Group: Crazy Nick's Software Picks


In the summer of 1992 Sierra combined mini arcade sequences, casino and board games that were originally included in various adventure and Hoyle games, and released these mini compilations as budget releases in blister cards under the title Crazy Nick's Software Picks. The name "Crazy Nick", according to John Williams, is inspired by Nick Medici, who "was their direct marketing manager way back in the day. He did kind of look like his cartoon. Fast-talking and, yeah, kinda crazy."

Five Crazy Nick releases were made:

- King Graham's Board Game Challenge: this includes Checkers and Backgammon, and is originally part of Hoyle Official Book of Games Volume 3: Great Board games.

- Roger Wilco's Spaced Out Game Pack: this includes Ms. Astro Chicken and Monolith Burger Building (originally both arcade sequences in Space Quest 4), as well as Sand Skimmer (originally an arcade sequence in Space Quest 1 VGA remake)

- Leisure Suit Larry's Casino: not to be confused with 1998's Leisure Suit Larry's Casino, this Crazy Nick release contains Slot Machine and Blackjack (originally both mini games in Leisure Suit Larry 1 VGA) and Poker (originally a mini game in Leisure Suit Larry 5).

- Parlor Games with Laura Bow: this includes Yacht and Dominoes, and is also originally part of Hoyle Official Book of Games Volume 3: Great Board games.

- Robin Hood's Game of Skill and Chance: this includes Archery, Nine Men's Morris and Sticks, all small arcade and puzzle sequences originally included in Conquests of the Longbow.

All Nick's Picks releases work under DOS, comprise of a single 3.5" disk and have VGA graphics. When starting up each of the releases, a splash screen appears with selection buttons for the available games, as well as an 'exit' and 'About' button, which includes the game credits.

The same team of people put all five Nick's Picks budget releases together, but each release also lists the credits of the original game(s) design team(s).

Nick's Picks were directed by Bill Davis, produced by Tammy Dargan and Tony Caudill. The software supervisor was J. Mark Hood, lead programmer Thaddeus M. Pritchard, and Mike Brosius handled the quality assurance. There is also a special thanks to Randy MacNeill.

In InterAction Magazine Volume 5 Number 4: Winter 1992 additional Nick's Picks were announced with all new arcade adventures rather than minigames extracted from existing games. Strangely, they were announced to be with EGA graphics, which presumably was a typo in the article. These planned releases, which were never released, were the following:

- Paragon: Wired for Action: Your life hangs by a wire as you make your way through the 20 levels of Paragon. On each level, you must collect the required treasures, then roll down the exit tunnel.

- Rescue Rover: Attack of the Robots: Robots have kidnapped your dog. Each robot room is a new test of your wits, requiring you to manipulate mirrors, boxes, and balls in your quest to get past the deadly automations.

- Slordax: The Unknown enemy: Launch a strike on the evil Slordax, protecting the peaceful realms of the galaxy. Fire up your star cruiser and hang on for the fight of your life.

- Dangerous Dave in the Haunted Mansion: Explore a creepy old house as you make your way past zombies, malevolent dwarves, creeping ooze, giant spiders, and a host of other nasty creatures. Your only protection is your trusty shotgun (and maybe some treasure you'll find along the way).

- Hover Tank 3-D: Operation Death Trap: Guide your hover tank through twisting city mazes to rescue humans from their mutant oppressors. The clock is ticking, though, and you'll have to move fast.