VOGONS

Common searches


First post, by wokacam

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie

This game has a DVD version with some better video quality in MPEG-2 format, but they are not running on Windows 11 (actually, none windows after Win98).
https://www.pcgamingwiki.com/wiki/The_X-Files_Game

the game is not unplayable because by not running MPEG-2 it apparently plays another video of worse quality in its place, but the person cannot experience the high quality of the DVD version.
The 'read me' of the game says: "The MPEG2 player must include a Windows MCI driver"
this MCI support seems to be ended after Windows98.

When searching solutions i saw that this case is similar to the other games like "Star Trek: Starfleet Academy" and "Wing Commander 4" that also has a DVD version with MPEG-2 better videos,
Fortunately, these 2 games have a Patch:
http://www.si-gamer.net/gulikoza/dxmci.html
which converts the MCI commands to the current way that Windows works, but it seems that this tool needs to be done game by game, so "X-Files" must not be supported, and the patch author must have been off the internet for over 10 years to ask for an update to this game.

So it would be great if a fix was added for this "MCI Driver" case, so that X-Files becomes playable too, perhaps based on this code for other games that are already ready.

To test, the DVD version can be downloaded at REMOVED
in DVD folder you can see the "vob" folder with the best quality videos, that include the Opening.

Last edited by DosFreak on 2024-05-24, 21:51. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 1 of 11, by BEEN_Nath_58

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

MCI is supported after Windows 98, but probably not in the way the game uses MCI. This should be feasible, many other games had such problems and were later fixed, but I am not the person to fix it 🙁

previously known as Discrete_BOB_058

Reply 4 of 11, by Falcosoft

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

As others have said MCI (Media Control Interface) is still supported even on Win 11.
For audio MCI uses ACM (Audio Compression Manager) and for video VfW (Video for Windows) codecs.
But the installed default codecs are still the old ones so besides PCM audio and uncompressed AVI files MCI by default only supports ancient codecs (MS RLE, MS Video 1, Intel Indeo and such).
So you will need a proper Mpeg2/Dolby Digital (AC-3) audio codec and Mpeg2 video codec to be able to play Mpeg2 encoded videos through MCI.
So the problem on newer systems is not that MCI is missing, but the game most likely wants to install such audio/video codec(s) that are not compatible with newer Windows versions anymore.

As far as I remember ffdshow supported Mpeg2 audio/video and besides Directshow filters it also installed ACM/VfW codecs but I only used it on WinXP:
https://sourceforge.net/projects/ffdshow-tryout/

Website, Facebook, Youtube
Falcosoft Soundfont Midi Player + Munt VSTi + BassMidi VSTi
VST Midi Driver Midi Mapper

Reply 5 of 11, by BEEN_Nath_58

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t
Falcosoft wrote on 2024-05-24, 07:39:
As others have said MCI (Media Control Interface) is still supported even on Win 11. For audio MCI uses ACM (Audio Compression M […]
Show full quote

As others have said MCI (Media Control Interface) is still supported even on Win 11.
For audio MCI uses ACM (Audio Compression Manager) and for video VfW (Video for Windows) codecs.
But the installed default codecs are still the old ones so besides PCM audio and uncompressed AVI files MCI by default only supports ancient codecs (MS RLE, MS Video 1, Intel Indeo and such).
So you will need a proper Mpeg2/Dolby Digital (AC-3) audio codec and Mpeg2 video codec to be able to play Mpeg2 encoded videos through MCI.
So the problem on newer systems is not that MCI is missing, but the game most likely wants to install such audio/video codec(s) that are not compatible with newer Windows versions anymore.

