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Problematic Windows games list

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First post, by HunterZ

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Hello everyone. I was thinking it might be helpful to maintain a list of older Windows games that don't run well on modern Windows. Post any info you have about problematic games and/or any possible workarounds or existing discussions on this forum, and I'll add it to the list.

Windows 10:

Windows 7:

  • Final Fantasy VII - fixed by patches/Steam
  • MechWarrior 3 - works on Windows 10 w/just 1.2 patch - Win 7 workarounds: Re: Problematic games list
  • Need for Speed Special Edition - setup fails due to memory compatibility issue
  • Vietcong (2003)
  • Virtual Pool Hall - refuses to recognize CD
  • Wings over Vietnam (2004)
Last edited by DosFreak on 2020-06-08, 02:37. Edited 25 times in total.

Reply 1 of 121, by DracoNihil

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Shogo: MAD and Blood 2 barely function properly even under Wine. But stability with those games can be achieved using a "undocumented" console command (I think it was like "max_fps" or "maxfps") to internally limit the execution rate to 60 FPS, and only using the "default" sound system.

Even on Windows 9x machines just changing the sound system to the other ones provided by the latest patches caused way more crashes than just leaving it to the stock default one!

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Reply 2 of 121, by ZellSF

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Fairly sure I've heard of people running all of those on Windows 10 without problems.

If you're listing games some people can't get running on modern systems then you can basically list every Windows game in existence.

You also haven't defined "Runs well" or how the list regards emulators and virtualization.

Reply 3 of 121, by HunterZ

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ZellSF wrote on 2020-01-19, 14:02:

Fairly sure I've heard of people running all of those on Windows 10 without problems.

If you're listing games some people can't get running on modern systems then you can basically list every Windows game in existence.

You also haven't defined "Runs well" or how the list regards emulators and virtualization.

Are we finally at a point where emulators are a viable option for running Win9x Direct3D/OpenGL games at 60FPS without issues? If so, what are people using to achieve this?

Reply 4 of 121, by ZellSF

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HunterZ wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:20:
ZellSF wrote on 2020-01-19, 14:02:

Fairly sure I've heard of people running all of those on Windows 10 without problems.

If you're listing games some people can't get running on modern systems then you can basically list every Windows game in existence.

You also haven't defined "Runs well" or how the list regards emulators and virtualization.

Are we finally at a point where emulators are a viable option for running Win9x Direct3D/OpenGL games at 60FPS without issues? If so, what are people using to achieve this?

No, emulators / virtualization is (mainly) used for 2D games.

Reply 8 of 121, by HunterZ

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ZellSF wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:28:
HunterZ wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:20:
ZellSF wrote on 2020-01-19, 14:02:

Fairly sure I've heard of people running all of those on Windows 10 without problems.

If you're listing games some people can't get running on modern systems then you can basically list every Windows game in existence.

You also haven't defined "Runs well" or how the list regards emulators and virtualization.

Are we finally at a point where emulators are a viable option for running Win9x Direct3D/OpenGL games at 60FPS without issues? If so, what are people using to achieve this?

No, emulators / virtualization is (mainly) used for 2D games.

Not going to dwell on this line of discussion too much then, as there are a ton of early hardware-accelerated 3D games in particular that universally don't do well on modern Windows due to weird stuff they did and/or loss of backward compatibility in the OS or GPU drivers.

Reply 10 of 121, by ZellSF

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Living wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:43:

Need for speed 2 / SE, it takes several steps to get it work

  1. Run fan-made installer
  2. Install the Need For Speed II - Second Edition Patch

I'm not seeing the "several" steps. Even if you hate the fan patch I wouldn't call it problematic:

  1. Run fan-made installer
  2. Get a dsound.dll that works
  3. Install a glide wrapper (or ddraw wrapper if you want software rendering), which most PCs used for playing retro games will have installed already.
HunterZ wrote on 2020-01-19, 17:08:
ZellSF wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:28:
HunterZ wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:20:

Are we finally at a point where emulators are a viable option for running Win9x Direct3D/OpenGL games at 60FPS without issues? If so, what are people using to achieve this?

No, emulators / virtualization is (mainly) used for 2D games.

Not going to dwell on this line of discussion too much then, as there are a ton of early hardware-accelerated 3D games in particular that universally don't do well on modern Windows due to weird stuff they did and/or loss of backward compatibility in the OS or GPU drivers.

You never said no 2D games. See why I'm complaining that the criteria for your list is too vague?

At any rate, most (all I've run into actually) 3D games there are ways to get working on a modern setup. 2D games are actually more problematic now (though for those you can always rely on emulation/virtualization)

Reply 11 of 121, by HunterZ

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MAZter wrote on 2020-01-19, 17:09:
HunterZ wrote on 2020-01-19, 17:05:

This is listed everywhere as a DOS game. Have you tried using DOSBox?

No, I tried using different Dos machines.

This thread is about old Windows games that don't run well or at all on modern Windows machines.

DOSBox or other emulators/simulators/VMs provide feasible solutions for running most DOS games on modern Windows.

ZellSF wrote on 2020-01-19, 20:16:
I'm not seeing the "several" steps. Even if you hate the fan patch I wouldn't call it problematic: […]
Show full quote
Living wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:43:

Need for speed 2 / SE, it takes several steps to get it work

  1. Run fan-made installer
  2. Install the Need For Speed II - Second Edition Patch

I'm not seeing the "several" steps. Even if you hate the fan patch I wouldn't call it problematic:

  1. Run fan-made installer
  2. Get a dsound.dll that works
  3. Install a glide wrapper (or ddraw wrapper if you want software rendering), which most PCs used for playing retro games will have installed already.
HunterZ wrote on 2020-01-19, 17:08:
ZellSF wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:28:

No, emulators / virtualization is (mainly) used for 2D games.

