It is so great to have in-house tech support in the form of one husband and two sons. My poor little 7-year-old laptop has seen its better days, so John ordered a new one and Ross has been hot to install all my Electric Quilt software, get files transferred, set up bookmarks, etc. I’ve been procrastinating because I really need to do some housekeeping in the form of deleting old documents, organizing files and photos, etc., and none of this is fun. I know, I don’t have to like it; I just have to do it.
After dinner tonight, I asked Ross if he still had this old kids’ game on his computer called Things from Space. It was an arcade game within an adventure game called Spy Fox the boys played when they were younger, and it was a blast (pun intended). We all loved it. Unlike today’s games, there are no people and no blood. Just asteroids, satellites and space ships that you blast with three different types of weapons that come and go throughout the game.
Ross said he didn’t have the game anymore, but he could get it, so I invited him to post about it on my blog today. Here he is:
Hello! I guess I’m supposed to be guest blogging for my mother today? My name is Ross. I’m sure Mom has talked about me in recent posts (like me eating pasta and watching Burn Notice on my iPod. Yeah, that was me.) So right after dinner mom gave me a weird request.
Mom: Hey, you should get Things from Space on my computer!
Me: Are you serious? You know that game is really, really, really old?
Mom: Yep. Get it anyway.
So in all of my techsavyness, (yes that’s a word because I just made it up) I went on a hunt for an emulator and the game files. We threw the CD away a while ago because I stopped playing it when I was about 10. I eventually found the files and the ScummVM emulator.
You may be wondering what an emulator does, so I will give you the non-confusing explanation. This game is really old, and Mom just got a new laptop with Windows 7. Spy Fox is a newer DOS game so it won’t work on Windows (just in case you haven’t been keeping up, the world has moved away from DOS) so emulators in turn magically make it work. Here is how:
Step 1: The emulator takes the instruction from the RAM (random access memory).
Step 2: The emulator has to interpret what the CPU (central processing unit) is telling the RAM to do. Think of it like a chain of command. The boss tells the supervisor what to do, and the supervisor tells the employees what to do.
Step 3: Perform the operation taken from the RAM.
And that’s the basic process how an emulator works.
Here is what I had to do to get the game working.
After picking the downloaded files, just click choose and that’s it!
And now mom can spend countless hours playing a game that was released in 1999.