Theme Park World

Genre: Strategy
Release Year: 1999
Developer: Bullfrog Productions
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Age Rating: 3+
Playability Status: Perfect (Windows 7) Unplayable (Windows 8)
Tested On: Windows 7 x64, Windows 8 x64
Availability: Copyright retained - Out of print/unavailable

What would you do with a million dollars? In one episode of the cult cartoon show South Park, precocious pudgy preteen Eric Cartman decides to spend the million dollars left to him by his late grandmother on his own theme park. With no pesky visitors, he’s free to ride all the rides by himself, but his plan soon comes undone when he has to hire maintenance staff and other workers to keep things going. Fortunately, you don’t need an unexpected windfall to have a go at running your own Theme Park, you just need a copy of Theme Park World (or Sim Theme Park in the United States). Now you can design your own amusement paradise, research new rides, hire and fire staff all from the comfort of your computer chair. Theme Park World includes both a simulation and a sandbox mode, letting budding entrepreneurs run a fully functional Theme Park, while younger players can simply design a park without worrying too much about the boring business side.


Theme Park World should install without any issues on a modern PC. Simply insert the CD and follow the on-screen prompts. If the CD does not auto-run, explore the contents of the CD in Windows Explorer or File Explorer and run the “Autorun.exe” file. You should then see a menu allowing you to install the game.


Before playing Theme Park World on a modern PC, you must install the version 2.0 patch. You can download the patch here. Simply run the patch once it has downloaded and the game will start.

Running the game

Theme Park World should start without too many problems on a Windows 7 PC, as long as you installed the 2.0 patch as discussed above. Unfortunately on our Windows 8 machine we were not able to get the game to start at all. The game would start to play the intro then inform us that “TP.ICD” had stopped working.

Tweaking visual quality

Before you start planning your amazing new park, you might want to take a moment to tweak the games settings for best results on a modern PC. To access the games settings, start a game then press the Escape (Esc) key. This should open the games menu. Now, choose “Options”. On a modern PC you should be able to turn all the quality options up to the maximum without any drop in performance. Set the options as follows for best results.

Near the top left of the screen there should be an option “3D Card Rendering”. Make sure this is enabled.

Change the screen resolution to 800×600. Later in the guide we’ll show you how you can increase this even further. Remember Theme Park World is a non-widescreen (4:3) aspect ratio game. If you are playing on a widescreen monitor, you should have black borders at the sides of the screen.

Change the graphics quality slider to High and the Audio Quality to 100%.

Configure all other options to taste.

There are also some hidden options for screen resolution we can access by editing a text file within the games directory. If you want to do this, follow these steps:-

1) Exit the game if you haven’t done so already.

2) Browse to the games installation folder using Windows Explorer. By default this is C:\Program Files\Bullfrog\Theme Park World on 32 bit systems and C:\Program Files (x86)\Bullfrog\Theme Park World on 64 bit systems.

3) Find a file called _Resolution.sam and rename it to Resolution.sam (remove the underscore character at the start of the file name).

4) Click on the Resolution.sam file and choose to open it in Notepad. Inside this file you will see a note explaining how to activate extra resolutions. Amazingly for such an old game, Theme Park World actually supported high definition screen resolutions. However, the monitors at the time were not widescreen, so you probably want to avoid modes like 1600×1200 or 2048×1536.

5) To change to one of the extra resolutions, locate the line beginning “Res.RESOLUTION” at the very bottom of the file, then simply change the number on this line according to the instructions in the text file. For instance, to use 1280×1024 screen mode (works best on a 1080p monitor) use “Res.RESOLUTION 5”. Don’t forget to save your changes when you are done.

6) If you did everything correctly, next time you start the game it should start in your chosen screen resolution.

You’re now all set to start planning and building your park, have fun!

Can you submit a fix?

Know how to get this game working in Windows 8? Help the community by submitting a comment and letting us know!


  1. emilio says:

    hello, I have a problem with my game that I can not fix, and install it and when you start sending me that I have a problem with the TP.exe, I do??

