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I don't know for absoluetly shure if this topic might be a repeat of an existing one, only thing I found casually looking through was recomendations for abadonware sites. What I have in mind for this thread is other kind of preservation: not about where to get copies of files of certain games, but more about how to run old games on modern machine. Emulators, tools, fan patches, tweaks, and probably most cool: opensource fan ports of game engines. Currently, on a modern PC, you can run basically almost any games, but sometimes people don't know how. Maybe we can collect here at least some information and offer some help to make the process of playing old games more enjoyable.

 

Maybe I will start from some usefull basic links:

1. PC gaming wiki is a usefull place to check if there any fan patches, fixes or twaks avalible if you not shure they exist or can't find them casual way.

2. Very awesome list of OpenSource game clones, ie new engines for old games made by fans. Big list of projects - saldy, not full, sometimes not most updated but still, great source to look into.

3. A Wiki about emulators. Also may be not super-detailed in places, but follow updates and development of many emulators, have descriptions, recommendations and lniks to them,
4.The Patches Scrolls is nice resource to search for the patches for old DOS games. If you install them from floppies or from CDs they most often will be not the latest version.
5.VOGONS is forum community about running old games on newer systems. One of the first places in the internet where you can ask direct question about topic about running old games and fix their issues, especially if you not found solutions in other places

 

Some links on more specific things I using as example:

1.ScummVM. Biggest "compilation" of actual engine ports. Yes, this is not an emulator but set of new engines for old games. Started as re-implementation of SCUMM (a Lucas Arts' 2d adventures engine) it nowdays grow to support like hundreds of games, from text adventures to fully 3d hardware accelerated games. Focusing on Adventures and RPGs, it also may support action and puzzle games if they using same engine as some already re-implemented engine from some adventure game. A lot of games you buy on GoG or Steam have already built-in ScummVM parts to make them run, but it is better to use actual ScummVM to have easy usable list, auto-updates, all menus for configuration. It is because ScummVM why you now can easelly play 256-color FM Towns version of zak mckracken or Blade Runner. Support almost any platorm imaginable.

2.PCem. Awesome emulator of PC hardware. Much better that just virtual machine or something like that. Whad doeas it do? It emulating actual computer hardware - motherboard, CPU, videocard, everything! You building you PC, and congratulations! You have emulation of this actual computer, now you can install any OS you want and use it as full complete PC. Supports hundreds of hardware from original 1981 IBM PC to Pentium II CPUs and VooDoo3 video cards. With every new version there are more supported hardware. Has an active fork, 86box but I never tried it and more than happy with regular PCem.

3.DosBox Game Launcher - good GUI for DosBox. Instead of having multiple dosbox installations, editing dosbox text configuration files you may have this. Have multiple Dosbox versions inside, create profiles for game and all configurations for every game you want in user-friendly way. Well, you may build an actual DOS PC in PCem, but if you are using the DosBox, this is good way to go. Sometimes for specific configurations for games that may requre some specific tweaks it is good to visit DosBox compability pages for game you searching

4.dgVooDoo2 - Good tool, creates custom .dlls that allow games made for older APIs like Glide and old directX work with modern systems and allow some modern API features, like resolutions, antialiasing etc. Absoluetly needed if you want to play some late90s and some early 00s hardware accelerated games and want to play them on modern machine directly, not via PCem or something. However yes, it may cause problems in some games and not absoluetly universal solution, but good enough. Some games have custom solutions similar in the idea and there other alternative glide wrappers.

About GOG versions:

Yes, the GOG offering games that will run on a modern system by default, and usually you can divide them into these categories:
1.Games that run natively without problems - Nuff said, of course, search for fan patches is always a good idea for any game but otherwise nothing to say.

2.Games with some fan patches or installed engine replacement, like ScummVM - still better search for this engine replacement or google the patch. GOG updating it from time to time, but not often, so you may have not the most up-to-date version.

3.DOS Games - usually they have just DosBox attached. And usually not very well if at all configurated. Always check MIDI, render, aspect ratio correction, resolution, etc. option yourself if you don't want to end with a blurry, stretched picture, and fart sound instead of the music. Yea, visiting the compatibility page on the DOSBox site and PC game wiki for optimal settings also a good option.

4.Windows9x games - what I found is that most often there is some sort of outdated glide wrapper, like old nGlide versions. With this old DirectX and 3DFx Glide games use the most up to date dgVooDoo2, or new nGlide versions which you can configure yourself.

 

Here are some screenshots of things I metioned.

