Minesweeper Games (DOS)

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This is a collection of minesweeper games for DOS. DOS refers to a group of similar operating systems with the most famous being MS-DOS (1981) by Microsoft, which was sold as PC-DOS on IBM computers. Microsoft published Windows Minesweeper in October 1990 so DOS versions are not historically important except for the fact a different DOS game called Relentless Logic inspired the creation of Minesweeper.

MS-DOS games are 16-bit programs which are either COM or EXE files. The COM files are an older format used by an early operating system called CP/M, and since MS-DOS derived from a clone of CP/M it also used the COM extension but made its COM files incompatible. The EXE files are a type (MZ) native to MS-DOS. Both can be used on Windows (1985) or OS/2 (1987) because Microsoft was involved in writing both operating systems. In fact, DOS games are fully supported on Windows until 98/ME and will work on most later 32-bit versions, while they are fully supported on all OS/2 versions and their successor eComStation (2001). If you are using a 64-bit version of Windows you need to use a DOS emulator, such as the free DOSBox. All games here have been tested using DOSBox or Windows 3.1.

Many DOS games mention what graphics are used. For example, CGA (1981) had 16 colours, EGA (1984) had 64 colours, and VGA (1987) enabled 256 colours. It seems strange now, but the original Minesweeper (1990) had a menu option to play in monochrome in case the user did not have a colour monitor.

Most of these games were found in the archive of abandoned programs at http://cd.textfiles.com.

1991 - Minefield




Download: Minefield (.EXE) 1991-02-01

Game is a 10x15 grid with 25 mines. You move by entering the co-ordinate (eg, D7). To mark a mine you add "M" (eg, D7M) and to flag you add "?" (eg, D7?). You get 1 point for each correct move, with the highest possible score being 150.
Due to the 8.3 FAT naming system the file was shared as MINEFLD. Game is written in Pascal and comes with its sourcecode.

1991 - Mine!



Richard Vannoy (OR, USA)

Download: Mine! 1.00 (.EXE) 1991-04-15

Game is 14x29 and you choose the number of mines. Highscore list saves your 15 best scores. You move using arrow keys and instead of numbers the green squares have different amounts of brown. You do not use flags.
Requires MS-DOS 2.11 or later.

1991 - Mine Field



Charles Hardy (FL, USA)
Expert Source Code, Inc

Download: Mine Field 1.15 (.EXE) 1991-09-01
Download: Mine Field 1.00 (.EXE) 1991-06-24

You win if you open all the safe squares or if you flag all the mines. There are 15 default boards (including a Castle) and you can choose the number of mines for each level. No chording or Highscores. Flagging turns a square red.
Game requires VGA graphics. Due to the 8.3 FAT naming system the file was shared as MF.EXE. Shareware $15 but now Abandonware.

Note: Game did not work in DOSBox, played on Windows 3.1.

1991 - Blowup



Download: Blowup (.COM) 1991-11-24

Game is 28x30 with 134 mines. Standard gameplay but no Highscores. Unlike most DOS versions the Timer starts at 1s.
Game is written in C and comes with its sourcecode.

1991 - Minefield



Paul Mills (IL, USA)

Download: Minefield 1.0 (.EXE) 1992-08-31

Same levels and gameplay as Minesweeper. Highscore list saves 5 scores for each level, and Custom allows 7x7 to 24x30 and 1 to 667 mines. Uses VGA graphics and a mouse.
Due to 8.3 FAT naming the file was shared as MINE.exe in MINVGA.zip.

1992 - Logic



Anonymous (USA)

Download: Logic (.EXE) 1992-12-31

Same 3 levels as Minesweeper. Custom allows 1x1 to 16x50 with 1 to 480 mines. You move with a mouse, opening squares with left clicks and flagging with right clicks. There is no chording or Highscores.
Game was shared as LOGIC.EXE in MINESWPR.ZIP and comes with its Pascal sourcecode which calls it Logic. Sourcecode is dated 1992-12-31 and game is 1993-01-14. File was uploaded to a BBS site by a friend of the programmer, who both worked for the government.

