32 votes

what are your favorite low-end or old games?

What are you favorite games that could be played on a potato?

I've got a windows tablet and wondering what people's favorite games are that I could try out

59 comments

  1. [16]
    MimicSquid
    Link
    If you can install old system emulators on a windows tablet, pick up an SNES or NES emulator. There's hundreds of good games from the heyday of Nintendo's dominance over the console space.

    If you can install old system emulators on a windows tablet, pick up an SNES or NES emulator. There's hundreds of good games from the heyday of Nintendo's dominance over the console space.

    16 votes
    1. [3]
      Deimos
      Link Parent
      The site Racketboy has a series of Games That Defined Retro Gaming Machines articles that are, in my opinion, the best lists I've seen for "essential" games to play on older systems. Here are the...

      The site Racketboy has a series of Games That Defined Retro Gaming Machines articles that are, in my opinion, the best lists I've seen for "essential" games to play on older systems.

      Here are the NES and SNES ones:

      There's also a series of Hidden Gems for all the systems if you want to go into slightly more obscure games.

      7 votes
      1. [2]
        dubteedub
        Link Parent
        That's a solid list of NES games. The only one missing for me is the original Guantlet. Those ominous sounds of GREEN WIZARD IS ABOIT TO DIE and RED WARRIOR NEEDS FOOD BADLY are forever ingrained...

        That's a solid list of NES games. The only one missing for me is the original Guantlet.

        Those ominous sounds of GREEN WIZARD IS ABOIT TO DIE and RED WARRIOR NEEDS FOOD BADLY are forever ingrained in my consciousness

        3 votes
        1. Amarok
          Link Parent
          You have found a runestone! I loved those games. Damn fine four player action as well, great geek-party game.

          You have found a runestone!

          I loved those games. Damn fine four player action as well, great geek-party game.

          1 vote
    2. [10]
      mithranqueen
      Link Parent
      SNES rpgs are some of my favorite games. I'm sure it's partly nostalgia, but I think these are probably still worth it: *Secret of Mana *Earthbound *Lufia *Seiken Densetsu *Illusion of Gaia

      SNES rpgs are some of my favorite games. I'm sure it's partly nostalgia, but I think these are probably still worth it:

      *Secret of Mana
      *Earthbound
      *Lufia
      *Seiken Densetsu
      *Illusion of Gaia

      5 votes
      1. [6]
        Fin
        Link Parent
        What sort of sacrilege is this leaving off final fantasy 4 and 6?!

        What sort of sacrilege is this leaving off final fantasy 4 and 6?!

        6 votes
        1. [4]
          Krael
          Link Parent
          Nothing compared to the sheer fucking blasphemy of leaving out Chrono Trigger.

          Nothing compared to the sheer fucking blasphemy of leaving out Chrono Trigger.

          11 votes
          1. [3]
            JayJay
            Link Parent
            Heathens, there is but one true god, and that god is Terranigma.

            Heathens, there is but one true god, and that god is Terranigma.

            2 votes
            1. [2]
              Krael
              Link Parent
              While Terranigma is considered to be divinely inspired, it's not part of the church's official scripture. Please keep your heresy to yourself, or I'll be forced to call the inquisitors.

              While Terranigma is considered to be divinely inspired, it's not part of the church's official scripture. Please keep your heresy to yourself, or I'll be forced to call the inquisitors.

              3 votes
              1. demifiend
                Link Parent
                What about Romancing SaGa and Shin Megami Tensei?!

                What about Romancing SaGa and Shin Megami Tensei?!

                2 votes
        2. mithranqueen
          Link Parent
          Ha, honestly I figured those were "obvious" enough that they didn't need to be called out :)

          Ha, honestly I figured those were "obvious" enough that they didn't need to be called out :)

          2 votes
      2. pseudolobster
        Link Parent
        If you enjoyed Earthbound, I can't recommend highly enough that you get a GBA emulator and find a translation of Mother 3.

        If you enjoyed Earthbound, I can't recommend highly enough that you get a GBA emulator and find a translation of Mother 3.

        3 votes
      3. MimicSquid
        Link Parent
        Don't forget Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy III (VI), though those are such big names they're not easily forgotten. For less well known games, I'd add Lufia II, which happened to throw a full...

