Microsoft Entertainment Pack

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Microsoft Entertainment Pack
Developer(s) Microsoft
Publisher(s) Microsoft Game Studios
Distributor(s) Microsoft
Designer(s) Robert Andrews
Series Entertainment Pack
Platform(s) Windows 3.x, Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows XP
Release 1989
Mode(s) Single-player

The original Windows Entertainment Pack (WEP) is a collection of 16-bit casual computer games for Windows. These games were somewhat unusual for the time, in that they would not run under MS-DOS. Many of the games were later released in the Best of Microsoft Entertainment Pack. There were four Entertainment Packs in the original series. All games being 16-bit run on modern 32-bit versions of Windows but not on 64-bit Windows. Support for all versions of Microsoft Entertainment Pack ended on January 31, 2003.

FreeCell, Minesweeper, Taipei and WinChess from this pack were later bundled with Windows. The original chess game was WinChess[1] and with Taipei was written by David Norris; in later versions of Windows this was superseded by Chess Titans.

Origins and development[edit]

Microsoft Entertainment Pack was designed by the company's “Entry Business” team, whose job was to make Windows more appealing to homes and small businesses. Ex-Microsoft product manager Bruce Ryan said the company did this because it "was concerned that the operating system’s high hardware requirements meant that people would only see it as a tool for large enterprises".[2] The project has "almost no budget", and no major video game publishers got involved because they doubted Windows' legitimacy as a gaming platform; therefore Ryan compiled a series of games that Windows employees had been working on in their spare time.[3]


Microsoft advertised Entertainment Packs for casual gaming on office computers. The boxes had slogans like "No more boring coffee breaks" and "Only a few minutes between meetings? Get in a quick game of Klotski". The marketing succeeded; Computer Gaming World in 1992 described the series as "the Gorillas of the Gaming Lite Jungle", with more than 500,000 copies sold.[4]

List of games[edit]

The original Microsoft Windows Entertainment Pack titles include:

Microsoft Entertainment Pack 1[edit]

Microsoft Entertainment Pack 2[edit]

Microsoft Entertainment Pack 3[edit]

Microsoft Entertainment Pack 4[edit]


For much of the early 1990s, the Gamesampler, a subset of the Entertainment Pack small enough to fit on a single high-density disk, was shipped as a free eleventh disk added to a ten-pack of Verbatim blank 3.5" microfloppy diskettes. Games on the sampler included Jezzball, Rodent's Revenge, Tetris, and Skifree. A "Best of" disk of several of the games was also available at times as a mail-in premium from Kellogg's cereals.

32-bit versions[edit]

In the copies of Windows NT 4.0 and Windows 2000 source code which leaked back in 2004, there are 32-bit versions of Cruel, Golf, Pegged, Reversi, Snake (Rattler Race), Taipei and TicTactics.[5] However, FreeCell and Minesweeper have had official 32-bit versions bundled even with early versions of Windows NT. The original game developers of some of the games such as SkiFree,[6] TriPeaks,[7] WordZap[8] now offer 32-bit versions. Third party developers have also created 32-bit freeware clones of Klotski,[9] TetraVex[10] Rodent's Revenge,[11] and Tetris.[12]

Port to the Game Boy Color[edit]

A multicart containing seven games was released for the Game Boy Color as The Best Of Entertainment Pack. Four of the games on the multi-cart were ported from Best of Microsoft Entertainment Pack, while the remaining three were ported from other Microsoft Entertainment Pack compilations.

Reception and legacy[edit]

Digital Trends noted, "For many, the simple but enjoyable games found in the Entertainment Pack provided a first taste of early PC gaming and served as a gateway to more complex classics."[13] PC World described the pack as having "standout time-wasters".[14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Included in Best of Microsoft Entertainment Pack
  2. ^ a b c d Bundled in some later versions of Windows


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Welcome To Gaming Lite". Computer Gaming World. September 1992. p. 74. Retrieved 3 July 2014. 
  5. ^ "We Are Morons: a quick look at the Win2k source". Archived from the original on 2015-01-01. Retrieved January 6, 2012. [dead link]
  6. ^ Chris (February 10, 2010). "The most officialest SkiFree homepage". Retrieved January 6, 2012. 
  7. ^ "TriPeaks Homepage". Retrieved January 6, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Classic WordZap". Retrieved January 6, 2012. 
  9. ^ "Klotski homepage". Retrieved January 6, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Tetravex Game in Delphi". Retrieved January 6, 2012. 
  11. ^ "Rodent's Revenge 2000". August 22, 2007. Archived from the original on August 22, 2007. Retrieved January 6, 2012. 
  12. ^ "CrystalOffice Games". Retrieved January 6, 2012. 
  13. ^
  14. ^

External links[edit]