Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Why Flying Buffalo

Had the opportunity to exchange emails with Rick Loomis of Flying Buffalo and asked him why that name for his gaming company:

In 1970, while serving in the US Army, I started running play by mail 
games of Nuclear Destruction for a fee for customers. I got an army 
buddy to write a computer program to run the game, and processed the 
turns at a Control Data computer center across the street from Fort 
Shafter. (In Honolulu). I had intended to start a stamp and coin shop 
when I got out of the army, but "Rick's Coins" is so boring, so I 
made up a silly name. I was going to have a "Buffalo Nickel" and a 
"Flying Eagle  (penny? dime? I forget) on the logo. When the folks at 
the computer center asked who they should send bills to, I started to 
tell them to send the bills to "Spec4 Loomis, USASTRATCOM, 
Communications Center South (etc)", but my programmer, Steve 
MacGregor, who knew about my coin shop plans said "No, tell them to 
send the bills to Flying Buffalo, care of Spec4 Loomis, 
USASTRATCOM...etc" On a whim, I did just that. And discovered that 
when I went to pick up my jobs at the computer center, when I asked 
for the "Flying Buffalo Job", they never said "I'll have to go see if 
it is ready" -- they always said "Oh, yes, it's right here". A 
memorable name is very handy! At any rate, by the time I got out of 
the Army in 1971, I had over 200 customers playing my games, so I 
dropped the stamp and coin shop idea and stayed full time on games ever since.