As far as I remember ffdshow supported Mpeg2 audio/video and besides Directshow filters it also installed ACM/VfW codecs but I only used it on WinXP:
https://sourceforge.net/projects/ffdshow-tryout/

I have LAV installed but still the game proceeds onto the QuickTime "low quality" videos. I got my Win98 machine and the game initially installs DxMedia with some app "Cinecore?"

previously known as Discrete_BOB_058

Reply 6 of 11, by Falcosoft

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t
BEEN_Nath_58 wrote on 2024-05-24, 08:03:
Falcosoft wrote on 2024-05-24, 07:39:
As others have said MCI (Media Control Interface) is still supported even on Win 11. For audio MCI uses ACM (Audio Compression M […]
Show full quote

As others have said MCI (Media Control Interface) is still supported even on Win 11.
For audio MCI uses ACM (Audio Compression Manager) and for video VfW (Video for Windows) codecs.
But the installed default codecs are still the old ones so besides PCM audio and uncompressed AVI files MCI by default only supports ancient codecs (MS RLE, MS Video 1, Intel Indeo and such).
So you will need a proper Mpeg2/Dolby Digital (AC-3) audio codec and Mpeg2 video codec to be able to play Mpeg2 encoded videos through MCI.
So the problem on newer systems is not that MCI is missing, but the game most likely wants to install such audio/video codec(s) that are not compatible with newer Windows versions anymore.

As far as I remember ffdshow supported Mpeg2 audio/video and besides Directshow filters it also installed ACM/VfW codecs but I only used it on WinXP and Win7:
https://sourceforge.net/projects/ffdshow-tryout/

I have LAV installed but still the game proceeds onto the QuickTime "low quality" videos. I got my Win98 machine and the game initially installs DxMedia with some app "Cinecore?"

LAV filters are strictly Directshow filters. Contrary to ffdshow LAV does not provide compatible ACM/VfW codecs that can be used through MCI.
For testing you can use VirtualDub that by default uses only VfW codecs for video. So you can check with it what kind of video codecs can be seen by MCI applications (Video-> Compression).

vdub.png
Filename
vdub.png
File size
54.94 KiB
Views
526 views
File license
Public domain

BTW, ffdshow seems to be working perfectly on Win7. I cannot test in on Win 11.

PS: I do not know/own the game so I do not know if it really uses MCI for playback or not. I took OP's description for granted.

Last edited by Falcosoft on 2024-05-24, 08:40. Edited 1 time in total.

Website, Facebook, Youtube
Falcosoft Soundfont Midi Player + Munt VSTi + BassMidi VSTi
VST Midi Driver Midi Mapper

Reply 7 of 11, by BEEN_Nath_58

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t
Falcosoft wrote on 2024-05-24, 08:17:
LAV filters are strictly Directshow filters. Contrary to ffdshow LAV does not provide compatible ACM/VfW codecs that can be used […]
Show full quote
BEEN_Nath_58 wrote on 2024-05-24, 08:03:
Falcosoft wrote on 2024-05-24, 07:39:
As others have said MCI (Media Control Interface) is still supported even on Win 11. For audio MCI uses ACM (Audio Compression M […]
Show full quote

As others have said MCI (Media Control Interface) is still supported even on Win 11.
For audio MCI uses ACM (Audio Compression Manager) and for video VfW (Video for Windows) codecs.
But the installed default codecs are still the old ones so besides PCM audio and uncompressed AVI files MCI by default only supports ancient codecs (MS RLE, MS Video 1, Intel Indeo and such).
So you will need a proper Mpeg2/Dolby Digital (AC-3) audio codec and Mpeg2 video codec to be able to play Mpeg2 encoded videos through MCI.
So the problem on newer systems is not that MCI is missing, but the game most likely wants to install such audio/video codec(s) that are not compatible with newer Windows versions anymore.

As far as I remember ffdshow supported Mpeg2 audio/video and besides Directshow filters it also installed ACM/VfW codecs but I only used it on WinXP and Win7:
https://sourceforge.net/projects/ffdshow-tryout/

I have LAV installed but still the game proceeds onto the QuickTime "low quality" videos. I got my Win98 machine and the game initially installs DxMedia with some app "Cinecore?"

LAV filters are strictly Directshow filters. Contrary to ffdshow LAV does not provide compatible ACM/VfW codecs that can be used through MCI.
For testing you can use VirtualDub that by default uses only VfW codecs for video. So you can check with it what kind of video codecs can be seen by MCI applications (Video-> Compression).
vdub.png
BTW, ffdshow seems to be working perfectly on Win7. I cannot test in on Win 11.

Do you mean ffdshow can correctly play the VOB MPEG2 videos on Windows 7? If so, then the problem is probably fixed.

