Officials from the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences (AIAS) have announced that Richard “Lord British” Garriott, creator of the seminal Ultima series of role-playing games, will be the latest inductee into the organization’s Hall of Fame.
Garriott will be the ninth industry figure to be included in the Hall of Fame, following previous inductees Shigeru Miyamoto, Will Wright, Yu Suzuki, John Carmack, Sid Meier, Hironobu Sakaguchi, Trip Hawkins and Peter Molyneux. A new recipient for the honor is voted on by the academy’s board of directors each year.
Garriott is best known as the creator of the Ultima Series, including Ultima Online, and for founding the now defunct developer Origin Systems. The nickname Lord British was given to him at school, but a character with that name (played by Garriott in Ultima Online) was soon incorporated in the Ultima mythos. His first game was role-playing title Akalabeth for the Apple II in 1979, programmed at the age of nineteen.
After leaving Origin Systems in 2000, Garriot formed developer Destination Games with his brother Robert and Starr Long. A partnership was announced between the company and Korean publisher NCsoft in May 2001 and the studio was renamed NCsoft Austin.
"Richard Garriott has inspired countless game designers over the past 20 years and his influence can be seen in many of today's most popular games," said Ted Price, president of Insomniac Games. "He has become an icon inside and out of the games industry; because of his accomplishments and leadership within the field of interactive entertainment, Garriott deserves to be a member of the AIAS Hall of Fame."