My all-time favorite video game is Oids, released for the Atari ST by FTL games in 1987. I still have a working Atari 520 ST (upgraded to a 1040) and my original Oids disk. But digging it all out and setting it up is a pain. Plus the mouse is a bit twitchy and the monitor is so much smaller than I’m used to now. For years, I’ve dreamed of having a PC version but no one has ever ported it over. There is a mac version, but I don’t have a mac and this isn’t enough of a reason for me to get one. Happily, I’ve recently discovered a workable solution!
EmuParadise is a site containing software that emulates all sorts of gaming consoles and older computer systems, thus allowing you to run the antiquated games that we all remember so fondly from our youth. In addition, this site serves as a library for all the gaming titles that ran on these old systems.
There are other such sites out there and I have looked at some of them briefly before, but I always found them intimidating and bordering on the less savory corners of the internet. This time, I was a bit more driven and committed to finding a way to play Oids on my PC.
Getting the Software
I located the Oids page and downloaded a ROM image of the game. In addition to the game, you need a copy of the operating system (TOS). There are links for both of these located on the page.
Lastly, you need the emulator itself. EmuParadise has tons of emulators. But I could not find one for the Atari ST. In retrospect, the Atari Jaguar emulator probably would have worked but I did not know that at the time and never tried it. Instead, I was referred to the Hatari emulator. Many different versions are available there. I downloaded v1.8.0 for 64-bit Windows.
Note that the Hatari emulator comes with EmuTOS. I was able to get Oids to load with this but it immediately crashed. Using the TOS downloaded from EmuParadise’s Oids page worked perfectly though.
Making It All Work
Copy all three files (Game file: “Oids (1987)(FTL).zip”, TOS: “tos_us.zip”, Emulator: “hatari-1.8.0_windows64.zip”) into a directory and unzip them (into the same directory).
Erase “tos.img” or rename it as something else. This is EmuTOS and it won’t work for us here so we don’t need it. Rename “Tos102us.img” as “tos.img”.
Rename “Oids (1987)(FTL).stx” as “oids.stx” (just for simplicity).
Create a windows desktop icon to start the game. Right click on the desktop. Click new and then shortcut. Browse to the directory where you put everything and select hatari.exe. Name the shortcut Oids. Then right click on the desktop icon and select properties. The “Target” field should have hatari.exe, preceded by the path to the directory it is in. At the end of the line, add a space followed by “oids.stx”. Click “OK”.
The desktop icon should now start Oids.
Note: The above is absolutely everything I know about emulators. If you have any trouble, I doubt that I can be of any help. Try the EmuParadise Forums. It looks like a very active site and you should be able to get an answer to any problems you encounter very quickly.