Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

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Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Diamondfist » 2017-11-25 @ 04:43

I have tried looking for another instance of my problem on the forums, but haven't had any luck. I am running Ultima 8 (both CD-ROM Hard Drive Edition and Ultima Collection behave the same). It plays fine, but sometimes when I save, the game flat out crashes. I had Munt installed, and had to uninstall it from my system since changing the midiconfig setting to 0 didn't work (the default setting, and Munt was using 1), and setting ems=true and umb=false also caused it to crash regularly. I am saving in different slots.

With my current settings, (and Munt uninstalled, ems=false and umb=true) it crashes much less, but I never had this problem before. When I don't have Munt installed, or have ems=true/umb=false set, sometimes the game save is just lost, but with Munt not installed, ems=false and umb-true, it will load the game save before I tried saving in that slot. My system specs are as follows:

System specs:
Windows XP SP3
DOSBox 0.74
512 MB RAM
P4, 1.4Ghz
NVidia GeForce (BFG Tech) 6200 AGP 256 MB
HDD 80GB
Santa Cruz DLS Synth (from mixer /listmidi in DOSBox)

I have included my current DOSBox cofig file, and a screenshot of the message generated when the game crashes. I don't know what else to provide, so if anyone needs more information, and knows what is the problem, I would deeply appreciate any help, and thank you in advance (and afterwards). I appreciate the time and trouble; I've been searching everywhere and haven't found a solution. Thank you!
Attachments
dosbox-0.74.conf.txt
DOSBox config file
(10.71 KiB) Downloaded 8 times
Ultima 8 Error.JPG
Message when game crashes
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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Asaki » 2017-11-25 @ 08:57

Back in the day, in real DOS, the game would crash on me too. I don't know how to fix it, but I would always try to keep multiple save files.
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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby ripsaw8080 » 2017-11-25 @ 09:57

DOS error 2 is "file not found", so check if the gamedat\nonfixed.dat file exists. If that file is indeed missing then I guess you'll need to re-install.

Also, maybe try increasing cycles, as I read a comment that the game tends to crash on save if cycles are too low.
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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Osprey » 2017-11-25 @ 20:37

I never finished the game because, back in 1994, the game (or something) corrupted my savegame when I was near the end. I guess that I hadn't yet developed the habit of keeping multiple saves. Anyways, the game was glitchy back in the day and seemed to have savegame issues, so I wouldn't be surprised if you're just encountering bugs in the game, itself.
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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Diamondfist » 2017-11-25 @ 22:31

I've never encountered this problem before; played it in regular DOS when it was released, and in DOSBox a couple of years ago, with no change to my system since then. There are two files in the GAMEDAT folder; one NONFIXED.DAT and one NONFIXED.$$$, so the file is definitely there. I can try increasing the cycles, but my system is slow enough that it will cause performance issues. I will try it and see what happens. Thanks to all who helped.

EDIT: I played for a brief spot at 12,000 cycles, running around Stone Cove collecting Necromancer reagents, and saved, not encountering the crash, but the sound did sputter as it sometimes does after saving, without noticeable performance issues. I will have to play longer to see if the higher cycles will fix the problem. Thank you again to all that responded and offered help.
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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Stiletto » 2017-11-26 @ 03:27

Osprey wrote:I never finished the game because, back in 1994, the game (or something) corrupted my savegame when I was near the end. I guess that I hadn't yet developed the habit of keeping multiple saves. Anyways, the game was glitchy back in the day and seemed to have savegame issues, so I wouldn't be surprised if you're just encountering bugs in the game, itself.


Immediately made me think of this. It continued into Ultima IX... :D

https://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/1999/12/01

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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Osprey » 2017-11-26 @ 05:03

Stiletto wrote:Immediately made me think of this. It continued into Ultima IX... :D

Hah. Fortunately, I didn't have those issues with Ultima IX. I actually finished that game without any issue, which is funny because that game did give people a lot of issues. I guess that I was one of the lucky ones who didn't encounter many of them.
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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Asaki » 2017-11-26 @ 10:10

Osprey wrote:I never finished the game because, back in 1994, the game (or something) corrupted my savegame when I was near the end.


I had the same thing happen to me, but around four years later >_< I started a new game and used the dev cheats to warp to the final cave, and beat the game that way, so I could see the ending =P

I seem to recall seeing a fix somewhere online...some kind of hardware incompatability would cause issues, like having too much RAM installed, or something like that. I'm hoping someone else knows what I'm talking about, because I really can't remember.
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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Osprey » 2017-11-26 @ 19:52

Asaki wrote:I had the same thing happen to me, but around four years later >_< I started a new game and used the dev cheats to warp to the final cave, and beat the game that way, so I could see the ending =P

I would've loved to have done that, but I wouldn't have internet until later that year. I would've had to buy one of those massive strategy guides or see if a local BBS had a list of cheat codes, a walkthrough with them or a trainer. Even with internet, I'm not sure where I would've looked, since there was no Google. Those were the dark ages. On second thought, I probably would've looked on Usenet. What was it... comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.rpg? That sounds right.

Asaki wrote:I seem to recall seeing a fix somewhere online...some kind of hardware incompatability would cause issues, like having too much RAM installed, or something like that. I'm hoping someone else knows what I'm talking about, because I really can't remember.

Having too much RAM is an issue that I've never had. Issues arising due to underpowered, underequipped hardware, though? That's my jam.
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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Asaki » 2017-11-27 @ 13:25

Osprey wrote:Even with internet, I'm not sure where I would've looked, since there was no Google.

I didn't have Google in '97/'98, either. I know I used Search.com for a long time, I think c|net owned it? I don't remember what I used after that, but I didn't start using Google until it was too late...all of these spam blogs were Google bombing like crazy, and what you were actually looking for would never appear on the first page >_<

I probably got the cheats from GameFAQs, or I think there used to be a site that was just called Cheats.com that IGN ended up buying out.

Osprey wrote:Having too much RAM is an issue that I've never had.

Idunno, it was something along those lines.
I know there are some programs that don't get along with having too much RAM...like Windows, for instance. 98 is kind of limited to 512 megs (though there are ways around it), IIRC XP is limited to 2 or 3 gigs.

I probably had 64 megs back then (wow!).
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Re: Ultima 8 crashes periodically when saving

Postby Diamondfist » 2017-12-01 @ 01:16

Even at 12,000+ cycles, the game still crashes. The NONFIXED.DAT file is still there, and I don't know what else to do. I'm tempted to run it under DOSBox 0.73 as an experiment, though, I don't know what difference it will make. I'll just have to manage it the best I can, and thanks everyone again for your recommendations and suggestions.
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