry 
-Apple releases first printer - 
S Hen type 



-Apple FORTRAN released 

-Ken and Roberta release 
Mystery House 
Apple 3 released 
-Sierra {On-Line Systems) 
releases its first action game 



-Sierra {On-Line Systems) 
releases its first word prex'essor 
A ugust 

-IBM PC released 


-Sierra wins Video 
Magazine’s Arcade Award 
for Jawbreaker 

-Sierra wins Softsel Hot List 
Best Seller Award for Frogger 



-Apple releases Lisa computer 

-IBM PC XT released 
-Apple lie released 

-Apple hires John Scully 
-Sierra wins Electronic 
Games Magazine’s 
Certificate of Merit for Best 
Arcade/Action Computer 
Game for Crossfire 
-Sierra moves headquarters 
from Coarsegold, CA to 
Oakhurst, CA 

Pai^e 6 



A Relatively Long Article on the Short 

hy John Williams as told to Marti McKenna 


j ■ he story of the beginnings ol Sierra On-Line has been told a dozen times over the 

\ H last years. There was the first profile of Ken and Roberta in September 1 980 of now 

^ JL. defunct (but then all powerful) Softalk Magazine. There were the accounts of their 

^ growth published in the book Hackers, and the bcnik Software People, and a variety of articles 

; in such publications as the Wall St. Journal and People Magazine. A number of these accounts 

^ were written by myself for inclusion in Sierra’s catalog and this magazine, and even more of 

j them appeared in the industry journals that seem to come and go with the emergence of each 

i new personal computer. 

For those hundreds of thousands (perhaps millions) of Sierra game players that have read 
I those accounts, I offer a different view of the emergence, adole.scence, and now .some would 

> say dominance, of the software company that people now know as Sierra On-Line, Inc. 

j For the record, my name is Williams too (just like Ken and Roberta). The first name is 

John. I’m the Williams you haven't heard of or from, working behind the scenes as a marketer 
and promoter of the products of Sierra. I was an observer of Ken and Roberta long before they 
1 got involved in the computer software industry. (As the joke goes, Lve known Ken since 
practically the day / was horn). I’ve seen a side of the emergence of this company that few 
I others have seen, 


In The Beginning — A Call F rom Ken 

In early 1 980, when Ken and Roberta launched the company that would be known as Sierra 
\ On-Line, Inc., I actually had had very little contact with them. Their home was the small town 

] of Simi in southern California, thousands of miles away from Illinois where I was going to 

^ school. The first I learned of the company was in May of that year when my oldest brother, 

\ Ken, gave me a call that would change my life. 

> I’d like to say that it was a momentous conversation, but that wasn’t the way it seemed at 
i the time. It went more along the lines of Ken on the phone saying '' Hey John, Roberta and / 

wrote this piece of softw are and the computer stores out here seem to sorta like it. If I send 
you a few' copies of it, would you sort of, you know' . . . show it around to the computer stores 
^ out there?'' 

X My was “(//?, sure . . . I guess" and a little later in the conversation I learned 

from Ken that software was something that ran on computers. At the end of the call, 1 
remember that I had no idea what the software did, what it looked like, or even what a 
■\ computer store was. I looked “computers” up in the Yellow Pages, found a list of what I 
assumed to be computer stores, and looked for Ken’s package to me in the mail. In doing 
% this, I unknowingly became the first-ever “distributor” of On-Line Systems (as Sierra was 

5 then know'n) products outside the state of California. 

The product was, as those familiar with the story know. Mystery House. I examined the 
; package as soon as 1 got it, and it claimed that what I would find inside was a computer game. 

^ To be honest, this surpri.sed me. Ken didn’t have a fun bone in his body back then (he was 

1 a chronic workaholic). I’d have expected it to be a database or a compiler (w'haterer those 

24 Hour Sierra Hint lanes 

Outside California I -900-370-KLUE / Inside 1-900-370-5113 Sierra New’s Magazine 

History of Sierra On-Line, Inc. 

were). Anyway, I took it to the Computerland in Downers Grove, 
Illinois the next day. Tlie rest (for me at least), was history. 

Wherever I visited a computer store, be it Peoria, Illinois or 
New Orleans, Louisiana, the game was a hit. Never mind that I 
had to hand the game disk to the retailer I was trying to “sell” the 
game to because 1 didn’t know how to boot a game disk from 
BASIC. I always walked out of the store with an order. It seemed 
that Roberta and Ken had written a game that all those Apple 
owners out there (of which we knew there were at least 50,000) 
definitely wanted to play. 

Software Capital of the World - 

Around Christmas of 1980, Ken invited me to join Roberta and 
him in a little town where he had moved. I loaded up my Pinto 
station wagon for the ride. I arrived about the 12th of December 
as On-Line Systems Employee Number (MKU. 

It didn’t seem like a good move at the time. I earned more in a 
month distributing Ken’s games than 1 would in my first year as a 

company employee. Also, the company was based out of 

this itty bitty little town called Coarsegold, California. 

Our facility was a cramped 10x10 room. 

It was pretty dismal and definitely not high-tech (a 
word I learned much later). It was not an auspicious 
beginning for the company that would become the 
town's — and the county’s — biggest employer. 

From the first few years, all 1 can remember of the 
company is its steady growth. We went from one 
employee (yours truly) to two, to ten, and so on. We even 
hired a real computer programmer after about six months 
(Warren Schwader, who's still with the company) and a 
few “customer support” people to help us handle the 
volume of calls we got for adventure game hints each 

As our facility got more professional, we moved to 
automated equipment. At first “automated” meant that we 

two “state-of-the-art” dual disk drive Apple II systems. This cut 
our duplication time to under 5 minutes per disk, and we were 
finally able to keep up with demand for our products. 

The Early Success 

We were all excited that the business was booming. Our success 
at the office of course meant some rewards at home too. 

There was the day that Ken bought the first desks and chairs 
for the company, and 1 got to take my dining room table home. 
Ken never did take his bar stools and floor lamps home, but he 
owned the place. 

When we made the “big switch” from TVs to computer 
monitors at the office and stopped using portable TVs, I watched 
television at my house for the first time in years. 1 remember that 
some people at the office didn’t think the move to computer 
“monitors” was such a good idea. 

I even remember the giddy and giggly party Ken had the day 
we hired our twenty sixth employee (the last company Ken had 
worked for had only employed 25). It had a “cowboy” theme, and 
we all wore cowboy hats (which isn't at all out of place in our 

Some early Sierra staff members in a relaxed moment circa I9S1. SCI system co-develoner 


Jeff Stephenson is third from the left, and a very youn^ John Williams is on the far rif^h 

started using something called “Seal A Meal” (a kitchen 

appliance that melted plastic ha^s closed) instead of putting our small town). We invited the whole industry and everyone came, 
disks in Zip-Lock baggies. Inside of a year, we had no less than The area only had about 15 hotel rooms then, so much of the 

Summer 1990 

24 HcMir Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6H3-H9H9 Orders I -SOO-326-6654 

Pa^e 7 

I9H4 1 


-Macintosh 5 1 2K released 
-Sierra releases Knife's \ 

Quest /, its first 3-D ^ 

Animated Adventure Game 

-IBM PC AT released ^ 


-Apple lie released ■ 

-Sierra wins Family ' 

Computing Magazine’s ^ 

Critic's Choice Award for 
Hrs Quest for Tires \ 

November J 

-landy 1 ()()() released 

1985 1 


-King's Quest 11 released ^ 


-Atari releases the 520ST 
-Sierra moves headquarters i 

from Golden Oak Drive to 
the Sierra Professional i 


-Commodore releases the > 


-Sierra wins Family 
Computing Magazine's 
Critic's Choice Award for 
Fuzzy womp \ 

1986 I 

September 1 

-IBM PC XT/286 released 
-Atari releases the 1040ST ^ 

April j 

-Apple releases the enhanced 
Macintosh 5 1 2K ^ 


-Apple IIGS released j 

November ^ 

-King^s Quest III ships ; 

1987 i 

April i 

-IBM PS/2 line introduced f 

(including the PS/2 Model ? 

70/386) 'i 

-Atari begins shipping 
MEGA computers A 

-Sierra wins Software ^ 

Publishers Association 
award for Leisure Suit | 

Larry in the iMnd of the ) 

Lounge Lizards i 

-Sierra wins Softsel Hot ’ 

List Flottest Prcxluct Award > 

for King^s Quest III \ 

industry slept on the floor of my living room that night. Others stayed at one of the many 
“programmer houses” Ken had bought to house company employees, and a few even slept in 
their old campers and Volkswagen vans (it was a very different industry then). A whole bunch 
of “the industry” even spent the weekend with us, going to nearby Yosemitc (National Park], 
and doing some early water skiing on local Bass Lake. 

For a while, it seemed that the world was our oyster and that, as hard as we tried, we just 
couldn't do anything wrong. Sure, we had a few games that didn’t sell the way we wanted 
them to (one of our games called Theology had ended up selling less than 100 copies) and we 
also had some legal hassles (because of copyright issues we had to rename our first word 
processor from Superscript, to SuperScrihe. and finally to ScreenWriter), but in general, 
business was great. Our competitors were our friends (there was plenty of business for all). 
The computer companies loved us, and the public just couldn't seem to get enough of our 

Our First Lawsuit 

Somewhere around 1982, the company hit its first rough spot. We were like a five-year-old 
on our first day of school. It seemed that the fun was over . . . now wc had a lot to learn. 

Around that time, we met our first bully. It was the big kid on the block. Atari. We made 
the mistake ofselling a game that lookeda whole lot like one of ihc'ws ( ours was a truly original 
and fun game called Gobbler, theirs a virtually unknown game called “Pai " .something or 

We were young and sort of foolish, and we thought we could take on this big company. 
Unfortunately, Atari had lawyers (about ten of them) and we didn't. Atari sued us for 
trademark infringement, counterfeiting, copyright violation and everything else they could 
think of 

Along with the “preliminary injunction” that the Atari lawyers sought, they also had gotten 
a judge to .send Federal Marshalls up to Sierra to confiscate our “counterfeiting machines” 
(which meant any computer we had on the premises). Not knowing we could go to jail for it, 
we hid the computers in the trunks of our cars. The loss of revenue a.ssociated with having our 
computer equipment confiscated was meant to cut off all our revenue. However, our heavy 
legal fees might well have done the job themselves. 

When it went to court, it was an intere.sting situation. We were young, upstart hackers facing 
one of the pinstriped legal teams in the nation. When 1 look back at the time, I realize 
that we didn't eventually “win” the Atari case, we (computer hackers) were just such a new 
phenomenon that we literally confused both our opposing coun.sel and the courts into 

The graphics in Sierra's first game offering. 
"Mystery House" , look crude in com- 
parison to UKiay's products, hut the whole 
concept of text + graphics w as pretty revolu- 
tionary in 19H0! 

Ken and Roberta attend the 1 989 Softw are 
Puhlisher.s' Association Awards Banquet 
and walk off w ith the "Best Adventure or 
Fantasy Role-Playing Game" award for 
King's Quest iV. 


Page H 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California ! -900-370- KLUE / !n.side I -900-370-5 1 ! 3 

Sierra News Magazine 

Rather than go into the case and the various arguments, this 
piece of the trial proceedings, where an Atari Lawyer tries to get 
Ken to produce the initial design documents on our game, just 
about says it all . . . 

ATARI LAWYER (to Ken): Lsnt it a fact that typically 
the programmer who designs these games at least produces 
a flow chart then writes out the source code manually prior 
to punching it in? 

KEN: No. 

ATARI LAWYER (trying to be sarcastic): You mean 
they simply sit down at the keyboard and write the pro- 

KEN: My programmers are too lazy to make any sort of a 
flow chart. In most cases, they don't even know where 
they're going when they start a program. They just try to 
get a routine working then put in a background, and from 
that they usually move toward some game. 

Exchanges like this, along with the fact that our programmers 
couldn’t even find their source code or other initial programming 
code (they didn't label their disks and there was no such thing as 
a "harddisk" then), combined into a favorable verdict. The judge 
declared that there wasn't enough evidence around for Atari to 
make any sort of claim to anything. I think he was just hopelessly 
confused by it all . . . 

If Atari had won this legal battle, the whole company would 
likely have been lost to them, and the company known as Sierra 
wouldn't exist today. Instead, the action makes a great story, and 
resulted in one of the biggest collector's items in the lore of the 
company — it's a baseball-style 3/4 length sleeved tee-shirt with 
the simple inscription ‘•‘On-Line: I, Atari: O.” 

Eventually, of course, Ken voluntarily overturned the Atari vs. 
On-Line Systems verdict, acknowledging that Atari did in fact 
have an “intellectual copyright" to the design of this computer 
game. It was the first legal decision over whether one computer 
company could “own" a computer design (at least if they could 
own a screen that had a little guy in a maze munching dots with 
things chasing him) and it could have served as a legal precedent 

in the numerous “look and feel" lawsuits currently running around 
the industry. 

Instead, it is virtually ignored by the legal community — which 
is probably just as well. 

For those who are interested, this period of Sierra's history is 
very well chronicled in a boc^k called Hackers by a guy named 
Steve Levy. (Steve actually lived in my house when he wrote the 
book). I'm a little embarrassed by what's written in it, to be quite 
honest. It's sort of like when your Mom brings out your baby 
pictures to show to your friends (and proceeds to tell them how 
hard you were to potty train). We did a lot of just plain dumb stuff 
back then. We were lucky enough to grow out of most of it. Sierra 
was fun then (sort of like a fraternity or a summer camp) but we 
grew up before we knew it. 

Sierra Grows Up 

It was early 1982, and Sierra couldn't keep up with the demand 
for its products. We were growing out of our office space quicker 
than we could find new space (there was less than 5, ()()() feet of 
office space in the whole town then). Our sales were often held 
back because we couldn't afford enough raw materials to build 
product. Just as we were sure that the company couldn't take any 
more growth, along came the big company — IBM. We had to 
grow, and we needed money to do it. 

We learned the meaning of the word “venture capital" that year. 
No one here at the office ever quite figured out how Ken did it, 
but he made a deal with financial wizard Jacqui Morby of pres- 
tigious TA Associates of Boston, and took in a few million bucks 
in venture capital money for a comparatively small piece of the 

This wasn't a “sale" of the company by any means. When we 
were given the money, it was made very clear that they expected 
us to put every cent of it back into Sierra. We needed to upgrade 
management (the average age of a manager then was probably 
less than 25). We needed to get a better manufacturing facility. We 
especially needed better marketing and better R&D (Research 
and Development). 

Brielly put, along with the taking of 
venture capital came the “growing up 
process." The computer industry at that 
time was looking at better than a 3(K)% 
compounded growth annually, and the 
projections were even better. 

A Computer in Every 

At the time Sierra took its first venture 
capital, the idea of a computer in every 
home was not just a goal or dream for 
those of us in the business, it was the 
actual sales forecast for the industry. 
Apple introduced the portable and sleek 
Apple He. Commodore had the VIC -20 
and the industry leading ComnKxlore 64, 
Atari had the Atari 400 and SOO. Texas 
Instruments looked like it might take 
over the market with its 7799, and even 
Coleco (makers of the astoundingly 

Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6S3-K9S9 Orders I -SOO-326-6654 

Page 9 


-Sierra wins Computer | 

Software Service “The i 

Movers Award ’ for Donald ^ 

Duck's Playf^round 


-Sierra moves from Sierra 
Pn)fessional Building to current 
headquarters at 40033 Sierra 
Way in CXikhurst, CA 

-Apple releases Macintosh IIx 
-Apple IIc+ released 
-New configuration for 
Macintosh SE released 
-Sierra goes PUBLIC! 
-Sierra wins top honors in 
five categories at the 1 1th 
anual presentation of the 
Golden Oak Awards: 

Best of Electronic Video: 

Sien a On-Line Video Catalog \SS 
Best of Print: 

Manhunter: New York Poster 


Space Piston Comic Book 
(f rom Space Quest II packa\^e) 
Poster/Four Color: 
Manhunter: New York Poster 
Sales Promotion, A/V or 
Electronic Sale t^esentation: 
Sien a On-Line Video Catalog 'HH 
-Sierra wins three Computer 
Entertainer Award of 

Best Adventure/Fantasy 
(with graphics): 

Manhunter: New York 
Best Educational Program: 
Mixed-Up Mother Goose 
Exceptional Achievement in 
(iiraphics and Sound: 

Kings Quest IV 



-Apple releases Macintosh 

-Sierra wins Computer Gaming 
World’s Special Award for 
Achievement in Sound for 
Space Quest m 

-Apple releases 
Macintosh CX 

-IBM PS/2 Model 70/486 

-Sierra ends '89 with 240 

popular ColecoVision game machine) 
was taken seriously with tape drive 
based Coleco Adam. 

A stampede of major companies 
from Parker Brothers and Mattel to 
Texas Instruments and Apple, invested 
hundreds of millions of dollars to 
launch computers that were pirsitioned 
as “the TV’s, stereos and appliances of 
the future.” 

...And Reality Comes 
Crashing In 

Sierra, with its eager new “Fortune 
5(X)” style management team and its 
wealth of venture capital, managed to 
invest in each and every one of these 
ill-fated computers. We made software 
products on cassette for the Vic-20 and 
the Atari 400, cartridges for the Coleco 
Adam and the Commodore 64, we even 
spent hundreds of thousands of dollars 
developing product for the Texas In- 
struments TI99, which wasn’t even out 
of development yet when the “con- 
sumer computer market” collapse hap- 
pened at the end of 1984. 

By the end of the year, we were in a 
very tight jam. We had tens of 
thousands of game cartridges for can- 
celled and bankrupt computers like the 
VIC-20 and the Coleco Adam. We had 
cassette programs for the VIC-20 and 
the Atari 400 and HOO that we couldn’t 
sell. All told, it was a few million dol- 
lars worth of inventory that we might 
be able to sell for 3 cents on the dollar. 

To add insult to injury, at the time it 
looked like our biggest losses were going to come from the library of software we had 
developed for IBM’s disastrous PCjr computer. This computer, which was promi.sed as IBM’s 
entry level system for every home, had been a major disappointment for the company. Its 
unique graphics resolution of 16 colors, (not the standard 4 color CGA ojfered then on the 
IBM PCXT) made it incompatible with other MS-DOS based IB Ms and compatibles, and the 
market for games on the IBM PC was worse than bad then anyway. We felt like the only 
company in history that had bet on IBM and lost. 

Our investment in Apple’s new flagship Macintosh was also a bad decision for the time. 
The computer was labelled “the computer for the rest of us.” Although it sold more than 50,0(X) 
units in its first 100 days of release, it had not become a good market for computer games. 
“The rest of us,” it seemed, didn’t like the look of computer games on a black and white screen. 

We were broke, in debt, and out of luck. Through a massive layoff, we went from over 1 30 
employees to less than 35 in a matter of weeks. Our board of directors (made up of mostly the 
venture capitalists that had given us money in the first place) brought in a “hatchet man” to 
help us wind down the company, dispose of its assets, and negotiate its way out of leases and 
overdue debts.* 

It looked like the party was completely over, when a most unlikely company saved Sierra 
in its hour of need. 

As the years went hy we continued to diversify our product 
line, hilt developed fewer arcade games ana more JD Graphic 
Adventures. The production of hi nt hooks was a major step, 
and not one everybody wanted to take. 

* This "hatchet man" was Bruce Davis, now President of MEDIAGENIC (formerly Activision). MEDIAGENIC is now one of the 
industry's largest publishers of computer and video games. 

Page 10 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I -900-370-KLUE I Inside 1-900-370-51 13 

Sierra News Magazine 

Radio Shack to the Rescue(?) 

From my discussions over the years with Srini Vasan**, who 
was a software buyer for Tandy Corporation at the time, I gathered 
that Tandy's decision to make its first MS-DOS compatible was 
made sometime after the announcement of the PCjr, but before its 
tragic demise. Noting immediately that the PCjr lacked refine- 
ment, Tandy's goal had been to “improve and refine the design of 
IBM's PCjr.'' Within a few months it became known as “What the 
IBM PCjr should have been." 

