Catching up on recent episodes:
ScummVM (writing as I watch):
SCUMM is the engine that LucasArts used for most of their adventure games (yes, including Full Throttle), just as AGI and SCI were Sierra's. ScummVM started out supporting only SCUMM games, but has added support for other engines (including the Sierra ones) along the way.
I like the EGA undithering as well, although I got the impression from their forums that it was a bit controversial (or at least the person who added it was controversial).
ScummVM really is available for almost every system you can think of, thanks to the fact that it uses SDL as its low-level graphics/sound/input SDK. I've used it on Windows, Linux, GP2x Wiz and iOS, and could make use of it on Android and Wii as well if I wanted to. I really need to dig into writing games using SDL, as it's a widely-used cross-platform API, and I haven't really tried writing any game stuff since the late '90s (using Allegro when it was still mostly a DOS SDK) - well, unless you count porting and/or tweaking various projects (like porting Abuse to the Wii).
I got a USB joystick for xmas, and immediately started playing all the space sims I had been avoiding due to my lack of said joystick. I wish your Wing Commander video came a couple months sooner, as I made the exact mistake you showed of ramming into the Tiger Claw while trying to dock with it!
You should really get Munt Reloaded working and play Wing Commander with MT-32 emulation. I couldn't believe how messed up the OPL music sounded in your video compared to the MT-32 soundtrack. Even the sound effects were wrong.
I really dislike the use of sprites to create a pseudo-3D effect in space combat games. I much prefer the shaded polygon approach of X-Wing and such. I can't decide if my problem is with the terrible way sprites tend to look when scaled without filtering, or if it's the unconvincing motion effect that results from having to use a limited number of camera angles to keep the number of sprites per object down to a reasonable level.
Betrayal at Krondor:
Sierra actually gave it away for free on their web site at one point, but only for a limited time and without redistribution permissions. This created a lot of confusion as to the legal status of the game, but technically it wasn't free except to those who had downloaded it directly. It's good to see that GOG.com has picked it up, although possibly a bit of a shame that they only peddle the CD version, as it has a great MT-32 soundtrack (but frustratingly also good Sound Blaster digitized effects that won't play in MT-32 mode, so maybe the CD version is the best tradeoff after all).
I loved this game back in the 1990s, but unfortunately never finished it because of a game-breaking bug in one of the later chapters. I didn't know until later that Sierra had mistakenly neglected to pre-install the latest patch in the "free" version. This has been on my "revisit" list for a long time, but I've not managed to do so yet.
The music is one of my favorite things about B@K. In fact, I was the one who supplied saved games and suggested song names (which seem to have propagated widely across the 'net!) to Tom Lewandowski of Quest Studios back in the '90s so that he could make his famous MIDI recordings.
The graphics engine was also rather unique at the time, however, for being adapted from Dynamix' famous flight simulator engines.
I played this before ever hearing of the books, but later found that college friends and later my wife were fans of the books. I read the first few and should probably revisit the series at some point; I'm not the biggest fan of medieval fantasy, but they were page-turners!
Betrayal at Antara was billed as a sequel, but was really only related in that it used the same engine. I think Sierra/Dynamix were trying to shamelessly capitalize on the good reviews of B@K. I've never played it myself, and I think it has largely been forgotten.
They did make a true sequel, but it was Windows-only and made in that horrible period where 3D characters populated pre-drawn 2D backgrounds, resulting in annoying "camera" angles. I didn't make it all that far into the game, as it just didn't feel as epic as the first one (plus I'm OCD about playing sequels before finishing the previous games in a series).