        Don't forget Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy III (VI), though those are such big names they're not easily forgotten.

        For less well known games, I'd add Lufia II, which happened to throw a full roguelike with limited saved progression into the middle of the RPG. There were some cool, weird things happening in RPGs in that era.

        I think that aside from the nostalgia, the SNES era hit a sweet spot where the graphics were interesting and intelligible without being so complex as to pull away from writing and game design getting the major focus. Since there was only so pretty it could be, they had to do really interesting stories.

        3 votes
      4. Amarok
        Link Parent
        The worst blasphemy is that no one talks about Phantasy Star. ;) Ok, RPG buffs. If you've never played that series, start with PS1 on a Master System emulator. I dare anyone to finish it without...

        The worst blasphemy is that no one talks about Phantasy Star. ;)

        Ok, RPG buffs. If you've never played that series, start with PS1 on a Master System emulator. I dare anyone to finish it without looking up everything online. Get a pen and graph paper pad for the dungeons, you'll be needing them badly by the end. Save often (there are no autosaves). Might be the first console RPG that featured 3d animated dungeon exploration (at a pre-Wolfenstein level, but still, props for trying guys.)

    3. [2]
      what
      Link Parent
      In the realm of emulators, I also recommend ScummVM. You can install it on pretty much any platform (Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, maybe iOS, etc), and it lets you play hundreds of old point and...

      In the realm of emulators, I also recommend ScummVM. You can install it on pretty much any platform (Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, maybe iOS, etc), and it lets you play hundreds of old point and click adventure games. I recently played Secret of Monkey Island on my 3DS with it and it was a blast.

      2 votes
      1. nonesuchluck
        Link Parent
        Lot of those games play great with touchscreen only on ScummVM, since we're talking about a tablet.

        Lot of those games play great with touchscreen only on ScummVM, since we're talking about a tablet.

        1 vote
  2. [2]
    CALICO
    Link
    I will really never get tired of Galaga, hands down my favorite arcade game. KotOR as well. That one was my first RPG. It's lightweight enough that there's even a version of it for Android.

    I will really never get tired of Galaga, hands down my favorite arcade game.
    KotOR as well. That one was my first RPG. It's lightweight enough that there's even a version of it for Android.

    11 votes
    1. Dot
      Link Parent
      Kotor 2 is amazing and I think everyone and their mother should play it.

      Kotor 2 is amazing and I think everyone and their mother should play it.

      2 votes
  3. [4]
    SHFFLE
    Link
    The games Zachtronics makes are all fairly low spec (or at least seem to work fine for me on my costly potato laptop) - Exapunks just came out yesterday.

    The games Zachtronics makes are all fairly low spec (or at least seem to work fine for me on my costly potato laptop) - Exapunks just came out yesterday.

    10 votes
    1. [2]
      Hypersapien
      Link Parent
      Yes! A brand new Zachtronics game! Getting this one the first chance I get.

      Yes! A brand new Zachtronics game! Getting this one the first chance I get.

      4 votes
      1. SHFFLE
        Link Parent
        So far I really like it (I sold a bunch of random CS:GO skins I wasn’t even using to get it lmao. Somehow 19 year old me with too much disposable income managed to help currently-broke me out a...

        So far I really like it (I sold a bunch of random CS:GO skins I wasn’t even using to get it lmao. Somehow 19 year old me with too much disposable income managed to help currently-broke me out a bit). It’s like, somewhere in-between Shenzhen I/O and Opus Magnum, I’d say. There aren’t as many constraints as the former, but it’s also not as wide open and freeform as the latter. The language used for the coding is also significantly less cumbersome to use, and the puzzles are presented in a bit more visual manner, which I quite like. Also digging the music and story, and the fact that it’s straight-up wardialing.

        If you hadn’t seen it yet, check out the special edition they have on the site. It amusingly doesn’t include the game, but it contains the two zines from the game (this game’s manual equivalent) professionally printed, and another couple of feelies, essentially.

        2 votes
    2. what
      Link Parent
      Wow, the trailer for it looks amazing. I loved TIS-100, and I still need to play Shenzen IO (I want to make the fancy binder for the instructions).

