I recently was given a document in MS Works format that I wanted to convert to something more modern and useful. On my system I had neither Works nor Word installed. This ended up requiring two steps in Windows.
The first was to install the free MS Word Viewer 2003. While its web page claims it can open Works documents, it cannot by default. You must then install the Works 6.0 Converter for Works and Word Users. Once this was done, the Word Viewer was able to open my .wps file. I simply did select all and pasted it into a blank OpenOffice document. I saved as .doc from Windows XP, and all was well.
Another option may be the new libwps, although I did not try it as the above option worked for me.