"emacs -nw" will start Emacs in a terminal and it will behave in your terminal just like it was running in a console. Screen shot here.
(In a post I *desperately* need to re-do...)
As for "non-Emacs-specific", I don't know, but there aren't any programs that I can think of *besides* Emacs that have different flavors for terminal and X11. The Emacs that you're getting in X11 is in reality "XEmacs".