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3.png

Edited by ultrayoba (see edit history)

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Trailer for the first public release of new opensource engine port of Driver 2. It is still work in progress, but looks promesing. It is great that former console exclusives now have proper fan ports project so they can be played everywhere without emulators. ScummVM in recent versions added support of eye of the Beholder Sega CD version and PS1 game Blazing Dragons for example.
If you want to try Driver 2 port, read the instructions on their GitHub page linked in video description.
Another work-in-progress ports that you might be interested in:
The Force Engine

Is an open-source implementation of the Jedi engine, a sector game engine used by LucasArts in Star Wars Dark Forces 1 and Outlaws. Made by Lucius, the same guy who was the dev of XL engine. XL engine failed, in many ways because it is in one package tried to be Build, Xngine, Jedi engine re-implementations and was closed source, so when Lucius had no time to work on it, the project died. Now it is more open and more focused, so looking very promising.

OpenTESArena

Is an open-source re-implementation of the engine used by Bethesda Softworks for the Terminator Rampage and The Elder Scrolls I Arena. Made from scratch, with modern software render, on C++. The original engine is a bit janky, and CD versions of the game work badly with dos box and generally strange overall. So I guess, this new engine with more possibilities will spark interest in people to try the original first TES game. You can follow project progress on dev's twitter

 

Preview.jpg

Edited by ultrayoba (see edit history)

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Good idea. Personally, I would like to see a comprehensive guide for running troublesome games in Wine. I would try to make one myself but I lack the neccessary knowledge.

 

So I'll just throw in some useful links for fellow linux users.

 

1. If your game is on Steam, try running it through Proton (a bit special version of Wine built in Steam). It's very simple, just enable it in Steam settings under Steam Play.
You can check how well a game runs (and what tweaks you should do in game parameters) here https://www.protondb.com/
You can also get a modified Proton version here https://github.com/GloriousEggroll/proton-ge-custom
(On the right panel you will see "Releases" link, you will find downloads there. Also, scroll down for installation instructions.)

 

2. Otherwise you will need to either deal with Wine directly or, in my opinion the easier way, set up Lutris (it has login system but is usable without it too).
First check that you got your 32 bit binaries and drivers https://github.com/lutris/docs/blob/master/InstallingDrivers.md
then you need to install Wine dependencies https://github.com/lutris/docs/blob/master/WineDependencies.md and Wine itself (staging recomended over stable) https://wiki.winehq.org/Download
then you can install Lutris https://lutris.net/downloads/
You should probably get DirectX to Vulkan working too, I think Lutris already includes it, but in case it does not work, look here https://github.com/doitsujin/dxvk
You will find more useful information on wiki https://github.com/lutris/lutris/wiki and Lutris forums.
Finally, you can consider using gamemode (for Ubuntu - sudo add-apt-repository ppa:samoilov-lex/gamemode, then get update and install, you know the drill), not sure about desktop PC but it does make significant difference on my laptop. You can activate it with gamemoderun <insert-game-exe-command-here> and check that it works with gamemoded -s.

 

In Proton it just works or it doesn't, not much you can easily do apart from adding some launch parameters.

In Lutris, when a game won't run after installing it, you can right click the game in Lutris launcher and play with various options like changing windows version in wine configuration or installing libraries through wine tricks (e.g. dinput8 helps sometimes with mouse problems). It is best to try searching web for "winehq name of the game", winehq has compatibility/performance reports for various games which often say what needs to be done to make it run.

Edited by Plegyvap (see edit history)

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On 11/17/2020 at 11:50 PM, Plegyvap said:

Good idea. Personally, I would like to see a comprehensive guide for running troublesome games in Wine. I would try to make one myself but I lack the neccessary knowledge.

 

That would be awesome! Personally, I'm not a Linux user, but thinking about install it onto secondary PC.
I should also probably mention in the first post that majority of emulators and like 99% open-source engine ports have native Linux support.

But about games that (yet) don't have them, and on general thread topic, here my small guilde how to run Star Wars TIE Fighter (1998) as example of game with a lot of troubles
There, same as with X-wing is 3 versions of the game
-Original DOS Floppy. Separate addons, no voice acting, standart VGA.

-DOS Collector's CD version with a bit enhanced Intro, full voice, all addons, SVGA
-The Windows re-edition on the "Xwing vs TIE Fighter" engine with full texturemapping, hardware 3d acceleration, re-drawn menu art etc.

 

Of course, from the graphical point, the last version is the best one. GOG gives you all 3 versions of the game. However, it has a number of problems:

1.You can Play only with Joystick - well, you can play with the mouse in the DOS editions, but not anymore and it is understandable. It is a flight sim. But it works perfectly fine with a standard Xbox/xinput gamepad. I recommend checking what in-game was buttons already set automatically and rest configure with joy-to-key. This game has A LOT of the keyboard commands and mapping main ones on the pad making the game easier for a novice to get into.

