Random VGA question: 160x200 "high color" mode?

Robert Feldman r_a_feldman at hotmail.com
Wed Mar 2 12:25:16 CST 2016

>Message: 12
>Date: Tue, 1 Mar 2016 19:30:27 -0800
>From: Josh Dersch <derschjo at gmail.com>
>Subject: Random VGA question: 160x200 "high color" mode?
>Awhile back a "pre-alpha" version of the PC classic "DOOM" was unearthed
>(dated Feb 28, 1993), and it claims to support a "high color" VGA mode.
>From the README.TXT:
 >        "Use High-color DAC (160 x200, but great color!)
>         (Only newer VGA cards have this-if it looks OK, ya got it)
>         (This may--okay, will--REALLY screw up the playscreen's
>          graphics.  Just look at the neat colors and don't worry.)"
>I've tried it on a number of machines (from the 386 era to a modern PC)
>and they all just end up showing garbage when this mode is enabled.  I
>cannot for the life of me find a reference to this mode existing
>anywhere, but I assume it must have worked on *some* SVGA chipset of the
>era since ID programmed in support for it.  I'm guessing it was cut
>because nothing else supported it (and because 160x200 must have looked
>awful, even with lots of colors...)
>Does this odd video mode ring any bells with anyone out there?  Any idea
>what hardware to look for that might support it?  At this point I'm more
>curious about the actual hardware than getting this pre-alpha to run
>with it...
>- Josh

Try sending a message to Jim Leonard (trixter at oldskool.org). 
He has done a lot of work with old PC graphics modes and might know about this mode.


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