Richard Allen Garriott
4 July 1961
|Occupation||Video game developer|
|Known for|| Ultima series |
Laetitia Pichot de Cayeux (m. 2011)
|Relatives||Robert Garriott (brother)|
|Awards||AIAS Hall of Fame Award (2006)|
|Space Adventures private astronaut|
Time in space
|11d 20h 35m|
Richard Allen Garriott de Cayeux (ne Garriott; July 4, 1961) is an English-American video game developer and entrepreneur. He is also known as his alter egos Lord British in Ultima and General British in Tabula Rasa . A well-known figure in the video game industry, Garriott was originally a game designer and programmer and now engages in various aspects of computer game development and business.
A video game developer is a software developer that specializes in video game development – the process and related disciplines of creating video games. A game developer can range from one person who undertakes all tasks to a large business with employee responsibilities split between individual disciplines, such as programming, design, art, testing, etc. Most game development companies have video game publisher financial and usually marketing support. Self-funded developers are known as independent or indie developers and usually make indie games.
An alter ego is a second self, which is believed to be distinct from a person's normal or true original personality. A person who has an alter ego is said to lead a double life. The term appeared in common usage in the early 19th century when dissociative identity disorder was first described by psychologists. Cicero coined the term as part of his philosophical construct in 1st-century Rome, but he described it as "a second self, a trusted friend".
Lord British, whose full name is Lord Cantabrigian British, is the name of the fictional ruler of Britannia, a kingdom in the fictional world of Sosaria, created by Richard Garriott for his computer game series Ultima. Garriott himself is also known to his fans as Lord British.
On October 12, 2008, Garriott flew aboard Soyuz TMA-13 to the International Space Station as a private astronaut,returning 12 days later aboard Soyuz TMA-12. He became the second astronaut, and first from the U.S., who had a parent that was also a space traveler.
Soyuz TMA-13 was a Soyuz mission to the International Space Station (ISS). The spacecraft was launched by a Soyuz-FG rocket at 07:01 GMT on 12 October 2008. It undocked at 02:55 GMT on 8 April 2009, performed a deorbit burn at 06:24, and landed at 07:16. By some counts, Soyuz TMA-13 is the 100th Soyuz spacecraft to be crewed.
The International Space Station (ISS) is a space station, or a habitable artificial satellite, in low Earth orbit. Its first component was launched into orbit in 1998, with the first long-term residents arriving in November 2000. It has been inhabited continuously since that date. The last pressurised module was fitted in 2011, and an experimental inflatable space habitat was added in 2016. The station is expected to operate until 2030. Development and assembly of the station continues, with several new elements scheduled for launch in 2019. The ISS is the largest human-made body in low Earth orbit and can often be seen with the naked eye from Earth. The ISS consists of pressurised habitation modules, structural trusses, solar arrays, radiators, docking ports, experiment bays and robotic arms. ISS components have been launched by Russian Proton and Soyuz rockets and American Space Shuttles.
Space tourism is space travel for recreational, leisure or business purposes. There are several different types of space tourism, including orbital, suborbital and lunar space tourism. To date, orbital space tourism has been performed only by the Russian Space Agency. Work also continues towards developing suborbital space tourism vehicles. This is being done by aerospace companies like Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic. In addition, SpaceX announced in 2018 that it is planning on sending two space tourists on a free-return trajectory around the Moon on the upper stage of SpaceX's BFR rocket, known as the Big Falcon Spaceship (BFS).
Garriott founded a new video game development company in 2009, called Portalarium.His current project is Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues where his primary role is as CEO and Creative Director.
Portalarium, Inc. is a video game developer based in Austin, Texas that was formed in September 2009 by Richard Garriott, together with his longtime game industry partners, Dallas Snell and Fred Schmidt. Portalarium marks Richard Garriott's first return to the video game industry since the release of his 2007 title Tabula Rasa. The name "Portalarium", as well as the company's motto, "We take you there," are intended as a continuity and reference to Garriott's prior two companies' names and respective mottoes; Origin Systems, "We Create Worlds," and Destination Games, "We have arrived."
Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues is a fantasy role-playing video game. Described as being a spiritual successor to the Ultima series, Shroud of the Avatar is developed by Austin, Texas-based developer Portalarium, with a team led by Richard Garriott as creative director, Starr Long as executive producer, Chris Spears as lead technical designer, and Tracy Hickman as lead story designer.
In 2011, Garriott married Laetitia de Cayeux. Both changed their last names to Garriott de Cayeux.
Laetitia Garriott de Cayeux is a French-American entrepreneur and was the president and COO of Escape Dynamics.
Richard was born in Cambridge, England,the son of American parents Helen Mary Garriott née Walker and Owen K. Garriott, one of NASA's first scientist-astronauts, who flew on Skylab 3 and Space Shuttle mission STS-9. He was raised in the United States from the age of about two months, in Nassau Bay, Texas.
Cambridge is a university city and the county town of Cambridgeshire, England, on the River Cam approximately 50 miles (80 km) north of London. At the United Kingdom Census 2011, its population was 123,867 including 24,506 students. Cambridge became an important trading centre during the Roman and Viking ages, and there is archaeological evidence of settlement in the area as early as the Bronze Age. The first town charters were granted in the 12th century, although modern city status was not officially conferred until 1951.
Owen Kay Garriott is an American electrical engineer and former NASA astronaut, who spent 60 days aboard the Skylab space station in 1973 during the Skylab 3 mission, and 10 days aboard Spacelab-1 on a Space Shuttle mission in 1983.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is an independent agency of the United States Federal Government responsible for the civilian space program, as well as aeronautics and aerospace research.
What Garriott later described as "my first real exposure to computers" occurred in 1975, during his freshman year of high school at Clear Creek High School. As he wanted more experience beyond the single one-semester BASIC class the school offered, and as a fan of The Lord of the Rings and Dungeons & Dragons , Garriott convinced the school to let him create a self-directed course in programming, in which he created fantasy computer games on the school's teletype machine.Garriott later estimated that he wrote 28 computer fantasy games during high school.
BASIC is a family of general-purpose, high-level programming languages whose design philosophy emphasizes ease of use. In 1964, John G. Kemeny and Thomas E. Kurtz designed the original BASIC language at Dartmouth College. They wanted to enable students in fields other than science and mathematics to use computers. At the time, nearly all use of computers required writing custom software, which was something only scientists and mathematicians tended to learn.
The Lord of the Rings is an epic high fantasy novel written by English author and scholar J. R. R. Tolkien. The story began as a sequel to Tolkien's 1937 fantasy novel The Hobbit, but eventually developed into a much larger work. Written in stages between 1937 and 1949, The Lord of the Rings is one of the best-selling novels ever written, with over 150 million copies sold.
Dungeons & Dragons is a fantasy tabletop role-playing game (RPG) originally designed by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson. It was first published in 1974 by Tactical Studies Rules, Inc. (TSR). The game has been published by Wizards of the Coast since 1997. It was derived from miniature wargames with a variation of Chainmail serving as the initial rule system. D&D's publication is commonly recognized as the beginning of modern role-playing games and the role-playing game industry.
In the summer of 1977, his parents sent him to the University of Oklahoma for a seven-week computer camp. Shortly after he arrived, some of the other boys attending the camp introduced themselves. When Garriott replied to their greeting of "Hi" with "Hello" they decided he sounded like he was from Britain, and gave him the nickname "British". Garriott uses the name to this day for his various gaming characters, including Ultima character Lord British and Tabula Rasa character General British;however, despite his nickname and birthplace, his parents moved to Texas when he was a baby and his accent is American rather than British.