1993 - Quest for the Hoard


  • Ed Brzezinski, Canada
  • Pegasoft
  • Single Player mode limited to 6 minutes per level
  • Multiplayer mode allows up to 6 players, can set time limits per turn from 0 to 360s
  • Highscore list keeps best score per player
  • Scores based on points
  • Game opens first square automatically
  • Manual mode you need to open every square, so get more points than Auto mode which clears openings. You can drag mouse instead of clicking on all squares to save time
  • First level has 5 hidden mines and squares touching mines glow (instead of numbers), you use a spell to mark the mines as found
  • In each level are hidden gems (automatically win level), hourglasses (get more time) or other treasures
  • Many sound effects
  • Written for the Apple IIGS originally, but Pegasoft released this version for DOS and Windows 3.0
  • Shareware $15 now abandonware as per company website
  • To play you need to put all files in a folder on the C drive

1993 - Mine Find



Edward Hengin (HI, USA)

Download: Mine Find 1.0 (.EXE) 1993-01-16

Game has 12 levels (3 sizes, 4 mine densities) and uses standard gameplay except no chording. Each level has its own Highscore list for the 5 best scores. Unlike most minesweeper games you can use armor: 'Light' survives 2 mines, 'Heavy' survives 4 mines. Has flags and questionmarks but no chording.
Requires VGA graphics. Due to the 8.3 FAT naming system the file was shared as MINEFIND.EXE in MFIND10.ZIP. Shareware $15 but now Abandonware.

1993 - Mynes



Marc Palms (Germany)

Download: Mynes 1.10 (.EXE) 1993-07-07

There are 8 levels (or planets) and you must clear the safe squares and flag the mines. The game is wrapped, so each edge can touch mines on the opposite edge. The Highscore list saves the best score per level. There is no chording and instead of cascaded openings when a '0' is hit the game opens 1 square in each diagonal direction. There is a time limit (due to fuel consumption) and you can set the timer from 'Slow' to 'Ridiculous'. Points are awarded for speed and opening squares, while points are deducted for removing flags or hitting a myne. The game also comes with a DEMO mode where it will try solving the game.
This game comes with a detailed story, where planets were myned at the end of Space War IV but are now being cleared to enable mining. Shareware $5 but now Abandonware. Written in Pascal, compiled with TurboPascal 6.0 and comes with sourcecode.

Version 1.10 released 1993-07-07 but original was 1992-08-30 (which is the default date on the Highscores list).

1993 - Minefield for Everybody


Judah Warshaw (Israel)

Download: Minefield for Everybody 1.0 (.EXE) 1993-08-30

Purpose of the game was to make a version that worked on most computers. This works on any IBM-PC or variant with EGA or VGA graphics and with a keyboard or mouse. Default levels are 10x10 (6 bombs), 25x10 (25 bombs), 50x15 (100 bombs), 77x25 (or 77x43 or 77x45 depending on your monitor) with up to 1293 bombs. Allows custom games up to 40% density and with a grid limited only by your screen resolution. You must mark all mines (not clear the empty squares), and there are no Highscores or Timer.
Game was originally $5 shareware.

1993 - Minerva



Jouni Miettunen (Finland)

Download: Minerva 1.0e (.EXE) 1993-10-03 Version 1.0d released 1993-09-23
Version 1.0c released before 1993-08-06

One of the most advanced DOS minesweeper games. There are 4 board sizes with 4 density levels for each. Highscore list saves 10 best scores for all 16 combinations. Game always starts with an opening before you click. There are sound effects and you can choose 'Hint' to be told where a safe square is. You can choose from the 'Grass', 'Sea' and 'Metal' skins or use the colour editor to make your own skins. You can chord, flag and use questionmarks in the standard way but there is a new feature: chording on a number that touches that number of squares will flag all the mines. It is also possible to add hazards such as 'Rocks', a 'Detector', a 'Teleporter' and 'Jumping Mines' to make the game more difficult. VGA graphics.
Written in Borlund Turbo C. Author thanks an earlier DOS game called Blowup (1991) for inspiration to write this version.

