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Unpublished Hitchhikers Guide sequel revealed! - 1 to 1
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Oh Lordy, Plegaleggole
Fri 6th Jun '08 1:19PM
4678 Posts
Demian's Avatar
Member Since
7th Apr '03
Someone from Infocom has obtained a backup of the company's network drive as it stood in 1989, and is revealing juicy tidbits such as Milliways, the unfinished sequel to Hitchhikers Guide.


Even before they'd finished writing the Hitchhiker's game, Meretzky and Adams were considering two sequels based on the second and third books of the trilogy. In an email to Meretzky, Douglas Adams wrote down some notes from a design meeting, including a list of "some rooms we discussed (some might be kept for future games, which would be blatantly advertised at every opportunity)." The first three places on the list, "Milliways (need reservation to get in), Norway, Krikkit (placed off limits for protection of the galaxy, until you buy Game #3)."

A sequel seemed like such a sure thing, they mentioned it in the game's ending. In the final scene, the Heart of Gold sets down on Magrathea and you exit the ship. "Slowly, nervously, you step downwards, the cold thin air rasping in your lungs. You set one single foot on the ancient dust and almost instantly the most incredible adventure starts which you'll have to buy the next game to find out about."

But shortly after Hitchhiker's was released, Douglas Adams proposed making Bureaucracy instead, a game inspired by his real-life experience dealing with government red tape after an address change. He proposed the idea to Infocom in late 1984 and Infocom agreed.

But by May 1985, it seems like Adams lost interest. "In light of my discussions with Douglas yesterday and this afternoon at lunch, I cannot imagine finishing this game for 1985," wrote Marc Blank, Infocom's co-founder. "Douglas' attitude seems to be less than I require in order to do a collaboration."

With Adams busy working on Dirk Gently and other book-related projects, Bureaucracy languished. In his absence, Adams suggested a friend for the job, British writer Michael Bywater. Three years later and with no less than 10 co-authors, the game was finally released, crediting "Douglas Adams and the Staff of Infocom" on the cover. (The convoluted story of its development was detailed in an Easter egg in the final release of the game.)

Without Douglas Adams on board, the future of a Hitchhiker's sequel was in limbo.

Lots of interesting insights to be had about Douglas Adams, Infocom and the problems involved in getting a game ready for publication.

Has anyone played Bureacracy yet? I've got a copy of the manual, but the game is so old that it just fills the screen with ASCII gibberish. Worth downloading for the manual alone, though - available at the underdogs if I remember correctly.

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