3D Realms Anthology Review: Premium Abandonware

Game: 3D Realms Anthology
Release Date: May 5, 2015
Publisher: 3D Realms
Platform: Windows PC; Mac OS X via Steam

3D Realms, or as some would know them, the former Apogee Software LTD, was one of a couple major studios releasing games on the legendary DOS platform back in the late 80s to mid 90s. Games such as Duke Nukem, Raptor: Call of the Shadows and Commander Keen were staples in PC gaming households, where EGA, VGA and SVGA graphics and Sound Blaster soundcards were the thing to have back then if you were a PC gaming enthusiast, which were a premium in the 90s.

Eventually as technology advanced, 3D Realms and Epic Megagames were left in the dust while companies like Sega and EA were delving into the PC market, with gaming on Windows 98 and XP started taking off, and DOS becoming obsolete.

Fast forward a few years, and here we have the 3D Realms Anthology on PC. $120 worth of games, such as Blake Stone: Aliens of Gold, Cosmo’s Cosmic Adventure, Raptor, Major Stryker, Duke Nukem, Halloween Harry and more. While the gamer in you should jump for joy, the consumer in you should stay away.


Duke Nukem II was probably one of the best PC games of the 90s

These games have been abandonware for a couple decades at this point, and DOSBox has been available for that same amount of time. Every game in the collection pretty much utilizes DOSBox, so don’t expect these games to have been updated for 2015, which sorely disappointed me once I clicked on Blake Stone: Aliens of Gold for the first time in nearly 20 years.

The fact that 3D Realms pretty much packaged up a set of 3o games that were available for free on archival sites, and could be played on web browsers at this point, for $40 is extremely infuriating, and pretty condescending to the consumer. There is no excuse for not at least putting some elbow grease into a set of “revolutionary games,” as they themselves have billed it.

Needless to say, actually controller support is lacking, as there is no manual telling you which button on your Xbox One/360 controller binds to the Gravis Gamepad controls in these old releases. Keyboard still operates as expected of these games, so the keyboard controls are the most preferred.

*This game collection was provided by 3D Realms for review purposes. Any opinions in the below review are solely of the reviewer.*

This collection should have stayed in the past

It’s never a good idea to convince your consumers that they’ve wasted their time and money, but this is how 3D Realms Anthology feels. The full games have been Abandonware for several years now, and most of the full games are accessible through DOSBox emulation. While the value of a pre-setup DOSBox exists, it’s still simple enough for a user to implement and get all of their favorite DOS games running.

  • 3/10
    Save your money and set up DOSBox yourself. - 3/10
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About The Author

Clinton Bowman-Christie
Managing Editor, Games & Technology

Teacher's Assistant by day, passionate gamer and wrestling fan by night. This describes Clinton to a T. A Brooklyn, New York resident for all of his life, gaming, Power Rangers, football, basketball and wrestling pretty much comprise a lot of his free time.