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Actually, it's hard not to wonder if the entire calendar is off by a year. Making Spellrazor in the spring of 1981 would mean Bower had never seen Tempest or Robotron or (I think) Omega Race. Defender would have been out there, barely, but I don't know how fast distribution channels got it to various cities in the US. Spellrazor screams with the joy of taking something to the next level, but it feels like it's building on the aforementioned classics, not on Pac Man and Space Invaders.

So even taking into account his modified hardware, this would make more sense to me as a project from 1982 than 1981.

This concludes maybe the pickiest post I have probably ever made on the internet. Please enjoy. :)

(Edited 1 time)

No, it's 1981 (Defender was released in February that year). I believe Bower was working at Williams at the time, contemporaneous to Defender (in the next windowless lab). He showed it to Eugene Jarvis at one point, who laughed and said "I don't even have a reverse button on my game and that's still considered too complicated. You're nuts." (This is true - Defender originally only allowed you to fly forward). The reason I haven't mentioned either direct quotes from Eugene or the name 'Williams' is that (cough) Lawyers (cough, splutter). I redacted them. :-)

As for the 6503, somewhere between '75 and '81, someone was doing weird stuff with the 6502. I am presuming a former cult member.

Bower went missing at the end of 1981, but is believed to have moved to Sinneschlosen, although that can't be confirmed, of course. Some believe Polybius IS just Spellrazor with a re-skin (hence the short timeframe), but those people are probably fools.

Oh, if he was internal to Williams the timeline makes perfect sense! Sorry about that.

In any case, thanks for your dedication to restoring this piece of history. Looking forward to playing through the rest of it.