The Journeyman Project was released in 1993 by Presto Studios. It's a very simple time travel adventure, created back in the day when multimedia was expected to be the next killer app for desktop computers and the very early CD-ROM games typically cost about $100.
Your character is an agent for the Temporal Security Agency. He lives on a flying city called Caldoria. Time travel was officially outlawed a while ago, to prevent any historical mishaps from occurring. However, the TSA was created and equipped with all sorts of time travel gadgets. They monitor the flow of history in order to detect problems. As far as they know, they are the only ones equipped properly for time travels.
The way time travel is dealt with in this game is odd. When someone goes back in time and severely changes the flow of history, that person creates a Temporal Distortion Wave. This wave slowly propagates through time, and thus one can "jump over" it with the proper vehicle. Failing to jump over the wave can result in an instantaneous uncreation or merely a complete displacement of your entire life.
Every morning, an agent from TSA takes a digest of all current news releases, technological reports, and the like, and records them onto two discs. One is left at the TSA headquarters, and the other is brought back to the Cretaceous period. In case of a Temporal Distortion Wave, the agent who jumps over the wave goes back to retrieve the Cretaceous disc. The Wave hits the other copy of the disc, and the comparison between the two reveals the changes made to history.
In this case, someone has attempted to sabotage the first contact between humans and extra-terrestrials by sending robots to do these three actions:
- Destroying a Martian outpost in the 21st century and blaming it on aliens. Destroying an alien vessel in the area as well.
- Launching a bunch of missiles from cities across the globe at Gorbistan to prove that we are DANGEROUS.
- Assassinating a delegate at one of the conferences in Australia on accepting the invitation to the galaxy-wide Symbiotry of Peaceful Beings.
The gameplay of this title is very simplistic. You see the world through your BioTech implant, an electronic thing inside your brain that works with a special pair of sunglasses to turn the normal everyday world into the Journeyman Project universe. The implant contains game controls and other useful bits, including a message panel. For movement, you can choose forward one square, backward one square, or a 90-degree turn in either direction. All graphics are pre-rendered; these WERE the days of single-speed CD-ROM drives and 68030's, ya know!
The Journeyman Project, when it was first released for Macintosh, required a single speed CD-ROM and a big bad FIVE megabytes of RAM, though you were supposed to have EIGHT for best performance*. There was a Turbo version, with enhanced graphics to take advantage of newer, faster CD-ROM drives. Both versions were eventually released for PC. The CD-ROM had several audio tracks containing music for the game, but the actual audio files used while playing came from somewhere else. The game engine itself is actually a Macromedia Director projector with a LOT of customized Lingo code.
There were also two sequels, The Journeyman Project 2: Buried in Time (for Macintosh and PC), and The Journeyman Project 3: The Legacy of Time (for Macintosh and PlayStation 2). There was also a "Director's Cut" version of the original called Pegasus Prime.
*The odd thing about Mac OS pre-X is that the user determines the maximum amount of memory available to an application. This requires entering the Minimum and Preferred partition sizes into the Get Info box in the Finder, which would alter the program's SIZE resources. Obviously, this can't be done on a read-only device such as a CD-ROM, so the Macintosh version came with three copies of the executable, all with different memory settings! Other games, such as The CHAOS Continuum, got around this by requiiring the user to copy the executable to hard disk.