2.Default GOG has some old wrapper or something, you can't even get into Hardware acceleration.Use at first the dgVooDoo2 (DirectX x86 DLLs, the game was made for DirectX5) and configure it, then, on top of that, drop this into game folder https://github.com/rdoeffinger/xwa_ddraw_d3d11/releases/tag/v1.5.13 - it is the custom Xwing/TIE Fighter Windows9x games wrapper, without it, you will not see a mouse cursor in menus.

3.Game missions have bugs in this port, but I believe all existing fan fixes already in the GOG version.

4.Music and Voice acting is horrible quality in this version of the game. TIE Fighter has one of the best unique Star Wars soundtracks written for it, in this port combat music replaced on generic star wars, voice acting quality is low. Use this http://www.savingcontent.com/xwing/TieFighterReconstructedGOGEdition.zip - a mod that re-constructs all this how it should be in highest available quality. The only downside is that in DOS, MIDI music was dynamic in combat with famous LucasArts' iMUSE system. Here it is not, sadly, it is impossible to fix that yet. Then, music in combat might not wrok. If so, download https://www.vogons.org/download/file.php?id=27848 and extract everything to the game folder (exept, if there is an TIE95.exe, don't extract it, we already have one from the music mod) Then rename winmm_nomciclose.dll to win32.dll. Then, go to HEX editor and do this in the TIE95.exe file - replace metion of winmm.dll and modify it for win32.dll
Also - keep 4x3 aspect ratio. game GUI of fighter cockpit is 2d, so there nothing can be done here. Or strech or stay in 4x3

 

Enjoy probably the best SW game ever made!

Notes on X-Wing 1998 version:

-About graphics, you may do the same trick as described above. Same as with in-combat music as described above.
-However, in addition to that X-W also have most of the music replaced. In combat for generic SW music, menu tracks on some just noise ambients instead of the music. There no fan mod for it like for TF. You can replace some of it yourself, however. This is soundcloud of an awesome person who did original TF re-arrangements that become part of the mentioned above TF sound mod, he also has XW soundtrack re-arranged the same way. In gog version, there are 2 folders. On MUSIC with .ogg music - there are track02 (in-flight music), track03 (victory in-flight music), track07 (defeat in-flight music). Other bits idk they may be leftovers from XVT. (there no defeat music in the dos version, but on SoundCloud, there is a mix with all combat music. You may edit out with audacity part with XW 1993 victory music out of the mix to separate file. Victory-defeat is only dynamic music that exists in these remasters.

-In the Xwing CD folder there are wav files with music playing from "CD". These are cutscenes, menus, and others.  This or bad MIDI recordings or just crappy ambients with engine noise. You may replace this also, they are named. However, there is a problem a lot of them are "combined". Like now for registration and for briefing there is same track REGBRIEF.wav, they not bothered since in this version it is a minute of noise anyway, so when replacing you need to choose what you want better "correct": Music in registration or music in briefings.

-New menus style are from the mac version is meh. They are "rusty" 3d pre-renders from the MAC version of the game, with inserted hand-drawn low res VGA character sprites poorly (combined with default 1998 ambient music it creates a completely different atmosphere from the original game). Some transition cutscenes when you fly from ship to ship, wing commander style landing and take off cutscenes, choosing pre-set wingman was cut. It is not a BIG deal but you can't do anything with it sadly.

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Edited by ultrayoba (see edit history)

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Some more tips for linux users:

- If you can see the taskbar displayed over game in fullscreen then try setting screen resolution the same as game uses.

- (might be outdated) If game freezes/stutters (especially when moving camera) it helped me to turn off CSMT in Wine configuration.

- When game crashes, skips or hangs on black screen after launch you might just be missing codec for the intro video. Which one depends on format in which game stores them.

- Setting different Windows versions in Wine can have significant impact, e.g. setting old Windows version will report your RAM as lower than it actually is, avoiding the not enough memory errors.

- Some games are originally released on console and then ported to PC. If you can't be bothered to tinker with it in Wine you can just get the console version and use emulator. Those are usually very easy to set up and Lutris supports many of these as well.

- Some games work better in 32 bit Wine. 16 bit games will run only in 32 bit (64 bit supports only 32).

