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Most of you know what DOSBox is, but for those who hear this name for the very first time we're coming to the rescue - DOSBox is a freely available, cross platform emulation software that allows you to run DOS based programs and games on modern operating systems. Thanks to this great piece of code many DOS based games on GOG.com run smoothly on your modern, lightning fast and powerful PCs!

Qbix, one of the creators of DOSBox, had couple important questions about GOG that needed to be answered, so he sat down with some staff members and pulled the answers out from them ;). On DOSBox.com you can read the whole thing.
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Red_Avatar: Most of these have even more than two!
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Miaghstir: Although I'm pretty sure Myst was never a DOS game, instead built on the Mac from the beginning (using Hypercard) then ported to Windows 95.
Actually, it was Windows 3.1 which I counted as DOS since I run it in DOSBox under Windows 3.1 and a modern PC won't run it anymore because it's 16 bit. However, it was just one CD ;) I was thinking about Riven. Plenty of other examples though - Imperium Galactica, Broken Sword 1&2, etc.
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Skystrider: For example, many companies do not have their original master copies anymore. We at GOG often have to find those artifacts by ourselves, either by buying games over Ebay and other auction websites, or simply by using the archives of our own staff, who affectionately kept those at their grandma’s place or more simply in their messy cupboards :) The same rule applies (even more) to the free goodies we are bundling every game on GOG with. Finding artworks for Space Quest 1-2-3 was far from being a sinecure for example, but nothing is impossible for our product manager!

Why not use your community, GOG? I'm sure a lot of people here would be glad to help out! For free, even!

You know, I could buy a scanner, perhaps email some old manuals, strategy guides and other extras to the GOG crew. I am a collector after all; I never throw anything, unless it is perfectly useless, and games never are! As a result, I got some hundreds of boxed games from throughout the 80's and 90's, all still intact with CD's, covers, feelies and all. They are all just sitting there now, so it could be good to put them to some use.

Let me know what you think. I don't claim to have nearly every game out there, but I might still be able to help out if you are interested.

I'll include some sample pictures from my collection. It is all a bit messy right now, so pardon the dust. There is more, too.. ;)
wow! that's a lot of games, perhaps you could mail me some of your games, i promise i will take good care of them, i could even send you pictures of them from time to time.
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Miaghstir: What'd be neat would be to run Win3.1 software (specifically games, for relevance to GOG) without requiring a Win3.1 license.
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GameRager: Yes, but wouldn't reverse engineering win 3.1 be illegal anyways? Or is it legal somehow?
If you're implementing from scratch, you're not breaking copyright. In US you may be infringing some patents, not a problem outside NAFTA.
Running Windows 3 games is not as simple as that. Quite a few of them need some specific libraries to be present in the host system - WinG, for instance - which also tend to be proprietary.

As for the part about "changing mentalities", I disagree - once you've picked it up and started selling it, the software is no longer "abandoned" (not sold, not supported, not enforced).
Abandonware means "preservation of abandoned software", and any website actually following the ideology behind it should direct its' users to legal means of obtaining the software whenever possible.
The existence of GOG and similar services is a win-win situation for everyone. :)
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HereForTheBeer: Business question, and maybe I missed this in the interview: Does DOSBox get a small slice of the revenue for the sales of games that rely on the emulator?
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tejozaszaszas: No, DosBox crew gets money only by donations.
I do hope that gog.com gives a small slice of the revenue back to DOSBox and ScummVM. Can somebody from gog.com verify that? I'd be happier to know a portion of the money goes to them :).

One more thing: DOSBox and ScummVM are cross platform, so gog.com could easily expand to Mac and Linux platforms at (almost) no cost. I know that it is not hard to do that on our own, but it would be nice to officially support Linux and Mac. This can be done in two ways:
1. Provide installers for the other platforms. (This is probably complicated and pricey.)

2. Work with the DOSBox and ScummVM teams to have a canonical packaging system for games. So for Linux/mac the users would just download the non binary package and DOSBox or ScummVM would take over.

I think that would be pretty cool. Does gog.com / DOSBox / ScummVM have any plans along these lines?
Glad you all liked the interview
Post edited January 14, 2011 by Qbix
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voulg: I do hope that gog.com gives a small slice of the revenue back to DOSBox and ScummVM. Can somebody from gog.com verify that? I'd be happier to know a portion of the money goes to them :).
Last time I heard - from one DOSBox developers, no less - the answer was "No". I don't have any reason to believe this has changed since then.
The GPL license means that anyone can use DOSBox for commercial purposes without paying the development team a single penny.