Treasure Quest

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Treasure Quest
Developer(s) Sirius Entertainment Inc.
Publisher(s) Sirius Publishing Inc.
status Status Missing
Release date April 10, 1996
Genre Computer puzzle game
Age rating(s)
Platform(s) Windows 95
Arcade system Arcade System Missing
Credits | Soundtrack | Codes | Walkthrough

Treasure Quest was a puzzle game created by Soggy in Seattle Productions and sold to Sirius Entertainment. It was released April 10, 1996.

In the CD-ROM scavenger hunt game Treasure Quest, the player moves from room to room in the mansion of Professor Jonathon William Faulkner, who has bequeathed $1 million to any student who can solve the puzzles he has laid out. To move from one room to the next, players must find a famous quote from visual clues, words and anagrams, and then derive an ultimate solution to the game.

Throughout the game, the player is guided by the professor's long-dead love, played by Terry Farrell, who was brought in to the project by Star Trek/Star Wars author Daryl F. Mallett, who worked at the company at the time.

Much of the game's popularity stemmed from the developer's openness about, and players' willingness to share clues and room quotes, so long as the final solution was kept confidential.

The soundtrack featured 11 songs by Jody Marie Gnant (daughter of Sirius Publishing's CEO, Richard A. Gnant[1][2]) some of which supposedly contained clues.

The professor's lost love[edit | edit source]

A beautiful woman and a brilliant cryptographer, her work with the government and various unnamed agencies led her to a life of solitude. She risked her life to be with the professor, and ultimately lost it. She was found dead on the side of the road, poisoned by a mysterious serum.

Room quotes[edit | edit source]

  • Den: Will you, won't you, will you, won't you, will you join the dance?
  • Bedroom: Beauty is truth, truth Beauty—that is all ye Know on Earth and all ye need to know.
  • Library: Knowledge comes but wisdom lingers.
  • Attic: I have striven not to laugh at human actions, not to weep at them, nor to hate them, but to understand them.
  • Dining Room: A man gazing on the stars is proverbially at the mercy of the puddles in the road.
  • Kitchen: I demand that my books be judged with utmost severity, by knowledgeable people who know the rules of grammar and logic, and who will seek beneath the footsteps of my commas, the lice of my thought in the head of my style.
  • Cellar: If you built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.
  • Game Room: One more such victory and we are lost.
  • Garden: Sic Transit Gloria Mundi.
  • Living Room: Language is the mark, the sign, not of his fall, but of his original innocence. Through the Word we may regain the lost kingdom and recover powers we possessed in the far-distant past.

Million dollar prize[edit | edit source]

In a unique marketing ploy, Sirius Publishing, Inc. offered a $1,000,000 prize to the first eligible player who could solve the mystery of Treasure Quest and submit an explanation of the solution to the complete satisfaction of a panel of judges. The contest would end on 12/31/99 if no winner was determined.

Ultimate solution[edit | edit source]

The ultimate solution, as given by the developer Cerise Casper (now Cerise Vablais) to Sirius Publishing, was "The Tree of Life", referring to both wisdom and the love of the professor's lost fiancee Rose. It references both the Kabbalah and Proverbs 3:18, "She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her." The rooms and corridors in the game were connected together like those in the Kabbalah's diagram.

Controversy[edit | edit source]

The "outcome" of this game is steeped in controversy.

Paul Wigowsky of Woodburn, Oregon submitted the "Tree of Life" solution with the 10 room quotes on May 31, 1996. Wigowsky was a schoolteacher and a student of esoteric teachings. He immediately recognized that the design of the 10-room mansion with the 22 connections between the rooms was the same identical design that he had seen in books on the Hebrew Kabbalah with the 10 Sephira and 22 paths (also 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet). It was afterwards admitted by the producer of the game that this quester was indeed the first to submit the correct solution; however, the player was disqualified on the technicality that he did not put the required registration number in the upper right hand corner of the submission (as required by the rules of the game). [3]

Shortly afterwards, Sirius Publishing released a statement that the $1 million prize was won. They posted the solution to the game on their website. A person by the name of P. Dreizen of San Francisco, California, won the game and the cash prize in May 1998. It was speculated that the person "P. Dreizen" is actually an anagram of "End Prize." Many of the people that collaborated online wonder why the person never showed up to discussions or participated in the chat rooms. They believed a game of such complexity couldn't be solved alone.[4]

Others questioned the validity of the final solution, stating that the amount of typos, missing words and misquotes in the game made it impossible to beat. In July of 1999, the case was settled for an undisclosed amount.[citation needed]

Development[edit | edit source]

Development was started by Soggy in Seattle then, after Sirius Publishing bought their interests, was completed by David Whipple and Christian Huygen of Motion Pixels, a sister company to Sirius Publishing.

Computer Requirements[edit | edit source]

Minimum: 486 DX, 33 MHz, 8 MB RAM, VESA or PCI local bus SVGA graphics card, 2X CD-ROM drive, mouse, SoundBlaster-compatible sound card, 10 MB hard disk space, Microsoft Windows 3.1 or 95.

External links[edit | edit source]

Bibliography[edit | edit source]

  • Dembo, Arinn. "Treasure Quest," in Computer Gaming World 146 (Sept 1996): 164-167.
  • Giovetti, Al. Treasure Quest at
  • House, Michael L. Treasure Quest at
  • Melanson, Mike. 20. Treasure Quest at Multimedia Exploration Journal (16 Feb 2003).
  • Miller, Chuck. Treasure Quest at
  • Panther, C. "Treasure Quest," in Computer Gaming World 144 (Jul 1996): .
  • Phil, Thé. "Treasure Quest," in Computer Games Strategy Plus 70 (Sept 1996): 108.
  • Poole, Stephen. Treasure Quest at (14 Jun 1996).
  • Sauer, John. "Treasure Quest," in PC Games (Jul 1996): 56.
  • Slugansky, Randy. "The 10 Biggest Turkeys of All Time," at
  • Verity, John W. "A $1 Million Chase by CD-ROM," in Business Week (11 Mar 1996).
  • Vérroneau, Michael. "Treasure Quest" at Big Blue & Cousins: The Newsletter of the Greater Victoria PC Users' Association - Web Edition 13:7 (Aug 1996).
  • Young, Rosemary. Treasure Quest at (Jul 1996).
  • Treasure Quest at

Awards[edit | edit source]

1996 Invision Gold Award for Best Strategy/Puzzle Game Title, given by New Media Magazine[5]

Tracking[edit | edit source]

UPC: 756521776725