Do you remember…

Today, while I was sitting in class and my mind wandered off to the past times. I was experimenting drawing with a ball-point pen instead of the colorful felt-tipped pens that I usually use. I like how the result looks like more of a sketch:

It was the titles that I wrote on the pictures that really got me thinking about my childhood. Bowser was a picture of a dog in one of my sister’s favorite books. My father always read the book to us, and then when we got to the picture of the dog, he would ask “Where’s Bowser?” and we would have to point to Bowser. But Kitty Kat Kotty stemmed from a completely different source entirely.

The computer games of old, while being less graphically detailed, were awesome in their own way. There was one game in particular that I have vivid memories of was Rodent Revenge:

The trick is to try to trap the kitties in a 1×1 cell by moving blocks. Then they turn into blocks of cheese. My dad always called the cats “kitty cat kotties” (or some spelling variation of that) and I was always traumatised whenever the cats actually got to the mouse and ate it which would inevitably happen at some point. I have never liked getting eaten by anything. Still don’t. I did some searching today, and it turns out that many of the old programs are available for download online for free. Click here to download the version that I found.

There were also some other games that I was always scared of and I have managed to find copies of them online as well. SkiFree always traumatized me as a child because there was this monster thing that always comes and eats you before you get to the end of the hill:

Yeah. He still scares me. I also have distinct memories of my brother making me watch the monster eat the skiier. *shivers*

There was another game that we played ALL the time as children. We even got together and crowded around the computer screen. Together as a family we managed to solve every level. That game was Chip’s Challenge. I wasn’t actually that great a help in the solving of the problems. But I do remember loving to watch. And I always was shocked when the monsters ate Chip. I still am actually. I played this a couple months ago, and when Chip got eaten I seriously jumped and screeched a little bit. I surprised everybody around me and they all wanted to know what exactly I was doing.

There were a lot of other awesome computer games that we used to play.

R.I.P. Microsoft Puzzle Collection

This included Rat Poker, Mixed Genetics, Fringer, and other awesome games. In my opinion, it was one of the best pieces of software that Microsoft has ever come out with. Way better than the games that come preinstalled on Windows 7. But, unfortunately, unless you are in the mood to do some major software tweaking, you can kiss playing any of these games goodbye. After 13 years, the software is STILL not free for download online. You can still get the demo version, which I downloaded just to see those rats dancing around again. But the .exe file isn’t compatible with the current Microsoft Windows operating system. I managed to get the demo version running in Ubuntu with the help of Wine, but the music component didn’t work. Which makes me very mad at closed source software. Look at that! Excellent games going down the drain simply because they are closed source. If they were open source, not only would they be free for download, but someone would have taken the time to update the programs to allow them to run in Windows Vista and 7.

There are two other programs that I would like to mention. They are CD games, so they are not available for free any where online (legally anyway). The first one was actually a trending topic on twitter a couple of weeks ago:

Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?

I have very fond memories of sitting at the computer with my brother, sister, and father, and trying to figure out who had committed the crime. It was very educational, and very entertaining. We had an old set of World Book Encyclopedias and we used those to try and figure out the answers to the clues that the witnesses told us. I think that was really the only time we ever really used those Encyclopedias.

The other CD game I used to play was Oregon Trail:

I literally spent hours playing this game when I was in 7th or 8th grade. I even had a little journal in which I kept track of all the food that I had bought and all of the clothes. It got to the point where I could always get families to the other side of the country with nobody dying.

I have never been much of a gamer, but those games that I did play, I played over and over and over again. Some of these include:

Age of Empires, The Logical Journey of the Zoombinis, Midtown Madness, Bejeweled, and Solsuite

What were your favorite computer games when you were a kid?

Also, a shout out to my sister! She put a picture of a comic that I drew for her on her blog.

Click for the original download locations of Chip’s Challenge, SkiFree, and Rodent’s Revenge.