All Hail Abandonware!

Legally this is a grey area, technically it is still owned by a copyright holder but as the game is no longer being sold or supported by the copyright holder the law tends to ignore the abandonware sites that are up on the Internet.

I’m a gamer, I love nothing better than settling back and getting absorbed into a wonderful game – usually an excellent FPS, RPG, strategy or simulation. I’ve never really done online gaming as WoW or any of the other major online games really appeal to me and I’ve heard a lot of them don’t really have a n00b friendly atmosphere going on. I imagine it’s like anything else – anominity + the Internet = arseholes.

As I’m not really in a position to get stuck into some of the current greats I’ve been revisiting my back catalogue, starting of course with my all time favourite games ‘Theme Hospital’, ‘Simon the Sorcerer’ and ‘Fallout’ – some of these run a little funny on Vista and I had a right time getting ‘Simon the Sorcerer’ to install! But overall, I was happy and got to play. There are two other of my all time favourite games that I’ve not been able to play for a long time though, ‘Ripper’ (one of those interactive live action games, believe it rocks) and ‘The Lost Files of Sherlock Holmes: The Case of the Rose Tattoo’, it’s a little sad when I want to play these favourites but can’t but I’ve found a way to fill the void they have left in my life.

For my 13th birthday (I think it was that one) I got given a box-set of Star Trek games (‘Star Trek: 25th Annivsary’, ‘Star Trek: TNG’, ‘Star Trek: Generations’, ‘Starfleet Academy’) most of these I enjoyed (‘Generations’ sucked) and I was particularly taken with the ’25th Anniversay’ game and ‘Starfleet Academy’ – I can’t find ‘Starfleet Academy’ to play but I did find ’25th Anniversay’ (possibly the greatest Star Trek game ever) on Abandonia, along with it’s sequel ‘Judgement Rites’ (which I’d never heard of).

Not only was I able to return to my Trek gaming routes, but I found the first ‘Lost Files…’ game, along with ‘Constructor’ (I was slightly addicted to this), ‘Castles’, ‘Dune’, ‘Dune II’ and several other games I had played when young (or already knew about). I plan to dedicate some more time to explore some past masters that I missed growing up or didn’t really get too much of chance to play – who needs the fancy graphics of today when you’ve got the great storylines and gameplay of yesteryear?

Incidentally – Oddword has been re-released! My brother had ‘Oddysee’ and ‘Exodus’ on his PS2 and I was a massive fan of Abe and his adventures, I had no idea they’d ever been released on the PC though! (Nor that there were more games). I had a bit of an issue with Steam (nothing compared to the hassle I had with the EA Games Downloader, least said about that the better) but I think I need to try again, particularly if little gems like Abe are going to be released on there.

One day when I finally have a place of my own I want to build myself a brilliant gaming computer, create myself a little cubbly hole where I can just go get lost in other words. Since I’d own the flat I could decorate it like I want… maybe a nice Star Trek theme (but I’d definitly not do what that bloke did by turning his entire flat into the bridge of Voyager) in the furnishings… possibly Star Trek cross with Sherlock Holmes – does that count as a ‘cyberpunk’?

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