The iPad has become a surprise home for legions of old skool PC classics.

Boot up the App Store and you can take hurricane history lessons in strategy epics, text adventures, and prestigious retro favourites.

If you want to sample the earliest shooters, just try Doom, Wolfenstein, and Marathon. If you want a crash course on point-and-clickers, look no further than Monkey Island and Simon the Sorcerer.

But we want more. Our appetite for creaky old strategy games and impregnably illogical adventures is insatiable. Delivering these choice 20 to the App Store would be a good start.

Theme Hospital


Manage an oddball GP, as dreamed up by Lionhead-nutter Peter Molyneux. Your patients will suffer from bloated heads, uncontrollable Elvis impersonations, and corrugated ankles.

Now EA has the rights to port and remake old Bullfrog games (like Theme Park, which is confirmed for an iOS comeback), it's only a matter of time...



Interplay's post-apocalyptic RPG drops you in a dusty wasteland, ravaged by war. You'll have to pick up a weapon, drop some super mutants, and head off in search of water, salvation, and answers. It's a dire situation, but it's all presented with some jet-black humour.

Diablo II pc-classics-ipad-diablo-2

Blizzard's hellish rat-clicker is the definitive watermark for loot-addicts. As you traipse through dungeons and crypts, wailing on imps and other-such nasties, you'll be constantly finding bonus swords and shields in their charred remains.

Hunting down your next rare find has left many gamers in a trance-like grip for months.

Plenty of games, including a few iOS apps, have tried to emulate Diablo's potent magic, but few have come close to succeeding.

The Dig


Comedic adventure studio LucasArts took a day off from delivering funnies to present The Dig, a serious and sombre meditation on finding life out in the universe. If it comes to iPad, we demand it ships alongside an iBook detailing its long, troubled, and illustrious history.



Sci-fi strategy game StarCraft is such a hit in South Korea that it might as well be the country's national sport. The game, which has three distinct races battling it out for diminished resources and planetary dominance, has professional players, sponsorships and televised tournaments in Asia.

Dropping the original game onto the App Store would increase iPad sales by, oooh, about seven million percent in South Korea. We'd be happy, too, as it's one of the best balanced strategy games out there.

The Sims


Sorry EA, but The Sims 3, Ambitions and World Adventures just aren't going to cut it. We want to play the original, with its dodgy Latin tunes during Build mode and the stuffy Goth family down the road.

Also, what happened to the inventive ways you could kill your Sims? We miss shoving the babbling goons into burning rooms before removing the door, or letting them take a relaxing swim before nixing the pool's ladder. Mwa ha ha ha!

Civilisation II


No, we're not talking about the cute and cuddly Civlization Revolution. That was for armchair dictators and casual emperors only. We want the old classic, complete with all the depth and cunning and complexity of yore.

Revolution is perfect for a little diplomacy on the bus, but we want to really get stuck in with hours-long wars and endless negotiations with that jerk Montezuma.

Grim Fandango


It's fitting that LucasArts's last great adventure is all about death. Skeletal hero Manny Calavera is a travel agent in purgatory who sells people safe passage to the afterlife. It unfolds into a noir-themed epic about love, life, redemption, and fire-breathing gophers.

Thanks to its clunky old controls and desperately aged graphics, LucasArts's morbid swan song is dying for a remake.

Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings pc-classics-ipad-age-of-empires-2

It's probably unlikely that Age of Empires will appear on iPad, seeing as arch-rival Microsoft holds the game's IP - but we can dream, right?

Empires is a real-time strategy game in the world of knights and castles. You've got to juggle building a prosperous mediaeval city with fending off opponents from around the countryside. Do you barricade yourself in a walled fortress or suit up and hunt down weaker villages? Up to you, really.

Dungeon Keeper


The best thing about Dungeon Keeper - the last game that Peter Molyneux made for Bullfrog - is its wicked sense of humour. Not content to splash your screen with scenes of blood, gore and oppression, this lair simulator likes to crack a gag or two about the pain and suffering of the tortured. Just the way we like it.

X-COM: UFO Defense


In 1994, noted strategy genius Jullian Gollop thought aliens would invade Earth in 1998. He reckoned that humans would band together, create an anti-alien task force, and get to work on battering their extra terrestrial brains and blowing up their silly UFO things.

