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[Netbook Gamer's Union] Join your local chapter today!

El GuacoEl Guaco Registered User regular
edited May 2010 in Games and Technology
Netbook Gamer's Union

What is this?
A place to discuss gaming on netbooks. With the rise of smaller machines due to things like the Intel Atom processor, having a small portable computer is becoming more common. Consequently, there is increased attention on and demand for games that will run on netbooks. The Netbook Gamer's Union is dedicated to the promotion of games that play well on netbooks.

What this is not.
This isn't the place to talk about which netbook to buy. We already have a great thread for that here.

The Games
We'll try to keep a list of here of some of the good games recommended for playing on a netbook. Obviously, it won't be comprehensive or canonical, but feel free to suggest games to be added. Additionally we'll try to keep some comments with each game on performance related issues or tips.

Update: There's a huge article here that does way more than I've attempted to do here in this thread. Look here first for tips on game choices.
Spoiler:

Tips
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Background
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El Guaco on



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Posts

  • bobmyknobbobmyknob Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I mentioned in the Netbook thread that Civ 4 does run on netbooks. Not amazingly or anything, but it does run acceptably.

    I would also add Quake Live to your list, although it obviously won't work on the airplane.

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  • kaleeditykaleedity Sometimes science is more art than science Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    diablo 2, starcraft, and crimsonland are my current netbook games of choice that you haven't mentioned.

    crimsonland is a fun little overhead shooter that works out pretty well on a netbook.

  • LoveIsUnityLoveIsUnity Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I'm currently rocking System Shock 2, Baldur's Gate, and a few Scumm games on my netbook.

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  • DírhaelDírhael .noRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    A few games I currently have installed on my netbook (N280 CPU, 2GB RAM, Intel GMA 950 Graphics):
    • Age Of Wonders II
      - Runs great, and supports my native resolution of 1024x600 (out of the box).
    • Fallout Tactics
      - Runs great, and with the hi-res patch from NMA the game runs in 1024x600 without problems (get patch here). Patches for Fallout 1+2 also available, and should run just as well.
    • Wizardry 8
      - Runs great, and supports 1024x600 out of the box.
    • Gyromancer
      - Runs really well, but is stretched as the game does not support widescreen fullscreen (the game only supports 800x600 FS). You can run windowed to avoid this, but at 1024x600 parts of the image will be clipped.
    • Audiosurf
      - Runs really well at minimal settings (some lag in menus, but not in-game). Supports 1024x600 out of the box.
    • Trials 2: Second Edition
      - Runs ok on the lowest detail level. Some slight lag, but very playable. Supports 1024x600 out of the box.

    steam.png Steam ::: Dirhael
    xbox.png XBL ::: Tehrig

    ::::: the PA wallpaper dump :::::
  • KhavallKhavall Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
  • kaleeditykaleedity Sometimes science is more art than science Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I think I have discovered the limits of my http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834146606 - an atom N270 1.60ghz, 2g ddr2, nvidia ion machine.

    It can barely just not run unreal tournament 2004. I can actually get it to run fairly well in opengl, provided it doesn't have to draw any characters beyond mine. It managed to hit 60 fps in some short hallways. It just drops pretty drastically to unplayable levels when a couple of zombies show up at once in killing floor. Higher end atom processors or any of the newer nvidia ion things that aren't out yet would probably make it more manageable.

    also, add braid and nethack to my list.

  • milehighmilehigh Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Anyone tried running Baldur's Gate 2 on a Netbook? I don't own one, but I'm leaning towards getting one for this semester, and if I could run this epic while en route to school it would surely influence my decision...

  • El GuacoEl Guaco Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I'll have to update the OP later when I have time (work is kicking my ass). I think I read somewhere else that BG2 works fine, I dunno.




  • DranythDranyth Surf ColoradoRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Dírhael wrote: »
    A few games I currently have installed on my netbook (N280 CPU, 2GB RAM, Intel GMA 950 Graphics):
    • Age Of Wonders II
      - Runs great, and supports my native resolution of 1024x600 (out of the box).
    • Wizardry 8
      - Runs great, and supports 1024x600 out of the box.

