Paul Reiche III began being of interest to anyone when he began working for TSR
in 1981 at the tender age of nineteen. While he was there, he published the Dungeons & Dragons
module The Temple of Poseidon
and worked on a Gamma World
project entitled The Legion of Gold
, but most people would agree that his most enduring contribution to the world of role-playing games
was the creation of the unprecedented insectoid thri-kreen
race, by which time he was already dabbling in a long-latent interest in the budding field of computer game
After having gotten his feet wet releasing a data disk (The Keys of Acheron) for Automated Simulations' game Hellfire Warrior in 1983 he jumped right in and, working with Jon Freeman and Anne Westfall, designed the sleeper classic Archon. Paired with Murder on the Zinderneuf, he began a long period of contracting for Electronic Arts over numerous platforms and designed Mail Order Monsters, Archon II: Adept and World Tour Golf. He eventually (1989) did quite a lot of work for EA cleaning up Starflight 2 but was ordered back to work on his own project at that time, a little ditty called The Adventures of Elmo in the 4th Dimension, which was eventually killed when his programmer dropped out of the race.
Though we may never know what adventures Elmo had through time, we should be thankful for that piece of ill fortune as it resulted in his meeting Fred Ford and forming Toys for Bob with him. Within eighteen months they had knocked together the definitive 2D space shoot-'em-up Star Control, after which they contracted under Accolade to produce in 1992 the sequel viewed by many as a high point from which the gaming industry has never since recovered: Star Control 2: The Ur-Quan Masters. Paul was largely responsible for the game's most enthralling feature - the alternately riveting and roll-on-the-floor dialogue between the player's human captain and representatives of a myriad of alien races.
Following this epic achievement, Paul and Fred left Accolade to pursue gaming innovations on other platforms under other companies, including 1994's Crystal Dynamics release The Horde for the 3DO and Strategic Simulations, Inc.'s update on Paul's old franchise, the forgettable Archon Ultra, scraped together using the same engine used by The Horde.
He's been lying low for the last several years, only releasing the Unholy War in 1998 through Eidos for the Playstation and another spin under the same engine, Little Witching Mischiefs for the Japanese market. No one knows what he's been up to for the past few years, but a steady and devoted community of fans have fingers crossed hoping for Paul to shift in his slumber, roll over and rock the gaming industry once more.