Star Wars: XWing Alliance without CD under Win 7 in High Resolution
The goal is to discover under recent hardware one of the best space sim of all time.
This is a user's guide allowing people to rediscover this game dating more than 10 years...
You must be an official owner of the game licence, this post is not a way of any kind to be non compliant with sales & copyright legislation.
Be prepared to make backup copies of your XWingAlliance.exe file
The game has been designed to work under Win 98. It works perfectly well under Win XP.
STEP 1: Running under XWing Alliance without CD under Win XP
1. Install the game on a PC running Win XP (impossible with the official disks under Win 7).
NB. If you copy-paste your installed game on your Win 7 PC then the game runs perfectly at this stage provided you put in the CD reader the official CD. But we are fed-up playing the role of disk jockey. So at this stage do not copy anything and stay on the Win XP PC.
2. Follow clearly the instructions provided at Gamecopyworld.com
You need first to have at your disposal the official patch 2.02 of the game by Lucas Arts.
2.1 Tweaking the EXE file
* Make a *full* HD installation of XWA from CD1.
* Copy the complete directory WAVE from CD1 to the XWA root directory, e.g. C:\GAMES\XWA.
* Copy the complete MOVIES directory from CD1 to the XWA root directory. This will add some files to the XWA MOVIES dir.
* Copy the file DISK2.ID from CD2 to the XWA root directory.
* Copy all BATTLE*.SMN files from the MOVIES dir on CD2 to the XWA MOVIES directory, e.g. C:\GAMES\XWA\MOVIES.
* Apply the X-Wing Alliance 2.02 Update.
* Copy the supplied registry setup file regsetup.exe to the XWA root directory and execute it to adjust the game registry settings for No-CD playing.
* Remove the read-only attribute from XWAINGALLIANCE.EXE (if necessary).
* Finally copy the crack XWA202CR.EXE to the XWA root directory and execute the crack.
* Execute XWINGALLIANCE.EXE to play the game.
XWingAlliance.exe is then modified.
2.2 Tweaking the game launcher
* First follow one of the previous VTeC/Laxity v1.0, v1.01 or v2.02 instructions.
* Copy the following directories from CD#2 to the game directory:
o Wave\Zaletta to \WAVE
o Wave\Frontend\B*M* to \WAVE\FRONTEND\
o Wave\MissionVoice\B*M* to \WAVE\MISSIONVOICE\
* Extract the X-WINGLAUNCHCR.EXE Patch from the archive to the game directory and execute it.
* Run Regedit.exe and edit the following registry keys and exchange for the root directory of the game installation, e.g. C:\Games\XWingAlliance:
o [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\LucasArts Entertainment Company LLC\X-Wing Alliance\v1.0]
STEP 2: Make the game running under Win 7
3. You can now copy-paste your installled game on a Win XP PC to your Win 7 High Tech machine (via a network or via an external HDD)
4. Edit again the REGEDIT but this time under Windows 7
Mine is this one:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\LucasArts Entertainment Company LLC]
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\LucasArts Entertainment Company LLC\X-Wing Alliance]
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\LucasArts Entertainment Company LLC\X-Wing Alliance\v1.0]
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\LucasArts' X-Wing Alliance]
"DisplayName"="LucasArts' X-Wing Alliance"
Analyze Path section is of paramount importance, putting the name of the CD Rom driver whereas the game works from the HDD only would cause a severe sound issue (music of J Williams played from the hard drive would stop without reason or would hang with a nasty noise), so stick to the location of your game on the HDD (the file syscheck.exe stands on your HDD).
5. Display problems with modern ATI Cards
With ATI cards the AI vessels are often fuzzy, blurred.
There is only one way to solve this issue.
You need Xwahacker.exe
Use XWAhacker tool:
5.1 Launch command prompt: c:\
5.2 launch xwahacker with the following commands:
xwahacker xwingalliance.exe -p 11
xwahacker xwingalliance.exe -p 7
XwingAlliance.exe is again modified.
6. Getting a wide screen resolution
Method 1 (the best one)
Explanations are there
5.1 Download a hex editor: http://sourceforge.net/projects/hexbox/
5.2 Chose the vertical resolution in game (1280*1024) close to the one you want to have (1920*1080)
5.3 Load the XwingAlliance.exe in the hex editor and proceed to changes
In my case:
If it's 1280x1024, search for 00 04 00 00 8A.
* 1680x1050 - Replace 00 04 with 1A 04.
* 1920x1080 - Replace 00 04 with 38 04.
Next, search for 00 05 00 00 89.
* 1680x1050 - Replace 00 05 with 90 06.
* 1920x1080 - Replace 00 05 with 80 07.
Method 2 (but you might get more distorsion)
Use XWAhacker tool:
* Download the files in a directory
* Add XWingAlliance.exe in it (keep a backup of it)
* Run changeres.bat, it allows replacing one of the resolutions by another. I replaced 800*600 by 1920*1080.
* Now load the game, and change your resolution to the "corresponding 4:3 resolution."
Note about resolution:
The game has a couple of hardwired 4:3 resolutions. You can hack one of these resolutions to a custom res of your choosing. However, if you change the vertical res, you change the zoom level. The bigger the change, the bigger the zoom change.
For instance, let's say you want to use 1920x1200. If you were to hack 1024x768 to 1920x1200 and then select 1024x768, it would play at 1920x1200, but would be zoomed out WAY too far, because you increased 768 to 1200. But if you hacked 1600x1200 to 1920x1200 and selected 1600x1200, the zoom would be perfect, because you didn't change the selected vertical res at all.
Then it's finally over, you have an old game in superb resolution and wide screen.
It was a long process but you will not regret it.
A few in game screenshots are coming...
I am running the game under an Alienware M17XR3 laptop, Win 7 UK Home edition , I7 processor, 6 GB RAM, ATI 6870 M, 128 GB SSD + 320 GB SATA, resolution 1920*1080.
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