Monday, February 9, 2009

GP2X Wiz Homebrew (Quake 2, X-COM, MAME)

My sources tell me that the GP2X Wiz is due to be released around March 5th, but prototypes of the Wiz are already in the hands of some great homebrew game developers.

These guys have been hard at work getting games ready for the launch early next month. I'm not talking about some silly little games like pong or tic-tac-toe that any mediocre programmer can whip together. I'm talking about games that you've actually heard of and played before. Check the full post to get an idea of what I mean.

Open systems like the GP32, GP2X, and now the GP2X Wiz are popular platforms for running older games. Sometimes great games that you know and loved from years past have their source code released by the original developer. That allows homebrew developers to port the game to these platforms. When source code is not available, you often see homebrew developers making their own version of an old game or creating an emulator to play the original game on this new platform.

Recently, I've seen and read about some interesting games running on the Wiz. Have you ever played UFO: Enemy Unknown (aka X-COM: UFO Defense)? Well, thanks to a guy called "Pickle" you can play it and it's sequel X-COM: Terror from the Deep on the GP2X Wiz.

In fact, this Pickle guy has been pretty busy lately. He's got games like Doom, Wolfenstein 3D, and Quake II running on the Wiz. Here's a video of Quake 2 running.

I mentioned emulation as a way to run popular games. A lot of people get these handheld consoles just for the emulation of older systems. I believe that emulators running on the GP2X Wiz will range from emulating systems like the Commodore 64 to the Playstation PSX. One of the most well known and popular video game emulators is MAME. If you didn't already know, MAME stands for Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator, and its job is to run all your favorite arcade games. A developer called "Franxis" has been working on bringing MAME to the Wiz. Here's a video he made of his latest version.

Of course, whenever we're talking about playing your old games on any system, it's worth noting that you need to own the original game to legally play the game. In fact, you will need files from your original version to play the games mentioned.

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