      Wow, the trailer for it looks amazing. I loved TIS-100, and I still need to play Shenzen IO (I want to make the fancy binder for the instructions).

      1 vote
  4. [3]
    America
    Link
    Cave Story is probably my favorite game and it'll run on just about anything. Platypus is also fun. Both have good music.

    Cave Story is probably my favorite game and it'll run on just about anything.
    Platypus is also fun. Both have good music.

    7 votes
    1. [2]
      teaearlgraycold
      Link Parent
      You can even get it for the PSP

      You can even get it for the PSP

      1 vote
      1. defterade
        Link Parent
        Heh, this takes me back to the days I spent refreshing wololo.net in hopes Total_Noob would've finally released his PSP Go CFW.

        Heh, this takes me back to the days I spent refreshing wololo.net in hopes Total_Noob would've finally released his PSP Go CFW.

        1 vote
  5. [4]
    time
    Link
    I've always loved Myst, and it's sequels Riven, Exile, Revelations, Uru, End of Ages, and Myst Online. They recently celebrated the 25th anniversary, and all the games are now available recently...

    I've always loved Myst, and it's sequels Riven, Exile, Revelations, Uru, End of Ages, and Myst Online. They recently celebrated the 25th anniversary, and all the games are now available recently updated on gog.com.

    It was a neat world to get into, and when it first came out the 'realism' of the game compared to pretty much everything else out there was impressive. There's a lot of cool world building presented in an organic way, and even if some of the puzzles are dumb (looking at you, Uru firefly puzzle...), it's still a good experience and story to enjoy.

    6 votes
    1. [3]
      a_wild_swarm_appears
      Link Parent
      Have you tried The Talos Principle? If you like puzzles check that out. It has a similar (although more modern) feel to Myst, as far as I remember, haven't played Myst since it was released on...

      Have you tried The Talos Principle?
      If you like puzzles check that out. It has a similar (although more modern) feel to Myst, as far as I remember, haven't played Myst since it was released on Atari ST. Well worth a look!

      5 votes
      1. [2]
        time
        Link Parent
        That's actually one of my favorite games. I still need to go back and get all the stars one of these days.

        That's actually one of my favorite games. I still need to go back and get all the stars one of these days.

        2 votes
        1. a_wild_swarm_appears
          Link Parent
          I'm right in the middle of it at the moment. The atmosphere in it is so, so good!

          I'm right in the middle of it at the moment. The atmosphere in it is so, so good!

          1 vote
  6. dubteedub
    Link
    Link's Awakening on the GameBoy was my favorite game growing up. It can be played on almost anything through an emulator.

    Link's Awakening on the GameBoy was my favorite game growing up. It can be played on almost anything through an emulator.

    5 votes
  7. Gabe_DeGrossi
    Link
    I'd definitely recommend To The Moon and it's sequel, Finding Paradise. They are about 4 hours each and are heavily story focused. The ideal way to play them is in one session. Both can be run on...

    I'd definitely recommend To The Moon and it's sequel, Finding Paradise. They are about 4 hours each and are heavily story focused. The ideal way to play them is in one session. Both can be run on absolute toasters - but they still look good!

    To The Moon is probably my favourite game ever. Kan Gao is a master at story-telling and the script is excellent too.

    Here's a list:

    • Limbo. 2D platformer. Story based.
    • Mini Metro. Minimalist puzzle game about construction train stations.
    • Papers Please. Allow or prevent people from entering/leaving the great land of Arstoska.
    • Poly Bridge. Puzzle game. The objective is to build a bridge that can support a vehicle to drive over it.
    • Risk of Rain. Action platformer w/ roguelike elements.
    • Sorcery!. A classic text-based adventure.
    • Stardew Valley. RPG farming game. Super relaxing to play.
    • Star Wars: Battlefront 2 (2005). FPS based in the Star Wars universe. This game is my childhood.
    • Super Meat Boy. Challenging platformer.
    • Celeste. Challenging platformer. Like Super Meat Boy, but better IMO. Tight controls, great soundtrack, and a solid story.

