The Adventure Workshop
The Adventure Workshop is one of the almost forgotten British "homegrown" text adventure game companies of the 1990s. Run by Philip M. Reynolds of Oldham, Lancashire it started off producing conversions for Amstrad CPC & PCWs, but quickly expanded to include original games and cover other 8-bit machines. With a final catalogue of over 200 titles, the conversions of many of which were licensed from the Spectrum-focused behemoth Zenobi Software, it's a company that deserves to be better recorded. The Adventure Workshop versions of many of the adventure games, in the advertisements shared below, are "missing in action" from the Amstrad, Sinclair and C64 online archives. It would be great if more of them could be found, documented and preserved.
In their own words: "The Adventure Workshop was set up in 1992 to provide a service to adventure authors who wished to have their games converted to other computer platforms, mainly converting games from the Spectrum 8-bit to the Amstrad CPC 8-bit computers. It started out as a hobby but rapidly grew into being the biggest Amstrad Adventure Software House in the UK. In January 1993 we decided to branch out into the PC market by converting some of the best 8 bit Adventures."
The Adventure Workshop also republished games that had previously been available through Recreation Re-Creation Software, The Guild and Compass Software. According to an article in The Adventure & Strategy Club, in late 1994 The Adventure Workshop's catalogue of games included over 120 Amstrad titles, 90 ZX Spectrum adventures and 13 Commodore 64 games.
The advertising collected below showcases some of the many games in The Adventure Workshop collection.
Amstrad CPC / PCW / CP/M adventure games - Spectrum adventure games
Commodore 64 adventure games - PC (DOS) adventure games (native & emulated)
If you own any Adventure Workshop titles then please check they're preserved online and consider donating digital copies to one of the archive sites if they're not.
(Update 14/11/18: Thanks to the sterling work of Kukulcan at CPC-Power, details of all the Amstrad adventures listed in the advertising above have been added to his database.)
Update 17/5/2019 - John Wilson has discovered about fifty of The Adventure Workshop's Amstrad titles in his Zenobi archives! Many of which had been previously 'missing in action'. He's shared the files here.
The Adventure Workshop games archived at:
World of Spectrum / Spectrum Computing
CPCRulez / CPCPower / GameBase64
(More may exist in those databases, catalogued under different publishers etc.)
The excellent MOCAGH site has a collection of The Adventure Workshop Spectrum cassette tapes & inlays