November 30, 2004 7:45 AM   Subscribe

abandonia.com... home to abandoned DOS games, for discussion and download.
posted by crunchland (40 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
see also, Home of the Underdogs.
posted by crunchland at 7:49 AM on November 30, 2004

Crunchland, you glorious bastard, my life will not be even less productive.

My new computer can't play Sam and Max. *sheds tear*
posted by Arch Stanton at 7:51 AM on November 30, 2004

All the more reason to resurrect that old 120MHz Pentium I machine in the crawlspace... but what's are the legal implications of sites like these? Are they likely to be ceace-and-desist-ed into oblivion as soon as they make it onto corporate radar screens?
posted by onshi at 7:54 AM on November 30, 2004

My favorite was Temple of Apshai, which I played on the TRS Model 1 (which was lated ported to DOS).
posted by jim-of-oz at 8:01 AM on November 30, 2004

Arch Stanton, if you're looking for a Windows Compatible version of Sam and Max, Lucasarts released it on a preview disk for their latest game Armed and Dangerous. (I picked it up at Best Buy for $5 a couple months ago.) I don't know if it's still available, but maybe you can find it on Ebay or something. (It's totally worth it. It runs like a dream on my machine.

Also, crunchland, this site rules.
posted by emptybowl at 8:01 AM on November 30, 2004

Absolutely required software:
ScummVM for playing old LucasArts adventures (like Sam and Max) on any computer, including PDAs. Note that LucasArts games are *not* abandoned -- they're pretty tough on cracking down on abandonware sites with their games.
DosBox for playing old DOS games on any fast computer.
posted by zsazsa at 8:05 AM on November 30, 2004

Oh man! Syndicate?? Ascendancy???? X-COM?????? TENTACLE???????

Time to break out some 311, choose my soundcard's IRQ, turn on Cartoon Network and relive the three least productive years of my life.
posted by dougunderscorenelso at 8:06 AM on November 30, 2004

Ahhh! Classic Lemmings! Oh, such a fantastic game. The first computer game my little brother ever played, and hooked him for life. Although somehow it morphed into "Fwam-ing-goes" from his little speech impeded mouth. The only thing to compare in terms of "hours of life wasted" is the Myst series.

Thanks crunchland, this is just awesome.
posted by nelleish at 8:07 AM on November 30, 2004

apparently, some of the games are only available for purchase. Day of the Tenticle, for example.
posted by crunchland at 8:08 AM on November 30, 2004

posted by nthdegx at 8:12 AM on November 30, 2004

Lost Treasure Fr - has some games the other two sites don't have. French language site (and many of the games are in French). Deal with it.
The best way I've found of running DOS games is to run them though the extraordinarily good VDMSound.
posted by thatwhichfalls at 8:14 AM on November 30, 2004

Oh Jesus, this means I have to play all the way through XCom and Terror From The Deep again! Will Microprose never let me sleep?

posted by NinjaPirate at 8:21 AM on November 30, 2004

zsazsa - DOSBox doesn't support DOS extenders, afaik, so most of the late DOS games (roughly anything from DOOM onwards) won't work well, or often at all.
Trust me, VDMSound is the way to go.
posted by thatwhichfalls at 8:24 AM on November 30, 2004

And why has Doom II only got an editor's rating of 3/5?
There's nothing so satisfying as watching your first Cacodemon crumple wetly to the floor.
posted by NinjaPirate at 8:24 AM on November 30, 2004

Wow. This is like a trip down the memory lane called college. Had I spent half the time on school - nay, a quarter - I would have been a PhD a years ago.
posted by Yellowbeard at 8:26 AM on November 30, 2004

Anybody know how to get the files to work with a download resumer? I've tried before, and I think they only allow you to use a download manager if you're a VIP member...
posted by Jongo at 8:26 AM on November 30, 2004

Wow. Thanks to Nelleish I will be getting even less work done now...
posted by Yellowbeard at 8:28 AM on November 30, 2004

Oh man. Thank you, mr. chland!
posted by Kafkaesque at 8:39 AM on November 30, 2004

Ahh, I failed most of my first year exams at uni because of dune II.
Now I can relive this by being late to work everyday by going to bed at 4 am. hurrah!
posted by qwerty155 at 8:39 AM on November 30, 2004

"And why has Doom II only got an editor's rating of 3/5?"

