As many retro fans will know, two of the best ways to emulate classic LucasArts adventure games have traditionally been to use either ScummVM or DOSBox – one being a game engine recreation, while the other is a more of a general purpose emulator on which to play your favourite DOS titles. But recently, a former LucasArts developer named Aaron Giles has released another exciting of playing your favourite LucasArts adventure games — one he states may actually be closer to the real thing, warts and all.
DREAMM (or Dos Retro-Emulation Arena for Maniac Mansion, to give it its lengthy backronym) is the name of this new emulator, and is described on Giles' website as a way "to play your original DOS LucasArts adventure games with full fidelity to the original, without the hassle of setting up a general-purpose emulator."
How it works is that it runs the original SPUTM (SCUMM Presentation Utility (TM)) engine code in an x86 emulator, as opposed to using reverse-engineering, as in the case of something like ScummVM.
Unlike DOSBox, it's also optimised for SCUMM first and foremost, with better mouse cursor control integration, less screen tearing and more idle time given back to your system. This means that you will likely get more of the original features and behaviours of your classic adventure games, with much less hassle overall.
According to Giles, so far DREAMM will be able to run all the known DOS and FM Towns versions of the SCUMM games, along with the Windows-only version of The Curse of Monkey Island.
Here's the full list:
- Maniac Mansion (both low and high-resolution versions)
- Zak McKracken & the Alien Mindbenders (both low and high-resolution versions, plus FM Towns version)
- Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: The Graphic Adventure (both EGA and VGA versions, plus FM Towns version)
- Loom (both EGA and VGA versions, including CD-ROM talkie, plus FM Towns version)
- The Secret of Monkey Island (both EGA and VGA versions, including CD-ROM music, plus FM Towns version)
- Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge (including FM Towns version)
- Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis (both floppy and CD-ROM talkie versions, plus FM Towns version)
- Day of the Tentacle (both floppy and CD-ROM talkie versions)
- Sam & Max Hit the Road (both floppy and CD-ROM talkie versions)
- Full Throttle (CD-ROM)
- The Dig (CD-ROM)
- The Curse of Monkey Island (CD-ROM)
For a lengthy guide on how to set up and configure DREAMM, we recommend checking out Giles' website. The emulator comes highly recommended, including from the LucasArts aficionados over at mixnmojo who have claimed to have already put it through its paces.