Gaming Nostalgia

Where I take a trip down memory lane
Published on Saturday, 30 December 2023

Rounding off the year

The blog has been alive for a year... Awesome!

To round off the year, I figured I'd take a stroll down memory lane and remember all of the games I played on my PC when I was a kid back in the '90s and later.

I haven't gotten myself a SteamDeck yet, but once I finally pick one up, I'll be replaying most of these. There are just so many good memories!

I'll try to do this in the order that I learned about the games as far as possible. The list is not at all exhaustive. I've played a lot of games! But these are the ones I remember most fondly.

when I was a kid, it was jot yet common for a family to own a PC, and the internet wasn't really a thing that existed for the masses, so discovering ganes was hard. it was through word of mouth and from whatever floppy disks were found on the shelves of the shops, and of course from demo software on CDs from the PC magazine 😎

Scorched Earth

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my cousin had bought a PC and he had a handful of games installed that we used to play when visiting him.

most prominently was Scorched Earth. we played that a lot!

Tank Wars

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His PC also had some version of Tank Wars. I dont remember which one we played the most.

Commander Keen

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I'm sure any DOS gamer will remember Commander Keen! I played Keen 1, 2, 3, 4, and Keen in Dreams. But it was definitely Keen 4 that saw most hours invested. great game 👍


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We played Worms and Worms 2, but once we learned about Liero, we didn't really look back. Instead of turn-based and time-based, it was simultaneous action.

and once we fiddled with the game settings and set "reloading time" to 0; things got really crazy very fast 😅


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If memory serves, Abuse was the first title where I actually had to use the mouse when playing. Up until this point, all games were keyboard only. Even good ol' Doom was keyboard only. I remember trying the first first-person shooter I tried that actually used a mouse; was Quake.

Cosmo's Cosmic Adventure

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I don't remember much about this game, except it was a platformer with a unique art style, and a main character that was a weird frog-like humanoid ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Crystal Caves

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Same as above. another platformer thingy, that we used to play. not much to say here.


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This one was fun. I don't actually remember much about the campaign experience, because it came with a level editor, which was really easy to use, so my brothers and I used to take turns creating crazy levels for the others to beat. It was awesome!

Alien Carnage

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My first experience with Zombie (alien?!) blasting. A lot of over-the-top weapons in here. My first game where I got to whip out a flamethrower 🔥

Vinyl Godess from Mars

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This was a title I actually played a lot! we ended up buying my cousins PC off of him and mostly played what was already on there and what we could pick up for free. But this title was the first actual PC game that my parents got for me as a birthday gift.

I recall it came as four floppy disks in some crazy color (green or yellow, I think) in a plastic sleeve with a small info pamphlet.

I have no clue where they were able to buy something like that, but I was able to pop in the Disk A and got started, and it was really cool!

The Catacombs: Abyss

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Played a lot of this one, mostly because it was one of the games that came on a CD we got for free with "100 games".

It was mostly short demos on there, but this one qas a full title and provided a lot of challenge moving through the levels.


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Some family friends had this title and had bought a Joystick to control it. They were awesome at it, and it turned out we had a demo of this game on the "100 games" CD.

We didn't have a Joystick though, and the keyboard controls were tricky (thrust, pitch, yaw, roll each had left/right keys 😳), so it took a while to master

Descent 2

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More or less the same as the prequel but with more fancy weaponry.

Raptor: Call of the Shadows

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The second PC game I got as a gift! You'd earn funds and upgrade your ship between levels and build an arsenal of fancy missiles. It was pretty cool. It even has a cutscene or the jet crashing every time you'd fail a level. Saw that a lot 😂

Grand Theft Auto

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The first GTA game. This and the sequel were both top-down shooters. Not until GTA3 did we get an FPS.

Anyway, I clearly recall spending hours on this game having a lot of fun, but never finishing it, because:

  • I did not understand English, so I didn't understand the missions
  • There was no indicator to tell you where to go. You'd have to memorize the area names in the city
  • No minimap!
  • Saving your progress could only be done by finding the church somewhere in the city and paying a donation of 50k.

Any time I'd make any progress, I'd die before finding the church; or I didn't have enough funds. Pretty awful game mechanic, which they kept around for GTA2 as well 🙄

Theme Hospital

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This and Roller Coaster Tycoon 3 was a blast!

Jazz Jack Rabbit

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Played this a ton when visiting one of my buddies.

Jazz Jack Rabbit 2

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Played this with my buddy when visiting. Loved the multiplayer and playing as Spaz 😊❤️

Might and Magic 8: Day of the Destroyer

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Not knowing English was a problem on this one, but I remember making about filling the spell book with all of the spells we could pick up and challenging every living creature we could find. Was awesome!

Tyrian 2000

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Same genre as Raptor above, but cooler levels, artwork and weaponry. AND, it had multiplayer, so played a ton with my buddy!

Total Annihilation

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First FPS. No unit cap. just huge robot wars. and destroyed units left behind wreckage that remaining units would have to move around. was a huge mess, but a fantastic experience.

I particularly liked having the maik robot Commander in control of construction and leading units into combat. Very unique setup that I haven't seen since.

Warlords Battlecry

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Similar to Total Annihilation in the way that this was an RTS where you didn't simply have a bunch of units (like Age of Empires), but you had a hero that would level up and earn traits and spells throughout a campaign. This was pretty cool for character building. Also, after each battle, some of the units that had earned most experience and survived; could be added to the roster of units that could be kept and used for subsequent battles.

I remember getting both a Dragon and Minotaur King to keep between battles and they eventually reached max level, and were so powerful that I didn't need many other units. a little game-breaking, but a lot of fun 😝


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I had finally learned enough English to read my way through quests. Arcanum was a fantastic game for me. Took a while to get used to the stat building and actually produce an avatar that could actually fight as well as earn trust of NOCs so I could progress.

I remember this as a game with a deep storyline with a lot of freedom to explore. The main quest invited creative solutions and played with the alignment between good and evil.

Most interestingly, the premise of the game world was that magic was set against technology, so the two would cancel each other out. Your character wouldn't be of any use if it tried to wield a pistol along with spells.

This played out great in the way that the tech-y dwarves would stick to mineral rich mountains and elves would hide in mystical forests; and the two races would hate each other.

Oh, and then the world's richest man was named Gilbert Bates; which I thought was funny. I'm guessing the writers were referencing Bill Gates here.


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Castle building, knights, siege weapons, producing own resources and taxing the citizens while managing your city's popularity. Just an absolutely phenomenal game!

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