I can't test on Win11 either, older QTs error out at error -2095 and latest QT crashes the game.

previously known as Discrete_BOB_058

Reply 8 of 11, by BEEN_Nath_58

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t
Falcosoft wrote on 2024-05-24, 08:17:
LAV filters are strictly Directshow filters. Contrary to ffdshow LAV does not provide compatible ACM/VfW codecs that can be used […]
Show full quote
BEEN_Nath_58 wrote on 2024-05-24, 08:03:
Falcosoft wrote on 2024-05-24, 07:39:
As others have said MCI (Media Control Interface) is still supported even on Win 11. For audio MCI uses ACM (Audio Compression M […]
Show full quote

As others have said MCI (Media Control Interface) is still supported even on Win 11.
For audio MCI uses ACM (Audio Compression Manager) and for video VfW (Video for Windows) codecs.
But the installed default codecs are still the old ones so besides PCM audio and uncompressed AVI files MCI by default only supports ancient codecs (MS RLE, MS Video 1, Intel Indeo and such).
So you will need a proper Mpeg2/Dolby Digital (AC-3) audio codec and Mpeg2 video codec to be able to play Mpeg2 encoded videos through MCI.
So the problem on newer systems is not that MCI is missing, but the game most likely wants to install such audio/video codec(s) that are not compatible with newer Windows versions anymore.

As far as I remember ffdshow supported Mpeg2 audio/video and besides Directshow filters it also installed ACM/VfW codecs but I only used it on WinXP and Win7:
https://sourceforge.net/projects/ffdshow-tryout/

I have LAV installed but still the game proceeds onto the QuickTime "low quality" videos. I got my Win98 machine and the game initially installs DxMedia with some app "Cinecore?"

LAV filters are strictly Directshow filters. Contrary to ffdshow LAV does not provide compatible ACM/VfW codecs that can be used through MCI.
For testing you can use VirtualDub that by default uses only VfW codecs for video. So you can check with it what kind of video codecs can be seen by MCI applications (Video-> Compression).
vdub.png
BTW, ffdshow seems to be working perfectly on Win7. I cannot test in on Win 11.

PS: I do not know/own the game so I do not know if it really uses MCI for playback or not. I took OP's description for granted.

The videos are MPEG-2, the game seems to install Divicore for files related to MCI and qidvdf.ax as well as DirectShow and Cinemaster libraries.

In MPC, the video properties:

Video: MPEG2 Video 720x480 (4:3) 29.97fps 4500kbps [V: mpeg2 main, yuv420p, 720x480, 4500 kb/s]
Audio: LPCM 48000Hz stereo 1536kbps [A: pcm_dvd, 48000 Hz, 2 channels, s16, 1536 kb/s]

previously known as Discrete_BOB_058

Reply 9 of 11, by Falcosoft

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t
BEEN_Nath_58 wrote on 2024-05-24, 11:37:
The videos are MPEG-2, the game seems to install Divicore for files related to MCI and qidvdf.ax as well as DirectShow and Cinem […]
Show full quote
Falcosoft wrote on 2024-05-24, 08:17:
LAV filters are strictly Directshow filters. Contrary to ffdshow LAV does not provide compatible ACM/VfW codecs that can be used […]
Show full quote
BEEN_Nath_58 wrote on 2024-05-24, 08:03:

I have LAV installed but still the game proceeds onto the QuickTime "low quality" videos. I got my Win98 machine and the game initially installs DxMedia with some app "Cinecore?"

LAV filters are strictly Directshow filters. Contrary to ffdshow LAV does not provide compatible ACM/VfW codecs that can be used through MCI.
For testing you can use VirtualDub that by default uses only VfW codecs for video. So you can check with it what kind of video codecs can be seen by MCI applications (Video-> Compression).
vdub.png
BTW, ffdshow seems to be working perfectly on Win7. I cannot test in on Win 11.

PS: I do not know/own the game so I do not know if it really uses MCI for playback or not. I took OP's description for granted.

The videos are MPEG-2, the game seems to install Divicore for files related to MCI and qidvdf.ax as well as DirectShow and Cinemaster libraries.

