Today AGD Interactive finally announced the release of their third project, the remake of Quest for Glory II: Trial by Fire. My favorite installment from the better of Sierra's two fantasy adventure series, the original Trial by Fire was a wonderful game sorely in need of a VGA update. (Sierra did its own VGA remake of the original EGA Quest for Glory I: So You Want to Be a Hero, and Quest for Glory III: The Wages of War was created during the VGA era, leaving Quest for Glory II, with its 16-color palette and much-maligned text parser, rather out in the cold.) I've been waiting for this remake ever since I first fired up the original after finishing Quest for Glory I in VGA, and longed to experience Shapeir in that same shiny, point-and-click, 256-color goodness. And it's finally been done!
Formerly known as Tierra Entertainment, AGD (which stands for "Anonymous Game Developers") Interactive are the people who brought you the superlative remakes of King's Quest I: Quest for the Crown in 2001 and King's Quest II: Romancing the Stones in 2002. Their games are faithful recreations of the Sierra classics using the AGS engine, sometimes incorporating small improvements but overall respecting and honoring the integrity of the original games.
The Trial by Fire project started back in 2000, and pushed back planned releases in both 2004 and 2005, with the development cycle constantly lengthening in order to maximize the quality of the game. Judging by their past efforts, the wait should be well worth it.
On a related note, Himalaya Studios is the commercial venture of the people behind the non-profit fan enterprise AGDI, and so far they've released one great title, the original Western-themed adventure game Al Emmo and the Lost Dutchman's Mine (for a limited time, you can get a free exclusive Trial by Fire poster with the purchase of the collector's edition of the game). If you enjoy AGDI's work, their original offering is well worth checking out -- and since AGDI is not allowed to accept donations for their Sierra game remakes, it's a great way to show your support for the hard work of talented indie developers.
For more Sierra adventure remake goodness, don't miss the also excellent VGA version of King's Quest III: To Heir is Human from Infamous Adventures, who are currently at work on a Space Quest II remake.
Now if you'll excuse me, I have a new game to play.