Not going to dwell on this line of discussion too much then, as there are a ton of early hardware-accelerated 3D games in particular that universally don't do well on modern Windows due to weird stuff they did and/or loss of backward compatibility in the OS or GPU drivers.

You never said no 2D games. See why I'm complaining that the criteria for your list is too vague?

At any rate, most (all I've run into actually) 3D games there are ways to get working on a modern setup. 2D games are actually more problematic now (though for those you can always rely on emulation/virtualization)

Cool. Come over to my house and get Shogo working reliably on my Windows 10 gaming laptop!

Reply 12 of 121, by liqmat

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I play Mechwarrior 3 extensively on my main gaming rig which is running Windows 7 64. It goes like this:

1.) Install game
2.) Install 1.2 patch
3.) Frame limit to 30FPS (I use EVGA's PrecisionX 16)
4.) Carry on

The Pirate's Moon expansion pack works great as well.

- There is the occasional crash on certain missions, but that was normal behavior even back at release.

Last edited by liqmat on 2020-05-09, 14:47. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 13 of 121, by Living

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ZellSF wrote on 2020-01-19, 20:16:
I'm not seeing the "several" steps. Even if you hate the fan patch I wouldn't call it problematic: […]
Show full quote
Living wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:43:

Need for speed 2 / SE, it takes several steps to get it work

  1. Run fan-made installer
  2. Install the Need For Speed II - Second Edition Patch

I'm not seeing the "several" steps. Even if you hate the fan patch I wouldn't call it problematic:

  1. Run fan-made installer
  2. Get a dsound.dll that works
  3. Install a glide wrapper (or ddraw wrapper if you want software rendering), which most PCs used for playing retro games will have installed already.

i know what im talking about, i DID try that and it doesn't work with every PC

recently i had a lan party at my house and out of 8 PC/Notebooks it only ran in 3 with the method you suggested. For the rest i had to do a workaround with the Microsoft Application Compatibility Toolkit

Reply 14 of 121, by ZellSF

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Living wrote on 2020-01-19, 21:19:
ZellSF wrote on 2020-01-19, 20:16:
I'm not seeing the "several" steps. Even if you hate the fan patch I wouldn't call it problematic: […]
Show full quote
Living wrote on 2020-01-19, 16:43:

Need for speed 2 / SE, it takes several steps to get it work

  1. Run fan-made installer
  2. Install the Need For Speed II - Second Edition Patch

I'm not seeing the "several" steps. Even if you hate the fan patch I wouldn't call it problematic:

  1. Run fan-made installer
  2. Get a dsound.dll that works
  3. Install a glide wrapper (or ddraw wrapper if you want software rendering), which most PCs used for playing retro games will have installed already.

i know what im talking about, i DID try that and it doesn't work with every PC

recently i had a lan party at my house and out of 8 PC/Notebooks it only ran in 3 with the method you suggested. For the rest i had to do a workaround with the Microsoft Compatibility Toolkit

I suggested two methods, the fan patch definitely negates the need for any compatibility toolkit fixes. The fan-made installer should too.

Regardless, if it worked for 3 and not the others, the problem isn't Need for Speed II SE being hard to run on modern computers, the problem is there being something weird with the other PCs.

If OP wants to go with that criteria, might as well start listing every Windows game released.

Reply 15 of 121, by collector

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Do you want games that have issues on modern Windows even though they have been added to ScummVM?

The Sierra Help Pages -- New Sierra Game Installers -- Sierra Game Patches -- New Non-Sierra Game Installers

Reply 17 of 121, by HunterZ

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collector wrote on 2020-01-19, 21:49:

Do you want games that have issues on modern Windows even though they have been added to ScummVM?

Yes, because it's good to capture as a workaround.

collector wrote on 2020-01-19, 21:54:

Sanitarium
Outlaws

Are these supported by ScummVM?

Reply 18 of 121, by ZellSF

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collector wrote on 2020-01-19, 21:49:

Do you want games that have issues on modern Windows even though they have been added to ScummVM?

Are there any 3D games in ScummVM? From what I gather he doesn't want to talk about 2D games.

collector wrote on 2020-01-19, 21:54:

Sanitarium
Outlaws

Outlaws is a bit tricky to get running properly (mode switches taking too long, needs to set up ddraw wrapper for menus that support windowed mode + wrapper for whatever game render you want that can run windowed, dgVoodoo is a nice solution for both menus and D3D render), but once you do it runs pretty well.

I think Sanitarium just needs any ddraw wrapper? I don't recall doing anything special last time I played that game. Native ddraw causes lots of crashes, though PC Gaming Wiki seems to attribute that to multiple cores :/

Reply 19 of 121, by collector

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HunterZ wrote on 2020-01-19, 21:57:
collector wrote on 2020-01-19, 21:49:

Do you want games that have issues on modern Windows even though they have been added to ScummVM?

Yes, because it's good to capture as a workaround.

That is what I was thinking was your purpose. Such a list interests me as well. In that case Blade Runner. I created a shim to address its graphical problems on modern Windows. It is in my Blade Runner installer. Eugene of the SVM team contacted me about it. Don't know if they used that information or not.

HunterZ wrote on 2020-01-19, 21:57:
collector wrote on 2020-01-19, 21:54:

Sanitarium
Outlaws

Are these supported by ScummVM?

Neither. There has been some work on Sanitarium, but it is still not supported. Outlaws may be supported by ResidualVM, but without looking I do not know.

A few more:

Titanic: Adventure Out of Time
Diskworld Noir
Black Dahlia
AMBER: Journeys Beyond

And doesn't the Journeyman Project have issues?

The Sierra Help Pages -- New Sierra Game Installers -- Sierra Game Patches -- New Non-Sierra Game Installers