- When everything else fails you can always try running the actual OS as a virtual machine. Microsoft allows you to download Windows XP Mode from which you can extract Windows XP virtual hard disk file (VirtualXPVHD) and use that in VirtualBox. https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=8002

 

That being said, a little deviation from the topic. Running the game is actually the third and arguably least important step of game preservation. I would say there are three steps:

  1. Knowing the game exists.
    Most important. We can't save it if we don't know about it. I would say https://www.mobygames.com/ is the right place for it, considering their reasonable rules and big database.
  2. Keeping a copy of the game.
    Also very important and unfortunately often outside the law. I don't know of any obvious to-go site for abandonware or even just freeware. There are many sites with overlapping collections. Easy to lose something when a site goes down.
  3.  Running the game in the right environment.
    Thats the topic of this thread. Honestly the least important part by far. Once 1 and 2 are accomplished we can take as much time as we want developing any emulation or even reverse engineering the game.
    Still, it is good to sometimes remember that we want to play those games as well.

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Another Star Wars game that might be tricky to run is "Star Wars Jedi Knight Dark Forces 2" and its standalone addon "Mysteries of the Sith". This is another example of "early" Hardware-accelerated games, came out in the middle of 1997. This is an awesome game that was ahead of its time in many ways, mixing detailed 3d level design, environmental storytelling, bits of adventure, a lot of FMV cutscenes backed with books with art. It used mipmapping to do very big open spaces and used texture filtering. This game will work with glide wrapper, but fans created a unique wrapper especially for this game:

JkGfxMod

allowing to run games on modern hardware, using modern APIs and any resolutions you want, with HUD scaling and support of 32bit colors.

There is instructions how to install it

Nothing complex, only thing that for GOG and Steam versions you need 1.0 original EXE file.

JKversions tool from this page can help you to generate 1.0 version exe from your steam/gog one

 

Of course, there is already a bunch of graphical mods that now using this game, new models, texture upscales, effects. To be fair, in my opinion this HD stuff do not fit original world and simplistic model animations, but if you want you may try them. On MODDB you can find on page of jkGfxMod a bunch of them, like textures and updated effects

 

Another piece of advice would be to keep the 4:3 aspect ratio - the reason is that the first-person weapon model made as a separate layer. It like a 2d sprite HUD of older games, but 3d model, so when you make a widescreen, the game just cuts the weapon model, so you see less of your gun on the screen. Maybe it is fixed in later jkGFX but keep eye on that. If you have trouble with mouse sensitivity, in options it has separate sensitivity options for vertical and horizontal. If it is still a bit "laggy", I can advise lower sensitivity in-game, but make more high sensitivity of your mouse itself, if your mouse has a button for that.

 

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Today what I want to talk about is a bunch of Bethesda XNgine games. Specifically: two last bethesda Terminator Titles, Future Shock and SKYnet.

Xngine was a very advanced true-3d render developed by old Bethesda Softworks in 1994-1995. It was primary developed for their Terminator: Future Shock but another project from another Bethesda sub-team also used it for the famous The Elder Scrolls II Daggerfall.

Future Shock came out in December of 1995, and in my opinion, this is the most advanced game for its time. Short description of why this game is so awesome and advanced is in the collapsable spoiler.

Spoiler

Using segmented 3d polygonal textured models and enemies and most of the objects, featuring big semi-open levels with the exterior-interior system, allowing a player to explore a lot of houses from inside. Also featuring riding on 3d cars and flying 3d craft sequences inside the mentioned levels. Level geometry mostly made by external 3d models, not actual map brushes, which cause minor problems with collision, because of limits of collision coordinates, but nobody really did this type of level building up until the 00s at all. Additionally, the game allowing full customize controls and bases itself on the mouselook-WASD scheme of movement and came out only on the CD. Because very limited budget to promote this game and actually print copies (they published it by their own resources, the majority of game copies were produced in early 1996, after Christmas) this game was in the deep shadow of the upcoming Quake and Duke Nukem 3d. This game is also what "arcade shooters" fans disliked for gameplay. This is not an arcade shooter, it has more slow pacing gameplay where you most times should go on an open level from point A to point B and exploring level why you are doing so, avoiding dangers like mines and radiation, more closed parts of the levels like Skynet bases may feature even more slow gameplay, avoiding turrets and pass simple puzzles, making the game feels system shock-y. The game also featuring an awesome soundtrack in my opinion, very atmospheric, and also this is a story-based game with briefings with animated characters where you help resistance become bigger. In my opinion, this game for a time has a very solid art direction, with almost all objects and textures are hand-drawn by a small group of skilled artists and featuring almost no UV stretching, which is a miracle for so early full-3d game. I can not even metion all cool features of the game, like for example your thermal scope on future war laster gun showing actual render of what you are looking at or game map is full3d, showing render of the level of what you can see from bird perspective, or that enemies has segmented damage so you can destroy some parts of robot tank or destroy guns from robot turrets. I also love original Xngine walking mechanics, this games does feels like you playing actual character with legs, not flying blob.

