Amiga Forever Review: Award Winning Amiga Emulator

Amiga Forever is a project which not only aims to preserve this valuable piece of digital culture, it also closes the gap between gaming and productivity while introducing plenty of modern day features which open up a world of infinite possibilities. This award-winning emulator provides its users with plenty of legal, cost-free downloads as well as original content meant to showcase the rich history behind the Amiga. As this emulator was released by Cloanto who has had a hand in the Amiga's development since 1986, you can be sure that Amiga Forever offers an unsurpassed, nostalgic experience, albeit a few of the conveniences found in modern day software.

Goodbye Consoles

So with all that considered, why should you go for an emulator in the first place? Well, there are two things that may make you want to jump at the chance to go for one of the Amiga Forever packages. The first would be for those who have experienced hearing the sound of booting up a floppy disk, seen the familiar shade of blue of the Workbench screen and every single word that appears on the startup sequence. All of these are accurately recreated down to the boot-up time and the melodic sound of the floppy drive as it performs a head seek. Amiga Forever is perfect for collectors looking for authenticity as well as those who get a kick out of seeing something from their childhood.

Now, for modern day gamers, this emulator allows an experience like no other. Not only will you own a piece of history made by developers who know the software like the back of their hand, there's also a wealth of knowledge to be gained through the Gallery and Videos portion of the software. This includes various items of interest about the Amiga as well as events which have lead up to the basis of today's computers. All of these were carefully restored, allowing you to interact with, say, the Workbench 1.0, as it is mentioned in a video. You can boot up the system and play Kick Off 2 or watch the bouncing Boing Ball demo as if you are living in that very same moment. With so many games and genres out in the market, it is easy to forget that all of these originated from simple things -- an idea, or in Amiga's case, a demo which demonstrated the physics and multitasking capabilities of the hardware.

Old School Gaming for Modern Users

As Amiga Forever is an emulator made with today's gamer in mind, it has been adapted to work with modern operating systems. There is no need to do anything special for it to to be compatible with your existing internet connection, monitor and CD drive. You don't have to bother with setting up file systems or drivers either. Everything works out of the box, ready to run whenever you wish to use it. Additionally, it has a number of features which the original Amiga does not have such as support for a mouse as well as a web browser that is preconfigured to make use of standard keyboard shortcuts that are found in the PC, Mac or Linux operating systems.

As you may have guessed, Amiga Forever isn't just your typical emulator. With this software, you will be able to run all versions of the operating system. With its support for the WHDLoad "kickemu" Light Environment, you can choose to boot the emulator from a DVD or install it fully to your hard disk without the need for a host OS. Hours and hours of entertainment await as every Amiga game and demoscene production is right at your fingertips. Finding your way around the menus is easy too, as every piece of content is accessible through a single click of the button. If you have a fondness for authoring, the versatile RP9 editor gives you the chance to edit playback configurations or even create your own.

The Practical Collector’s Choice

As it gives you a few editions to choose from, you don't need to splurge just to enjoy Amiga Forever. For those on a budget, the Value Edition includes two versions of the Amiga OS and so it already runs over 70% of the game library. Fifty classic games are included in this edition so you're definitely getting a high value for a minimum amount of money. Now, if that just won't do and you want the best in everything, the the Plus or Premium (this contains additional videos) Editions should be perfect for you. That way, you will have more than a hundred games at your disposal as well as every ROM and OS versions ever released.

Classics are Forever

So why should gamers want to play an Amiga in an age of motion-control, always connected consoles? Fans old and new would agree that there is a certain charm that is unique to retro gaming. Considering the system's capabilities for its time, it's no surprise that many AAA developers got their first big break on the Amiga. With this emulator, you get access to timeless classics such as Golden Axe, Wing Commander, Quake and Duke Nukem 3D. If a title you are interested in is not included by default on the package you are purchasing, it is easy enough to find and legally download them through the sites endorsed by the developers themselves. If you find the use of a keyboard and mouse too clunky for your tastes, pair it with a joystick or even an Xbox controller and you're all set. What's more, there's no need to shell out beyond purchasing the emulator. There are thousands of gaming gems readily available from software publishers.