7 free retro PC games you have to play

Here at MyGaming, we’re all about retro games. Well, I am. And it’s not because I’m old. Okay, it’s because I’m old. Fine, I’m old and these are games I played when I was a kid that are free to download on your internets. We didn’t even have internets when I was your age. Excuse me, I have to go hose some brats off the lawn or something.

Beneath a Steel Sky

It’s a cyberpunk adventure set in Australia, which is pretty much the last place you’d expect to find any sort of cyberpunk adventure. I mean, Australia is usually all about sharks and spiders and Vegemite sandwiches on the barby, not a post-nuclear holocaust dystopia built on the set of Blade Runner.

Originally released to instant critical acclaim and cult status back in 1994, the game was relaunched as freeware ten years later just in time for everybody to remember what a brilliant game it was and play it all over again. You can grab the game plus manual plus bonus goodies plus seriously, what else could you possibly want except maybe a bag of shortcake Tumbles from GOG.com.

You’re in a desert walking along in the sand when all of the sudden you look down, and you see a a bag of Tumbles, Foster, it’s tumbling toward you. You reach down, you flip the bag of Tumbles over on its back, Foster. The bag of Tumbles lays on its back, its chocolatey shortcakey goodness baking in the hot sun, melting into a big mess, but it can’t stop, not without your help. But you’re not helping. Why is that?

Quest for Glory II: Trial by Fire

If I had to choose a most favourite ever Quest for Glory game, it would be Quest for Glory II. Definitely. Probably. I mean, the first Quest for Glory had a cool sort of Brothers Grimm fairy tale thing going on, and Quest for Glory III had the Awful Waffle Walker, and Quest for Glory IV had vampires, but there’s something quite special about Quest for Glory II. I think it’s because you get to ride around everywhere on a dinosaur.

The original Sierra game is, of course, still protected by copyright even though it’s almost impossible to actually buy on disc, but the AGD Interactive’s remake is completely free and features enhanced 256-colour graphics and a point ‘n’ click interface. Yes, please.

Not pictured: the dinosaur.

Space Quest II: Vohaul’s Revenge

What’s worse than a hundred million insurance salesmen? Nothing. That’s the basic premise of Sludge Vohaul’s big plan to eradicate all sentient life on Xenon, and it’s up to Xenon Orbital Station 4’s head (and only) janitor, Roger Wilco, to do something about it. Why just Roger? It’s doesn’t matter, but it does set up Space Quest III rather neatly.

Although the original version is available to buy on a Space Quest compilation released a while back, there’s also a free remake by Infamous Adventures. Much like AGDI’s Quest for Glory II remake, this one also features enhanced 256-colour graphics and a point ‘n’ click interface, and unlike AGDI’s Quest for Glory II remake, I actually helped the Infamous Adventures guys with testing this game during development a couple of years back. That’s why all the apostrophes are in the right places.

Why doesn’t the dust just float away into space?

King’s Quest III: To Heir is Human

Experts agree that King’s Quest III was better than all the other King’s Quests put together because:

  1. Gwydion is a way better protagonist than that repulsive goody-goody Graham and the totally useless Rosella.
  2. You get to steal Baby Bear’s porridge. It’s every sociopathic childhood dream come true.
  3. KICK CAT.

Same deal as before with the original version, but this time around, there are actually two different free remakes available from Infamous Adventures and AGDI. Both remakes feature 256-colour blah blah blah, you know how it goes now.

If Gwydion is a prisoner, are these really free range chickens?


This game is so retro, it doesn’t even have real graphics and the learning curve leans backwards. ARE YOU MAN/WOMEN ENOUGH?

Soon, you’ll see every full stop as a blade of grass, every forward slash as a door, every hash as a brick. That’s when reality will slip away, and they’ll put you in a soft room on your own.

Black Cauldron

To be completely honest, the only reason I really remember this game at all is because the lead character’s name is Taran, which is the boy’s version of my name. It also featured a pig that followed Taran around everywhere, and when I played this as a kid, it made me wish I also had a pig that followed me around everywhere. My parents bought me a Thundercat instead.

There are also two different remakes of this game out there, although both are basically just the original game with a point ‘n’ click interface replacing the function key control scheme. Here’s one and here’s the other one.


Dink Smallwood

The thing about most fantasy RPGs is that everybody’s totally perfectly heroic and brave and selfless and ready to pledge their very mortality to saving the world from dragons / undead / undead dragons / whatever.

What about those stroppy, resentful adolescents who’d rather be boffing the farmer’s daughter than saving the world from dragons / undead / undead dragons / whatever? That’s Dink Smallwood. Also, there’s a town inhabited entirely by ducks and you can punch them. It’s not every day you get to punch a duck.

The game is free to download and keep forever from developer RTSoft.

I hate you. I hate my chores. I hate everything about this whole town. Some day, I’m just gonna run away on a haywain to Kalaifornya.

Have you spotted any classics going for a song? Let us know in the comments below and on the MyGaming forum.

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7 free retro PC games you have to play

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