Later, after Daggerfall, another sub-team (one where Todd Howard worked) did SKYnet - a standalone expansion with a new story, more weak (in my opinion) FMV cutscenes instead of hand-drawn characters, the game now has multiplayer, but also featuring great option which FS lacked: 640x480 SVGA resolution, against original FS 320x200 standard VGA and also farther draw distance. So the ideal way to play both games would be to download SKYnet first, (FS and SKYnet are abandonware. None of the people who made them work at Bethesda now except Todd, these games also from old Bethesda Softworks, before Zenimax, and also nobody cares and Bethesda because Terminator license would never publish these games in e-stores ever again) then configure it in DOSBox.
Specs: auto cycles and core, svga_s3 card, basically default settings. There is SETUP files where you should configure sound and music and this is all.

IMPORTANT! Every Xngine game has an installation info file in the directory with the ".dat" extension It should correspond directory you are mounting the game in DOSBox, so the game can find its files.

 

Then, there exists fan patch, which is easy to install. Besides mentioned list of bug fixes, it allowing to fully play original Future Shock from SKYnet menu! So you can play original game in 640x480! Copy SHOCK folder from Future Shock installation and you now have acces to Future Shock from SKYnet menu. Enjoy!

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Edited by ultrayoba (see edit history)

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17 hours ago, ultrayoba said:

Today what I want to talk about is a bunch of Bethesda XNgine games. Specifically: two last bethesda Terminator Titles, Future Shock and SKYnet.

Xngine was a very advanced true-3d render developed by old Bethesda Softworks in 1994-1995. It was primary developed for their Terminator: Future Shock but another project from another Bethesda sub-team also used it for the famous The Elder Scrolls II Daggerfall.

Future Shock came out in December of 1995, and in my opinion, this is the most advanced game for its time. Short description of why this game is so awesome and advanced is in the collapsable spoiler.

  Reveal hidden contents

Using segmented 3d polygonal textured models and enemies and most of the objects, featuring big semi-open levels with the exterior-interior system, allowing a player to explore a lot of houses from inside. Also featuring riding on 3d cars and flying 3d craft sequences inside the mentioned levels. Level geometry mostly made by external 3d models, not actual map brushes, which cause minor problems with collision, because of limits of collision coordinates, but nobody really did this type of level building up until the 00s at all. Additionally, the game allowing full customize controls and bases itself on the mouselook-WASD scheme of movement and came out only on the CD. Because very limited budget to promote this game and actually print copies (they published it by their own resources, the majority of game copies were produced in early 1996, after Christmas) this game was in the deep shadow of the upcoming Quake and Duke Nukem 3d. This game is also what "arcade shooters" fans disliked for gameplay. This is not an arcade shooter, it has more slow pacing gameplay where you most times should go on an open level from point A to point B and exploring level why you are doing so, avoiding dangers like mines and radiation, more closed parts of the levels like Skynet bases may feature even more slow gameplay, avoiding turrets and pass simple puzzles, making the game feels system shock-y. The game also featuring an awesome soundtrack in my opinion, very atmospheric, and also this is a story-based game with briefings with animated characters where you help resistance become bigger. In my opinion, this game for a time has a very solid art direction, with almost all objects and textures are hand-drawn by a small group of skilled artists and featuring almost no UV stretching, which is a miracle for so early full-3d game. I can not even metion all cool features of the game, like for example your thermal scope on future war laster gun showing actual render of what you are looking at or game map is full3d, showing render of the level of what you can see from bird perspective, or that enemies has segmented damage so you can destroy some parts of robot tank or destroy guns from robot turrets. I also love original Xngine walking mechanics, this games does feels like you playing actual character with legs, not flying blob.

Later, after Daggerfall, another sub-team (one where Todd Howard worked) did SKYnet - a standalone expansion with a new story, more weak (in my opinion) FMV cutscenes instead of hand-drawn characters, the game now has multiplayer, but also featuring great option which FS lacked: 640x480 SVGA resolution, against original FS 320x200 standard VGA and also farther draw distance. So the ideal way to play both games would be to download SKYnet first, (FS and SKYnet are abandonware. None of the people who made them work at Bethesda now except Todd, these games also from old Bethesda Softworks, before Zenimax, and also nobody cares and Bethesda because Terminator license would never publish these games in e-stores ever again) then configure it in DOSBox.
Specs: auto cycles and core, svga_s3 card, basically default settings. There is SETUP files where you should configure sound and music and this is all.

