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#Halo

3/17/2011 3:29:48 AM
7

Pathways into Emulators - A Guide to Pre-Halo Bungie Games

[i]This guide works for Windows, Mac OS, and Linux-based operating systems. For those of you that prefer to figure things out for yourself, get the Basilisk II emulator [/i][url=http://www.emaculation.com/doku.php/basilisk_ii][i]here[/i][/url][i], System 7 from [/i][url=http://download.info.apple.com/Apple_Support_Area/Apple_Software_Updates/English-North_American/Macintosh/System/Older_System/System_7.5_Version_7.5.3/][i]this page[/i][/url][i], and download the games from [/i][url=http://www.macintoshgarden.org/][i]this site[/i][/url][i]. You are left to your own devices for the ROM image. If you know why you are here and what an emulator is, you may skip this first post entirely. It simply goes over some history and introduces basic technical concepts. Questions may be asked below. Try to be as descriptive and coherent as possible.[/i] [b][u]A Bit of History[/u][/b] It is fairly common knowledge that Bungie has been around well before the Halo series, but when and what games they released is not. For the curious, Thanatos 117 has penned a truly fascinating summary of Bungie history found [url=http://www.bungie.net/Forums/posts.aspx?postID=31450175]here[/url] - even more detail may be found in [url=http://www.bungie.net/Inside/history.aspx]the history section[/url] of Bungie.net. This guide forgoes any plot summaries or trivia in favor of the utilitarian approach - how can we get games this old to run on a modern system? The purview of this document is freeware games developed or published by Bungie prior to the release of Halo in 2001, which comprises [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gnop!]Gnop! (1990)[/url], [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation:_Desert_Storm_(video_game)]Operation: Desert Storm (1991)[/url], [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minotaur:_The_Labyrinths_of_Crete]Minotaur: The Labyrinths of Crete (1992)[/url], [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pathways_into_darkness]Pathways into Darkness (1993)[/url], [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marathon_(video_game)]Marathon (1994)[/url], [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marathon_2:_Durandal]Marathon2: Durandal (1995)[/url],[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marathon_Infinity]Marathon Infinity (1996)[/url], and [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abuse_(video_game)]Abuse (1996)[/url]. As you can see, Bungie had quite the release schedule back in the day! Unfortunately, Oni and the Myth series are not freeware, and so will not be considered in this guide. One point I will raise about the Marathon trilogy - if you are not a pathological purist, I strongly recommend installing the modernized version found in [url=http://www.bungie.net/Forums/posts.aspx?postID=40058407]this[/url] guide. The current hub of the older Bungie games community is [url=http://www.bungie.net/fanclub/carnage/Group/GroupHome.aspx]For Carnage Apply Within[/url]. They often organize online games for games that would otherwise be dead, so they represent your last chance to capture the glory of what once was. [b][u]Basic Technical Stuff[/u][/b] The unifying characteristic of these games - the root from which all difficulty and frustration stems - is that they were written to run on obsolete Apple computers from the 90s. To those of you that are ignorant of the challenges of backward compatibility, suffice it to say that this is a very serious issue. Given the massive disparity between modern computers and these devices, you are left with just three options - actually use an old Apple computer, rewrite the software, or use emulation. Of the three, emulation is the clear winner. Emulation is the process of creating a virtual computer as a program on another computer, so the program behaves exactly like the physical computer it is meant to imitate. From the perspective of software running within this virtual machine, there is no difference. Emulation is done through the use of an [i]emulator[/i] - a program that takes a description of the computer you wish to create, constructs such a computer, and allows programs to run on it. The end result is [url=http://i.imgur.com/9YZ0C.jpg]this[/url] - a computer running within a computer. In this screenshot, we would refer to Windows 7 as the [i]host operating system[/i] and Mac OS 7 as the [i]guest operating system[/i]. The emulator we will use is called Basilisk II. There are several things we need in order to describe the computer we want to the emulator. The first is a virtual hard drive, known in this context as a [i]system volume[/i]. The virtual machine will use a system volume as a regular computer would its hard drive. In practice, the system volume is simply a file of specified size ([url=http://i.imgur.com/oOSpm.jpg]example[/url]). In order to create the system volume and transfer files to it, you will need to use a program that varies depending on your OS. This will be explained later. The second item we need is called a [i]ROM image[/i]. In this case, the ROM image is a file containing a very low-level program that would have translated software instructions into the actual manipulation of electrical charges on the hardware of an old computer. Here we begin to delve into legal difficulties - the Apple ROM images we want have not been freely released. Thus while offering them for download is completely legal, it is [i]illegal[/i] for you to download them unless you own that specific model of computer. The particular ROM image we want is from the Macintosh Quadra 650. In accordance with site policy, no discussion of where to find ROM images will be entertained here. The third and final item is the operating system we wish to install. Apple has been generous enough to freely release the System 7.x series of operating systems. The System 7.5.3 install we want is split into 19 parts (as it was meant to fit onto a series of floppy disks), and should be downloaded into a single directory from [url=http://download.info.apple.com/Apple_Support_Area/Apple_Software_Updates/English-North_American/Macintosh/System/Older_System/System_7.5_Version_7.5.3/]this[/url] page.

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