Tandy Corporation, which had developed the industry-pioneer- 
ing, but now somewhat embarrassing, TRS-80 personal computer, 
suddenly had themselves a major success story in the Tandy KXH) 
computer. With its quality 16 color graphics, its ^ voice music and 
its IBM and IBM PCjr compatibility, it quickly became the in- 
dustry leader in home computing. 

The products that Sierra had originally designed for the defunct 
PCjr had a whole new market. Better than 8000 Radio Shack and 
I’andy Computer centers were new outlets for Sierra's MS-DOS 
software. Sieira's Kini*\s Quest / adventure game, HomeWord 
word prcK'essor, and its line of MS-DOS based arcade games 
quickly became popular with Tandy computer owners, and with 
this rise in popularity came the recovery of Sierra. 

Good Times Return . . . 

The success of Tandy was a precursor to the success of MS- 
DOS as a standard for the home (as opposed to business) market. 
Other MS-DOS computers were relea.sed at a price range accept- 
able to home u.sers. The addition of EGA to MS-DOS machines 
made them acceptable from a graphics standpoint. Other com- 
puters targeted towards the home were introduced by Atari and 
Commodore. The Atari ST and the Amiga were quickly added to 
the list of hardware platforms supported. 

Sierra's line of products grew to include Space Quest, Police 
Quest, and Leisure Suit Larry. These games, and their sequels, 
were well received by computer audiences. This success helped 
an older, wi.ser, and somewhat battle-scarred Sierra to grow back 
into a leadership position. 

By the middle of 19X7, Sierra was back in gcx)d shape. Al- 
though the company had bailed out of the then lucrative Com- 
modore-64 software market a little early, our products for MS- 
DOS based home computers had quickly become the premium 
products in the marketplace. MS-DOS was rapidly becoming the 
home computing standard. 

Snni i\ now Sitrrti'.s Director oj International Sales and a utliied rneniher of oar 
nianai’ement team 

Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

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Pa^e 1 1 

We also were growing so fast that we 
again needed additional capital for 
growth. As we had spent all of the venture 
capital we thought we were going to get, 
the decision was made to take the com- 
pany public. We h(H)ked up with a great 
investment banking group, tore through 
the mounds of legal paperwork and red 
tape that the SEC had managed to invent 
over the last century, and wrote up our 
“prospectus'' which was basically a full 
explanation of our business. Finally, it 
seemed, we were ready to become a 
publicly traded software company. 

We set the magic date that we would 
offer our stock for the first time. It seemed 
like a great date — before Christmas {when the company does its 
hii*}^est sales of the year) but after our new products were released 
for the year. This would be the time that Sierra looked its best and 
full of potential. 

. . . And The Stock Market Crashes 

Our magic date, it turned out, was the one now known as “Black 
Monday." The day the U.S. stock market took its biggest dive since 
the great depression. We, of course, had to cancel our initial stock 
offering as the investment bankers we had worked with on the deal 
had been dealt a deathblow. The stock market would not recover 
to the point where there could be another successful offering for 
.some time to come. It was costly, confusing and heartbreaking for 
Sierra. On a personal level, it might equate to failing your final 
exams in your senior year. {Editor's Note: In October of !9HH, one 
year after "Black Monday," Sierra did finally go public, at $9.00 
a share. As of this writing. Sierra stock is up to $19 3/4, and can 
be found on the NASDAQ Exchange under "Sier " ). 

We didn't know it at the time, of course, but there was a silver 
lining for Sierra in all this. When E.F. Hutton talked, we would no 
longer have to listen, and our growth continued in spite of the 
failed offering. 

Sales continued to grow, and Sierra had a couple of cards up 
its sleeve that would make it an even a better investment during a 
stock offering some time in the future. 

King’s Quest IV and the SCI Standard 

Since the beginning of Sierra’s history. Sierra has always had 
a programming language of its own with which we built our 
computer games. In the very beginning, it was the first of many 
incarnations of AGL (Adventure Game Language), which created 
our very early hits like Mystery House and Wizard & the Princess. 
Later, a dozen different versions of AGl (Adventure Game Inter- 
preter) helped us launch the King's Quest, Police Quest, Space 
Quest, and the incomparable Leisure Suit Larry series." 

In the spring of 1988, this chain of proprietary languages got 
one link longer with the development of the Sierra Creative 
Interpreter (or SCI for short). This new language had better 
graphics and animation capabilities than AGl, and had more to 
offer in terms of flexibility for programmers doing code for parsers 
and pointing devices. This meant that games programmed in SCI 

would require a lot more memory and a 
fairly fast priKCssor — many PCs might 
have a hard time running them. This wor- 
ried us a little, but we thought we had a 

King's Quest IV was Sierra's first SCI 
release, and it was a beauty. The graphics 
were breathtaking, the animation was far 
superior to the AGl games, and SCI would 
allow us to include a fully orchestrated 
film-score quality soundtrack, which we 
did, although it was a big gamble. The 
game was previewed at the June 1988 
Computer Electronics Show, where we 
erected a mini theater complete with a 46" 
color monitor, a stereo system, an IBM 386 
computer, and a Roland MT-32. The shows were invitation only 
(no competitors allowed), and took place every couple of hours. 
During one demo ( which basically consisted of the game's opening 
cartoon), as King Graham fell to the ground, and the music 
swelled dramatically, a woman who was watching began to cry. I 
feel bad even saying it, but it was then that we knew we had a 

To avoid excluding users with low-end machines, we simul- 
taneously released an AGl version which, frankly, paled by com- 
parison. That fact wasn't lost on the public, who were already a 
step ahead, having seen the need to upgrade their systems for more 
practical reasons. The average prcxluctivity program was demand- 
ing as much from a computer as an SCI game, more in some cases. 
The SCI version King's Quest IV turned out to be just the kind 
of progress users were looking for from us. (The AGl version, for 
those who are interested, is still available directly from Sierra, but 
it's the SCI version you'll find on the shelf at your local software 
store). That little experiment taught us a very important lesson: 
never underestimate the awareness of our users. You're moving 
ahead, and so are we. 

With the astounding success of Roberta's King's Quest IV, it 
seemed only natural that Sierra’s other designers would latch on 
to SCI. Police Quest //, Leisure Suit Larry II and Space Quest III 
weren’t far behind, and each enjoyed its own version of KQ !V\ 
prosperity. Our u.sers’ response to the graphics, animation and 
sound in Sierra’s recent releases has been .so overwhelming that 
we’re currently in the process of converting some of your old 
favorites to the SCI format. 

In keeping with Sierra’s tradition of “looking ahead," our 
Research and Development staff is, at this very moment, looking 
ahead to the next big techno-wave of the future: CD-ROM. It's 
hard enough to believe that we’ve gone from a game on one floppy 
to games that barely fit on ten floppies, but in a couple of years 
we could be looking at same 10 disk games on one little 
Compact Disc. 

Yep, a lot has happened in ten years — .sometimes it seems like 
just last week 1 drove into Coarsegold, other times it .seems like 
I’ve been here forever. Either way, it’s been a heck of a decade, 
and I think we can all look forward to another one that’s at least 
as interesting. 1 don’t have any inside info for you on Sierra’s plans 
for the '90s, but you might want to check out Ken’s article, page 
4, and keep watching the Sierra NewsMagazine for late 
breaking stories. ^4^ 

Some pnhliu't.s from recent year.^ Dr their 
portrait with the ori ^^inal Sierra logo, me world 
famous Halfdome in nearln Yosemite National Park 

Page 12 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I -900-370-KLUE / Inside I -900-370-5 1 1 3 

Sierra News Magazine 

Throughout most of this 
magaziney we'll be con- 
centrating on what Sierra 
has accomplished in the last 
10 years. Looking back has 
been fun in a self-indulgent 
sort of wayy but now / think 
it's time to look ahead. Where 
will Sierra be in ten years? 
What products will we offer? 

. . . What Lies 


Projections for the Coming Decade 

By John Williams 

■ ell, 10 years is an awfully long time, and any attempt to guess where 
computers will be will likely be wrong. But it’s okay to look at “logical 
extensions” of what’s going on today, both in the industry and in the 
research and development labs here at Sierra. As you might imagine, 
1 spend a lot of time talking to the major players in the computer 
hardware industry, so this article will give you Just a glimpse at what’s 
going on in research and development at Sierra and in the Silicon Valley. The 
following “guesses” at what the next decade will bring are based partially on 
facts, but are mostly provided for your enjoyment. 

Multimedia: Graphics and Sound 

If you’re an IBM owner that has recently upgraded to VGA, an Amiga owner, 
or one of those lucky Mac owners with a color screen, you already know that 
better computer graphics make for better computer games and applications. But 
“graphics” are just part of the equation in the “user interface.” There’s also 
animation (screen movement), soundtrack, and the way that the computer com- 
municates with you (text, icons, speech synthesis, etc). 

In the last year, the hot new buzzword for the industry has been “multimedia” 
and it looks to be the future of computing. Multimedia combines television 
quality graphics, voice output, stereo soundtracks, quick screen animation and 
an intuitive user interface into one package. Everyone from Apple and IBM to 
Phillips and Sony seems to be jumping on the multimedia bandwagon, and 
multimedia machines and applications are slated for mass distribution as early as 
next Christmas. It’s no big secret that Sierra is working on a multimedia version 
of King’s Quest V for these new machines, and has plans for other multimedia 
products in the future. 

While there are many differing views of what multimedia will mean, from 
Apple computers much publicized “Knowledge Navigator” to the multimedia 
“VCR” style prcxiuct being championed by AIM (a division of North American 
Phillips). Everyone seems to agree though, that television quality pictures, true 
stereo and voice output, and ease-of-use and quick response from the computer 
will be the main components. Fhe surprise is that, for the most part, hardware 
manufacturers seem to be delivering on the promise. 

In September, Sierra plans to introduce it’s own hardware package that will 
help current MS-DOS users upgrade their computers to Multimedia status (all 
the components are currently available). Other publishers and manufacturers will 
probably follow suit. Multimedia is not }us{ a guess, it’s a reality. 

Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6H3-H9H9 Orders 1-800-326-6654 

Pa^e 13 

CDs Solve the Stora^’e Problem 

Not so long ago» few home computer 
owners would have imagined that they 
could outgrow their 20 meg hard disk. 
Today, people seem to run out of room on 
their 40mcg, and even 80meg hard disks 
every time they try to load a new Sierra 
game (most of which require Just over / 
mef> of storage each). 1'his has us very 
concerned about how users will feel when 
they see our upcoming VGA King's Quest 
V — it looks like it's going to weigh in at 
just over !0 meg! 

The answer to the storage question, at 
least for the next few years, seems to be the 
CD. Anyone who has visited a record store 
over the last few years is already familiar 
with these bright and shiny disks. They've 
virtually taken over the market for 
prerecorded music (in fact, it's hard to find 
a record in most record stores” anymore). 
For computer owners and software pub- 
lishers, the introduction of CD will be even 
more significant; CDs hold the equivalent 
of literally hundreds of floppy diskettes, 
can be transported and stored easily, and 
they're virtually indestructible. 

For publishers, CDs represent a wel- 
come solution to the problem of how to 
deliver increasingly larger software 
products to the public. For instance, the 
VGA version of Space Quest IV currently 
looks like it would have to ship on about 
40 low density 5 1/4" IBM diskettes. It 
quite literally would not fit in our current 
box. As it stands, it looks like we will ship 
it instead on twelve 1. 2 meg (High Den- 
sity) diskettes, which is still a lot of hassle 
both for us and for you. Imagine how much 
easier it will be for us to duplicate, package 
and ship (and for you to have to deal with) 
only one small compact disc. 

CDs are just beginning to make serious 
headway on computers, but the evolution 
of the media is already well underway. 
Tandy has already announced a future ship 
date for their THOR technology, a CD that 
will not only let you read data (current CD 
technology is read-only) but also write to 
the CD. This is already fantastic, but the 
price makes it even better; $500 is the 
promised price, for a 5(X) meg CD drive - 
that’s just one dollar per megabyte. That’s 
the best example I can think of to show the 
promise that CDs have of being faster, 
cheaper, and more convenient than cur- 
rently available diskette and hard disk 
storage techniques. 

Communications and Connectivity 

In a recent address to the collective 
computer hardware and software industry, 
industry visionary (and Apple and Next 
computer founder) Steven Jobs called the 
I990's “the decade of interpersonal com- 
puting". When he said it. Jobs was actually 
referring to the way that computer net- 
works would change the way companies 
did their computing in ihe coming decade. 
Formal and informal “work groups" form- 
ing within a computeri/cd network to help 
the corporation get the job done. The 
beginning of a new way for the corporate 
world to communicate. 

I think Steve Jobs was thinking too 

I agree that “interpersonal computing” 
— the idea that the individual computer 
owner will soon find himself acting as part 
of a bigger connected computer com- 
munity — is the next step in the evolution 
of personal computing. But I disagree with 
Jobs vision of the company office as the 
birthplace of this technology. In fact, as 
every avid user of CompuServe, GEnie or 
Prodigy knows, interpersonal computing 
is already a reality. 

Interpersonal computing is alive and 
well and living on BBS's and on-line ser- 
vices all over North America and Europe. 
From the various sysops of FIDOnel that 
have formed a task- force to keep data 
moving across the country, to the “infor- 
mal work group" of hint givers and hint 
askers I see crop up to solve each new 
Sierra adventure game as it hits the retail 
shelves, this new breed of interaction be- 

tween computers and computer users 
seems to be more than just a passing fad. 

Another aspect of personal computing 
that will grow and prosper in the coming 
decade include multi-player computer 
games. If you can imagine a Leisure Suit 
Larry game where every character you see 
is controlled by a real person, or a Leisure 
Suit Larry sequel where every Lounge 
Li/ard at the Disco represents a potential 
new friend, you begin to see just one of the 
uses Sierra has planned for interactive 
computer gaming. Sierra is already hiud at 
work on ways to exploit these new tech- 
nologies. Recent rumorsof a modem based 
Leisure Suit Larry games do, in fact, have 
a grain of truth in them. 

Other potential markets for multi- 
player computer games include classr(X)m 
simulations where all the students par- 
ticipate, and cross country game shows 
where everyone on-line has a shot at win- 
ning the grand prize. The possibilities are 
practically endless. 

Now that we’ve followed the threads of 
today’s technology to their logical con- 
clusions, we can only sit back and watch it 
all happen. It’s hard to imagine that in 
another lO years we’ll be bringing you the 
2()th Anniversary issue of Sierra News 
Magazine. In that issue I expect to look 
back on this one and laugh about how 
different things are from what we all 
thought they’d be — much the way I laugh 
today at how we saw the future of the 
industry in 1 980. I hope you \ook forward 
to that day as much as I do. 

Page 14 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California 1 -900-370-KLUE / Inside 1-900-370-5113 

Sierra News Magazine 

Asteroids are hurtling by. Enemy photons are de- 
stroying the rear deflectors. Engines strain as they 
reach critical mass. Suddenly you hit the retros, loop 
around, and fire with everything you've got. 

And what kind of awesome, breath-taking music 
is your computer playing? "Bleep, bop, beep." Pretty weak, eh? 

Well listen up. Because now there's the Ad Lib Music Card. 

It's the digital music synthesizer that's conquering the final frontier 
of truly realistic game playing-totally ear-blasting sound. 

Confront the dark overlord, and Ad Lib's 11-piece orchestra 
will back you up with gutsy, heart-swelling music. And if you meet 

an untimely death, rest assured that Ad Lib's funeral dirge will bring 
tears to the eyes of your loved ones. 

In fact, the Ad Lib sound is so hot, major game developers are 
now designing dozens of new adventures with special soundtracks 
just for the Ad Lib Music Card. 

Call us at 1-800-463-2686 for the name of your nearest 
dealer, for more information, and for the ever-growing list 
of major game titles with spectacular Ad Lib soundtracks. 

Add the missing dimension to your games with the 
Ad Lib Music Card. From a solo to a symphony, Ad Lib's 
music makes the adventure come alive. a jt 


Ad Lib Inc., 50 Staniford Street, Suite 800, Boston, MA 02114. 1 - 800 - 463-2686 in U.S. or Canada. 1 - 418 - 529-9676 International. Fax: 1 - 418 - 529 - 1159 . 



Here are just some of the 
hottest new computer games 
designed for use with the 
Ad Lib Music Card; 

Sierra's Space Quest III Electronic Arts' 
The Pirates of Pestulon Kings of the Beach 

Epyx's Omnicron 



Red Storm Rising 

System requirements; IBM PC, XT, AT, or compatible with 256K RAM, DOS 2.0 or higher, CGA, EGA, or monochrome graphics adaptor, and headset or external speaker 
® 1989 Ad Lib. Ad Lib is a registered trademark of Ad Lib Inc. IBM is a registered trademark of International Business Machines Corporation. 



Bill Davis 
Creative Director 

By Nancy Smithe 

B ill Davis, appointed Creative Director at Sierra On-Line in July 1 989, 
comes with an impressive record of achievements. After graduation 
with high honors from The Chouinard Art School with a BFA, he 
designed and directed or co-directed over 150 animated television commer- 
cials for clients, including McDonalds, Dole, Burger King, and Toyota. He 
has also done children's illustrations for Sesame Street, Childrens Television 
Workshop, The Electric Company, and MacMillan and Co. For the past 1 1 
years Bill was a Designerl Director for Kurtz and Friends, a top Los Angeles 
producer of animated commercials. While there Bill designed, animated and 
directed the short film, "Logo Interruptus," which was part of Annecy 89 
International Animation Festival in France. Bill was lead graphic artist for 
NBC studios and has designed and illustrated over 200 of the "More to Come" 
slides for The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson. Awards which Bill has 
won include an Emmy in 1978, three President's Awards from The Society of 
Illustrators of Los Angeles, tv\'o Mohias awards from the U.S. Television and 
Radio Commercials Festival, tw'o Silver Plaque awards fiom the Chicago 
International Film Festival, an IBA award, and a Gold Medal from the 
International Film and Television Festival of New York. 

In this issue we are premiering a new regular feature of the Sierra News 
Magazine, Interactive, a regular cartoon feature hy Bill Davis. The first 
cartoon of this series is on page 19. 

The list of awards you have won is impressive, including an 
Emmy. How did the winning project develop? 

At the lime I wiis on start’ at NBC in Los Angeles, in the Graphic Art 
I>epartment. The Art Director from a project called “NBC — ^The First 
Fifty Yeiirs” came to our clepiirtmeni instead of going to an outside film 
company, They wanted to use someixxly inhouse. I don’t know if that 
was for budget reasons or if they just had a feeling of team spirit. We 
didn’t ask why, we Just look it iind ran with it. I storyboiirded it, iuid 
created all the artwork with other designers 
in the department. I had never really 
worked willi lUtimalion prior to that lime 
and we didn’t have the facilities to physi- 
cally prixluce it, so I worked with an 
outside luiimalion producer, We l(X)k it to 
Bill Melendez, famous for the “Pe<uiuts” 
animated TV specials, and they helped 
me physically paxiuce it. They had the 
expertise to fill out the exposure sheets 
properly and set up the cells so the camera 
man would understand it. This was my 
first animation project and I really needed 
their technical abilities. 

You spent years designing and direct- 
ing animated television commercials. 

Tell me about your part? 

There is a lot of collaboration in film 
with a lot of different people. That was the 
hardest thing for me to get used to initially 
because I came from an illustration back- 
ground where I did the whole thing. The 
owner of the studio where I worked also 
directed, and we would kick things back 
and forth. And there was another designer 
there that we kicked ideas around with. 

Once I had designed a commercial — this 
included storyboarding, designing the 
characters, laying out the backgrounds 
and character action — I would “hand it 
out” to the animators, and give them all 
necessary direction. Animators are to the 
animation industry what actors are to the 
live action film industry, They take the 
^layouts” and run with them. Once in a 
while you disagree with the direction they 
run in, but most of the time it’s a plus. The 
project is ^^plussed” through the entire 
effort. It’s a true team effort. 

Your commercials are often very 
humorous. Did you get to develop the 

Yes, that is basically my work. We 
would get an agency storyboard, and they 
were usually pretty dry — ^just kind of an outline of what they 
wanted. Then I would work on it and turn it into a “production 
storyboard,” a ^‘working” story board. I would write a hundred 
gags, and in some situations present all the gags to the agency 
letting them take their pick. Then we’d fight back and forth over 
which were the better gags. Maybe only 3-5 gags out of the 
hundred would make it into the final story board. 