IMPORTANT! Every Xngine game has an installation info file in the directory with the ".dat" extension It should correspond directory you are mounting the game in DOSBox, so the game can find its files.

 

Then, there exists fan patch, which is easy to install. Besides mentioned list of bug fixes, it allowing to fully play original Future Shock from SKYnet menu! So you can play original game in 640x480! Copy SHOCK folder from Future Shock installation and you now have acces to Future Shock from SKYnet menu. Enjoy!

 

Sounds like it could be a relatively easy total-conversion in FO4 if you really wanted... I'd play it.

Don't insult me. I have trained professionals to do that.

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4 hours ago, BTGBullseye said:

Sounds like it could be a relatively easy total-conversion in FO4 if you really wanted... I'd play it.

I think, no. This is a first-person shooter made on Xngine. Fallout 4 is a sort of action-adventure made by other people on their current Gamebryo version whatever it is called nowadays, "creation engine" or whatever. I doubt you can make an unrelated FPS game on a closed source engine on which Bethesda provides only a limited editor. Bethesda stopped using Xngine since morrowind, because all people who created it and maitained left company in late 90s and to times of Morrowind it was already other Bethesda. So they just bought third party Netimmerse/Gamebryo which they breaking to this day.

I seen some attemt at "unity port" of these games, however yea, I feel meh about unity ports in general. I hope one day LuciusDXL wil get back for Xngine once he will be done with "The Force Engine" for Dark Forces and Outlaws. However I may say that fully configured and fan patched, this game fully playable. It has no any major issues and probably the least bugged bethesda game. And 640x480 more than enough for detail of this game.

 

Speaking about Xngine games, not mentioning Daggerfall because yes, it has a unity port and active modding community on it, but Daggerfall is whole another issue by itself deserving super-giant post one day. Past Daggerfall and SKYnet, there were more Xngine games: Battlespire, Xcar experimental Racing, and Redguard. The new feature for them is the support of the 3DFx hardware acceleration - so, technically, with the modern glide wrappers unlimited possibilities in resolution, texture filtering, and other graphics features. Battlespire and Xcar are DOS titles primarily, so there are multiple options for how to set up glide wrappers for them, there were multiple DOSBox forks with Glide support. Redguard adds a layer of complication because it has a Windows launcher but it is still a dos game. The latest versions of Battlespire and Redguard on GoG are work fine out of the box so if you don't want to tinker with this mess you can just install them.

Answering questions about Redguard:

-Yes, game slowdown and speed up during time after loading is not a wrapper but an original bug that exists on real hardware.

-Yes, the game locked to 30 FPS and has no animation interpolation

-Yes, IIRC, the game does not support mouse and about combat controls, I'd advise reading the manual.

-Yes, this game is janky as hell, but it is a very fun open-world adventure past its engine issues. This game was made at the decline of old Bethesda, already by different people, since old Xngine/Terminator and TES team people left Bethesda in 1997.

 

Here is a screenshot from my playthought of the Redguard on my old 1440x900 screen.

Untitled.png

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Addition about Redguard: I want to replay it in 4k lol

 

YdSBED4.jpg

 

Additionally, I mapped a controller via the joy-to-key to play from a gamepad, since it feels like the perfect game to do this. I did something like directional buttons for movement, triangle for a jump, X for an action, Square to draw a sword, circle for quick health usage, L1 for a shift, L2 for an alt, to block in combat mode or rotate the camera in regular mode, 2nd stick now works as shift+arrowkeys for walk-strafe mode and strafe-run in combat, the first stick is on item scroll. Other buttons are map/menu/log/full inventory etc.

Quite happy with it, the game really plays nice this way.

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On 11/13/2020 at 12:09 PM, ultrayoba said:

3.DosBox Game Launcher - good GUI for DosBox. Instead of having multiple dosbox installations, editing dosbox text configuration files you may have this. Have multiple Dosbox versions inside, create profiles for game and all configurations for every game you want in user-friendly way. Well, you may build an actual DOS PC in PCem, but if you are using the DosBox, this is good way to go. Sometimes for specific configurations for games that may requre some specific tweaks it is good to visit DosBox compability pages for game you searching

 

The link for their website is not working. Expired connection problem, and it's been like this for days.

 

Luckily, this program can be found in other websites to download, you just need to google it.

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1 hour ago, Kaiosama TLJ said:

 

The link for their website is not working. Expired connection problem, and it's been like this for days.

 

Luckily, this program can be found in other websites to download, you just need to google it.

