The Untold History of Game Developers: Volume 5

The Untold History of Game Developers Volume 5 is a spin-off of The Untold History of Japanese Game Developers trilogy. This time there’s less focus on Japan and more of a global outlook. There are 567 pages, with a review, chapter excerpt, and full contents below. A lot of stuff is republished from Hardcore Gaming 101, but quite a lot is also previously unseen material.

Please note that while page spreads are used to illustrate the content and design, the book is printed only in black and white. Colour printing would, sadly, increase the cost by five times.

Available exclusively through Amazon.

Amazon US – $29.99

Amazon UK – £24.99

For other Amazon stores please search your local site.

Review by Time Extension:

Full excerpt of the Hiroaki Yura / Project Phoenix chapter:


Foreword by Damien McFerran

Game Genie Interviews

Interviews with Ted Carron, Graham Rigby, Jonathan Menzies, Richard Aplin; creation of the Game Genie series of cheat cartridges for consoles, detailing how small British developer Codemasters took on the giant Nintendo and won


Street Fighter II – America, Japan, Hong Kong, and UK

Interviews with Tom Mason, Len Strazewski, Jeff Whiting, Laurie Thornton; creation of the SFII comic by Malibu Publishing; SFII comics globally; Nick Roberts and Roger Kean interviews; also random wacky SFII merchandise

Nigel Kitching interview (Donkey Kong and Sonic comics)

Neil Googe interview (unreleased Silent Hill comic)

Ghost Kanji in comics and Videogame Book Reviews


Lord of the Adverts

Interview with Michal Golebiowski on archiving videogame adverts

Retro by Design

Interviews with Maddy Thorson (Jumper games), Cly5m (Seiklus), Hikoza Ohkubo (Warning Forever), Pixel / Daisuke Amaya (Cave Story), Omega (Every Extend), Chronic Logic (Gish); a look at some fantastic indie games with a retro styling

Retro Internet TV Shows

Interviews with Jonathan Hamblin (Cybernet), Aaron Nanto (PcenginefxTV), and Yakumo (Retro Core); an examination of the history of videogame shows on TV and how they’ve evolved onto the internet

Select Button Podcast Episode #4: Games in Other Media

Detailed discussion on the bizarre portrayals of games in things like TV and film

The Birth and Rise of CD-ROM

Interviews with Hiromasa Iwasaki (programmer, Ys I & II) and Casey Loe (journalist, GameFan)

World Wide Web

Interviews with Casey Loe (GameFan journalist), Jon Courtney-Grimwood (Manga Mania), Jack Hebb (GameFAQs mod), Brad Levicoff (Zophar’s Domain founder), Jay Tholen (Hypnospace Outlaw developer)

Brian Watson interview

Brian discusses programming on the Nintendo 64’s 64DD add-on while at Acclaim

Michael Tedder interview

Michael explains how the gambling machines in Las Vegas casinos are programmed

Film Examination: My Science Project (interview with composer Peter Bernstein)


Introduction and Contents

Tomonori Otsuka (Metal Gear, MSX) & Masahiro Ueno (Metal Gear, NES)

Charles Ernst (Metal Gear, DOS)

Snake’s Revenge – Unfairly Maligned

Jeremy Blaustein reflects on 35 years of the Snake

David Hayter – the voice of Solid Snake

Shinta Nojiri of Ghost Babel : from Policenauts to NeverDead

Hitoshi Akamatsu of Snake’s Revenge and Castlevania – where is he?

Ryan Payton – formerly of Kojima Productions

Metal Gear Hoax Film Script!

Richard Ham (Syphon Filter) & Scott Youngblood (Syphon Filter)

Tim Stellmach (Looking Glass, Thief)

Randy Smith (Looking Glass, Thief)

Laura Baldwin (Looking Glass, Thief)

John Kroknes of Amuze (Headhunter)

Andy Irving’s controversial Official Xbox Magazine review of Headhunter Redemption

Fran Téllez de Meneses (UnMetal)

Interview with Jeremy Throckmorton (James Bond 007, GB)


Monochromatica Introduction, Foreword, and Contents

Catrap / Pitman, Chikyuu Kaihou Gun ZAS (interview with Mitsuto Nagashima), Mercenary Force, SeaQuest DSV (interview with Tom Meigs), Trip World, Daikatana (interview with Takeo Mogi), Fish Files, Survival Kids, Space Station Silicon Valley, Resident Evil: Gaiden (interviews with Tim Hull, Kieron Wheeler, Elliot Curtis, Stefan Barnett), cancelled Resident Evil port to GBC (Nigel Speight)


Ambition Over Appeal : An Examination of Immersive Simulations

Eight (8) Interesting Examples of Immersive Sims or Eurojank

Pathologic – brutal survival game from Eastern Europe, set in a plague town

E.Y.E: Divine Cybermancy – interview with Streumon Studio on their cyberpunk classic

Brigand: Oaxaca – an FPS/RPG similar to but unlike everything else

Brian Lancaster (Laughing Coyote Software) discusses making Brigand: Oaxaca


Preservation of Japanese Videogame History (Game History Annual Symposium 2014, Montreal)

