These days Scottish video game programmer and designer Chris Sawyer flies under the radar. The inventor of RollerCoaster Tycoon seems happy to let Atari build new games in the much-loved strategy series while he gets on with other, pressing matters, such as riding real-life roller coasters and helping out at his local school. And yet, despite this radio silence, Sawyer's games are as fondly remembered now, over 20 years later, than they ever were.
Ageing games company Atari is seeking to redefine itself as an "interactive entertainment production company" with a new focus on online games, gambling and wearable devices.
It's been years since I played a Rollercoaster Tycoon game, but thinking back to it brings forth foggy memories of a challenging yet enormously enjoyable juggling act. It was a series that asked you to balance the value of an amusement park in both business and entertainment terms.
You had to build rides that were scary enough to raise pulses without triggering gag reflexes, and adjust the prices of goods to ensure punters didn't feel ripped off while still turning a profit. The layout was important, too - it was unwise to place food stalls near the exit of a corkscrewing coaster, but charging people a fortune to use the toilet afterwards was a guaranteed money-spinner. You couldn't just slap down attractions haphazardly - you needed to build practical routes to enable people to queue efficiently and get around without any trouble. Building the theme park of your dreams, in other words, required a good deal of thought.
There's no need to think about any of the decisions you make in Rollercoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile - not least because most of them have already been made for you. You're not a tycoon but a lapdog, following instructions that are usually accompanied by large pulsing arrows telling you exactly where to tap. You'll name your park, add a few attractions and facilities, build a basic wooden rollercoaster, and then the game grips your hand a little less tightly and you're left with three nominal goals - build this facility, plant some trees, lay some pathways, and so on.
The PC version of Rollercoaster Tycoon 4 will be released in "holiday 2014", publisher Atari has announced.
Rollercoaster Tycoon 4 publisher Atari has promised that the game's PC version will be very different to the microtransaction-funded incarnation headed to mobiles.
UPDATE: Is there hope for the new RollerCoaster Tycoon? Atari has confirmed a PC "experience" is in development and due out this year.
"RollerCoaster Tycoon is back and it's coming to mobile!" the company tweeted, perhaps in response to the negative reaction to the announcement of the mobile game.
"Rest assured, there is a PC experience in production now for release this year!"