Yea, looks like they are closed their website and moved elswere. I'll change the link in the post later.

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8 hours ago, Kaiosama TLJ said:

 

The link for their website is not working. Expired connection problem, and it's been like this for days.

 

Luckily, this program can be found in other websites to download, you just need to google it.

here's an alternative

https://www.squadrablu.nl/dbgl/

 

Burn the World!

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9 hours ago, kerdios said:

here's an alternative

https://www.squadrablu.nl/dbgl/

 

Thank you, I edited the OP post.

 

Also, maybe it is not super on-topic, however might help to make some games "playable" for modern players: I mean good old 80s and early 90s CRPGs. A lot of them have several limitations because of the hardware they were created for or ideas about gameplay from the time period they came out: no certain stats and features in the interface, lack of some world information, sometimes lack any kind of automap.  So nowadays there are exist "companion programs" for some of the titles.


Where are we? - is the companion program for a good number of titles: it works with all classic RPG Might and Magic series from "The Secret of the Inner Sanctum" to "World of Xeen", original Bard's Tale Trilogy, and classic Wizardry 1-5 games. Note that the program was created for the DOS versions played via DOSBox, so, it'll not work with, for example, ScummVM port of "World of Xeen" (not that MM3 Isles of terra and MM4-5 World of Xeen really need it, these games are pretty user friendly even for modern standards except the inability to look at item stats in the inventory)

 

Gold Box Companion - is the companion program for the games made on the "gold box" engine. Well, back in the time there was no such term as "gold box engine" really, and "gold box" engine is more of a fan name. It is an umbrella term made for a series of CRPG games made and published by SSI. SSI, guys who owned DnD license on video game market from 1988 to the mid-90s made and published a horde of DnD videogames, including Eye of the Beholder trilogy and almost everything DreamForge did. However, we specifically talking about games that were in the bix boxes with "gold border", which clearly was made using the same technology. These games are:

  • The Pool of Radiance Forgotten Realms series (developed internally at SSI):
  1. Pool of Radiance (1988)
  2. Curse of the Azure Bonds (1989)
  3. Secret of the Silver Blades (1990)
  4. Pools of Darkness (1991)
  • The Savage Frontier Forgotten Realms series (developed by Stormfront Studios):
  1. Gateway to the Savage Frontier (1991)
  2. Neverwinter Nights, the first graphical MMORPG, for AOL (1991) (Yes, ORIGINAL Neverwiter Nights is from 1991, I still like to confuse people by that)
  3. Treasures of the Savage Frontier (1992)
  • The Dragonlance series (the first two developed by SSI, the last by MicroMagic, Inc.):
  1. Champions of Krynn (1990)
  2. Death Knights of Krynn (1991)
  3. The Dark Queen of Krynn (1992)
  • The Buck Rogers games (developed by SSI):
  1. Countdown to Doomsday (1990)
  2. Matrix Cubed (1992)

Most often you can transfer the saves inside the series, or, even in some separate SSI products, like after Pool of Radiance you may port your saves into Hillsfar and then port them into Curse of the Azure Bonds. In many ways, this series of games is precurse for late 90s isometric RPGs from the late 90s. They in the late 80s-early90s established new concepts of plot-driven CRPGs which became something standard when you think about the genre today. But some of their interface limitations may feel annoying today, so this user-friendly companion might be a big help for a new player.

 

THE ALL-SEEING EYE - is the similar map program for the Eye of the Beholder trilogy, again, for the DOS versions of the game played via DOS Box. Not that these games really need it, they are not that complicated, but this program might help novices to get into it. Also, contain descriptions of specific points and some other minor features.

 

Wizardry 6 automap mod - and yet another similar program, now for Wizardry 6. It was not updated since 2014, but it works with the DOS version. Here I can understand the need for the map program, Wiz6 very complex game, and I felt that lack of automap, same as only one tileset across the whole game is the result of limited time and resources for the development.

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56 minutes ago, ultrayoba said:

...

Thank you, very illuminating. :)

Burn the World!

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NEVERMIND. FOR SOME REASON LOOKS LIKE TAKE-TWO "LAW"YERS BANNED THIS FAN RPOJECT FROM GITHUB BY DCMA STRIKE EVEN THO IT NOT CONTAIN ANY ORIGINAL GAME FILES AND REQURE ORIGINAL GAMES TO WORK

 

re3 is an ambitious port of the 3d era GTA engines. Recently, it hit major milestones and now GTA3 and Vice City are fully playable with some additional features. You may ask, why GTA needs a new engine. Well, there is no "best" version of the game, all versions have some issues, changes, censorship or broken features, or some limits of customizable options, etc. I will not go on a huge wall of text about all of it, but from what I see, this engine might be a new defined way to play these games and will help preserve them in the future.

