Creator of Raster Blaster (the first home computer pinball simulator) and Pinball Construction Set (which was based on Raster Blaster). He was one of my many idols, a programmer who had his game released in the flat box style of Electronic Arts. The flat box style made the games look like record albums, making me think that game programmers were something like rock stars. I know a bit better know, but there's still that whole nostalgic mystique to the who thing.

As of this writing, he is still a programmer, about 47 or so (which made him about my age (27), or a bit younger, when he made his mark on the world). He was in the middle of his PhD program when he dropped out to start making games for a living. He started with a Pong like game, which he traded away to Apple to get himself a printer. He later made a "game construction kit", then Raster Blaster, then PCS. He eventually made a version of PCS for the Sega, then moved on to 3DO, releasing both a game called Blade Force and some sports/olympic game. Now he mainly works on engines and game programming tools.

Back in the early '80s, he worked as an engineer for Apple with Woz and the guys, he not only had a game to his name, but his signature was on the cover, and Electronic Arts had him touring the country doing a "signing tour" of his LP-Record-packaged game. Yes, to a young kid he was a rock star! And to my now "adult" mind, I still am a bit envious of his position in life. And it really is a shame that things have died down to the point where the programmer's name is no longer signed on the front of the box, like they were in his days. You don't hear many names from game companies nowadays. Sure, there's Lord British, John Carmack, Sid Meier, and a handful of others... But, tell me how many musician's names you know, or actors? So, those who have their name on the front of the box will remain my idol, and Bill Budge was one of my first.

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