Mac Alternatives to PC versions(Image Intensive)

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Mac Alternatives to PC versions

Postby Nicht Sehr Gut » 2002-10-08 @ 06:20

Started new thread for PC titles that might still run fine on Modern machines, but it's still worth your time to check the Mac version.
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Wolfenstein 3D

Postby Nicht Sehr Gut » 2002-10-08 @ 06:39

Wolfenstein 3D

Still remember when the PC guys had this, but I couldn't play it on my Amiga. So I emulated the Mac and played it's version instead.
That spoiled me. The PC version has it's own charm, but I still prefer the Mac's. 640x480 is nice since, even though everything is basically pixel-doubled from the PC version, it's also apparent that there was a lot of "touched-up graphics". It works, as the graphics stay the same, but they tend to be less "chunky".

The addition of the on-screen map is a great help as I'm no cartographer. I was stunned to find this missing on the PC version. Early levels weren't much of a problem, but more advanced maps became a "maze-o-rama".

The best feature for me was the replacement of the AdLib music and sound effects (and the 8-bit SoundBlaster audio) with very good 16-bit digital music and sound effects. It's different, but it works.

One thing struck me odd was how the maps are different. Not completely different, just close enough to the originals...yet not the same.

Downside? Not as many different tunes as the PC version (IIRC).
Hrmm. No demo mode?

<Mac Advantages> Mostly audio enhancements, but some nice visual touches as well. On-screen map.
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Postby Snover » 2002-10-08 @ 23:34

Gotta love those 2.5D graphics.
I think there was a cheat that you could use to get the map in the PC version. Either that or it was in the Sword or Tower or someting of whatever (err, the sequel-y Wolfenstein. Yeah, good job I did identifying this one, heh).
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Postby Nicht Sehr Gut » 2002-11-17 @ 06:53

Master of Orion

Considering how fussy the PC version is on NT/2000/XP, I was tempted to plop this into the "Mac Solution" thread.

Unfortunately, there are some downsides to the Mac version as well. One of the first things I noticed was a lack of music. Any music. If it's in there, I've yet to hear it (this might actually be an emulation issue, but I can't confirm either way right now).

Secondly, the people who programmed the port apparently considered some graphics "frivolous". For example, When you start a new game: you choose a race, your flag, etc... In the PC version this is done on it's own screen using Icons for races and flags with nice "space image" as a backdrop. On the Mac version, it's simply a text window with menus. No images at all. Nothing crucial, but it loses some of the atmosphere of the original.

The good new is that some of the text has been replaced by the Mac's easier-to-read system fonts. Some icons were given extra "polish", as are some of the screen-size images (pixel-doubling with some touch-ups mostly) and everything runs the way it's supposed to.

Also, the StarMap is a normal Mac window with scrolling options (like the PC original or Mac standard). The smartest add-on has to be the PC-compatible export and import. This way you can swap saved games between systems easily.

<Mac Disadvantages>
Where's the music? Where are my icons?

<Mac Advantages> Nice clean (sometimes spartan) interface. Does everything it should with no fussing with Soundcard IRQ's, EMS memory,etc... Works just like it should.
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Postby DosFreak » 2002-11-17 @ 10:03

The sequel to Wolfenstein 3D is Spear of Destiny and I have it! MUAHAHAHAHHAH! (Was that insane laughter really necessary?)

Haven't tried the Mac ver of Wolf3d but I LOVE the WolfGL ver, ahhh Wolfenstein 3D @ 2048X1536 with full Ansio/AA! :D
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Postby Nicht Sehr Gut » 2002-11-23 @ 05:14

Dracula Unleashed

A hybrid Mac/PC game that itself is an Adventure/FMV hybrid.

Not a whole lot of difference between the Mac and PC versions.

The PC version has a 320x200 resolution mode available if your VESA video isn't working properly. The PC version also has auto-detecting sound and video so you shouldn't have to fuss much with soundcard IRQ's, etc... Having said that you probably will have to set up a batch script for it on an NT OS due to the way VESA and soundcards are handled under NT.

