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DOS Emulation Arrives For the Raspberry Pi

timothy posted 1 year,22 days | from the get-2-for-a-ddos-attack dept.

Emulation (Games) 189

An anonymous reader writes "Homebrew Coder Pate has released a DOS Emulator for the Raspberry Pi. Originally released for the Nintendo DS and Android, the emulator currently can emulate a CPU: 80486 processor, including the protected mode features (for running DOS4GW games) but without virtual memory support. The emulation runs at a speed around that of a 20MHz 80486 (which equals a 40MHz 80386) machine. It has support for Super VGA graphics, Soundblaster 2.0, Memory, USB keyboard and mouse. Perfect for playing old classics such as Doom, Duke Nukem 3D and Theme Park."

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189 comments

never understood the appeal (2)

Custard Horse (1527495) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280483)

Other than as a proof of concept is there any fundamental use for this facility?

Does anybody want to play Doom like it was 1993?

Re:never understood the appeal (3)

h4rr4r (612664) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280505)

People still play DOOM, I still play DOOM2 online every once in a while.

I have SCUMMVM installed on my smartphone so I can play games of similar vintage.

I guess it is something us older folks do. Kids these days, off my lawn, etc.

Re:never understood the appeal (1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280631)

Most people willing to play Doom today are doing so with ZDoom or Chocolate Doom, especially if they wish to do so online.

Re:never understood the appeal (3, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280673)

Yes, Most people are using some other DOOM engine with original WADs.

What do you mean willing? Is DOOM now a form of punishment?

Re:never understood the appeal (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281275)

While DOOM has a certain nostalgic appeal, it's missing some key features such as vertical aiming, and jumping which really add to the FPS experience. I really don't mind playing games from that era, but in certain genres we've moved way beyond where we were back then.

Re:never understood the appeal (1)

Agent ME (1411269) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281105)

More modern source port info: ZDoom has support for tons of mods. GZDoom is based off of ZDoom and adds OpenGL and 3d support (in level architecture and lighting mainly). Zandronum (formerly Skulltag) is based off of GZDoom and is excellent for online multiplayer (supporting very useful features like in-game joining). All are cross-platform, and each besides Zandronum/Skulltag are open source.

Re:never understood the appeal (5, Insightful)

acariquara (753971) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280509)

Other than as a proof of concept is there any fundamental use for this facility?

Does anybody want to play Doom like it was 1993?

Yes.

Re:never understood the appeal (1)

Joce640k (829181) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280671)

But not on something the speed of a 25MHz 486SX, right...?

Re:never understood the appeal (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280831)

The emulation runs at a speed around that of a 20MHz 80486 (which equals a 40MHz 80386) machine

And this... Not exactly. Emulation does not work that way (unless you get all the instructions cycle accurate). Using the norton tool SI he was using it does 2 things. It 'guesses' the cpu clock rate by running 1 instruction in a tight loop for a fixed time. It will use the 486 path timing because it detected it as a 486.

For example SI detected it as 53 MHZ. But the scale is about 1.2 between the 33 and the 53. It should be 64. The rating should be about 68 too.

He is getting about a 120% 386.

Still a cool thing. I am tempted to get it :)

Re:never understood the appeal (1)

Joce640k (829181) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280869)

He is getting about a 120% 386.

Still a cool thing. I am tempted to get it :)

Sooooo....approximately a 25MHz 486SX then?

Re:never understood the appeal (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281283)

hehe no.

486SX was exactly the same as the DX but disabled FPU. The cycle count was the same. The 386sx is where they halved the external speed by halving the bus bits. Most games of that era skipped using the FPU at all if they could. It was too iffy if the customer had them... Plus if you could get away with it int perf usually smoked the FPU perf by a good 10-20 cycles.

Still tempted :)

Re:never understood the appeal (3, Informative)

Hatta (162192) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281021)

What you really want is to just run DOOM v1.9 with the command line option '-timedemo demo3'. That will give you a pair of numbers that is easily converted into average FPS. There's even a nice list [tuwien.ac.at] of machines and their results in this benchmark.

