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Bringing back the dead ?

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I have been wondering about that on for ages, mostly when browsing Abandonware websites and downloading oldies I absolutely loved when I played them first. Do you ever get that ? Having wonderful memories of a game, remembering the colours, the interactivity, the incredible immersion ... then you download it, and the 16 colours doesnt look that cool anymore (except Hentai games... those guys can certainly use 16 colours the way it should be ), the interface is awful, and it''s almost unplayable, if the whole thing runs at all (thanks WinXP). Well, the thing is, some of those games ARE brilliant, and with a little lifting, I am convinced they could still be kicking ass. I think about something like Darklands, a superb RPG from 1991 in medieval Germany, or some old puzzle games like Oxyd, ShufflePuck, etc. Is it just me or there is a gold mine there waiting to be dug ?
Sancte Isidore ora pro nobis !

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Guest Anonymous Poster
a number of the old lucas arts and sierra games are much the same. the old police quest games were great - even though you had to TYPE IN what you wanted the guy to do:

"open door" yields: [i dont know what to do]
"turn doorknob" yields: [why?]
"open the f***ing door you moron!" yields: [if you do that, sgt dooley will climb your back!]

anyways, it was fun when it did what you wanted.

-geo

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Guest Anonymous Poster
you should try games like ''the dig'' ''full throttle'' ''day of the tentacle'' ''sam and max hit the road'' ''indiana jones and the fate of atlantis'' (all lucas arts) the earlier ''police quest'' games, ''kings quest'' ''space quest'' and ''the black cauldron'' (all sierra games)

these were all really fun games to play, and they are all sitting next to me, quite unplayable thanks to XP. or if they do play, the sound doesnt work. Or, black cauldron: it runs at about 3,000 fps, and you cant even see the damn charater anymore because when you tap the right arrow, he is suddenly all the way across the level asking why you ran him into a tree. and that on the ''slowest'' setting...

anyways, i would love to see some of these old games come back to life in 3d 32bpp mode. so many of the older games had more in depth plot and more difficult puzzles. anyways, i hope you put together some great games from this: if you do, please post something here! i would love to play some old-style games remade!

good luck!!

-geo

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Guest Anonymous Poster
quote:
Original post by ahw

Is it just me or there is a gold mine there waiting to be dug ?




Yes and no.

Yes, there are a lot of older games that are great.

No, because they are protected by copyright for about a century. Given the problems getting them to run after 10 year (or less), I doubt the games will even be remembered by the time they become public domain.

Even if a game isn''t being sold, made, or marketed, few companies will release their intellectual property for someone else to develop.

With the rapid rise and fall of game companies, it''s likely that the sources used to make the games are lost along the way. So even if you wanted to remake them, you''d end up starting over from scratch.

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quote:
Original post by Anonymous Poster
With the rapid rise and fall of game companies, it''s likely that the sources used to make the games are lost along the way. So even if you wanted to remake them, you''d end up starting over from scratch.



Well, that''s the point. I just think there are brilliant concepts out there that were tried in the past when the UI were crap, the sound were crap, the graphics were crap, and yet they were succesful. What would happen if someone decided to recreate such games (BTW, I dont see any point in doing a remake of an adventure game, why replay an adventure if you can do a new one)
with modern technologies ?

For instance I cant stop thinking of Darklands.
This game by Microprose (from 1991) is a RPG based in XVth century Germany. You start the game with a team of 4 and from there you are on your own. Open ended game.
You can roam the countryside looking for adventure, you can stay in town and take some job to earn some money (yes, you dont have to kill goblins to earn money !!! incredible concept, isn''t it ?)
The magic is simply praying to saint patrons (and of course, you dont know ALL patrons, you have to discover them as you travel in different churches and libraries), and you can also use alchemy and various recipes to create cool potions.
The interface was very cool, because instead of trying to model several dozen medieval towns, they simply decided to use a menu system, why bother modelling a whole town if you are not gonna allow the player to do anything more than access a few shops ?

Now with todays hard drive capacity, sound/gfx/AI, I really wonder what kind of game this would give us (although I am still waiting to play Morrowind which might just be it)



Sancte Isidore ora pro nobis !