    Really? That is tempting, particularly AoW2:Shadow Magic that I never *really* got around to playing much. Wizardry 8 is awesome of course, though I'm not sure I could ever play it again after beating it, it's just so fucking long. And hard.


    I've got Thief 1 running on my netbook of the same stats, and for the hell of it I tried Half-Life 1 which worked quite well.

    I haven't yet tried Thief 2 as my PC's install of it is a bit screwed anyway, but if Thief 2 worked I'd have to imagine that System Shock 2 would be fine as well.

  • GlalGlal Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Dírhael wrote: »
    [*]Wizardry 8
    - Runs great, and supports 1024x600 out of the box.
    Partially true. It does support 1024x600 out of the box, but it doesn't take the aspect change into account and ends up stretching the proportions. See here for example.
    It's a shame, too. I just play it at 800x600 with black columns on the sides instead.

  • DelzhandDelzhand motivated battle programmerRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Torchlight is supposed to run well on netbooks. It even has a Netbook Mode in the graphics settings.

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  • xa52xa52 Registered User
    edited December 2009
    Torchlight - Runs OK to great depending on your netbook AND if you check "netbook mode" in the settings.

    This is not my experience. The Torchlight demo ran fine on my Eee 1000. After wasting $20 on the full version, anything beyond the mine levels included in the demo ran at <10 fps, which just doesn't work for this type of game.
    (edit- http://forums.runicgames.com/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=1387)

    Add HoMM 5 to the list, runs great.

    Anyone else try KotOR? It's running fine for me, but I haven't gotten too far into it yet.

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  • HenroidHenroid Gibberish Cold white sand!Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    This is a great idea for a thread, even though I don't have a netbook. But I do have a contribution.

    How do the Tycoon or Sim games hold up on netbooks?

    "Ultima Online Pre-Trammel is the perfect example of why libertarians are full of shit." - @Ludious
    PA Lets Play Archive - Twitter - Blog
  • El GuacoEl Guaco Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    OK, I updated the OP with the games you guys said ran well. If you recommend a game for the list, be sure to include any tips or gotchas for running on a netbook.

    Based on what you guys mentioned, I went on a Steam shopping spree last night and bought 4 games for less than $50!

    - Bookworm Adventures Deluxe
    - Peggle Deluxe & Peggle Nights
    - Fallout Tactics
    - Secret of Monkey Island: SE

    That last one may or may not work, but I'm going to play it regardless (on my desktop if need be), so I'll update when I know more. Between those 4, I should be thoroughly entertained on the long plane ride across the US.




  • CyberJackalCyberJackal Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Well, I can confirm that both Star Wars: Empire at War and Freedom Force run fine on my netbook. I should note I was playing SW:EaW on a USB CD drive.

    What can I say, I had a craving for some Star Wars battles for some reason...

  • Lars_DomusLars_Domus Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Sign me up!

    My game of choice on my netbook is Spelunky. It's lightweight, infinitely replayable, and a single run usually ends quick enough that I can pull it up play it anywhere and anytime I need to kill some time.

    Retro style indie games in general tend to go with netbooks as jelly goes with peanut butter.

    Also, there's a whole bunch of games just begging to be played on netbooks over at GoG.com. Personally, I can vouch for HoMM III and Disciples II - TBS's in general seem to be well suited - and I see the Fallout's have been mentioned already.

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  • Professor PhobosProfessor Phobos Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Anyone tried Europa Universalis III or Hearts of Iron III on netbooks?

  • FremFrem Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Henroid wrote: »
    This is a great idea for a thread, even though I don't have a netbook. But I do have a contribution.

    How do the Tycoon or Sim games hold up on netbooks?

    SimCity Classic and SimTower were designed to be run at 640x480 (as was SimCity 2000, I believe). SimCopter, SimSafari, and Streets of SimCity would also probably run fine.