In MPC, the video properties:

Video: MPEG2 Video 720x480 (4:3) 29.97fps 4500kbps [V: mpeg2 main, yuv420p, 720x480, 4500 kb/s]
Audio: LPCM 48000Hz stereo 1536kbps [A: pcm_dvd, 48000 Hz, 2 channels, s16, 1536 kb/s]

LPCM means uncompressed wave audio so no special audio codec is required for playback. Only Mpeg2 video codec is needed. It would be good to know if the game really used MCI for playback or not.
BTW, here is a test MCI player that can help to determine if a video can be played back with MCI or not. I suspect that if the player has a problem then other MCI based programs (including the game if it really uses MCI) also must have problems with playback.

Filename
mciplayer.zip
File size
142.02 KiB
Downloads
9 downloads
File license
Public domain

Website, Facebook, Youtube
Falcosoft Soundfont Midi Player + Munt VSTi + BassMidi VSTi
VST Midi Driver Midi Mapper

Reply 10 of 11, by BEEN_Nath_58

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t
Falcosoft wrote on 2024-05-24, 14:57:
LPCM means uncompressed wave audio so no special audio codec is required for playback. Only Mpeg2 video codec is needed. It woul […]
Show full quote
BEEN_Nath_58 wrote on 2024-05-24, 11:37:
The videos are MPEG-2, the game seems to install Divicore for files related to MCI and qidvdf.ax as well as DirectShow and Cinem […]
Show full quote
Falcosoft wrote on 2024-05-24, 08:17:
LAV filters are strictly Directshow filters. Contrary to ffdshow LAV does not provide compatible ACM/VfW codecs that can be used […]
Show full quote

LAV filters are strictly Directshow filters. Contrary to ffdshow LAV does not provide compatible ACM/VfW codecs that can be used through MCI.
For testing you can use VirtualDub that by default uses only VfW codecs for video. So you can check with it what kind of video codecs can be seen by MCI applications (Video-> Compression).
vdub.png
BTW, ffdshow seems to be working perfectly on Win7. I cannot test in on Win 11.

PS: I do not know/own the game so I do not know if it really uses MCI for playback or not. I took OP's description for granted.

The videos are MPEG-2, the game seems to install Divicore for files related to MCI and qidvdf.ax as well as DirectShow and Cinemaster libraries.

In MPC, the video properties:

Video: MPEG2 Video 720x480 (4:3) 29.97fps 4500kbps [V: mpeg2 main, yuv420p, 720x480, 4500 kb/s]
Audio: LPCM 48000Hz stereo 1536kbps [A: pcm_dvd, 48000 Hz, 2 channels, s16, 1536 kb/s]

LPCM means uncompressed wave audio so no special audio codec is required for playback. Only Mpeg2 video codec is needed. It would be good to know if the game really used MCI for playback or not.
BTW, here is a test MCI player that can help to determine if a video can be played back with MCI or not. I suspect that if the player has a problem then other MCI based programs (including the game if it really uses MCI) also must have problems with playback.
mciplayer.zip

The problem has been fixed, it uses MCI.
https://github.com/FunkyFr3sh/cnc-ddraw/issues/315

Without the necessary registry addition in "MCI Extensions" folder, I would get an mciCommanA::EXTENSION_NOT_FOUND error. With the addition of the extension and using the X Codec Pack, the game uses the VOB MPEG2 files through DirectDraw.

previously known as Discrete_BOB_058

Reply 11 of 11, by feda

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member

Sorry to burst people's bubble, but most of the videos in the DVD version are of identical quality to the CD release, so it's not worth the hassle.
Sound quality is also the same. You can compare the file sizes in the XV and XS folders.
The vob folder with the "high quality" videos contains only 12 files out of over 1000 videos that the game uses.
The vob stuff is mostly small clips, death videos, as well as the intro and ending. But the difference in quality is barely noticeable IMO. At least it's a little bit better unlike those awful Starfleet DVD vids 🤣.
The DVD size is ~8 gigs due to the French version being included.

The only advantage of the DVD version is smoother loading times and no swapping if you for some reason insist on playing from a physical disc instead of mounting an iso.
But the CD version has a full hard drive install option.

However it's nice to see that both releases are now playable in W10/11.
Now if someone could hack the game to display in non-stretched widescreen, that would be sweet.