AUSTIN, Texas — Entrepreneur, adventurer, astronaut and legendary gaming pioneer Richard Garriott is a huge force at SXSW this year.  

In an official capacity, he’s promoting his latest book, “Explore/Create" and gaming venture, “Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues.”

“Much more than a memoir, this fascinating work encourages us to embark on our own adventures and challenges readers with interactive games and activities. The legendary entrepreneur and online gaming pioneer— creator of the ‘Ultima’ series and the forthcoming ‘Shroud of Avatar’ — and private space travel advocate examines the importance of adventure and curiosity in his life in this inspiring memoir, complete with interactive tie-ins, puzzles, tricks, and secret codes,” SXSW says of Garriott’s new book.  

He signed copies as part of the conference on Tuesday afternoon.

Garriott and his Portalarium dev team will also be revealing his new game, “Shroud of the Avatar: Forsaken Virtues" at a private preview event at the Bullock History Museum Wednesday evening* with a special performance by Shooter Jennings. 

Mr. Garriott will also speak at the Gaming Expo Thursday, March 15, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. about “crowdfunded game development, what new surprises fans and players can expect with the much-anticipated launch, and where the journey goes from here for the spiritual successor to the renowned Ultima series.”

About Richard Garriott

British-born American computer game developer who became the sixth space tourist and the first second-generation American to go into space.

Garriott grew up in Houston the son of NASA astronaut Owen Garriott, who first flew into space on July 28, 1973, as part of the Skylab 3 mission.

As a teen, he began working on a fantasy role-playing game called “Akalabeth” (1979) for the Apple II. In the 1980s, while attending the University of Texas at Austin, he expanded on the dungeon-crawling model of “Akalabeth” to create “Ultima 1.”

The Ultimaseries that followed established him as a major player in the computer-gaming industry, and in 1983 Garriott cofounded Origin Systems, Inc. Garriott’s in-game avatar, Lord British, ruled the kingdom of Britannia, and players engaged in quests to defeat a series of evils.

His Relationship with Stephen Hawking

Garriott, one of the first investors into zero-gravity adventure flight company Zero G, took theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking up in one of its aircraft in 2007. 

Hawking, age 76, died Tuesday, March 13. He is know for his unwaivering work in astrophysics and for his triumph over amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS. 

*The event is private, but Spectrum News will be there to provide a first look to viewers. Refresh this story for updates.