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WCP
03-10-2010, 12:21 AM
Around Spring of 1996, I built my first gaming PC. I'm not 100 percent positive, but I'm pretty sure it was based around a Pentium 200mmx and a Voodoo card. I went on to upgrade and build new PC's every so often, and continued to play PC games till the release of the Sega Dreamcast in September of 1999. After that, my interest in PC gaming basically died.

I've got those nostalgic feelings for playing some PC games from 1996 to 1999. Basically, from the time 3D accelerators first appeared on the scene, until the launch of the Dreamcast.

Games I'd like to play again:

Quake
Descent
System Shock
Phantasmagoria
Carmageddon
Dark Forces 2 - Jedi Knight
Tomb Raider
Tomb Raider 2
Moto Racer
Descent 2
MDK
Blade Runner
Interstate 76
Pod
Unreal (the original)
Half-Life
Thief
SiN
GPolice
Assault Rigs
Quake 2
Carmageddon 2: Carpocalypse Now


Those are a few of the games that come to mind, but I'm sure there are a ton of others. Basically, I would like to be able to play these games at max settings, and have them run as smooth and natural as possible. I have no idea what motherboard, cpu and which video card I should go with to accomplish this. I was thinking of two voodoo cards in SLI mode, but I don't know which voodoo cards to get. I'm guessing I should try to find a PC Gamer magazine from 1999, and try to see what was considered a kick ass gaming rig back at that point in time. I'm guessing I would want to have Windows 98: SE as my operating system.

Does anybody have any suggestions?

Soviet Conscript
03-10-2010, 01:00 AM
well, i can give you the specs of my win98 pc that pretty much plays everything from the era i throw at it great.

windows 98SE
450mhtz pentium II
387mb ram
dvd, cd and 3.5 floppy drive
AGP voodoo 3 3500 video card
Diamond MonsterSound MX300 sound card
40GB hdd

WCP
03-10-2010, 01:10 AM
well, i can give you the specs of my win98 pc that pretty much plays everything from the era i throw at it great.

windows 98SE
450mhtz pentium II
256mb ram (it acually may be a wierd number like 3XX ram, forget)
dvd, cd and 3.5 floppy drive
AGP voodoo 3 video card
AWE64 gold sound card

is a single voodoo 3 video card better than running 2 voodoo 2 cards in SLI?

Soviet Conscript
03-10-2010, 01:43 AM
is a single voodoo 3 video card better than running 2 voodoo 2 cards in SLI?

thats acually a great question that i asked myself right after i posted. i'm looking into it. its obviosuly simpler and your only useing 1 slot as opposed to 3.

hmmm, well as long as its an AGP 3500 or possibly 3000 it seems to be both simpler and faster then duel voodoo 2's

http://www.papadoc.net/Voodoo3500shootout.htm

Jorpho
03-10-2010, 08:16 AM
Save yourself the trouble. You should be able to play pretty much all of those games you mentioned on any current PC with Windows XP or maybe even Windows 7. Most of them are for sale at GOG.com ; some of them are even on Steam. Certainly, there's nothing to be gained by playing any of them with a Voodoo card.

The trickiest one would probably be Thief, but there are some excellent fanmade patches to solve problems you might have with that one.

WCP
03-10-2010, 11:40 AM
Save yourself the trouble. You should be able to play pretty much all of those games you mentioned on any current PC with Windows XP or maybe even Windows 7. Most of them are for sale at GOG.com ; some of them are even on Steam. Certainly, there's nothing to be gained by playing any of them with a Voodoo card.

The trickiest one would probably be Thief, but there are some excellent fanmade patches to solve problems you might have with that one.

I remember trying to play the original Unreal game on my current PC, and the problem was, the game was TOO FREAKING FAST. Way too fast. I mentioned this to a friend of mine, and he explained that I would need to run it in some type of emulator that would simulate a PC from 1999 or so, so that it would run normally. He also said that it would be even better to just have an extra PC, circa 1999, that would run the games naturally, not having to run them in a special emulator.

Doesn't GOG and Steam take those original games and run them in a special emulator that helps slow them down to a more natural speed?

Arkhan
03-10-2010, 11:47 AM
I remember trying to play the original Unreal game on my current PC, and the problem was, the game was TOO FREAKING FAST. Way too fast. I mentioned this to a friend of mine, and he explained that I would need to run it in some type of emulator that would simulate a PC from 1999 or so, so that it would run normally. He also said that it would be even better to just have an extra PC, circa 1999, that would run the games naturally, not having to run them in a special emulator.

