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First post, by oneirotekt

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There seem to be a lot of threads on the DOSBox forums about performance... which games run at acceptable speeds, which require at least a certain number of cycles / frameskip, etc.

I realize these factors are going to be subjective depending on machine configurations, as well as personal preference regarding what is "playable" and what is a slideshow, but I thought this would be a good place for people to post what games are playable in DOSBox on their systems, along with system specs and settings needed.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but CPU speed seems to be far and away the determining factor when it comes to how many cycles DOSBox can emulate effectively. So you needn't post the amount of system RAM, your video card, etc... just CPU type and clock speed should be fine.

I think the primary utility of this thread would be to have a handy list of games that run on CPU X, so that when a newbie complains about their machine not being able to run something like Crusader: No Remorse, we can point them to this thread and say "well, only people with 3.2GHz P4s have reported it to run acceptably". It would also be handy for people looking to upgrade, wondering how much horsepower they'd need to buy if they want to play Game Y.

DOSBox runs almost every game I can throw at it now, it seems like the major hurdle to be cleared is a horsepower one rather than a compatibility one. Some day machines will be fast enough to run anything you can run in DOSBox at full speed. Let's track the progress towards that goal here.

Some examples to get us started:

(dynamic core unless otherwise listed)

My machine: 1.2GHz AMD Thunderbird

- X-COM: UFO Defense runs well at 9000 cycles / frameskip 2.
- Wolfenstein 3D is just barely playable at 10000 cycles / frameskip 2, but sound stutters and framerate suffers a bit with lots of objects and enemies on screen.
- Doom 1 is surprisingly playable at 14000 cycles / frameskip 2, with full screen size and high detail (in game settings)
- X-Wing is baaarely playable at 10000 cycles / frameskip 2, with all in-game options turned down (SLOW speed, starship markings and engine glow off, detail sliders at zero)

Reply 3 of 13, by Freddo

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Yeah. Although it would be nice to see how many cycles that are needed to make a game "playable". But then, that's kinda hard to tell since "playable" differs from people to people.

Reply 4 of 13, by DosFreak

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Perhaps a feature included in DosBox which logs cycles over a certain length of time?

Say Dosbox monitors for when a program is loaded, then tracks cycles over say a 10 minute period of time until the executable quites?

If the person can play it for 10 minutes straight without much modification to cycles then it is "playable" could be not perfect...but playable.

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Reply 9 of 13, by oneirotekt

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avatar_58 wrote:

I have an AMD FX-53 system w/ 2.4 ghz and I run my games with 34000 cycles. Practically everything I want will run great! Though...I need to use a frontend to lower cycles for sierra games that will run too fast with those cycles.

So what's the most recent (year-wise) or most demanding game you can run with that CPU?

Reply 10 of 13, by mirekluza

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@avatar_58: What about BLOOD on your configuration? This is the game which is quite demanding, on my Athlon 1Ghz it runs in DOSBOX rather slow even with the lowest resolution. And it is not stable with the dynamic core (so normal core must be used).

I am just curious about performance, I know that if I wanted to play Blood (though I do not want 😀 ), there are better options than DOSBOX.


Reply 11 of 13, by avatar_58

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Curiously enough I never tried Blood as of yet. I've heard there are non-dosbox ways of making it run though..

I HAVE tried shadow warrior and it *does* work. I have to play it under the low rez mode (no vesa) with no dynamic core (it crashes on startup). No dynamic means lower cycles too. In all, its nothing to shake a stick at...I'd much rather play Duke3d with Jonof's win32 opengl port. Hopefully he'll one day add shadow/blood support hm? 😎

Newest game? You mean at perfect speed? I'm not sure...haven't really stressed it out yet. I'm just glad all my sierra games (including higher ones like Larry7) work perfectly. OMF runs great too! 😁

Maybe I'll try some "newer" games later and see how they fare. Btw, when win64 hits I'd love to see dosbox have a 64 bit version. Then it would be great to watch performance!

Reply 12 of 13, by Alexsource

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Amd duron 1200+@850 Mhz
Hioctane is slow but kinda playable at 6k cycles (upping cycles beyond this results in jerky music & sound, and then starts to run slower) setting all quality settings to the minimun. Also, i'm using dos/32a for this one 😉
Super street fighter 2 turbo works perfect at 6k too. It takes a bit to load stages tough. Upping cycles only lowers loading time, everything else gets jerky and/or slow.

chronos.jpg motoakira.jpg

Reply 13 of 13, by old_school_dude

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dosbox full defalt settings version 0.63 just launch and run =
amd k7 xp "barton core " 3200+ (2200 mgz) = dosbox 486 dx\2 50 mgz
amd k7 tburd 1000 mgz = dosbox 386 sx 25 mgz
pentium 2 450 mgz \amd k62 550 mgz = pre 286 land

quake in softwere mode on a 486 dx 2\50 mgz is probley not a good idea hell doom2 gana suck some 😉