Thursday, August 30, 2012

DOS Games in the Cloud - NaClBox

By now you have probably read somewhere or other about the new My-NaClBox Beta which allows you to play DOS classics in your Chrome browser window!

The site is basically DOSbox wrapped up and stored in the cloud. If you are lucky enough to be given a beta membership, the service will let you upload your own game files to the NaClBox servers and play your games anywhere anytime!

Being born in the 80's, my childhood was riddled with NES and DOS games. As such, I am a huge fan of classic DOS and hope that this project allows more people to experience some of the excitement that I had for computers as a kid. With the recent release of Duke Nukem Forever, how many youngsters have ever played Duke Nukem 3D? How many even know it existed? How about Duke Nukem I/II the platform shooters? Playing these games is a lesson in computer history. Game design has progressed so much in the last 25 years that today's youth are mostly unaware of many title's humble roots.

Playing these old titles might help to elucidate just how high the hopes for computers once were. In the days when graphics and sound quality were minimal, computer gamers looked to the future and easily envisioned a time when virtual reality would be as common as making a telephone call. Anyone who spent days trying to successfully initiate a multiplayer game in DOS by lan or modem, knows how amazing both Xbox live and the Playstation network are.

The games of the DOS era are outdated novelties, no one is arguing that, but they are still really damn fun!


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