Stargunner, released late in 1996, was Apogee's final game. Apogee had officially started in 1987 with the release of a shareware game, Kingdom of Kroz, solely developed by Apogee founder, Scott Miller. The Apogee label rang loudly for nearly ten years in the shareware arena, with games like Commander Keen, Duke Nukem, Raptor, Wolfenstein 3-D (the father of the FPS genre), and Rise of the Triad. Apogee pioneered the shareware method of selling games, and it was this method that allowed Apogee (as well as Id and Epic) to rise from nothing to become a successful, entirely independent game studios.
But as the industry matured, it became apparent by 1994 that 3D was the future, and so a new company name was created, 3D Realms, and this is the name that soon replaced all signs of Apogee.
Stargunner represented the first completed attempt at a game for all of the developers involved. While the commercial success of the game was mild, it certainly launched the careers of the 3 programmers who all moved on to find success in the games industry. Stargunner's artist also found success in his chosen field, though outside of games.
The game itself was written in C++, but with heavy usage of assembly for the video and sound routines. It was one of only a few games that could run at 60 frames per second on the current "486" hardware of the day. Most of the art was developed on the Amiga using Deluxe Paint. In fact, the game was originally supposed to be an Amiga game with a PC version supposed to follow, but the PC version soon overtook and led development, and sadly the Amiga version was eventually dropped.
Stargunner was released as freeware on June 22, 2005 and is available for download from 3D Realms.