Doesn't GOG and Steam take those original games and run them in a special emulator that helps slow them down to a more natural speed?


euh. I play unreal on a dual core CPU. "simulating a CPU" from 1999 isn't going to do too much for you since those CPUs were pentium or better.. You might just need to patch the game properly. I've had games on dual core machines require a patch to get rid of speed instability.

the only time you need to throttle down a game is stuff designed on pre Pentium stuff, or games that used the CPU processing speeds as a sort of timer (like Ultima)

WCP
03-10-2010, 11:53 AM
euh. I play unreal on a dual core CPU. "simulating a CPU" from 1999 isn't going to do too much for you since those CPUs were pentium or better.. You might just need to patch the game properly. I've had games on dual core machines require a patch to get rid of speed instability.

the only time you need to throttle down a game is stuff designed on pre Pentium stuff, or games that used the CPU processing speeds as a sort of timer (like Ultima)


Hmm. Maybe I should try it again then. I remember when I was playing Unreal, I did get the last patch that it had, and I applied that patch, but it still just seemed like it was running at 200 frames per second or something, and it was pretty unplayable. I'll try it out again...

Push Upstairs
03-10-2010, 11:54 AM
The computer I have is 500mhz and I believe it is from 1999 (maybe even 2000).

Whatever you get, go ahead and max out the RAM (mine tops out at 384 meg).

Arkhan
03-10-2010, 12:36 PM
Hmm. Maybe I should try it again then. I remember when I was playing Unreal, I did get the last patch that it had, and I applied that patch, but it still just seemed like it was running at 200 frames per second or something, and it was pretty unplayable. I'll try it out again...

lol I wonder if maybe the original time you played it is was just going sooooo slooooooow because your computer wasn't able to handle it!


Google like "Unreal dual core patch" or something.

http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=983781

something like that.

Jorpho
03-10-2010, 01:00 PM
Doesn't GOG and Steam take those original games and run them in a special emulator that helps slow them down to a more natural speed?You might be thinking of Gametap. I believe GOG.com does use DOSBox for its DOS games (as it would be pretty much a necessity). Steam also uses DOSBox for some things, but aside from that there is no "special emulator" involved.

As Steam is still selling Unreal, there are almost certainly patches available for it that will make it run on a typical PC. Steam doesn't have a monopoly on these things (at least as far as non-Valve software is concerned).


Hmm. Maybe I should try it again then. I remember when I was playing Unreal, I did get the last patch that it had, and I applied that patch, but it still just seemed like it was running at 200 frames per second or something, and it was pretty unplayable. I'll try it out again...You realize that if it was actually running at 200 frames per second, your monitor would have to be refreshing at 200 frames per second?

WCP
03-10-2010, 02:07 PM
You realize that if it was actually running at 200 frames per second, your monitor would have to be refreshing at 200 frames per second?

Lol... Yeah, Obviously I'm exaggerating a wee bit. The bottom line is that it was running WAY faster than it should have been. It was like my character was Flash or something.

jb143
03-10-2010, 02:47 PM
Actually, the game logic could be running at 200 fps while the screen is operating much slower. If that wasn't the case then the answer to running the game slower could be as simple as turning down the refresh rate of your monitor(some old games did work this way).

PC-ENGINE HELL
03-10-2010, 09:02 PM
Around Spring of 1996, I built my first gaming PC. I'm not 100 percent positive, but I'm pretty sure it was based around a Pentium 200mmx and a Voodoo card. I went on to upgrade and build new PC's every so often, and continued to play PC games till the release of the Sega Dreamcast in September of 1999. After that, my interest in PC gaming basically died.

I've got those nostalgic feelings for playing some PC games from 1996 to 1999. Basically, from the time 3D accelerators first appeared on the scene, until the launch of the Dreamcast.

Games I'd like to play again:

Quake
Descent
System Shock
Phantasmagoria
Carmageddon
Dark Forces 2 - Jedi Knight
Tomb Raider
Tomb Raider 2
Moto Racer
Descent 2
MDK
Blade Runner
Interstate 76
Pod
Unreal (the original)
Half-Life
Thief
SiN
GPolice
Assault Rigs
Quake 2
Carmageddon 2: Carpocalypse Now


Those are a few of the games that come to mind, but I'm sure there are a ton of others. Basically, I would like to be able to play these games at max settings, and have them run as smooth and natural as possible. I have no idea what motherboard, cpu and which video card I should go with to accomplish this. I was thinking of two voodoo cards in SLI mode, but I don't know which voodoo cards to get. I'm guessing I should try to find a PC Gamer magazine from 1999, and try to see what was considered a kick ass gaming rig back at that point in time. I'm guessing I would want to have Windows 98: SE as my operating system.

Does anybody have any suggestions?