Garriott began writing computer games in 1974. His first games were created on and for teletype terminals. The code was stored on paper tape spools and the game was displayed as an ongoing print-out on the spools of printer paper produced by teletype machines. In summer 1979, Garriott worked at a ComputerLand store where he had his first encounter with Apple computers. Inspired by their video monitors with color graphics, he began to add perspective view to his own games. After he created Akalabeth for fun, the owner of the store convinced Garriott it might sell. Garriott spent US$200 printing copies of a manual and cover sheet that his mother had drawn, then he put copies of the game in Ziploc bags to sell at the store. Although Garriott sold fewer than a dozen copies of Akalabeth at the store, one copy made it to California Pacific, who signed a deal with him. The game sold over 30,000 copies, and Garriott received $5 for each copy sold.Akalabeth is considered the first published Computer Role Playing Game. In the fall, Garriott entered the University of Texas at Austin, joined the school's fencing team and later joined the Society for Creative Anachronism. He created Ultima I while at the university. It was published by California Pacific Computers and sold in Ziploc plastic bags, as was common in those days.
Steve Jackson Games (SJG) maintained a friendly relationship with Garriott and, when he visited the SJG office one day, Garriott was so impressed by the artwork of Denis Loubet that he commissioned him to paint the cover of Ultima I (1980). Loubet subsequently painted many other covers for Garriott's games.
In the early 1980s, Garriott continued to develop the Ultima series of computer games, eventually leaving university to author them on a full-time basis.Originally programmed for the Apple II, the Ultima series later became available on several platforms. Ultima II was published by Sierra On-Line, as they were the only company that would agree to publish it in a box together with a printed cloth map. By the time he developed Ultima III, Garriott, together with his brother Robert, their father Owen and Chuck Bueche established their own video game publisher, Origin Systems, to handle publishing and distribution, in part due to controversy with Sierra over royalties for the PC port of Ultima II.
Garriott sold Origin Systems to Electronic Arts in September 1992 for 30 million dollars.In 1997, he coined the term massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), giving a new identity to the nascent genre previously known as graphical MUDs. In 1999 and 2000, EA canceled all of Origin's new development projects, including Privateer Online, and Harry Potter Online. In the midst of these events, Garriott resigned from the company and returned to the industry by forming Destination Games in April 2000 with his brother and Starr Long (the producer of Ultima Online ). Once Garriott's non-compete agreement with EA expired a year later, Destination partnered with NCsoft where he acted as a producer and designer of MMORPGs. After that, he became the CEO of NCsoft Austin, also known as NC Interactive.
Tabula Rasa failed to generate a significant amount of money during its initial release, despite its seven-year development period. On November 11, 2008, in an open letter on the Tabula Rasa website, Garriott announced his plans to leave NCsoft to pursue new interests sparked by his spaceflight experiences. Later, however, Garriott claimed that the letter was forged as a means of forcing him out of his position and that he had had no intention of leaving.On November 24, 2008 NCsoft announced that it planned to end the live service of Tabula Rasa. The servers shut down on February 28, 2009, after a period of free play from January 10 onward for existing account holders.
In July 2010, an Austin District Court awarded Garriott US$28 million in his lawsuit against NCsoft, finding that the company did not appropriately handle his departure in 2008. In October 2011, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the judgment.
Garriott founded the company Portalarium in 2009. The company is developing Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues , a spiritual successor to the Ultima series, with Garriott having remarked that had they been able to secure the rights to the Ultima intellectual property from Electronic Arts, the game could have become Ultima Online 2 in name.On March 8, 2013, Portalarium launched a Kickstarter campaign for Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues. An early access version of the game was released on Steam on November 24, 2014, and the game was fully released in March 2018.
In 1983 Softline reported that "Garriott wants to go into space but doesn't see it happening in the predictable future ... He has frequently joked with his father about stowing away on a spaceship, and recently his speculations have been sounding uncomfortably realistic".The income from the success of Garriott's video game career allowed him to pursue his interest in spaceflight, and the sale of Origin Systems allowed him to invest in Space Adventures and purchase the ticket to become the first private citizen to fly into space. However, Garriott suffered financial setbacks in 2001 after the dot-com bubble burst, and he was forced to sell his seat to Dennis Tito.
He then says he returned to making games, to make money, and once he had enough, put down a non-refundable deposit to go into space. During the mandatory medical examination, they found he had a hemangioma on his liver, which could cause potentially fatal internal bleeding if there was a rapid depressurization of a spacecraft. Told he had to either give up his large deposit, or undergo life-threatening surgery, he decided to have the operation, and now has a 16-inch scar from it. He spent a year in Russia training before he launched into space.
