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Good Old Games Coming (Back)

CD Projekt announces the preliminary launch of GOG.com, a marketplace for "Good Old Games." The site, which will go live in September, will offer its titular good old games will all necessary updates to install and run them on current computers (including Vista support), completely stripped of DRM, and all priced between $5.99 and $9.99. The site will enter closed beta testing in August, and visitors are being offered the opportunity to sign up for a chance to be a tester. There are Q&As about all of this with PR rep Tom Ohle on Shacknews and Gamasutra discussing, among other things, whether they are concerned with piracy of the DRM-free games. The site also has an image of game boxes illustrating the types of offerings they plan, showing Giants, Operation Flashpoint, TOCA Race Driver 3, Fallout 2, Freespace 2, MDK, Colin McRae 2005, and Fallout Tactics. Here's the announcement:

Warsaw, Poland – July 10, 2008. CD Projekt, best known in the Western world for its award-winning PC RPG, The Witcher, is proud to unveil its invention of time travel. The company sent several representatives to the past and they’ve returned with some amazing findings. Quick to capitalize on the incredible treasures of history, the company is pleased to reveal its newest project, GOG.com. The site, whose name is an acronym for Good Old Games, is a new games-on-demand platform that allows old fogies (and young fogies) to buy some of the best PC games of all time – many of which just can't be found in stores anymore – and play them on modern hardware, completely free of intrusive DRM. GOG.com is poised to become the center of the classic-games universe with a huge community section including forums, user reviews and ratings, as well as insightful commentary and editorials from some of the industry’s most beloved writers. A closed public beta of the site is scheduled for launch on August 1st, and excited old-school gamers can sign up for more info and a chance to enter the beta by visiting GOG.com.

The site makes it tremendously easy for gamers to buy, download and install some of their all-time favorite PC games. The games will be sold for $5.99 or $9.99, are guaranteed to work on Windows Vista and Windows XP systems and are available to download as many times as needed. This is very nice, yes? The DRM-free games, low prices, the site’s ease-of-use and the community are some of the main features that make Good Old Games something more than just another digital distribution outlet.

GOG.com has already lined up agreements with such publishers as Interplay and Codemasters to make their games available on the site. Among the titles those companies are bringing to the site are in-demand classics like Fallout, Freespace 2, Operation Flashpoint: Game of the Year Edition and TOCA Race Driver 3. Negotiations are in progress with several other publishers, with the ultimate goal of GOG.com offering a comprehensive collection of classic PC games from the 80s, 90s and 2000s.

“Our main goal is to create a user-friendly site with the best classic PC games for a price that might be considered impossible to achieve,” said Adam Oldakowski, Managing Director of GOG.com. “The people behind GOG.com are gamers and we all know how difficult it is to find a lot of classic games. So we’ve started building a great games catalogue, gotten rid of the copy protection that gamers hate so much, optimized the games to work on modern operating systems, and made them cheap enough that piracy seems like a rip-off. It’s so easy to buy, download and install a game and then get deeply involved in the community; we’re very confident that gamers will absolutely love the site.”

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31 Replies. 2 pages. Viewing page 1.
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31. Re: Dark Engine Jul 11, 2008, 09:58 nin
 
And while I hate to sound overly-dramatic over just an announcement, it occurs to me that this site is something most of us have only ever dreamed would happen. In today's market, the idea of anyone releasing classic games, DRM-free, that 'just work' on your modern PC is just extraordinary. If this project was to fail due to people not even being willing to fork out $6-10 for a classic game, who knows if we would ever get another opportunity like it?

Someone is actually doing this. I'd say it's time to jump on board with both feet, and make sure it's here to stay That goes even if the service turns out to be a bit lacking to begin with. Hopefully it will be fine, but in any case it's bound to improve with time -- just so long as the company is still around to improve it.

I just hope they can pull it off. I want it to be successful, but I feel slightly skeptical until I can see what they're going to do.

But make no mistake, my credit card is ready to go - Freespace? Fallout? (And, I hope) The Infinity Engine games? All in handy download packages and ready to run with current OSs with no tweaking? I'm down for that!

And if they can get other publishers to jump on board (Sierra, Lucasarts, etc)? It'll be amazing. Sierra rereleased most of their Quest games in boxes again last year, but the Quest for Glory series was oddly missing. And I love to replay them.

Hope I get in the beta, too...



------------------------------------------------
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"The Bellic boys! Talking over your town, assholes!"
 
