Home News FAQ Gametypes Links Contributors ToDo Download Help
Companies Computers Gamesystems Authors Timeline Interpreters Emulator

Scott Adams Adventure #14

The original series of Scott Adams games contained only 12 games. Later, #13 (Sorceror of Claymorgue Castle) was produced. Then things get interesting. Numerous sources say that there were, finally, 14 games in the series. The problem is that there are differing opinions as to what game should be the 14th.

The alternatives are these two:

After realizing that different people think that different games should be #14, I have tried to collect information about this mystery. I can't really say that I've found the final truth, but at least I have some documentation. Below is a list of the relevant messages (from mail and news), along with sender and date. My comments are in italics.

Date: 08 Jan 96 14:05:07 EST
From: Scott Adams <74447.526@compuserve.com>

As I remember Return to Pirates Isle (originally written as a graphic adventure for TI-99/4A, ran in a 16k cartridge!) was #14.

Scott Adams is the author of Return to Pirate's Island and the founder of Adventure International, so he should know what he's talking about.

Date: Fri, 25 Mar 1994 21:16:56 +0100
From: "Alan Cox(SUCS Admin)"

14 is Return To Pirate's Island, Buckaroo was a one off special.

Alan Cox was working for Adventure International UK when these games were published.

A conversation between Paul David Doherty <h0142kdd@rz.hu-berlin.de> (PDD) and John Eric Marler <marler@husc.harvard.edu> (JEM) taking place 16 Oct 1995 which I have been sent a copy of:

JEM: I used to play a Scott Adams graphic adventure on my TI99/4a years ago called "Return to Pirate's Island" -- maybe you've heard of it. Incidentally, it was numbered Adventure #14.

PDD: I've heard about it but never seen it (it's one of the most sought after items in the adventure community...). It was only released on the TI (are you sure that it was #14 back then?). From what I have heard it didn't have a number and the official #14 was Buckaroo Banzai. All the confusion arose from the fact that Adventure International UK could not port Buckaroo to the Spectrum, so they dug up Return To PI and called it #14 in their releases...

JEM:This does clear up the discrepancy for me. I'd seen #14 referred to as "Buckaroo Banzai" in a couple of places recently, and had begun to doubt my own memory about the #14 designation for "RtPI." But really, I'm almost positive that it had that number -- I remember because at that point (late in the life cycle of the TI99/4a) I had all 12 text adventures and was pleased to get this new, color graphic adventure; but I was perplexed that one adventure, #13, seemed to be missing. I knew that #13 was the "Claymorgue (sp?) Castle" adventure because I saw it listed in an Adventure International catalogue from that period, but it wasn't available for my computer. This was early 1984.

PDD:That's interesting. I actually asked Phil Case (author of Buckaroo) as well as Scott Adams (author of Return...) about it, and both said that Return was never a #14.

JEM:Another remark about this: the problem probably stems from the fact that the TI versions of these adventures were packaged and distributed by TI, not by Adventure International. Our packages, media labels, etc., were not the distinctive Adv. Int'l. packages familiar to users of other systems (with those rather spooky cover paintings and typography) but rather a generic TI Box, instruction manual, and (in my case, cassette) labels. I'm speculating that the #14 designation was TI's, not Adv. Int'l.'s.

Assuming that JEM's memory is not playing tricks here, Return to Pirate's Island is #14 (at least for the TI-99/4A). It might, however, be a numbering scheme thought up by Texas Instruments since they repackaged the games themselves. If that is the case, though, where did TI game #13 go? Even if Texas Instruments thought up #14 for Return to Pirate's Island it's still interesting to note that PDD quotes Scott Adams as saying that it was never #14 since he's quoted as saying the exact opposite at the top of this page. Apparently either PDD or Scott Adams has forgotten something over the years.

From: "M Scott Adams" <msadams@pcii.net>
Date: Thu, 28 May 1998 16:09:43 -0500

I also check my database files. Here is the scoop. Return to Pirate's Island was #14. Buckaroo Banzai was #41 yes 41. I was starting a new numbering series for branded games. Also Questprobe series were numbers 51, 52 and 53. I was working on 54 (X-Men) when my company went belly up!

This seems like a plausible explanation for the confusion, since 14 and 41 would be pretty easy to mix up.

From: Matias Hernandez <mhernand@ucu.edu.uy>
Date: Fri, 21 Aug 1998 00:50:17 -0300

I still have the cartridge and manual for "Return to Pirate's Isle", the TI-99/4A adventure game. At least there, it is described (first page) as "Adventure #14", programmed by Scott Adams, etc. In the second page, it lists "the Adventures currently available": the same as in the site, except that Pirate's Adventure is the first, followed by Adventureland, Secret Mission,...; Savage Island I & II and The Golden Voyage. Sorcerer of Claymorgue Castle and Buckaroo Banzai are not mentioned.

At least for TI-99/4A, Return to Pirate's Island is #14. Interesting that the first two games should be reversed on the TI, however. Is the numbering really like that or is it just a glitch in the manual?

From: Anders Persson <apersson850@hotmail.com>
Date: Sun, 6 Dec 1998 22:54:17 +0100

My 99/4A still works, and I have the RtPI game, so I simply started it up. It presents itself as "Adventure 14 by Scott Adams". Whether TI or somebody else numbered it 14 is another question. By the way, my game is on disk, not on cartridge. My version was a test version, prior to the cartridge was released, but it's a final test version, so it really works.

Adventureland was created by Hans Persson and is now maintained by Stefan Meier.

If you find any errors or have information that is missing, please let me know