HOWTO - run 90210 demo

90210 is our first demo for PC and it was finished at spring 1995. So it is bugged, and these bugs will be NOT fixed, because we are unable to compile these old sources. But it is still possible to run it, if you have some luck and skill.

Firstly, which operating system is needed: You need MS-DOS (5.0+ ?), or Win95/98. And QEMM or some other memory manager, which will give you 626.080 BYTES of free base (640k) memory. (If you have Gravis Ultrasound, you need 10.000 B LESS of free memory, at least we hope ;) )

This will be probably the biggest problem, because 614kB of free base memory is nearly impossible to get. If you will get over this point, than it is very likely, that you will run 90210 successfully. 90210 should work under W95 well, but we suggest you to boot pure MS-DOS.Now, check, if you have at least about 1.5MB of free EMS memory. If not, than the trouble with memory continues. (QEMM is commercial software, what's pity, because with QEMM it's just a piece of cake)

Now, check, if your environment variable for your soundcard is correctly set (ULTRASND or BLASTER, depends on type of card).

We are getting to the execution:
write "90210" and hit enter. The demo should do one of these 4 things:

  1. demo runs ok, timing is ok, sound is ok. Sit down, and watch, you lucky one.
  2. demo runs, but timing is 2 times slower (you will notice this easily in the second part, where the chessboard does move only in B&W mode, and is colored after it stops). You may still watch the demo, it's not THAT different, but if you do care, hit some key, and try to run it again. If it wouldn't run ok even after 5-6th try, you may try to experiment with "turbo" button (if you have any), or try to reboot your computer with "reset" and once more ... Usually the re-run approach works, but you may be out of luck.
  3. demo runs, some white dot shows in middle of screen and exits immediately. This means, that you didn't release the enter key fast enough, and you have aborted demo. If you have that fast machine, that you are unable to release enter key before the demo performs first keyboard check, create a batch file, which will firstly do some time consuming task before running demo. At dos-prompt you may create the batch file by typing: copy con 0.bat type 90210.eng <enter> 90210.exe <enter> <CTRL + Z> <enter> Now run 0.bat, which will firstly type file 90210.eng at screen, thus giving you some time to release enter key.
  4. demo says something, that it has not enough EMS memory, and that it needs about -???? B more. (yes, negative number) This bug should appear, if (YOUR_MEMORY_IN_MB/32) = even number. (64MB RAM, 128MB RAM, etc...) In this case you must decrease the amount of free EMS memory by 32MB. For example you may load SMARTDRV with 32MB cache, or check your memory manager documentation.

If the demo does something else, than these 4 described things, than you have either failed to follow the instructions correctly, or you have too much exotic configuration to run this demo.
BTW, if there is someone, who is able to capture the demo in AVI file, we will be thankful for that (or even for some screenshots). Because we were unable to do it. And it will become harder and harder to run this demo with the time, so we want to have it in some viewable form.