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How did you find FS2?

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About 20 years ago I was with my dad at this local computer store (those used to exist) looking for some stupid early 2000s PC hardware when eight year old me finds this logitech force feedback joystick on the bottom shelf in one of the aisles:

The joystick itself was a piece of junk and I didn't use it much but it did however come with FreeSpace 2: Colossus. Woah. I played that 10-mission demo over and over during third grade I mean I freaking loved that game. I eventually scrounged up enough allowance to buy the real deal; a used three disc copy of FS2. I actually paid something like $40 for it. In 2003. My parents might have helped out. Anyway, that's how I found what is to this day my favorite game. A couple years later I discovered the SCP and all of the fantastic visual upgrades you could download in 2005. Back then when I played Inferno R1 I was amazed at the detail on this model:


I pick up this game again every couple years and I'm always amazed at how the modding community has continued to exist after so long. It used to be you wouldn't run into voice acting in user-made stuff but some mods have totally blown me away with what they've been able to do with a 20th century game engine.

It was a similar story with me.  My dad bought a DVD drive and it came with five sample games, one of which was the DVD edition of Descent: FreeSpace.  FreeSpace led to VolitionWatch which led to HLP.

About a year later, I decided to put my FS1 campaign, Fortunes of War, on hold to purchase and play FS2... and so far, I haven't gotten around to finishing it yet. :P

Trivial Psychic:
I was first introduced via a friend of mine who had the games, but it wasn't until I too bought a Logitech flightstick and also a copy of FS2: Colossus that I began playing it.  The stick was fun to use, but the force-feedback kept overheating and failing.  I had to replace the stick three times (under warranty) until I eventually gave up and got something else.  After playing the demo to death, I finally found and bought a copy of Descent: Freespace, which was bundled with Silent Threat.  I made several attempts to find a copy of FS2, including downloading a couple of stripped-down versions, until my friend let me copy his FS2 discs.  The rest is history.

Stickwise, I eventually bought an X52 (which I still have) until it wouldn't aim properly.  I used a few sticks here and there until I came across a Cyborg EVO at a Value Village and used that for a time.  Eventually, the trigger died, so I tried something else for a time, until I found another Cyborg EVO at Value Village.  I still have it, and it still works, but I use a Thrustmaster T16000M now.

I saw Descent: FreeSpace at Electronics Boutique when i was 30, and I knew I had to play that game.  I bought my first PC literally to play it, but by the time I got the PC, FS2 had been released and I may have actually picked it up first.   I still have my original 3-CD set, which I used to install the game after a clean install of Windows 10 a while back.  I think a search for info about FS3 led me to HLP, where I have been a long-time lurker.

I got a 10 mission demo of FS2 back in 2003 with my Wingman joystick I still use (though the vibration feature no longer works) , but never got around to getting the full thing, and eventually the Cd would no longer work on my system.  I found it and the prequel on GOG in early 2015 and tried the whole thing then, and I was impressed by both.  I discovered Knossos and the Mods in 2020 during the Covid pandemic


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