You'll notice that performance is also dependent on the amount of cache available, and the type of video card. This is why it's hard to do simple CPU benchmarks and extrapolate that to game performance. A 100mhz 486 with an ISA video card performs worse than a 66mhz 486 with a VLB video card. How this relates to performance in emulation is anyones guess.

Re:never understood the appeal (4, Interesting)

Hatta (162192) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280717)

I'd rather play DOOM like it's 2008 [sourceforge.net]. Native, high res, 3D accelerated DOOM will be far nicer than emulated 320x240 at 25fps, which is what you'd expect from a 486. I'd like to see the output from doom -timedemo demo3 on this thing.

Re:never understood the appeal (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281161)

Just wait 'till you have old eyes & slow arthritic hands...:-)

Re:never understood the appeal (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280719)

for like 5 minutes...

otherwise, you're full of shit.

Re:never understood the appeal (1)

Mr Thinly Sliced (73041) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280545)

Can you imagine if you'd started playing doom and halfway through the game you had an accident and ended up with Anterograde Amnesia [wikipedia.org]?

The use of emulators would allow you to groundhog day that same level for the rest of your life with the same pleasure as if it was the first time around.

(Yes, I feel bad. At least I didn't make a forking dick joke.)

Re:never understood the appeal (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280555)

It was a wonderful year

Re:never understood the appeal (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280615)

Yes, a lot of people enjoy playing retro DOS games, especially LucasArts adventure games.

"A lot"? (0)

sjbe (173966) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280725)

Yes, a lot of people enjoy playing retro DOS games, especially LucasArts adventure games.

If your definition of "a lot" is a number less than 1000 then sure.

Nothing wrong with playing old DOS games or hacking hardware so you can do so but let's not pretend it is an activity with wide appeal shall we? Nostalgic geeks and old hardware are not new but not common either.

Re:"A lot"? (1)

jedidiah (1196) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280947)

Regardless of your dismissiveness, it is a scene that is self-sustaining. Nothing you do to try to engage in petty insults will change that really.

That's kind of the point of this whole article.

You naysayers are pretty irrelevant. This stuff will continue despite your attempts to be a big fat wet blanket.

Re:"A lot"? (4, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280985)

Yes, a lot of people enjoy playing retro DOS games, especially LucasArts adventure games.

If your definition of "a lot" is a number less than 1000 then sure.

With only 1000 users, gog.com could not exist. AFAICT old dos games represent most of their business.

Re:"A lot"? (1)

petermgreen (876956) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281609)

If we assume that games listed as "windows + mac" are dos games running in dosbox while those listed as "windows" are native windows games then it seems that 7 out of the 10 games in their top sellers list are windows games.

Re:"A lot"? (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280997)

Old adventure games, especially the LucasArts ones, have such humour in them that it's really hard to find equal games in 2013.

Re:"A lot"? (5, Informative)

RepoOne (1874548) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281005)

-VOGONS
-GoG
-4chan /vr/ (retro games)
-Abandonia

All active DOS gaming communities.

There are certainly more than 1000 people playing DOS games today.

Still a niche (0)

sjbe (173966) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281569)

There are certainly more than 1000 people playing DOS games today.

Fine. Make the number 10,000 or 30,000 and it still is a tiny little niche activity. I'm not sure I know a single person I interact with face-to-face who has even booted up DOS for recreational purposes in the last 10 years. Last time I personally booted a DOS machine was around 1997 or so.

Don't get me wrong, I think it is cool. It just isn't popular or common. As good as some of the games are, most of us moved on from them long ago.

Re:never understood the appeal (1)

Joce640k (829181) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280657)

Does anybody want to play Doom like it was 1993?

1993? It can't manage a 66MHz 486DX2....

Re:never understood the appeal (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281103)

The Pentium 60 came out in 1993.
The 486 DX/25 came out in 1989.

I suppose you could try Falcon 3.0 on it for a flat-shaded flight sim that looks like bad VRML.
There's not much interesting to do with something slower than 66Mhz.

Re:never understood the appeal (2)

drinkypoo (153816) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280685)

Other than as a proof of concept is there any fundamental use for this facility?
Does anybody want to play Doom like it was 1993?

