A very interesting entry in the GTW archives comes in the form of Hyperion 2. The game has been sitting on FTP’s for a while now, but has a story behind it and also helped uncover something rather useful for HVSC.
Hyperion 2 is actually a sequel of a Hyperion 1 which has yet to be found, and was developed by Chris Caress and Lee Cawley, who later went on to work on the other GTW – Obliterator. This was one of their first efforts together, and was rushed together to
get ready for a PCW show to show off to publishers.
It was so rushed, that no time was there to program in sophisticated alien attack patterns. Instead, both Chris and Lee had to stay up all night and record joystick based attack patterns for every enemy for the whole game. Very painstaking, but if the
guys were to get the game done in time for the show, then it had to be done.
Music was created by Matt Gray, including a tune which had never been heard before, and one that was later used elsewhere. Matt was apparently unhappy that his tunes were used without him getting any money for it. No doubt Matt would have got paid, but unfortunately the game was never to find a publisher.
After pitching the game around to various publishers, the game was never picked up by anyone. One such publisher was Mastertronic, where a disk was sent in by Chris to their submissions department. This is where the story takes an interesting turn…
Upon submission to Mastertronic, doing work experience was none other than Chris Young (Of ‘Quota’ fame). Mastertronic had sadly not felt the game was good enough for their label (even though they had released some dire titles in the past), and Chris was passed the disk to take a look at. Chris then passed on the disk onto none other than Jason Kelk, who has had the disk ever since. In recent times, Jason remembered about the game and found the disk and released the contents. This was great news for the games support, but also for HVSC, as a long lost Matt Gray tune was uncovered in the process.
Surprised at the game’s release was Chris Caress and Lee Cawley, the reason for it coming out is now here. Not that the guys are upset, they are happy that the game has seemingly survived against all odds.
This is it really for this particular GTW. As the case opens, it is closing. Nothing to search for, developers found… Unless Matt Gray has something to say about the game, this is indeed case closed.
Case closed before it was even opened…
Contributions: Jason Kelk, Chris Caress, Lee Cawley
Chris Caress and Lee Cawley speak to GTW about work on Hyperion 2...
"Good lord, I'd forgotten about this one. Lee Cawley, his then wife Lynda and I set-up a company to work on games. This was (one of) the results. We actually did a version 1 and a version II. I don't remember why we did number 2, however number one never really went anywhere and in the end neither did 2. This was a big problem for us this game, the demo had excellent music and it was leaked out from somewhere and turned up in all manner of C64 demos. The problem with this was we had yet to pay the musician and he was less than pleased. How the hell this disk has survived so long is a total mystery to me. I'm sure Lee will remember a lot more about it than I do.
Really this was just a demo to show-off what we could do if asked. Personally I preferred the look of Hyperion 1. I have to laugh, when I remember this though, to get this demo ready in time, we had to have some quick way of doing all the attack patterns for the alien ships. What I ended up doing was recording joystick movements and then playing them back. Lee and I sat up until the early hours of the morning wobbling joysticks around to get this working ;-)
I can't remember what happened to Hyperion 1, I'm sure if you still have contact with Lee Cawley he'll still have something left of it.
I remembered that the music was by none other than Matt Grey. It was, IMHO, one of his finest tunes. It got out to so many 64 demos it was un-true. The demo writers had no idea of the trouble caused. I always suspected Mastertronic were responsible for the leak of the demo, but at that time we were all a bit.....well slack on such things."
"Hmmmm, now that is interesting. Every company we sent the demo to refused the game, so I wonder how it got out? As far as I remember, each version was encoded with the relevant software house’s name so I should be able to find out who leaked it. I’m not overly bothered.
We actually sent out versions to Hewson, Firebird, possibly gremlin and maybe one other. I still have all the letters here I think. It officially remains an unreleased game, albeit a completed one. We had master versions all built up for duplication but they never got used."