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Help gaming on a Windows 98 machine

Postby Ronin » Thu Feb 11, 2016 9:29 pm

Ok, so my youngest son manages to 'collect' old electronics. He used to have a nice rotary phone collection. He think's retro is cool and some how he got his hands on a complete windows 98 setup including monitor, keyboard, mouse & speakers.
FortunatelyI had saved all of the demo CDs that used to come with PC Gamer magazine. I think my oldest dates back to 1998 & I must have 50 of them. He's playing the first level of the original Half Life but wants the whole game.

Here are our problems. We burned a CD of Simcity 2000 on my PC but couldn't get it to work. We couldn't get any USB thumb drives to be recognized. He asked me to hook it up to our network but noticed that the LAN ports 'looked odd'
I had to explain what a modem was.

Any thoughts on getting content on to this computer? Any thoughts on getting it hooked to the network? Any thoughts how Ronin manages to get himself into these weird computing situations? Thanks.
After seeing and hearing about the amazing rigs that many people have on these forums; it seems rather silly for me to the specs of my very modest gaming PC. It works and that's good enough for me.

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Re: Help gaming on a Windows 98 machine

Postby gregorov_14 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 2:24 pm

I remember using Windows 98 SE way back when, but only had dial-up networking for that particular computer. From what I remember, Windows 98 doesn't have the automatic driver install when you plug something in, but rather, you need to install the driver and the plug it in (I think you can have it plugged in as well when installing it). Using the burned CD with driver files on it is likely the easiest way to get files installed if you can't get the USB flash drive working right away.

Best bet is to use google to solve the problems. For example - USB drivers are found via this quick search.

http://www.technical-assistance.co.uk/kb/usbmsd98.php

For installing games, you should be good by simply installing the game from the CD it came with. Then you can try to install patches if they exist (and if you want them). Not too sure why Sim City 2000 wouldn't work, but I'm not too sure how legit the copy is (not that it matters as I believe Origin gave the game away for free at one point in time).

Now all this nostalgia makes me almost want to try and play Tomb Raider: The Lost Artifact. No idea if it will even work for Windows 10, as it had issues working on Windows XP.
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Re: Help gaming on a Windows 98 machine

Postby jacobvandy » Fri Feb 12, 2016 3:08 pm

It's likely that the CD player is old enough to be incompatible with your average burned disc, so getting the USB to work is your best bet, I think. Unless you can dig up an old ethernet card with driver disc to hook it up to your network... Does it have a floppy drive? :P
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Re: Help gaming on a Windows 98 machine

Postby gregorov_14 » Sat Feb 13, 2016 2:37 am

Looks like there was no special configuration beyond enabling Windows XP compatibility mode to get Tomb Raider: The Lost Artifact on Windows 10. It sort of worked without compatibility, except saving the game wasn't working. The only trouble now is that the controls are awful and the Xbox one controller doesn't completely work. I do have another controller that could work, but I haven't tried it yet. Maybe I will later, but yay for nostalgia.

Next step might be making the cd a virtual drive as the game needs to actually load stuff from it, so there's a giant pause when that load comes.
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Re: Help gaming on a Windows 98 machine

Postby ZeroGuardian » Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:12 pm

I know just what your going through Ronin. I've got an old Dual Processor P3 system (yes two separate CPUs on the same motherboard) that I run Win 98 SE and Win 2000 on for my old school gaming rig. Even have one of those old MIDI joysticks from Logitech for it. :)

Anyways, hit me up via a pm. Maybe we can find a time were I can talk you through it either via Mumble or over the phone.
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Re: Help gaming on a Windows 98 machine

Postby Ronin » Sat Feb 13, 2016 1:26 pm

Thanks everyone so much for the input. This is a terrific start. We'll be working on it Saturday afternoon and using our advice I'll see what we can get working. It does have a 3.5" floppy drive but I don't think I have any other floppy drive in my house that's working so wouldn't be able to get anything to it anyway.

If worse comes to worse he can play the first level of just about every game from 1998 to 2003!
After seeing and hearing about the amazing rigs that many people have on these forums; it seems rather silly for me to the specs of my very modest gaming PC. It works and that's good enough for me.

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