  2. BuckoA51 says:

    Hi Emilio, not sure I understand your comment. You’re having trouble starting the game? Which version of Windows are you using?

  3. Marco says:

    I have Windows 8 and i managed to run the game.

    – Install Game
    – Install 2.0 Patch
    – Use NO-CD TP.EXE and replace with original one (Original 260KB, NO-CD Version 3647KB)
    – Install Microsoft SafeDisc Patch
    – Set TP.EXE to Win7 compatiblity mode
    – Play the game

  4. deeerp says:

    Hello. I can’t install the game. after pressing the install buttom and accepting the licence, nothing happens. you got any clue what this could be?
    Im running windows 7.

  5. Edo says:

    Hi there, I managed to run Theme Park world on Windows 8 x64. However, I can’t see no mouse pointer.. kind of frustrating! Do you know what can I do? maybe modifying some *.sam files?

    Many thanks!

    • Vetty says:

      Managed to get it working on Windows 8, only I’m having this same problem with having no mouse pointer.

      • Czarina says:

        I have it on windows 8 and am too having an issue with the mouse pointer… any suggestions? please help!

        • GoingGift says:

          I had the same problem in Windows 8 and got it fixed.
          Go to Data folder. There are SAM files named low, mid, and high.
          Open them all and simply change the number on GraphicalOptions.RENDER32 and GraphicalOptions.TEXTURE32 from 0 to 1. Save the files and that should solve the problem : )

  6. Albin says:

    Ive just installed it on my windows 7 and it runs fine except for the fact that i cant hear what the little guy in the bottom right corner is saying.. its like his audiotrack isnt there.. any idead on how to help?

  7. Benjamin says:

    I just can’t get it to work on my windows 8 laptop. I’ve tried the patch, i’ve tried running it in compability mode… I’ve searched the internet thin and i still don’t know what to do. Have any of you guys any tips?

  8. Cherry says:

    The only issue I’m having is saving the ‘_resolution.sam’ file. Someone suggested moving it first, then changing it but I can’t delete it either. Basically I can’t alter that file.
    Please help – I love this game!!! ;D

    • BuckoA51 says:

      Okay, first of all try right clicking the file and choose “Properties”. Is the Read-only attribute set? If so un-set it.

      Secondly, if you’re still having problems it’s probably Windows security locking you out, follow this tutorial and chagne permissions on the Theme Park World folder –

      • Cherry says:

        Thank you for getting back to me :)
        It is read-only but I can’t change it…even though I am an administrator. I also can’t do the steps from the video you sent me as the computer won’t allow me to add any users or even allow them permission. It seems as though even though I’m an administrator the computer isn’t letting me do anything!!
        Any thoughts?
        Thanks in advance x

        • BuckoA51 says:

          That’s not normal, what error do you get when you try to add your user account to the permissions?

          • Cherry says:

            There’s no error. The ‘add’ button is light grey so I can’t click on it. This is the case with the ‘full control’ tick box also…

              • Cherry says:

                Ok great! I have taken ownership of the folder and now have successfully changed the permissions for theme park world! However I still can’t edit the ‘_resolution.sam’ file or even change the ‘read only’ status. It tells me ‘you will need to provide administrator permission to change these attributes’ but when I click ‘continue’ it tells me ‘an error occurred applying attributes to the file’ and that ‘access is denied’.

                • Mark Langdahl says:

                  If it’s called _resolution.sam it’s inactive. Can’t you just create a new file called resolution.sam and insert the contents from _resolution.sam?

  9. Cherry says:

    I’m going to go and sit in the corner with my dunce hat on…I have now managed to change he resolution file. Can I just confirm…what should it be? 5? or 0?
    Is there anything to be done about the “TP.ICD has stopped working” error?

  10. Pop says:

    Hey, I have installed and can play the disc on the auto game but on the full one once i click the gate i want to go it the game stops after it does all the zooming in and just on the loading screen then it tells me the tp.icd has stoped working. I have windows 7, I installed the v2.0 patch just in case it was that but it hasn’t made a difference…. I’m a little lost on what to do

  11. Kevin says:

    I have the same problem that says Pop, how can i fix it? I use windows 7 x86

  12. Beata says:

    Ok, I am getting very aggrivated! I love this game! But…ever since I got a new computer the cd game version wont work on it, so I tired downloading the game to my pc but instead of downloading and saving and working….its telling me theres an error and that it cant download..please help!