    Hopefully, some of those pique your interest! Also, could you post your specs? There were quite a few games that I didn't include (Transistor, Terraria etc) because I wasn't that sure if you'd be able to run them.

    To find your specs:
    Windows key -> Settings -> System -> About. Just post the "Processor" and "Installed RAM".

    5 votes
  8. what
    (edited )
    Link
    I picked up Retro City Rampage and absolutely loved it, it's a 2D, old-school GTA-style game, with tons of video game and movie references. I played it on 3DS, but I think the list of supported...

    I picked up Retro City Rampage and absolutely loved it, it's a 2D, old-school GTA-style game, with tons of video game and movie references. I played it on 3DS, but I think the list of supported platforms (taken from Wikipedia) speaks for itself:

    Platform(s): Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Xbox 360, Sony PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo Switch, Wii, PlayStation 4, OS X, DOS, Linux, PlayStation Portable, Android, iOS

    The creator is a bit notorious for being able to port to anything :)

    Aside from that, it's an incredibly fun game, with a fun story and nice pixel art graphics.

    4 votes
  9. [2]
    Krael
    Link
    Doom/Doom 2. Modern source ports do a lot to "modernize" it without compromising the retro feel, and the game still gets metric craploads of new mods every month.

    Doom/Doom 2. Modern source ports do a lot to "modernize" it without compromising the retro feel, and the game still gets metric craploads of new mods every month.

    4 votes
    1. dubteedub
      Link Parent
      The latest Doom entry from 2016 also includes a whole series of those classic campaign maps from the original games to download and play through, which I thought was really neat.

      The latest Doom entry from 2016 also includes a whole series of those classic campaign maps from the original games to download and play through, which I thought was really neat.

      1 vote
  10. FunkyGenome
    (edited )
    Link
    It's very hard not to mention the Monkey Island series, so I'll just give in and do it. Monkey Island. Jones in the Fast Lane. Caveman. Commander Keane. Edited: Oh, and Castle Wolvenstein!

    It's very hard not to mention the Monkey Island series, so I'll just give in and do it.

    Monkey Island.
    Jones in the Fast Lane.
    Caveman.
    Commander Keane.

    Edited: Oh, and Castle Wolvenstein!

    4 votes
  11. MangoTiger
    Link
    Some of my favorite older games (I can't attest to how well they work on a tablet though): Roller Coaster Tycoon 1 & 2 Simcity 2000 & 3000 Theme Hospital Alpha Centauri Age of Empires II Rise of...

    Some of my favorite older games (I can't attest to how well they work on a tablet though):

    • Roller Coaster Tycoon 1 & 2
    • Simcity 2000 & 3000
    • Theme Hospital
    • Alpha Centauri
    • Age of Empires II
    • Rise of Nations
    • Fallout 1 & 2
    • Dungeon Keeper
    • Pharoah
    • Children of the Nile
    • Transport Tycoon (OpenTTD)
    • Civilization 3 & 4
    • Total Annihilation
    • basically anything else on gog.com
    4 votes
  12. [3]
    Fin
    Link
    I like to go back to GTA san andreas and GTA4, even though 4 still runs like crap last time I played it

    I like to go back to GTA san andreas and GTA4, even though 4 still runs like crap last time I played it

    3 votes
    1. EscReality
      Link Parent
      Crap am I old? I would never have considered either of those old games, I was gonna say Vice City...

      Crap am I old? I would never have considered either of those old games, I was gonna say Vice City...

      1 vote
    2. frickindeal
      Link Parent
      GTA IV isn't that bad on PC. I run it on an ancient desktop. I think I bought it in 2010, but I don't have much need for a new desktop. I can run it on fairly high settings and it looks and runs...

      GTA IV isn't that bad on PC. I run it on an ancient desktop. I think I bought it in 2010, but I don't have much need for a new desktop. I can run it on fairly high settings and it looks and runs great.

  13. [2]
    zptc
    Link
    Alpha Centauri is one of the best turn-based strategy games ever imo. There's also fan-made patches that give additional fixes, but I haven't looked into those much as yet.

    Alpha Centauri is one of the best turn-based strategy games ever imo. There's also fan-made patches that give additional fixes, but I haven't looked into those much as yet.

