If you have fond memories of floppy disks and command prompts - or just need ever more diversions to fill your days - then don’t miss the Internet Archive’s massive web repository of MS-DOS games.
Launched this week, the MS-DOS Software Library compiles more than 2,300 decades-old games from Microsoft’s early operating system, all of which can be played for free within your web browser. And the selection is pretty incredible.
Even at a glance, you’ll find a wealth of beloved classics: Prince of Persia, SimCity, Maniac Mansion, Metal Gear (below), Street Fighter II, Golden Axe, Arkanoid, Micro Machines, Pac-Man, ZZT, Frogger, Tapper, and Microsoft Flight Simulator. And that’s just a tiny sample of what’s available.
Of course, there’s a fair amount of forgettable junk in the collection, as well as some knock-offs of bigger games; it’s not exactly curated. And to that extent, some games won’t work as well as others, and the list has already shrunken a bit since early this week. (Tip: Super Street Fighter II ran terribly for us, but regular ol’ Street Fighter II is fine.)
And because the Internet Archive has an exemption from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), it’s free to host these archival copies of software that may not survive much longer on the floppies they originally shipped on.
Whatever the case, it’s your gain: stop being productive already, and go enjoy some classic games.