David Braben

David Braben

David Braben has been called “one of the most influential computer game programmers of all time”, based on his early game development with the Elite series in the 1980s and 1990s. Next Generation listed him in their “75 Most Important People in the Games Industry of 1995”, chiefly due to the original Elite.

Elite was developed in conjunction with programmer Ian Bell while both were undergraduate students at Cambridge University. Elite was first released in September 1984 and is known as the first game to have 3D hidden line removal. In 1987, Braben published Zarch for the Acorn Archimedes, ported in 1989 as Virus for the Atari ST, Commodore Amiga and PC.

After Zarch, Braben went on to develop the sequel to Elite, Frontier, published in 1993 and founded Frontier Developments, a games development company whose first project was a version of Frontier for the Amiga CD32. Braben is still the CEO and majority shareholder of the company, whose projects since 2000 have included Dog’s Life, Kinectimals, RollerCoaster Tycoon 3, LostWinds, Planet Coaster, Elite: Dangerous, Jurassic World Evolution, Kinect Disneyland Adventures, Zoo Tycoon, Coaster Crazy and games based on the Wallace & Gromit franchise.

I suppose I had a fascination with microcomputers even before I owned one myself. I used to read magazine listings and things like that and thought ‘Wow’. It just filled me with wonder and the simplicity of it all. I got an Acorn Atom when I was about 16 or 17 and it was fantastic. It had everything I needed and that was the beauty

VISIT —> The Frontier website