Thanks to a request by dhd in a comment on the downloads page, I decided to go looking through backups of my old websites. Below is a posted I wrote around 2003⁄04 about how to fix problems with running the game Settlers 2 on Windows XP. I’m pretty certain the same wont work on newer versions of Windows sadly, but for those XP users still out there who want to play your (very) old copy of Settlers 2 — enjoy…
The following information is specifically for the Settlers 2 Gold Edition, but it should apply equally well to the Settlers 2 with the latest update patch (1.51) which can be downloaded from Bluebyte
How to run it
The settlers 2 will run natively in Windows XP. However, on some configurations it is not possible to use higher resolutions. The default refresh rate will also be 60Hz, which with most monitors is likely to cause eye strain. (2012 note: this was written at a time of CRT monitors!)
If you can’t use any resolutions above 640×480 (e.g. if you have a GeForce 4 Ti4xxx video card) you need “VGA Fix for Windows XP” by Simon Hradecky of NOMISSOFT GmbH or AXVGA by Ken Silverman. Download them from the downloads page. Please be warned that this utility patches vga.sys and if you experience display problems as a result you will not be supported by Microsoft, however, I am not aware of any issues caused by this patch. If you experience any problems you can run the patch again to unpatch vga.sys.
As with most of the games on this guide the Settlers 2 will by default use the lowest refresh rate available. To over-ride this you need a utility called UniRefresh by Rob Muller. You can download version 1.42 from the downloads page. I cannot guarantee that the version hosted here is the most up-to-date version. There are many websites that host this utility, so to check for the latest version use a google search.
There are 2 ocasional problems running Settlers 2 that I am currently aware of.
1. An error about no COM‑2 port.
This is usually caused because Settlers 2 supports two players on 1 computer with a split screen mode. It looks for mice on the COM ports but the majority of users today have PS2 or USB mice. If you do not have a COM‑2 port enabled on your system you will get an error. The easiest solution is to change your COM‑1 port (if you have on) to be COM‑2. Settlers 2 seems happy without a COM‑1 port if you have a USB or PS2 mouse.
To change your COM port open device manager, and expand “Ports”.
Open the properties for COM‑1, select the “port settings” tab and click on the “advanced” button.
Change the port to COM2 in the pull-down box, click ok, and click OK again to close the properties.
Close device manager and try re-running Settlers 2.
2. The game simply wont run with or without the patches.
The first thing to try is re-installing the game. If that doesn’t solve the problem then try disabling the in-game sounds.
You should run the game by double-clicking on “S2.exe”, not “Settler2.exe”.
As a last resort you can try using the “NoLFB” utility by Ken Silverman. Download NoLFB from the downloads page.
For more help, I recommend Home of the Underdogs
Cheats & Tips
When you are in the main game screen type the following code (ignore the game windows that appear) W I N T E R
A yellow exclamation mark in a red circle should appear in the top right corner of the game window
If the code doesn’t work then try T H U N D E R instead.
Pressing ALT — F7 will reveal the entire map.
Pressing ALT — F1 to ALT — F6 will change the game speed.
Once the map is revealed you can click on un-occupied territory, and if the land is suitable you will be presented with the option of constructing another Headquarters.
If you want access to all of the missions then use a text editor (e.g. notepad) to edit missions.dat in the save directory.
Change the top row of 1’s and 0’s to be all 1’s. You should have a total of 10 1’s.
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