IBM-PC GAMING GUIDE

This document was created on 3/11/03, and last updated on 17/6/11, by James Jacobs of Amigan Software. It deals with 25 selected CGA games for the original IBM-PC. Please email us with any corrections to this document.

Alley Cat
IBM 1984
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Bouncing Babies
Dave Baskin 1984
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Bricks
Vincent Bly 198?
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 99%
Bushido: The Way of the Warrior
Ebenel 1983
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Castle Adventure
Kevin Bales 1984
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Chomp
? 198?
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Congo Bongo
Sega 1984
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Cosmic Crusader
Funtastic 1982
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Decathlon
IBM 1982
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Dig Dug
Atari 1983
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Floppy Frenzy
Windmill Software 1982
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Frogger
? 1983
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Hard Hat Mack
Electronic Arts 1984
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Monopoly
Don Gibson 1985
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Montzeuma's Revenge
? 1984
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Moonbugs
Windmill Software 1983
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Novatron
Veri-Soft Works 1982
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Pango
Sheng-Chung Liu 1983
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Paratrooper
Orion Software 1982
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Pitstop ][
Epyx 1984
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Round 42
Elven Software 1986
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Shamus
Atari 1984
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Space Strike
Michael Abrash 1982
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Spacewar
Bill Seiler 1985
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%
Zaxxon
Sega 1984
DOSBox 0.74 Compatibility: 100%

Game Help

Alley Cat To get the joystick to work, you should edit your DOSBOX.CONF to have cycles=520 and timed=TRUE. If you still have problems, delete mapper.txt.
Bushido: The Way of the Warrior

The numeric keypad is used, as follows:

Lt Up Rt
Lt Tu Rt
Lt Dn Rt

Tu: Turn around
Lt: Walk/punch/kick Left
Rt: Walk/punch/kick Right
Up: Jump/punch/kick Up
Dn: Squat/punch/kick Down

Top row: jump/high punch/high kick
Middle row: walk/medium punch/medium kick
Bottom row: roll/low punch/low kick

F1/F3: walk mode
F2: punch mode
F4: kick mode
F9: return to main menu

Floppy Frenzy Traps are always laid in the direction you are currently facing, left or right (you cannot lay them at intersections), and are impassable.

A weakened enemy which hits a trap is healed.

All controls are press-and-release. They are buffered, and fetched at intersections, similar to Pango. However, unlike Pango, there are no key repeat problems and therefore you could hold down the keys if desired. You cannot stop moving, except by leaning against something.

Frogger The default keys are A, Z, ' and ` (backtick/grave) for up, down, left and right, respectively. All controls are press-and-release.
Hard Hat Mack The Alt key will bring up the key redefinition screen.
The spacebar will start the game.
F2 to quit to DOS.
F9 to calibrate joystick.
All controls are press-and-release.
Pango All controls are press-and-release. You cannot stop moving, except by leaning against something or using the stop key.
To get the joystick to work, you should edit your DOSBOX.CONF to have cycles=520 and timed=TRUE. If you still have problems, delete mapper.txt. If you still have problems, try cycles=540.
The game maintains a buffer (ie. a queue) of keyboard input. Whenever you are not "between" tiles (ie. moving from one tile to another), the game fetches a keystroke from the keyboard queue and acts on it. If the keystroke results in no movement (eg. stop, or turn only), another keystroke will be fetched very quickly after; otherwise, you have to wait until you have moved a distance of one tile before another keystroke is fetched. It is thus not possible to turn (even backwards), nor stop, while "between" tiles. You can press the appropriate key at any time but it will be queued and not acted on until you are no longer "between" tiles. The game should have turned off key repeat but neglects to do this. (Indeed, there is no BIOS call to do this on a PC/XT; the game should probably have used direct keyboard hardware access to get its input. Or, when fetching keys from the queue, the game could just discard any "keystroke" that is the same as the previously pressed key, and fetch the next key in the queue instead.) Therefore, if you hold down a key for too long, the game will put many copies of the key into the buffer, and you will have to wait until these are "used up" (at the rate of one per tile). So you must use the "press and release" technique rather than holding down keys. There doesn't seem any way to configure the typematic rate via the DOSBox GUI nor configuration file. What you need to do is to run SLOW (within DOSBox) before running Pango. After you quit the game, you will probably want to run NORMAL (or indeed FAST). These files are here. Or just use a joystick.
Shamus Cursor keys to move. Cursor key and Alt to fire. There are keyboard problems when holding movement keys for long periods. Running SLOW first (or using a joystick instead) might help.
Space Strike The default keys are Z for left, C for right, X to stop, and spacebar to fire. All controls are press-and-release. You cannot stop moving, except by leaning against the level edges or using the stop key.

Space Strike is an .IMG file; therefore it is run like this:

BOOT SPACESTR.IMG

Emulator Usage

Edit the following entries in DOSBOX.CONF:

machine=cga
cycles=520

And add the following lines to DOSBOX.CONF, in the [autoexec] section (assuming that your games are in C:\GAMES):

MOUNT C C:\
C:
CD GAMES
DIR

An example configuration is here.

Emulator Compatibility Issues

Bricks:
(1) The Caps Lock key is not handled correctly. The fix for this is to issue the command SET SDL_DISABLE_LOCK_KEYS=1 before running DOSBox. You also need to overwrite the included SDL.DLL with the newer V1.2.14, available from http://www.libsdl.org/release/SDL-1.2.14-win32.zip .
(2) The screen adjustment feature in the main menu does not work (unimportant).
(3) The numeric keypad 0/Ins cannot be used to move the bat right; the dedicated Ins key must be used instead.
(4) Using the Home key when instructed to "press a key" causes the game to quit to DOS soon afterwards, for some reason.

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