Michael Cranford has been a game programmer and game designer before he pursued other interests. He started his career in Berkeley, California, and programmed the Apple version of the classic Donkey Kong
arcade game, the Commodore 64 version of
, as well as
a kind of predecessor of his own game The Bard’s Tale.
In the game industry he is probably best-known for two titles he designed for Interplay Productions. The first title,
Tales of the Unknown, Volume I: The Bard's Tale
became a great success and sold around 300.000 copies. He also designed the sequel The Bard's Tale II: The Destiny Knight
, but he didn’t want to get involved in the completion of the trilogy, because his interests had changed. After these games he created
, and his last contribution to the game industry was co-designing Dark Seed
Meanwhile, Cranford pursued studies in philosophy and theology. He earned a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of California, a M.A. in Religion from the University of Southern California, a Master of Divinity from Biola University, and a Ph.D. in Social Ethics from the University of Southern California, where his research focused on business ethics and technology. He was Professor of Biblical studies at Biola University for eight years, and published in journals such as the Journal of Business Ethics and Technology in Society, and he contributed a chapter to Beauchamp & Bowie's Ethical Theory and Business.
In 1995 he founded Ninth Degree where he is still CTO . The company, located in Dana Point, Ca, is specialized in web development, corporate branding and marketing solutions. In 2009 he joined MOXXOR LLC as Chief Technology Officer. Moxxor offers an Omega-3 supplement.
Cranford also runs a website called Sundoulos, which is aimed at providing tools to Christians and researchers.
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- Dark Seed (1992), Cyberdreams, Inc.
- Centauri Alliance (1990), Brøderbund Software, Inc.
- The Bard's Tale II: The Destiny Knight (1988), Electronic Arts, Inc.
- Borrowed Time (1985), Activision, Inc.
- Tales of the Unknown: Volume I - The Bard's Tale (1985), Electronic Arts, Inc.
- Donkey Kong (1984), Atarisoft
- Super Zaxxon (1984), SEGA Enterprises, Inc.
- Maze Master (1983), Human Engineered Software
- Story Machine (1983), Human Engineered Software