A rare look at the Data East DECO Cassette System

Dark Side of the Sun: Underworld of the Japanese Games Industry (Replaying Japan 2016, Leipzig)

Understanding Japan Essay (Sheffield University)


Knights not Samurai: How Japan Appropriated Medieval European Culture

Precambrian Swordplay – A cursory look at Japanese action-RPGs before Zelda

Yukihiko Tani interview (Ragnacenty / Soleil / Crusader of Centy) & Shining Force investigation

Panzer Dragoon Saga

Xenoblade Chronicles (review for GameFAN magazine)

GameFAN bonus: unpublished SNK article & History of GameFAN

Hiroaki Yura on Project Phoenix JRPG (failed Kickstarter)

~ GAMES  I  MADE ~ –

An epic 16 pages on my game development career; my introduction to code, dozens of games, design docs, it’s a wild ride!


Introduction and Contents

NET YAROZE – 15 Years Later: How Sony’s Net Yaroze Kickstarted Indie Console Development

Interviews with Paul Holman (Sony Computer Entertainment Europe), Dr Henry Fortuna (Abertay Dundee University), Pr Ian Marshall (Abertay Dundee University), Robert Miles (lecturer, University of Hull), Ryan Butt (Official PlayStation Magazine), Charles Chapman (Total Soccer, First Touch Games), David Johnston (Timeslip, Smudged Cat Games), James Rutherford (Stuntman, Driv3r), Matt James (Robot Ron, Hermit Games), Nick Ferguson (Snowball Fight, Microsoft), Philippe AndreLorin (Samsaric Asymptotes), Mitsuru Kamiyama (Terra Incognita, Square-Enix), Robert Swan (Adventure Game, Aah Games), Shuichi Yano (Devil Dice, Shift), Scott Cartier (Decaying Orbit, Software Engineer at NVIDIA), Marc-Oliver Ihm (creator of Yabasic for the PlayStation 2), Sarah Lemarié (SCEE, Linux for the PS2)

A Basic History of BASIC on its 50th Birthday

Massively detailed feature on the origins of the BASIC programming language; top 10 dialects in BASIC; top 10 pieces of software; uncut interviews with Ste Pickford, John Lutz, Dr Thomas Kurtz, David Ahl, and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak

Immercenary : Making a Prototype of the Future

Development of this 3DO FPS/RPG; uncut interviews with Christopher Stashuk and Marla Johnson-Norris, plus rare archive photographs

Space Station Silicon Valley – Unusual Evolution

Development of this N64 classic where you possess animals; uncut interviews with Grant Salvona, Obbe Vermeij, and Daniel Leyden

5 lessons game devs can learn from pachinko

Includes uncut interviews with Pr Keiji Amano and Pr Geoffrey Rockwell on the history of pachinko

Xbox Live Indie Games dies on Friday

A sad reflection on the closure of the XBLIG store, plus a Top 10 list of games (but it goes up to 11)


Introduction and Contents

Nerves of Steel in Battalion Hell, It’s a Gamer’s World Out There, An RPG Without Saves, Frustration in an Aerial Fantasy World, Soldier of Lost Fortune, Why Game?, Convergence of Times

Mechanical DonkeysM.U.L.E. on A800, C64, NES, PC (interviews: Joe Ybarra, Trip Hawkins, Jim Rushing, Ted Cashion)

Stay Awhile, Stay Forever! – Further Adventures in the British Games Press

The Videogame Diaries – A satirical take on Digitiser‘s The Man Diary

Murdering Piggies – A Nostalgic Dissection of Falcom’s Gurumin on PSP


Introduction and Contents

Japan’s Mother series of JRPGs

Obscurity Below the Radar – multiple interviews with ASSEMbler Games users

Late 1980s and Beyond!

Abandoning the past?

Christmas in South Africa

Doujin A Go Go, Baby! – multiple interviews on the “Japanese indie” scene

Who Really Makes Videogames?

Bad Game Crediting – Email to Richard Moss

Bankrupt British Freelancers

In Memoriam (remembering deceased developers such as Dale DeSharone, Dani Bunten, Hidenori Shibao)

Returning from Exile (BBC Micro game) – interview with Peter Irvin

Cheating the System

Localisation: Confessions by Industry Legends

Featuring uncut interviews with Victor Ireland of Working Designs, Ted Woolsey formerly of Squaresoft, Bill Swartz of Mastiff, Aram Jabbari, Bill Alexander, and Nich Maragos of Atlus, Jeremy Blaustein formerly of Konami

Xseed Interview: Mike Engler on localising Retro Game Challenge



Demise of the Dreamcast, Homebrew for Dreamcast, Bomber Hehhe, Cannon Spike, Seaman Diaries, Skygunner, Bouken Jidai Katsugeki: Goemon (PS2), Victor Ireland email exchange regarding Goemon on PS2, the FEAR, XII Stag, Famicom: Form is Superior to Mass, Top 100 Famicom games as voted by Japan


Tom’s Hardware Guide – Taking Advantage of Imports By Modding Your Gaming Console