Good question -- Doom II is excellent. So much there I'd like to play... if anyone was disappointed not to see Frontier Elite II, it is available elsewhere.
posted by nthdegx at 8:42 AM on November 30, 2004


I love old Sierra games. I played these for countless hours, and playing them a bit now brings back so many memories.
posted by xmutex at 9:19 AM on November 30, 2004

Ultima VI? I have only three words to say about that.

posted by euphorb at 9:25 AM on November 30, 2004

Ah, Master of Magic. Hell, I stil keep it handy in a zipfile and fire it up every other year or so.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 9:34 AM on November 30, 2004

Master of Magic is still one of my all time favourite games. I honestly think that if it were given a graphics make-over (without messing with the underlying game mechanics at all) it could be a success.
posted by thatwhichfalls at 9:38 AM on November 30, 2004

Yeah, bigger map, nicer graphics, same game otherwise. It'd be very playable. I'd play it more often than I do except for the memory and sound problems trying to get it to run under XP. I've used vdm and dosbox and others, but it's always a bit of a hassle. I could never get into any of the Might and Magic games. Of course, I was (like everyone else at the time) a compulsive Civ player. I really like that MoM is like Civ, but with magic and then also the heroes. It's very fun to really buff up some kick-ass heroes.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 10:12 AM on November 30, 2004

Good call on Masters of Magic. Some other games that you never heard of (probably) that are incredibly worth playing and will burn up a good workweek:

Fantasy General, a great wargame from SSI set in a D&D type world, with a fun plot and units that gain in experience and power through a campaign. Will eat a good 5-10 hours before it gets too hard. (Ha! A challenge!)

Magic: The Gathering. You've played the card game,, now download "Duels of the Plainwalkers" - also surprisingly fun and deep, 10-20 hours of gameplay

Conflict. A Middle East simulator from 1990, yet so little has changed. You play Israel - never mind the politics, a good 1-2 hour simulator of a type rarely made today.

Below the Root. So its from 1984, still a great epic RPG/Adventure/Puzzle with a cool plot based on a children's book series. Nifty
posted by blahblahblah at 11:53 AM on November 30, 2004

it isn't listed, but i always thought f29 retaliator was a fantastic game. especially considering its size (<400k). i didn't have a manual for it though, so i never once managed to land the thing — controlled crashes were as close as i could get.
posted by howling fantods at 12:12 PM on November 30, 2004

Loved some of these older DOS games. Are ther any good straightforward (simple) tutorials on running them on a newer machine.
posted by page404 at 12:30 PM on November 30, 2004

anyone remember tunnels of armageddon?
posted by yonation at 12:32 PM on November 30, 2004

zsazsa - DOSBox doesn't support DOS extenders, afaik

I don't think this is true anymore - it at least has partial support. I managed to get Fallout, which uses dos4gw, to run fine. Unfortunately, since I have a mac, the rule of thumb is that anything modern enough to use an extender will be too slow.
posted by advil at 1:23 PM on November 30, 2004

onshi - at least some of the underdogs stuff is legal (at least, that's the claim). The claim (at least on Empire Deluxe) was that some other publisher had purchased the rights to the original, threw in a bunch of spyware and recouped their investment that way. Updating your copy of AdAware beforehand is a good idea.
posted by swell at 1:30 PM on November 30, 2004

How to run a DOS game, by blahblahblah:

Download DOS Box

Download your game. Unzip it to a directory, say c:\dos

Run DOSBox.
Type: mount c: c:\dos
Type dir (gets you a directory if you need it)
Type the name of the .exe or .bat file that starts the game (look in the readme file if you don't know which it is)
If the game runs too slow, hit cntrl-F12, too fast, hit cntrl-F11

That should work for most games.
posted by blahblahblah at 1:46 PM on November 30, 2004

On XP machines, most seem to run fine in the compatibility mode or whatever bill calls it. Most of the rest (well for me all) seem to run fine if you boot to a DOS prompt (I know it really isn't a true DOS environment) and then run the game. Have you tried booting off of a DOS floppy and running the game off of a ram disk or CD?
posted by caddis at 9:50 PM on November 30, 2004

I actually run an emulator just to play Master of Orion 2. Sad, eh?

Speaking of old gaming, the new Pirates! game is well worth a look. Nice graphics and interface (barring the damned dancing), but still as fun as the old ones (barring the damned dancing).
posted by Samizdata at 10:20 PM on November 30, 2004

Nice site! Yay for various Ultima games. Also, I third the suggestion of using VDMSound. It's very nifty.
posted by jzed at 3:06 AM on December 1, 2004

For those who loved Master of Magic, the nearest thing there is to a sequel is Age of Wonders.
posted by aeschenkarnos at 4:33 AM on December 1, 2004

I just got through playing some MoM using DOSBox 0.63. Worked fine. I used the "surface" renderer and gave it about 20000 cycles. I have a P4 2.4Ghz. The sound was slightly choppy, but no pauses.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:34 AM on December 1, 2004

"I really like that MoM is like Civ...", EB

As far as I recall MoM was written around the engine for Colonization, hence the similarities. I know what you mean about HoMaM - they always seemed a little simple-minded next to MoM for some reason.
aeschenkarnos - thanks for the tip.
posted by thatwhichfalls at 4:44 AM on December 1, 2004

I can't believe nobody here has mentioned Rise Of The Triad yet.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 5:24 AM on December 1, 2004

Yummy. Knew about the underdogs but not the other site.
posted by bargle at 6:45 PM on December 1, 2004

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