1001 Video GamesBlade Runner appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.
Blade Runner legendHere's an interesting, if unprovable, bit of legend behind Blade Runner the movie and the game. The original movie was noted for having many numerous corporate sponsors seen throughout the film. (e.g. Coca-Cola, Pan-Am, Atari, etc...) After the films release many of these corporations suffered huge financial losses, some like Pan-Am filed for bankruptcy and have since ceased to exist. This has been known as the Blade Runner Curse. The curse, it seems, did not end there. The game was produced by Westwood Studios in 1997, less than a year later they would be acquired by Electronic Arts. By March of 2003, Westwood Studios ceased to exist when Electronic Arts shut down its operations after several of its titles such as Command & Conquer: Renegade failed to meet sales expectations.
Blade Runner similaritiesBlade Runner made is based upon the Blade Runner movie from 1982. The movie was based on Philip K. Dick's novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. The novel story happens somewhere around '90s, since that was distant future for the author, but when the movie was about to be made, they had to increase the time-line and post it on the beginning of the 21st century, since '90s wasn't much of an unknown future for the time movie was made, back in 1982.
Most of actors that played in Blade Runner movie gave their voice talents to some characters in Westwood's Blade Runner, first 3D real-time adventure game, and some of the characters were made as same as movie characters look. Not to mention how many locations in a game looks exactly like the ones from a movie.
Globally speaking, the plot is almost exactly the same as the movie. Sure, the names are different, there are a few more locations, but that's about it.
CompressionUncompressed Blade Runner with all the polygons, perfectly clear animations and everything at its highest level was over 400 gigabytes which took Westwood's mastership to compress all this on only four compact discs (there is also a DVD version of Blade Runner), so basically, other then main characters are in much less polygons and detailed, and even on McCoy pixelation can be noticed on some locations (lift, for example).
Endings and quality assuranceThere are actually 12 different endings to this game.
Some of the endings are somewhat random, at certain locations during the game, an event will take place. The outcome of the events, as well as which events happen, will help determine which ending you receive.
This game was a testing nightmare, random events and 12 endings meant a tiresome test cycle. The Westwood Studios Quality Assurance Department played through the game over 2500 times.
InstallationThe maximum installation takes 1,4 GB, which was enormous for the time.
MusicVangelis, the composer of the movie soundtrack, did not compose anything for the game. Even the short parts of his pieces in the game are not played by Vangelis himself.
PicturesLook in the folders on the CD There should be some graphics with some weird names. Click on them. You have a few (amusing) pictures of the Westwood staff.
- In the police station, look at the score board : there's Deckard (Deckard is the main character of the movie).
- As you can see on the screenshots, there is a Command & Conquer: Red Alert game in the arcade center.
- In the movie. Deckard visits the fish lady in Animoid row to find out if the scale is from a fish or from something else.
When you pay a visit to Izo in his pawnshop at Hawker's circle (Animoid row), he'll use the flash of his camera to blind you and escape. When you run the picture he has taken of you through an Esper, you can see Deckard in the background when he is talking to the fish lady.
- The game opens with a crime scene at a pet shop owned by a man called Runciter (the shop in question is named after him). This is a nod from the developers to Phillip K. Dick, author of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (1968) (the book from where Blade Runner is based), since Runciter is also the name of one of the protagonists in another novel written by PKD called Ubik. Coincidentally, there was a game based on Ubik developed by Cryo Interactive Entertainment.
- Throughout Blade Runner there are numerous references to the source material, such as the movie, and Philip K. Dick's novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, however the game designers threw in one subtle reference to another movie not related to either of these. At the beginning of Chapter 4, send Roy McCoy up the tunnel with the train tracks. On the right side of the tunnel are the letters CHUD. A obvious reference to the 1984 horror movie about Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers.
- The poetry Clovis leaves on McCoy's answering machine at the end of the first day is the first four lines of A Poison Tree by William Blake.
- For a good laugh: Click on McCoy or hit ESC to view the KIA and type POGO.
- Start Blade Runner with the command line option SITCOM. (in command line: blade.exe SITCOM) After some sentences spoken in dialogs you will hear applause or laughter.
- Start blade.exe with the parameter SHORTY. (from commandline: blade.exe SHORTY). All characters are shorter and speak with a pitched voice.
SpeedrunThe game is beatable in 41 minutes if you skip through all the dialogue and know exactly where to go, what to do, who to talk to, and what to say.
TrilobyteOriginally Trilobyte had first thought of aquiring the rights to make a game out of Blade Runner. But they ultimately abandoned the idea for the "lack of creative control" dealing with licensed material would cause.
Voice ActorsNearly all of the characters who appear both in the movie and the game are voiced by their original actors. These include James Hong as Dr. Chew, Brion James as Leon, Sean Young as Rachael, Joe Turkel as Eldon Tyrell and William Sanderson as J.F. Sebastian. Edward James Olmos did not reprise his role as Gaff.
Information also contributed by Goteki45, Michael Palomino, Itay Shahar, Juan Pablo Bouquet, MAT, ROFLBLAH, Shogun, Timo Takalo Yeba and Zovni