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Friday 6 March 2015


Abuse is a run-and-gun shooter, developed by Crack Dot Com and released in early 1996 by Origin Systems in Europe. Heavily inspires by the Predator and Alien franchises, this PC exclusive was hailed at the time for its unique and intuitive control method, but suffered poor sales leading to its incarceration.

While most PC platformers kept to the Apogee template of being not quite as good as the console counterparts (Dukes and Jazzes had nothing on Mario and Mega Man), Abuse benefited from the use of a desktop mouse that gave much more control and accuracy from other contemporary 2D shooters such as Contra or Metal Slug.

You play Nick Vrenna, a falsely accused inmate at a prison conducting medical experiments. The serum codenamed Abuse has transformed the other prisoners into dangerous beings reminiscent of the Alien's xenomorph. You must escape the prison and prevent the serum from entering the world's water supply, an apt plot-line for our first game to exit the Chamber's vault.

In an era where most games were just entering the 3D realm, many developers chose to forgo sprite-based action titles in favour of Doom clones, to varying success. A month earlier, an all-time great stormed on the market, dominating PC gaming at the time. This was Duke Nukem 3D, the first 3D iteration of the cigar-chomping womaniser, and the third game in the long-running series.

Abuse's release day, February 29th, also saw the seminal strategy game Civilization II, the mech-based Terra Nova: Strike Force Centauri and the next game in the Zork adventure series; Zork Nemesis. This strong competition filled with long-lasting classics, top tier graphics and staples in their respective genres most likely lead many people to overlook Abuse's many charms, securing it a stay in our vaults.

It is, however, a credit to the art design that allows this game to still hold up today, bearing a similar mark of polish to many of today's retro-indie titles. Its 3D contemporaries have alas suffered a different fate; large, pixelated graphics and dodgy sprite scaling in their polygonal worlds have aged them far more than their reputations suggest.

The source code has since been released by the developer which have lead to some unofficial ports to other platforms, including the Wii's Homebrew channel. It is therefore with great pleasure to inform you that innocence has been granted and the first game to be released from the Collection Chamber is Abuse!

Did this game deserve redemption? Let me know in the comments what you think.


To download the game, follow the link below. This custom installer exclusive to The Collection Chamber uses DOSBox to bring the game to modern systems. Manual included. Tested on Windows 7.
  01.07.2015 - Version 2 - Improved installer
  14.06.2016 - Version 3 - Upgraded game to version 2.0 & added missing music

File Size: 16 Mb.  Install Size: 30 Mb.  Need help? Consult the Collection Chamber FAQ


Abuse is © Crack Dot Com
Review, Cover Design and Installer created by me

Like this? Try These...

Terra Nova: Strike Force Centauri  Eye of Horus  D/Generation


  1. Thanks for the game.

    Just a couple observations:

    1. Music is unfortunately missing in your custom installer. is this a 'ripped' version?.
    2. The game executable appears to be an early release. I would suggest using the last official version (2.0f) for the sake of completeness.

    Thanks again.

  2. The version I believe I used was the freeware release which came out several years ago. I'll take a look about including any updates. There's also some user levels that I think would be a nice addition. I'm very behind with my updates at the moment (that's life), but I'll get round to it.
    Thanks for your feedback. It's much appreciated.

  3. VERSION 3
    - Upgraded the game to Abuse v.2.0f
    - Added missing music

  4. I played so much Abuse back in the day. Absolutely BRUTAL levels in difficulty when you get up there, some RNG on rocket paths, but it never felt 'unfair'. Like the toolkit was so limited yet versatile the only reason you're not overcoming that hell room full of fire mutants and rocket turrets is YOU.

  5. Hello, I tried to play this today, is there any way to change the arrow keys to wasd in this version?

    1. Not in the game itself, but you can using the DOSBox mapper. I've added a file in the download link that'll to this ("mapper-0.74.map"). Just pop it in the install directory and you're good to go. Alternatively press Ctrl-F1 while playing to edit your own.

    2. its great playing the MS-DOS version with modern controls setup and music, since i think the music was only in the CD version. however i did encounter a problem (i think it's a bug), when i save game and load from the save file (no matter which), it messed up the music, looping the same track even after i complete the level and moving on to the next, which i know is not the correct track since i also played the windows/open source version. also when i start the game after the openning intro and go straight to loading from the save file, it will continue openning theme track instead of it's proper track, and will keep looping unless you start from the beginning. i was forced to mute the music, cause it got annoying after a while. i hope this can be fixed.

  6. The plot from 1.0 version was BEST, the prison plot sucks