It's really not primarily about games which have been remade and the remakes given away. Who is trying to emulate to play Star Control II any more, right? But there's lots of games which haven't been remade and yet somehow also haven't been superseded. You can find scads of them on gog.com, for very little money.

For my money I'd rather buy Playstation games and slap them into an emulator. My phone (Xperia Play, bought used because it was cheap) came with Crash Bandicoot and some clever folks figured out how to load other game images into that emulator, and most of them work, so I don't even have to pay extra to play my PSX games on my phone. Even if I pay for the emulator to cover the other games it's only about five bucks. But on the other hand, there's a load of turn-based DOS games out there very cheap, and they are often a good match for a handheld because they wait for you, so you can play them while your attention is divided.

Re:never understood the appeal (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280787)

Hmmmm... I would consider playing some of the old Wing commander titles again...

Re:never understood the appeal (1)

zome (546331) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280833)

I remember it was a lots more fun programming in turbo pascal than what I have been doing these days. Maybe it was because I was young and everything was nice and sweet, but if I had to write program for Pi, do it in pascal seems more inviting than in C.

I wish I still have my 'game' written in turbo pascal, I might just get myself a Pi just to run it.

Re:never understood the appeal (1)

jedidiah (1196) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280927)

There's plenty of following for classic games of all kinds.

This is why the entire emulator scene exists to begin with.

Sometimes, there's just no replacement for the original.

Re:never understood the appeal (3, Informative)

niko9 (315647) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281037)

Other than as a proof of concept is there any fundamental use for this facility?

Does anybody want to play Doom like it was 1993?

I can think of one: DHPOS Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DHPOS [wikipedia.org]

It would make one hell of a dirt cheap advanced POS for the small business owner. Especially those in developing countries. DHPOS website has people using this software all of the world where they can't afford expensive monthly support costs. Link: http://keyhut.com/pos.htm [keyhut.com]

With DOS and just DHPOS installed your employees can't mess with we browsing, etc.

DOSBox? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280503)

Can someone explain why you wouldn't be able to run DOSBox? Isn't this reinventing the wheel?

Re:DOSBox? (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280531)

Dosbox is not that fast, and it targets pretty generic ARM so I am almost certain this was done to get usable performance in a DOS emulator.

Re:DOSBox? (4, Interesting)

BobNET (119675) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280853)

There's patches out there for DOSBox's dynamic recompiler, but they're for ARMv4 and I'm not sure how effective they are on the Pi's processor. My unscientific measurements put it somewhere around a low-end 386: Doom runs but isn't playable, while EGA sidescrollers are almost perfect with the occasional stutter. I haven't tried Wolf3D yet, though.

(I should point out this is in X on SlackwareARM which is probably one of the worst environments one could use for this sort of thing.)

Re:DOSBox? (4, Informative)

DarkOx (621550) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280627)

DosBox works pretty well on ARM. It comes with lots of baggage though. You have X server and everything else sucking up the PI's limited memory (granted most Dos games and applications are probably expecting 16MB top to work with but...) It looks like this runs on the metal; so its probably faster.

If you don't need or want to do any multitasking and you want the very best retro-gaming experience this might be a nice choice. That said yes it a bit of a wheel re-advent; but so was DosBox, DosEMU existed for what a decade before it? Nothing wrong with having more options.

source ports of doom are better and don't have the (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280513)

source ports of doom are better and don't have the old dos limits

As if the Pi wasn't obsolete enough (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280519)

Let's run DOS on it!

Re:As if the Pi wasn't obsolete enough (1)

jones_supa (887896) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280769)

Many of us have played through the DOS classics a million times and could just grab a PC with DOSBox if we wanted to play any DOS games.

So my question is: where did the author find all the motivation to create this? It's not really a weekend project either.

Re:As if the Pi wasn't obsolete enough (2)

jedidiah (1196) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280981)

As a Unix user, I expect to be able to run any software I own on any microprocessor architecture I can manage to get my hands on. That's just the way that Unix is supposed to work.

If I get a PI, then I expect it to run all of my non-commercial software that has source code available for it.

