we're in such a weird place as far as PC "retrogaming" goes. anything made before 1998 or so can be pretty easily played, occasionally straight up but usually with a variety of emulation options, but from like 99 to 2007? a tremendous number of games just won't run right
unlike the older games, which won't run at all on modern windows, the middle-era games often run but have weird problems
the most irritating ones for me are scaling and display modes. neverwinter nights 2 will run on windows 10 just fine (the gog edition anyway) but it's so hard to play it the way I play modern games.
i don't want to run anything in exclusive fullscreen anymore. it never should have existed (I still don't understand what it is) but it's even more frustrating now because i have three monitors, and windows is too dumb to handle this right
in the cases where it doesn't fullscreen on the wrong monitor, it still jostles and fucks up all my windows on all displays even if the resolution *isn't changing.* fullscreening at the native res of my monitor *still* makes everything hiccup. fuck!
i can't alt-tab out because every single time i do it it jostles and fucks everything up, and i've even had system hangs before by switching display resolutions back and forth too quickly
i don't play games the way i did when i was 19. i don't open the game and just stay in it for six hours. i alt tab out constantly to do other things, so this behaviro isn't an option for me at all
a lot of stuff released in the early 2000s just freaks out at the display subsystem in windows 10, who knows why. complaining about bit depth issues that don't exist, running the intro movies but then the display just stops updating while the menu music plays
i have other computers, i could put windows 7 on something, but again - i do not want the game to be My Current And Only Task. i want it to be a program, running on my computer, like modern games are
stuff like dgvoodoo is a step in the right direction - what we essentially need for these games to remain playable is a high level emulation of windows XP. not *just* directx, something deeper and more thorough.
sign my change dot org petition for microsoft to release a new WIndows XP On Windows
I was drunk when I wrote this thread and forgot to finish talking about the technical issues so anyway
even if you *want* to run in fullscreen, there's Problems. the native res of your monitor isn't 1024x768 anymore. Some games will run at arbitrary higher resolutions, but many have weird problems.
For instance, NWN2 and Dragon's Dogma I think were two I recently tried that will run in an ultrawide res but get the scaling wrong, so part of the UI falls off the bottom of the screen.
Ultrawide is a real edge case of course so putting it aside, you can set the game to a 16:9 res and it'll run, but on a 2k monitor the UI elements are unusably small.
I found a mod that increases the size of UI elements but it looks pretty janky and doesn't work for everything, so the minimap for instance is a postage stamp in the corner of the screen
Then there's the games that won't run at higher resolutions at all. Nox for instance is stuck at 1024, and your monitor will inevitably do a crappy bilinear upscale to its native res. It looks pretty sad
I wish windows offered the option "just take whatever this program is outputting, nearest-neighbor scale it to native res, and put it in a borderless window."
The other stuff I didn't mention was just sludge along the lines of "game won't launch" "crashes when you hit new game" sort of stuff
It's also just... really a lot more painful *playing* games from that era than one tends to remember. oops, your pleasant memories of 2000s RPGs didn't include "nobody had figured out waypoint markers yet"
so you might think "oh I'll give nwn a try, I liked it 17 years ago" and when you get in you discover that finding objectives is actually incredibly tedious
sure, we expect this from old RPGs, but 2002 doesn't register as old the way 1996 does for me. it's still a windows game! it's 3d accelerated! yeah, and it has terrible frustrating controls because seminal advances in the art had not yet been released
I played a bunch of games in the diablo/baldurs gate kind of mode a couple days ago and found that all of them required infuriating pixel hunting to find and pick up items on the ground. loot collection has been tremendously streamlined now but it used to be awful
footnote: it appears that Microsoft quietly added something called "Fullscreen Optimizations" to windows last year that does in fact transparently turn exclusive fullscreen games into borderless windows, but as far as I can tell this isn't working for me
several people have suggested running windows xp in a VM - great idea, I've done that for several games, but depending on their input method it sometimes doesn't work. Nox runs perfectly but the mouse coordinates are read incorrectly, making it impossible to control.
and of course graphics are generally low pri for VMs, so some games will do fine while others that seem like they shouldn't be very taxing won't run acceptably or at all

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More from @gravislizard

25 Nov 20
here's an opinion i've had about retrocomputing / nerd culture for a long long time
the overwhelming majority of "cool" computers that everyone "wishes they had" were created to perform dreadfully boring tasks, by people who wished they were anywhere else, in the service of people who did a ton of coke and left our economy a smoking husk that can't support life
you do not want a cray-1. all they are is calc.exe but very fast and you can't even touch the buttons, you have to write a program that touches them. the purpose of a 'supercomputer' is to sit humming for 24 days and then produce a single integer, or 25 million integers
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24 Nov 20
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20 Oct 20
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Read 21 tweets
18 Oct 20
i'm watching the first episode of house m.d. out of curiosity but almost the entire episode is in monochrome other than flesh tones and i swear to god the house m.d. i watched on hulu in 2007 didn't look like this. i love the revisionist history of rereleases
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the last movies i watched were 300 and sin city and they had more life and saturation in them than this. this is *not* what i watched in 2008.
Read 18 tweets
27 Sep 20
occasionally i try to play a diablolike - i apparently bought grim dawn ages ago? i have no memory of this. but like. do you like this game? i have a question: when you look at this, do you... see something? not just a blur?
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