LucasArts vs Sierra Part Two: The Remembering

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: The Graphic Adventure
Lucasfilm Games
Released: 1989

Today, we’re used to being disappointed by games that are tied to big movie releases. In fact, we kind of expect it. But that just wasn’t the case with Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: The Graphic Adventure. The game was overwhelmingly well-received and praised for the way it followed and expanded upon the story of the film.

It introduced a scoring system called the “Indy Quotient” (or IQ for short). When you finished the game, you could start a new one with your old score, which encouraged you to experiment during your second play through in order to find alternate solutions to puzzles. Although previous Sierra titles had employed scoring systems, the IQ system was unique in that it managed to add a lot of replay value, addressing a common complaint of the genre.

Hero’s Quest: So You Want to Be a Hero
Released: 1989

Sierra’s Hero’s Quest was famous for adding role-playing elements to the mix, allowing you to play as a fighter, magic user, or thief. Performing class specific activities, like fighting or casting spells would allow you to improve your stats and proficiency with your class – and how you progressed past the game’s puzzles would vary greatly depending on what type of character you created.

Hero’s Quest was later renamed as Quest for Glory due to legal issues regarding Milton Bradley and GamesWorkshop’s trademarked board game, HeroQuest.

Leisure Suit Larry 3: Passionate Patti in Pursuit of the Pulsating Pectorals
Released: 1989

The third installment in the Leisure Suit Larry series marked a return to the original’s dating sim-like design, allowing you to have a go at wooing a variety of women with gifts before something inevitably went wrong. The game also offered some role reversal, allowing you to play as Passionate Patti for a bit.

Above: Larry and Patti eventually find themselves on movie sets, where other famous Sierra series are being filmed

Above: In the end, Larry gets a job at Sierra, creating games based on his adventures with a very topless Patti

Space Quest III: The Pirates of Pestulon
Released: 1989

Roger Wilco’s quest for truth, justice, and really clean floors kept the laughs coming in Sierra’s third sci-fi comedy adventure. This time, the hapless janitor must uncover and stop the insidious plans of an evil videogame company, ScumSoft.

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  • dacole78 - May 29, 2009 3:50 p.m.

    for a great lucasfilm game that wasn't mentioned here try loom great game that I wish my disks still worked on..
  • pinoklin - May 28, 2009 8:21 p.m.

  • CARLINNIT - May 28, 2009 6:45 p.m.

    Ah, Grim Fandango. The stuff dreams are made of...
  • solsunforge - May 28, 2009 9:19 a.m.

    Well I shake my head in a left and right fashion as I read your verdict. True scum vm was a awesome landmark achivement and you actually forgot to mention loom for lucas arts. But this argument is a toss up I suppose but you did forget a lot of sierra point and clicks such as torins passage(created by al lowe the maker of leisure suit larry) you forgot laura bowe murder mysteries . True monkey island is awesome and is stil lawesome but you can play the sierra games still but you said you couldnt. Ever hear of dosbox? Its how all old games are played. On a side note someone mentioned some game from westwood must not of read that this piece was on sierra vs lucas arts. Those 2 companies are not westwood/bullfrog/maxis/ea (I mentioned all of those because they were subsidiaries of each other who got bought out by ea. Anyways I still maintain sierra as the winner and fan favorite. Captcha: ceiling ranger
  • iggzy880 - May 27, 2009 9:30 p.m.

    I gotta say, what this shows me is that Sierra kinda flooded the market and Lucas Arts had a handful of truly memorable games
  • JohnnyMaverik - May 27, 2009 1:28 p.m.

    Lol, just cuz of this im now guna go hunt down my copy of Monkey Island 1, 2 and maybe even 3 nd re-install, try nd find a way to make em work on vista, and play the best adventure games ever. Monky Island was actually my first game which i picked up when i was six, nd i still blame it and Toomb Raider 1 & 2 for making me a gaming nut.
  • cookie23q - May 27, 2009 9:18 a.m.

    lucasarts ftw
  • Sandman89 - May 27, 2009 5:03 a.m.

    Shit...typo :-p
  • 435 - May 27, 2009 3:11 a.m.

    Neglect for the Laura Bow adventures saddens me, Mr. Nagata.
  • RedOutlive10 - May 27, 2009 3:02 a.m.

    I remember Grim Fandango, story and characters. That game was so awesome... Remake pretty please? Or maybe another adventure game with the same flavor.
  • usmovers_02 - May 27, 2009 12:40 a.m.

    It's Myst or bust for me. I wasn't a gamer in the 80's and was only just starting in the 90's. When it comes to adventure games, I've gotta have at LEAST the graphic quality of Myst. I just can't do old games anymore (except for you Prince of Persia! You'll always be #1!) reCAPTCHA: who outlines (not me)
  • Wizrai - May 26, 2009 10:59 p.m.

  • Starplatinum - May 26, 2009 10:47 p.m.

    Nice trip through memory lane. Almost makes me want to play through Monkey Island again. Great article but needs more Gabriel Knight!
  • Shartdragon - May 29, 2009 9:57 p.m.

    Lucas arts is with out a doubt the winner. The Monkey Island series and my favorite Grim Fandango were the shit. I am getting ready to load Fandango now for another run through the after life with Manny. My only wish is that they would still make games like these. Tim Schafer's Psychonauts is the closes thing any body has come to capturing these classic adventure games. And I hope that Brutal Legend will another great game from Schafer.
  • Master_Leep - May 29, 2009 8:04 p.m.

    Sierra wins in my book.
  • TanookiMan - May 28, 2009 9:41 p.m.

    Has anyone ever played I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream? That adventure was messed up!
  • cassadinechik - May 27, 2009 9:08 p.m.

    Ah - Phantasmagoria gave me such nightmares! I still get shivers. Thanks for the memories, this was my intro to gaming so many years ago...
  • GlassPants - May 27, 2009 6:55 p.m.

    I totally agree with the Lucas Arts choice. I still proudly wear my Monkey Island 2 T-shirt anytime I can
  • notthatgoodthanks - May 27, 2009 5:25 p.m.

    Yeah lucasarts deserve the win. The 90's were full of so many classic adventures that they can't not win. Monkey island 1+2, grim fandango, sam and max, day of the tentacle... just amazing games, that are tough and decent fun.
  • Bashar - May 27, 2009 4:12 p.m.

    Doesn't need thinking. Lucasarts are the best. Well were at least at the time :). Sierra did some good games, but they lost focus and they took pride in how many different ways you can die, missing the real point of the game. FUN!

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