The British video game industry has just learned of the disappearance of one of its pioneers. At the origin of the creation of the developer and publisher Ocean Software in 1983 with Jon Woods, David Ward died at the age of 75.
It was Benjamin Ward, one of David Ward’s six sons, announced the death of his father this Monday on Twitter. Born in 1947, the entrepreneur David Ward co -founded Ocean Software in 1983. First known as Spectrum Games, Manchester’s company will become an important name of the video game scene in Europe and remains considered a pioneer of The professionalization of the video game industry. After having its ranges on microcomputers, Ocean Software installs its pretty chrome logo on the boxes of the 8 and especially 16-bit consoles.
In addition to specializing in the adaptations of Japanese arcade games on living room machines ( Terra Cresta , Chase HQ , Double Dragon , Toki , Ninja Gaiden ) and to produce its own games (including Mr. Nutz by Ocean France), Ocean Software quickly becomes synonymous with a profusion of games based on film licenses, with a result as unequal as the Introduction of the retro dash that Ocean Software devoted to the label in 2019. Robocop , Batman , RAMBO , TOP GUN , HOOK , Platoon , Total recall , Terminator , The Adams family , Jurassic Park or Waterworld : The cinema of the years 1985-1995 went to the Giant Ocean reel Software. Loss of speed at the end of the 16-bit generation, the publisher continued on its way until 1996, the year when French infrograms bought the company for the sum of 100 million pounds sterling. In 1998, the Mission Impossible ** of the Nintendo 64 was the last title endowed with the Ocean Software label to emerge.
In 2004, David Ward and Jon Woods were inducted at the ELSPA temple, a former name of the British software publishers’ association, for their contribution to the video game industry. “Numberux are those who consider Ocean Software as a pioneer who has helped to transform the British Video Games sector into a real multinational business. Together, Ward and Woods have invented a large part of the game industry and have been At the origin of several of its important stages, in particular the use of brands and franchises from traditional media and the processes of intellectual property protection “, commented Roger Bennett, then Director General of ELSPA.
In addition to our retro dash show dedicated to Ocean Software, the MO5.com association has devoted a very nice portrait to the publisher.