Abandonware DOS title
download 2237 DOS and Windows abandonware games

Classic Windows 3.1 games

Windows 3.1 was the first Windows software (by Microsoft, of course) that became popular worldwide. Contrary to popular belief, Windows 3.1 wasn't a full operating system. It was a collection of applications running in an operating environment, and yes, there's a big difference. Why? Because to run Windows 3.1 you still needed an MS-DOS based computer.

The need of MS-DOS was perhaps the main reason why games that ran under Windows 3.1 weren't so many. In fact, most of them are little more than puzzle games, card games and simple strategy games. That doesn't mean Windows 3.1 lacked good games; in fact, a few of them are still very much enjoyable today.

As you can imagine, backward compatibility is a problem. To run these games you need a virtual machine or, if you like the challenge, you could install Windows 3.1 on DOSBox. On archive.org you can even play a few Win 3.1 games online directly in your browser.

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  • balance-of-power-1990-04
    simulation1989
  • castleofthewinds-3
    rpg1993

    Castle of the Winds (1993, by Saadasoft) is a perfect example of an atypical roguelike (no ASCII, runs in Windows) turned into a liberated game. Surprisingly Castle of the Winds is still very playable to this day, if you can make it run under a recent version of Windows.

  • chips-challenge-win3-01
    puzzle1991
  • empire-deluxe-07
    strategy1993
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  • glider-02
    action1994
  • holiday-island-4
    simulation1996
  • indy-desktop-adventures-2
    action-adventure1996
  • microman-adventures-win3x-04
    action1993
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  • minesweeper-04
    puzzle1992
  • mordor-dephts-dejanol-07
    rpg1995

    Mordor: The Depths of Dejenol is fantasy RPG game released in 1995 for Windows 3.x, but it runs flawlessy even Windows XP (see this faq if you want to play Mordor in a virtual machine). Mordor: The Depths of Dejenol is a mix of first-person and top-down perspective dungeon crawler; the game shows the dungeon in by both perspectives at once, taking advantage of Windows features.

  • simcity2000-1
    simulation1993

    SimCity 2000 is a classic city building simulation, part of the popular SimCity series, developed by Maxis and designed by Will Wright. SimCity 2000 is a huge step up from the 2D predecessor SimCity and boasts improvements like: isometric view, underground, water pipes, subways, new buildings like prisons, schools, libraries, museums, etc.

  • simearth-win3x-02
    simulation1990

    SimEarth is a simulation in which you can shape and mold a planet in almost every way you can imagine. In SimEarth our planet is simulated as a whole: life, climate, atmosphere are all aspects of a single Gaia-like Earth. SimEarth can be played in two modes: game and experimental. In game mode, you have to to develop (and preserve) Earth with limited energy levels. In experimental mode, you are given unlimited energy to do what you want in a classic sandbox style.

  • sim-tower-5
    simulation1994

    SimTower is an old Windows 3.x (1994) building and business simulation game where the player is tasked with the management of a skyscraper nonetheless. Raise floors, build apartments, shops, offices and try to avoid bankruptcy if you can. SimTower spawned some similar games for mobile devices, most notably the wonderful Tiny Tower, It's surprisingly good even after all these years.

  • skifree-04
    sports1991
  • spaceward-ho03
    strategy1992
  • tetris-classic-02
    puzzle1992
  • the-incredible-toon-machine-05
    puzzle1994
  • uninvited-win3x-04
    adventure1987
  • winrisk-01
    strategy1992
  • wintrek-04
    vehicle simulation1992
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