Alpha Centauri Alien Crossfire - Graphics not working properly

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Hi there! A long time ago I played Alpha Centauri and enjoyed it very much! I decided I wanted to play it again, and with the expansion! I installed Alpha Centuari Alien Crossfire, and installed the 2.0 update and also the unofficial patch. I also installed the compability patch (as I'm running on Windows 7). Now, the installation wen't fine. I started the game, no crashing and all. Just one problem, though, the introductory movies work fine, but the graphics of the game itself are very pixely with unusual colors. I tryed starting the game from terran.exe (or terranx.exe) and it still didn't show the graphics as it should be. I'm using the right resolution as I've checked that aswell.


I noticed in a post that using a netbook may need certain graphical settings to make the game run as it should. I'm using an Asus Eee Notebook with a Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator Driver for Mobile . It should run Alpha Centauri with no trouble, but the problem are the graphics and not the performance. I also tryed running it on 16bit on 32bit colors but nothing helped until now...


I hope I was clear. Please ask if you need more information!

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Also, I have the Sold Out Software version, if that is important to know. When installing, they asked if I wanted to install DirectX 6.0 but I refused as I figured I had an newer version of DirectX already. Here's a picture of the distortion I was talking about:




Hope to hear how to solve this soon!

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First, the correct order to install the updates on the SOS version is SMAX 2.0, then Windows compatibility and finally the unofficial patch. If you switched the order of the last two patches, uninstall everything and then reinstall in the order given above.


If your order was originally OK, or if reinstalling doesn't help, what is your laptop's native Windows resolution?

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Hey Petek,


Thanks for the reply! I did do the updates in the right order!


My native resolution is 1024 x 600 which is the resolution I am using right now aswell.


Perhaps I need to install DirectX again?

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Try this:


* Locate your Alpha Centauri.ini file (should be in the main SMAC folder).

* Open the file in Notepad. In the [Alpha Centauri] section add the line


video mode=800


* Delete any other video mode lines and any line with directdraw in it.

* Save the file and start the game. You may have to run Notepad as the administrator (even if you're logged in with admin rights) to save the file.


The video mode command should force the game to run at 800x600 resolution. You also may want to look at this thread, in which chuft gives tips on how to configure video cards to work around graphics issues.

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Once again thanks for your tips. Unfortunately, my Alpha Centauri.ini file is empty even though I started both SMAC and SMACX before. I tryed entering the 'video mode=800' line anyway and also DirectDraw=0 as noted in the other topic. There was no change.


Unfortunately the tips chuft gave are not useful to me.


Any other suggestions?

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Since you've started the game, you should have a populated ini file. You're running Windows 7, so it may be in some location such as


C:\Users\(user name)\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files (x86)\Firaxis Games\Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri


The path name will depend on where you installed the game, but the above is the default. Does that help?

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You truly are, my hero! It worked. The menu still has some horizontal lines, but the in-game graphics and pop-up menu's are just fine. So, thanks alot! I'll just summarize my solution down here for people who have the same problem (Windows 7):


First, type '%appdata%' in the search bar of, for example, 'My Documents'. The next step is to go to the Local directory of AppData and select Virtual Draw, then Program Files and then Firaxis Games. This is the directory where you should be:


AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files (x86)\Firaxis Games\Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri


Once your there, open your Alpha Centauri.ini file (make sure you have started the game once before you open this file) and type 'DirectDraw=0' somewhere under [Alpha Centauri]. It will look something like this:


[Alpha Centauri]





... (etc.)


That should solve your problem! For me it wasn't unnecessary to add 'video mode=800' (depends on your native resolution) but you can also try that if the first doesn't work. I also set 'ForceOldVoxelAlgorithm=1' but I do not believe that has any effect on graphics (confirmation?)


Once again, thanks Petek!



I fixed the horizontal lines aswell by forcing my laptops resolution to 1024x768. If the resolution of your laptop can't go higher then 1024x600, there are guides on the internet how to force this resolution on your machine (but watch out, there are high risks involved if this is not done properly!).

Edited by Sizzlefish

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Glad to hear that you're up and running!

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