    3 votes
    1. a_wild_swarm_appears
      Link Parent
      Oh this is a good one! Definitely have to grab a copy.

      Oh this is a good one! Definitely have to grab a copy.

  14. spctrvl
    Link
    Master of Orion 1 and 2 are phenomenal 4X games that I've put countless hours into. There's also the original XCOMs, and Shadowrun Returns/Dragonfall/Hong Kong if you're into those sorts of games.

    Master of Orion 1 and 2 are phenomenal 4X games that I've put countless hours into. There's also the original XCOMs, and Shadowrun Returns/Dragonfall/Hong Kong if you're into those sorts of games.

    2 votes
  15. EscReality
    (edited )
    Link
    Doom95, I have beat it many times and it has never gotten old for me. Its been installed on every computer I have built since I started out in the PC world 20 years ago. GTA:Vice City has a...
    • Doom95, I have beat it many times and it has never gotten old for me. Its been installed on every computer I have built since I started out in the PC world 20 years ago.

    • GTA:Vice City has a special place in my childhood (along with Liberty City) and I really wish R* would let us revisit Vice City in a new game.

    • Tony Hawk's Underground, Underground 2 and American Wasteland are also massive parts of my youth and I turn my old xbox on occasion to play them. Not to mention its really nice to see the OG Xbox UI every once in awhile, I love it so much.

    EDIT:

    • Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance was also a favorite of mine, I really wish we could get a modern game in that franchise. Man, Star Wars games used to be so awesome.
    2 votes
  16. Chrozera
    Link
    I love factorio. It's mostly a sandbox game where you automate resource gathering and item crafting. With the goal of creating a rocket and sending it up into the sky. Minimum required specs: OS:...

    I love factorio.

    It's mostly a sandbox game where you automate resource gathering and item crafting. With the goal of creating a rocket and sending it up into the sky.

    Minimum required specs:
    OS: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista (64 Bit)
    Processor: Dual core 3Ghz+
    Memory: 4 GB RAM.
    Graphics: 512MB Video Memory.
    Storage: 1 GB available space.
    Additional Notes: Low sprite resolution and Low VRAM usage.

    2 votes
  17. hungariantoast
    Link
    Total Annihilation is still one of the best RTS games in my opinion. Made in 1997, but the engine can support thousands of units/buildings, scales great at 1080p. AI puts up a decent fight at...

    Total Annihilation is still one of the best RTS games in my opinion. Made in 1997, but the engine can support thousands of units/buildings, scales great at 1080p. AI puts up a decent fight at higher difficulties, and the modding community is still alive and well for the game.

    Oh and multiplayer still works too.

    1 vote
  18. dnaq
    Link
    I still think that planescape torment is one of the best character driven computer RPGs ever made, the mechanics haven’t aged well, but the story and character development is really good. However,...

    I still think that planescape torment is one of the best character driven computer RPGs ever made, the mechanics haven’t aged well, but the story and character development is really good. However, be prepared for a lot of text if you play it.

    I backed the Kickstarter for Torment: Tides of Numenera, a new game made in the vein of the original, and it was decent, but not at all as good as the original.

    1 vote
  19. yellow
    Link
    Cube 2: Sauerbraten probably has higher requirements that most of the suggestions here, but that's only because is is a first person shooter. It runs pretty well even on poor computers and has a...

    Cube 2: Sauerbraten probably has higher requirements that most of the suggestions here, but that's only because is is a first person shooter. It runs pretty well even on poor computers and has a lot of settings that can be turned way down to help. It's only good for online play, but there is still a couple servers that almost always in use(and probably hundreds of empty ones). If you do play, you will probably end up on instagib server, so expect fast paced action. It also boasts a built in level maker and is completely free.

    1 vote
  20. Neverland
    Link
    I would never call them low-end, but certainly old school: Metal Slug Samurai Showdown Joust

    I would never call them low-end, but certainly old school:

    Metal Slug

    Samurai Showdown

    Joust

    1 vote
  21. autopsy_turvy
    Link
    I'm surprised no one has mentioned Chrono Trigger, the pinnacle of JRPGs. The Steam re-release is playable with all the fixes/updates now. #1 for me.

