[Edit] 2014-08-27: Changed some things about ag-odalaunch. More information below. 2014-08-28: Made it clear that I was talking about an A1200 when playing on a classic Amiga.
Remember Doom? Of course you do. This first person shooter (FPS) may be the one game that killed off the Amiga. When the Amiga was concieved in 1982 sidescrollers was the big thing. May Miner and his team made sure it would be a killer in this field. In 1993, more and more people was looking for a home computer and despite the higher price they went and bought a PC; the same machine they used at work. This might have started a fight with their kids when games came into mind. If the Amiga was still cool the parents might have bought an Amiga instead. But then came Doom and it was a game changer. Now both parents and kids wanted a PC. It was a devastating blow. Several companies tried with varied success to compete with Doom by making their own clones for the Amiga. But it was too late. Those FPS games might have delayed the switch to PC for several Amiga owners but few PC owners switched to Amiga. Doom was simply too good. It was the original every other games was compared to. Despite a lot of begging from Amiga users to ID Software to port the game they simply didn’t see the point.
Porting Doom to Amiga later became a holy cow for Amigans who wanted to prove that the Amiga still could. Technically Doom was not out of Amigas reach. With a rather cheap 68030 based acceleration card and some extra RAM it would be quite playable on an A1200. There are today several working ports of Doom to classic Amiga, something made easier when the source code was released in 1997. By then Quake had been released (in 1996 by the same company) and that game was way out of Amigas reach. Only with expensive hardware like a 68060 or PPC acceleration card, plenty of RAM and a graphic card could you play that game. Quake was eventually released on Amiga in 1998 by ClickBOOM, but by then people had lost interest in proving that Amiga still could. If Quake was the last nail in the coffin, then Doom was the 3 before that. Amiga had been dying off for a while even before Doom, but that game removed the Amiga as the number one gaming computer and put the PC there instead.
The reason Doom killed of the Amiga was, quite simply, because it’s a really good game. I remember going to my friends house to play it all the time. I still think it’s fun to play, over 20 years later. And of course, there are several working ports for MorphOS. A couple of days ago BSzili ported the latest version of Odamex (0.70). And we are going to test it today.
First, download the port here (there are also ports for AmigaOS 4 and AROS at his homepage). Then unpack it and place the folder where you want it. Next you need some working WAD files. These files contain the game data you need to play anything. Not all WAD files works with Odamex, but In have tried these sucessfully:
Doom3.wad works but is quite buggy. The rest work without a hitch. The first four on the list are commercial and you need to either get yourself a legal copy of them or download them illegally and risk lenghty prison terms. Or the very least a slap on the wrist. You can also download Freedoom which gives you all new graphics but more or less the same game, for free:
There are plenty of fun looking WAD files out there, but these are the only ones I have gotten to work.
Just copy the WAD files to where you want. I copied them all to the Odamex drawer, except the Freedoom version that I gave it’s own drawer. Apparently, it needs to be named doom.wad to work so it needs it’s own drawer.
Next we start Shell and go to the Odamex drawer. Type: odamex -iwad name.wad or odamex -iwad freedoom/doom.wad. You can also just double click on the Odamex icon. It will then start the Doom2.wad file automatically. There is also another icon called ag-odalaunch that makes it possible to battle with others online. But since that isn’t my thing I havn’t bothered trying it. Type like it says above and press enter.
[Edit] BZsili corrected me here and told me that you could use ag-odalaunch to start single games as well. You can either select Action –> Run Offline and then chose the WAD you want to play. Or you can just press the big yellow circle in order to do the same thing.
The game will start in it’s own window. The default options was not optimal for me so I changed them in options. The good thing about Odamex is that if you change setting in one game (.wad) it will apply for every other games as well. I got some flickering when using non-32 bit screen in 640×480 in fullscreen but changing to 32 bit in 1024×768 (Video Mode option) solved it for me. I also changed the controls to suit me better. Pretty simple. Now it’s time to play!
The games workes without any problems and I have not had a single crash. I also went and tried the classic cheats idkfa (all weapons and keys) and iddqd (God mode) and they worked as they should (I used to love to cheat!). Yes, Doom still is a very good game indeed, and when I play it I remember why PC users loved it so, and why Amigans used to fear it so much.
Don’t forget that this is the last week you can donate to the developers foundraing that is going on at WArMUp. Go there and donate some spare change!