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Frederik Pohl's Gateway

Adventure Frederik Pohl's Gateway 1

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Legend Entertainment
Legend Entertainment
By the year 2077, Earth had become overcrowded, and almost depleted of any resources. Mankind took to Venus, hoping to be able to survive extinction by colonising other planets. As it turns out, mankind was not the first race to set foot on Venus. Intricate networks of tunnels crafted hundreds of thousands of years before were discovered. The alien civilisation that was responsible for this was dubbed "The Heechee".

An explorer called Sylvester Macklin stumbled onto a fully functional spacecraft, and managed to get it to start. Much to his delight, it ended up taking him to a gigantic Heechee space station. As he ran out of food and water, he sent a final distress signal to Earth, hoping someone would notice, and be able to use the station. The signal was picked up and shortly after the space station was taken into use by NASA.

Containing hundreds of working spaceships, the station turned out to be a gateway to the universe, and was brought under the control of a new corporation called Gateway Enterprise, which would be responsible for managing Gateway on behalf of all of mankind.

The Heechee ships all seemed to be programmed with specific travel-plans, and while scientists struggled to figure out the controls, explorers took their chances and travelled to the predefined destinations. Some never returned. Most did, without any notable results, but a few lucky explorers managed to recover valuable resources.

You won the lottery, which included a 10 day long stay on Gateway, as well as the right to take part on an exploration mission. You will need to attend a class to handle the ship, and start off your exploration.

The game is a traditional Legend adventure, which means it's essentially a text adventure with a few rather static graphics, an accompanied by a music score. You can interact by either manually typing instructions, using the commands-list on the left side of the screen and the "Room" list in the middle, or by clicking within the picture (which will typically result in you looking at something).

The game itself is generously extended with animation videos. Seeing most of them are recurring over and over again, you can skip them by hitting "ENTER".

The game is split into 3 parts:

1. Gateway Prospector; you will start exploring other worlds, and eventually make your way into the exclusive Orion program.
2. Other Worlds: In this stage of the game, you will investigate 4 different planets, in order to activate a cloaking mechanism that will hide mankind from a destructive race called the Assassins.
3. Endgame: Scientists discovered a fifth step is necessary to activate the cloaking device. Seeing you're most familiar with the whole system so far, you're tasked with activating the final part.

Personally, I found Gateway one of he more intriguing of the Legend Entertainment adventures, due to the story line.

Later, Legend released a successor to Gateway called Gateway II: Homeworld.
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