If you want a system fast enough to handle anything from that time period, and you want something reliable, here is a list of stuff for you with some links for some stuff ebay wise:

AMD Slot A Athlon cpu from 600-700MHZ speed wise (make sure you get one with a cooler attached):
http://cgi.ebay.com/AMD-Athlon-600Mhz-Slot-A-CPU_W0QQitemZ220568482138QQcmdZViewItemQQptZCPUs?h ash=item335ae7f15a

Gateway Kadoka Slot A motherboard (does not rely on electrolytic capacitors, very durable):
http://cgi.ebay.com/Gateway-Kadoka-OAASNP05-Slot-A-ATX-Motherboard_W0QQitemZ260551597040QQcmdZViewItemQQp tZMotherboards?hash=item3caa15dbf0

3DFX Banshee:
http://cgi.ebay.com/Ensoniq-GB1000-AGP-Voodoo-Banshee-3D-16MB-PC-Video-Card_W0QQitemZ310205785002QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_De faultDomain_0?hash=item4839b4a3aa

http://cgi.ebay.com/MaxiGamer-Phoenix-AGP-Voodoo-Banshee-3D-16MB-Video-Card_W0QQitemZ370345254297QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_De faultDomain_0?hash=item563a4c1d99

3DFX Voodoo 3:
http://cgi.ebay.com/3DFX-VOODOO-3-16MB-AGP-VIDEO-CARD-w-TV-OUT_W0QQitemZ220541711089QQcmdZViewItemQQptZPCC_Vi deo_TV_Cards?hash=item33594f72f1

TNT2 Ultra, Geforce 256, or Geforce 2 GTS/Ultra will also cover the graphics card area also. Prices on them vary on ebay. The 256 came in Sdram and DDR Sgram flavors, so if you planned to gun for one, try to find a DDR one as its a bit faster.

Soundblaster PCI Live or Live Value:
http://cgi.ebay.com/Creative-Sound-Blaster-Live-Value-sound-card-CT4670_W0QQitemZ260563852195QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_ DefaultDomain_0?hash=item3caad0dba3

http://cgi.ebay.com/Soundblaster-Live-CT4780-PCI_W0QQitemZ350326725574QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_Def aultDomain_0?hash=item5191199bc6

DVD or decent CD-R drive will run you around $25 after shipping.
256 megs of PC133 Sdram maybe $10 at the most. 40 gig ATA 133 hard drive will run around $20 after shipping.

Rocketfish 550 watt power supply (excellent and reliable, and wont even begin to break a sweat powering all the above, and it has cord management):
http://cgi.ebay.com/Rocketfish-550-Watt-ATX-PCIe-SATA-Power-Supply-NEW_W0QQitemZ160412373832QQcmdZViewItemQQptZPCA_UP S?hash=item2559529348

A cheap old lan card will run 5 to 10 bucks.

Full size to medium size ATX PC case can run cheap, between $30-50 with shipping. Windows 98Se or ME will get you by either way. On any used CPU or graphics card you get, be prepared to swap out the fans if the part is used. Most gpus from back then that had fans used 40mm size fans. Cpu fans on slot A coolers tended to be 40 to 60mm.

WCP
03-11-2010, 01:28 AM
Today I actually tried playing Quake (the first one), on my current PC. The game runs perfectly fine. It was pretty enjoyable experience overall playing it. I think I'll just try running a bunch of these games on my current PC, and just see if they run ok. Maybe I don't really need to build a specific 1999,2000 era PC after all.

Arkhan
03-12-2010, 03:51 AM
Maybe I don't really need to build a specific 1999,2000 era PC after all.

You sure the hell dont! The only thing that has changed aside from faster CPUs and moar rams, and the obvious advances in graphics hardware, is the OS.

New video cards, sound cards, etc, are all legacy compatible and you should be able to play just about anything from the win98 era on a new machine.

Youll run into some hiccups on some games and have to fiddle around to get it to run, but yeah.... that happened BITD too.


I just ran Betrayal at Krondor, Descent 1, Lords of the Realm 2, Quake 1, and Unreal on my one newer machine, all perfectly.:

AMD dual core cpu
4gb RAM
SLI'd video cards (DirectX 10!!11112233445)

Windows 7

yes, SEVEN.

even diablo 2 on the internet worked!

:)

Jorpho
03-12-2010, 08:22 AM
New video cards, sound cards, etc, are all legacy compatibleHeck no! There are apparently tremendous compatibility problems with NVidia drivers newer than 77.x, and said drivers are needed if you have one of the newer NVidia cards. NVidia might have finally fixed that recently, though.

Kitsune Sniper
03-12-2010, 06:07 PM
Quake
Dark Forces 2 - Jedi Knight
Unreal (the original)
Half-Life
SiN
Quake 2

All of these have been released via Steam, and work perfectly on modern systems. Many have been patched to run in newer systems (though you can't use the Wages of SiN expansion with the Steam version.) The Quake games do -not- have CD audio, but you can use a Windows engine port to run the games that way, and even use MP3/FLAC rips of the audio tracks.


Interstate 76
Descent
Phantasmagoria
Descent 2
MDK

You can get all of these from GOG.com for cheap, or you can install them on modern systems with DOSBox.

