This is the twelfth entry of the [2019 with DOS games] column, a mini-compendium of the mandatory MS-DOS games ever released. For a big part of my life I’ve been a PC games player and I had tons of old games to play with back in the 90s. This is my homage to them.
The rules are simple. MS-DOS has been created in 1981 and was still available in computer until the early Noughties. However the release of Windows 95 acted as a break and everything before immediately becaome. So I can fairly tell that the DOS era goes from 1981 until 1985. [2019 with DOS games] will feature every two weeks a selection of three games, one for every five-year period (1981-1985, 1986-1990 and 1991-1995) in alphabetilac order that I consider either important, ground-breaking or simply fun and easy to play. I’ll try to consider only DOS-exclusive games or in case games spread on different platforms that have the PC version as a flagship. No claim of completeness, I’m not a human encyclopedia (unfortunately…). Let’s go with letter L.
Lode Runner (1983)
- Developer: Douglas Smith
- Publisher: Brøderbund Software
- Genre: Puzzle, Platform
Brøderbund Software is one of those companies that seems like they can’t do anything wrong. For a platformers lover like I am, Lode Runner is something to drool onto: 150 levels, vast environments and lots of fun. One of the best things about Lode Runner is its longevity since most of the versions of the game feature a editor so you and your friends can create new levels and challenge each others.
The game, born from the minf of Doug Smith that sadly passed away in 2014, was a great success: computer game of the year in 1984 at the Arkie Awards, #1 game for Apple II awarded by Time in 2010 second best selling C64 game in 1987 and by 1989 had sold more that 250000 copies.
Leisure Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards (1987)
- Developer: Sierra On-Line
- Publisher: Sierra On-Line
- Genre: Graphic Adventure
This where it all began. The series of Leisure Suit Larry is one of the longest still running (the last game, Wet Dreams Don’t Dry came out in 2018) and back then was one of the first amongh the “mainstream” games to tackle adult situations with irony, the same irony that always distiginguished Sierra. The protagonist, Larry Laffer is your usual 40-something awkward man who attempts, without success, to seduce beautiful women.
The idea of the game came from Softporn Adventure, another early Sierra game, but this time we have a text/graphic adventure that made use of the AGI, developed by Sierra itself.
Lure of the Temptress (1992)
- Developer: Revolution Software
- Publisher: Konami
- Genre: Graphic Adventure
I had two periods in my life when I used to play everyday Lure of the Temptress: first when I got my Dutch Flyer back in 1996 and then in the early Noughties when it was re-released on a companion CD in a mag I was reading back then (that sadly doesn’t exist anymore) after the game became freeware in 2003. Both of time I loved the details, the verbose descriptions and the fact that for me, playing a non-LucasArts point and click was something that made that game REALLY good.
One thing that I discovered only in my adulthood is that the game (at least its setting) is based on the Speccy game Dun Darach (I game I’m willing to find because is a Speccy game and because I love gaelic language). The game has been praised by the critics with reviews all round 90% and it did very well commercially since it reached #1 in the Britsh Gallup chart.
As always here are some honorable mentions:
- Leather Goddesses of Phobos (1986)
- Lords of Conquest (1986)
- Legacy of the Ancients (1987)
- The Lost Crown of Queen Anne (1987)
- The Last Ninja (1988)
- Lancelot (1988)
- Last Half of Darkness (1989)
- Legend of the Red Dragon (1989)
- Lords of the Rising Sun (1989)
- Legend of Faerghail (1990)
- Lightspeed (1990)
- Loom (1990)
- Lord of Chaos (1990)
- Lemmings (1991)
- Legend (1992)
- The Legend of Kyrandia: Fables and Fiends (1992)
- Legends of Valour (1992)
- Lethal Weapon (1992)
- The Legacy: Realm of Terror (1992)
- Lotus III: The Ultimate Challenge (1993)
- The Labyrinth of Time (1993)
- Lands of Lore: The Throne of Chaos (1993)
- Litil Divil (1993)
- Last Action Hero (1994)
- Lords of the Realm (1994)
There are plenty of games today to talk about. Starting from the beginning an honorable mention goes to 1988 game The Last Ninja (you know my love for isometric games), but above all an honorable mention goes to the point and click game Loom by LucasArts, another great adventure I used to play along with all the others made by Lucas.
Another great game of the 90s is Lemmings, although is a game I’ve never played regularly; on the other hand I’ve played a lot with Last Action Hero because in the first part it remind me of GTA, a game I love.
Lotus II, along with the first Need for Speed is a game that has always been installed on my old PC, mainly because it reminded me OutRun, a game that unfortunately I’ve played on the arcade cabinet just a couple of times.
Previous entries in this column:
- [2019 with DOS games] The Ancient Art of War / Altered Destiny / Alone in the Dark
- [2019 with DOS games] The Bard’s Tale / Barbarian / Betrayal at Krondor
- [2019 with DOS games] Castle Wolfenstein / Cadaver / The Chaos Engine
- [2019 with DOS games] Dragonworld / Dangerous Dave / Doom
- [2019 with DOS games] Enchanter / Elvira: Mistress of the Dark / Eye of the Beholder
- [2019 with DOS games] F-15 Strike Eagle / Future Wars: Adventure in Time / Flashback
- [2019 with DOS games] GATO / Gobliiins / Guilty
- [2019 with DOS games] The Hobbit / Hero’s Quest: So You Wanto to Be a Hero / Heretic
- [2019 with DOS games] In Search of the Most Amazing Thing / Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: The Graphic Adventure / Innocent Until Caught
- [2019 with DOS games] Jumpman / Journey / James Pond 2 – Codename: RoboCod
- [2019 with DOS games] King’s Quest / Knight Orc / Knights of Xentar