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Hey ahw, I''ve encountered the exact same thought this weekend... I found and downloaded Powermonger (a great game from Bullfrog). The thing brought back tones of memories just reading about it and when I downloaded to play it ran much too fast for it to be fun... and I started thinking that it would be fun to re-create (code) the game for modern computers.

There are legal issues to wrangle... I think if you were to re-create one of these games and distibute it as freeware that you should be ok. BUT, I''m no a lawyer... so don''t quote me on this. I do know that there are numerous people working on Ultima rewrites... search Google.

If anyone rewrites Powermonger be sure to send it to me, I loved that game

Dave "Dak Lozar" Loeser

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<opinion>
This sounds like a good idea at first. Hell, it could be great, depending on the game. I think of how I''d love a modern version of X-Com UFO Defense. Realistic lighting, fire and smoke effects. Deformable terrain. Atmospheric effects. Great AI, aliens stalking me in warehouses, jungles, spacecraft.

And then I realize that I''m no longer playing the game that I loved. I''m playing yet another game in which graphics are the big selling point. The nostalgia is gone.

I think that a certain degree of imagination is still required in games. When we play games that look terrific but we still complain of a lack of gameplay, it''s because there''s just not much left to our imaginations.
</opinion>


"If people are good only because they fear punishment and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed." - Albert Einstein

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Man, gotta love the old games.

What about Jones in the Fast lane? It was like an earlier version of the sims except competetive. You have your one sim and you have to get a job and make lots of money and decorate your house, and you can play it with a bunch of other players.

Or Stronghold? (The old one) An old 3D realtime strategy game with a bunch of npcs with their own DnD stats to order around, and tons of different buildings you can build to expand your empire?

Or settlers: here''s another example of an "oldgame" that should have stayed an "oldgame". The 3rd and 4th incarnations were travesties.

Out of this world: One of the most cinematic games ever, this one had you on the edge of your seat. And the graphics are still pretty good.

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quote:
Original post by core

This sounds like a good idea at first. Hell, it could be great, depending on the game. I think of how I''d love a modern version of X-Com UFO Defense. Realistic lighting, fire and smoke effects. Deformable terrain. Atmospheric effects. Great AI, aliens stalking me in warehouses, jungles, spacecraft.

And then I realize that I''m no longer playing the game that I loved. I''m playing yet another game in which graphics are the big selling point. The nostalgia is gone.

I think that a certain degree of imagination is still required in games. When we play games that look terrific but we still complain of a lack of gameplay, it''s because there''s just not much left to our imaginations.



If the game is fun, the game is fun. Graphics won''t have anything to do with it, unless you really are playing it just for nostalgia reasons. In that case, the game''s probably not as good as you remember anyhow.

In some cases, I can see how making the graphics better could negatively affect the game. Leisure Suit Larry, for instance, would probably be less fun in 3d, because graphics were actually a big part of that game. But properly done, a 2d remake would be great.

If you want imagination, read a book.

At the very least, I''d like to see an identical copy of the game made, just rewritten so that modern computers could run it. You could cram a shitload of games onto one CD that way, since the filesizes wouldn''t change too much. And games like Police Quest should be given a damn Thesaurus. I''d have loved that game, if not for the fact that the parser was so stupid.

CM

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speaking of old games not working in XP...
Did you try compatability mode? That usually works for me. If you dont know how, right click the exe, click on properties, then click on the compatability tab and select the flavor of windows you want to try, apply and try.

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quote:

And then I realize that I''m no longer playing the game that I loved. I''m playing yet another game in which graphics are the big selling point. The nostalgia is gone.



Point taken, but if you think about it, most games we love so much to remember had tremendous graphics for their time (I still remember the review for Darklands :"Wow! you can see the chain of the flail moving while you walk!"),
but it wasnt, just like for any good game, the main reason.
XCom had quite cool graphics but mostly it was a brilliant turn based tactical game, something that was and still is much better than all this Diablo crap, since I dont think there is any game that is vaguely as interesting and complex than XCom nowadays.