When you run the Mac version, you're getting almost identical audio-visuals as the VESA PC version and if you have working Mac emulation (such as Basilisk II), all you really need is load up and the CD and click the icon to start.

If you have the PC version, you already have the Mac version on the same CD. So, it's the Mac version for me.

This is an interesting adventure in the "old style" of the classics and works pretty well with the FMV portions of the game. (Disappointingly, the "Full-Motion-Video isn't really "full". It's a window 1/4 the size of the whole screen). The acting seems decent and it apparently follows the Dracula mythos properly.

<Mac Disadvantages>
None really. Unless running a Mac emulator is hard for you.

<Mac Advantages> Easy start-up. Does everything it should with no fussing with Soundcard IRQ's or VESA. Seems to run a little smoother as well.
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Postby Snover » 2002-11-23 @ 19:41

Regarding the music --
Apple took out analogue synth in systems greater than 6. The game could be trying to use that. Solution? Executor. (Read the instructions on Cliff Johnson's page regarding that.)
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regarding Master of Orion Music...

Postby Nicht Sehr Gut » 2002-11-23 @ 20:01

Snover wrote:Regarding the music -- Apple took out analogue synth in systems greater than 6.
You confused the heck out of me until I figured you were referring to "Master of Orion". In any case, I'm doubting that's the cause as System 7 was originally released in 1991, and Master of Orion was released in 1994.

BTW, if someone wants to post a reply dealing with a specific game they might want to make a mention of it on the subject line as I plan to come back and "Alphabetize" the entries in this thread (and in the Mac Solution thread) so the games won't be in a random order.
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Lemmings?

Postby Targaff » 2002-11-29 @ 13:14

Just curious as to what your take on this is. From my (admittedly limited) use of Lemmings on a Mac, it had the clear advantage of looking much nicer - even the enhanced Windows version doesn't come close to either the Mac (or Amiga) versions, really - but the major disadvantage of not having sound in the full version (which was strange, because the "special" versions did).
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Lemmings

Postby Stiletto » 2002-12-02 @ 20:37

mm, that's a toughie - he'll have to compare both Lemmings (DOS) with Lemmings 95 (Windows) and the Mac version. Good luck, Nicht!
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Postby Nicht Sehr Gut » 2003-10-01 @ 20:49

Lemmings

(Almost a year later...)

An excellent port of the original Amiga "puzzle" game. When a port is made, there are two important questions that need to be answered; What should be changed? and What needs to stay the same?

Presage and Mark Tsai are to be congratulated on this port. What's great about it is that, at first glance, nothing was changed. Look closer and you'll see that all the graphics have been enhanced "just right". Much like Wolfenstein3D, the graphics look like enhanced versions of the originals, not "remakes". (Oddly enough, the lemmings on the banner on the title page appear to be identical).

Unlike the original PC version, the Mac graphics are very detailed. Unlike the Windows remake, it doesn't have the obnoxiously large "buttons" at the bottom of the screen (they eat up almost a third of the screen display) Also, the Windows remake is missing the "special" levels of the original. The "special" levels are based on other Psygnosis/DMA games and not to be missed (screenshot below is from the the "A BeastII of a Level" which is based on "Shadow of the
Beast II" game.

One possible issue is that I was unable to get sound effects or music running. It may be that my Mac copy is corrupted somehow (been in archival for a long while) or maybe it has a compatibility issue with Basilisk... I'm thinking the former since the 1992 "XMas Lemmings" ported by the same team, works fine.

Even then, the Mac version uses MIDI music instead of the original MOD format, so it probably only adequate.

The 640x400 resolution graphics are it's greatest strength (any higher resolution is just empty black space).

<Mac Disadvantages>
May have audio compatibility problem (needs further testing). Uses MIDI instead of MOD music.

<Mac Advantages> Easy start-up. Does everything it should with no fussing with Soundcard IRQ's etc... Runs smoothly, graphics are excellent.
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