Then he thought that humans would discover that the aliens came from Mars and we'd send a strike team to the red planet to nuke their entire species. Well it's 2011 and none of that has happened. Not quite a genius now, are you, Gollop?

Warcraft pc-classics-ipad-warcraft

Warcraft wasn't always about raids, looting, and mounts. It wasn't always about monthly subscriptions and addictive hours-long sessions and gold farming. It wasn't always about tie-in Slurpee cups, collectible card games and adverts with Mr. T. It used to be a real-time strategy game, and it'd find a perfect home on tablets.

Jagged Alliance


So here's the setup: research boffins make camp on the fictional island of Metavira. There, they come across mutated plants that ooze gooey medicinal sap. The discovery polarises the team, splitting the scientists between harnessing the plant life for good, and stealing it for profit.

As the greedy, treacherous Santino decides to take over the island, and its special trees, by force, you'll have to recruit mercenaries to fend him off and claim the trees for science.

It's one of the best a tactical role-playing games about, and if it can get a remake on DS, an iPad release is a no-brainer.

The Neverhood


Not enough games are made out of clay, are they? Ignored in favour of photo-real CGI and cartoony cel-shading, it's a sadly neglected art style. Luckily for us, one game had the decency to deck its characters, items, worlds, and menus in Plasticine - barmy point-and-clicker The Neverhood.

Neverhood, the brainchild of Earthworm Jim-designer Doug TenNapel, didn't get much love when it was first released - probably because it debuted during the cataclysmic plummet of the adventure genre - but it might fare better today on iPad.

Day of the Tentacle


A bonkers point-and-clicker from the diseased mind of Tim Schafer. You play as three layabout teens, trapped in the past, present, and future. They'll have to use time-travelling port-a-potties to work together and stop the world-domineering plans of a maniacal purple tentacle.

The Last Express


The Last Express - a vaguely real-time adventure, set on a speeding train, with rotoscoped, art nouveau actors - is one of the most ambitious adventures of all time. And, like everything good and pure and holy in the world - it was completely neglected by the masses.

Jordan Mechner's other game - Prince of Persia - has received endless remakes, sequels, 3D reboots, and a movie with Jake Gyllenhaal. So can't his much loved but under-appreciated follow-up get a lousy iPad remake?

Leisure Suit Larry


In Leisure Suit Larry, a comedy point-and-click series from Sierra, you can have sex with a prostitute - but if you forget to slip on a condom you'll catch a disease and die.

On reflection, then, it probably wouldn't slip past the censors at Apple.

But, on the other hand, the game does quiz you on American presidents to make sure you're old (or well-read) enough to see digital boobies. It's quite the conundrum.



Isometric fun from EA. As you guide a clan of cyborg super agents about a cyberpunk world, it's your job to assassinate baddies, infiltrate buildings, capture noted boffins, and wipe the area clean of rival agents.

Talk of a full-on reboot has been buzzing about the internet for years (and rumours suggest a bang-up-to-date comeback at Gamescom 2011), but an iPad remake would do just fine for now.

Rollercoaster Tycoon


It's great news that EA is bringing Theme Park to iPhone and iPad, but that's not the only the game out there that simulates managing a fun park, building rollercoasters, and vomiting your guts out.

MicroProse's Rollercoaster Tycoon is as much about running a theme park as it is about meticulously designing, testing, and naming the rides. Oh, and you can make a deadly 'coaster that sends all of your riders to their grisly demise, if you fancy.



From Monkey Island to Simon the Sorcerer, and from Flight of the Amazon Queen to Broken Sword, point-and-click adventures are a well established genre on the iPad. But if we could be really greedy, and ask for just one more, it would be Discworld.

Set in Terry Pratchett's absurd fantasy universe (which is riding on the back of a magic space-dwelling turtle, if you weren't aware), wizard Rincewind has to solve a bunch of mad puzzles to rid the land of a dragon.

Best of all is the incredible voice cast, culled from Monty Python and other British comedies. There's Eric Idle, Jon Pertwee, and Tony Robinson, just to name a few.

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