On September 28, 2007, Space Adventures announced that Garriott would fly to the International Space Station in October 2008 as a self-funded private astronaut, reportedly paying $30 million USD.On October 12, 2008, Garriott became the second second-generation space traveler (after Sergei Volkov) and the first offspring of an American astronaut to go into space, and the second person to wear the British Union flag in space. The Soyuz docked with the station on October 14. His father, Owen K. Garriott, was at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan for the launch of his son and was in attendance when a Soyuz capsule returned with his son twelve days later.
During his spaceflight, Garriott took part in several education outreach efforts. As a part of that outreach program he worked with the free Metro newspaper in London, which provided him with a special edition containing details of British primary school student's space experiment concepts which Richard took to the ISS. The Metro has claimed as a result that it was the first newspaper in space.He is an Amateur Radio Operator (callsign W5KWQ), and during his stay on the International Space Station (ISS), communicated with students and other Amateur Radio operators using Amateur Radio. Garriott also transmitted photographs using the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) slow-scan television system. Garriott also placed a geocache while aboard the ISS.
Garriott also worked with the Windows on Earth project, which provides an interactive, virtual view of Earth as seen from the ISS.Garriott used Windows on Earth software to assist in the selection of locations on Earth to photograph, and the public were able to use the same online tool to track the ISS and see the view Richard was experiencing out an ISS window. Richard's photographs, along with images taken by his astronaut father Owen Garriott in 1973, will be available to the public through Windows on Earth, adding a personal element to studies of Earth and how Earth has changed over time.
Tracy Hickman wrote a screenplay for Garriott, for the first science-fiction film shot in space, Apogee of Fear .
On October 24, Russian cosmonauts of ISS Expedition 17, Sergei Volkov and Oleg Kononenko, along with private astronaut Richard Garriott, aboard Soyuz TMA-12 capsule, landed safely (ideal) at 09:36 (03:36GMT, 07:36 Moscow time), 55 miles north of Arkalyk, Kazakhstan. They were lifted to the Kazakhstan Baikonur space center by helicopter, and then flew to Zvezdny Gorodok (Star City), Moscow Region.
On June 3, 2009, the New York Daily News announced that Garriott would officiate at the first wedding to be held in zero gravity.The wedding took place in a specially modified Boeing 727-200 aircraft, G-Force One, operated by Zero Gravity Corporation, or ZERO-G, a company offering weightless flight experiences, of which he is the co-founder.
In 2010 he released a documentary, Man on a Mission: Richard Garriott's Road to the Stars.
In 1986, Garriott helped start the Challenger Center for Space Science Education. His high school science teacher was June Scobee-Rogers, wife of Challenger Shuttle Commander Dick Scobee, who piloted the STS-51-L mission. STS-51-L was intended to carry the first teacher in space flight, before it and its crew were tragically lost on lift off. Scobee drew on Garriott's early leadership in gaming, to help design what has become approximately 50 global interactive networked facilities, where students study about and perform simulated space missions.
Garriott bought the Luna 21 lander and the Lunokhod 2 rover (both currently on lunar surface) from the Lavochkin Association for $68,500 in December 1993 at a Sotheby's auction in New York(although the catalog incorrectly lists lot 68A as Luna 17/Lunokhod 1). Garriott notes that while UN treaties ban governmental ownership of property off earth, corporations and private citizens retain such rights. Lunokhod 2 is still in use with mirrors aligned to bounce lasers such that precise earth moon distances can be measured. With his vehicle "still in use", Garriott claims property rights to the territory surveyed by Lunokhod 2. This may be the first valid claim for private ownership of extraterrestrial territory. Lunokhod 2 held the distance record for miles traveled on another planetary body, until surpassed by the NASA Opportunity Rover in 2014.
Garriott acted as corner man for professional boxer and friend Jesús Chávez in his first title defense against Erik Morales in 2004.
He is also an avid magician and magic collector, and appeared on the cover of the January 2008 issue of MUM , the magazine of the Society of American Magicians.The issue featured an article about an event hosted at Garriott's home involving several of the world's best magicians.
