A Box Full Of Free: JogoBox

By Adam Smith on August 10th, 2012 at 1:00 pm.

Everybody's free (to play Eye of the Beholder)

JogoBox is a superb idea. Download the installer and run the file and, right there on your computer, is a window into the past. No, sod that, not a window, a gateway, because you can step right through this and be back in the time of DOS and Dune II. With an interface a little like Desura, JogoBox is a compilation of free games, a digital distribution service without any charges. The first screen that met me offered Lost Vikings, One Must Fall: 2097, Beneath a Steel Sky and (ugh) Rick Dangerous. It’s like having nostalgia injected into my eyeballs. Click one, it downloads, you play, with any necessary DOSboxing handled by JogoBox. There are some new freeware games as well. Get it here.

Given that Golden Axe, as just one example, is available in the JogoBox but is also for sale on Steam, I’m not convinced all of the existing content will remain in the box. When asked about the rights to the games by indiegames.com, co-creator Renate Geven’s response was thus: “…we try to focus on freeware and abandonware games. In most cases we contact the developers to ask their permission to distribute their game. In most cases, their response is positive because they see JogoBox as an extra platform to distribute their game on.” What about in the cases that aren’t ‘most’?

While there’s plenty of great stuff, special mention must be given to the grouping of games. The categories include ‘Girls’, so you could even let a lady play with your JogoBox. Or perhaps you are a lady! JogoBox will delight you.

“Play all kinds of fun girly games! Would you like to go on a date, decorate your room or perhaps marry Justin Bieber?”

To be fair, I’m not a girl and I don’t want to do any of those things so this is probably an accurate summation of womanly desires. Looking at the actual list, there’s a lot of games about making out and putting clothes on as well, and those are things that I’d rather do than marry Justin Bieber, so perhaps I am a bit of a girl.

Get the JogoBox here.

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63 Comments »

  1. frightlever says:

    I’d marry Justin Bieber. I’d be impossible to live with and he’d divorce me. Cha-ching!

    • NathanH says:

      Exactly. Even if he accidentally took a liking to you, it can’t be the worst way to make ridiculous amounts of money.

  2. NyuBomber says:

    “…so you could even let a lady play with your JogoBox. Or perhaps you are a lady! JogoBox will delight you.”

    …Yep.

  3. Tusque D'Ivoire says:

    Tiggit game installer needs another mention in this context, though it’s more present-y.

    more words: It looks a lot like foobar2000, and incidentally is also the perfect accompaniment if you wish to splay some spelunky to your Indiana Jones OST.

    Edit: OMG, this client has STUNTS on it, a game I just recently talked about in the excellent “games the world forgot about” thread in the forums. go play!

    • The First Door says:

      Oooh! Really? I remember Stunts so fondly, even though I spent most of my time falling off the track. I seem to remember all the cars handled like tanks, but I might just be remembering that because I was bitter about my lack of talent at it.

      • Tusque D'Ivoire says:

        Nope, I just gave it a try, it’s exactly like that. I just remembered how much I hated the barrel roll looping, and there it was, releasing me mid-air, upside-down, crushing my lambo. I also remember having had much more fun with the editor than with the cars.

        • The First Door says:

          Ah, well it’s good my memory isn’t too askew then! I do remember how easy it was to make utterly impossible tracks in the editor. Used to make a track with a friend then take turns to see who could finish it first or get the furthest before we got annoyed!

    • Frank says:

      Gah, the author(s) have surprisingly limited taste. Where’s Gunfu Deadlands, anything by Cactus, the rest of Hikware’s games, Spector Spelunker Shrinks…? For it to be useful, I’d expect at least the range of titles on TIGDB and Pixel Prospector

      EDIT: And it looks like JogoBox is just as current. It has “Super Adventure Pals” from last month!

    • AmateurScience says:

      Stunts! I had this on 51/4″ disc (remember those?) Love love loved this!

      Edit: I am still demonstrably awful at it too!

