After reading Masters of Doom, I was eager to see if anyone had preserved a particular video from 1995. It turns out it’s been posted to WeGame.com:
That’s just neat. Bill’s efforts at the time didn’t go to waste, either. Pretty much all of Good Old Games’ catalog comes from a few years after that video was made.
I remember when PCs absolutely dominated the consoles in terms of quality games. It wasn’t that long ago, though most of those who are College Freshmen now might be a little too young to appreciate The Golden Age. (Actually, I would include a lot of the best games of the “MS DOS headache” era as part of The Golden Age because a lot of them were remade for, updated for, or emulated in Windows 95 and 98. Stuff like the Infocom Collections, Lucasarts Collections, Ultima Collections and so on. Stuff you just can’t buy anymore, though if you’re persistent you might be able to track down on an Abandonware site.)
It’s amazing how few people care about PC gaming nowadays. I know that unless you’re a hardware nut for the sake of being a hardware nut, upgrading is generally considered a pain at best, but there’s a ton of games right now which will work on the computer you are using right now (even if you’re using a Mac). I can say this because the minimum specifications for a computer which can run Windows XP or Vista is actually ridiculously powerful in terms of absolute processing power.
What do I mean by that? Screw Crysis and Unreal Tournament 3, is what I’m saying. The engines that run those games are ridiculously inefficient and actually designed for the average computer of 2012, not 2008. Ignore those games altogether, and frankly those make up an insignificant amount of the available games you can play right now.
In fact, go to the store (Best Buy, Circuit City, or whatever equivalent big store) and ignore all games priced over $30. Pay particular attention to anything $20 or less. Yes, even the “casual” section, if that’s what you’re into. Take a good look around. There’s plenty to play on the PC. But beyond the store, there’s a ton of things to play that you can only get on the Internet. Not just Flash games or demos, either. Tons of stuff. Way too much to stuff into just one post, so I’ll be elaborating on all the different kinds of stuff you can get in later posts.
And, much as I grudgingly hate to admit it (especially considering Vista), we do owe a big deal to Bill Gates and the folks at Microsoft for making it all possible in the first place.