While not directly related to stage magic, Garriot is a fan of the collectible card game Magic: The Gathering, and designed a card in the Magic 2015 expansion set.
Garriott built a haunted house/museum at his residence called Britannia Manor in Austin, Texas.
Garriott promotes private space flight as vice-chairman of the board of directors for Space Adventures.
Garriott is a trustee of the X PRIZE Foundation.
Garriott performed the first Zero-G wedding on June 20, 2009.
Garriott's collections were featured on the June 10, 2012 episode of the Oddities TV series.
In 2007, he co-founded Planetary Power, Inc. with Eric C. Anderson and Miguel Forbes.
Garriott received an Honorary Doctorate of Science from Queen Mary University London in 2011.
Garriott provided vocals for a track on the Shooter Jennings 2016 album Countach.
Garriott is an adviser of SpaceVR, a virtual reality space exploration company.
Garriott is an advocate of Personal rapid transit and the system used at London's Heathrow Airport.
Richard and wife Laetitia Garriott de Cayeux had their first child, Kinga Shuilong Garriott de Cayeux, on June 30, 2012.Their second child, Ronin Phi Garriott de Cayeux, was born on July 28, 2014.
|Game name||First released||Garriott's role(s)|
|D&D#1||1977||Game designer & programmer|
|Akalabeth: World of Doom||1979||Game designer & programmer|
|Ultima I: The First Age of Darkness||1981||Original conceptor, programmer & graphic artist|
|Ultima II: The Revenge of the Enchantress||1982||Game designer|
|Ultima III: Exodus||1983||Project director|
|Ultima IV: Quest of the Avatar||1985||Project director|
|Autoduel||1985||Programmer & designer|
|Ultima V: Warriors of Destiny||1988||Designer, writer & programmer|
|Ultima VI: The False Prophet||1990||Designer, producer, sound effect worker, writer & voice actor|
|Worlds of Ultima: The Savage Empire||1990||Executive producer|
|Ultima: Worlds of Adventure 2: Martian Dreams||1991||Creative director|
|Ultima: Runes of Virtue||1991||Creative director|
|Ultima Underworld: The Stygian Abyss||1992||Director & voice actor|
|Ultima VII: The Black Gate||1992||Director & producer|
|Ultima VII: Forge of Virtue||1993||Creative assistance & producer|
|Ultima VII Part Two: Serpent Isle||1993||Creative director & audio team member|
|Ultima VII Part Two: The Silver Seed||1993||Director & voice actor|
|Ultima Underworld II: Labyrinth of Worlds||1993||Director & voice actor|
|Ultima VIII: Pagan||1994||Producer|
|Ultima: Runes of Virtue II||1994||Creative director & additional design|
|Ultima VIII: The Lost Vale||Cancelled||Producer|
|Ultima Online: The Second Age||1998||Executive designer|
|Ultima IX: Ascension||1999||Director|
|Lineage II||2003||Executive producer|
|City of Heroes||2004||Executive producer|
|City of Villains||2005||Executive management|
|Tabula Rasa||2007||Executive producer|
|Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues||2018||Creative director|
Ultima is a series of open world fantasy role-playing video games from Origin Systems, Inc. Ultima was created by Richard Garriott. The series is one of the most significant in computer game history and is considered, alongside Wizardry and Might and Magic, to be one of the establishers of the CRPG genre. Several games of the series are considered seminal entries in their genre, and each installment introduced new innovations which then were widely copied by other games. Electronic Arts own the brand.
Lunokhod 2 was the second of two unmanned lunar rovers landed on the Moon by the Soviet Union as part of the Lunokhod programme.
Origin Systems, Inc. was an American video game developer based in Austin, Texas, that was active from 1983 to 2004. It is best known for the Ultima and Wing Commander series.
Space Adventures, Ltd. is a Virginia, USA-based space tourism company founded in 1998 by Eric C. Anderson. As of 2010, offerings include zero-gravity atmospheric flights, orbital spaceflights, and other spaceflight-related experiences including cosmonaut training, spacewalk training, and launch tours. Plans announced thus far include sub-orbital and lunar spaceflights. As of October 2009, seven clients have participated in the orbital spaceflight program with Space Adventures, including one person who took two separate trips to space.