I haven't dealt with the other games, but apparently Blade Runner runs on Windows XP and 7, but not Vista.

aaron7
03-24-2010, 01:02 PM
My current rig runs all those games well:

Pentium 233 MMX
128mb RAM
20gb hard drive (ok, not period correct lol)
ATI Radeon 7000 64mb PCI
3com 10/100 PCI ethernet
SB AWE64 ISA sound card
Internal stereo speakers
14" LCD on the case

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v245/aaron7/SSPX0103.jpg

NayusDante
03-31-2010, 01:02 PM
I'm torn about what OS to use for games from this era... I have 95, 98 (not SE), and ME available.

Here's my expected build:
AMD 1400 chip (I forget the name, runs either 1050 or 1400mhz)
512mb DDR 333
3dfx Voodoo 3 2000 AGP (maybe a 3000 with TV out if my eBay offer goes through)
Sound Blaster Live (gives me EAX...)
160gb IDE

Is this overkill, or should I just set up my Pentium II 266 for a dual-boot? I'm trying to shift that one to DOS and early Windows, but the framerates on 1999-era stuff aren't perfect.

aaron7
03-31-2010, 01:04 PM
Windows ME is fine once tweaked. It was faster, had a better defrag, more built in drivers, etc.

The hard dive is definitely overkill!

NayusDante
03-31-2010, 01:37 PM
ME it is then. Yeah, I know the drive is crazy, and I'm still thinking about how to partition it. On the plus side, I can move all my old Windows game ISOs onto it, and free up space on my main. There's ISO mounting tools for ME, right?

So on one of these 96-99 era systems, what else could they run? I'm curious about UT2003 on this spec... How about the other way around, can I run the DOS glide-driver games on ME?

aaron7
03-31-2010, 01:43 PM
Might need better video, but Quake 3 Arena is the shit!

Jorpho
03-31-2010, 02:29 PM
This is the first time I've ever seen someone recommend ME. Granted, I've had my suspicions that claims of its inferiority are overstated, but no one has ever refuted them before. What tweaks are you thinking of, Mr. aaron7? (Certainly, ME will quickly become unstable with 512 MB of RAM unless properly configured, but the same goes for 9x.)

There are instructions at mdgx.com for taking the best features out of ME and sticking them in a 98SE installation, but if you don't have 98SE handy that won't be helpful at all.


There's ISO mounting tools for ME, right?Yup, there are older versions of Daemon Tools that should do the trick.

By the way, Q3 is on sale on Steam at the moment. Of course, I would doubt that you can get Steam running on 9x/ME, even with some of the kernel hacks that have been developed.

aaron7
03-31-2010, 02:42 PM
Why would 98 or ME care about 512mb RAM? I've had many systems in the shop with that and no issues.

Windows ME was a fine OS. The main complaint was the scandisk check on nearly every boot. That's easily changable (just google that one). Also disable the sytem restore in the system properties. Make sure to do all the Windows Updates as well and it'll be just as stable as 98!

Jorpho
03-31-2010, 02:48 PM
Why would 98 or ME care about 512mb RAM? I've had many systems in the shop with that and no issues.There is certainly no shortage of reported problems with more than 512 MB out there. Admittedly I have only had experience with instability on one machine with 512 MB.


Windows ME was a fine OS. The main complaint was the scandisk check on nearly every boot. That's easily changable (just google that one). Also disable the sytem restore in the system properties. Make sure to do all the Windows Updates as well and it'll be just as stable as 98!Don't forget the lack of real-mode DOS.

PC-ENGINE HELL
03-31-2010, 04:32 PM
There is certainly no shortage of reported problems with more than 512 MB out there. Admittedly I have only had experience with instability on one machine with 512 MB.

Don't forget the lack of real-mode DOS.

I was going to say, ME runs fine off 512 megs. There is a couple of fixes for that if you actually need to run more then that anyway. My capture system runs ME with 512megs, I never have issues with it. As for lacking a real dos mode, I never did get around to testing this myself, but heard others had success with it.

http://majorgeeks.com/Real_DOS-Mode_Patch_For_ME_d513.html
and
http://www.dewassoc.com/support/winme/real_dos.htm

Most everything on the guys game list will run fine in ME regardless anyway. Like aaron7 said, just make sure to update it completely and it will run solid.

NayusDante
03-31-2010, 04:40 PM
Is the Windows Update server still up for ME? I wasn't even going to put a NIC in this machine...

PC-ENGINE HELL
03-31-2010, 04:54 PM
Is the Windows Update server still up for ME? I wasn't even going to put a NIC in this machine...

Yea, its still going, so you can update fully. I used it just a couple of weeks ago in fact.


