“Good Old Games” is about to go beta.

It seems there’s never enough time or money to play every great game that is released. There’s plenty of titles that have sat on my Amazon Wish List until they were no longer available so I never got around to playing them. If you’re like me and prefer to buy your games rather than just download them off of Bittorrent then you may be interested in a new service called Good Old Games. They make available the best games of the past at affordable prices and, best of all, NO DRM. From their website:

1. We’ve got games your 10-year-old won’t be better at.

GOG.com offers you critically acclaimed games from major publishers in every genre. Don’t let your kids mock the graphics; remind them that the classics never go out of style, unlike their totally wicked haircut.

2. So you’re cheap. It’s okay – we are, too.

We sell games for $5.99 and $9.99. For less than the cost of a lunch at some lousy diner you can own some of the greatest games of all time. No matter how big the file is and how successful the game was, you’ll leave the table satisfied that you got a great deal for your money. As an added bonus, our house specialities won’t make you sick.

3. You buy it, you keep it.

Don’t let your DRMs turn into nightmares (clever, eh?). You won’t find any intrusive copy protection in our games; we hate draconian DRM schemes just as much as you do, so at GOG.com you don’t just buy the game, you actually own it. Once you download a game, you can install it on any PC and even re-download it whenever you want, as many times as you need, and you can play it without an internet connection.

4. All games are Vista and XP compatible.

Thanks to our handsome programming team, the classics are now Windows Vista and Windows XP compatible. Now you can use your lightning-fast PC to unleash the full potential of those games you just couldn’t play properly on that busted old 386.

5. Extend the experience with tons of cool and exclusive add-ons.

Buying the game is just the beginning. With a purchase of any game at GOG.com you’ll also get some great additional materials for free, including game guides, walkthroughs, wallpapers and more. No joke.

6. We’re bringing together classic games and a classy community.

Dive into the GOG.com community, share your love for the games and meet other gamers with the same passion for the Good Old Games as you. Rate and review every single game, discuss your favorite titles on message boards, get support for your games and help others. Who knows, maybe you’ll find that special someone.

7. It’s so easy, your gramma’s probably already playing.

GOG.com is so easy to use. Just a few clicks will get you on your way to playing some of the best PC games of all time.

  • easy account setup
  • simple, fast and hassle-free downloads
  • game installers as user-friendly as can be
  • DRM-free games make it easy to re-download, install on any computer or even back them up on a CD.

Early Access Beta is Coming! Beware.

On Monday, September 8, anyone who signed up for the GOG.com beta will start receiving access keys to the site. We’re saying goodbye to the press beta and gearing up for the next phase: Early Access Beta. Everyone who signs up at http://www.gog.com before Sunday September 7 at midnight (EDT), during the next week will receive an access key, which will allow them to dive into the GOG.com site. If you don’t receive your access key on Monday, don’t worry as we’re sending them out in stages. The Early Access Beta will offer all the main features of the site, including buying DRM-free games, joining the community and writing reviews. Apart from just getting access, everyone buys a game from GOG.com during the Early Access Beta will receive a bonus code to get one game from GOG.com’s Interplay catalogue for free! So what are you waiting for? If you haven’t signed up yet, be sure to enter your email address and get in on the action.

Yep, I’m basically giving them some free advertising, but I think it’s a cool idea and I’m hoping it’s a success. I’ve never gotten around to playing the original two Fallout games and I keep hearing about how awesome they are so this is a chance to go back and try them out. They had a short interview with Shacknews on what they’re shooting for:

Shack:  If there’s isn’t any copy protection, aren’t you concerned about piracy? How do you ensure this will be a profitable and long-lasting enterprise?

Tom Ohle: Realistically, it’s probably out of our hands. What we wanted to do is kind of, provide that unique value in terms of—it’s something that other competitors don’t offer. Separate just from the games catalog itself, every other digital distribution platform basically requires some kind of online authentication, some sort of copy protection in there.