Yury Valentinovich Lonchakov is a Russian former cosmonaut and a veteran of three space missions. He has spent 200 days in space and has conducted two career spacewalks.
Destination Games was an American computer game development company created in April 2000 by Richard Garriott, Robert Garriott and Starr Long, following their departure from Origin Systems.
NCSoft is a South Korean video game developer. The company has produced Lineage, City of Heroes, WildStar, Guild Wars, Aion, Blade & Soul, Exteel and Master X Master.
Edward Michael "Mike"/"Spanky" Fincke is an American astronaut who formerly held the American record for the most time in space. His record was broken by Scott Kelly on October 16, 2015. He was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but considers its suburb Emsworth to be his hometown. He is a United States Air Force officer and a NASA astronaut, and served two tours aboard the International Space Station as a flight engineer and commander. He flew on one Space Shuttle mission, STS-134 as a Mission Specialist. Fincke is conversant in Japanese and Russian. He is married to Renita Saikia, and together they have three children; son Chandra and daughters Tarali and Surya.
Scott Jennings, also known as Lum the Mad, is an American commentator on MMORPG games. He is best known for creating a website, The Rantings of Lum The Mad, a pioneer blog, which existed from 1998 to 2001, when Jennings was hired by MMO developer Mythic Entertainment, where he remained until 2006.
Richard Garriott's Tabula Rasa was an MMORPG developed by Destination Games and published by NCsoft, designed in part by some of the creators of Ultima Online including Richard Garriott. The game was a role-playing video game that blended certain shooter aspects into the combat system. It was officially released to retail on November 2, 2007, with customers that pre-ordered the game allowed access to the live servers from October 30, 2007. The development team released updates, called "Deployments," nearly every month following launch. The game required a monthly subscription.
Robert K. Garriott is an American computer game industry figure and entrepreneur. He co-founded Origin Systems and Destination Games with his brother, Richard Garriott, and was the CEO of NCsoft-North America until 2008. He is the second-eldest son of NASA astronaut Owen K. Garriott.
Soyuz TMA-12 was a Soyuz mission to the International Space Station (ISS) which was launched by a Soyuz FG rocket at 11:16 UTC on 8 April 2008. It docked to the Pirs module of the station on 10 April 2008. Landing occurred at 03:37 on 24 October. It was the first nominal landing in three missions, following separation failures on the Soyuz TMA-10 and 11 spacecraft.
Sergey Aleksandrovich Volkov is a retired Russian cosmonaut and engineer. He was a member of three missions to the International Space Station, spending more than a year in total in space. During his missions he did four spacewalks lasting more than 23 hours in total. Volkov retired from the Cosmonaut group in February 2017.
Windows on Earth is a museum exhibit, website, and exploration tool, developed by TERC, Inc., and the Association of Space Explorers, that enables the public to explore an interactive, virtual view of Earth from space. In addition, the tool has been selected by NASA to help astronauts identify targets for photography from the International Space Station (ISS).
Major Timothy Nigel Peake is a British Army Air Corps officer, European Space Agency astronaut and a former International Space Station (ISS) crew member.
Starr McAuley Long is an American game developer, a long time collaborator with "Lord British" at the companies Origin Systems (1992–2000), Destination Games (2000–2008), and Portalarium (2013–present). In 1997, Long was the original director of the early graphical multiplayer game Ultima Online, and from 2008–2013 he was executive producer at The Walt Disney Company, where he created and managed several educational games and apps for Club Penguin and the Disney Connected Learning platform. In early 2008, he was listed as one of the Top 20 Most Influential People in the MMO industry. As of 2013, he is again partnered with Garriott at Portalarium, where they are working on the new game Shroud of the Avatar.
PCG: 'How did you come by the alias of Lord British? You're obviously not English. Richard Garriott: 'Actually, that's not true ... I am a British citizen. That said, I only lived there for about two months prior to moving to the States.'
Richard Garriott first coined the term MMORPG in 1997.
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