      • The Random One says:

        I remember Stunts! I’d spend half the time trying to cheat by driving offroad, half trying to create tracks you couldn’t cheat in by placing tunnels alongside the track (and failing because that would stop the game from understanding the path), and half creating levels I could cheat in easily so I’d see the hardest AI driver freaking out over losing.

    • Trelow says:

      Thanks for the notice about Tiggit. That fits my needs more than this does.

    • Megazell says:

      Ty very much. I had added this to my stack of links to read up on but I must have lost it in the shuffle. It’s now firmly burned into my freeware minded brain for eons to come!

  4. sinister agent says:

    Oh dear. I am torn between going WHEEE THIS SHOULD HAVE HAPPENED YEARS AGO HURRAH and “tut tsk, disapprove, a section named ‘girls’, scoff”.

    Edit: Oh, it’s a terrible flash rip-off called Bomb Jack, not actually Bomb Jack. And there’s a game in the “girls” section called “Suicide Point Kiss”, in which you have to keep kissing a boy to keep him from “leaving”.

    Somewhat ill-conceived.

    • Tusque D'Ivoire says:

      I agree, there’s also many dress-up games which might be better of in the japanese panty hose vending machine category…

  5. Nehacoo says:

    You should probably add a “sexism” tag.

  6. Jim9137 says:

    Okay, that’s cool and all, but does it do Bioforge?

  7. Anthile says:

    “Fury of the Furries” was not what I expected. That said, there don’t seem to be too many games there at the moment. It would be great if it could somehow access the whole Abandonia catalogue.

  8. Deadly Habit says:

    It has Dune, Dune 2, and Command & Conquer: Red Alert at first glance. I’m sold already!

  9. Archroy says:

    Anyone else running into an error when trying to install this?

    “Failed to download the needed files from the Internet. (87)”

  10. phlebas says:

    Do you have to install it to see the list of available games?

  11. MadMatty says:

    Downloaded Nexuiz, because it had screenshots of the new cryengine 3 remake- however, when i fired it up, its the old Q3 engine version :/

  12. Revisor says:

    But what do they want for it? This is created by a for-profit corporation running flash game websites, surely they aren’t doing it from the goodness of their hearts.

    Is there a drive-by install of a browser toolbar or even a browser? Ads for their websites? Spyware?

    Sorry, I’m paranoid.

    • skorpeyon says:

      Exactly what I’m wondering, but to be fair they may be trying to gauge interest and drum up a userbase before they go and attempt to pull something along the lines of GoG’s lineup of pay-for old games but using a more Steam-like client. There’s been many for-profit companies that have started out with a free offering and then moved on to the actual “now if you want to buy something…” part.

  13. vanosofmanos says:

    Epic sadness: it doesn’t seem to want to run for me, even though it seems to install fine. Curse my craptacular computer!

  14. yogibbear says:

    There’s a game called gold digging… it’s sadly not in the girly section. :(

  15. The Random One says:

    Seems sketchy, mostly because I’m sure that any old game that would be possible to distribute for free is already on GoG for free (Beneath a Steel Sky is there, for one). Some of the comments here make me raise my eyebrows even further.

    BUT IT’S GOT GAMEZ 4GURLZ OMG

    • Shuck says:

      I rather think they don’t have the rights to distribute some of these games. Even if, in some cases, they contacted the developers, that doesn’t necessarily mean much because the developers may not own the rights themselves. I suspect in some of these cases, there simply isn’t anyone left who gives enough of a damn to actually do anything about it. (Though they also seem to be obscuring any infringement by hiding their catalog behind their installer, thus making it harder for rights-holders to detect, much less take issue with what they’re doing.)

      • datom says:

        That’s a good point, and maybe why there is no list of games available online. Tread carefully!

      • Roshin says:

        The fact that they wont list the available games and don’t even mention copyrights makes it feel a bit dodgy, which is a pity, because it’s a good idea.

  16. Shazbut says:

    Hmm….a lot of the games seem to be tat. Also, it wasn’t easy for me to find BASS in the adventure section, but it was on the front page. Needs a bit of organising, I think.