Interactive (facing page), a cartoon by Bill Davis, is a new regular 
feature of the Sierra News Magazine premiering in this issue. 

So many times the title of “director” means getting “kicked 
upstairs” into administration and away from creation. You 
were able to be a director and still be creative. 

Yes. I think you might be confusing the pr(xlucer with the 
director. Anyway, that was the wonderful thing about the small 
studio I worked with and what I liked 
about commercials. Since commercials 
deal with 60 or .30 second, or even 10 to 
1 5 second spots, you can end up doing ten 
or twenty films a year. So there is a short 
lime span per job. They range from six to 
ten weeks per project, so you can work on 
several projects a year with different 
stages of several different projects over- 
lapping each other. With that small studio 
I was able to design everything I worked 
on. That meant I designed the characters, 
I did the story board, I worked out the 
color and I actually “laid out” the action 
and background for each scene. I didn’t 
do each individual drawing. And like I 
said earlier I didn’t give actual “life” to 
the characters. That’s the realm of the 
animators. They actually give motion to 
the characters. And 1 would direct that 
motion. It’s relatively easy to direct in 
animation because you do a lot of the 
directing with your drawings. 

How do animators give the ”life” 
to the characters? 

Well, they think in terms of motion. 
They take multiple static drawings and 
create the illusion of motion. They under- 
stand motion, they analyze motion. The 
way a character walks or moves makes a 
big difference in how you perceive the 
personality of that character. 

Is there an equivalent to “Lights, 
Camera, Action,” a time when you 
photograph all the pieces into an end 

Yes, but that’s an animation camera 
man all by himself late at night, lonely, in 
a little dark room with just a few lights 
and his animation camera. Unlike the live 
action film camera man, he sits down and 
shoots one “cell” at a time based on ex- 
posure sheets. Every cell is annotated on 
a sheet of paper called an exposure sheet. 
This tells him what cell to shoot at what field size, and how many 
frames to shoot of that particular cell; it indicates camera trucks, 
background pans and many other pieces of technical information. 
The job is pretty much mapped out, and it’s a pretty tedious job 
for the camera man, who is usually shooting it at night when 
everybody else is home sleeping. But don’t get me wrong — there 
are good camera men and bad camera men. 


“So your first animated 
project won an 

“Right. That 
was thrilling.” 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California 1-900-370-KLUE / Inside I -900-370-5 II 3 

Page 18 

Sierra News Magazine 

How did you happen to get into doing animated cartoons? Did 
you always want to do it, or was it one of those ‘i started out 
to he something else” stories. 

No. From way back, as far back as I can remember, I always 
wanted to be an artist in some fomi. My earliest interest was 
animation. When I got into Art School and and became very 
“serious” I kind of abandoned that whole direction. I was going 
to be a painter for a long time. I still haven’t given up on the 
painting thing, I just don't depend on that for an income. I kind 
of got side-tracked into illustration. In art school I would go 
back and forth between advertising, package design and paint- 

“Computer game technology 
is going to enable us to make 
games more and more 
theatrical, more and more 
like real films ” 

ing. I finally ended up with illustration because I really wanted to 
draw andpaint,andadverlising and packagedesigntookyouaway 
from that. Painting really looked like a long shot, as far as making 
a living, and illustration was one of the last commercial majors in 
art school where you could really concentrate on drawing and 
painting. So I stuck with that. And I think if it hadn't been for the 
Emmy Award for that one project at NBC I probably would never 
have gotten back into the animation business. That got me a lot of 
notoriety and actually oneofthe animation production companies 
who had bid on the project — Kurtz and Friends — became my 
eventual employer in the animation industry. 

Johnny Magpie told me you grew up a “surfer punk” in LA, 
but he isn’t always accurate. Any comment? 

The term “surfer punk” was yet to be coined in those days. 
Surfing was my life from the age of 1 3 to 18. That whole lifestyle, 
at that time, had a great effect on how I perceive things today. The 
truth is I continued to surf up until the move to Sierra. It's 
something I’m really going to miss, cowabunga. 

Johnny Magpie also told me you were a painter for the old 
Laugh-ln show, and painted Goldie a bikini? 

This Johnny Magpie wouldn't happen to be . . . [the rest of this 
sentence was edited out — his guess is too close to our closely 
guarded secret of Johnny Magpie's identity, says the Editor].] was 
fresh out of art school, the new kid in the department. I was forced 
to paint hundreds of bikini clad starlets. It’s all kind of a blur. 

To come to Sierra you moved away from the city and into the 
mountains — a big change. What made you interested in doing 

I think Sierra On-Line. Although the country has been a dream 
for years. We tried to pull that off in the early 70's. My wife, my 
son and I moved to New Hampshire and I was free-lancing out of 
New York and Boston. That worked really well for several years 
then economics got tough. This was before FAX machines and 
Federal Express, and I realized I had to move back to a big city. I 
had worked at NBC prior to that, and they offered me my position 
back. So I went back to Los Angeles and kind of gave up on that 

dream, thinking, oh it’s not really possible to move out into the 
country and do the kind of work you do. I hoped it would be 
someday, maybe if communications kept going the way they were. 
Then 1 received the offer from Sierra. And not only was it an 
opportunity to move into the country, but, also, to take animation 
into this new, exciting direction. 

As Sierra’s first Creative Director, what “new and exciting 
directions” do you see opening up? 

I think Ken’s vision for Sierra is to move it more toward the 
film industry, interactive film, and I think his intention in creating 
this position was to bring someone from the film industry to Sierra. 
We are seeing film companies getting into the computer game 
industry and I think this is an indication of the direction the 
industry will be heading in the future. Computer game technology 
is going to enable us to make games more and more theatrical, 
more and more like real films, animated or live action. 

I’d like to ask you to “compare and” Sierra On-Line 
and films. First, how is computer video similar to the film 

They both have animation, and in some cases live action 
(although in computer video the live is digitized). Up to now 
computer animation has been limited by its hardware, but 1 
think every one is speculating that with the promise of CD 
technology coming to the industry memory is going to expand 

“Another major difference 
between the film industry 
and computer games is the 
interactivity present 

in the games 

The player controls 
the story line. That makes it 
different,that makes it 
very different.” 

and hardware is going to be available to extend the the limits of 
software, both the audio and the visual. Pictures and music take 
up the most space on disks, and that has kept us from doing things 
like speech. With a larger space to put down our sound and 
pictures we should be able to make our animation fuller (more 
lifelike), and have more music and add things like speech. 

The idea being that we wouldn’t be using a computer disk any 
more, but actually using a CD? 

That’s what we hear. 

Now, how is computer video different from the fdm industry? 

At this point it is different in that you have the memory on the 
floppies to deal with. In film you can shoot as much film as you 
want. And as long as you can get an audience to sit in the theater 
to watch it, timewise there are no limits. 

Page 20 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California 1 -900-370-KLUE / Inside 1-900-370-5113 

Sierra News Magazine 

Compared to the way you worked before — story boards and 
coding each picture with color — there is a change, isn’t there? 

Yes, but I think we want to try to implement that here. At Sierra 
projects are getting so large, and we are getting so many projects, 
we are concerned about losing quality. We 
are going to take some of the techniques that 
have been used in the film industry to manage 
gigantic feature projects and apply them 
here. 1 think we’ll gain in efficiency along the 
way also. It will enable many more people to 
work on a project, finish that project quickly, 
and not lose quality. With a story board you 
are able to visualize an entire project at the 
beginning and locate the pitfalls, the problem 
areas, ahead of time before anyone sits down 
at a computer to work on anything. We won’t 
have to trash large sections of a game that 
have been developed because they don’t work with another part 
of the game. We should be able to prevent those types of things 
from happening. 

Another major difference b>etween the film industry and com- 
puter games is the interactivity present in the games. In the film 
industry stories are linear. You plan a film from beginning to end 
and you control a viewer all the way along. It is a little bit more 

complex in a computer game because your players can stay in a 
room for any length of game, it is their choice, and they can go off 
in any direction they want to go. That makes it different, that makes 
it very different. The player controls the story line. 

What advice have you for a youngster 
wanting to do what you are doing? What 
kind of education or background would be 

Study art, study photography, study film 
and study literature. Writers like Dickens are 
wonderful for character development. So I 
would say literature, art, music, photography 
and filmmaking are all very important. 

Computers, perhaps? 

Computers. ..well, if people can’t learn to 
use computers, we are in trouble so 1 would 
say it is good to have some computer knowledge. You don’t need 
to be an expert, you don’t need to be a programmer. A computer 
is a tool, like a paint brush. 

1 think it is more important to get a strong background in art, 
music, photography, filmmaking, and literature. 


Study art, study 
study film and 
study literature.” 

For more on this topic, read Keeping Up With Jones, The Cinematic Process, on page 38. 

Easy Access to Lena’s Hint Database 

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customers on PC-UnIC, the online service for MS-DOS computer owners 

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• Download thousands of software files and programs to keep 
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Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Sendee (209) 6S3-S989 Orders I -800-326-6654 

Page 2 1 






Editors Note: Like those “Elvis sighted at weddini* of Hi {(foot and space alien" articles you've read in other computer magazines, the routines 
of Johnny Maf(pie should he taken with more than a few }(rains of salt and tonf(ue planted firmly in cheek. Sierra mana}(ement does not endorse 
(and only barely tolerates) the inclusion of this article in the Sierra News Magazine. 

By Johnny Magpie 

Despite the semi-libelous “dis- 
claimer" repeatedly placed at the 
beginning of this column, or maybe because 
of it, this reporter thought he’d begin his 
pericxlic tirade in print with an “I told you 
so" update from the last column. In that 
colurrin, I printed the much denied rumor 
that “King Graham would star in Kings 
Quest K" This rumor is completely true. 

Roberta admits that (iraham's the 
one. Despite Roberta Williams tight little 
lips and the strong arm security wall around 
the Kings Quest V development project, this 
reporter was the first to announce that King 
Graham was definitely going to be the star 
of this eagerly awaited sequel. 

Although she is still saying she won’t say 
anything about the new project, Roberta 
confirmed this fact in not one, but two 
sources. Roberta’s first big slip up came with 
an outrageously rare message on Prodigy’s 
Adventure (Jame board which many 
thought was from an imposter. This reporter, 
through a little research, confirmed the 
validity of this when the Prodigy ID number 
used turned out to belong to none other than 
Ken Williams himself. 

The second source of the King’s confir- 
mation came from Japan, where Roberta 
spilled the beans to reporters from 
Login Magazine (Japan’s top computer 
magazine). Perhaps Berta thought she was 
too far from home for news of King's Quest 
V to make it back, because her indiscre- 

tions supplied the Magpie with his next big 
news on King's Quest V. 

Remember that you heard it here first 
people — King's Quest V is being 
developed for three different computer 
formats at the same time. That’s right, 
Roberta’s development group has three 
completely different machine versions of the 
prcxiuct underway. Word is, Roberta brought 
in an amazingly creative artist from a 
popular NBC television show to manage the 
graphics and animation development. (No, 
the artist is not Bill Davis who did the 
graphics for Johnny Carson.) Three com- 
pletely different sets of graphics are being 
produced. Bigger news still is that the first 
graphic from King's Quest V will be 
found in the June 1990 issue of Com- 
pute! Magazine. MORE ON THIS 

Also true, though harder to believe, is 
the silly rumor that the Two guys from 
Andromeda were working on a new ver- 
sion of “Mixed-Up Mother Goose.” 
COMPUTER’’ article in this very issue as 
proof that Mark Crowe and Scott Murphy 
were spending their time on a new SCI 
version of this children’s game. 

In a not-so-rare disagreement with 
management, the Magpie would like to ask 

Ken Williams this question.... Why have 
the two guys from Andromeda been 
working on this SCI conversion while 
the fans are screaming for Space Quest 
IV? Come on Ken, how do you explain 
this waste of talent??? 

Interested and infuriated fans should 
write Ken Williams an angry note about 
this one — care of this magazine. 

Speaking of Space Quest IV, here’s a 
rumor that isn’t true... The Magpie can 
— on occasion — be wrong, and my report 
on the Space Quest IV soundtrack was one 
of these occasions. The Space Quest IV 
game will not have a reggae .soundtrack 
as reported by this reporter last issue. Both 
Scott and Mark sought me out to pick on 
me about this issue personally, and again 
as a pair, and I haven’t heard the end ol it 
yet. (I’m .sorry, guys, so cut it out, okay?) 

This is it for the “Heard it in the 
Hallway’’ column this time readers. I know 
the Magpie column is usually longer than 
this, but it seems that I’m getting a little 
competition these days. For real din from 
Sierra read What Lies Ahead (page 13). . . 
John Williams gives away more company 
secrets in those few pages than 1 did in my 
last three columns! 

Page 22 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I -900-370-KLUE I Inside I -900-370-5 ! 1 3 

Sierra News Magazine 

Ten-year-old Fan Reports 
Falling Victim To King’s 
Quest Disease 

Dear Roberta and Ken 
I think I discovered a new disease. K.Q.D. 
(King’s Quest Disease) Any time of day or 
night I have to play one of your games, 
mostly King's Quest. One time 1 played 
your games from 8 at night to 1 :30 in the 
morning. All the rest of the night I 
dreamed about all the games. I usually 
play King's Quest / a little bit, then II, III, 
or IV a little bit. I then go to bed thinking 
of how to solve each puzzle I run into. I 
love King's Quest. Changing the subject, I 
am 10 years old. I have been playing your 
games for a couple of years. I want to ask 
a couple of questions. What’s the gnome’s 
name? In King's Quest /, where is the rope 
to bring goat to the bridge. I simply can’t 
get past the shark in Quest IV, or the trolls 
in Quest IV. I know to save my game, and 
to come back later and keep on trying, and 
stay at the end of screen, but are there any 
other tricks? When are you coming out 
with Quest V? What is it about? I thank 
you and everyone else involved In King’s 
Quest very much. 

Love Jenna Feldherg, Massachusetts. 

King’s Quest As A Spelling 
Teacher And Appreciation 
For (loldrush 

Dear Sirs 

Some time ago, I purchased King's Quest 
III from a local software store. The game 
appears to be great, but a problem 
developed. I also have two young boys 
who love to play your games, but they are 
somewhat careless. In the course of time 
they have managed to lose the instruction 
book which contains the magic spells 
which are necessary to complete the game. 

I called the Customer Service Number 
recently and was told to return Disk 1 with 
$5.(K) and you would restore the game and 
documentation. Enclosed are Disk 1 and a 
check for $5. 

1 read your latest catalogue which came 
with my new copy of Space Quest III with 
interest. I would like to add an anecdote to 
your list. When my older boy was five 
years old and in preschool, he was just 
starting to learn to read. We had just pur- 
chased the original King's Quest and he be- 
came extremely interested in it. His cousin 

gave him a couple of timely tips, but in 
order to play the game he had to learn to 
read and to spell. He was so driven by the 
game that he would come to us constantly 
with spelling words until he had mastered 
them. I thoroughly believe that his desire 
to play your game was the catalyst in his 
teaching himself to read. 

1 also would offer one comment of en- 
couragement. I note in several magazine 
ratings that Gold Rush! does not fare so 
well. In my opinion it is the best that I 
have seen that you have produced. The 
others are so difficult that it either takes us 
several years to solve or we end up relying 
on a hint book. With Gold Rush! there was 
just the right balance so that we did not get 
frustrated yet it was interesting to play. I 
would like to see more games like this, 
and I do recommend it as the first game 
for anyone who has not tried your products. 

Douglas Eland, Illinois 

This Young Man Is Full Of 
More Questions Than We 
Can Classify In One Simple 

Dear Sir 

I have two Sierra games on my IBM and I 
love them. I’ve got Space Quest II and 
I’ve only got 56 points (and I can’t believe 
I even got that much). I think it is more 
fun when there are things you have to fig- 
ure out and when you get to type. And the 
graphics are the best (thanks to the ace 
graphic designers). 

1 want to know if poor old King Graham is 
going to be the hero or be in another game. 
(It just makes me feel sad that the legen- 
dary King Graham is mostly forgotten in 
the games.) 

I also want to know how the Sierra com- 
pany puts the information on disks and 
who does what and how they get the 
coolest and the awesomest graphics and 
how Sierra was started. Maybe you could 
make a game that shows buyers how Sier- 
ra makes the games and maybe, if the tech- 
nology is good enough, you could even 
make your computer game on that idea. 

And buyers could learn to make computer 
games and maybe then — dream — 
change from being a TV show star to 
being a member of the Sierra On Line Inc. 
That’s what I want to be when I grow up. 
P.S. My dad is a political scientist and 
when I told him I wanted to be a member 

of Sierra he said “You mean if you are not 
smart enough to be a political scientist you 
will work with computers” and 1 said “No, 
if I’m not smart enough to work with 
Sierra, I will be a boxer, and if I’m not 
smart enough to be a boxer I will be a 
political scientist.” 

Sincerely Jared Hancock, Utah 

Kudos For Copy Protection 

Dear Fellow Human Beings 
Yesterday I purchased The Colonel's Be- 
quest. As I was looking through the box, 
noticing the warranty card, I realized that I 
have many Sierra games which I have not 
registered. I thought I would send them all 
in, assuring gainful employment for one 
other of my species. (I have sent one or 
two cards in to you in the past.) Of course, 

1 expect to win a new car or something for 
buying so many of your games. 

1 have one or two comments that I would 
like to make about your games: In par- 
ticular, about the copy protection. In your 
earlier products the on-disk schemes were 
lousy. However, I have just completed 
Leisure Suit Larry 3 and I think the use of 
the Nontoonyt tonight magazine actually 
adds to the game. I have just opened the 
box of The Colonel's Bequest and found 
the red magnifying glass and the sheet of 
fingerprints. It makes me look forward to 
playing the game. I appreciate the need for 
copy protection; some of us have not yet 
evolved into high life forms. I also think 
that you folks at Sieira have earned kudos 
for your clever integration of copy protec- 
tion into the game-play itself. 

Finally, I have greatly enjoyed each of 
your games (and I am not usually a game 
person) especially the Space Quest series. 

I would like to see more humorous 
Science Fiction epics with other charac- 
ters. Another product 1 would like to see 
from Sierra is a game construction pro- 
gram. That would be a great deal of fun. 
Anyway, I am kx)king forward to some in- 
teresting new products. 

Robert Hilleman, Texas. 

Editor's Note: We were interested to note 
that both these gentlemen suggest a game 
about making games. This suggestion, 
from different parts of the country, and 
even different generations, will be passed 
along. No promises, though. 

Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Sen ice (209) 683-H989 Orders I -800-326-6654 

Page 23 

Rob Holland Tours Sierra 

kcccnlly a young man naincil Koh 
Hollaiul visited Sierra with liis lainily. 
Rob is 1 1 years old. 1 le has started his own 
soltware business, which he calls 
EXIDOS ON-UNH. His latest game is 
Name That State which teaches the user 
about the 5i) states. Other games he has 
programmed are House Quest, f uture 
Quest. Prifu e’s Quest. Break In, and Spell 
That Word. All of his games have anima- 
tion, graphics and sound. He says he gets 
lots of help and good ideas from his Mom 

and Dad, but most ol his inspiration comes 
Ironi Sierra On-Line. 

A lew weeks later Ken Williams 
received a thank you note Irom Rob. It was 
on disk and was sufficiently unusual and 
interesting that we have taken screen shots 
and reproduced it here. Unfortunately, we 
cannot show the motion the plane 
“flew," the skier “skied," and the deer 
“ran" across the screen. 

Ken Williams and Rob Holland 

Pa^e 24 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I -9()()-370-KLUE / Inside I -9()()-37()-5 1 13 

Sierra News Mas>azine 


By Liz Jacobs 
Customer Service Manager 

“Look, Mom, there’s Jim Walls, the Designer of Police Quest!” 
“Wow, look it’s Roberta Williams. She’s the BEST!” 

“Hey look, that’s Sonny Bonds. ..he works in Customer Service!!” 

“I can’t believe it... I actually SAW ‘those two guys from Andromeda 


These comments are routine when 
visitors are touring our facilities. 

