This week, over 2,400 MS DOS games were released on the Internet Archive allowing all the DOS heads out there to play oldies like Oregon Trail free in browser. We dug up some of the less remembered classics that are worth takin’ out for a drive.
DOOM Custodian (1993)
This game from ID Software came out shortly after the first DOOM exploded in popularity. Doom Custodian is commonly called DOOM1.5- while developing DOOM2 they released this modified version of the first title to appease the raucous fans of the series. The objective is to clean up the mess the space marines made while fighting hell demons on Phobos. Much of the addicting gameplay is spent doing as little as possible for as long as possible, in order to increase OT hours.
Time Out! (1989)
This under-appreciated title from Ikenaki Tsukogama Software has risen in popularity online in the past few years. Reknown for it’s realistic gameplay and engaging character dynamics, the objective is to prevent your child from leaving the corner so he can think about what he’s done. The child will attempt to leave the corner by having temper tantrums, abruptly running, throwing his voice, and calling for mommy. Your arsenal of lesson-instilling tools includes pointing, strong language, spankings, and threats of further spankings. At the end of the game the overall punishment score is assessed: if it’s too low the child grows up to be an asshole, if it’s too high the child is taken away.
See the Circle: Get a Punch (1998)
Based on the classic game of skill and wit, an opponent controlled by the computer tries to get the player to look at a circle made with forefinger and thumb (only below the waist). If the player is tricked and looks at the circle they get a punch in the arm. An early example of AR gameplay, the player is required to tell the computer whether they have looked at the circle, and if so must find someone to punch them in the arm before continuing the game.
Princess of Persia (1990)
Princess of Persia is a female-targeted sequel to the original Prince of Persia, released in 1989. Rather than hunting for treasure and conquering kingdoms, the objective of the Princess’s quest is to find a mate while concealing her body. In the climactic final stage of the game, the protagonist’s father chooses her groom without her consent.
Published by Electronic Arts in 1989, the PC blockbuster SimCity has spawned several different editions sold worldwide. The ongoing success of SimCity has also sparked the release of many other spin-off “Sim” titles, including our favorite, 1990’s SimBody.
In SimBody, the player is given the task of being in a constantly aging body, while maintaining it’s health and cleanliness. The player must brush teeth, shower, exercise, healthy food, and perform other preventative maintenance chores day after day for a lifetime. As the game progresses it becomes more and more challenging to do these simple tasks without the assistance of family members or a nursing professional.
Loopy ball (1987)
Loopy Ball is one of the first games for DOS developed by the Microsoft Corporation. The surprisingly addicting game consists entirely of a ball bouncing in unexpected ways and the player trying to catch it in a basket! Typical physics games like Arkanoid or Pong rely on predictable and logical bounce trajectory. This game stands out for utilizing completely random bounce height and direction, for extremely difficult- and fun- gameplay.
Original Art by Tim Bierbaum