Yesterday I talked about how lots of old games are having their engines reimplemented making them playable on newer systems. Today I want to give an example of how this has been awesome for me personally.

ResidualVM got a mention for obvious reasons but also because I had a bit of fun with it.

I played through Grim Fandango on my mother’s laptop many years ago. If I mention it she still recognises the specific game I’m on about (my mother was never an “everything’s a Nintendo” person but I can’t say she knew the specifics either for the most part). I still listen to the soundtrack and wish I could experience more of the world that Tim Schafer created.

So obviously I want to share it with others. I have a Raspberry Pi setup in my living room and figured it’d be more fun if the game could be played on my TV at a suitable resolution.

Unfortunately ResidualVM isn’t available as a package for ARM-based Linux systems. The source code is there though and the dependencies aren’t an issue. Being that it’s an open source project that just meant grabbing the code and compiling it myself. This is something Linux detractors have often claimed is a regular thing for users of the OS. These days that’s complete bunk of course but it’s a little novel to do it from time to time.

I was amazed to find that the game compiled perfectly and ran straight away:

residualvm-raspberry-pi

Unfortunately it ran a bit too slowly to be playable. I would imagine with a bit of tweaking of the environment I could squeeze better performance from it. The audio didn’t work but that was something on the operating system level. I’m planning on fixing that and having another bash at it. I figure later in the program’s development there’ll be optimisation work that makes it run better.

The point being though that despite not being created for the RPi the nature of the code meant that it took less than an hour to get the game up and running on something else.

I don’t know about you but I think that’s pretty cool.

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