I think nothing pleases Ken Williams 
more than seeing Sierra fans out here 
visiting “home away from home”. Ken 
loves to share his excitement about what 
is happening in this industry with anyone 
who is as excited as he is. 

Your first stop will be the Video R(X)m 
to see a video of the programmers, com- 
puter artists and musicians at work. 

Your video tour will begin with a visit 
from Roberta herself. She will explain the 
actual role of a “Sierra game designer” 
and how she develops a concept into an 
actual finished product. From here, we 
will visit the desk of one of our graphic 
artist’s. YOU are actually going to get a 
peek at the tools that these creative people 
use to bring those “Sierra graphics” into 
your home! It is a fascinating demonstra- 
tion!! Of course, we need you to sit awhile 
with one of those “programmer types” and 
get a feel for his part in all of this. There 
is sooo much brainstomiing going on in 
that part of the building. ..the temperature 
is surely 10 degrees hotter than any other 
room! Then there is Quality Assurance. 
You cannot believe AAAALLL of those 
machines lined up wall to wall!! All sizes, 
all shapes, all configurations, and even all 
colors! Wait until you see those devilish 
little grins on the faces of our QA’ERS as 

they “beat” on those soon to be released 
games. Finally, the serenity of the music 
room, and those brilliant musicians. Til 
have to admit, I STILL think it’s pretty 
exciting whenever I enter the Music 
Department with all of it’s high-tech 
equipment, and I see these great musicians 
sitting around with headphones on.. .look- 
ing VERY intense, as they delve into their 
composing mode. And what about those 
wild and crazy artists in our very own Art 
Department?? 1 guess you would have to 
be a little wild to create those fantastically 
creative box covers, posters, newsletters, 
catalogs, and T-shirt designs. 

After the video tour you will actually 
tour the Art Department and see the 
original art for posters and box covers, and 
the desktop publishing center for this 
News Magazine. 

You are going to see how the entire 
creative process works, from the original 
art work that is submitted by the artist to 
the VP of Marketing for approval as a box 
sleeve, to the finished product from the 
printer. Then there is Customer Service 
and the famous Sierra BBS!! You’ll meet 
our resident sysop and BBS programmer. 
Believe me.. .moderns are going to be the 
future of computer users. Our sysop will 
fascinate you with the endless pos- 
sibilities of the modem and our BBS! 
When we take you to our Duplication 

Department you will hardly be able to 
hear me over the hummmm of those 
phenominal trace machines! The best in 
the west! And who knows ... as we 
wander through the Sierra Hallways we 
might even come across Ken Williams 

One thing is obvious — SIERRA means 
TEAM. It takes the creativity and effort of 
everyone working on a project to make it 
happen. This is what I don’t want you to 
miss, so... 

Make your plans now. Head for 
California and see all the sights — Sierra 
On-Line, Yosemite National Park, San 
Francisco, Disneyland, Lake Tahoe, and 
the list goes on!! 

Sierra offers tours daily at 2:30 pm. If 
you are planning to come our way, please 
call me at (209) 683-8989, and 1 will make 
sure to have a tour guide available. You 
need to allow about 1-1/2 to 2 hours for 
the tour. We’re located about 12 miles just 
south of the Yosemite National Park 
entrance on Highway 41. To reach Sierra 
On-Line from Highway 41 in Oakhursl 
you turn right at the statue of the “Talking 
Bear” (the only stoplight in town, and it is 
just a blinking red light at a fourway stop 
sign). Just past the Post Office you turn 
left on Sierra Way, and here you are. 

Editor's Note: Because of expansion of the 
Sierra building, some parts of the tour may he 
unavailable some daws. 


24 H(»ur Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer .Service (209) 6SS-S9S9 Orders I -S00-S26-6654 

Page 25 




hy Kathy Sands 



Did you ever play “Spy” when you 
were a kid? I remember getting together 
with friends from the neighborhood, turn- 
ing the bunk beds into a submarine, writing 
messages to each other in code and chang- 
ing into many different disguises. I liked 
being a spy; that’s probably why I like 
Codename: Iceman. 

CODENAME: ICEMAN is Sierra’s new 
spy adventure game. It contains a very 
realistic submarine simulator, demands 
strategic thinking and planning and re- 
quires an eye for detail. We’re receiving 
rave reviews from our customers, 
everyone loves ICEMAN!! 


Life seems so easy at first: dancing, 
drinking, rescuing drowning women, and 
playing volleyball in the Tahitian sun- 
shine. But an urgent message from General 
Braxton, a trip to The Pentagon, and a 
meeting under maximum security cuts 
your R & R short . . . soon you’re back to 
work as undercover agent: Johnny 

Your mission, should you choose to 
accept it, is to navigate a nuclear attack 
submarine from Pearl Harbor through the 
Arctic Ocean (dodging Russian 
Destroyers, enemy submarines and 
dangerous icebergs) into the Straits of 
Gibraltar. On an oasis in Tunisia you’ll 
meet up with a CIA agent, disguised as a 
Muslim, who will assist you in rescuing 

the United States Ambassador who’s being 
held hostage by terrorists. 


Together, you and The Captain of the 
USS Blackhawk will open a locked brief- 
case to review the confidential orders ex- 

“Indulge yourself. 

Become the Spy 
you’ve always 
wanted to be. 




plaining your assignment and discover a 
chart with instructions on which direction 
to travel. Use the electronic table map in 
the Control Room to plot your course. 


The Radioman aboard the USS Black- 
hawk will relay coded messages to you 
from Washington and from the CIA. Tbe 
messages will be delivered in Alpha form. 
Use the Decoding Book found aboard the 
Blackhawk to substitute the letters for 
numbers. Next, you’ll look at the boxed 
shaded areas in the Technical Manual that 
was included with your game. Those num- 
bers represent page number, line and word. 
For example, if your message was 

A A - B - C 

And if the Decoding Book said 

A=3 B=2C=1 

Your coded message would be 

“33-2 - 1” 

You would turn to PAGE 33 of the 
Technical Manual and read LINE 2, 

Use the computer in your quarters and 
enter that word as the “Primary Word” to 
decode your first message. 

Decoding messages from the CIA is 
similar. But, you’ll need the CIA offsets 
found on the microfilm. You do have the 
microfilm, don’t you? Well, didn't you 
ever talk to Stacy back in Tahiti? 


The trick to sinking the Russian 
Destroyer is to run silent and run deep. 
Don’t attack too soon and give your posi- 
tion away. When the Destroyer is within 
range, begin launching decoys for their 
incoming torpedoes. Lock-on and Fire 
your missiles. You must successfully hit 
the Destroyer three times to sink her. 


You’ll learn how to signal the Coontz 
after decoding one of the messages from 
Washington. But, following the Coontz 
can be difficult. 

The Coontz is the blinking cross on the 
screen. Imagine your screen is a compass 

0“ being North 
90“ being East 

180“ being South 

270“ being West 

Then, watch your Heading Indicator. 
As the Coontz moves, follow her right into 


You must decode the messages sent by 
the CIA tor instructions on what to do at 
the Oil Rig and at The Harbor. You will 
need to set the proper waypoints in the 
diver to locate the Oil Rig and Tlie Harbor. 

By looking at the Oil Rig and the Har- 
bor through the periscope, you can get the 

Page 26 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California 1-900-370-KLUE / Inside 1-900-370-5113 

Sierra News Magazine 

headings. The distance to the Oil Rig and 
The Harbor can be obtained from the 


Sierra's most dilTicult games. These hints 
will help you through the most compli- 
cated situations. U you're still stuck, you 
can always call our Hint Line for assis- 
tance. heel free to write to us anytime, and 
we'll quickly write back to you with a 
solution to help you continue with your 
quest. If you own a modem, you can con- 
tact our BBS 24-hours a day and have your 
hint answered immediately. Often, car- 
toons submitted to The Sierra News 
Magazine have clues to our games. We 
also have Hint Books available for every 
Sierra adventure game with complete 
answers to all the game puzzles. 

If you've ever fantasized about being 
an undercover agent, if you're intrigued by 
spy thrillers, or if you ever played “Spy” 
as a kid, you'll enjoy CODENAME: 

ICEMAN. Indulge yourself, become the 
Spy you've always wanted to be, play 


“'I'hc Nectarine song in Nontoonyt Tonight was a CAf^ITAL idea 
although it didn't seem so INITIALLY." 


24 Hour Sierra WHS - (209) 6X3-4463 

( 'i(st(*mcr Service Orders ! -S0()-S2()-('t()S4 

ISii^e 27 

hy Ed Ferguson 

hi this issue we are printing a general 
round-up of problems people are fad 

Hurried Heroes Paralyzed in 

Q l'm playing Hero's Quest and oc- 
casionally I gel stuck trying to pass 
through doors or passages. Sometimes it hap- 
pens, and other times it doesn’t. What am I 

A I wo of the most common examples of 
this are “entering Baba Yaga’s hut” iind 
“exiting the Brigand fortress.” If you run into 
this problem, check your menu and see if you 
are in ‘fast hero’ mcxie. Fast Hero mode was 
devised for use on slower speed machines to 
facilitate traveling through the outside world. It 
was not intended for ind(X)r use. Place yourself 
in “normal hero speed” and you should be able 
to pass these ob.siacles. 

Our latest will not incorporate this 
feature as a user selectable item. It will only be 
available on slower machines iind will kick in 
when deemed necessiiry. In anticipation of your 
next question, “necessary” is detemiined by 
system speed and graphics resp(xise, conse- 
quently, it is not totally predictable. 

Attention All Thieves: When 
in Doubt, Don’t Ask! 

Q While playing Hero's Quest, I’m in 
the thieves guild and whenever I “ask 
aDoui ’ the rules of Dag-Nab-It, I get an 
“Oops error” and then the game exits to DOS. 
How can I play the game? 

A The rules are simple. You take turns 
with the Chief Thief throwing daggers 
at the board. Each hero gets three turns, and 
throws three daggers in each turn. As with a 
dart board, the closer to the center of the 
board, the higher the score will be. The 
highest score wins the bet. the force 
and angle of the throw with the arrow keys 
or the mouse, according to your hand pos\- 
tion. enter or click on the small Dag- 
Nab-It board to throw. 

Unfortunately, if you try to ask about the 
rules while in the Thieves guild, or while 
playing Dag-Nab-It, you gel an “Oops Error” 
mes.sage and exit to DOS. To avoid this un- 
friendly situation, save your game when you 
enter the Thieves Guild. Avoid asking about 
the game, play, practice, rules, help, or Dag- 

Nab-It while in this room. Don't “?” 
while playing Dag-Nab-It. In other words, in 
the Thieves Guild, when in doubt, don’t ask. 
You'll have more fun that way. 

(i(M)d News and Bad News 
on the Dreaded 
Fragmentation Bug 

Q Jusl as I get to the end oWero's Quest, 
I try to save my character for Hero's 
Quest II and I get the “Dreaded Fragmenta- 
tion Bug.” What’s wrong? 

A The “Dreaded Fragmentation Bug” 
(K'curs at a critical point in the game 
where many items are being called into play. 
The error usually (but not always) occurs on 
machines with system speeds lower than the 

recommended XMhz. The solution to this is 
a “go(xI news/bad news” scenario. The most 
current release of this program will correct 
this situation, however, you will be unable to 
use your old save games, and will need to 
start over. If you have experienced this prob- 
lem, please call ('ustomer Support at 209- 

Invalid Disk Change Error 
wSolved by Manual Installation 

j j lam trying to install my Sierra game 
and when I get to disk #2 during the 
inslaTlation, I get the message: Invalid disk 
change reading drive A. Please insert volume 
GAMENAME #1 serial ()(K)() (K)()(). 

(GAMENAME represents the call letters of 
the game involved) 


1) Place Disk one of your Sierra program into Drive A, and close the drive door. 

Type: CD A: \ and press [ENTER] 

Type: C: and press [ENTER] 

Type: CD\ and press [ENTER] 

Type: IMD SIERRA and press [ENTER] 

Type: Cl) SIERRA and press [ENTER] 

Note: If your hard drive is not C, substitute the C: above with the correct drive 

2) Now create a batch file enabling normal operation of the game: 

Type: CD C: \SIERRA and press [ENTER] 


Type: CD KQ4 and press [ENTER] 

Type: KQ4 and press [ENTER] 

Type: CD\ and press [ENTER] 

Press the [F6] key, and press [ENTER] 

3) Make and change to the appropriate subdirectory: 

Type: MD KQ4 and [ENTER] 

Type: CD KQ4 and press [ENTER] 

4) For each disk in the set: Place in Drive A:, and close the drive door. 

Type: COPY A:*.* and press [ENTER] 

5) SPECIAL PROCEDURE FOR 512K GAMES (As indicated on outer box sleeve): 
Once all the disks in the set have been copied to the hard drive, you run Sierra’s 
INSTALL program. (If your game is a 256K game, skip to step 6). 

Type: INSTALL and press [ENTER] 

Answer a]] questions pertaining to your hardware (be sure the answers are correct, as 
incorrect answers may cause problems while running the game). The final question 
gives you the option of installing the program to your hard drive. As you have al- 
ready done this, press [ESC] to skip this step. When the message: ‘Setup is 
Complete’ appears on your screen, press [ENTER]. 

6) To run the game from your root directory: 

Type: CD \SIERRA and press [ENTER] 

Type: KQ4 and press [ENTER] 

Note: If the game you are installing is not King's Quest IV, substitute the KQ4 
in all cases above with the correct call letters (example: Space III = SQ3). 

Page 28 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I -900-370-KLUE / Inside I -900-370-5 ! 1 3 

Sierra News Magazine 

A You probably are running your system 
with DOS 4.0 or 4.0 1 , and you probab- 
ly have a hard disk partition greater than 
32MB. The problem usually occurs when 
trying to load one of the SCI 512K games. 
IBM recommends that you load 
SHARE.EXE when you are using hard disk 
partitions greater than 32MB. SHARE.EXE 
will load automatically if it is in the ROOT 
directory, or is in the PATH specified by the 
system. SHARE provides support for file 
sharing and “diskette change” protection. 

There are three ways around this issue. 
First, you can prevent SHARE from loading 
on your system by removing it from the 
PATH and restarting your system. After in- 
stalling the game, it is recommended that you 
return to your original configuration. The 
second way is to perform a manual installa- 
tion as listed here. The third way is to create 
a boot disk, following the steps listed here, 
with the addition of one item. You must 
create an AUTOEXEC.BAT file using 
COPY CON, and insert the statement SET 
with this disk and run the installation as 
instructed. You will not be required to boot 
with this disk to play your games, after the 

New Mac Users Encounter 
Mysterious Phenomenon 

Q 1 recently purchased a new Macintosh 
2CX or 2C1 and when 1 try to run Sierra 

games, I get a starburst of colors on the 
screen, multiple character images, and empty 
option boxes. Is there something wrong with 
my disks? 

A No, there is nothing technically wrong 
with your disks. The problem results 
from the use of Mac's new 32-Bit Quick- 
draw. On the 2CX model, it is an optional 
program which is installed in the system 
folder, and is activated on system startup. 
You can disable the program by dragging it 
out of the system folder. Unfortunately, in the 
2C1 model, 32-Bit Quickdraw is ROM resi- 
dent and there is nothing that can be done to 
disable it at this time. 

The problem is currently being addressed 
by our programming staff, and should be 
eliminated with the release of our Mac 
products in our new SCI language. Look for 
these new Mac products to be released 
throughout the year! 

Larry Takes a Fall on Amiga 500 

Q l’m running Leisure Suit Larry II, 
Looking For Love In Several Wrong 
naves on my Amiga 500, and when I get to 
disk #4, 1 get a message “Out of Handle.s” 
and cannot continue the game. How do 1 
handle this? 

A What’s happening here is that you cut 
Larry's parachute so he falls out of the 
tree, and lands on the ground with a resound- 


FORMAT a Blank Disk with MS-DOS System files (using the /s option) to make a 
“Bootable” disk. 

Put the blank disk into Drive A 
At C type: FORMAT A:/S (ENTER) 

Respond to IX)S prompts 
Put DOS System Disk into Drive A 
At the A type: FORMAT A;/S ( ENTER ) 

Switch disk as prompted by Format program 
Respond to IX)S prompts 

Put the CONFIG.SYS file on the new disk using COPY CON. 


Type: A: (ENTER) 


Type: FILES=15 (ENTER) 

Press the F6 Key then ) ENTER) 

Label disk: SIERRA B(X)T DISK 
Re-boot the computer using the new, DOS disk you just created. 


Put the Sierra B(X)t Disk into Drive A 

Turn the computer system OFT then ON OR 

I>ress (TRL- ALT-DEL 

Follow instructions on the Reference Card for running the program. 

ing thud. Then Larry starts to see little birdies 
circling his head. Due to memory manage- 
ment problems on the 500 model with 5 1 2K, 
the loading of these complex sounds causes 
the “Out of Handles” error. 

You can resolve this problem yourself by 
following the instructions below. If you have 
any problems, you can get help by calling 
Sierra Customer Support at 209-683-8989. 

BACK-UPS ONLY (This should not be a 
problem, as this game is not copy- 

1 . Load Workbench 

2. Click on Workbench icon 

3. Click on system icon 

4. Click on CLl icon 

Single drive users: 


Insert LSL2 back-up Disk 4 

Double drive users 

with Workbench Disk in DFO: 

LSL2 back-up Disk 4 in DFl: 

CD DFO: (To make sure you are on WB disk) 

Hard disk users can insert back-up Disk 
4 in drive DFO, then: 


When To Use A Sierra Boot Disk 

Q 1 am having all kind of problems 
playing my new Sierra game. Some- 
times 1 can't install it, sometimes it won't 
bcx)t, sometimes 1 get error messages, and 
sometimes it just plain freezes up and I can't 
do anything until I reset the dam machine! 
How can 1 get around this? I want to play 
computer games! 

A Sometimes when mnning software that 
requires a lot of memory such as our 
games, conllicts can arise betwex^n the game 
and some of the various menuing systems, 
tenninate and stay resident progriims, and 
other after market dcxKiads available for your 
machine. Our games iire best mn as standalone 
softwiire. The easiest way to accomplish this 
without altering the configuration of your 
machine is to create a plain IX)S lxx)t disk. You 
can create this disk using a spare lloppy disk, 
and following the instmetions in the box to the 
right. B(x)t with this disk in your drive .A: and 
play your games. When you wiint to return to 
your original configuration, simply remove the 
plain Dos disk, insert your regular lxx)t disk (or 
no disk at all if you Ixuit from hard disk), and 
reset your machine. 

Summer nw 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 68,V4463 

Customer Service (209) 6SJ-S9S9 Orders I -H()0-326-0654 

Page 29 

Cartoon/Drawing Contest 

Winners in this issue: 

Klaus Dahlem, page 62 
David A. Handlong, page 53 
L.R. Harskjold, page 4 1 
Ben Hyde, page 52 
Joshua Jones, this page 

David Koran, page 22 
Dan Santal, page 27 
Daniel Wellman, page 14 
Dan Williams, this page 
Andrea Vittek, this page 

Sierra’s Cartoon and Drawing Contest is an ongoing event, 
so send in your submissions now! Winning entries will be 
published in the Sierra News Magazine, and winners will 
receive a Sierra software prtxluct of their choice. The 
number of winners will depend on the quality of the entries, 
and are chosen at the sole discretion of Sierra On-Line. 

Cartoons or drawings must be original ideas, in black ink 
(not in pencil or in color) on white unlined paper (please do 
not fold). Bear in mind that large entries will have to be 

Cartoon submitted by Dan Williams, New York. Age 13 


ftl5 WAV TO SAkI 

IP? NeW 


rn ^elVtncj “foo old •Tor "this/ 

I sure vMiftb Little N\iS 5 Mu^fet 
would get off Qnd 

help out around here^.^^ 

Cartoon submitted by Andrea Vittek. Ohio 

reduced for space considera- 
tions. Each entry should relate 
to one or more of Sierra’s 
products. All submissions be- 
come the property of Sierra 
On-Line, Inc. 

Submit entries to Sierra On- 
Line, Box 1 103, Oakhurst, CA 
93644, Attention: Cartoon 
Contest, and indicate the 
product desired and type of 
computer you have in the 
event you are a winner. Please 
include your phone number, 
and if you are one of our 
younger entrants, your age. 

