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Saturday, Dec 9, 2023


This game blew everyone′s minds when it came out. Full true 3d. I remember spending a lot of time learning to interpret the wireframe 3d maps initially. Soon though you got really good at remember if you were right-side-up or down and if that meant you needed to go left or right. This game was one of those very few truly transformative games. It altered everything. It truly immersed you in a world better than any other game ever had. I spent so many hours play this and its sequels and love them to this day. Descent is a MUST PLAY GAME for any gamer.

Descent is absolutely my #1 game of all time. Singleplay was OK, but multiplayer was the real joy for me. So many memories over the years. From the early days of the shareware demo (Which actually came out in late 1994).. There was a bug in the demo where when you played a modem game, the sound would keep going "POP, POP, POP, POP" about once every few seconds. Anyone remember that? I used to play modem to modem games with some of my local friends. Then, once the internet started cathing on, I signed up for Kali and started playing multiplayer internet games around late 1996, early 1997. There were some good players, and competition was fierce. Joystick was practically required if you didn′t want to get stomped. I honed my skills during this time and got a lot better. The network code must have been pretty robust to be able to play smoothly over the internet at the time. It was awesome.

I took a break from the game for a while, but I remember having another renaissance around 2000-2002 and getting really competitive on the 1-on-1 ladders. My favorite levels were Minerva (of course), Athena, Thanatos SS.

I haven′t played it as much in recent years, but I still have one friend back from the "glory days" of Kali who I know still plays it competitively online. There′s still a small but thriving community as of early 2014. Of course people don′t still use the old DOS version and haven′t for 15+ years to play online, but there are more modern engine ports, I think most people use DXX-Rebirth these days, but there′s also D1x which is what I used to use back around the 2000 era.

Anyway. I have many, many memories of this game and I could probably write a book about it... But I won′t, here... For now anyway.

To sum it up: If you have never played Descent, you missed out and you should try it NOW!!!

DosBox 0.74 + Win7 (64bit) Works

I like others here posting LOVED (love?) this game and spent hours playing it. One thing that stunk is its a game that never moved forward with new hardware and like Heathcliff says - something about this version (the feel of it, the flying smooth feel no glitching, pausing or hesitation on the graphics?) I dunno... This is a GREAT GAME! A CLASSIC in my eyes.

Note: You need to experiment with the SETUP.EXE to get the right sound card and "music card" set up correctly. Note - that in the setup program I never heard good sounds - just sound. Running the game sometimes had no sound even though the setup played this weird noise, and no music, then eventually I chose sound blaster (simple as I could find for both music and sound) and then when I played the game the sound worked great even though in the setup program it didn′t play anything but a sad static like sound. Ah well...

Here′s my only gripe: The DosBox utility can play this game but the game runs TOO TOO FAST! (No timer code! slight (major) programmer oversight) So I use the CNTL+F11 key combo to slow the CPU and it works BUT it like goes "normal" then speeds up, then back to normal (normal my newly adjusted play speed) Kinda like DosBox can′t REALLY control the speed that well - maybe due to other things my computer is doing? I dunno - in short - it doesn′t play with the same fluid feeling the game had when I used to play it years back. this is a hardware issue (and the fact that the game doesn′t have CLOCK aware timer code to regulate the game′s speed internally in the game like all games do case you faster hardware.)

So excited I have the game - but I don′t think I′ll be playing it much to be honest because of the CPU/game speed thing not being steady.

Ahh ... The first (truly 3D) 3D FPS.

This is a classic that I still love to play. I had forgotten how much fun running these mines could be, and as soon as I dropped into the first level, I started remembering my way around. Descent 2 and 3 were wonderful follow ups to the original, but there is something about this one that just reminds me of my first 486 and all the gaming possibilities it would unlock.

I will always give Id and the Quake series it′s due. They designed a great engine and a wonderful story, However, Descent, the first game to give 6 degrees of freedom, (that was one of the advertising lines) did everything Quake would do a year or so later .... you know, minus the demons and stuff left over from Doom I and II.

My only complaint is that the story is a little lacking, and at 30 levels (counting the secret ones) it could really drag on. The counter-point to that is that Parallax released the source code to it within a couple of years of the initial release of the game. and that led to a ton of user created content. (And I am a fan of my mods)

Anywho, can′t say enough good about it .... don′t forget to check out 2 and 3 ...

To those who loved descent I and II and would like to play on modern hardware and at modern monitor resolutions, check out This is a port of Descent for modern hardware, for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It corrects bugs that the game had, and improves the graphics.

THIS IS THE SHAREWARE VERSION, which is not indicated here but should be.

You can′t save, and there′s probably a lot of other missing content. Great demo, though. It runs a bit slow in DOSBOX unless you set the cycles right. Crashes on my machine if set too high with direct draw for output. Didn′t experiment with other settings.

I used to play Descent day and night. It was the most fascinating game of its time. I don′t know what more to say other than I was addicted and loved the game. I haven′t played in over fifteen years and was unaware that the game still existed. I have Windows 10 is there any way to play the game now? Are there still joysticks? Can′t play effectively without them please help an old Descent junkie.

Yes, this is the shareware version, but it got me into this old series. If you want a HD version of this, here′s the link. (It′s the same textures and sounds, but it keeps it at the original speed, and lets you make it 1080P, with some fancy OpenGL, Anisotropic filtering, Etc..)

there is light at the end of the tunnel!

Share your gamer memories, help others to run the game or comment anything you′d like. If you have trouble to run Descent first! Your nickname: Your comment: Version: Any DOS Mac Send comment Buy Descent

Buy Descent for a small price and enjoy a complete game with music, voices and videos! Most of the games available on GoG, Steam or Origin run instantly. Descent is available on the following sites: Buy it on GoG

  • Release name: Inferno, Descent: Destination Saturn, Descent 1
  • Year: 1995
  • Platform: DOS
  • Released in: United States
  • Genre: Action
  • Theme: Arcade, FPS, Sci-Fi / Futuristic, Shooter
  • Publisher: Interplay Productions, Inc.
  • Developer: Parallax Software Corp.
  • Perspective: 1st-Person
  • Dosbox support – Fully supported on current version

12 thoughts on “Descent – Download”

  1. How do you use the Mac version: ZIP file is empty? If you don′t want to upload an iso could you at least upload the data files (DESCENT.PIG & .HOG as well as CHAOS.MSN & .HOG) in a zip? Mac data isn′t available digitally.

  2. @PLAYER1 : You can save in the shareware game, but you can′t do it in the middle of a mission. You have to finish the level first. Game runs ok for me in dosbox with cycles at 15000.

  3. @jegas , you could try to edit the conf file in dosbox by double-clicking it and
    then try changing cpu cycles from auto to max? just have a look and play around
    with the conf file.
    there are a few different things you can adjust but cpu

  4. Abandonware has gotten into EA′s line of money grubbing, most games have had there full versions replaced with shareware and GoG links added. Way to suck…

  5. @Jagas – I find that it runs nicely in DOSBOX 0.74, and I generally start out withthe following conf and tweak from there:

    fullscreen=false | fulldouble=false | fullresolution=original
    windowresolution=800×600 | output=ddraw | autolock=

  6. I always loved this game! The idea was simple, but effective…

    Can′t remember how much hours I spent with this one (f.e. I played the sequel Descent II only a few times), it′s really worth a look if someone still doesn′t know it… 😉

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