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I desperately want to play Civilization 3 on my linux box. Actually, I dual-boot linux and windows, but I'd really like to be able to play it in linux. Also, it doesn't work in windows right now due to some weird problem with my installation, but I'm not here to talk about that. I'm getting pretty far, and the game is playable for me now in linux, but it has some annoying problems. For those of you who are trying to run the game also and haven't gotten as far as me, let me go through the steps I've been through so far:
First, my setup: I have two versions of wine, wine-20050930, and cvscedega from October 11th, 2005 (downloaded and compiled from linux-gamers' cvscedega-head script). I have Civilization 3 with both expansions, and the latest patches and no-CD cracks have been applied to all 3 games (vanilla, and both expansions). My computer is pretty decent, and the game has no problems with speed in Windows (my system is an Athlon XP some 1.4ish Ghz, Geforce GT 6600, 512 MB RAM)
I never tried the installer for any of the games, I simply copied the folder from my windows drive to my linux system, and began from there. First I changed permissions on all the files under my civ3 folder to 777, and owned by my user. This is because NTFS is read-only, and so all the files originally came over as read-only.
Running Civilization 3 with cvscedega gives me an exception error (in the GUI - it even asks me in a windows-style box if I want to debug or not), and even doing the registry additions to cedega's registry that I talked about below doesn't affect it at all. So, I stuck with wine. If anyone knows what I might do to use cvscedega for Civ3 (if it runs it better), please do tell!
I ran Civilization 3 with regular wine, but was immediately given a messagebox that said "no civilization III installation detected". I figured this was a registry problem, and it was. By setting winedebug to "export WINEDEBUG=trace+reg", I was able to find out the missing string was called "CD_Path" under HKLM\Software\Infogrames Interactive\Civilization III. I put this in (as "D:"), and it got past this. I later added more missing keys, in case they would fix anything. I was surprised to see the introduction movie and title screen displayed flawlessly!
However, I was stuck with a new problem. The game started up great, even showing the introduction movie (at full speed / quality but without sound), and showed the main title screen. I could click on the GUI buttons on the right, but it seemed some of them didn't respond. New Game / Quickstart didn't work at all, and loading saved games gave an error. However, I could bring up preferences, the credits, and exit the game, so part of it was working. Also, there was no sound - no music, no sound for the intro movie, no sound effects when I click on things. Now, I know sound works on my linux system, and I can even use sound in other wine programs. I'm not quite sure what the problem is.
I later discovered this was a permissions problem. Wine didn't have enough permission to create files in the Civ3 folder, so I gave full permissions recursively (777) to all files in the Civ3 folder, including the Civ3 folder itself (which I had forgotten last time), and this allowed me to start a new game!
At this point, everything looks great, even the fonts, civiliopedia, everything works visually. But I still have two minor problems :
1.) There is still no sound. At all. It works in linux and other wine programs - I'm sure it's not a volume issue. I just can't get Civ3 to play back any sound in any part of the program. I checked Civ's internal volume controls, and they're all enabled and marked as full. I've tried tracing dsound without success - I'm not even sure if Civ3 uses dsound. I would really like to have both music and sound effects in the game. I saw a post at appdb.winehq.com on the page for Civ3 that the sound was broken in recent versions of wine, and it used to work. I'm about to try an older version to see if this is true, and I'll come back and post here with my results.
2.) The keyboard doesn't always work properly. Sometimes it works fine, after playing for a while it stops working though, or sometimes the numpad works, but the other buttons don't work, etc. I really like using the keyboard (r for roads, f for fortify, b for build, and the numpad are REALLY helpful), so I'd really like to get this back.
Does anyone know anything about running Civ3 on linux better than I have? What can I do with wine to further debug / find the problem, or does anyone have anything I can try? I've thought of using some native DLL's from my windows system, but I don't know which ones to try. Is anyone able to run civ3 successfully with sound / keyboard support, using regular old wine? What about my problem with cvscedega - maybe if I get around that, it could run much better than wine - does anyone know about it?
Also, neither of the expansion packs work, they crash before anything is displayed in the GUI, using either cvscedega or wine. Does anyone have any hints on how I might fix those?
Thanks in advance everyone. Hopefully this post will be helpful to some of you other civ fans out there. I'd REALLY like to play Civ3!
Update: The keyboard problem seems to go away as long as I never switch away from the Civ window during play (switching to a virtual terminal is OK, just not other windows). Also, I found where the game stores its music (as MP3's), so I've been playing that while playing, but of course there's still no sound effects, and the music is often for the wrong era/situation. I haven't tried the previous version of wine yet, mostly because I don't know what version in the past I should try. I'd appreciate any input.