Post in Usenet comp.archives.msdos.announce 6 OCt 1993:

"The game itself is the old simple-minded, but brain-damaged Mines game familiar from several unix, mac and Windows clones, so there's nothing special. Well, a few cool features maybe. Check it out! Needs 80286 processor, standard VGA adapter w/256k videoRAM, maximum 200k free memory. Mouse is not necessary, but recommended ie. you won't see cursor without mouse driver. Freeware. Postcard requested. Changes since 1.0d:

Bug fixes: Color Editor can be accessed only once, ESC works correctly with menus, slider thumb doesn't draw on cursor, counting safe squares works with One Flag-option, command line option to disable faster mouse, asking Hint was always enabled.

New features: Superclick has three choices (none, only step (for MS Windows compatibility), step and mark), a lot better manual, Hazards (rocks on minefield, malfunctioning mine detector, user teleporting, jumping mines), keyboard menu support.

1993 - DOSMine



David Vancina (IL, USA)

Download: DOSMine (EXE.) 1993-11-15

Start the game by typing "DOSMINE x y n" with x=columns, y=height, n=mines. You move using arrow keys, open a square by pressing 'Enter', flag with 'Spacebar' and chord with "/". No Highscores or timer. If you chord and the number of mines is wrong, you lose. It is also possible to lose on the first click.
Welcome screen says "Welcome to DOSMINE -- Minefield for the rest of us!"

Shareware for $10 but now Abandonware. Written in C++ and compiled using Turbo C++.

1994 - D-Mineur


Cyril Kohler (France)

Download: D-Mineur 1.2b (.EXE) 1994-10-01

Levels are Debutant (10x10, 10 mines), Moyen (15x15, 25 mines), Expert (?) and Custom. Highscore list saves 10 scores for each level. Normal mouse functions for opening, flagging, chording and questionmarks. Flags are white, and you must flag all mines to win.
Shareware $10 or 50FF only saves Beginner scores and limits you to 25 mines. Game is in French.

1994 - VectorMines



Vectorscope Software (CA, USA)

Download: VectorMines 1.2 (.EXE) 1994-11-20

Levels are Easy (10x10, 10 mines), Moderate (15x15, 30 mines), Hard (15x30, 80 mines) and Custom. Goal is to clear all safe squares using the arrow keys to navigate and pressing 'Enter' to open squares. You can also move in 'Continuous Mode' which opens squares automatically, and to flag a mine you press 'T'. The game does not open surrounding squares if you step in an opening. There is a Highscore list, sound effects and the cursor is animated. Vectormines lets you create your own skins and comes with a WinMine skin. Game uses VGA graphics but no Mouse. There is an 8 second delay when you load the program unless you send $3 to the programmers, but the game is now Abandonware.
Vectorscope was a group of 8 friends at university and this game was programmed by their leader, SiNGE. Version 1.00 was the original release, with 1.01 and 1.02 being small changes to spelling and graphics. Game was advertised as:

"Getting tired of Minesweeper in Windows? Well then, try VectorMines. It's a DOS based version of the popular classic mine hunt. Three levels of difficulty and wonderful VGA graphics. You can even add on different graphics! And if you're feeling up to it, even create your own graphics for VectorMines. An overly fun game."

Due to 8.3 FAT naming the file was shared as VMINES.

1995 - Bombs Away!