Just comes with the territory.

mysql, apache, mate, firefox, slrn, mame, mythtv, gimp, sane, libreoffice, xbill... pretty much everything except my Loki and Steam games.

At least only one layer. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280541)

At least it's only one layer of emulation. I appreciate this a lot more than DOS emulator in javascript so that you can run your Nintendo emulator in an emulator in a virtual environment in a browser.
I prefer my number of wasted cycles to be in a reasonable amount.

Home of the Underdogs is your friend. (2)

F34nor (321515) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280561)

Like dungeon crawlers? Try Ultima Underworld!
Like Mass Effect? Try Starcontrol 2!
Like Sydicate? Try Sydicate!
Like BioShock? Try System Shock!

Re:Home of the Underdogs is your friend. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280785)

And GOG.com.

Re:Home of the Underdogs is your friend. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281017)

And vagina

Re:Home of the Underdogs is your friend. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280885)

Like Star Control 2? Play The Ur-Quan Masters!

Re:Home of the Underdogs is your friend. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281029)

Beat me to it. I'm no enemy of grey-area abandonware, but there's no reason to jump through hoops to play SC2 when UQM exists.

Re:Home of the Underdogs is your friend. (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281509)

Funny story: the first time I tried to get into Ur Quan Masters a long time ago, I gave up really fast...because I listened to the alien that said not to go near Earth.

Posting anonymously to hide my shame.

What about DosBOX ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280585)

Okay, this "now on the Raspberry Pi" craze is getting really ridiculous.
DosBOX runs well on it, it always had, even before the Raspbian. Same goes for an aweful lot of programs.

Re:What about DosBOX ? (3, Insightful)

jones_supa (887896) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280803)

Okay, this "now on the Raspberry Pi" craze is getting really ridiculous.

No, it isn't. Let's have it become a stable platform with a flourishing software and hardware ecosystem.

Re:What about DosBOX ? (2)

DarkOx (621550) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280913)

No, it isn't. Let's have it become a stable platform with a flourishing software and hardware ecosystem.

You can run all the popular Linux distributions on it; with a pretty full Desktop experience (all the packages are there performance is generally pretty good). So I think we are there.

The trouble is the ARM world is evolving pretty fast. The Raspberry Pi is so much faster than the Kirkwood based stuff that was filling the same niche spaces before it. I am really glad that $35 + a little extra for some storage and a power supply gets you a computer that is "good enough for most projects" that is great.

I don't want to see things get so tied to the RasPi that big FOSS projects get to tightly coupled to it. Because just like the Pi has replaced the Kirkwood stuffs; someone is going to put together an even more powerful, even more efficient just as cheap ARM SoC together sooner rather than later. I'd like to see the community benefit as greatly.

Re:What about DosBOX ? (-1, Flamebait)

drinkypoo (153816) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280943)

No, it isn't. Let's have it become a stable platform with a flourishing software and hardware ecosystem.

Let's have the Pi foundation give out the documentation needed to use all the hardware on the board, shall we? Oh, they can't because of Broadcom? Looks like something else will have to flourish. If they'd brought out the unit without the dodgy onboard ethernet, and got USB right, I'd be less critical of the lack of openness. But the device doesn't work right AND it's not particularly transparent. I regret my purchase.

Re:What about DosBOX ? (4, Insightful)

ctid (449118) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281061)

You can get a perfectly good little Linux running computer for $50 and you're whining about it? The Raspberry Pi Foundation was set up with the goal of getting more children to do programming at home and in school. That is their purpose. The board is as cheap as it is partly because Broadcom are supporting the initiative. I don't know what you mean by "the device doesn't work right". Of course it works right. Hundreds of thousands of people are using them.

Re:What about DosBOX ? (1)

bobbied (2522392) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281371)

Then how about you spin up a board that is better? Or better yet, get the NDA agreement with Broadcom in place so you can help fix the issues. It is easy to throw rocks at the dirty glass building, but it's harder to grab the glass cleaner and help fix the problem.