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30. Dark Engine Jul 11, 2008, 09:40 Shadowcat
 
Shock 2 and Thief 1/Gold/2 are (for most people) running very nicely on recent hardware thanks to the sterling efforts behind ddfix and the widescreen mod. TTLG's servers had a hardware failure and won't be back up until after the weekend, but Google has the relevant thread cached: http://www.google.com/search?q=cache:-w03DOKM2fIJ:www.ttlg.com/FORUMS/showthread.php%3Ft%3D117616

I can't help but think that support could turn out to be a problem for GOG, given that they are intending for all games to work under XP and Vista. I think it's most unlikely that they'll have the resources to subject each game to the kind of testing that a game would undergo before its original release, and there may well be issues running them on the newer operating systems that don't rear their heads immediately. Hopefully they don't get bogged down dealing with such things.

I'd also say that it's time for some people who try to justify piracy to put their money where their mouth is. Cheap prices, no DRM, absolutely no excuse not to buy.

And while I hate to sound overly-dramatic over just an announcement, it occurs to me that this site is something most of us have only ever dreamed would happen. In today's market, the idea of anyone releasing classic games, DRM-free, that 'just work' on your modern PC is just extraordinary. If this project was to fail due to people not even being willing to fork out $6-10 for a classic game, who knows if we would ever get another opportunity like it?

Someone is actually doing this. I'd say it's time to jump on board with both feet, and make sure it's here to stay That goes even if the service turns out to be a bit lacking to begin with. Hopefully it will be fine, but in any case it's bound to improve with time -- just so long as the company is still around to improve it.


This comment was edited on Jul 11, 09:48.
 
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29. Re: No subject Jul 11, 2008, 04:55 Chaos the Crazy
 
I've had both SS2 and Torment running just fine on my rig I built a few months ago. With SS2, you have to disable one of the CPU cores...same thing with Thief 1/2. Try this: http://www16.brinkster.com/salvage/thief/darkengine.htm

As far as Torment, I didn't do anything different - it works fine as do all the BG/IWD titles.

DOSBOX and Doomsday have also provided me with endless hours of old school geeking out.

 
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28. Re: Resolution Jul 11, 2008, 03:49 Jerykk
 
Recently got a game called Sacrifice, anyone remember that old chestnut?

Of course. It's a classic.

I thought The Witcher was great too =P It was one of the very few RPGs where I actually had to spend a lot of time thinking about my choices. Mass Effect was disappointing in that regard, as most of the choices were very clearly good or evil with no long-term repercussions. The Witcher wasn't perfect, as the character development (in terms of skills) was pretty limited and the combat overly simplistic. Still, I think meaningful choice is the most important part of an RPG and The Witcher really nailed that.

 
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27. Resolution Jul 11, 2008, 03:41 Bilbo
 
My main issue with old games is resolution, if you have a TFT monitor which is quite large the only way to play these days is in a tiny window 640x480, I know with 3d games getting them to run at a higher res widescreen is possible as Ive done this with some games. But stuff like fallout which is 2d you have no chance, I really wanna play planescape again probably the best RPG ever made simply great.
Oh yea the witcher sucked, massively disappointed with that game. For me the combat was just amazingly meh! But this is a good idea. I still like physically owning the originals tho and I think most hardcore pc gamers do.
Recently got a game called Sacrifice, anyone remember that old chestnut?

 
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26. house specialities Jul 11, 2008, 03:07 Kxmode
 
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.

LOL at that last sentence!

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Game p/reviewer for http://www.gameindustry.com/
 
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25. Re: No subject Jul 11, 2008, 02:45 Asmodai
 
I haven't been able to get either title to run properly (and have had a fair bit of trouble with other old titles, I'd love to play M&M VI again ; ).

I suspect as games get older, they become more sensitive to even the slightest problems and everyone has different systems with lots of new ways to break stuff.

Bringing this stuff up to scratch so an entire generation who might have missed out on these classics is a great idea, and it also helps us older nostalgists (yeah, I made it up ; ) who will perhaps remember the game far more kindly than we should, but will still love to play it in all it's faded glory. =)

 
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24. Re: No subject Jul 11, 2008, 01:25 manic half
 

Meh, this is just Interplay trying to sell their back catalog (again) so that they can meet this month's rent. Why won't they die already?

because before you obviously got into gaming, they were one of the best. and some of these games are hard to find. so go back to your halo3, nothing for you here.

i think this will be cool. cant wait.

