Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Problems running old games

Whether due to dissatisfaction with modern games or wishing to recapture one's youth, retro-gaming is becoming increasingly popular. However, you may have problems running games designed for DOS or earlier versions of Windows. One possible solution is to make Windows run the program as if it were an earlier version of the operating system.

In order to do this, you need to make sure that you have a short-cut on the Desktop for the game. Most games will give you this option. If not, you can find the short-cut for the game on the Start menu; right-click on it; select 'Copy'; right-click on some space on your Desktop; and, click 'Paste.'

Right-click on the short-cut on the Desktop; select 'Properties'; and, go to the 'Computability' tab. To make Windows emulate an earlier version, tick 'Run this program in compatability mode for:' and select an appropriate version on Windows. The CD-ROM for the game should mention which version of Windows it was designed for.

If it is an old MS-DOS game, select Windows 95. You may also have to tick the three boxes in the 'Display settings' section. Try different combinations to see what works.

If your game still won't run, you may have to install a patch. Check the game producers website to see if they still support their product. Also, some popular games will have a fan community and an on-line presence. Try searching on the name of the game and the word 'fan'.

Have fun playing those classic games.


Anonymous said...

There is very nice app called DOSBox which is kinda virtual machine for old dos games. Works very well for those I tried (like Metal Mutant), even with sound.

And of course there is always option of using full-featured virtual machine and copy of dos. :)

The Success said...

thanks to drop EC to me
btw, would you like to exchange link with me?

The Success

Anonymous said...

rarst: i agree, dosbox is much more suited to run old games... particularly since for the last ten years, game developers have had directx audio pushed down their throats, so in terms of audio cards no one cares about sound blaster emulation any more.

dosbox translates the soundblaster calls into directx calls, so a soundblaster compatible game will work with any directx capable soundcard, even if it has no support for soundblaster.

i use doxbox all the time, it's great. :D

Anonymous said...

lots of classic game cant be played at vista and thats why i'm not use it. Classic game more exciting for me .

Borkiman said...

rarst & fwaggle: thanks for the heads-up about dosbox. I will give it a try and may write a post about it in future... now where is my Magic Carpet disc...

success: I only link to computer themed sites here, although I may add a general blogroll in the future

andrean: indeed, some classic games are still very playable and better than much of what is released today, but let's not forget that there were lots of rubbish games back then too

Unknown said...

Very informative and worthy post. Thanks for the sharing such a precious updates with us.

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