ME it is then. Yeah, I know the drive is crazy, and I'm still thinking about how to partition it. On the plus side, I can move all my old Windows game ISOs onto it, and free up space on my main. There's ISO mounting tools for ME, right?

So on one of these 96-99 era systems, what else could they run? I'm curious about UT2003 on this spec... How about the other way around, can I run the DOS glide-driver games on ME?

Yea the drive size is a bit large, but more is always better if you want to house a lot of game installs anyway. UT2003 will run on a system running Windows ME no problem. Same if you are using 512 megs and a Athlon Thunderbird 1400 mhz. The issue you will have is getting the game to run on a Voodoo 3. I know the game will run on a Voodoo 5 though with 3rd party drivers. Otherwise if you are wanting to run something like UT2k3 you may want to go with a GPU with more horsepower, like a Radeon 8500 or Geforce 2 Ultra/TI on up.

For mounting ISOs in Windows ME you can use Virtual CloneDrive. It works fine, and will save you the hassle of trying to dig through older versions of Daemon Tools and Power ISO trying to find one that works.
http://www.slysoft.com/en/virtual-clonedrive.html

aaron7
03-31-2010, 05:11 PM
You can still get Windows Updates for 98SE too. You have to install IE6 first however. Not sure if that was bundled in ME or not. If not, install it first.

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=1e1550cb-5e5d-48f5-b02b-20b602228de6&DisplayLang=en

NayusDante
03-31-2010, 08:17 PM
Well, I get 20-30 fps average in UT2003 at normal settings with my Voodoo 3 2000 OCed to 166mhz. It doesn't look like the lighting is working the way it should be, everything's kinda washed out. I tried maxing it out, and it seems to crash pretty quickly, but framerates are decent.

Jorpho
03-31-2010, 10:25 PM
Rather than mucking with Windows Update, it would be far better to get one of the unofficial service packs for 98SE/ME, I would think.

Also, I really can't see why anyone would want to use a Voodoo card for a non-3DFX game anymore, unless perhaps it is explicitly suggested in the game's documentation. (Pretty much the only thing my Voodoo2 was used for was Anachronox, and that was only because I didn't want to upgrade my AGP All-in-Wonder Pro and lose my TV tuner.)

Push Upstairs
03-31-2010, 10:29 PM
You can still get Windows Updates for 98SE too. You have to install IE6 first however. Not sure if that was bundled in ME or not. If not, install it first.

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=1e1550cb-5e5d-48f5-b02b-20b602228de6&DisplayLang=en

I did not know this.

I just downloaded the Service Pack 2.1a

PC-ENGINE HELL
04-01-2010, 12:02 AM
Rather than mucking with Windows Update, it would be far better to get one of the unofficial service packs for 98SE/ME, I would think.

Also, I really can't see why anyone would want to use a Voodoo card for a non-3DFX game anymore, unless perhaps it is explicitly suggested in the game's documentation. (Pretty much the only thing my Voodoo2 was used for was Anachronox, and that was only because I didn't want to upgrade my AGP All-in-Wonder Pro and lose my TV tuner.)

When it comes down to it, I would rather make sure I got every legit update available then not. At least you will know for sure after using Windows update. It doesn't take that long to do anyway. You can have either OS fully updated in about 30 mins or less. As for 3DFX cards, the Voodoo 4 and 5 ran Direct X and Open GL related titles released until around the end early 2001, depending on the title. Even some of the earlier Direct X 8 titles run fine on a Voodoo 5, even with just using the last official drivers released by 3DFX.

Visually and frame rate wise the Voodoo3 does take more of a hit and sometimes needs fixes and work arounds, but can be used for a wide range of DX7-early DX8 games regardless. The Voodoo 3 was fully capable Direct X 6 generation card. The Voodoo 4 and 5 do perfectly fine, if lets say you wanted to run something like NOLF, Serious Sam, Max Payne, MOH:AA(with Mesa GL file) or Aliens versus Predator 2, as they benefited from DX7 features and better OpenGL performance. Basically lets you squeeze more out of the hardware then just using it for Glide only.

Jorpho
04-01-2010, 12:44 AM
While they may work "perfectly fine", you can probably get an ATI or nVidia card that will be more powerful and just as compatible, and probably be substantially cheaper, too.

PC-ENGINE HELL
04-01-2010, 02:32 AM
While they may work "perfectly fine", you can probably get an ATI or nVidia card that will be more powerful and just as compatible, and probably be substantially cheaper, too.

I think your forgetting there are some 3DFX fans out there that simply prefer to use the Voodoo line for the older pre 2k2 stuff in general over using a Nvidia or ATI product, not just for Glide titles. FSAA was pretty nice on the Voodoo 4 and 5 too for that matter for simulations and driving games, and visually superior to the GF line back then.

