Police Quest: In Pursuit of the Death Angel (aka Police Quest I) is an adventure game produced by Jim Walls for Sierra On-Line, and originally released in 1987 built on their AGI engine. It was remade in 1992 using 256 color VGA graphics and the SCI engine.
It is the first game in the Police Quest series and spawned three direct sequels as well as the spin-off series SWAT.
Setting and charactersEdit
Police Quest: In Pursuit of the Death Angel casts the player as Sonny Bonds, a police officer assigned to traffic duty in the fictional town of Lytton, California. His supervising officer, Sergeant Dooley, reveals in the morning briefing that the local teenagers are getting out of hand and are using cocaine. “We need to find the scumbag that’s supplying them,” he says. As well there is a report of a stolen 1983 black Cadillac which Bonds and his fellow officers are ordered to keep a lookout for.
During his regular patrol, Bonds is sent to investigate a car crash. Upon investigation of the accident, Bonds discovers that the deceased driver of the vehicle, a drug dealer named Lonny West, has been shot in the head. After Sergent Dooley arrives on the scene and takes control of the investigation, Bonds returns to his regular patrol. After a coffee break with fellow officer Steve, Bonds goes back on duty and gives a speeding ticket to a beautiful woman named Helen Hots (In the remake she is replaced with Tawnee V. Helmut), handles some bikers who are troubling a local eating establishment, and arrests a drunk driver. The shift finishes and Bonds visits "The Blue Room", a local hangout for off-duty police officers, where he talks with his friend Jack Cobb about Jack's daughter's drug problem.
After returning to duty, Bonds locates the stolen Cadillac and pulls it over. With the help of Officer Jack Cobb, Bonds arrests the driver, Jason Taselli, and identifies the car as the stolen vehicle with a new light blue paint job. Further investigations reveal drugs which help to link Taselli with the murder of Lonny West. Partly due to his work on the case, Bonds is promoted to Acting Detective with the Narcotics division. Further investigations reveal the name of the drug lord to be Jessie Bains, "The Death Angel", and that he is also involved in an illegal gambling operation at the Hotel Delphoria.
Going undercover, Bonds infiltrates the gambling ring at the Hotel Delphoria with the help of prostitute Marie Wilkans, and is taken to a card game with Jessie Bains. Gaining Bains trust, Bonds is taken to Bains hotel room where Bonds calls in his backup who gun Bains down.
The game is the most realistic of those developed by Sierra by the late eighties (when compared to Leisure Suit Larry, King's Quest, or Space Quest), and featured many puzzles where proper police procedure is required to succeed. It was released for the IBM PC, Apple II, Amiga, Atari ST and Apple IIGS. A SCI 1.1 enhanced version in 256 color VGA was released in 1992.
Police Quest I was the first sierra game to ship completely un-copyprotected, allowing players to install on a hard disk or make up backup copies.
Police Quest I was reported to have been used as a training tool for Police officers:
“ Police Quest has proven to be a practical, effective training tool officers enjoy using. It safely demonstrates to rookies the consequences of failing to observe proper police procedures and can serve as a valuable refresher course for experienced officers. ” — Rich DeBaun, Interaction Magazine Spring 1992
- There are shortcuts for typing commands: o for "open", c for "close", d for "door". These shortcuts are unique for this game only.
- According to dates given in the game, it takes place mainly in 1983 ("Marvin Hoffman" is arrested at 9/7/83). Strangly 1985 is mentioned twice once as the production year of a stolen motorcycle (1985 Yamamama 750cc) and as part of the Jason Taselli warrant number (#219293-1985), and a gun is said to have been stolen 12/4/86.
- According to dates given in Police Quest 2 events in the game may take place between 1983-1987. However many of the dates mentioned in the game in the file cabinet and police computer are mixed up.
- The manual for Police Quest 3 moved many of the events (at least the hunt and capture of Bains) of Police Quest to around 1987. Bonds is promoted to narcotics and arrests Bains in 1987.
- The remake of PQ1 takes place in 1992 or later, based on dates given in the game.
- This game is known as "Police Quest I" in some of the marketing.
- Although this game uses the AGI engine (an animated graphical adventure game engine), the driving sequences add real time arcade-like action to the game.
- ↑ Sierra Newsletter, Vol. 1 No. 2., pg 3