Trade Realms History


Trade Realms Developer
Staff member
In the early 1990's, before the internet was a thing really, there were BBSs (Bulletin Board System). They were basically like forums today and a lot more. They also had games you could play. One of those games that I used to play and love was called Ultimate Universe (UU), and was what I consider a more advanced version of Trade Wars, which was the first and most popular of these style of games. With the internet becoming a thing, by around 1994, all things BBS were mostly dead.

I loved Ultimate Universe and played it a lot on my own BBS. I used to send in bug reports and was even mentioned in the game by the UU author due to the amount of bugs/information I provided in order to help the game be as good as it could be.

Many years later, I contacted the author of UU (Garth Bigelow) to see about purchasing the source code to see what I could do with it. Unfortunately I was a year or so late, the rights/code had already been sold to someone else. So I contacted the new owner, sent him all of my UU files that I had saved over the years (many of them were lost to everyone until I sent those). They were posted on a website and there was hope the game would be reborn.

Unfortunately that never happened.

I contacted the original author of UU (Garth) to see what was happening with the game. It turns out that the person that purchased the rights/code, never completed payment and the rights/code reverted back to Garth.

Sadly, Garth had some serious health issues and would not be able to revive UU as he'd like either. During this time, Garth gave me the rights to UU as I've always loved the game so much. By this time, the source code to UU was lost, Garth didn't have a copy of it anymore.

So, over the years I've contemplated attempting to revive UU myself and just never felt I had a good enough grasp on what was needed to bring it into a multi-player internet game. More dust.

Now however, I feel that while I'm still learning, I have enough skills in order to bring the game play of UU back to life. I decided on a name change, mostly because at the moment the game has a ways to go to live up to the UU name, but also because I intend to put my own spin on things.

So essentially, Trade Realms is the spiritual successor to Ultimate Universe. I hope upon completion Garth and the rest of the folks involved with UU back in the day can see Trade Realms for what it is, a passion project with the intent to showcase some of the best UU had to offer and then some.
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