Also, I think you have a perceived underestimate of the power of the Voodoo 4 and 5 line. The games I mentioned above, Serious Sam, NOLF, Max Payne, and Aliens versus Predator 2, along with other stuff like Hitman, Carmageddon TDR 2000, Rollcage Stage 2, Quake 3 Team Arena, Undying, Im able to run fine on high settings with my Voodoo 5. The average fps on those titles tends to be in the 50-70 range on my system Im using my Voodoo 5500 on.

Anything above 30 is completely playable as it is, 50 on up is great obviously. Its paired with a Athlon 2600/Nforce 2 Ultra motherboard combo and a SB Live running Windows ME. Eventually Im going to pair it with a Athlon 64 cpu/motherboard combo when I get off my lazy ass and put one together. Yea, a GF 2 TI, GF3, or Radeon 7600/8500 could run some of the above faster, sure, but who cares. Like I said, I already get the fps performance I need with the V5 doing the job I want it to do, and I get the benefit of compatibility with older Glide optimized titles.

The fact older GF and ATI cards are cheaper is moot if you already have a Voodoo 3-5 lying around like NayusDante does, or in my case since I have both a Banshee and a Voodoo 5 Pci, and you know what you want to use the card for, and it does the job to your standards. If you dont have one, and dont intend to play Glide stuff, then yea, it makes sense to go with a GF 2, or Radeon card.

No one here is saying to pick a Voodoo over anything else for that matter, so no point in debating what line of cards can run what newer game better? NayusDante just was simply wondering if UT2k3 era stuff could be run, and got his answer, that was all. I already suggested the original op a small list of cards (Nvidia, ATI, and 3DFX line) to buy for the generation of games he was wanting to run.

Anything like UT 2k3, no, I myself would never use my V5 for that game, but I can understand why some 3DFX fans would. Yea it can run it well enough on medium settings with the newer 3rd party drivers, but for me personally, anything visually intensive like that, or from 2002 on up for that matter, Id rather use one of my later cards, like my Geforce 4 TI4200, or Radeon 9600 and 9700. On a computer one of those is in, I'd not be running anything released prior to late 2001 either unless the game was really demanding, because its GPU overkill.

Also, just for the record, Id never recommend anyone go and buy a Voodoo 2 for a older system. Getting a good reliable set of cards to be used in SLI would run a bit more then a solid Voodoo 3 3000 pci or agp card, and that card tramples a V2 two card combo any day of the week in Glide, Open GL, or Direct X, both in FPS and visually, take your pick. And the V2 needs a 2D capable card, just eating up more space that could be saved.

zektor
04-01-2010, 03:51 AM
I had this (but PC version, not Mac):

http://www.xlr8yourmac.com/obsidian/

It was LONG and got HOT, but it was the best damn card at the time. 3DFX was the leader...no doubt.

Push Upstairs
04-01-2010, 03:03 PM
So that card is about as long as current video cards? :)

PC-ENGINE HELL
04-01-2010, 03:42 PM
Yea Quantums X-24 is a pretty big card. They ran really hot too. You really had to use good active cooling on it,or down clock it, or it would show artifacts and hang up alot. The Voodoo 5 is long also. These are basically cards you'd have to stick in mid to full size atx towers with really good air flow.

Push Upstairs
04-02-2010, 02:01 AM
Not a problem today, but in the late 90's? My memory is a bit fuzzy about what extremes case cooling went to back then. I know the computer I had then & have now (when I found it) didn't thrill me with their cooling.

In fact, the HP I did find and fix up was in the smallest, pain in the ass, case I've ever seen a mini-ATX board in. There was no external fan, just whatever was on the tiny power supply. Granted, it was just a standard 500mhz cpu, but still...

It has a nicer case now, one that will allow mounting of fans. 90mm up front and a 120mm in back. Plenty of airflow.

PC-ENGINE HELL
04-02-2010, 02:43 AM
Back then it amounted to people doing their own modding on the cases, ect. Cutting out holes in the sides and front to mount more fans was done alot. In the X-24s case people tended to mount it at the lower pci slots, a few inchs from the bottom of the case if possible, and rig extra 80mm fans around the card to keep it cool

Push Upstairs
04-02-2010, 12:47 PM
That is why I'm perfectly fine with throwing a late 90's gaming rig into a modern case, options galore when it comes to fan placement. Even the cheapest $25 case has better cooling fan options than cases 10 years ago.

Hari Seldon
04-02-2010, 02:24 PM
So that card is about as long as current video cards? :)

Yeah, kinda. :) I had to modify my case to make space for an 5870.

migo
06-19-2010, 04:34 AM
I remember it was quite a while after Windows XP was released that a number of hardware review sites were still doing their testing with Windows 98SE, so I'd figure 98/SE is the best OS to go with. The DOS support would be the big one, for running games like Warcraft and Descent.

