|The original: Zak
McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders
Zak McKracken and the
Alien Rockstars (ZMAR)
An old promotional image, circa 2002, no longer on the site.
Does anyone have a larger version of this? I think it used to be available as wallpaper.
If you have a copy I'd be very grateful! My email address is email@example.com
A short history of the original Zak 2 Project
| Back in 1996, when the original Zak game
was barely eight years old, some German fans got
impatient waiting for a sequel. Maniac Mansion had a
sequel, Monkey Island had a sequel, but Zak had no sequel
in sight! So they decided to make one. The project was
led by Nemo Pohle.
The 'Zak 2 project' was very ambitious, which meant it would not be finished quickly. Its great strength - its quality- became its great weakness. The project relied on unpaid volunteers, especially students. As the years went by, people kept leaving the project (presumably as they got 'real' jobs). In one interview (in 2003) a team member said the whole team had changed twice, just since 2000! Even Pohle left 'for personal reasons.' Each time I check, someone else has left the team and someone else has joined.
At first the team called themseves "Masterton Software" and "Invincible Creative" and the web site zak2.de was active from 1999. A demo was released in April 2000: click here for technical details and a complete list of who did what.
In the first half of 2001, the Zak 2 website completely disappeared. In October 2001 the original project team leader, Titus Miloi, left the project. Most fans thought the project was dead, so they started a new one: Zak McKracken 'Between Time and Space',
The original project reappeared in April 2002, renamed 'Zak McKracken and the Alien Rockstars.'
For most of 2003 and 2004, very little happened on the original fan project's web site. Then in the middle of 2004, the site was replaced by an 'update in progress' graphic. It appears that Clem, the team leader, left the team, and took a lot of material with him.
But Zak fans never give up! In November 2004, the forum reappeared. In January 2005, the entire game was restarted from point zero. In January 2006 it was announced that the game would be released in stages, with the first chapter "hopefully by the end of this year." By April 2006, 33 percent of the first chapter was playable. Also in April 2006, the team member who ran their old web site disappeared, so the site was moved to a new address, and work continues. The old URL ended in .de and the new URL ends in .net.
In early 2007 it was announced that the game would be delayed by a year.
In May 2008, after the release of BTAS, it was announced that ZMAR would close down. Let's hope this isn't permanent...
This is NOT the new game, and is here for historical interest only, by kind permission of Titus Miloi, the old team leader
Grisha Karanikolov sent some art and music rescued from 2002. Thanks, Grisha! That's exactly what this web site is for: to archive old Zak material that's so easily lost.
Click here for a folder full of music
"This was planned to be the soundtrack for the Zak McKracken 2 project way back around the year 2002, if I remember correctly. As some of the titles show, the authors planned in-game locations like Scotland, Hawaii, Brazil and so on. ... the tracks were available for download on the project's official webpage"
The squirrel and glasses are giant sized (right
click and 'view image' or similar)
The main title,
home page splash,
and box art.
Most of the graphics you see here are from the OLD game (pre-2005) and will not appear in the final version. That is why I call this the Zak McKracken ARCHIVE - it is an archive of old materials that would otherwise be lost forever. For the latest screenshots, visit the ZMAR home page at www.zak2project.net These screenshots are not really screen shots, but mockups - they are created to show what the game would look like when it was finished. But the screenshots on the ZMAR website are genuine, real shots from the actual working game.
note the differences between the two National Inquisitor offices
An actual shot from the game:
An early mock-up:
|According to the project team (as
far as I can tell, using Babelfish to translate from the
German forum), the engine is almost complete. In other
words, it can do pretty much everything an adventure game
needs, but it is still being polished. It's called the
"Sushi Engine", and runs under Windows and i386-Linux
(MacOS X is planned). The graphics are based on OpenGL.
The story is created entirely with a text editor, using a script language called "Sushi Script," a language based on Lua and Python, but designed for adventures. They don't plan to release the engine on its own, but could do if enough people are interested.