Most us kids back in the late 90s’ were just getting acquainted with the shiny new internet. AOL, Microsoft Paint, Napstar, and don’t forget before we had memes and GIFS to use to add some flair to our AOL chats, we had soundboards. These were especially useful to an immature fifteen-year-old like myself, interrupting chatrooms with sounds of Donald Duck getting a BJ– go ahead, click and try not to laugh.
Anyway, beyond messing with people, we agonized over setting up our toys in a perfect fashion- and screensavers were a BIG DEAL. Well, as a teenager it was pretty close to the top of the list of importance- we definitely didn’t care about site security, only aesthetics. Probably why more than half of us ended up with viruses that cost our parents’ a wad of cash to fix and suspension of computer privileges’. That being said, the ONE screensaver that was LIFE came with Windows 98, and is of course, the Mystery Haunted House Screensaver.
Starting off with a couple of booming organ pipes reminiscent to a Phantom type deal, the animated mystery house screensaver is just animated enough to where it didn’t drive anyone crazy. In fact, it was mostly pretty chill compared to that of flying toasters, but the illuminated haunted ambience was thrilling for horror nerds like myself.
The occasional creaking sounds and the cackling owl perched in the Poltergeist tree in front, made up most of what the screensaver has to offer in sound bites, but if you actually sit and watch it like the psycho I am, you’ll find all kinds of wonderous little details in the Mystery House. With the Full Moon and bats moving in the background in time, the house windows would randomly light up every now and again. Timestamping at about every two-minutes , the front door would open and close, giving a peak into the house- which wasn’t much to see other than a possible second door?
The bit I always waited for on the edge of seat though, was the bearded man in the left front window looking suspicious of his surroundings with a candelabra in his hand in what looks like, the living den of the house. I’ve scrutinized over this image endlessly, and it looks like there’s a few bookcases with a bench seat in the background.
I have way too much time on my hands sometimes.
Anyway, you CAN still manage to get this screensaver on your current computer! Fair warning tho: It’s a pain in the ASS.
One way you can do it is to do is to download the MicrosoftPlus For Windows95, however you need these following files before even attempting it:
Mystery.scr Mystery.dll WILDLB32.dll WL32DLL.dll
The other way is to follow these step by step instructions by YouTube hack tech Ananay Arora– with virtually all commenters claiming great success.
If you follow any of these steps and gain some childhood nostalgia back, drop a comment below!