Please do not send correspon- 
dence in the same envelope. 
Address all correspondence to 
Box 485, Coarsegold, CA 

arry for cool 



.. . 

Cartoon submitted by Joshua Jones, New Jersey. Age 13 

I’rooic^iry mcg>/ 

Page 30 

24 Hour Sierra Hint IJnes 

Outside California I -900-370-KLUE / Inside I -900-370-5 U 3 

Sierra News Magazine 

Message from the President, continued from page 3 

Actually, her employer loved her 
(Lawrys foods in L.A.) because she used 
to bring home her work and Td assist her 
in her programming efforts by night. 

I still remember my first job where I 
could program through a terminal con- 
nected to a computer. What an amazing 
concept. No card deck! Although the 
industry was so used to cards in those 
days that all the editors and compilers 
still pretended their input was a card 
deck. The mainframe computers 1 was 
working with by 1978 were starting to 
have awesome computer power, as much 
as a megabyte of memory and hundreds 
of megabytes of on-line disk storage. 
You know, about the equivelent of the 
386 Pm writing this article on. 

So, as you can see, in six short years 
1 got to watch the computer industry be 
born. Then in 1978 I saw something be 
born that I knew immediately was going 
to be significant. The Radio Shack cor- 
poration introduced the first personal 
computer for the masses — the TRS-80. 
Apple usually takes credit for inventing 
the personal computer. However, the 
TRS-80 really succeeded years before 
the Apple. Actually other computers, the 
SOL and the PET, even came before 
this, they Just didn’t get as much 

I was at a computer show for 
mainframe computers when 1 first saw the 
TRS-80. There was one in somebody’s 
lxx)th and I believe it was hard at work 
computing prime numbers. The TRS-80 
had a tape drive attached (a home audio 
cassette player), an enomious 4K of ram 
iind a black/white graphic screen! There 
were people lined up a hundred deep just 
to get to touch its keyboard. I was one of 
them. The year? 1978. 

Thanks to a computer owning neigh- 
bor, 1 managed to spend a fair amount of 
time programming the TRS-80. What a 
marvelous machine! In late 1979, my 
brother l.arry (also a programmer) called 
me one day to look at a computer he had 
started playing with: the Apple 2. The 
Apple had color but an unreliable tape 

Meanwhile, the computer industry 
had now evolved to the point where I 
could do my programming at home via 
modem (300 baud). I used a teletype 

machine to dial into a service bureau on 
the east coast (see how things always 
come around again). Once in a while, 
when I was supposed to be working, 
Roberta and I would cheat and run games 
off the remote computer. One of those 
games was called Adventure and was the 
game that created the entire Adventure 
Game industry. You communicated with 
it in sentences like LOOK HOLE or 
KILL SNAKE. Roberta fell in love. I 
couldn’t get her off my teletype. She’d 
even wake me up in the middle of the 
night to bounce ideas off me for how to 
solve the game. 

I wanted a personal computer because 
I had an idea for a software product that 
was going to make me rich. What if 
personal computers could run the same 
programming languages as the 
mainframes? In those days Fortran was 
a popular language. I had just finished 
programming a Fortran-like compiler to 
run on mainframe computers. Why not 
put up a Fortran compiler on a personal 
computer? People could then buy some- 
thing for two thousand dollars that would 
allow them to do on a micro what a 
mainframe was needed for previously. 

For Christmas of 1979 1 pestered 
Roberta into agreeing to buy me a com- 
puter. Our big decision was whether to 
buy an Apple or a TRS-80. When we 
went to the Apple dealer, Rainlx^w Com- 
puters, in Northridge, California they 
showed me something new Apple had 
just come out with. The disk drive. Wow! 
No more three minute load times for a 
100 line program. That made it an easy 
decision. We bought an Apple 2 with a 
disk drive (16K of memory) for just 
under three thousand dollars. It even 
came with an RF modulator so it would 
work with our home TV. 

Now I had it all, a computer and a 
project. I started at once on my Fortran 
compiler. Well, almost at once. First, 
Roberta talked me into programming a 
computer game which she designed. I 
really just wrote it to thank her for get- 
ting me the computer for Christmas. 

I .still remember the night she talked me 
into it. We were out at a restaurant :ind she 
was telling me about playing Adventure 
and how she had her own idea for a game. 
She started de.scribing the plot, how there 

was going to be this spooky old house 
with several people locked up in it for the 
night. One by one they would .start turn- 
ing up dead. Roberta has a voice that 
carries when she gets excited. That was 
the first of many occasions, through the 
decade, when people overhearing our 
conversations in restaurants would look 
at us like we were crazy. 

Just a couple of months later the game 
was completed. Roberta called it 
Mystery House. 1 called ^ big software 
publisher of the time, Programma Inter- 
national. They were doing a booming 
business selling games on audio cassette 
for Apples and TRS-80’s. I mentioned 
that I was working on a Fortran compiler 
but that we aLso had this little computer 
game. Dave Gordon, Programma’s 
President, went crazy when he saw the 
game. He immediately offered a 25% 
royalty for it. He wasn’t interested at all 
in the Fortran compiler. 

It was a tough decision to decide to 
publish ourselves. There were no 
software distributors in those days. 
Being a software publisher meant driv- 
ing from store to store selling from the 
trunk of your car. 

We showed Roberta’s game to a few 
stores though, including Rainbow Com- 
puting, all of whom immediately bought 
copies. Recognizing the writing on the 
wall I decided we’d be our own publish- 
ers. And, as long as we were soliciting 
computer stores, why not distribute for 
some of the other hackers like ourselves 
who were writing software. 

I contacted another company in Florida 
that was doing text based adventure 
games, Scott Adams International, to see 
about distributing their games and a com- 
piiny up in Washington, Synergistic, to see 
about distributing theirs. Ultimately I sold 
the software distributing end of the busi- 
ness (the total inventory of which fit in two 
boxes) to a friend of mine. Bob Leff, who 
turned it into a really huge .software dis- 
tribution company called Softsel and 
Roberta and I ftKused on just being a 
software publisher. 

Mystery House was the first adven- 
ture game with graphics. By the end of 
1980 we followed it up with the first 
adventure game in color. The Wizard and 
the Princess. In 1983 we shipped the first 

Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sitrra HHS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 0S3-S9H9 Orders I -800-320-0654 

Page 35 

News Magazine Contest #1 

Sierra invites you to 

Come Home & Meet the Family! 

That’s right — YOU could be the lucky Sierra customer who will be bringing your family to meet 
our family here at Sierra On-Line. 

The winner of Sierra’s Come Home and Meet the Family contest will be coming here to Sierra 
country for a whirlwind weekend in beautiful downtown Coarsegold, including a tour of the Sierra 
facilities in Oakhurst, a chance to meet your favorite game designers, dinner with Ken and Roberta, 
and armloads of prizes to take home. 

Of course our roving reporters will be there too, taking pictures of all the good times for you to 
show the folks back home; and we’ll be planning a feature article about your trip for a future issue of 
the Sierra NewsMa^azine. 

Here’s how to win: 

In the past ten years. Sierra has produced more than 100 products. The entrant with the most complete list of Sierra products produced 
between 1980 and April 1 , 1990 will be the winner. In the case of two or more lists with the same number of products, a random drawing 
will determine the winner. Winners are chosen at the sole discretion of Sierra On-Line and all submissions become the property of Sierra 
On-Line, Inc. In the cases of winners under 18 years of age, parental permission is required. All winners will be required to sign 
appropriate releases to make our insurance people and lawyers happy. 

Contest Rules 

• You must live within the United States, Canada or Mexico to be eligible. 

• The winner will be accompanied by immediate family members 
(limited to four people). 

• Type or print the names of as many Sierra (Sierra On-Line, On-Line Sys- 
tems) products as possible. 

• Alphabetize your list; for this purpose, numbers come before letters, and 
if a game starts with “The” put it in the “T’s.” 

• Include your name, address and telephone number on your entry. 

Mail your entry to: 

Sierra Family Contest, Sierra On-Line, Box 1 103, Oakhurst, CA 93644 

Deadline for postmark is October 1, 1990. 

Message from the President, continued from page 35 

adventure game with animation. Kings 
Quest. In 1988 we shipped the first adven- 
ture game with a stereo sound track. I think 
Space Quest III broke new ground by in- 
tegrating a quality action game. Astro 
Chicken. Later this year we’ve got some 
other surprises up our sleeves. 

Sometimes I hear Sierra referred to as 
a niche company. Although we have 
done several things besides adventure 
games through the years there has never 
been a year when adventure games 
weren’t the bulk of our business. An 
adventure game is really just interactive 
storytelling. I’m usually reluctant to use 
the term interactive fiction because that 
was the trademark of an ill-fated com- 
petitor of ours, Infocom. However, it 
described in the best way I’ve ever heard 

what we do for a living. The only other 
great metaphor I’ve ever heard is the 
film West world. Do you remember the 
film? A derivative of it was later made 
for TV under the name Fantasy Island. 
We create alternate universes where you 
can live a vicarious existence. 

Although I’ve talked a great deal 
about the evolution of the computer in- 
dustry, I’ve only hinted at the evolution 
of the adventure game. My belief is that 
the adventure game will someday en- 
compass most of the other categories of 
games in the industry. Currently games 
are thought of as action, simulation, role- 
playing, board or adventure. Is Heros 
Quest an adventure game or a role-play- 
ing game? Is Iceman a simulator or an 
adventure game? Short-term we catch a 

bit of flack when we muddy the borders 
on the different genres. However, long- 
term 1 remain steadfast in my belief that 
it will all come together into interactive 
fiction. The more we can do to allow you 
to “step into” a game and actually 
believe you are a part of the story the 
better. Some people view adventure 
games as the highest form of the 
crossword puzzle genre. 

I hope that Sierra through the next 
decade will show that to be a gross 
misunderstanding. We are, instead, the 
future of storytelling. We are storyliving. 

Page 36 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I-900-370-KLUE / Inside I -900-370-5 1 1 3 

Sierra News Magazine 

News Magazine Contest #2 

Be a character in 
King*s Quest V 

Anyone can enter and have a chance to be painted into Kings Quest V. Use your imagination to construct a costume that would fit 
into the land of Daventry or the surrounding countries. The best costume will win, and the winner will be incorporated into the 
King’s Quest V game. Roberta Williams herself will judge the entries. 

So put on your costume, have a color snapshot taken, and send us the photo — it’s OK to send more than one family member or 
friend in the same envelope. Be sure to put your name, address and telephone number on the back of the photo. 

Winners are chosen at the sole discretion of Sierra On-Line and all submissions 
become the property of Sierra On-Line, Inc. In the cases of winners under 
18 years of age, parental permission and release is required. All winners 
will be required to sign appropriate releases to make 
our insurance people and lawyers happy. 

Mail your entry to: 

King's Quest V Contest 
Sierra On-Line 
Box 1 103 

Oakhurst, CA 93644 

Deadline for postmark: August I, 1990 

Spring Issue 

The answer was Mystery House. 

Bobby Covington 


Mr. & Mrs. Walter C/agas 


Sandra Davidson 


Tom HartI 


Sarah Hayes 

^ New Jersey 

Andrew Jones 


Kmily Klokkevold 


Allen Lang 

New Jersey 

Ryan Stevenson 


Allison Willits 


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Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6H3-H9H9 Orders 1 -SOO-326-6654 

Page 37 

T he arrival of Bill Davis at Sierra On-Line has introduced 
a new cinematic process for putting computer games 
together. The following story is derived from an intemew 
in which Bill outlined the process. 

First comes the design docu- 
ment, which is text narrative. (A 
designer may well groan that 
the months of writing are 
covered in one sentence here, 
but, as the saying goes, “that's 
another story.") In this case — 

Keeping Up With Jones — 

Sierra purchased an existing 
game. The design was based on 
this original structure, so it was 
a matter of the Creative Direc- 
tor, Producer and Lead 
Programmer getting together 
and brainstorming about chan- 
ges or enhancements they 
wanted to make to the original 
design. The lead programmer 
wrote down the decisions in 
text form. Then Bill took it to 
storyboard, which means the 
text narrative drawn in pencil 
on paper. A storyboard might be 
likened to a comic strip of the 
whole game on paper, and laid 
out on a large bulletin board. 

The game designer, the art 
designer, the lead programmer 
and the music director then 
meet in front of the storyboard 
to familiarize all concerned 
with all facets of the project. It 
is here that any problems (tech- 
nical or otherwise) are brought 
up and worked out between 
these three. Any necessary 
changes are made to the 
storyboard before proceeding 
to the next step. 

Each room (“room" is the ver- 
nacular for “scene") can occupy 

several pages of the story board, depending on the amount of 
animation in the room. The design team uses the storyboard to see 
how the game looks as a total entity, before any work on the 
computer is started. 

Reproduced here are several of the individual drawings of the Keeping Up With Jones storyboard. 

6Htlce,'fovJ McJc 70 

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(5)56T6t>AL5 U(r 5TAK 

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Cuctc 6 ^T Ok) 

C4ACA<. BfJiSHFD seniiJ(r&ott^ 

CUCX to W|iJDowJ| 

PPa/toOS WimD 0\A/, 1 

PouJi isijD cocATto/O c:rjcc5tAi 
/N>S(Pe wr vjp fJe>T ScfieeiJ. 

^ CA*J Be" Ofosg-Ki o(2._ i^FTct. 

'<^1=000 Sei.fe'i.'TlONl sy OAO^UCr 

1^ SeCtCTtD TlMC" A?PfAj£^ 

AiJi^AATtS PbixInJ Tt/Ac 

CLoa^ TO 6c aitJCfleO AtJO Baca orrMAtP. 

Page 3S 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California 1 -900-370-KLUE / Inside I -900-370-5 1 ! 3 

Sierra News Magazine 

Then several stages follow: 

Artists draw the background pictures in 
pencil on paper. 

The artists work out the key animation 
drawings in pencil. 

These penciled background drawings and 
animation drawings are scanned into the 
computer. The scanner is a wonderful 
piece of equipment — it literally transfers 

the images from the paper to images on the 
computer screen. Sometimes loops 
(animation segments) from other games 
arc stolen as temporary stand-ins (for ex- 

ample segments of the Hero walking or 
riding from Hero's Quest I will be used in 

the beginning stages of Hero's Quest II). 
Actual photos are also sometimes scanned 
into the computer. 

This scanned art gets a rough version of the 
game in black and white up and running 
on the computer quickly. 

Next the artists concentrate on finished 
animation. As each piece of animation is 
finished, it replaces the stand-in version in 
the evolving game. 

Once all the animation is completed, the 
artists concentrate on finished background 
pictures and, once again, slowly replace 
the black and white versions with color. 
This background artwork can be done in 
two ways. Either the computer is used to 
color the backgrounds or the artists paint 

in the traditional way and the finished 
piece is scanned into the computer. 

The composer of the music was involved 
at the initial story board stage to get a 

feeling for the overall design. After the 
initial work is completed and a black and 
white version is up and running, the com- 
poser really gets involved. By playing the 
black and white version the composer can 
get a “real time" feeling by seeing how 
long each scene lasts, seeing the motion, 
and seeing the parts of the game where 
sound effects will be effective. 

The game is now beginning to be a whole 
piece, ready for fine tuning and testing. 

— Nancy Smifhe " 



Hmt bt^ 

V- — ^ 

3 Game Levels Are: 
Educational for Kids 
Fun For Youth 
Challenging For Adults 



*pw rw 


_ ... 

Enjoy nearly 300 important passages in each game! 

For fastest service, send check or 
money order for $29.95 each 
plus $3.00 shipping/handling to: 

The Family Jewels 

5031 Kent Place 
Santa Barbara, CA 93117 

IBM 3 1/2" disks available 
for an additional $2.00 per game. 

Latter-day Saints: Please request 
a copy of our brochure detailing 
our special LDS product line. 

Now Available For: 

100% IBM Compatible - MS-DOS 2.1 or higher 
Color monitor preferred, monochrome also supported 
Commodore 64/128 - Includes both C-64 
and TRUE C-128 versions! 


For more information, or to order C.O.D. call: 

(805) 683-4568 

California residents, please add 6 3/4% sales tax 

24 Hour Sierrii BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (20^) (M-S9S9 Orders / -S()()-d2fy-6654 



By Kerry Serj^ent 

Head of Sierra's BBS Systems Operations 
and Technical Support 

Sources for ^ame hints >>row! 

Coming soon to America’s Online and 
PC’ is the Sierra Hint I.ibrary. The entire 
hint library of Sierra’s own BBS, which spans 
years of compilation and refinement, will soon 
be available on these services. Both America’s 
Online and K"I ink are subscription online sys- 
tems from Quantum Software and offer a wide 
variety of additional services. For information 
and signup instructions on these systems, you 
can call these toll-free numbers: 

1. PCI ink (8(X)) 458-8532 

2. America’s Online (8(K)) 227-6.364 

In addition, hint support is growing steadily 

in the private sector. Prodigy users who drop by 
the Adventure Game Forum in the PC Club 
(JUMPWORD PC CIAIB)can obtain complete 
up-to-date lists of private Bulletin Board Ser- 
vices that support Sierra games! Just send 
electronic messages to such groups as the Sierra 
Expert Club or the Sierra Hint Club and mem- 
bers will be happy to help. Our own John 
Williams (a long time Prcxligy subscriber) is a 
regular on the service. 

Sierra’s On-Line 

To tell you the truth, when Sierra’s On-Line 
was first released I was skeptical. How could 
a GAME company produce a competitive 
communication package that people will 
use? Already the market seemed inundated 
by a large number of communication 
software packages (some just given away 
with modem purchases, others as 
shareware, or even free). Having spent a 
good portion of my computer time on or 
running Bulletin Board Systems, 1 also 
thought that the program might not have the 
features I look for in a communications 

1 made some interesting discoveries about 
Online. A while back I was asked to work up 
a presentation for our Customer Service Rep- 
resentatives at Sierra’s busy Customer Ser- 
vice department to demonstrate Sierra’s On- 
Line, to familiarize them with its features, 
and show' them how to help customers with 
potential problems. 

I started with Online’s script language. 
Scripts are long lists of commands for the com- 
puter to carry out while using telecommunica- 
tions (they allow the computer to perform 
routine tasks automatically). Script languages 
tend to vary widely between different software 
packages, and have few common threads. Pick- 

ing up a new script language has always been a 
lot like learning a new programming language. 
Every time you obtain a new piece of com- 
munication software, you have to learn the new 
language! Having worked with script languages 
for some time, I was convinced that the com- 
mands would, at first, be time consuming to 
learn and tedious to program, and if not that, 
then so crude as to be unusable. I was very 
surprised. In a few minutes (as opposed to 
hoars) I had Online’s script function down 
(Online’s scripts arc called AUTOLOGON 
files). I was amazed — I hadn’t even opened the 
documentation. It was TOO EASY! There had 
to be a catch. These AUTOLOGONs couldn’t 
possibly do what I wanted them to; either there 
was going to be some problem or I would spend 
hours debugging or trying to patch in what I 
needed. I decided to put it to the test with a quick 
script (oops, AUTOLCXjON) that would contact 
CompuServe, log me on, and gather some quick 
stcK'k quotes for major players in the high tech 
stcK'k market. 

I ran my AUTOLOGON. The program 
dialed up CompuServe (a nationally recog- 
nized BBS). So far so good. Since I couldn’t 
remember some of the prompts that appear in 
certain sections (CompuServe is MASSIVE), 
I needed to customize my Autologon to 
remember them for me. 1 didn't even have to 
slow down. 1 pulled down the Online .script 
editor and punched in a couple of changes ON 
THE FLY! I didn’t need to save my entire 
session to disk and review it to .see which 
commands worked. I didn’t need to shell to 
DOS to make changes. I just pulled down a 
menu. The simplicity was astonishing! 

To write my script I used four different 
function keys: [F3] (Preset), [F4] (Call), [F5] 
(Wait For), and [F6] (Send). Each Eunction Key 
brought down a menu and I made a choice from 
each menu (choices are in CAPS) by clicking 
on the appropriate button. Each menu choice 
brought up a box of possible commands (com- 
mands chosen are in italics) 

From [F3] (Preset) choose SET 
PARAMETERS. I set 2400 BaadSNl XON — 
you might need to different parameters. 

