Space Quest 6: Roger Wilco in the Spinal Frontier

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Space Quest 6: Roger Wilco in the Spinal Frontier Description

Space Quest 6 was released in 1995 and ran on the last version of the SCI engine, SCI32. This allowed it to use Super VGA graphics with 256 colors at 640x480 resolution. Unlike other SCI games, it didn't have the interface in a pull down bar at the top of the screen, but instead used a "verb bar" window along the bottom of the screen, similar to LucasArts' SCUMM engine. The graphics style was also more cartoonish than in previous games. Gary Owens served as narrator once again.

This game was the last to be released in the Space Quest series. Having defeated the diabolical pukoid mutants in Space Quest V, Captain Roger Wilco triumphantly returns to StarCon headquarters - only to be court-martialed due to breaking StarCon regulations while saving the galaxy. He's busted down to Janitor Second Class, and assigned to the SCS DeepShip 86 (a parody of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine), commanded by Commander Kielbasa, a Cowardly Lion look-alike whose name is a play on the feline Kilrathi from the computer game series Wing Commander.

The game's subtitle comes from the final portion, in which Roger has to undergo miniaturization and enter the body of a shipmate and romantic interest. (This segment also provided the game's original subtitle, Where in Corpsman Santiago is Roger Wilco?, which was not used due to legal threats from the makers of the Carmen Sandiego products.)

Josh Mandel designed the majority of Space Quest 6 (with Scott Murphy on-board in a "creative consultant" capacity) but had to leave the project shortly before completion due to internal strife with Sierra. Sierra asked Scott Murphy to complete the game, and then (reportedly against Murphy's wishes) promoted SQ 6 as if the former "Guy from Andromeda" was solely responsible for it. As an additional result of this change in designers, some puzzles - primarily in the latter stages of the game - were shoddily implemented due to lack of communication. In a 2006 interview[1] with Adventure Classic Gaming, Mandel spoke candidly about his disappointment with the uneven puzzle implementation and design in the game, "One of the inventory items cut was a comic book CD in Nigel’s room that was fully readable and had all the hints to the Datacorder puzzle. From a writing and design standpoint, it was fully finished, and I know that Barry Smith had started the artwork. I don’t understand why it was cut. But the comic book content was something I’d worked on for months, and it was something that I was uncharacteristically proud of...I think it would’ve been one of the greatest parody sequences in the SQ series. So not only was I very upset not to see it in the game, but the fact that they had to put the Datacorder hints in the manual, leading player to think it was meant to be copy protection, disturbed me greatly."

An obtuse easter egg can be found in Space Quest 6 by entering the code for "Bjorn Chow" (the Bjorn being a parody of Star Trek's Borg) into the "Mr. Soylent Clear" food replicator that is only obtainable in the Space Quest 6 demo (which is: 7469410). The demo itself had a short, and separate, story with dialogue and puzzles not seen in the main game.

Space Quest 6: Roger Wilco in the Spinal Frontier - additional information

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Space Quest 6: Roger Wilco in the Spinal Frontier - Cover Art DOS