The Space Bar

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The Space Bar
The Space Bar Box Art
Developer(s) Boffo Games
Publisher(s) Rocket Science Games, SegaSoft
Designer(s) Steve Meretzky (director, interactive screenplay)
Patricia Pizer (interactive screenplay)
Tom Bok (interactive screenplay)
Ron Cobb (concept art)
Platform(s) Windows, Mac
Release date(s) June 30, 1997
Genre(s) Adventure game
Mode(s) Single player

The Space Bar is an adventure game co-developed by Boffo Games and published by Rocket Science Games and SegaSoft in 1997. The game featured a 3-D environment which allowed the player to rotate (as opposed to Rocket Science's earlier production Obsidian in which the camera was usually fixed), and a humorous cast of aliens in the framework of a mystery. The player fills the role of a detective, interacting with characters and objects via a first-person interface. The name itself is a pun, as the game takes place in a bar in outer space--literally a "space bar" rather than the space bar found on a computer's keyboard.

Created at the end of the mainstream lifespan of the adventure game genre, it received positive reviews but enjoyed lackluster sales and proved to be the last game produced by either Rocket Science or Boffo Games. Famous more for being the death knell of two once-promising game developers than for its innovative gameplay and outstanding graphics for the time, it has garnered little in the way of a following over the years. This is due mostly to the difficulty of its gameplay and several annoying bugs that crept into the final version of the game.

When the game was released, The Sci Fi Channel held a giveaway on its website. By finding and clicking on certain banners scattered throughout the site, the visitor was able to enter the drawing. One of the prizes was a copy of the newly released game.

Originally, Rocket Science Games was set to publish The Space Bar, but when their previous games sold poorly, Rocket Science looked to outside publishers for the needed cash to keep developing, SegaSoft then became Rocket Science's sole publisher. After publishing two titles for Rocket Science, they released the Space Bar, but by the time the game was finished, SegaSoft was shutting Rocket Science to cut their losses after the financial failure of the previous two titles and gave the game only a limited marketing push.

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