Now I chose MOUSE, and set the mouse for 
Offio increase the operating speed while online. 

My PROTOCOL was already set for 
Xmodem CRC. Since this is a good all-purpose 
protocol, I left the setting alone. 

From [F4] (Call) I chose CALL and typed in 
my local CompuServe access number, includ- 
ing the ‘9’ I need to dial from my office to get 
an outside line. 

From |F5] (Wait For) I chose WAIT 
SECONDS and typed in 2. This told my com- 

puter to wait 2 seconds to receive any com- 
mands sent to it from CompuServe before it sent 
anything else. 

From |F6| (Send) I chose ^ as a command 
to send to the CompuServe Computer. 

Now I chose WAIl' SECONDS 2 again to 
give CompuServe time to send its next string. 

I went back to |F6| (Send) and chose 
STRING, then entered my C’ompuServe ID 
followed by the commands ^M and ^J. 

I inserted another WAIT SECONDS 2 com- 
mand to receive the next CompuServe prompt, 
then chose SEND again, then STRING, and 
typed in my CompuServe password, followed 
by the ^M and '^J commands. 

Next 1 chose WAIT FOR, then STRING, and 
entered the next prompt Compu.serve would 

I then entered a few WAIT FOR and SEND 
commands that would take me to the place on 
the CompuServe board where I could get the 
stock quotes I wanted automatically: 









The only things I had to type were the phone 
number, my ID, my password, the stock issues 
I wanted to look at, and the word OFF to exit 
CompuServe. The rest was entered with simple 
point and click menu selections from On-Line! 

If you have Sierra’s On-Line, a modem, and 
a CompuServe executive option subscription, 
feel free to try this script out. 

Maybe we’ll see you next time ONLINE! 


Would You Enjoy: 

» Conversation with fellow gamers 

» Flash Attack — America’s hottest 
new BBS game 

» Multi-line player adventure games 

» Great downloads (including demos 
of Sierra games) 

Then give us a call! 

(213) 326-99^3 24 hours a day 

(Not affiliated with Sierra on-Line Inc.) 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I -900-370-KLUE / Inside I -900-370-5 1 ! 3 

Page 40 

Sierra News Magazine 




The follow'in^ is a reprint of a review of 
Sierra*s On-Line^ written by David Stanton 
for the March 1990 issue of Compute! 
Reprinted with permission from Compute! 
Publications, Inc.. P.O. Box 5406, Greensboro, 
NC 27403 © 1990. All rights resetxed. 

Few computer experiences can surpass 
the excitement of telecommunications. Un- 
fortunately, few experiences can be as mad- 
dening and difficult at the same time. Select- 
ing compatible hardware and software, 
configuring everything properly, and con- 
necting with even the simplest local BBS can 
often be more of a challenge than most ptUen- 
tial telecommunicators are willing to tackle. 

Sierra's On-Line is trying to change that. 
It’s billed as the easiest to use modem 
software ever! 

Sierra’s uninitimidating manual is 72 pages 
of clear, understandable prose. Its intrcxluction 
promises that beginners will be telecom- 
municating in less thiin an hour. I started my 
timer and began following directions. 

Backing up the unprotected originals took 
about four minutes using DOS's DISK- 
COPY command. Reading directions and in- 
stalling On-Line on my hard drive required 
five minutes more. DeskMate users could 
install the program onto their desktops in 
about the same time. Alternatively, On-Line 
can be run directly from lloppies without 
DeskMate. Since the package includes both 
3-1/2 and 5-1/4 inch sizes, virtually any 
functioning MwS-IX)S system will do. Just 
select the proper drive, type ON LINK, and 
wait a minute or so. Total time from box 
opeining tt) first glimpse: ten minutes. 

fhose who already understand Tandy’s 
DeskMate interface will feel instantly at 
ease; others will catch on quickly. Fither 
way, new users will want to read about the 
program commands and experiment a little, 
using dialog boxes to set phone numbers, 
selecting communications ports, and such. 
Don’t change anything yet, though. With 
On-Line's preset configuration -COM port 
1 , 1 200 baud, eight data bits, one stop bit- 

the program should work OK for most situa- 
tions. 1 decided to save fine-tuning for later. 
Running time: 20 minutes. 

At this point, you can follow the manual’s 
instructions for calling Sierra’s own bulletin 
board system (BBS) in California, or you can 
attempt to contact a local BBS. Caution: 
Attempting to contact local BBSs without 
first becoming familiar with a few technical 
things can be hazardous to your sanity. For a 
gentler introduction to telecomputing, call 
Sierra’s board. It’s a convenient way to get 
your feet wet. 

Wtihin 45 minutes of starting my times, I 
began downloading a demo version of 
Sierra’s Leisure Suit Larry from its BBS. For 
those who need special help, the board 
provides a customer-service section. 

On an Ease-of-Use scale of 1 - 1 0, On-Line 
rated a 10 in my unscientific test. I don’t 
know how general purpose terminal software 
for MS-DOS users could be made simpler. 
But what about power and features? 

On-Line suppc^rts a maximum data-trans- 
mission speed of 9600 baud, fast enough to 

handle the most efficient phone-line connec- 
tion but a bit slow for direct exchanges using 
a null modem. The program provides an 
easy-to-use AutoLogOn Editor for creating 
automatic log-on files. Review Mode allows 
users to scroll through the program’s 
memory buffer to find stuff that scrolled off 
the screen. In Host Mode, your computer can 
await calls from remote terminals and 
answer automatically. 

For CompuServe’s CB Simulator or Chat 
mode on your local BBS, try On-Line's Con- 
ference Mode, a split-window arrangement 
that separates your outgoing mesaages from 
incoming ones. The program also handles 
ASCII, several variations of SMODEM and 
YMODEM, and CompuServe’s Quick B-h 

Overall, Sierra's On-Line offers an attrac- 
tive blend of simplicity and power. Ad- 
vanced users will find it a solid performer for 
regular use. Beginners should have little dif- 
ficulty making it work. If you’ve been avoid- 
ing telecommunications because of its dif- 
ficulty, you’re out of excuses. 

Sierras On-Line is available for MS-DOS computers with 5 1 2K, $69.95, and can be purchased through your local software dealer or by calling our 
order numbe r, I -8(X)-326-6654. ^ ^ 

Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6S3-S9S9 Orders I -SOO-3 26-6654 

Page 4 1 

The Trifid Nebuia in Sagittarius (M20) 
is just one of the fascinating fuiTcoior 
photos avaiiabie in EZCosmos. 

The sky piot dispiays the stars, sun, moon, 
pianets, consteiiation iines, and many 
other ceiestiai objects. 

Journoy through space and time, 
exploring the vistas of the Universe. 

Escape the boundaries of our solar 
system and travel past binary suns 
and stars clouds of the Milky Way to 
the globular clusters and galaxies 

Return to Earth and discover the paths 
of the planets, from close-ups of solar 
eclipses and lunar occultations to 
planetary conjunctions and retrograde 

Observe the skies overhead from 
560 international cities or anywhere 
on Earth, for any time period from 
4000 B.C. to A.D. 10000. 

EZCosmos is your complete guide 
to the entire celestial sphere. 

©1 990 Astrosoft, Inc. “EZCosmos” is a trademark of Astrosoft, Inc, 

"With its intuitive interface, speedy 
performance, and enormous range of 
information, EZCosmos is an astro- 
nomical program that may interest 
the widest range users. ” 

— PC Magazine 

Universe for only $49.95 

ordering information 


Happy to he a part of the Sierra 
family, Jejf Tunnel I (1) and 
Damon Slye (r) founders of 
Ore^on-hased Dynamix, Inc. 

hy Marti McKenna 

n March 27, 1990, 
Sierra announced 
intent to acquire a 
small but excep- 
tionally innovative 
software company 
— Dynamix, Inc. 
The two companies 
had been in close contact since the 
licensing by Sierra of Dynamix’s 3Space 
technology {a powerful 3 -dimensional 
modeling and display system, developed 
hy Damon Slye, head of Research and 
Development at Dynamix), in mid 1989. 
Ken Williams thinks they’re going places, 
;md called the acquisition a strategic move: 
‘T//C Dynamix technologies not only 
provide superior entertainment products 

Slimmer I WO 

24 Hour Sierra KBS - (20V) 6X3-4463 

Customer Service (2W) 6S.i-S9S9 Orders / -HOO-326-6654 

Pane 43 


Arcticfox used a new version of 
the 3Space system selling over 100,000 copies 
and taking home the SPA Gold Award. 

Jor todays I'ottipiUn s, hnf oljcf superior pliitforni for the clevelopnieut 
oj optmil based prodm ts for the ne\t generation of eomputer systems." 

When you lake a look al ihe reeenl clireelioii of Dynamix's Researeh tK: 
Developmenl leant, (here eati lx* no tlouhl ol ifie aeeuraey ol Ken's ohserva- 
lion; like Sierra, Dynainix has seen the lulure ol inleraelive enterlaininenl, 
and its name is C'l) ROM. In addilion U) the eommereial pholoizraphie 
equi[tmenl, eolor (tholo developing lah and eolor iligili/ers already in use al 
Dynamix, Iheir Image Ihoduelion deparlmenl now boasls a lull filming 
siudio wilh wliieh ihey inlend lo lake lull advanlage of llie higfi qualily 
graphic eapabililies ('I)-ROM lechnology will bring lo ihe induslry. 

Dynamix l^residenl Jell I'unnell feels lhal ihe alliance is “...a lerrific 
pooling of lalenls...ihrough our work over ihe Iasi monihs wilh Siena we 
have found lhal our developmenl praclices and ihe markeling philosopfiies 
of our l wo companies are very similar. I believe ihe I wo companies will work 
very well logellier." While Sierra and Dynamix will indeed work logelher in 
many areas, and a greal deal of ihe ‘ptxtling of lalenls' will surely lake place, 
Dynamix will remain a separale enlily, conlinuing lo operale prelly much as 
usual from iheir weslern Oregon offices. 

Dynamix, hu based in ihe beauliful communily of Kugene, Oregon, 
was founded as Dytiatnix Software Development in 1984 by Jeff runnell, 
owner of a Hugene soflware siore, and Damon Slye, a Universily of Oregon 
compuler science major. Like Sierra, Dynamix, Inc. speciali/es in enlerlain- 
menl soflware for high end home compulers. The company's firsl producl 
was an arcade game called Stellar 7, ihe firsl producl to use Dynamix's 
proprietary 3Space technology. The game had a big cull following — in fact, 
it is reported lo be the favorite compuler game of author Tom Clancy (Hunt 
hOr Red Oetoher). Next, Dynamix published Sword of Kadash, li ‘Dungeons 
and Dragons' type advenlure, which was lo be iheir last original game for a 

In 1985, Dynamix Software Development signed on as a developer for 
Electronic Arts, and subsequently designed Arcticfox. the first game 
released for the Commodore Amiga. Arcticfox used a new version of the 
3Spaee system, and was an instant hit, .selling over I ()(),()(X) copies and taking 
home the SPA's Gold Award. Dynamix went on to develop such popular 
games as Skyfox II ( for Electronic Arts). Pete Rose Pennant Fever and Mech 
Warrior (for the Activision label). In September of 1986, Dynamix Soflware 
Developmenl became Dynamix, Inc. In two years, the company had grown 
from 2 lo 15 employees, was incorporated, and had moved lo a building that 
would contain their growing employee base. It was a smart move, because 
by the summer of 1989, iheir numbers had grown to 26, and they needed 
every last hand; that was the year they published David Wolf: Secret A^ent 
and A-K) Tank Killer - ihe firsl two products lo be designed, developed and 
prcxiuced completely in-house, and the firsl lo bear the Dynamix label. 

The A- 10 Thunderbolt II (aka Wartho^) is known as ‘the most devas- 
tating and indestructible ground support plane ever built'. It's ugly (hence 
the nickname), and it isn't terribly fast, but it can out-maneuver the fastest 
MIG, and its 3()inrn cannon can reduce an enemy tank to so much scrap metal. 
They say it ‘Flys Low and Hits Hard', and you can take that lo the hank. 

One of the original Stellar 7 yame screens. The first 
prod net to itse the Dynamix d Space teehtioloyy. 

The I990's version of Stellar 7 usiny 25b colors, 
digitized \ (jA y^raphies and phenomenal sound effects. 

Pa^tc 44 

24 Hour Sierra Mint Lines 

Outside California 1 -9()()-d7()-KLCE Inside I -9()()-d70-5 1 1 d 

Sierra News Maitazine 


The A-10 Thunderbolt II (aka Warthog) 
is known as “the most devastating and 
indestructible ground support plane ever built.” 

If that sounds like your kind of flying machine, then this is your kind 
of flight simulator. 4 -/f> Tank Killer puis you in the cockpit of this big mean 
hunk of steel — an actual digitized A- 1 0 cockpit with an amazingly realistic 
instrument panel including working gauges, and a strategic mapping system 
that keeps you informed of enemy movement. 

As Captain Buck Ryan of the 23rd Tactical Fighter Wing (better known 
as the Flying Tigers), you’ll fly 7 missions accompanied by your smart-alec 
copilot, Jake Styles, and usually one or two wingmen. You’ll experience 
complex character interaction, including constant feedback from Jake, and 
frequent radio traffic in the form of messages from your wingmen, your 
Commanding Officer, even distress calls from ground troops in trouble. Each 
mission has its own objective, which you’ll learn about in a briefing with 
Commander Cord, your tough C.O. He’ll brief you again after the mission 
to let you know how you did, give you a pointer or two, and fill you in on 
further enemy activity (a glimpse of missions yet to come!). 

This realistic environment is enhanced by full, 256 color VGA support. 
Ad Lib and Roland MT-32 supported music and sound effects, intensely real 
animated explosions, and a war that continues regardless of your participa- 
tion. Dynamix recently released Simulation Module #1, an add-on with 7 
new missions. Just in case you survive your first 7 — / didn’t. 

James Bond, \ook out — here comes Wolf — David Wolf — and he’s 
bad. He’s hot, he’s c(X)l, he’s smooth with the ladies and rough with the bad 
guys. David Wolf is an American secret agent, and he’s the best we’ve got. 

Wolf’s next mission is going to take the best he's got. Viper, possibly the 
most deadly crime force in the world, has stolen a top-secret U.S. stealth 
fighter, and with it the fighter’s designer, the beautiful and brilliant Dr. Kelly 
O’Neal. Wolf must overcome impossible odds to recover the jet, and Dr. 
O’Neal, before Viper can carry out their threat to nuke the U.S. capitol. 

The Dynamix ad for Secret Agent reads ‘7/’,v unlike anything you've 
seen..." , and they mean it. The beautifully digitized and animated story (using 
live actors and real sets!) surrounds five action-packed simulation experien- 
ces, for an interactive suspense-thriller unlike anything Tve seen. As I 
watched the story unfold, I had the opportunity to battle Viper as the pilot of 
an uzi-equipped hang-glider, to drive Wolf’s high-tech, fully loaded sports 
car in one deadly car chase after another, to experience a potentially fatal 
free-fall from 15,(KK) feet, to parachute drop onto a speeding truck, and 
finally, to pilot the elusive stealth jet and engage in an intensely frustrating 
battle against a heat seeking missile and several venomous Viper jets before 
emerging a hero. Much of this action I didn’t survive the first time around, 
but Dynamix ’s nifty VCR Interface allowed me to ‘skip’ back to each 
simulation .scene and try it again. Each event effected the story, and I was 
treated to .several possible endings as I played, some less desirable than others 
— like watching the White House go up in a cloud of radioactive! 

As of this writing. Sierra has begun di.stributing Secret Agent and A-IO 
Tank Killer, and is looking forward to doing the same for three new products 
Dynamix plans to release this year. 



Summer 1990 

24 H(Hir Sierra BBS - (209) 6K3-4463 

C ustomer Service (209) 6S3 -89S9 Orders 1 -800-326-6654 

Page 45 

“A terrific pooling of talents...! believe 
the two companies will work very well together.” 

Dynamix President 
Jeff Tunnel] 


This 256 color, digitized llight simulator is a thrilling historical recrea- 
tion of night during W.W.I. In Red Baron, you'll fly up to 12 different, 
accurately modeled aircraft on either the German or the European side of the 
war, against realistic enemy intelligence unrivaled in home computer simula- 
tions. Dynamix’s 3Space’"" 3-D creates a convincing environment using 
breathtaking VGA graphics, and the exciting original soundtrack takes you 
back in time as you battle or even become the Red Baron! 


A decidedly I990’s version of Dynamix’s first game, this time with full 
256 color, digitized VGA graphics and phenomenal sound effects. Take 
command of the Raven, an intergalactic war tank, and battle enemies on 
seven different worlds on a mission that puts the fate of planet Earth in your 
hands. All the excitement of the original Stellar 7, in a truly state-of-the-art 
arcade game. 


TTiis futuristic, private -eye adventure is a totally new type of interactive 
game. As a 21st century private investigator, you’ll wander a city gripped by 
evil as you attempt to unravel the darkest, most deadly mystery of your career. 
Using a completely ‘point and click’ interface, this game lets you explore a 
real-time environment as you pick up and use objects, talk with other 
characters, solve intricate game puzzles and do battle in numerous arcade 
sequences throughout the game. The product of Dynamix’s new GDS (Game 
Development System), Dragon combines animation, interaction, puzzle- 
solving, cinematic storytelling techniques and Dynamix’s VCR Interface'' 
for an action/adventure game unlike any you’ve seen. 

We’re proud to welcome Dynamix, Inc. to the Sierra family. Here’s 
looking forward to a long and mutually prosperous relationship with the 
common goal of bringing you the best in home entertainment at the high 
standard of quality you’ve come to expect. 

HEART OF CHINA (Working title) 

High adventure comes to your computer screen in Heart of China. The 
action begins in revolutionary China, 1930. As reluctant hero “Lucky” Jake 
Masters, you are hired to rescue Kate Lomax, the kidnapped daughter of a 
wealthy American investor. Held by the leader of a war-tom feudal state, her 
life is now in your hands. In your mission to reunite father and daughter, you 
enlist the aid of a street-wise ninja, Chi, and set out to storm the kidnapper’s 
fortress and resue the heroine. You’ll travel through such exotic locations as 
Hong Kong, Katmandu, Istanbul and Paris in an adventure that spans the 
entire European continent. 

With an entirely “point-and-click” interface, breathtaking graphics, 
character interaction, puzzle solving, action simulations, cinematic cutaways 
and meanwhile screens, Heart of China takes adventure gaming to all new 
levels of excitement and challenge! 

Red Baron 

The Rise of the Dragon 

Heart of China 

Page 46 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California 1-900-370-KLUE / Inside 1-900-370-5113 

Sierra News Magazine 




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The original King^s Quest and Mixed-Up Mother Goose 
rewritten for SCI 

S ierra is pleased to announce that two of its most popular and best-selling products of the last six years have now been rewritten 
to take full advantage of Sierra’s new SCI technology. 

King^s Quest / — new and old Mixed-Up Mother Goose — new and old 

Improvements to these titles include 
new, improved higher resolution graphics 
and better animation. Also, optional music 
card support has been added for Adlib, 
Roland MT-32 and LAPC-I, Brown- 
Weighs' CiameBlasler and SoundBlaster 
cards, and the Tandy's standard three voice 
fiuisic outpul. 

File new versions of King's Quest and 
Mixed-Up Mother Goose require 5\2K 
and a C'PU of al least SMH/ is recom- 
mended. The products support all major 
graphics cards, but owners of CGA may 
want to upgrade to EGA before they 
upgrade to the new versions of these 
products. CGA support is in black and 
white only. Suggested retail prices are 
$39.95 for Mixed-Up Mother Goose, and 
$.59.95 lor King's Quest /. 


I f you current ly own King ’.v Quest and/or Mixed-Up Mother Goose. Sierra offers 
a special upgrade policy for you. Follow these instructions for your new version: 

» For King's Quest /, send $20 check or money order (to cover the cost of the 
new upgrade and shipping and handling) and either the disk #I or the front 
cover of your documentation (new documentation will be forwarded to you). 

» For Mixed Up Mother Goose, send $ 1 5, check or money order (to cover the 
cost of the new upgrade and shipping and handling) and either the disk #1 or 
the Iront cover of your documentation (new documentation will be forwarded 
to you). 

