Getting Doomsday 2000 working on simulated Alpha OpenVMS 8.4-2

It always amazes me when such gems emerge due to somebody’s will to learn something.

Schola ludus

Here is a short howto on  how to get this special game working on our simulated Alpha OpenVMS

The creation of this game began in late 1986 as a means for the author to learn the C programming language while working for DEC. The game was developed under the VMS operating system on a DEC VAX mainframe computer; a VAX workstation was used in later years. The first version was released after nearly a year of development and testing to DEC employees worldwide over the Internet in 1987; the author kept a large world map on the wall of his office and had a pushpin placed where ever a DEC office was known to have employees playing the game (there were lots of pins). Although titled Doomsday 2000, within DEC the game was known simply as Doom.

Doomsday 2000, Copyright (c) 1987 as an unpublished work by Dave Scheifle

You can download the ZIP archive from the OpenVMS Hobbyist site from here
Download @

In order to extract the ZIP archive on OpenVMS we need the UNZIP.EXE freeware utlity from HP

Please note that unzipping the DOOM.ZIP on Linux an Copying over the extracted DOOM.BCK  won’t work.

In my scenario it was uploading via FTP to my OpenVMS Alphavm simulation
Do not forget to set to BIN transfer !!

Here is the command sequence I have used

user@PANASONIC ~/Downloads/DOOM $ ftp
Connected to
220 openvms.local FTP Server (Version 5.6) Ready.
Name ( system
331 Username system requires a Password
230 User logged in.
Remote system type is VMS.
ftp> bin
200 TYPE set to IMAGE.
ftp> mkdir SOFTWARE
257 "SYS$SYSROOT:[SYSMGR.SOFTWARE]" directory created.
ftp> cd SOFTWARE
250-CWD command successful.
250 New default directory is SYS$SYSROOT:[SYSMGR.SOFTWARE]
ftp> mkdir DOOM
257 "SYS$SYSROOT:[SYSMGR.SOFTWARE.DOOM]" directory created.
ftp> cd DOOM
250-CWD command successful.
250 New default directory is SYS$SYSROOT:[SYSMGR.SOFTWARE.DOOM]
ftp> put unzip.exe 
local: unzip.exe remote: unzip.exe
200 PORT command successful.
150 Opening data connection for SYS$COMMON:[SYSMGR.SOFTWARE.DOOM]unzip.exe; (,46299)
142336 bytes sent in 0.01 secs (13.2393 MB/s)
ftp> put
local: remote:
200 PORT command successful.
150 Opening data connection for SYS$COMMON:[SYSMGR.SOFTWARE.DOOM]; (,52373)
226 Transfer complete.
1342976 bytes sent in 0.17 secs (7.7085 MB/s)

Now that we have the files on the OpenVMS, go to a console and extract the ZIP

 inflating: doom.bck 
$ FIXBCK doom.bck
Listing of save set(s)

Save set: DOOM.BCK
Written by: SMILEY 
UIC: [000001,000005]
Date: 30-JUN-2002 12:31:13.26
Operating system: OpenVMS Alpha version V7.2
BACKUP version: AXP72R001
CPU ID register: 80000000
Written on: _DEFCON$DKA100:
Block size: 32256
Group size: 10
Buffer count: 67

[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM.COM;2 1 13-JUL-2001 20:07
[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM.DAT;1 0 10-APR-1988 20:56
[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM.DOC;1 33 23-DEC-1987 10:27
[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM.EXE;1 979 29-DEC-1987 17:34
[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM.HLP;1 55 28-DEC-1987 11:26
[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM.LOG;1 8 10-APR-1988 21:21
[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM.OPT;2 1 10-APR-1988 21:27
[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM.SCB;4 3 13-JUL-2001 20:08
[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM_TV.EXE;1 4000 9-JUL-2001 22:31
[GAMES.DOOMV1]DOOM_TV.LIS;1 8 9-JUL-2001 22:28

Total of 10 files, 5088 blocks
End of save set


The above command sequence was inspired by the following discussion

Note that for the ALPHA we need to execute the DOOM_TV.EXE since the DOOM.EXE is for VAX architecture, so  from the DW-MOTIF desktop simply navigate to the directory and execute  doom_tv.exe

This game is COMPLEX !

And some README

Here is a video of some more games on OpenVMS Alpha :)



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3 Responses to Getting Doomsday 2000 working on simulated Alpha OpenVMS 8.4-2

  1. Sean Osman says:

    I love this game! JauntTrooper freaking rules!

    Does this have the second and third episodes? Do you have to beat the first one to play em?

    I am not at all able to even get VMS running. I should try it on Linux Mint. Would you posting a tarball of it all set up and installed work?

  2. Arkady says:

    I used to play this game while working for DEC back in 1990s. Extremely complex and elaborate, with all kinds of tough stuff. You had some starting situations which were hopeless, and there were all kinds of dangers, more or less scaling in the difficulty with your progress.

    Floor traps could be extremely nasty, plus you could fall through holes in the floor (which were just there to begin with or created by some giant ants – and, later on, there were moving holes which could slip under you and cause you to fall!) towards stronger enemies which were harder to handle.

    Second and third missions were surprisingly safer, because you started at some nice level with decent armor and weapons. The third mission had some really different style, set in some dungeon in Japan, and had all kinds of Japanese themes, like shuriken, swords etc. Time was of essence in it, unlike the first two where you could afford to just sleep for some time to restore your health.

    Overall, a real gem – just some ASCII graphics (which could be changed into various blocks on VT220 and similar terminals), pure roguelike, but an immense storyline.

  3. Lee says:

    Back in the day…while I worked at DEC and was playing Doomsday 2000… if you had a VT2xx or VT3xx terminal, the game could download “soft font” to your video terminal to make each BEM (bug-eyed monster) have a specific little shape – way cool!

    VT2xx/VT3xx soft fonts discussion:


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