December 21 brought a lot of good news, including the fact that the world somehow didn’t end after all, but the real revelation to celebrate was that the classic Grim Fandango is now playable on modern PCs. The first stable release of ResidualVM hit on that fateful day, doing a similar sort of thing for LucasArts’ later adventure games what ScummVM does for the earlier classics.
Grim Fandango was made in the days of Windows 98, so it’s been wonky on everything since Windows XP. ResidualVM uses the game’s data files and replaces the executable with one friendlier to modern computers. You won’t need to mess with custom installers or use tools to slow your CPU, no no, simply remove your copy of Grim Fandango from its shrine, copy the data files over, and fire up ResidualVM.
“We would like to note that, while we have tested ResidualVM quite thoroughly, there MIGHT be cases where you end up in a situation where the game is incompletable, some of these were actually also existent in the original game (while the game itself is designed to be dead-end-free, the bugs in it weren’t, nor were our own),” the team said in the launch announcement. “So, please follow the old adventure-game mantra of ‘save early, save often’.”
While you’re staying in a parental home for Christmas, have a good root around in the attic to dig up your copy of Grim Fandango and get playing.
One plucky fan is already working on a mod to improve Grim Fandango’s interface, including that hideous inventory system.