Be sure to include your return address and whether you want 3.5” or 5.25” disks 
with your order. Send to: Sierra, ATTN: Fullfillment, P.O. Box 4S5, Coarsegold 
CA,93(>44. If sending via UPS, send to Sierra, Attn: Fullfillment, 4(X)33 Sierra Way, 
Oakhurst, CA 93644. 

Summer !9W 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6SJ-S9S9 Orders / -SOO-326-6654 

Page 5 / 


Thexder — the Japanese and U.S. Best-seller Moves to the 
Macintosh and Macintosh II 

IX'spilc ihc lack o( Sierra's SC'I prognuii- 
ming language for Mac until September, 
Sierra's commitment to games lor Macin- 

I ^ ^ ^ ^ 

on MAC II 

tosh begins with new Thexder, an exciting 
action game Sierra found in Japan and has 
transported to America. 

Built around the popular toy concept of 
the “folding robot," the main character in the 

Thexder action game 
is a automaton that 
can change from a 
Robot to a jet-plane, 
and back again, in the 
touch of a button. 
Thexder offers IS 
different levels of hot 
and heavy arcade 
action, and features 
a hot and heavy 
soundtrack that will 
draw you into the 

The suggested 
retail price for Thexder 
is $34.95. 

THEXBtR ♦ ><13 p'lo^" " 

Drawing submitted by Ben Hyde, Michigan. Age 16. 


Leisure Suit Larry 3, Hero’s Quest and new The Colonel’s Bequest 
ship for the Amiga. 

It would put it mildly to say that Space 
Quest III was Sierra’s largest selling 
release of all time. The reaction that game 
players have had to Sierra games created 
under SCI has been tremendous, and three 
more new ones are on the way or in Amiga 
owners hands now. 

Our bestselling designer, Roberta Wil- 
liams, offers Amiga owners a different sort 

of entertainment experience with the 
release of The Colonel's Bequest, the 
industry’s first interactive play. Loosely 
based on a popular stage production called 
Tamara that has been playing in the Los 
Angeles Area for years [now starring Shel- 
ly Hack, of former Charlie's Angels fame], 
this combination adventure game/murder 
mystery and play puts the player in the role 
of an innocent bystander caught in a com- 
bination family reunion and slaughter. 
Definitely not for the weak of heart.... 

For those Amiga owners looking for 
something completely different in the way 
of Sierra offerings, new Hero's Quest mer- 
ges the best features of both Fantasy Role- 
playing and computer adventure formats. 
Choose from a fighter, a mage or a thief as 
your onscreen incarnation, and try to save 
the town of Spielberg. 

Last but not least is the long awaited 
Leisure Suit Larry 3 — Passionate Patti in 
Pursuit of the Pulsating Pectorals for the 
Amiga. Third in the ever-popular Leisure 
Suit Larry series, by Al Lowe, this 
hilarious adult adventure is the first Sierra 
game to allow you to switch roles in mid 
game! Become Larry Laffer and Pas- 
sionate Patti in an outrageous adventure in 
the steamy jungles of Nontoonyt Island. 

Page 52 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I -900-370-KLUE ! Inside 1-900-370-5113 

Sierra News Magazine 



May 1990 

.June 1990 

July 1990 

Code name: Iceman 


The Colonel's Bequest 



Conquests of Camelot 


Hero's Quest 



Hoyle's Book of Games 


Keeping Up With Jones 


King's Quest IV 


Leisure Suit Larry HI 


Manhunter: San Francisco 


Manhunter: New York 

Apple IIE/IIC 

Police Quest // 


PLEASE NOTE: Computer software development is a very inexact 
science. The projected ship dates above are provided for general infor- 
mation only, and should not be depended on. Sierra On-Line, Inc., and 
publishers of computer software in general, have a very poor track 
record of meeting projected shipping schedules. 

Sierra also has other projects pending. This shipping schedule includes 
only those projects that arc sufficiently advanced for us to feel com- 
fortable projecting a shipping date. 

"pce,5'\ cient 

8eor(j£ LOtXsViiO^'^'Oo 

"And I also 

coLcrrtey loouJcl 
be ujhole loT 
iF S\tcctK 

' J 

Cartoon submitted by David A. Handlong, Arizona. Age 12 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6S3-S9S9 Orders I -HOO-320-6654 

Take A Shower 

With Larryi 

For the first time ever, 
you can have Larry all to yourself! 

Dry off in comfort with this colorful, heavy-duty, 
giant Leisure Suit Larry bath towel. Luxuriously 

» large, Larry’s perfect for a night at the hot tub, 
H or just for hitting the shower. 

If You’ll be the envy of all your friends as you 
wrap up with everbody’s favorite good-time guy. 

# , Get one for a pal ! 

To order, use order form on page 59 

Summer 1990 

Pa^e 53 


Software People: 

An Insider’s Look at the Personal 
Computer Software Industry 

The Jbllowinii* is an excerpt from the hook 
Software People: An Insider's Look at the 
Personal Computer Software Industry hy 
Douglas G. Carlston, published in I9H5 hy 
Simon & Schuster and reprinted with permis- 
sion. Mr. Carlston is President and co-founder 
of Hroderhund Software . lie called one section 
of his hook 'The Brotherhood" — the nick- 
name for an informal association of friends in 
the software industry. A portion of that chapter 
is reprinted here. 

T here truly was a sense of brother- 
hood among the California game 
companies, but that didn't mean 
we always shared our trade secrets with 
one another. Sirius, as the “leading com- 
pany,” seldom shared information with the 
rest of us, although we socialized together. 
The Sirius people saw us as competition, 
and they wanted to win. Broderbund's 
relationship with Ken and Roberta Wil- 
liams, however, extended much further. 
Although we wouldn’t have expected 
anyone to give us information that had 
been obtained at great cost, like the secrets 
of the Atari video game machine, we 
helped one another when we could. 

Ken and Roberta Williams’s com- 
pany — On-Line Systems, or, as it was 
called later. Sierra On-Line — constitutes 
its own software empire up there in the 
gold rush country of the Sierra foothills. 
Ken Williams himself is a major part of 
anybody’s history of the software industry. 
He has cooked up and implemented more 
ideas over the past four years than anyone 
else in the industry, and, as an innovator, 
he has no match. 

Ken is a big, amiable, slightly sloppy- 
looking man with a congenial twinkle in 
his blue eyes. His wife and business 
partner, Roberta, is tiny in comparison 
with him, and in contrast to his aggressive 
and outgoing style she has to push through 
her natural shyness in order to speak out 
on matters she feels are important. She has 
strong opinions and is less carefree than 

Ken. Theirs is a combination that works — 
she channels his raw energy and focuses 
his creative ambitions. Although Ken is 
the programming talent in the family, they 
might never have started their own busi- 
ness if Roberta hadn't taken the initiative 
to create their first product. 

Without Roberta acting as a rudder, Ken 
would probably be over his head in projects, 

“Ken Williams 
himself is a major 
part of anybody’s 
history of the 
software industry. 
He has cooked up 
and implemented 
more ideas over 
the past four 
years than anyone 
else in the 
industry, and, as 
an innovator, he 
has no match.” 

instead of Just up to his neck. A short list 
of his achievements — and attempted 
achievements — is startling. He started the 
distribution company that later turned into 
Softsel, the world’s largest distributor of 
computer software. He and Roberta added 
the first graphics to adventure games and 
co-founded On-Line Systems. He co- 
founded one of the first mail-order busi- 
nesses, Calsoft. He co-founded one of the 

earliest magazines. Soft line. He wrote one 
of the first game generators that could be 
used by a nonprogrammer. He was one of 
the very first publishers to lake in venture 
capital to accelerate the growth of his busi- 
ness. And he got into licensing deals long 
b>efore most of the other cottage publishers 
dreamed that such marketing activities could 
be within their fanancial reach. 

As an example of his continual explora- 
tion of new possibilities, one day in 1982 
Ken called me and said that he had a 
proposition for me to consider. How 
would I like to fonn a company with him 
to put computers and computer software 
into hotel rooms? He had done a lot of 
thinking about it and suggested that we 
meet in Los Angeles to try to whip the idea 
into shape. 

So I flew down to L.A. while Ken and 
Roberta drove down from their Sierra 
foothills headquarters in their big pickup. 
They were buying a motorboat and were 
planning to haul it back home the next day. 
We all went to a steak house and talked about 
the plan. What emerged was a blueprint for 
an intriguing new business that might permit 
us to profile our software products for a lot 
of bored travelers. However, the whole idea 
depended on finding the right person to mn 
the business. Ken clearly didn't have the 
time, and neither did I. When we were un- 
able to find the right manager for the busi- 
ness, we let it drop, but the episode gave me 
a sense of the way Ken’s creative mind 
works. He not only comes up with an ex- 
traordinaiy number of ideas, but he pushes 
and prods them along until a lot of them 
come to fruition. 

But our discussion in L.A. wasn’t the 
first time we had talked about Joining for- 
ces. In the summer of 198 1 , Ken extended 
invitations to about fifty people — includ- 
ing Gary, me, and our sister Cathy — in the 
microcomputer industry to Join him on a 
Whitewater rafting trip down the 
Stanislaus River, a beautiful, exciting. 

Page 54 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California J-900-370-KLUE / Inside I -900-370-5 J 1 3 

Sierra News Magazine 

Counter-clockw ise from left front: Ken Williams, Gary Kofler (Se^a), Doug Carlston, Judy Rabin, 
John lieuer (Roberta's father). River Guide, DJ. Williams, Roberta Williams. 

“Why don’t you lake a look,” he said. 

Sierra riverway that would be buried 
forever by a new dam only a few months 
after our trip. That trip was the first time I 
had spent any time with Ken or Roberta 
other than at a trade show, and it was a 
pleasure to see them away from the com- 
petitive pressure. Of course, it was impos- 
sible for fifty computerists to go anywhere 
without talking shop, and the river guides 
frequently had to shout at us: forget 

computers. Look around you!” 

The river guides had a point. The river 
was extraordinarily beautiful. We had water 
fights. We swam and ate and spent our time 
in honest sunlight — a refreshing change 
from being squirreled away in musty offices 
or basking in the midnight glow of computer 
screens. Ken rode down some of the rapids 
while standing on the bow of his raft and 
holding the bowline like a pair of reins. At 
other times we all swam through the rapids, 
shrieking like kids in the ice-cold water. And 
in the evening when everyone gathered 
around the campfire, Ken and I wandered off 
and speculated about whether or not we 
should merge our two companies. It was 
gcKKl fun. What was more impc^rlant to us 
than the possibility of an actual merger was 
our willingness to consider it in the first 
place. In effect, the merger discussions were 
a way of saying to each other: “I like you and 
respect your business and your abilities.” We 
also shared a desire to be important, and if 
merging our companies could make us im- 
portant in the eyes of the world, that might 
be reason to at least consider it. llie merger 
never happened because of geography (we 
didn’t want to move to the Sierra foothills 
and they didn’t want to move to San Rafael) 
and because there were no real benefits to 
such a measure (our companies were too 
similar). The competitive sides of our per- 
sonalities were never too deeply sub- 
merged either. On the second day of the 
trip, we came to a place in the river where 
the water was deep and smooth, and cliffs 
rose up above the river banks. Ken 
hollered: “Stop the boats! We’re going to 
go up there and jump off,” and he went 
tearing up the cliff. Lots of people fol- 
lowed and started Jumping into the river 
from the cliff. But when I got to the top, 
Ken and Roberta were still standing there, 
looking down. Ken came over to me and 
said: “I've made a big mistake. How would 
you like to do me a favor, Doug? Why 
don't we walk down to the boat. If you go 
with me, nol'H)dy will think anything of it.” 
“We can jump off this. It's not so bad,” 

1 replied. 

It did seem like a long way down, but 
everyone else was Jumping off and surviv- 
ing. By this time my sister Cathy had 
Joined us. Cathy is not very afraid of 
water — when we were growing up in 
Iowa, she was voted outstanding swimmer 
in the state two years running. Further- 
more, she is nine years younger than I am 
and was then still too young to have any 
sense of her own mortality. She was clearly 
ready to Jump off the cliff. 

I said to Ken, “Well Cathy will take one 
of your hands and I'll lake the other, and 
I'll grab Roberta's hand and we’ll Jump off 
together. What do you think?” “Okay,” he 
said. We linked hands and headed for the 
cliff’s edge until Ken put on the brakes. 
“I’ll do it next lime,” he .said. 

So Cathy and I Jumped off. It was lun but 
not so much fun that we wanted to try it 
again, .so we didn't go back up. Eventually 
everybexiy Jumped, but Ken and Roberta 
climbed back down. Ken said, “I think my 
reach exceeded my grasp. I pushed myself a 
little further ihiui I was ready to hiuidle.” It 
was rude to leave them up there like that. But 
it is a fair analogy to our business relation- 

ship. We are friends, but the competitive 
spirit is never too far away. I doubt that any 
of us would do anything that would harm 
any of the others, since their opinions of us 
are important. But we all like to win, and 
if the other falters, we aren’t likely to wait 
too long for him to catch up. 

In the business arena, when Ken and 
Roberta came out with their low-priced 
word-processing program, Homeword, he 
called us to bet that it would displace 
Broderbund’s word-processing program. 
Bank Street Writer, on the charts. In fact, 
our vice president of sales and marketing 
at that lime, Tom Measday (who is now 
president of Avant Garde), bet Ken $500 
and lost it three weeks later when Bank 
Street Writer temporarily fell to the num- 
ber two position behind Homeward on the 
Softsel chart. 

But if Ken and Roberta weren’t 
gamblers at heart, there never would have 
been an On-Line Systems in the first place. 
They would still be in the San Fernando 
Valley, living off Ken’s earnings as a 
programmer, instead of residing in a 
mansion in the Sierra fcxnhills running 
their own software empire. 

Summer 19W 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6SJ-S9S9 Orders I -S()0-326-6654 

Page 55 

The Roland MT-32 is perhaps the finest sound 
mcxiule available for home computers. Its 32 
voice synthesizer features 128 preset sounds for 
the most enhanced game experience possible 
today. EASE software package, included, is 
designed to help you compose and arrange your 
own songs. 

Package includes: Roland MT-32 Sound 
Module, MIDI proce.ssing unit, MIDI cable, 
EASE songmaker software, EASE demo. 


Roland’s new lAPC-l Sound Card is a full-size 
computer card with a full 32-voice synthesizer. 
All the music and sound capacity of the Roland 
MT-32 on a card. (MT-32 compatible.) 

Package includes Roland LAPC-J Sound Card 
and two 8’ speaker cables. 


Creative Labs’ SOUND B I ASTER card starts 
with an AdLib compatible 1 1 voice FM syn- 
thesizer, then adds 12 C/MS and Game Blaster 
compatible stereo voices for maximizing the 
listening fun of games and other software. Digi- 
tally samples voice and other sounds. Includes 
MIDI interface and joystick port. (Compatible 
with Adlib and Game Blaster.) 

Package includes speaker cable, talking parrot 
demo. Intelligent Organ music software and 
song disks (no musical knowledge required). 
Talking Parrot interactive speech demo, VoxKit 
sound design software. 


The AdLib Personal Computer Music System 
makes your computer come alive with music and 
sound. Half-size card featuring an 1 1 -voice syn- 
thesizer, volume control and audio jack. Listen 
to your favorite games, or compose your own 
music, even if you’ve never written music 
before. The original sound card, and still the best 

Package includes Visual Composer software. 
SPIO sequencer, and Jukebox playback pro- 

%2\9.9SXard Alone $149.95 

And don’t forget to check out the special offers 

on the back cover of this issue! 


RO. BOX 485, COARSEGOLD, CA 93614 

FOR FASTER SERVICE CALL 800-326-6654 (U.S.) 

From outside the liruted Siate^ vail 209-683-4468 
P.M iPST) Fridqr 


Sierra products are available in over 
10,000 retail outlets in the U.S. and 
Canada, and are distributed internation- 
ally in over 20 countries. Your local 
software retailer is the quickest and most 
convenient way to find the Sierra 
products you want. 

If you can't find the Sierra software 
product you're looking for at your local 
software store, you can order it directly 
by mail or by phone: 


Please fill out all information on the 
order form completely. Include your 
check or money order (payable in U.S. 
funds only), or credit card information. 
Please do not send cash. No COD orders 
are accepted. Those ordering from out- 
side the Continental U.S. and Canada, 
and those wishing to receive their 
products by a priority shipping method, 
should note the special instructions 

For Canada 

For priority air shipments into 
Canada, minimum charge is $30.00 
for the first Sierra product plus $3.00 
per additional item at time of initial 

In the Continental U.S. 

See the chart for shipping and 
handling on the last page of this order 
form. These charges include in- 
surance and reasonable packing 
materials for shipments of fragile 
components. On music card orders, 
checks must clear before order is 

Outside the Continental U. S. 

Our International Shipping 
Policy applies to hardware items to 
be shipped outside the continental 
SHIPPING for more details. 

Ml| IM1| MM| 


NOTE KE(;AKI)IN(; 2nd 









Sierra Tour T-Shirt — $9.95 


Please call (800) 326-6654 (United States) or (209) 683-4468 
(outside U.S.) between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. Pacific Standard Time. To 
order by phone, please have your credit card (Visa, Mastercard, 
American Express, and Discover) and order information ready. We 
cannot accept COD or other forms of payment. 

Those ordering from outside the Continental U.S. and Canada, and 
those wishing to receive their products by a priority shipping method, 
should note the special instructions and charges as itemized below. 

(For customer service, call (209) 683-8989 , 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. 
Pacific Standard Time, Monday through Friday.) 


Regular shipping and handling methods for Sierra products are 
delivery by U.S. mail or UPS Ground for the Continental U.S., and 
delivery by U.S. mail for delivery to APO, FPO and into Canada. Regular 
shipping is free within the continental U.S. and Canada except for 
hardware items (see SHIPPING HARDWARE ITEMS). 

Within the Continental U.S. 

I or 2nd Day shipments within the Continental U.S. the charge is $5.00 
for the first Sierra product, plus $ 1 .(X) per additional Sierra product at time 
of initial shipment. Shipping on hardware items is separate and listed 

For Ala.ska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico 

For priority shipments the charge is $6.(K) for the first Sierra product, 
and $2.(K) for each additional Sierra product at time of initial shipment. 

Phone orders are entered the same 

day. Mail orders are entered the day they are received by Sierra’s Order 
Desk. Please allow four to six working days for filling your order. 


Due to the large variations in shipping cost for various international 
destinations, and the fluctuating cost of delivery to some locations, all 
international orders will be by credit card only. Actual shipping and 
handling charges, including a small fee for customs stickers and insurance 
(when necessary) will be added to the credit card total on sendout. Most 
orders are delivered by air mail/parcel post. 

Sierra products are distributed to retailers worldwide. You may want 
to consult with your local retailer before ordering from Sierra. Any 
questions regarding Sierra’s International Shipping Charges policy should 
be directed to the Sierra Order Desk (209) 683-4468 


If you arc not completely satisfied witli any prcxlucl you purchase from cxir 
catalog, for any rcason, return it within 10 days and we will promptly exchange 
tiK' item or refuixl your purchase price. A soflwarc product is only as gixxl as 
the company behind it. For morc than ten years Sierra has been making quality 
.software for in homes, sclxx)ls aixl businesses. We stand behind our 
software with product warranties and customer support which exceed normal 
industry standiuxls, to maximize ycxir utility and en joyment of your micriK'om- 
puter. We thank you for your support. Hardware items like the Roland Ml-32, 
LAPCI, AdLib, Game Blaster, the Soundblaster and Gravis products are 
provided by other companies for resale by Sierra. While Sierra attempts to 
insure the value of these items, it makes no warranties or claims for them above 
tlx)se of the original manufacturer. Sierra will refund or exchange any hardware 
item provided it is returned within 10 days in its original packaging. 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 683-8989 Orders / -800-326-6654 

Summer 1990 

Page 57 



Sierra currently has 
three full-time people 
working in its returns 
department. They are 
responsible for helping 
customers update and 
replace their Sierra 
software products. If 
your Sierra software 
products should stop 
working for any reason. 
Sierra will replace it. 
Just send your Disk #1 
along with $5 for the 
5.25 disks or $10 for 
the 3.5 disks. 