For us, it’s basically log into your account and download any game [you’ve bought], any time. The concern about piracy is something that we’ve gotten from publishers, who kinda go, “We’ll give you these games, you sell them, and then they’ll just be out on torrents immediately.”

We’re hoping that with the low price point—we’re also adding a bunch of added value features. For some of the key games, we’re gonna have really in-depth game guides. And just trying to have that low price point, plus the no DRM, sort of working on a bit of an honor system.

The gamers that we’re targeting are going to end up being a more mature audience anyways, because they’re these hardcore, old-school PC gamers. For $5.99 or $9.99, it’s pretty cheap. Hopefully people won’t be too tempted to copy it and give it to their buddies, because it’s pretty cheap. And hopefully the more sales we get, obviously, the more likely we are to bring on additional publishers and different titles. If everyone’s pirating games right off the bat, then I guess we’d be in a bit of trouble.

It’s likely they’d be pirated even if they had DRM on them (Spore comes to mind), but with the price being so low and the titles being older perhaps it’ll be less of a temptation. Either way it sounds like a good opportunity to catch up on titles you’ve missed along the way.

15 thoughts on ““Good Old Games” is about to go beta.

  1. XCOM are theey doing XCOM, THE FINEST GAME EVER.

    I spent way too much time playing this.

    There was a rerelease of UFO/TFTD/Apocalypse that ran on NT4. Now I’m out of sorts because I can’t find the CD.

    By the way, ever heard of UFO: Alien Invasion?

  2. Found it! XCOM Collector Edition. It’s released for 95/98, but I know it ran on NT4. Doesn’t seem to run on XP, but it’s worth building a VM for it.

  3. I spent way too much time playing this.

    I knew you lot had at least one redeeming feature. LOL Apparently you can get it to work through DOSBox download (alledgedly designed for this sort of thing), but I can’t seem to ‘set’ it correctly.

    I’m running a wargame campaign loosely based on XCOM:EU (First Tuesday every month, beer provision negotiated).  My mate not really into computer games, so its fresh to him.  Last Mission I introduced a Terror Site (Moscow, at the suggestion of someone at work).  Luckily for U.N.I.T. (I said use anything you like, he picked men suspiciously 1970s British) I forgot when Chryssalids infected zombies, killed zombies hatched further Chrysalids (I introduce a new alien or weapon each scenario- the GW Tyranids were this weeks).

    Did you ever ‘Recon by Fire’ There is something in the building- blow up the building walls until you can see in- its safer than entering!

  4. I know about DOSBox, but I’ve never used it.

    I’m trying to remember when I last played the game. I know that I ran it on NT4; I think I ran it on Win2K, too. Perhaps it’d be fine with some compatibility tweaks.

    I used to hex-edit the game files so that none of the rifles or pistols needed ammo, which means that you can take your time to punch holes where none were intended.

    Ah, the terror missions. Between the creepy music and nasty critters popping out when least convenient, it was quite a thrill.

    Damn, I’ll go and set up a VM to play again. Later.

  5. Compatibility mode did squat. I found a FAQ concerning the video issues, but none of the proposed remedies that I cared to try did work.

    I couldn’t bring myself to resurrect M$DOS, but I did try FreeDOS and the DOS installer promptly croaks. Anyway, I now remember why I was glad to forget about DOS…

    In the end, I dug up an old Thinkpad 560E running 98 and XCOM CE is happy on it.

  6. One more XCOM post…

    Other than the open-source UFO:AI, there’s a couple more links I stumbled upon.

    For Internet and hotseat multi-player, there’s the open-source UFO 2000. It can optionally use the original data files.

    You can get the original XCOM games from Steam as of a week or two ago. No clue what OS they’ll run on. I’ve never used Steam, but my understanding is that they use some kind of DRM.

  7. Yeah, my beta key was in my email this morning too. 35 games ain’t a bad start. Hopefully they do well enough to keep growing.

  8. Problem solved. I picked up a couple of games—not that there’s the slightest chance I’ll actually finish any of them.

    The games install and run in XP. Next I’ll try wine of Linux.

    I hope they get enough sales to convince other publishers to come aboard.

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