 
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23. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 23:47 Jerykk
 
Meh, this is just Interplay trying to sell their back catalog (again) so that they can meet this month's rent. Why won't they die already?

I think Interplay has published more classic games than any other publisher. Before they went downhill, they really were the best. If by some miracle, they manage to get back on their feet and reclaim their former glory, I'd be a happy camper.

 
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22. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 22:26 mag
 
If I could remedy that problem, I'd love to go back and finish the game. Any advice?
I played through on XP (or was it 2K?) a year or two ago. I recall having that problem (or something similar) and managing to fix it, but honestly I forget what it was. I think it was, to an extent, nVidia's shitty drivers. Try disabling anisotropic filtering, antialiasing and all that jazz? Or Google for it. There was a solution for my problem, somewhere.

 
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21. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 21:37 Mingus
 
I have always wanted to play Fallout 2, but didn't buy it when it was first out.

Heck, I hope they have the original Fallout available so I can play that little gem again!

So many games...so little time...


This comment was edited on Jul 10, 21:39.
 
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20. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 21:06 Fion
 
IMHO it's quite cool. Specifically though I recommend that anyone who hasn't played Giants, pick it up when it becomes available. It was a hardcore sleeper hit that didn't sell very well but those that did play it, loved it. Like PST and others. Just flat out a fun game.

 
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19. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 20:43 ViRGE
 
Meh, this is just Interplay trying to sell their back catalog (again) so that they can meet this month's rent. Why won't they die already?

 
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18. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 20:22 nin
 
This is bloody brilliant. That's all I can say. I can't wait to try this out.

I suspect they'll be getting a lot of my money...



------------------------------------------------
http://theslip.nin.com/
"The Bellic boys! Talking over your town, assholes!"
 
http://www.nin.com/pub/tension/
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17. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 19:40 Parallax Abstraction
 
This is bloody brilliant. That's all I can say. I can't wait to try this out.  
Parallax Abstraction
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16. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 19:21 VT Hoodlum
 
I was playing through Planescape: Torment on XP a few months ago, and was enjoying the hell out of it(never played it when it came out) but I had to stop because whenever there was any kind of spell effect, the game ground to a halt. I'm talking like one frame every five seconds with the PC speaker stuck on blasting the tones of the spell effect one agonizing frame at a time. I tried messing with all the in-game settings, but nothing helped. If I could remedy that problem, I'd love to go back and finish the game. Any advice?

 
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15. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 19:00 Kajetan
 
... if I could play either of these titles again without building an old 98 box ...

Most of the promoted games are running nicely on XP, including PS:T, right out of the box. For SS2, you might run into trouble, but there are solutions for this problem.

 
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14. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 18:36 Vulkan
 
The bit in the installer EULA read as follows:

"You may make copies of the Software
for your personal noncommercial home entertainment use and to give to
friends and acquaintances on a no cost noncommercial basis. This
limited right to copy the Software expressly excludes any copying or
distribution of the Software on a commercial basis, including,
without limitation, bundling the product with any other product or
service and any give away of the Software in connection with another
product or service. "

The problem is that the game also copied another EULA on a text file from the CDs after installation, which was slightly different and didn't include the "friends" clause that the installer EULA had:

"The Software, including, without limitation, all code, data structures,
characters, images, sounds, text, screens, game play, derivative works and
all other elements of the Software may not be copied, resold, rented,
leased, distributed (electronically or otherwise), used on a pay-per-play,
coin-op or other for-charge basis, or for any commercial purpose. Any
permissions granted herein are provided on a temporary basis and can be
withdrawn by Interplay Productions at any time. All rights not expressly
granted are reserved."

 
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13. Re: No subject Jul 10, 2008, 18:34 Asmodai
 
I hope they do Planescape Torment and System Shock 2.

I'll confess that my inner nerdling ran off and touched itself... multiple times... at the thought of this.

The graphics will still be ancient, control systems will be kludgy but I'll be in heaven if I could play either of these titles again without building an old 98 box, despite the fact I own both (and many others).

And most of these titles are small enough that you could comfortably download them on a fast BB link in 30-60 mins. The ultimate bargain bin except it's got some of the best games of all time.

Great idea, best of luck to em.

 
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12. No subject Jul 10, 2008, 18:19 Tim James
 
With Freespace 2, you still have to spend a *little* time getting the open installer and everything. According to the picture on Shacknews, it's 6 bucks to download the stupid thing from a three-letter website. Many people with real jobs would be more than happy to pay for that convenience.

 
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