The Ark Royal Story - from one of their catalogs

Ark Royal Games was a Coco game producing company during the 1980's that almost exclusively produced war games (both history based, and future based). They also did some adventure games as well, but were best known for their war games. The following text is taken from one of their software catalogs, and is basically a history of how Phil Keller started up the company:

The Ark Royal Story:
In the fall of 1981 I was playing Wooden Ships & Iron Men (Avalon Hill) with a friend of mine and I dropped the die. I bent to pick it up, knocked over the combat results table chart, which in turn knocked playing pieces off the map. In my knee-jerk recovery, I sent the box and zillions of charts, tables, graphs and cardboard squares flying.

There has to be a better way, I thought, and there was. The following spring I invested in a Color Computer and went looking for wargame software. There wasn't any. Forced to write my own. But first I had to learn to program. Thank heavens I bought from Radio Shack! Their manuals are excellent.

Something called SQUAD was written. Terrible, but it was a start. From there it was the 16K Across The Rubicon. Friends told me it should be marketed. Okay, think of a company name. Raiders of the Lost Ark was popular around that time and I wanted something with 'Ark' in it. Being a wargamer for years and a WWII buff since I was eight, I remembered the British carrier that launched the Swordfish torpedo planes that in turn damaged the Bismark: the Ark Royal. It became Ark Royal Games so that I would constantly be reminded, no matter how successful things became, that the object of the whole endeavor was wargaming; producing the goodest and funnest games to play.

We've succeeded. I know that because of the letters we receive. They're great. Like those from a very young man who loves our games and from his very loving father who believes that Ark Royal games have helped make his son the fine student he is.

We're proud of that. And we're proud that we pack so much into every game. Because we're proud, we try to show it in our programs, our service. We believe our service excellent, and the main reason for that is you. We can ship right away because of your honesty. In almost four years of dealing with you; processing thousands of checks, fewer than ten have been bad--and then most of those were made good.

Through our games we've gotten to know quite a lot of you, and we like that. Wargamers are the best!

All from a roll of the dice.

--Phil Keller

NOTE:I am slowly gathering Ark Royal games to put on the website. To get you started, one of the games is Kamikaze.

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