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A shadowkeep question... Why did this game get a book? as its rare (or so it seems) it wasnt a huge sales success (just a guess), why was a book wrote? has anybody read the book? is it good?
The book was actually written more or less in conjunction with the game, so the game technically didn't come first. That's why it's advertised like that on the cover of the game ("Now a Novel by" and then "ALAN DEAN FOSTER" below it). I believe the background is is that Alan Dean Foster was inspired by the relative originality of the game world to write the book. It's probably more a name/money thing, but still, certainly something unique for the time. Like I had mentioned, Trillium/Telarium had strong relationships with well known authors, like Michael Crichton with the game Amazon, among others. It was basically a two part strategy by Trillium to compete with Infocom. Instead of Infocom's talented, but unknown game authors, they would one, use a famous author to headline their games, and two, offer up nice graphics along with a quality parser. Some of their games even featured mini-game elements along the way. Of Infocom's competition, I'd say they were the most successful at distinguishing themselves, but obviously the company's fortunes turned by the mid-80's much like Infocom's when that style of game fell out of commercial favor (and I personally didn't care as much for some of the later games, like Nine Princes in Amber and Perry Mason).
I do have the book, an original paperback from back in the day. It's on my list, but I have yet to read it. It's one of those books that's available everywhere used and for pretty cheap too, so it must have had a healthy print run.
I did open up my used copy of Shadowkeep the game last night too, but got distracted testing out a Dick Smith Wizzard (an Australian CreatiVision). Anyway, as I mentioned, my copy of Shadowkeep has the Telarium branding on the cover, but everything inside (just the two double sided disks and the manual in mine) retained the original Trillium branding. I guess making the change on the exterior was enough to appease the Trillium publishing company.
As for writing a collector's book with monetary values, I'm no longer into that idea. I think a book is too quickly out of date. I think a much better idea is to create a phone and Web app with regular updates. In fact, I think that would be an awesome business idea and could extend well beyond videogame--a living database of the used value of items. I imagine you could get a tremendous start if you were able to mine eBay's public data, among other auction sites, and averaging things out.\
In any case, I'm booked with other book projects through at least the first week in October.
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