  17. Dreforian says:

    Someone already mentioned Beneath a Steel Sky and GoG so I’ll just add that GoG also has Tyrian2000 for free. HUGE shootemup game that is actually available for free from the man who did the music as well but GoG also provides the separate soundtrack.
    OMF 2097 would likely be a pleasure to play again along with anything else that was in that shareware family back in the day. Does it have Radix? Jazz Jackrabbit? Also, does the ‘box support gravis ultrasound?

  18. squidlarkin says:

    I was delighted and confused to see Intrusion 2 on there, a $10 recent release. Turns out it’s an outdated version of the demo with no music. This whole thing feels like one of those 1,001 GAMES ON ONE DISC compilations and I’m not sure it’s worth sifting through all the crap to find the few worthwhile games of dubious legality.

    • SkittleDiddler says:

      The whole package has a very slapdash, unprofessional feel to it. People installing this thing are jumping the gun, methinks; at least wait until all the legalities and cease-and-desist requests have been cleared up.

  19. kud13 says:

    does it have the original Microsoft Monster Truck Madness?

  20. Yglorba says:

    The categories here seem a bit weirdly-chosen (especially given that Tiggit had such clever ones and allowed multiple categories.) The “girls” category annoys me slightly, but the “PC games” category is just confusing in all sorts of ways. If that’s the PC games category, what do the games in the other categories run on? And… they didn’t think it’d be worth dividing them up a bit?

  21. jayc4life says:

    Installer for Dutch flash game rip-offs and stuff I can easily emulate elsewhere? nothankyou.jpg

    No seriously, there was a blatant Worms rip-off on there only it had hedgehogs instead of worms. And i sincerely doubt they have the rights to put Civilization I up on there too.

  22. TaroYamada says:

    The girl section makes sense to me, there are clearly games designed to appeal to young ladies in the section. I am not sure where else you folks would have them placed, I suppose it’s just another case of moral codes interfering with what seems to be fairly sensible.

  23. august says:

    Yes, let’s run out and install software that delivers clearly pirated games to our pcs, along with whatever else the unscrupulous devs find appealing.

    I’m genuinely shocked that this story is on RPS. I thought you guys were better than this.

    • Megazell says:

      Which games on their system are pirated?

      • Alextended says:

        Did you read the article and its “just one example”? How about Golden Axe?

        • Megazell says:

          Golden Axe, Altered Beast and one of the Alex Kidd was free for a long time on dotemu and GreenManGaming during that time those that took part in it kept it forever like the Portal giveaway STEAM did. I’m thinking it’s something like that. I’ve already made a request regarding the game so I can post it. I was thinking from how you worded your post you was talking about a game they did not mention.

          • Alextended says:

            It’s nothing like 100% off sale deals, no. Duh.

            Also, I’m not august.

            And yes, there are games RPS didn’t mention.

            Because they mentioned just one example.

  24. Megazell says:

    Awesome! Freeware PC Games Forever!

  25. Alextended says:

    With the shady so called abandon-ware crap and the way they’ve set it up this reeks of using others’ work for their own gain (look forward to the built in ads, bro). The website doesn’t include any information so people can’t just discover games and then choose how to acquire them (this probably helps them go by undetected longer, even companies and individuals whose IP rights are being violated with the content would have to install the client or hear of it elsewhere to find out as a simple search wouldn’t work). I mean, even Steam lets you browse the games outside the client.

    Anyway, I have no use for things like this unless they add mirrors to games that have lost their official mirrors or are otherwise hard to find, like Dot Fighters of which it was quite hard to find the latest version last I checked. If all they’re going to have is games I already know of and could have had if I wanted them because I follow the various decent indie and freebie websites out there, it’s not doing anything for me. I try to avoid getting yet more silly distribution clients (and so love gog.com).

  26. Bobtree says:

    Too shady for me. I’m going to avoid this on principle.

  27. gamer99 says:

    LOL, I really liked the site, especially the girl’s section, with the compilation of justin bieber games, can’t believe people actually play these games.

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