    I'm surprised no one has mentioned Chrono Trigger, the pinnacle of JRPGs. The Steam re-release is playable with all the fixes/updates now. #1 for me.

    1 vote
  22. userexec
    Link
    Try Strife. It's an Original Doom engine first-person shooter with RPG elements and is, in my opinion, the best Doom engine spin-off game out there. If you can find the original version it will...

    Try Strife. It's an Original Doom engine first-person shooter with RPG elements and is, in my opinion, the best Doom engine spin-off game out there. If you can find the original version it will run on little more than an overclocked Yak Bak, and it's still worth a play through.

    1 vote
  23. Kiloku
    Link
    Star Wars Rebellion. I only get it to run glitch free if I run it inside a Windows XP virtual machine, but it's worth the effort. Also Freespace 2, which is very easy to run because it's from...

    Star Wars Rebellion. I only get it to run glitch free if I run it inside a Windows XP virtual machine, but it's worth the effort.

    Also Freespace 2, which is very easy to run because it's from 2001, but since it's open source, fan updates added lots of advanced graphical features (and non graphics features as well) which you can cherry pick as far as your PC can handle it

    1 vote
  24. cmccabe
    Link
    What? No one has mentioned Hunt the Wumpus?

    What? No one has mentioned Hunt the Wumpus?

  25. agentsmith907
    Link
    Halo Rouge Squadron Serious Sam 1-2

    Halo

    Rouge Squadron

    Serious Sam 1-2

  26. [2]
    vakieh
    Link
    Hands down, no contest, the Baldur's Gate trilogy (not the newest one). Best RPG Bioware ever produced, perhaps the greatest RPG of all time.

    Hands down, no contest, the Baldur's Gate trilogy (not the newest one).

    Best RPG Bioware ever produced, perhaps the greatest RPG of all time.

    1. Amarok
      Link Parent
      Planescape: Torment is pretty rad as well.

      Planescape: Torment is pretty rad as well.

  27. ImmobileVoyager
    Link
    I am addicted to Freeciv Is it old ? While a new version was released last month, its heritage certainly goes a long way. The look and graphics certainly seem to be stuck in the 1990s. This is...

    I am addicted to Freeciv

    Is it old ? While a new version was released last month, its heritage certainly goes a long way. The look and graphics certainly seem to be stuck in the 1990s. This is part of its retro charm, but there is more. You wouldn't want fancy widget come in the way of a mastermind strategy, would you ?

    Is it low-end ? Beeing a libre software, it certainly comes at the lowest end of the price range. Some of the ergonomics are discutable indeed. On the other hand, it being lightweight, and the ability to drive most of the action from a few rather intuitive keystrokes makes the gameplay truly engaging.

    For some time, I also played the commercial equivalent, Civilization V. Yes, the graphics are good looking, but the gameplay feels clumsy in comparison, and it suffers, of course, of all the quircks of commercial gaming : the constant nagging to buy yet some more option or yet another game entirely. I finally ditched it completely without any regret.

    Bottom line : excellent strategy game.

  28. KapteinB
    Link
    FTL: Faster Than Light Retro rogue-like tactical space combat/exploration game, playable on almost any hardware.

    FTL: Faster Than Light

    Retro rogue-like tactical space combat/exploration game, playable on almost any hardware.

  29. PeanutbutterBlob
    Link
    I have a soft spot for STALKER Shadow of Chernobyl (and the later games) and Mount and Blade: Warband. The best thing for both games are that the modding communities are both very active to this...

    I have a soft spot for STALKER Shadow of Chernobyl (and the later games) and Mount and Blade: Warband. The best thing for both games are that the modding communities are both very active to this day. The mods continues to breathe new life to the games. And both games have squeals apparently being worked on! (M&B more so than STALKER 2, but I can hope)

  30. StellarV
    Link
    Most of what I can think of have already been mentioned but I also really like the game Star Trek: Elite Force. I thought it was pretty great for the time and still play it every few years. There...

    Most of what I can think of have already been mentioned but I also really like the game Star Trek: Elite Force. I thought it was pretty great for the time and still play it every few years.

    There was a good article I stumbled across recently. One of the creators of the game even posted a great response in the comments!