Where I don't exactly like the NDA requirements of Broadcom, it seems a reasonable compromise to meet the cost goals. I suspect that a lot of the issues you have with your Pi have work arounds or are being worked if they are known. I suspect that you could easily EBay your working Pi if you really want to get rid of it, and I'll bet it won't cost you all that much overall.

I think Pi has struck a pretty good balance between cost and functionality. I'd love to have more RAM, multiple cores and faster CPU clock, but you are simply not going to be able to do that for $35. The Pi is obviously *cheep* but mostly works, and given the cost constraints a rather good deal.

Gaming is cool and all, (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280653)

But a tiny machine running DOS coupled with a floppy is exactly what I need to make disk images for old musical equipment. I could use VM on my main machine, but I like the idea of having something that is dedicated to a function.

Re:Gaming is cool and all, (2)

Gordonjcp (186804) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280741)

My main desktop machine for poking about with sound is a Dell Optiplex 755 with a "laptop-style" floppy drive. The Intel floppy controller works really well for weirdass formats like the Ensoniq Mirage with its mixed sector lengths, and disks like the Roland S-series ones where the low-level format is "normal" but the filesystem is weird.

What old musical equipment do you need to create floppies for?

Re:Gaming is cool and all, (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280989)

Hey Gordon, I think I've listed some of the gear I've got on the CB.co.uk forum. Thanks for the "madman" comment on my last post!

But I've got 2 Roland S20's, an S760, a bunch of Akai S-2000's, S20's, an Ensoniq Mirage or two, and tons of other gear.

What do you mean perfect for Duke3d? (1)

Dishwasha (125561) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280727)

I remember LAN gaming Duke3d in my dorm on a 75Mhz 486 Toshiba laptop and my frame rates didn't always equal my compatriots who had faster Packard Bells and the like. I find it difficult to believe a 20Mhz 486 would have decently run Duke3d. Oh the other hand, maybe my frame glitches were due to the parallel port to Ethernet adapter I was using at the time...

Re:What do you mean perfect for Duke3d? (1)

DarkOx (621550) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280799)

It would probably run alright if you turned the detail down quite a bit a chose one of the smallest screen resolutions.

Duke 3d was generally a better experience on Pentium class hardware but if you had one of the later 486 machines it was almost as good. 486DX-50s and 486DX2-66s with 72 pin memory could pretty well keep up with the Pentiums.

I had friends with DX2-66s and I had both a DX-50 and DX-33 still using 30 pin SIMMs. You could play on the 33 with stuff turned way down; but it was un-playable with the defaults. The 50 handled the games default settings just fine. The folks with the 66 could notch the resolution up a little bit; as could the Pentium users.

Re:What do you mean perfect for Duke3d? (1)

FreonTrip (694097) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281417)

Seconding this - on less than a 50 MHz 486 with VLB video Duke Nukem 3D chugged badly. It ran pretty effortlessly on a friend's 133 MHz 486, as I recall, and on my Pentium 90 it was bearable at 640x480 when I used the SciTech Display Doctor.

Christ, that was a long time ago...

Re:What do you mean perfect for Duke3d? (1)

Bob the Super Hamste (1152367) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281565)

I mostly played duke 3d on my DX4-75 laptop with 36MB ram when I was in college and that rocked (and now I feel old). That machine also could manage Quake but it wasn't anything impressive and pretty low res. Before that it was duke 3d on a DX2-66 with 32MB ram and that was still pretty good.

Re:What do you mean perfect for Duke3d? (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281139)

Yea I played duke3d in my 486 dx2 66 with 8 megs of ram which was then upgraded to 24. Ran most stuff ok but it did have issues with some of the bigger levels(this came more into play on some of the custom levels people made). I just don't see it running well with what they claim for emulation.

20MHz 486 (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280759)

A 20Mhz 486 would suck for doom. It's playable, but just barely.. The minimum to reliably peg the 35hz ticrate and get a smooth experience would be a 486SX/2 50Mhz, preferably with 256kB of cache.

pretty cool (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43280763)

However, IIRC virtual memory support was practically essential for running serious apps on Intel chips in the early 1990s. There were some nasty hacks on both the DOS side and application side to enable that - a cottage industry of mezzanine-layer OS services companies sprang up that marketed "DOS extenders" to application developers, with names like Rational, PharLap, and QuarterDeck.