The TNT2 Ultra and GeForce 256/2 GTS were the flagship cards around then. Backtracking on the Voodoo 3 has shown it wasn't necessarily as bad as the 16 bit issue suggested, but I'm still not sure it's necessarily the best choice. Savage4 is probably not worth considering despite S3TC, but both the S4 and Savage2000 had better graphics quality and perforamnce with games that supported it than the GeForce cards. Glide might be a reason to chose a Voodoo 3.

For CPUs, the Celeron 300A was killer while overclocked, and for similar performance benefits the PIII Coppermine is worth looking at. I'm not sure whether you'd want to look into a system with an Intel chipset and RDRAM though.

SoundBlaster Live was the big one for sound cards, but Aureal Vortex 2 was also a strong contender at the time.

Which combination you'd go for would really depend on what games you wanted the best performance out of. I enjoyed Unreal Tournament a lot, so if I were doing that I'd try to get my hands on a Diamond Viper II Z200 for graphics purposes, although I'd need to read up on whether the P3 really is the best option or if an Athlon would serve me better.

Edit: Digging back into my memory a bit more, you'd want to go for a SCSI hard drive, or 2-4 in a RAID configuration, since you're otherwise looking at ATA-33 for the most part, or ATA-66. Dual channel RDRAM should also give a very slight edge over DDR but single channel could lose out to SDR. I remember I really wanted a Turtle Beach Montego II but couldn't afford it, so I'd lean towards an Aureal Vortex 2 based sound card like the aforementioned Montego II or the Diamond Monster Sound MX300 over a SoundBlaster Live. For video cards I did a bit more digging and it seems nVidia cards later got S3TC support, along with it's inclusion in DirectX 6.0c, but they didn't handle it perfectly. Even the TNT2 Ultra beat out the Voodoo 3 from what I can remember, and ATI and Matrox weren't that significant from what I remember. The choice would really be between an nVidia or S3 card.

migo
06-19-2010, 05:13 AM
http://www.tweak3d.net/articles/talon1/images/smallertalon.jpg

That's from 2000, so past the end of your period of nostalgia, and some components are a bit higher than what was available, but it gives a good picture.

Anything running at 500MHz should be solid, with an overclocked Celeron 300A or 333 on an ABit BH6 motherboard being the winner around '98. K6-2 500 or K6-3 500 might also do the trick, but the on die cache of the Celeron is what really made it shine. RAM was pretty expensive around then, but there's no reason not to go all out and stock up with 256MB, which is rather overkill in that era (my 64MB system ran just fine). If I remember correctly around a year later the Athlon came along and slaughtered everything, and was champion in the CPU arena, rather concurrently with how the GeForce came along and killed everything else in the market. I'm really not sure why Falcon-NW went with the V3 unless I'm misremembering when the GeForce came out and at the time it was sitll a choice between frames per second on the V3 or picture quality with a TNT2.

Peonpiate
06-22-2010, 01:13 PM
A 500mhz Athlon would suit your needs well. And if any game requires more horsepower than what a overclocked Celeron 300a could give, the Athlon would cover that. As far as cards go, I had a Voodoo 3 2000 back then, and for the money it was one of the best cards I have ever bought. The only downside to it is it doesnt render true 32 bit color, but it is faster in 16 bit color mode than other cards are, and its 16 bit color looks better [they dither down from 32 bit color I believe, which gives results close to 24bit color].

LaughingMAN.S9
06-25-2010, 11:33 PM
im actually thinking about doing this same exact thing to, although im trying to focus more on playing games from like 95 up to around 2002-2003 ish



not sure what route i should go with yet, these are some of the things i have at hand, i have


1 nvidia gts 2 pro graphics card
1 ghz intel pentium 3 chip & motherboard set
256mb of ram (possibly rdram, i honestly dont remember)
1 16x dvd drive
1 52x cd drive
1 copy of windows 98 se
1 copy of windows xp with service pack 3
1 copy of windows 95
and if i can find it, 1 copy of windows ME


im looking into buying a new case and DEFINITELY need a new power supply and a couple of heavy duty fans and heatsinks, i'll probably salvage whatever soundblaster card i have in my old compaq card, unless you guys can recommend something better


my question is, is pentium 3 the way to go? also will my graphics card be able to max out all post 2001 games that im looking for? or should i look into buying a voodoo card? should i look for a card that supports open gl & glide? im looking to play at absolute max settings, with everything turned up and as smooth as possible



games im most looking forward to playing

grim fandango
quest for glory series 1-5
fallout series
command and conquer series
giants
kknd
commandoes
xcom series
deus ex
civ series (maybe)
jedi knight
Planescape Torment
secret of monkey island
zork series
journeyman



pretty much all the best and critically acclaimed games of the era that i missed out on for one reason or another, how should i go about this? any and all help would be greatly appreciated, thanks

NayusDante
06-26-2010, 12:43 AM
Giants: Citizen Kabuto came with my GeForce 4, and seemed about right for that. I'd get a Voodoo 3 for your retro rig, and play some of those newer 3D games on your current rig.