  • DírhaelDírhael .noRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    A couple more:
    • Sid Meier's Pirates
      - Runs ok as long as you drop the detail levels down to low. Does not support 1024x600 (it doesn't support widescreen resolutions at all), so I'm running at 800x600.
    • Saira
      - Well, it runs and is playable, but a bit slow (slow-motion, not choppy). On the positive side, it's a beautiful game from the developer of Knytt (!), and is developed for 1024x600. Probably best suited for ION powered netbooks, even if it's a 2D game.

    steam.png Steam ::: Dirhael
    xbox.png XBL ::: Tehrig

    ::::: the PA wallpaper dump :::::
  • xa52xa52 Registered User
    edited December 2009
    El Guaco wrote: »
    - Secret of Monkey Island: SE

    That last one may or may not work, but I'm going to play it regardless (on my desktop if need be), so I'll update when I know more. Between those 4, I should be thoroughly entertained on the long plane ride across the US.

    SoMI mostly works fine. Animation in a few rooms stutters, including the dock area where the game starts. You can hit F10 to switch to old school mode to get through those.

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  • DarmakDarmak Godking of the Snerkywizards Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    As someone mentioned, check gog.com, they have awesome stuff like the Might and Magic games, Heroes of Might and Magic, Myst and Riven, etc.

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  • VeeveeVeevee WisconsinRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I can say for a fact that Simcity3000 works perfectly, at least on my Samsung NC10

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  • ShadowfireShadowfire Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Darmak wrote: »
    As someone mentioned, check gog.com, they have awesome stuff like the Might and Magic games, Heroes of Might and Magic, Myst and Riven, etc.

    Heroes of Might and Magic III should come pre-installed on every computer, netbook or no.

    steam_sig.png
    WiiU: Windrunner ; Guild Wars 2: Shadowfire.3940 ; PSN: Bradcopter
  • Ash-HousewaresAsh-Housewares TARDIS Hunter Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I've been playing Quake 1 and Quake 2 on my netbook since I got it.

    Steam ID: Ash-Housewares
  • BullioBullio Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Man, perfect timing for this thread. I just started looking into this whole Netbook thing a couple days ago as substitute for my Inspiron 9300. The adapter slot on the comp isn't really working (constantly have to adjust the AC adapter) and the sound is gone (sorta my fault). I was wondering how these things handle older games, and seeing BG on the list makes my heart warm. My first thought was "I wonder how BG and Torment run on these things." I'll be watching this thread, so thanks!

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  • Professor PhobosProfessor Phobos Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    What about something like Medieval: Total War? (The first one)

  • TediakTediak Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I've probably sunk 40 hours into Spelunky on my Netbook. It's basically a "platformer roguelike".

  • citizen059citizen059 on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeamRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Battle for Wesnoth should work. 2D turn-based strategy, no system requirements listed but it doesn't take much.

    Support for Windows, Linux, etc.

    Works on netbooks for these people, this thread detailing how some of them got around some resolution issues.

    Oh, and it's also free. Can't go wrong there.

  • DírhaelDírhael .noRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I'm preparing my netbook for a 2 week vacation, so I've been testing several games. As a result, I've got two more for the list:
    • System Shock 2
      - Runs really well, even with the SS2 Rebirth and SHTUP mods installed, and with SS2Tool to enable support for custom resolutions (I'm playing the game at 1024x600). If, like me, you are running Windows 7 on your netbook, don't forget to run the game as admin. This is required if you want to see the videos in the game.
    • Jagged Alliance 2
      - Runs great. Does not support widescreen resolutions though, so you'll either have to play with bars on the sides or have the game stretch to fill the screen. Don't forget to grab the latest unofficial patch to get the most out the game.

    steam.png Steam ::: Dirhael
    xbox.png XBL ::: Tehrig

    ::::: the PA wallpaper dump :::::
  • seabassseabass Doctor MassachusettsRegistered User regular
    edited December 2009
    So, I have a Dell Mini 9 running a souped up / stripped down version of ubuntu, and I use it to kill an hour or 15 on planes and in airports when I travel.

