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Best CGA & Hercules games

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Reply 120 of 126, by StefanGagne

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Wow. I mean... wow.

I found this thread randomly googling for good CGA games and wow, this forum is so far up my alley I should be charging rent! Thanks for the great game suggestions, everyone!

Are there any you’d recommend for excellent CGA artwork, specifically? Not down sampled from EGA pr ported from another system, but designed originally for CGA? I got a hankering for the light blue and magenta paradise of the 80s.

Reply 121 of 126, by OldCat

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StefanGagne wrote on 2020-07-25, 22:53:

Wow. I mean... wow.

I found this thread randomly googling for good CGA games and wow, this forum is so far up my alley I should be charging rent! Thanks for the great game suggestions, everyone!

Thanks for the kind words!

StefanGagne wrote on 2020-07-25, 22:53:

Are there any you’d recommend for excellent CGA artwork, specifically? Not down sampled from EGA pr ported from another system, but designed originally for CGA? I got a hankering for the light blue and magenta paradise of the 80s.

I am not sure, CGA is not my area of expertise (that's why I started this thead, among other things), but I would first check this video to understand more about it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=niKblgZupOc Then I would check if I have composite output on my card - if so, I would give 8088 Corruption and 8088 Domnation demos a try and then proceed to check early “Ultima“ games, Ancient Art of War, Bard’s Tale, Maniac Mansion and Battle Chess, then Paku Paku and MagiDuck. If not and/or it's really cyan and magenta that you are after, then I would probably try Karateka by Jordan Mechner, Manhattan Dealers and other Silmarils games (Colorado, Starblade, Targhan, Metal Mutant, Crystals of Arborea), Mach 3, Life & Death, Electro Body (also know as Electroman), Heartlight PC and Robbo. As a cherry on the cake, I would try some modern PC games with faux-retro aesthetic and CGA palette: You Have To Win The Game (free), Homesickened (free), Retro City Rampage DX (not free, but usually fairly cheap). I would also check CGA Jam results on Itch, organised by Kronbits - most games are fairly simple and short, but cyan & magenta feature a lot.

I hope this helps.

Reply 122 of 126, by OldCat

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cybrasty wrote on 2020-07-14, 02:29:

Love the small form factor of the Tandon - wish those were more common, because I would love to grab one of those somewhere down the line. Was that a Point of Sale, or an industrial computer? You seldom see PCs with those specs in such small form factor.

I'm not really sure, but I think it was equivalent of these small business PCs that you see in every corporation.

cybrasty wrote on 2020-07-14, 02:29:

I was already looking at the T3100 after researching laptops with an amber screens. They get pretty pricey on ebay, but I will keep looking. How is the plasma screen compared to the CRT? Does it have a similar "glow"?

It is slightly different than a CRT, more like LCD with quick response time, but you can still see the dots that make up the screen.

cybrasty wrote on 2020-07-14, 02:29:

Also, got your PM - can't respond as I am too new on the forum to have PM privileges, but you guessed right; I am originally from Poland, although I live in US now.

No worries! I would suggest where to buy T3100 is Poland, but in US you have got all the trift stores, goodwill, FB marketplace and Craigslist - you'll be able to get one infinitely faster than here.

Reply 123 of 126, by pan069

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The first game I ever bought was called Storm. At the time we had an Olivetti M24 at home. So I played in CGA. You had to boot the machine from the game disk and you couldn't read the disk if you just booted into DOS. Some sort of copy protection:

storm_6.png

Storm: https://www.myabandonware.com/game/storm-96

Another game I purchased was called Arac. Again, played this in CGA on the M24:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arac_(video_game)

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And there was Shard of String, which I also purchased. I spend a lot of time in this game, again on the M24:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shard_of_Spring
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pGT4yD78e9g

Reply 124 of 126, by digger

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🤣, it baffles me how there has been a resurgence of nostalgia for those ugly and depressing 4-color CGA palettes. 😂 I remember resenting them on my Dad's M24, especially once I had visited a schoolmate in his home and seen Space Quest ][ in its full lush 16-color glory as we played it on his Dad's PC. Yes, that EGA PC had scanlines in 320x200 mode and the M24 in our home did not, but I gladly would have chosen 16 color graphics with scanlines over 4 color graphics without.

I guess it's the games that were designed for 16-color graphics that looked particularly bad in CGA mode if they even supported it, since the CGA mode was often an afterthought in such games, with some kind of dithering algorithm to get it working without requiring artists to redesign the graphics for it. I guess I would have done the same thing, had I been a game developer or publisher back in the day.

I guess games that were designed for CGA (or at least optimized for it) looked considerably better, but even in those games those colors got boring quite quickly. Digger, Alley Cat and Frogger come to mind. Even though the rapid background color switching trick in Frogger that effectively gave it 5 simultaneous colors was pretty neat, it didn't work properly on the M24, since that routine was hard-coded for 4.77MHz computers.

Reply 125 of 126, by konc

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That's true, games that were originally designed for cga do have their charm (if you have some kind of nostalgia about cga of course). Most games that were designed for EGA/VGA but also have a cga mode look like... I don't know, a cheap counterfeit. There are very few games that have original art for cga too, but they are the exception.

Reply 126 of 126, by digger

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konc wrote on 2020-07-27, 17:41:

That's true, games that were originally designed for cga do have their charm (if you have some kind of nostalgia about cga of course). Most games that were designed for EGA/VGA but also have a cga mode look like... I don't know, a cheap counterfeit. There are very few games that have original art for cga too, but they are the exception.

Indeed. Funny how we both picked a screenshot of a prominent "native" CGA game as our avatar, by the way. And each with a different palette too. 😉