Cop Who Made Video Games Dies At 83

In the mid-1990s Daryl Gates was like the John Madden of law enforcement. His name appeared above PC games made by Sierra. Better known as the Los Angeles police chief during the Rodney King crisis, Gates died Friday at 83.

Police Quest: Open Season of 1993 was the fourth game of that series and the first to feature Gates' name on the box. It was also the first set in Los Angeles, instead of the fictional city of Lytton, and for it Gates replaced a former California Highway Patrol officer as the series' designer. Gates' name also ran above Police Quest: SWAT of 1993. Both games were considered disappointments.

Under Gates, Police Quest dealt less with law enforcement procedure and more with storyline, and also more mature themes than their predecessors.

In the mainstream, Gates was known as the chief of police during the King beatings, which led to harsh criticism and calls for his resignation. He was depicted as out of touch during the April 1992 rioting that followed a not guilty verdict for the officers involved in the assault. Three months later he resigned, moving into other ventures including game consultation and design.

Gates is survived by a son, two daughters and a brother.


    I hate to sound naive but I had no idea about his rodney king involvement. that being said though, pq4 was a creepy as hell game and a distinct part of my adventure gaming growing up.

    The Sierra Quest games were my first foray into the whole PC gaming genre back in... I believe 88 or so? My first was Kings Quest, followed by Police Quest. I remember each time a consecutive Police Quest came out we were excited as hell to play the latest adventure of Sonny Bonds in Lytton and his struggle to take down Jesse Baines 'The Death Angel'. When Part 4 came out it was a shock, but it wasn't a bad game, a bit different but not bad at all. Swat however was terrible...

    Daryl Gates definitely gave an air of credibility to the games, RiP Mr Gates, thanks for your influence on the gaming industry.

    RIP Daryl F Gates. PQ: Open Season was the game that introduced me to being rough on journalists. I felt a pang of nostalgia during that special scene in my Mass Effect 2 renegade playthrough.

    And yet you still can't buy the Police Quest (or Space Quest) bundle on Steam in Australia. Sigh.

    Police Quest, holy crap that brings back memories.

    I remember back in the day and my old man had all the Police quest, Kings quest, Space Quest and the Leisure Suit Larrys games stored on about 50 5.5" floppys.

    Sorry, but PQ will always be Jim Walls' series to me...

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