    Basically, if it runs in Dos-box, you can get it running well on a netbook. My personal favorites are the old might and magic games and the old ultima series, but anything released before windows98 is going to be pretty easy to get running. You *MAY* need to make images of your game cd's and bring them over on a USB drive. Sometimes you can just do a full install from a network drive, and that will work just fine.

    Battle for Wesnoth runs ok, if you like turn based strategy.

    La-Mulana is getting better under wine every week. I think it works ok if you have access to transgaming stuff.

    If you have a netbook which is also a tablet, this is a really good read. I wish I had held out for a touch book or something at this point because of that idea.

    My main gripes with games like dwarf fortress (and to a lesser extent nethack) is my lack of a full keyboard. Are there standard compact keyboard bindings for these games?

    Run you pigeons, it's Robert Frost!
  • TrikoTriko Registered User
    edited December 2009
    World of Goo runs perfectly on my Netbook, and I've been looking at other 2D and old school games, but haven't gotten around to trying much (bought my Netbook mainly for work). Definitely want to give the older Fallout games a try after playing Fallout 3.

    At the moment, Solitaire is still king for my Netbook gaming...need something to pick up and play for 15 minutes, and then get back to work.

  • greebzillagreebzilla Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    x-com (via steam) is working fine on my netbook.
    (I have an Asus 1005HA with win7 starter)

    I've also installed a few games from gog.com (HoMM3 complete, Conquest of the New World). its tempting to see if Freespace 2 would work ;)

  • MechanicalMechanical Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Red Alert 2. There's no excuse unless you don't like RTSes. Also malleable as hell, lots of mods for it (some better than others) and runs on nearly anything.

    3DS: 2809-9292-5994
  • MechMantisMechMantis Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    greebzilla wrote: »
    x-com (via steam) is working fine on my netbook.
    (I have an Asus 1005HA with win7 starter)

    I've also installed a few games from gog.com (HoMM3 complete, Conquest of the New World). its tempting to see if Freespace 2 would work ;)


    It absolutely would.


    But running the mediavp-enhanced SCP would make it die horribly.

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  • 0blique0blique Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    Good idea for a thread, as often I have to go searching far and wide to determine compatibility.

    I can verify audiosurf and diablo 2, both work with no issues whatsoever (slower framerate, but no problem). The monkey island remake works perfectly fine, unlike what a lot of other people seemed to think at the time.

    I'm using a stock wind u100 from December last year.

  • Mustachio JonesMustachio Jones Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    World of Goo.

  • ZellZell Registered User
    edited December 2009
    On my ION 330 running Windows 7 here's what I have installed:

    Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal
    Cave Story (freeware)
    Death Rally (freeware Windows port)
    La-Mulana (freeware)
    Master of Orion II: Battle at Antares
    Tyrian (freeware with open source port to Linux and Windows)
    Vangers
    Ys: The Oath in Felghana (you should probably play Ys I & II Complete first)

    All should run well on netbooks too, any old Windows game should really, netbooks have no compatibility issues other than their poor controls.

  • TheUnsane1TheUnsane1 Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    I really wanna make a netbook into a portable arcade with mugen/mame. Am I forgetting any gamepad playable single box multiplayer games besides that stuff?(I know Heroes of Might and Magic is an auto install) . I plan to make it a break/lunchtime arcade set up so shorter games are likely better options.

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  • DusT_HounDDusT_HounD Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    From GOG.com, Hostile Waters runs really nicely, and it has Tom Baker!

  • AisengardAisengard Registered User regular
    edited December 2009
    If you have HOMM 5 on there, please add HOMM 3 as well. I've logged many hours replaying those campaigns on my 12-inch inspiron - back when small laptops were a fad for weird people who liked their portable things to actually be portable (2005).

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