A Veteran With Character: Roger Hector Speaks
May 22, 2008 Page 5 of 9
So you have a long and storied history. How many companies have you worked with, and which ones and in what capacities?
Roger Hector: I started with Atari in 1976. That was the old Nolan Bushnell era. I truly started as kind of a low-level designer artist guy, and through the years I was there, I wound up working my way up to head of R&D of the company. They were a pretty good sized company at that time. But I left the company -- I don't remember which year it was -- around 1982, roughly.
Around the crash?
RH: Yeah, it was actually just prior to the crash.
Oh, that's lucky.
RH: Yeah. Well, it's not like I could say that we could see it coming, that's just the way it worked out. But we left.
We being whom?
RH: Ed Rothberg, Howie Delman, and myself. The other guys were real prominent engineers. Rothberg was the programmer of Battlezone. Howie Delman had also been a programmer, but in addition to programming, he was also a hardware engineer. The three of us had worked together. We were good friends.
We left Atari and started our own company. Originally it was called Videa. We started doing contract game development, and produced a couple of VCS cartridges that ultimately were sold back to Atari, but then were never produced, because Atari went through their big crash.
Did you ever release those, by the way?
RH: No. Those games were fully finished. In fact, they were sold originally to 20th Century Fox. They bought them, and before they could publish anything, they collapsed, so the rights of these games came back to us as the creators. So we turned around and sold them to Atari, and then Atari collapsed and so they never got made.
Do you still have those?
RH: They still exist, yeah.
Because there's that rabid fan base out there that would love to see those. You should give that out to them somehow.
RH: Somehow, yeah. I think it may be that either Howie or Ed have shepherded those things along. I haven't paid too much attention to them. But I know that there is a fan base out there that has a lot of interest in really old, obscure things like that.
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