Douglas Adams
• Name: Douglas N. Adams
• Joined Infocom: 1984
• Games written: 2
• Left Infocom: 1987

Douglas Adams was born on March 11, 1952 in Cambridge, England.

Little is known about how much of a nuisance he might have been to his elementary school teachers, but his refined sense of humor was already alive when he graduated from Cambridge's St. John's College, where he was a member of the "Footlights Club," a starting pad for many of Britain's comics.

His performances on stage brought him to working for radio shows, which eventually led to the birth of the famous "Hitchhiker's Guide" in 1978, when he and a friend persuaded BBC 4 to let him do a science-fiction series. In the meantime he had also worked for "Monthy Python" and was a script editor for the "Doctor Who" TV show.

"Hitchhiker's Guide" turned out to be a gigantic success and was not long after transformed into a series of bestselling novels, which Douglas is now best known for.

In the early 80's the success ot the books naturally spread to the US and among the fans were the people from Infocom. Vice versa just at that time Douglas found out about Infocom adventures and concluded that if there was to be a computer game based on his novels, he wanted it to be done by Infocom. Marc Blank later recalled in an interview with Commodore Power/Play magazine: "Imagine our surprise when Doug Adams walked in one day and said he's been playing our games for awhile and wants to work on one. We were totally floored."

Chosen to team up with Douglas was Steve Meretzky, based on his previous experience with science-fiction themed adventures. To work together was quite a challenge, as Steve was in Massachusetts and Douglas in England. Eventually the two connected their computers through the Dialcom network and started to exchange emails. Later Steve also flew in to England, to hold another meeting with Douglas in person. The game was finally finished in 1984.

The result of this hard work was an adventure that baffled and made laugh hundreds of thousands of people. "With most of the games, I was very much aware of the fact that they were written by computer people who had branched out into writing," Douglas recalls about other computer game companies in the above interview, "I wanted to be one of the first to come from the other side of the tracks. While I was writing the game, I frequently had the feeling 'I don't think anybody's ever done this before.' It's very exciting working with this new medium, and I'll be pursuing it further."

There indeed were talks about another "Hitchhiker" game and actually one had been in the making, but it never got finished - the heroes are up to today still standing on the planet Magrathea. Instead the next collaboration between Douglas and Infocom came in 1987 with "Bureaucracy," a delightful adventure about Douglas' own experiences with, well, bureaucracy.

After that Infocom's and Douglas' ways parted, but Douglas was still interested in the interactivity of computer games. While writing more books (including the "Dirk Gently" series) and collecting even more fame (countless awards roam his bookshelves), he in 1998 came up with "Starship Titanic," a graphical adventure on a large scale.

Though it might appear that Douglas' life was only based on humor, he also explored the more serious of its elements. Evidence to this was given when in 1990 he cooperated with zoologist Mark Carwardine on a book about endangered species: "Last Chance to See."

Douglas Adams died in 2001.

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Titles written by Douglas Adams:

Hitchhiker's Guide (1984) (with Steve Meretzky)

Bureaucracy (1987) (with the staff of Infocom)

Past Infocom:

Starship Titanic (1998)

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