42 Facts About Richard Garriott


Richard Allen Garriott de Cayeux is an American video game developer, entrepreneur and private astronaut.


On October 12,2008, Richard Garriott flew aboard the Soyuz TMA-13 mission to the International Space Station as a space tourist, returning 12 days later aboard Soyuz TMA-12.


Richard Garriott became the second space traveler, and first from the United States, to have a parent who was a space traveler.


The creator of the Ultima game series, Richard Garriott was involved in all games in the series, and directly supervised all eleven main installments, starting with 1979's Akalabeth: World of Doom and concluding with 1999's Ultima IX: Ascension; the series is considered influential, notably helping with establishing the computer role-playing game genre.


Richard Garriott founded the video game development company Portalarium in 2009.


Richard Garriott was CEO of Portalarium and creative director of Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues until 2018 when he shed the title, later relinquishing all Shroud of the Avatar assets to Catnip Games in 2019.


Richard Garriott is currently co-leading the game development studio DeMeta.


Richard Allen Garriott was born in Cambridge, England on 4 July 1961, to Helen Mary Garriott and Owen Garriott, one of NASA's first scientist-astronauts, who flew on Skylab 3 and Space Shuttle mission STS-9.


Richard Garriott's parents had been high school sweethearts growing up in Enid, Oklahoma.


Richard Garriott was raised in Nassau Bay, Texas from the age of about two months.


Richard Garriott used the course to create fantasy computer games on the school's teletype machine.


Richard Garriott later estimated that he wrote 28 computer fantasy games during high school.


In summer 1979, Richard Garriott worked at a ComputerLand store where he first encountered Apple computers.


Richard Garriott spent $200 printing copies of a manual and cover sheet that his mother had drawn, then put copies of the game in Ziploc bags, a common way to sell software at the time.


The game sold over 30,000 copies, and Richard Garriott received five dollars for each copy sold.


Later that year, Richard Garriott entered the University of Texas at Austin.


Richard Garriott joined the school's fencing team, and later, the Society for Creative Anachronism.


Richard Garriott lived at home with his parents while attending university, and from there created Ultima I with his friend Ken Arnold.


Richard Garriott continued to develop the Ultima series of computer games in the early 1980s, eventually leaving UT to work on them full time.


Richard Garriott sold Origin Systems to Electronic Arts in September 1992 for $30 million.


Richard Garriott resigned from the company and formed Destination Games in April 2000 with his brother and Starr Long.


On November 11,2008, in an open letter on the Tabula Rasa website, Richard Garriott announced his plans to leave NCsoft to pursue new interests sparked by his spaceflight experiences.


Later Richard Garriott claimed that the letter was forged as a means of forcing him out of his position and that he had had no intention of leaving.


Richard Garriott reviewed and signed this announcement, but did not sign a resignation letter that had been drafted for him by NCSoft.


Richard Garriott founded the company Portalarium in 2009, which developed Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues, a spiritual successor to the Ultima series.


Richard Garriott remarked that had they been able to secure the intellectual property rights to Ultima from EA, the game could have become Ultima Online 2.


Richard Garriott then returned to creating games; once he had accumulated sufficient funds, he put down another non-refundable deposit.


On September 28,2007, Space Adventures announced that Richard Garriott would fly to the International Space Station in October 2008 as a self-funded space tourist at a reported cost of $30 million.


On October 12,2008, after a year of training in Russia, Richard Garriott became the second second-generation space traveler, the first offspring of an American astronaut to go into space, and the second person to wear the British Union flag in space.


The free Metro newspaper in London provided him with a special edition containing details of British primary school students' space experiment concepts that Richard Garriott took to the ISS.


Richard Garriott communicated with students and other Amateur Radio operators and transmitted photographs using the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station slow-scan television system, and placed a geocache while aboard the ISS.


Richard Garriott worked with the Windows on Earth project, which provides an interactive, virtual view of Earth as seen from the ISS.


Richard Garriott used Windows on Earth software to assist in the selection of locations on Earth to photograph, and the public were able to use the same online tool to track the ISS and see the view Richard Garriott was experiencing.


Richard Garriott covertly smuggled a portion of the ashes of Star Trek actor James Doohan on a laminated card, which he placed under the floor cladding of the ISS's Columbus module.


In January 2021, Richard Garriott was elected president of the Explorers Club.


In February 2021, Richard Garriott traveled to the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the deepest oceanic trench on the planet.


Richard Garriott bought the Luna 21 lander and the Lunokhod 2 rover from the Lavochkin Association for $68,500 in December 1993 at a Sotheby's auction in New York.


Richard Garriott's haunted houses cost tens of thousands of dollars to create each year and took many months and a sizable team to construct, yet were free to the public.


Richard Garriott promotes private space flight and served as vice-chairman of the board of directors for Space Adventures.


Richard Garriott is a trustee of the X PRIZE Foundation.


Richard Garriott participated in the first zero gravity wedding on June 20,2009, with his wife Laetitia Richard Garriott de Cayeux.


Richard Garriott was the inspiration for the character James Halliday in Ernest Cline's Ready Player One.