Space Quest VI: Roger Wilco and The Spinal Frontier Review
Hello everybody, Shaun Meyers here to share my thoughts on my journey through Space Quest VI: Roger Wilco and The Spinal Frontier by Dynamix and Sierra On-Line. I received a copy of the game from our friends at GOG but like with all of my reviews, this had no effect on my opinion of the game.
SQ6 was the final game in the long running series but it was also the most technologically advanced in the series. It ran on Sierra’s SCI32 engine which allowed for high quality Super VGA graphics in 256 colors and 640×480 resolution. This release also got rid of the pull down action bar and instead utilized the more traditional point and click interface with all of the actions at the bottom of the screen.
The vast majority of the game was created by Josh Mandel with Scott Murphy (one of the original Guys from Andromeda) as a story consultant. Josh wound up leaving Sierra prior to the game’s completion due to internal strife and Scott was asked to take over the completion of the game. Unfortunately, Sierra wound up marketing the game as created solely by Scott instead of Josh even though it was requested by Scott not to do so. In a 2006 interview Josh spoke about his disappointment with the uneven puzzle design and implementation with the game. He had originally designed a comic book CD that was designed to coincide with the datacorder puzzle and give you hints on to how to solve it. This was ultimately cut from the game and instead the solution to the puzzle was printed in the game manual and wound up making people think that it was a form of copy protection. Josh worked on the comic book segment for months and was quite proud of it; it’s unfortunate the content got cut though, sounds like it’d have been pretty cool.
The CD-Rom version of SQ6 and Windows 95 were produced in the same disc pressing factory and due to errors in manufacturing some copies of Space Quest 6 shipped with Windows 95 on the disc instead, with the OS’s OEM code printed on the disc’s surface.
The original subtitle to Space Quest 6 was also “Where in Corpsman Santiago is Roger Wilco” but due to legal threats from the creators of Carmen Sandiego, the name was changed.
Now that our history lesson has concluded it’s time to move on to the game itself!
Space Quest VI picks up right where Space Quest V left off, except Roger is on trial for disobeying orders – despite saving the galaxy from the pukoids. Roger is stripped of his captain status and kicked out of the StarCon Academy but is reinstated as Janitor Second Class aboard the DeepShip 86 spacecraft.
The story in SQ6 is a bit shorter than the one presented in SQ5 at only 500 points. But this time the game is entirely voice acted and Gary Owens (voice of Space Ghost) returns as narrator. The story itself a bit darker and a tiny bit more mature than the previous games but it’s still a PG rated game. There’s also a joke in the game that mentions the ESRB ratings board and how they wanted to avoid an adults only rating.
Graphics wise, the game looks pretty amazing for its time and the animations are incredibly smooth. The game also utilizes some 3D effects for space ships and landing sequences as well.
However, Space Quest VI wasn’t my favorite in the series despite its pretty impressive technology (my favorite out of all of them is definitely SQV). It has some excellent graphics and a pretty entertaining story but it didn’t feel as engaging as the previous game. Still, if you enjoyed the rest of the series, this one’s worth checking out, at least it won’t take as long to finish.
Thanks for taking the time to watch my videos and reading my reviews for the series folks. It’s been one heck of a journey and boy am I glad it’s finally over. Now it’s on to new adventures elsewhere!
Happy gaming folks! – Shaun Meyers (Kyo Akiara) out!