Re:pretty cool (1)

ledow (319597) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280905)

The only ones that I remember being ubiquitous were CWSDPMI and DOS/4GW, mainly because they came bundled with compilers of the time. The only other one I recognise the name of is GO32, but that's a CWSDPMI predecessor by the looks of it.

And DOS/4GW was indeed bundled into DOOM.

I think the claims of the capabilities are stretching it a bit in terms of sheer processor power, the features needed in the virtual machine it runs, and the amount of usefulness there would be in emulating games at pathetic rates that even your smartphone can out-do.

HORRIBLE for Doom or Duke (1)

Khyber (864651) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280767)

In fact, Duke needed minimum a 66MHz 486 (or was that Shadow Warrior?)

And you'd only be able to run DOOM in low-detail mode emulating a 20MHz 486, as a 33 MHz 386 could barely run it.

Re:HORRIBLE for Doom or Duke (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280901)

And you'd only be able to run DOOM in low-detail mode emulating a 20MHz 486, as a 33 MHz 386 could barely run it.

I could play Quake fluidly at 512x384 on my 33 MHz 486. Doom would run perfectly at normal res. Duke ran just fine at low res as well. You're full of crap.

Re:HORRIBLE for Doom or Duke (1)

sjwt (161428) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281053)

Or more to the point,
Its more likely he didn't optimise his Autoexec.bat and config.sys

I could usually clear a good 50-120K out of lower memory and tweak a few things around much better them memaker could..

Lots of old DOS tricks that I am sure I would have little to no chance of remembering these days..

Re:HORRIBLE for Doom or Duke (1)

ledow (319597) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281079)

Really?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KbcFvUOGA44 [youtube.com]

I doubt it. And Duke3D would be closer but still quite bad. Either you and I have different definitions of playable, or the OP isn't the one full of crap

Hell, you'd be lucky to do 320x240 in Quake with that processor, and the min spec was a Pentium (that was widely advertised at the time, had been out for three years, and was widely condemned as being a "high" system requirement for a game at the time).

I have seen Doom run on a 25Mhz 386. It *was* playable. I know, because that's the only machine I EVER played Doom on. I'll give you that one.

But Duke? No, not really. Sure, you could make Quake/Duke better if you had a Voodoo or similar card and the versions of the software that supported that, but the chances are you couldn't emulate that on a RPi any quicker either.

Re:HORRIBLE for Doom or Duke (1)

Bob the Super Hamste (1152367) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281619)

While the min spec for Quake was a Pentium it could run on a 486 DX4, I did it and while playable it wasn't what I would call a good experience. I didn't get my ass handed to me in death match but I was never very good because of the lag. At that time there seemed to be a number of pieces of software that was min speced for a Pentium that would run on a DX4 without issue. The CD burner I had claimed a similar thing but I never had problems with it on that DX4.

Re:HORRIBLE for Doom or Duke (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281237)

Duke3D ran like crude on my 486DX2 50 MHz system. After I set the bus speed from 25 to 33 MHZ, overclocking the chip to 66 MHz, it ran smooth as butter.

Re:HORRIBLE for Doom or Duke (1)

Hatta (162192) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281289)

You are misremembering. I benchmarked my 486 DX2/66 on DOOM just last year, and got about 28-25fps depending on configuration. And that falls in line with published benchmarks. At half the CPU speed, you're looking at 15FPS tops, which can't be described by anyone as "fluid".

And that's just talking about DOOM. Quake makes heavy use of the Pentium's FPU, so you'd get much worse performance on a 486, even if it were clocked the same as the pentium.

Re:HORRIBLE for Doom or Duke (0)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281475)

I could play Quake fluidly at 512x384 on my 33 MHz 486. Doom would run perfectly at normal res. Duke ran just fine at low res as well. You're full of crap.

