GoldBox is a Propriety Game Engine developed by SSI (Strategic Simulation Inc.) in 1988. This engine is written in C/C++ but its initial version was written in Assembly and PASCAL. It developed games for the platforms of Apple II, Apple Macintosh, Amiga, Commodore 64, Atari ST, DOS, NES, NEC PC-9800, and Sega Genesis.

GoldBox was actually a series of video games developed by SSI. These games were developed in the years 1988 to 1992. The games were among the best CRPGs (Computer Role-Playing games) of that time and some are played even today. This series of game was called Gold Box due to the golden packaging in which the games were packed.

TSR, a game Publisher Company produced a series of popular RPGs, Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (AD&D) series. In mid 1980s, TSR announced selling AD&D to other RPG Companies. In 1987, SSI won the license of the game, after competing many big gaming companies of that time including Electronic Arts.

The first game by SSI were developed in 1988 called Pool of Radiance and its 3 sequels were release one by one on yearly basis. In 1990, Champions of Krynn was released based upon TSR’s Dragonlance. It introduced some innovation like difficulty level selection and character selection (e.g. Choice of God). In 1992, Spelljammer: Pirates of Realmspace was released that introduced real-time ship combat. Same year, Treasures of the Savage Frontier introduced innovative weather system and emotions between charters.

The engine was mainly designed for commodore 64, and so many games (11 games in 4 years) were written for it. As the commodore 64 became outdated, SSI released Forgotten Realms: Unlimited Adventure, in 1993 that allowed players to edit their own games.

The latest version (2.50) of Gold Box companion tool was released in July 2019 which enables to play “Gold Box” games even today.

The founder of the SSI (Joel Billings) donated all the collection including source code and game to “The Strong National Museum of Play’s International Center for the History of Electronic Games” museum. It covers the period from the company’s founding until its sale to Mindscape in 1994.

The Strong National Museum of Play

Other Features

  • Mouse support and improved graphics.
  • Top down view in combat.
  • The character from the finished game can be moved to the next game of the series.
  • More payer class levels and story lines.
  • Real time Multiplayer game play.
  • Option to back up to the latest saved game.
  • List of saved games with a description name of the map.
  • Tools for changing and editing text and data.
  • Ability to swap members in/out, editing the inventories.
  • Teleporting.
  • Journal entries.
  • Ability to add notes to the maps.
  • List of spell that can be used by a single click.

Game Developed in Gold Box

Some Useful Resources