David Dobson (MI, USA)

Download: Bombs Away! (.EXE) 1995-01-03

Unlike most minesweeper games the goal is to flag the mines instead of opening all squares. There are 5 difficulty levels (ranging ranging from 'Amateur' to 'Euggh') for each of the 5 levels (5x9 to 25x45). Game automatically starts with opening on the 1st click. Highscore list saves 3 best times for each level. A 'Hint' feature opens a safe square but adds 10s to your time. Allows flags and chording. Effects include explosions for losing and fireworks for winning.
Game requires VGA graphics. Due to the 8.3 FAT naming system the file was shared as BOMBS.EXE. Game is written in C, sourcecode was available from author for $10.

Author announced game in Usenet rec.games.abstract 31 March 1995:

"Bombs Away! is a minesweeper-type puzzle game with several cool features which distinguish it from the average clone, such as:

  • Friendly autostart -- you always start the game from a helpful position, so you don't have to randomly guess where to begin.
  • No bogus guessing -- in Bombs Away!, you won't find yourself faced with a fifty-fifty life-or-death guess after eight minutes of play. You win by identifying all of the bombs with flags, not by opening all the squares, so you can experiment with flag placement at the end of a game instead of being forced to blindly choose squares.
  • Hint feature -- if you get stuck and need some help to continue, you have the option of asking for a hint. The computer will pick a safe square at the perimeter of your work area and uncover it for you. The catch: Each hint adds 10 seconds to your time.
  • Five difficulty levels and five playfield sizes let you pick the game that's right for your skill level and available playing time.
  • Detailed best-time list -- top three times for each difficulty-size combination are stored with names of the top players.

Bombs Away! runs under conventional memory. It requires VGA and a two-button mouse (but NOT MS Windows!)."

1996 - Minesweeper



David Faria (ON, Canada)

Download: Minesweeper 1.0 (.EXE) 1996-03-16

Game is 12x19 with 35 mines but you can choose from 20 to 99 mines. You must flag all mines to win. Highscore saves best 10 scores, and your score is 500 less your time multiplied by the number of mines. If you get over 1400 points you play a Bonus level - where bombs drop from the sky and bounce off the sides of the screen window and you must click on them before they hit your building. You get 10 points for each bomb stopped added to your score.

When you set a Highscore the game goes crazy for several minutes, congratulating you and letting you enter your name. It shows many animations such as putting a white flag on a mine and giving you a 'thumbs up', followed by game credits where Faria thanks himself more than a dozen times and provides a recipe for macaroni!

Shareware for a donation. Written using Turbo Pascal 7.00.

1997 - Bomb Squad


Tom Choate (CO, USA)
BlackOwl Software

Download: Bomb Squad 1.00 (.EXE) 1997-03-08

You win by flagging all the mines or by opening all the safe squares. You lose by clicking on a bomb, or by using 60 flags and one or more flags are wrong. Game is 16x25 with 60 bombs. You can flag mines but there are no questionmarks, chording or Highscores. You can lose on the 1st click and after every lost game it shows you where the mines were. Sound effects include a beep for every move, and a losing and winning track.
Game uses same losing music as Relentless Logic and is more like many of the games that inspired Minesweeper rather than Minesweeper (optional to open all squares, flags but no chords or questionmarks). Author must have played both, as game was tested on DOS, Windows and OS/2 before release.

Shareware for $5 but now Abandonware. Source code available for a fee. Written in Borland Turbo C++ 3.0.

2000 - Mijnen



Error Softiewear (Netherlands)

Download: Mijnen (.EXE) 2000-12-02

Game is 8x16 and you can choose 16 mines with a 74s time limit or 21 mines with a 52s time limit. Highscore list saves best 4 scores for the easy level and 11 scores for the hardest. You may also create custom games from 2x2 to 120x160 but the time limit and number of mines are automatically calculated for you. As a result the game can be larger than the game window, so you can move anywhere and use the 'Tab' key to see a map of your current location on the grid. You flag by pressing 'Spacebar', hit 'Enter' to open a square and move using the arrow keys.
Game shared as MIJNEN but game screen calls it MYNEN. Game is in Dutch.