Not without a good 3d card (i.e. Voodoo 2 PCI - released in 1998). I could only get 30 fps out of it at 640x480 with a 12MB Voodoo Rush on a P75 Packard Bell overclocked to 100Mhz w/16MB ram. That's at least 3 times faster than your 486.

Also, the DOS version was compiled for i586 and couldn't run on a 486. If you had the Linux executable, it'd work. In those days, you could boot Linux off a parallel port zip drive and floppy. 100MB was enough to do plenty.

Re:HORRIBLE for Doom or Duke (1)

scorp1us (235526) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281427)

Having had LAN parties that long ago. (yeap) I can say my 486DX2/66 was able to run Doom fine. However my friends's 486DX/33 was noticeably slower, around 15FPS. Castle Wolfenstien was doable on a '33 though.

OS/X? (1)

Phrogman (80473) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280849)

Does this mean it would run OS/X as well? I mean, I must have hung onto that stack of install floppies for a reason right? I just can't bring myself to throw it all away.... :P

Is this emulator better than dosbox? (1)

caseih (160668) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280883)

Dosbox, an emulation of both the 16-bit x86 chip and DOS, has been around for years and is aimed at running old games. Dosbox has been ported to just about everything under the sun in recent years including my phone.

How does this emulator differ from dosbox? Is it faster, better graphics or fidelity? One nice thing is that it appears to be able to run any version of DOS you want, whereas Dosbox has its own DOS-compatible OS built in. Can you run FreeDOS on it?

This is cool (1, Insightful)

sl4shd0rk (755837) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280887)

Not really so much that it's DOS, but just the innovation. The RPI has given people a platform to experiment, innovate and just have fun. It's refreshing to know there are people out there using their minds for things other than mass-media termination points.

yeeeeah (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | 1 year,22 days | (#43280973)

Theme Park and Jurrassic Park are seriously the best games ever made, lol. Oh and I believe the original Exile III from Spiderweb Software was also originally DOS so that's up there with them. It was like Skyrim with 16x16 2D characters but just as good of a quest structure and storyline.

Error. Poor genre selection. (1)

Immerman (2627577) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281025)

What's the deal with games = 3D shooters these days? Except for a few real gems (System Shock spring to mind) a shooter is a shooter, and modern hardware means modern games (mostly) have smoother frame rates and prettier graphics than their predecessors, while the gameplay remains mostly unchanged. Well, okay, I'll admit gameplay-oriented level design seemed to be far more creative in the old days before all that creative effort got redirected into making things pretty rather than interesting.

For my money the real value of emulation is the gems that have never really been surpassed and don't benefit dramatically from better graphics, and genres that have largely been abandoned. Shadow Magic was a lot prettier than Master of Magic, but focused on a far more tactical game completely lacking in grand strategy. Galactic Civilizations did a far better job of reinventing Master of Orion, but added so much detail that a casual afternoon of galactic conquest is hardly an option. Dungeon crawlers have all but disappeared, replaced by mindless hack-and-slashes like Diablo.

The real question (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281069)

Can it run the MS-DOS version of MAME? Has anyone tried to see if it can run games up to, say, 1990~1995 with a 30/60FPS framerate with at least 32kHz audio without hiccups?

Re:The real question (1)

FreonTrip (694097) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281469)

Um, wouldn't it make more sense to run an ARM port of MAME? I'm not sure anyone's still maintaining an MS-DOS port of MAME, and even if they were a low-end 486 wouldn't handle arcade games that were contemporary around the time of its heyday.

Killer App (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | 1 year,22 days | (#43281101)

I've been intending to buy one forever, but with this plugged into the TV and if my old Sierra Games floppies will read, this would be great fun for the kids. I've been avoiding introducing them to the FPS games, which IMO are boring and stupidifying.

Boycott Raspberry Pi (-1)

Anonymous Coward | 1 year,22 days | (#43281137)

Obviously they don't give a shit about libre software, if they allow someone to develop a clone of a closed-source, proprietary operating system originally developed by a backstabbing monopolist. It was bad enough that closed-source shitshow Minecraft was developed for the platform (so many libre alternatives to this game anyway that are way better).

If they allow this filth on their platform, then the RasPi foundation doesn't deserve your money.

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