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Star Trek: The Kobayashi Alternative

computer game | book

Few series, if any, have made as large a pop culture impact as "Star Trek." When it first aired in 1966, the television show failed to make a large impression, and NBC cancelled it after only three seasons. However, over the years it has amassed a cult following, several spin-off shows, a movie series, and a library of novels and comics. Beginning with a board game in 1967, developers released many forms of interactive entertainment involving the beloved "Star Trek" characters. Mike Mayfield developed the first "Star Trek" video game in 1971. Entitled simply "Star Trek," this text-based computer game spread to most home computers by the end of the 1970s, and became the first of its kind to sell more than one million copies. It showed that games based on the series could be successful, and paved the way for the release of many more video games. In 1985, Simon & Schuster released "Star Trek: The Kobayashi Alternative" for the Apple II Plus, Apple IIe, and Apple IIc. The plot of this text adventure game revolves around the crew of the starship "Enterprise" and their efforts to test out a replacement for the Kobayashi Maru test (a scenario that tests a captain’s ability to handle a no-win situation). Hikaru Sulu, the helmsman for the "Enterprise," and the ship he has been commanding are missing, and it is up to Captain James T. Kirk and his crew to track them down. While expectations for "The Kobayashi Alternative" were high, reviewers and players ultimately criticized the final result for the amount of bugs present in the game. In its review, "Computer Gaming World" magazine wrote that while the game was "a faithful recreation of the [original series,]" the bugs and game play made it "less than what it should have been." Nevertheless, Simon & Schuster released a follow-up game in 1986 entitled "Star Trek: The Promethean Prophecy." More than four decades after the original "Star Trek" series aired, the franchise remains popular. J.J. Abrams and Paramount released a rebooted movie version of the series in 2009, followed by its sequel in 2013. Over fifty different video games featuring the beloved "Star Trek" characters exist, allowing fans to go "where no one has gone before."

  • Manufacturer: Simon & Schuster, Inc.
  • Material: printed cardboard | printed paper | molded plastic
  • Origin: New York, NY
  • Object ID: 105.941
  • Credit Line: Gift of Maureen W. Baran
Creative Commons License