With the almost infinite ways in which PC’s can be customised, it’s very difficult buying computer games. I find games that should struggle with my machine run adiquately and games that should run that don’t. In the past, I have used demos or trial versions to try and see if they run on my PC. Usually these have not only seen whether I can run the game or not, but also because they used to offer a large sample of the game, but now it’s not the case.
When I started playing PC games, the demos were huge. Games like Quake, Commander Keen and Duke Nukem had massive demos – with between a thrid and a quarter of the game given away for free. Admittedly, whilst they were in the shops, they were shareware (sure the long time gamers amongst us remember the rudimentary DOS screens displayed as you returned to the command prompt following the games – one of my favourites was the quote when you exited the registered version of Quake “Congratulations! You are probably not a theif”). However, many of the games of that era had humongous demos, such as Carmageddon (which also had a crack available for it, so that you could play as any car in the demo), Grand Theft Auto, Championship Manager and POD.
Nowadays, it is not the case. First of all, there are tons of games without demos. I dunno, maybe I’m not looking in the right place, but it seems to be the case. Almost every game had a demo of some description in the mid 90′s. 10 years later there are very few. I used to get pissed off that I only got 3 holes on PGA Tour Golf, now I’m lucky to get two.
I’m probably looking in the wrong place online however, and all this winging is for nowt. I suppose if anybody has any websites with PC game demos on? Especially Civilization IV and Pirates! (as in the Sid Meier game), as I’d like those please.