The wonderful and amazing Good Old Games store is having a holiday sale, where almost everything is 50% off. There are some exceptions (why the first Gothic never goes on sale ever is a mystery to me), but if you’ve been thinking about picking up something from your catalog, now is the time.
If you haven’t actually been thinking about buying old games, I urge you to start. The GOG catalog is full of amazing games, both really old and only moderately old. Their recent contract with EA has made games like Ultima VII easily available for the first time in ages for anyone who is interested in playing them again, or first the first time.
Since GOG’s focus is on old(ish/er) games, you might be worried about getting them up and running on your modern machine since I assume you’re not reading this on a 486 box somewhere. Well, have no fear–one of the best things about GOG is that before they release a title they make it compatible with modern Windows machines. This saves a lot of headaches and spares you from having to mess around with DOSBox for many titles. Plus, all the releases are DRM free and it’s nice to support a company that isn’t interested in coming up with aggravating schema to make it harder for you to play games you’ve paid for.
With all that in mind, here’s my ~handpicked~ list of games I recommend. This is only my most favorite titles on the site, a list of everything you should buy from them would be much longer and less useful. You should buy all of these games, and then dink around and buy some more. If you love RPGs, Strategy and Classic Adventure games they have a lot more than what I’ve got outlined below.
- Arcanum (RPG) — Huge open RPG with a bigger map than Fallout. You can play this game pretty much however you want, most of the quests don’t have a set way of being solved.
- Caesar 3 (Strategy/City Building) — Standard setting city builder. If you’ve played any game in the genre since this one came out, you know the drill. It’s amazing that it still does almost everything better than modern games.
- Dungeon Keeper (Strategy/City Building) — Build up your dungeon and kill heroes. It’s fun being evil.
- Fallout (RPG) — It’s Fallout.
- Fallout 2 (RPG) — It’s Fallout 2.
- Freedom Force vs the Third Reich (RPG) — Squad-based action RPG where you control super heroes straight out of the golden and silver age of comics. Made by Ken Levine.
- Ishar Compilation (RPG) — True classic of the Amiga era. Try not to create a murder chain in your party.
- Lands of Lore 1 + 2 (RPG) — Westwood’s first game outside of the D&D ruleset!
- Rayman 2 (Platformer) — Michel Ancel’s masterpiece. One of the greatest non-Mario platformers ever.
- Septerra Core: Legacy of the Creator (RPG) — Underrated (and unknown) RPG with a lot of unique aspects. I found it in a bargain bin moons ago and was taken aback by how good it is.
- Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri (Strategy) — Sid Meier’s best game.
- Tropico Reloaded (Strategy/City Building) — If you’ve ever wanted to be a dictator in Latin America now is your chance!
- Baldur’s Gate 2 Complete (RPG) — Probably the best AD&D branded game of all time. Avoids a lot of the hilarious dialogue found in BioWare games.
- Beyond Good & Evil (Action) — Not a perfect game, but a really well done and interesting title. It’s quite an experience, and maybe some day we’ll actually get BG&E2.
- Gothic 2 Gold (RPG) — If you’re into Elder Scrolls type games, this is up your alley. Much more story driven and you play as a set character but you have a lot of options in terms of how you can play through.
- Heroes of Might and Magic III Complete (Strategy) — If you like turn-based strategy non-Civ type division there’s nothing better than HoMM III.
- The Longest Journey (Adventure) — Play through a wonderful story. One of the best adventure games of all time.
- Sanitarium (Adventure) — Adventure game where you have to sift through crazy people doing crazy things.
- Syberia (Adventure) — Insanely beautiful setting, charming story, puzzles that make sense.