I personally like using 95 over 98, for compatibility. If you're playing the Journeyman series, Legacy of Time requires DirectX hardware acceleration to be disabled on 98, otherwise there's bad popping in the audio. Not an issue with 95. If you're not going online with this rig, 98 or ME won't give you much benefit over 95.

Be sure to use a CD-audio cable, because many games from that era play music from the CD drive, rather than reading the tracks over the IDE cable.

The most system-intensive game on your list, aside from Giants, is probably Deus Ex. You may want to play that one with a DirectX 10 renderer plugin on a current system, but a Voodoo 3 should be fine in Glide mode.

Jorpho
06-26-2010, 10:03 AM
I personally like using 95 over 98, for compatibility. If you're playing the Journeyman series, Legacy of Time requires DirectX hardware acceleration to be disabled on 98, otherwise there's bad popping in the audio. Not an issue with 95.There are a number of possible explanations for that. Perhaps the bad popping in the audio occurred because you were using WDM drivers for your soundcard rather than VXD (which are the only option under 95). Or perhaps it was a DirectX 9 or 8.1 issue (since DirectX 8.0a is the last version supported by 95). I really doubt the problem was caused by some feature inherent to Windows 98.


games im most looking forward to playingThose can all be quite easily run in XP, y'know. Building a whole new computer for them is serious overkill.

You're going to want to read the definitive Torment install guide (http://thunderpeel2001.blogspot.com/2009/01/planescape-torment-fully-modded.html) in any case.

LaughingMAN.S9
06-26-2010, 02:45 PM
na the main reasoning behind it is that i already have all if not most of the spare parts lying around from other computers i've had over the years lol



basically the main reason i wanted to build it was just for pretty much all da classic lucasarts adventure games i missed growing up, most of the games after that tend to be closer to the millenium


game i really need to play is grim fandango and quest for glory v, both maxed out with as little problems as possible, the other games are just bonuses (system shock 2 and that one game where you're like a god or something, black & white i think it was called? )


if i could those games running perfectly under xp and with my nvidia gts 2 card, i'll go that route, do u think i should just stick to what i have then? or just get a voodoo 3 card cheap and build a windows me/98 machine???

Jorpho
06-26-2010, 04:23 PM
Are you are familiar with ScummVM (http://www.scummvm.org)? That won't help with Grim Fandango, but a Google search immediately turns up this page (http://www.sierrahelp.com/Patches-Updates/Patches-Updates-Games/QuestForGloryUpdates.html#QFG5Win2k). Relevant patechs for Q4G V are also easily found (http://www.sierrahelp.com/Patches-Updates/Patches-Updates-Games/QuestForGloryUpdates.html#QFG5Win2k). They're not exactly obscure games and you can easily imagine that many have eagerly sought to run it on newer machines already.

NayusDante
06-26-2010, 04:31 PM
From the archived support page at Red Orb:


Garbled or Popping Sounds Using Windows® 98
At times, when Journeyman Project® 3: Legacy of Time™ is used in a Windows® 98 environment, popping sounds are heard. Also, the sounds can be distorted or garbled. An improper sound setting can cause this condition. Changing the hardware acceleration setting in the Advanced Audio Properties window should allow the sound to play normally.

Ed Oscuro
06-26-2010, 05:19 PM
Quake 3 Team Arena, Undying
These two I've played recently on XP (well, not Team Arena, but regular Quake III and the HeadHunters 3 mod) with no problems. Quake III does even better with ioquake3 than with the original executables, check it out.

It just takes some tweaking to get working right on widescreen - I spent a good half hour / hour trying to get a working configuration, and almost gave up when I didn't realize that ioquake3 puts the configs in a different folder (see the Readme), so the config in your old Quake III mod data directory goes unused. (It seemed to carry over the regular Quake III one somehow though).

Undying also can use a lot of tweaking; the low color-count and terrible fullscreen effects (like the Haste spell, my favorite, is basically an ugly gamma upper) can't be overcome, but you can still do a LOT to make it look great. Only problems here are widescreen (you lose a bit of the journal pages) and you have to be aware that changing the "curved surfaces" settings is not good for the game.

I couldn't get the first Legacy of Kain games working on XP - certainly not the Diablo-like first one (eh what do I care about that though, but not getting the one with Raziel working makes me sad, I remember that from a PSX demo).

Man, I still want to play Journeyman Project 3...actually, I should start with the first, I know.

cyrax151
07-01-2010, 09:25 AM
Street Fighter Alpha
Street Fighter Alpha 2
C&C Red Alert 2
Twisted Metal 2
JetMoto
Fallout Tactics
WarGames
ShadowMan
MDK2
Clive Barker's Undying
System Shock 2

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