Hover! was originally bundled with Windows 95, and puts players in the seat of a hovercraft on a 3D map. The goal is to collect three flags scattered around the map before your computer-controlled opponents do, avoiding obstacles using powerups to get an edge.
The version that Microsoft just launched (shown above)—available at hover.ie—is a modern facelift with futuristic graphics and multiple hovercraft to choose from. There’s also a private online multiplayer mode, which generates a link for up to eight players to join.
But if you really want to go back in time, just type “BAMBI” on the title screen. This takes you to a faux-Windows 95 desktop with the original version of Hover!, along with a “fun stuff” folder, just like the one that came with Windows 95. (This version has been recreated in SkyDrive.)
As ABC News points out, “Bambi” was the code name of the original game. Typing “IBMAB” while holding Ctrl-Shift in the original revealed a secret room with photos of the game’s developers.
Microsoft says Hover! works best in Internet Explorer 11, which ships with Windows 8.1 and is available in a preview for Windows 7 . It also works with touch controls. However, any modern browser should run the game just fine, and the original keyboard controls are intact: Use the arrow keys to move, and press A, S or D to deploy powerups.
Just be aware that Hover! may not live up to how you remember it. By today’s standards, it’s pretty boring.
Jared Newman has been helping folks make sense of technology for over a decade, writing for PCWorld, TechHive, and elsewhere. He also publishes two newsletters, Advisorator for straightforward tech advice and Cord Cutter Weekly for saving money on TV service.