Author Topic: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide  (Read 9368 times)

Jubal

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Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« on: March 20, 2014, 06:10:56 PM »
How to play a really old game with a not-really-that-old computer
A Jubal_Barca Guide

So, you saw a really neat review of a mid-80's computer game and want to have a go? Excellent! But wait. MS-DOS hasn't been a major operating system for about two decades. And your new 64-bit Windows 7 is not liking the look of those cranky old Sierra files...

Fear not - this guide is here to help in a few simple steps.

1. Get the game you want. Work out which file you need to run (there generally aren't many files so if you need to test different ones at a later stage, no problem.)

2. Get DOSBox. This program will, as its name implies, emulate an MS-DOS machine on your computer. http://www.dosbox.com/

3. Boot up DOSBox.

4. Okay, now, the technical bit. You need to mount the folder where you put your game (I'll imagine it's Space Quest 2 and I put it in a Documents folder called games/sq2).

To do this, use the following command:
Quote
mount W C:/Users/James/Documents/games
The green is the mount command. This is always the same.
The orange is a single letter name for your mounted drive. I usually use w but anything that isn't already a drive is a safe bet (so go towards the tail end of the alphabet).
The pink is the line to the folder you need. You have to start with the drive letter and input the whole thing - it's not generally case-sensitive as far as I can tell.

5. Okay, now we can play! Firstly type W: to go to your new drive.

6. If your directory wasn't exact, as in the example I gave (I mounted games and the folder is sq2 below that) you need to use
Quote
cd sq2
(cd is the Change Directory command)

7. Type the name of the file you want to run - you don't need the extension. In my case I just type "SIERRA" and ta-da, I'm on the Arcadia and ready to die in amusing ways at the hands of Sarien Space-Pirates.

Hopefully this was helpful and will let more people enjoy these classic adventure games.  :)
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Cuddly Khan

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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2014, 07:46:32 PM »
Might do some one Wing Commander, I've heard a lot about it lately but I've never played it.

EDIT: Might even try Sim Ant, I remember playing it from CD years ago and loved it so much but never finished it.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2014, 07:51:54 PM by The Khan »
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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2014, 08:09:41 PM »
Thanks a lot Jubal, now I've got even more things I need to be doing :)

SaidaiSloth

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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2014, 04:52:24 AM »
*bump*

Also check out GOG.com for both old and new games, pretty much all guaranteed to work and if they don't there's a 30 day refund guarantee.
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Jubal

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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #4 on: December 28, 2015, 12:07:48 PM »
Would this be better in the Game Tutorials section, do people think?
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Mars

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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2016, 07:11:12 PM »
How I wish there was more support for Hardware Acceleration in Virtual Machines so that 9x games would be supported.
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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2016, 12:50:40 PM »
If really old games are now 90s-00s then a really good program for getting them to work on even Win10 is DxWND. It basically gives you an easy to use GUI to change all kinds of settings outside the game and force things like fitting onto a 1080p monitor, bypassing dwm and all kinds of input issues these older games have.


Hope this helps someone :D
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Jubal

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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2016, 12:54:54 PM »
I have a commodore 64 emulator on my machine now as well as DOSbox :P
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Flamekebab

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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2016, 09:11:10 AM »
I have a commodore 64 emulator on my machine now as well as DOSbox :P
...and precisely how many C64 games are still worth bothering with?  ???

Jubal

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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #9 on: September 24, 2016, 09:59:20 AM »
I got it in order to play the 1989 Yes, Prime Minister computer game. Which was a very reasonable life choice!
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Pentagathus

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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2016, 11:52:34 AM »
There was a yes prime minister game? How?

Jubal

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Re: Playing really old games with new computers: a quick guide
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2016, 10:16:27 PM »
Yes, it's wonderfully awful. Basically it's a sort of odd choose your own adventure thing where you talk to various advisers and if you make the "right" (usually morally wrong) decision your poll rating goes up, and vice versa. The gameplay is somewhat horrendous, but the dialogue is all written by the original scriptwriters which is excellent :)
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