If we upgrade or 
otherwise alter a pro- 
gram which you own, 
we will send you the 
upgrade for a $10.00 
fee. (Watch the Sierra 
News Magazine for 
information on 
software upgrades.) 

If you update or 
replace a program 
within 90 days of the 
purchase date, you pay 
nothing at all. 


Please allow up to 
four weeks for delivery. 
Some items may be out 
of stock or not avail- 
able for shipment at the 
time of this publication. 
Sierra may refuse any 
order for any reason. 
Prices, including stated 
shipping charges, may 
change without notice. 
All checks and credit 
cards are subject to 
verification before or- 
ders can be processed. 

Call 800/326/6654 


(25f)K reif aired unless noted). All products are 
shipped with both 3.5" and 5.25" disks enclosed, 
support EGA. CGA, VGA, Hercules Monochrome , 
MCGA (PS2) and Tandy Graphics modes, unless 



AllJil2K games support musjc^ cards. _ ~ 

!l?m LPrkf 1 

King’s Quest 1 (256K) 

! 49,95 _ 

King’s Quest 1 (5 1 2 K) - Fall ^ 

r 59.95 

King’s Guest 11 

[ 49.9.1 

King’s Guest III 

1 49.95 

King’s Guest IV (256K) 

I 49.95 

King’s Guest IV (512K) ^ 


Hero’s Guest (512K) 


The Black Cauldron 


Space Quest 1 

49.95 ; 

S^ace Quest II 

_ 49.95 ■ 

Space III (512K) 

_ 5SL95 

Colonel’s Bequest (5 1 2Kj 


Police Guest 1 


Police Guest II (512K) 


Code Name: Iceman (512K) NEW 


Conquests of Camclot (5 1 2K) NEW 


Leisure Suit Larrv I 


Leisure Suit Larrv II (512K) 


Leisure Suit Lany III (512K) 


Keeping Up With Jones, (512K) 


Summer - MCGA. VGA only (no Tandy 
Graphics Support) 720 K 3.5” and 1.2 meg 
5.25” disks enclosed. 

Gil’s Well (512KJ-Fall 


Manhunter - New York 


Manhunter - San Francisco 


Gold Rush! 


Mixed-up Mother Goose 


Mixed-up Mother Goose (512K) - Fall 




Silpheed (512K)** 


Sorcerian(512K)*** NEW 


Hoyle’s Book of Games (5 1 2K) 


Championship Boxing* ( 128K) 


3-D Helicopter Simulator 


HomeWord II (512K) 


Sierra’s Gn-Line (5 1 2K) 


David Wolf: Secret Agent (5 12K) NEW 


A-10 Tank Killer**** (5 12K) NEW 


* 3.5” not supported and not hard disk installable . 
** Hercules not supported. 

*** EGAIVGA onl\ (high density disks only) 
****Full 256 color VGA 


Minimum 5I2K required 

1 Ouantitv 1 

1 Item j 

1 Price 1 

I Atari ST Sinele-sided Disks II 

King’s Quest I 


King’s Quest II 


King’s Guest III 


Manhunter - New York 


Manhunter-San Francisco 


Space Quest I 

49.95 i 

Space Quest 11 


Police Quest I , 


Police Quest II 


Leisure Suit Larry I 


Leisure Suit LiUTy 11 


Mixed-up Mother G(X)se 


I hc Black Cauldron 


Gold Rush! 


Atari ST Double-sided Disks 

JCing^’s Quest IV 


Hero^ Quest -Summer 


Colonel’s Bequest - Summer 


Conquests of Camelot - Summer 



Manhunter-San Francisco 


Space Guest 111 


Police Quest II 


Code Name: Iceman - Summer 


l.eisure Suit Larrv II 


Leisure Suit Larrv III 


Hoyle’s Book of Games - Summer 



512K ai 


id dual -.sided drive required ti 
s work in color on Mac 11 unless noted wi 

Item _ 

oted. All 
th an*. 1 

King’s Quest 1 

_ 49,95 ' 

King’s Guest II 


King’s Guest III 


King’s Quest IV - Winter 


Space Quest I 

49.9.5 , 

Space Guest II 


SpaceGuest III - Winter 


Police Guest I 


Police Quest II -Winter 

59,95 . 

Mixed-up Mother Goose 


Leisure Suit Larry I 


Leisure Suit Larrv 11 - Winter 


Manhunter - New York 


Manhunter - San Francisco 


Gold Rush! 1 


Championship Boxing* (128KI 



Hovle’s Book of Games - Winter 

_ -54.95 


Thexder -Winter 



II All products require an Apple I lei He with I28K unless 
II otherwise noted. 



■Price ■ 

King’s Guest I 


King’s Guest 11 


King’s Guest III 


King’s Guest IV 


Space Quest I 


Space Quest II 


The Black Cauldron 


Leisure Suit Larrv 


Gold Rush! NEW 


Police Guest 


Mixed-up Mother Goose 


Manhunter - New York 




Championship Boxing (64K) 


Page 5H 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I -900-370-KLUE / In.dde 1-900-370-5113 

Sierra News Magazine 

7 a.m. to 9 p.m. (PST) Monday through Friday 
Outside U.S. 209/683/4668 


M ini mum 5 1 2K requi red 




King’s Quest I 


King’s Quest II 


King’s Quest III 


King’s Quest IV 


Space Quest I 



Space Quest II 


Police Quest I 


Mixed-up Mother Goose 


The Black Cauldron 


Leisure Suit Larry I 


Manhunter - New York 


Gold Rush! 








Minimum 5/2 K required 


1 Item 

1 Price 

Kinc’s Quest I 

^ 49,95 

King’s II 

i 49.95 ^ 

King’s Quest III 

[ 49.95 

King’s Quest IV - Summer 


Hero’s Quest 


Colonel’s Bequest - Fall 


Space Quest I 


Space Quest II , 


Space Quest II] 


Leisure Suit Larry I ^ 


Leisure Suit Larry' II | 


Leisure Suit Larry III i 


-V - -j 

Police Que_st.f 


Police Quest 11 - Summer 


Black Cauldron 

. _393)5 

Mixed-Up Mother Goose 

29.95 1 

Gold Rush! 

39.95 1 


Manhunter - New York 


Manhunter-San Francisco-Summer 



, Thexder 

_ .M.95^ 

Movie's Bwk of Game NEW 


A 10 Tank Killer NEW 

49.1)5 ' 


Quantity ! Item 1 

^ Prict ^ 


King’s Quest 1 

9.95 _ 

King’s Quest II 


King’s Quest III 

9.95 ^ 

King’s Quest IV 

9.95 j 

Colonel’s Bequest 

9.95 1 

Hero’s Quest 

9.95 , 

Conquests of Camelot - Summer 


Space Quest I 


Space Quest II 

9.95 J 

Space Quest III 


Police Quest I 


Police Quest II 

9.95 i 


Code Name: Iceman - Summer^ 




The Black Cauldron 


Leisure Suit Larry I 

9.95 ! 

^ Leisure Suit Larry II 

9.95 , 

Leisure Suit Larrv III 


Gold Rush! 


■ — -- 

j Manhunter - New York 


Manhunter - San Francisco 






Sierra Japan Coffee Mugs 



Leisure Suit Larrv Beach Towel 


; The Official Book of King’s Quest 


Sierra Music Demo Cas.sette 


Sierra Video Cassette Catalog 


NOTE: Music Demo & Video Cassettes are provided for 
shipping and handling charges, shown above. Charges 
above are for U.S. and Canada. International shipments [ 
are subject to International Shipping Policy. 1 


Quantity .Specif> SiA* 


Leisure Suit Larrv (S M L XD 


Sierra Adventure (S M L XD 


Colonel’s Bequest (S M L XL) 


King’s Quest IV (S M i. xd 


Police Quest II (S M L XL> 


Hero’s Quest (S M L xd 


Sierra 1990 Tour (S M L XD 


Note: Leisure Suit Larrx & Hero's Quest have 3/4 sleeves. | 


Quantity , 

, _ IBM & compatibles 

1 Price 

Ad Lib Music Svnthesi/er Card* 

^ 149.95 

Ad Lib Music Synthesizer Card 
with Visual Composer* 


Game Blaster* 





239.95 1 


Roland MT-32 Sound Module* 

550.00 1 

Roland MT-32 (Micro Channel)* 


1 NOTE: Wc recommend that all MT-32 and LAPCl 
orders be placed by phone to insure the proper model \ 
for your computer is shipped. At minimum, please call 
1 SOO-3 26-6654 prior to ordering to verify the order 


Quantity , 



Gravis Analog Joystick* 


! * See m 



Gravis Eliminator game card* 


Grav is Eliminator (MCAJ eard* 

\xt page for shipping details. 

Please enter TOTALS here and 
rO I AL AMOUNT on next page 




CHravis Products are 
described in detail 
on the back page. 




Sierra currently 
employs 1 1 repre- 
sentatives who work 
full-time answering in- 
coming calls for cus- 
tomer support. They can 
be reached any time 
during regular West 
Coast business hours by 
calling (2()9) 683-8989. 



Sierra customer ser- 
vice representatives 
answer technical ques- 
tions on Smart Money and 
Home Word productivity 
prtKiucts, and will handle 
any questions you may 
have about other Sierra 
products. Should you 
have any questions 
regarding an order you 
have placed directly with 
us, the Customer Support 
Department will be happy 
to help you. 



Technical support is 
also contacted through the 
(209) 683-8989 telephone 
number. Technical sup- 
port people will work with 
you to solve problems 
with hardware com- 
patibility or disk 
problems. If our software 
d(K'sn't work with your 
hardware I'or any rea.son, 
our technical support staff 
will solve the problem, or 
your money back. 

We guarantee it. 

Summer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (2()9) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6SJ-S9S9 Orders I -HOO-320-6654 

Pa,^e 59 


PC). BOX 485. COARSEGOLD, CA 93614 

800-326-6654 (U.S.) 

7 A.M. TO 9 P.M. (PSD Monday through Friday 

From outside the United States call 209-683-4468 




FRFF regular shipping and liandling, except for hardware items 
(please cheek one) 

CH U.S. Mail or O UPS to Continental U.S. 

□ U.S. Mail to APO, I PO anil Canada 
For f’AwSTFR service, priority shipping and handling is available lor 
an additional charge: 

CZl UPS Priority (phone nuniher required) 

( ) 


Continental U.S. 
Alaska, Hawaii , & 
Puerto Rico 
Continental U.S. 

Roland M T-32 
Ad Lib Music Card 
Game Blaster 
Gravis Joystick 
Gravis Eliminator cards 





UPS Ground 
$ 12.00 


additional product 




2nd Day Air 
$ 6.00 
$ 4.00 

Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and Canada 

International Shipping Policy applies (see below ) 


Software and Hardware 

Due to the large variation in shipping costs for various international 
destinations, and the fluctuating cost of delivery to some locations, 
all international orders will be by credit card only. Actual shipping 
and handling charges, including a small fee for customs stickers and 
insurance (when necessary) will be added to the credit card total. 
Most orders are delivered by air mail/parcel post. 

Iblal Merchandise 

California residents add 6.50% sales tax 
(California FPO/APO must include tax) 
Massachusetts residents add 5% sales tax 

Priority Shipping and liandling (optional) 

Hardware Shipping and Handling 

roTAL paymf:nt 

Free MS-DOS soflwiire with any m 
Oiler emis M;irch ?l. IWI. 

Roland MT-32 

Select any two games Irom the 
order form. 

Any other music card 

iisic card order 

Filter prtxluct names 


Circle one: Silpheed 
Hoyle's Hook oj Games 

Free r-SHIR'f if your order totals $75 or more 
OITerends December 31, 19^0; postmark January 31, IWI 

Circle the size desired 







Zip Code 

Daytime Phone Number, including Area C(xle 
(Required for credit card orders; desired for all orders) 
SHIP TO (if different from above) 





Zip Code 


CH Check/Money Order (payable to Sierra On-Line tm.) 

CH Visa n MasterCard d American Express □ Discover 
Account Number 


I I I I I I T 


Expiration Dale 


Authorized signature (required for credit card orders) 


□ Apple lIe/IIc+/Laser 128 □ Atari ST 

n Apple IIGS n Apple Macintosh 

O IBM and compatible D PCJR 

(Z1 Tandy KKK) Series CH Commcxlore Amiga 

□ PS/2 Model 25 & 30 

Number of Sierra products owned 
Do you have a mouse? 

Do you have a hard disk? 

Do you have a modem? 

Do you have a joystick? 

IBM owners, will your machine accept (check those 






5.25" 1.2 meg 




3.5" 1.44 meg 




What is your computer’s 

internal processing speed? 



AT_ XT_ 286_ 386_ I don't know_ 

If yes, what brand? 

What type of graphics card do you have? _ 

What is your computer’s memory capacity? 

256K_ 5I2K_ 640K_ 1+ me^ I don’t know_ 

CONTINUF’ NEWS MA(iAZINE? Do you wish to continue to receive the Sierra News Magazine at your home? If so, please complete this form and mail it to us 
as soon as possible. (NOTE: This will not be necessary if you have sent in a Sierra product registration card in the last 12 months.) 

Last Name 

First Name 


Slate Zip Ctxle 


Telephone (Area Ccxle) Customer # (see label) 

Paf^e 60 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California 1 -900-370- KLUE / Inside I -900-370-5 1 13 

Sierra New\s Magazine 

We will gladly upgrade your program. Disk upgrade is free for the first 90 days of product ownership. After 90 days there is a $10.00 handling fee. For the fastest ser- 
vice, simply mail the original Disk #1 of the program to us in a regular envelope (unprotected), along with either a copy of your sales receipt or the handling fee and a 
note detailing your computer hardware. We will get the upgrade to you right away. Tlie address is: Sierra On-Line Inc., P.O. Box 485, Coarsegold, CA 93614. Attention: 


& How to find it * PRETER # 


Black Cauldron 


King.s Quest I 


Kings Quest 11 


Kings Quest HI 


Leisure Suit Larry 


Leisure Larry II 


Space Quest I 


Space Quest II 



Leisure Suit Larry 


Space Quest I 


Space Quest II 



Leisure Larr>' II 



Kings Quest IV 


Police Quest I 


Smiui Money 





Gold Rush 


Kings Quest 1 


Kings Quest II 


Kings Quest HI 


Leisure Suit Larry 


Manhunter NY 


Space Quest 1 


Space Quest II 



Helicopter Sim. 


Kings Quest HI 


Kings Quest IV AGI 


Kings Quest IV SCI 


Heros Quest 


Leisure Larry II 


Home word II 


Manhunter S.F'. 


Pi)lice Quest II 




Space Quest I 


Space Quest II 


Space Quest HI 




































































titit: screen 



















K’jR & gameblastf:r 




page 46 
for news of 

Mixed-Up Mother Goose 

King*s Quest / 

13 Million Dollar H/iimeii 

David Nevin and his nine partners won 13 million 
dollars in the Illinois State Lottery and they did 
it with Lotto Logic* . 

“On October 14, we won the Illinois State 
Lottery using Lotto Logic^ . We picked the only 
first place winner for $13 million, one second 
place winner for $2,000 and two third place win- 
ners for $70 each — all this on just five lottery 
cards by using the power of Lotto Logic^- and 
the Dr. Bradley System. 

“Overall, Lotto Logic ' is a comprehensive, user 
friendly, no nonsense lotteiy program for the serious 
lottery player. “ David Nevin. Anderson. Ind. 
Complete testimonial available on request. 

LOTTO LOGIC*' is the only computer software 
system that has produced a major win in a lot- 
tery. (Documented 6 out of 6 using numbers 
actually picked and wheeled by the program.) 
LOTTO LOGIC* is a combination of advanced 
mathematical theory and state-of-the-art compu- 
ter technology. The program utilizes the exclu- 
sive Trend Line Analysis, developed by Dr. 
George Bradley. LOTTO LOGIC* has a user 
friendly menu system loaded with features like: 

► Data base for 28 state lotteries included 

► 74 different wheeling systems 

► Check your tickets 

► Easy-to-update data bases 

► Play any lottery 

There are many LOTTERY programs on the 
market but only Lotto Logic*" produces major 
winners — Just ask David Nevin! 

ORDER NOW. JUST CALL 1-800-433-6960 
or (206) 391-7817 

or send $79.95 plus $2.00 shipping & handling to: 

17371 N.E. 67th Court. Suite 211 
Redmond. WA 98052 

AJkm 2-3 mks tof dtlHvy WA stM M 6 uIk ttn 


Stammer 1990 

24 Hour Sierra BBS - (209) 683-4463 

Customer Service (209) 6SJ-S9S9 Orders / -S00-326-66S4 

Page 61 

This cart(X)n came lo us from West Germany ... by FAX! 

Next Issue 

Sierra will be at the following Trade Shows 
over the next few months. 

June 2-5 CES Chicago 

June 29- July 1 AMI-EXPO Chicago 

September 13-15 One Computer Show Honolulu 

September 14-16 Applefest/Computerfest San Francisco 

September 15-18 World of Commodore Valley Forge, PA 

Come by our booth and say hello. 

A Preview of: 

King’s Quest V 
Space Quest IV 
Hero’s Quest II 


January 1 - April 30, 1990 

Conquests of Camelot ^ 
Colonel's Bequest 
Hero's Quest 
Leisure Suit Larry 3 
Sorcerian — Master Scenario 
Space Quest HI 
King's Quest IV 
Hoyle's Book of Games 
Roland MT-32 

Page 62 

24 Hour Sierra Hint Lines 

Outside California I -900-370-KLVE ! Inside 1-900-370-5113 

Sierra New s Magazine 

Another Great Game F rom Japan 



Create up to 20 characters and watch 
them grow in power and ability as they 
meet the challenge of each quest. They'll 
even mature in appearance as they earn 
the experience that comes with years 
of adventuring. 


Use wits, muscle and magic against a 
wide spectrum of enemies, from fantastic 
dragons and monsters to evil sorcerers 
and wicked thieves. 7 magic elements 
combine to form powerful magic spells. 

I f you enjoy the action of arcade 
games and the challenge of 
role-playing games, you'll love 
SORCERIAN. Sierra and Nihon Falcon 
bring you Japan’s Best-selling adventure 
game — with 15 thrilling scenarios, 
characters you create yourself, and over 
100 magic spells to use against more that 
600 enemies, S()RCF>RIAN is the most 
exciting Japanese import yet. 


Stunning graphics and an original 
soundtrack from Japan help make 
SORCERIAN one of the best gaming 
experiences around. 15 separate 
adventures make it a game you can play 
again and again. SORCERIAN — a 
facinating new dimension in 
computer games! 



1 - 800 - 326-6654 

or call vour local Software Dealer 



■> t n - ' • * 

Once in a While, Someone Makes Us an 

Offer We Can’t Refiise! 

The folks at Advanced GRA VIS Computer Technology have recently made it possible for Sierra to present you with a line of products 
we're sure you'll like; Gravis Analog, a precision joystick that can taKC what you dish out, and Eliminator Game Cards '*, the game 
card with guts. We're sold on this stuff, and here's why... 

Gravis Analog Joystick 

**The World’s Best Joystick” 

Fred Blechman 

Computer Shopper 

Nobody is harder on a joystick than Sierra's own Quality 
Assurance department. We’ve tried those r)// 76 ’r joysticks, and 
frankly, they just don’t stand up to much. Gravis, on the other 
hand, is alive and well after nearly a year of ‘round the clock’ 
abuse. Furthermore, the Gravis joystick is unsurpassed in its 
smooth, precision control, which you adjust to preference, 
and its wide, solid base helps keep it stationary, even during 
your most fercKious battles. 


Eliminator Game Cards™ 

The Ultimate Joystick Adaptor Cards 

To get the most out of your Gravis Analog Joystick, you'll 
want to check out the Eliminator and Eliminator MCA game 
cards from GRAVIS. Eliminator, a dual port adaptor, in- 
cludes an external potentiometer adjustor (adjust your 
Joystick's reaction speed automatically!), and 'GravTest' 
Calibration software (centers your joystick and tests jiring 
buttons). Eliminator MCA, a single port adaptor, has all that 
and its compatible with all Micro Channel computers. 

Who Could Ask For More? 






omiDf CAUfom