ALTERNATE REALITY: THE CITY and its sequel, ALTERNATE REALITY: THE DUNGEON were originally intended by game designer Philip Price to be combined all into one game. The split was done to provide the Datasoft programmers working on the 8-bit conversions enough time to convert the first game in time for a Christmas release.
 Four sequels were planned for ALTERNATE REALITY: THE CITY. Ultimately only one sequel was ever produced because Datasoft failed to pay royalties to Philip Price for designing & coding the original Atari 8-bit release.
Game designer, Philip Price, in his own words explains:
'The sequels were planned from the start. I wanted an interwoven series of games that allowed multiple ways of solving the problems and that had a plethora of plots and sub-plots. I planned to allow players to directly go back and forth between the sequels, with prior games being patchable and having versions. Sadly, in the conversions, Datasoft didn't follow my technique for laying out data on the disk, and therefore the conversions would not be able to bootstrap to other games in the series. But the Atari 800 version always was ready for it. I probably should have tried to control the conversion process more.
As it stands, [there is] no [way to "win" the game series]. My concept from the start was that "The City" and every sequel were to be patchable by later games in the series. One subtle patch to "The City," done in either "Wilderness," "Revelation," or "Destiny," would change the characteristics of Acrinimiril's gate. It would then become a gateway into an alternate universe; the one Acrinimiril came from. You could enter it with the proper knowledge. It would seem like you could always do this, but in technical terms it would only exist after the patch. Thus, you could win with only "The City," but only after the patch.
The series itself had many possible endings. I believe in free will and wanted people to chose their destinies, not have me cram it down their throats. A person in the final game in the series would have to make some heavy choices. Should I annihilate the planet we are orbiting that is populated with aliens who had kidnapped me? Should I just return to Earth? Should I take the alien megaship I am in with me to Earth? Should I destroy it? These were all final choices in the end, each with probabilities of certain consequences occurring from those choices.'