My point is, if we brought back some of the oldies, we could possibly reinject some life in a more or less *boring* industry.
Oh, yeah, there are still some great games around, some are even original, with concepts that we havent seen before (well, that one is maybe a bit pushing it ), but mostly we are in a low period IMHO.

If you have got a better idea to get the flame of creativity back in this dwindling industry, I''d like to hear it




Sancte Isidore ora pro nobis !

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oh, i''d like to see remakes of the FF series...up to FF7, think how great it would be to play them with the doom3 graphic engine

the ''fps-problem'' on modern pcs:
there''s a tool somewhere on the net called ''slowdown'' which can slow your pc down(it''s really great and easy to use)

i searched for it and there are a lot of programms for slowing your pc down in the inet!
i didn''t find the one i wantet, but this one does not sound bad to me

AngelForce

--
If you find any mistakes, you''re allowed to keep ''em!

''When I look back I am lost.''

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Well, re-hashing old concepts is not exactly the flame of creativity , is it?

After all, this is exactly the formula that the game industry is following these days. The only problem with the formula is that it is a very narrow group of concepts that are being rehashed again and again.

What I think would be great is not that developers/designers rehash old bestseller, but instead take a long, hard look at design concepts in older games.

No one seems to bother looking at those games that didn't quite make it (as bestsellers) but which contain lots of interesting concepts and ideas. E.g., the 4X space empire genre churns out one Master of Orion clone after another, and yet none of them bother to consider a diamond in the rough such as "Emperor of the Fading Suns". The list of interesting concepts in old games are huge; all it takes is that someone bother to look back and consider them.

When it occasionally does happen, we tend to see new "stunning" bestseller games (e.g., Shogun:Total War and others).

As Albert Einstein once said: "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources".

A good example would be my own Imperium. No doubt there are some who would call it highly original when it comes out. I know that it is just a lot of interesting ideas from a lot of interesting games, and then tweaked a little bit.

Imperium - Rise of Rome

[edited by - strategy on August 19, 2002 6:36:01 AM]

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quote:
Original post by Strategy
Well, re-hashing old concepts is not exactly the flame of creativity , is it?


LOL, you got me on that one

quote:

After all, this is exactly the formula that the game industry is following these days. The only problem with the formula is that it is a very narrow group of concepts that are being rehashed again and again.


Precisely. So if the guys out there arent capable of original thought, they might as well try to widen their scope and dig out the dead.

quote:

What I think would be great is not that developers/designers rehash old bestseller, but instead take a long, hard look at design concepts in older games.


Right, that''s more what I was trying to say, so I guess we agree then



Sancte Isidore ora pro nobis !

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I went to a ROM site before to check out all the old games I remember from back in the day, and they all rated a 4 or 5 out of 5. I think that the driving force of the "nostalgia factor" is the "fun factor", which is what makes a game good to begin with. I don''t want a hardware demo, I want a game. It''s not that 2D is inherently more fun than flashy 3D, it''s that the simplicity added to the challenge, which made it more fun. With newer action games, you have to worry about spacial orientation and camera angles. In an older action game, you only had to worry about dodging stuff and hitting stuff.

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http://www.ece.mcgill.ca/~vromas/vdmsound/

This gizmo runs just about anything you''ve played on your MS DOS 28-, 38- or 48sixes.

Even Star Legions!

That''s a game I''d like to see come back to life with nitty-witty graphics. That''s why I dedicated it a SourceForge project. It''s still in heavy planning though...

What? The game has already been made, so what''s the planning, you ask?
Silly little penguin! There are lot''s of different things to consider these days. Like a realtime version, multiplayer over the internet,programming language...
So there.

Don''t expect any results anytime soon.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
to five foot freak...

thank you! i really wanted to be able to play all these old dos-based games again... theyre really pretty fun to play, and to lucin: NO! Compatability Wizard did not work! I already tried. It fixes newer games (like R6- Rogue Spear) but not the really old ones. Or if it helps, you still don''t get sound.

Anyways, thank you!

-geo-

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