There is the official list of new features

 

We have implemented a number of changes and improvements to the original game. They can be configured in core/config.h. Some of them can be toggled at runtime, some cannot.

  • Fixed a lot of smaller and bigger bugs
  • User files (saves and settings) stored in GTA root directory
  • Settings stored in re3.ini file instead of gta3.set
  • Debug menu to do and change various things (Ctrl-M to open)
  • Debug camera (Ctrl-B to toggle)
  • Rotatable camera
  • XInput controller support (Windows)
  • No loading screens between islands ("map memory usage" in menu)
  • Skinned ped support (models from Xbox or Mobile)
  • Rendering
  1. Widescreen support (properly scaled HUD, Menu and FOV)
  2. PS2 MatFX (vehicle reflections)
  3. PS2 alpha test (better rendering of transparency)
  4. PS2 particles
  5. Xbox vehicle rendering
  6. Xbox world lightmap rendering (needs Xbox map)
  7. Xbox ped rim light
  8. Xbox screen rain droplets
  9. More customizable colourfilter
  • Menu
  1. Map
  2. More options
  3. Controller configuration menu
  4. ...
  • Can load DFFs and TXDs from other platforms, possibly with a performance penalty
  • ...

Mods that make changes to the code (dll/asi, CLEO, limit adjusters) will not work. Some things these mods do are already implemented in re3 (much of SkyGFX, GInput, SilentPatch, Widescreen fix), others can easily be achieved (increasing limis, see config.h), others will simply have to be rewritten and integrated into the code directly. Sorry for the inconvenience.

 

They want to support more "3d era" GTA games in the future

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Edited by ultrayoba (see edit history)

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https://github.com/zaps166/NFSIISE

A proprietary wrapper for the Need for Speed 2SE. It does not even require installation of the game, which may be annoying since x64 systems do not support 16bit apps. You just drag game files from the CD into the folder with newly modified exe files and play the game! Here is a bunch of screenshots in 4k. Of course, this is a hardware-accelerated version, so no interior camera. But the same creator made a non-glide version https://github.com/zaps166/NFSIISEN

I have not tried it myself yet.

Need For Speed Ii Se Screenshot 2021.02.20 - 01.38.15.23.png

Need For Speed Ii Se Screenshot 2021.02.20 - 01.36.57.46.png

Need For Speed Ii Se Screenshot 2021.02.20 - 01.22.37.56.png

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16 hours ago, Traales said:

A lot of usefull info and games! Thanks for this topic.

 

Very happy to hear that this thread was useful for someone.

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@ultrayoba regarding dbgl, do you know how to make the find config file and mobi game data in the wizard work? I've tried it with at least 5 games I have and none of the attempts were successful.

Burn the World!

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11 hours ago, kerdios said:

@ultrayoba regarding dbgl, do you know how to make the find config file and mobi game data in the wizard work? I've tried it with at least 5 games I have and none of the attempts were successful.

Honestly, I don't use actual wizard at all. Here is how I usually add a game profile.

I clicking add a profile. In "game name" I type name of the game then hit the "M" button here. It'll do a search on the Mobygames. I choose the game I need from the list and it adds description and allows me to choose a cover. I can edit a name and description after it.

Then go to the Mounting tab. Here, you can browse exe for the game and after it it'll automatically add game folder as "mounted C drive". Since this is CD game, and many CD games requre CD inside drive while running, I added path to Image of the CD to mount as D. Both CD and gamefiles I put inside Dosbox game launcher dosroot folder, so it'll be portable. Also as "setup" usually in folders of DOS games there is "setup.exe" or "installation.exe" or "sound.exe" etc., this is exe to configure what sound device you'll game will use.

Rest is opotional thing. For example for this game I type midiconfig "0" in sound options, since I configured it to play music from general midi and my general midi device is VirtualMIDISynth player, which on my machine is listed as 0 device. And for playing sounds I set in game soundblaster 16, game ask for its addres and you can also see it here. And this is my usual video ssetings to have correct unfiltered graphics is Openglnb render, none scaler, my desktop resolution in fullscreen and Aspect ratio correction for clear correct picture.
And here is the game! You can place your own cover. Just right click on the game, open captures folder and there will be you choosen cover file. Place any picture and name it same way. Also example of setup menu in Warcraft, it'll ask for Soundcard, DMA, port etc., set here all same way as it set up in your audio tab in DBGL game profile.

Desktop Screenshot 2021.03.12 - 16.45.29.48.png

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War set.png

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