I remember that both the Commodore C-64 and the Amiga had a thriving public domain, demo and freeware scene. While it was overshadowed by commercial games and applications, it was there and some of the games produced by enthusiasts were well done. If you look at the PC you will find that freeware games and games developed by independent developers are on the rise in last years. While most games cannot be compared visually with full priced computer games, some reach the same level of quality in areas like gameplay or story. Especially flash based games have made a huge leap forward in terms of quality.
Windows users who want to keep up to date with recent developments need to find ways to do so. They can follow specialized sites like Indiegames, YouTube video channels like that of The Cynical Brit or the Game Saturday series here on Ghacks.
But even if you follow several channels you will probably still miss out on some of the better games. Game Downloader is a free software for Windows that is more a less a constantly updated game download manager for free Windows PC games.
The portable application displays a listing of popular free games in various categories that can be downloaded directly from within the program's interface.
You pick a game category first. Available in the pulldown menu are game types such as turn-based strategy, puzzles, board games, first person shooters and sports games.
The list of available free games is the populated after the category has been selected. Each game is displayed with its version, a screenshot and game information. There are also links to YouTube, the game developer website, options to get the file size and to download the game.
Many great free Windows games are listed here, from Battle of Wesnoth and Freeciv in the turn-based strategy game section over Warsow and OpenArena in the first person shooter category to popular card and board games like Risk, Solitaire and Poker.
It is obviously possible to find and download the games manually on the Internet. The biggest achievement of the program is that it makes the whole process more comfortable. Plus, it offers all the information necessary to decide whether playing a particular game could be fun (including online and multiplayer)
Game Downloader on the other hand has a few shortcomings. A search is missing, as are detailed information like compatibility or sub-genres. It would have also been nice if the program would offer to download all games from a selected category automatically. The Pc game downloader furthermore does not highlight games that have already been downloaded or installed previously.
Windows users who want to dive deeper into the freeware games scene can use Game Downloader with its 100+ free games as a starting point. The program can be downloaded from the Sourceforge project website. (via)
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.