Brett Weiss SNES Omnibus & SNES Interviews

BioMetal, Carrier Aces, Cool World, Jurassic Park, SkyBlazer, Super Soccer; Chris Kerry interview (Cool World and Jurassic Park), Adrian Jackson-Jones (The Hunt for Red October); Justin Garvanovic (T2: The Arcade Game); Chun Wah Kong, Tim Follin, Lyndon Brooke, John Buckley (mostly Plok and Tin Star)


Introduction and Contents

Adventures of Shuggy, unreleased Akira interviews (Jim Gregory, Ryan Arnold, Tom Meigs, Phil Theobald, Patrick Scott Patterson; Amiga kusoge, Martin Blackmore, Anders Johansson, Paul Atkinson, Stuart Bell), Android Assault: The Revenge of Bari-Arm, Bulk Slash, Bullet Witch (Gerardo Sandoval), Dezaemon series, Dinosaurs for Hire (Tom Mason), Divide: Enemies Within, The (Ian Verchere), Exile / XZR series, Fan Translations (multiple interviews), Faselei!, Forbidden Siren, Fighters Destiny series, Floating Runner, Fragile Dreams, Folklore, Gaiares, Gaia Seed, Ghost in the Shell series on PS1, PS2, PSP, and mobile, Gateways, Hermie Hopperhead, Huang Di: Zhuolu zhi Zhan, Immercenary, Japanese Retro Computers, Jeremy Blaustein: Life and Games, Kishin Douji Zenki, Kenji Eno’s D series and WARP, Lost Eden, Lucienne’s Quest, Metal Wolf Chaos, Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, Michigan: Report From Hell, Omikron, Onore no Shinzuru Michi wo Yuke, Operation Darkness, Portopia Renzoku Satsujin Jiken, Project Firestart (Damon Slye, Joseph Ybarra), Rapid Angel, Rusty, Rayxanber trilogy, Sacred Armour Antiriad (Dan Malone, Richard Leinfellner), Thomas Lipschultz on “Metroidvania” in Japan, David Attenborough Does Not Write About Metroid & Metroidvania list, Samurai Pizza Cats, SeaQuest DSV (Jeff Peters, Medo Moreno), Silverload, Silpheed series, SkyGunner, Snow Job, Space Station Silicon Valley, Sonic X-Treme (Chris Senn), Vigilance on Talos V, War of the Dead series, Wonder Project J series, Yakuza series, Falcom’s Ys Interviews (Toshihiro Kondo, Jeff Nussbaum, John Greiner, Hiromasa Iwasaki), Yuusha no Kuse ni Namaikida, Zelda CDi games: Faces of Evil / Wand of Gamelon (Dale DeSharone), Zettai Zetsumei Toshi / Disaster Report series, Zombies ate my Neighbours (Mike Ebert), ZAMN sequel Ghoul Patrol (Kalani Streicher), miscellaneous junk



Agarest, Arena, Big Trouble in Little China, Burn: Cycle, Don’t Buy This: Five of the Worst Games Ever, Driller Tanks, Genocide, Lifeline, Noby Noby Boy, Predator, Superman 64, Spectral Force Genesis, Taiketsu Rumiizu!, Virtual Lab, Zelda’s Adventure




60 pages worth of curated HG101 blog entries!


Introduction and list of guides

Shining Force CD x 2 (MCD), Shadowrun (MCD), Goemon (PS2) plus and email from Working Designs, July (DC), Mass Effect 2 (PS3), Long Journey Home (PC), Zenith (CDi) plus an interview with its creator Edwin Neuteboom

Barbican “Game On” Exhibit, London

I slept on the streets of London to see Shigeru Miyamoto

Future Publishing Job Application Essays (x4)

Letters to GamesTM magazine (x2)

An Open Letter to Time Magazine and Lev Grossman

101 Rules of an Otaku Videogamer

GOG and Steam reviews (Freedom Planet, Long Journey Home, Sanctuary RPG, Night Trap, Star Control Origins)

MENSA – Candle 101 – Games Otaku Dojo


Magazines That I Wrote For (a detailed list of my career)

Games Journalism Sucks (a completely unhinged rant!)


Retro Survival CD

In 2005 Retro Gamer‘s publisher, Live Publishing, went bankrupt. Articles destined for issue #19 went unpublished. So our freelancing group banded together to create this “Magazine on a CD” – my feature was on the entire Goemon series!


Some of My Interviews (I don’t always do interviews, but when I do…)

Polygon (Alexa Ray Corriea), 4colorrebellion (Antonio Garcia), Net Yaroze for Eurogamer (David Owen), M! Games in Germany, Fuji TV interview, Erotic Games (Arthur Wolfe), Source Gaming Podcast (SourceCast #14), Côté Gamers (Cyril Denis), Panzer Dragoon Saga for The Ringer (Ben Lindbergh), The Koalition (Jakejames Lugo), DenFamiNicoGamer (Luis Garcia), Bad Game Crediting on Gamasutra (Richard Moss), New York Times (Adrian Chen), Command Line Heroes Dreamcast Podcast, medieval fantasy in games (Jordan Tyler Voltz), links between games and military power (Tony Fortin), full interview with Lewis Garcia, unpublished interview with Robby Lewis

My Other Books

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