  13. Stephen Colville says:

    Hi, the game installed fine and runs, but when I get to the main menu, nothing in the background moves. The cursor works fine and I can create a new player. But once I get to the park select screen, I select a park and get the unlocking sound, but nothing else moves. Plus, the advisor doesn’t appear and says nothing. The background sound is also looped.

    Any advice?

  14. G00B says:

    I have Windows 7 and I have the gold edition. I installed both CDs and I tested it and it go to the main menu page thing but it would have very bad FPS. I downloaded the 2.0 patch and now it won’t even open when I click on the desktop shortcut. When I try to open it by re-insterting the CD and I click play it says: C:/Windows/Start Menu/Programs/SimTheme Park/SimTheme Park.Ink
    The specified file was not found

    How do I fix this? Or is it even fix-able?

  15. Dave says:

    Open the autorun (as an admin of course) even with compatibility set to older versions of Windows and with minimal settings… and once I click install nothing happens. Can’t get the game installed.

  16. Nathan says:

    Okay so the resolution.sam isen’t working i follow the instructions and its still not doing anything?

  17. Chris says:

    I fooled the steps to fix the mouse bug, but I’m still getting trouble with it. Any suggestions? Because I would love to relive my childhood with this game :P

  18. Tom says:

    i can not for some reason get the setup.exe file to run i either loads up the install screen but does nothing after i hit install or it gives me a “Could not open configuration file: F\autorun\autorun.apm” error and will not let me install, I am running windows 7 and i have done everything i can think of the get this to work with no avail any ideas?

  19. Hi, I have the original CD-ROM and I putted it in my computer. Browsed to Autorun.exe and double-clicked it. I selected my language and clicked next. Then Install now. All windows is shutting down. I can repeat this all the time, it wont install… I run Windows 7 Professional x64. Please help me with this problem! Thank you guys/girls!

  20. To be more specific about this this is what happens:
    – I can’t install the game?!
    – I tried to copy all the files from the original CD to a folder and i converted the folder to .iso, tried to mount it and install it that way but the installer just quit/crashes?!
    – I installed Windows 98 in a Virtual Box and installed TPW inside of it . I didn’t get so far because problems with resolution and color but i managed to install it anyway.
    – I run Windows 7 Professional x64 and I am administrator on the computer.

    Any suggestions?

    • BuckoA51 says:

      You need to use special software to convert a disk to an ISO or disk image, especially for retail bought games.

      Try running the installer explicitly as administrator

      Has your Windows username got any non-standard characters in it (e.g characters with accents, or any characters other than the standard A-Z, a-z and 0 to 9?)

      Are you installing to the standard, default path?

      What antivirus/security software are you running?

      Try XP compatibility mode on the installer.

  21. I used a special software to convert the folder to an iso-file. I don’t remember what is called right now, but it was a proper one and i was able to boot it with Virtual Clone Drive.

    I have tried running it as administrator both the Autorun.exe and the Setup.exe as well.

    My computer is part of an domain but i created a separate account outside the domain with no non-standard characters but still no success.

    Yes I installed it to it’s standard default path, never touched it.

    I user Trend Micro as antivirus and i deactivated it before i began the installation.

    I have tried the following compatibility modes:
    Windows 95
    Windows 98
    Windows ME/2000
    Windows XP (All service packs)
    Windows Vista (All service packs)

    I really can’t see how this can’t work..

  22. Shafeek says:

    Sim theme park was my favourite game since my childhood. I played it in my playstation..happy to know that its available in pc. I am using windows 7. Where can i find the game?? from where can i download it?
    Please share the link. Thank u :-)

  23. j4m84 says:

    im having an issue with the no cursor on the game.. when i press ALT+TAB, there is a cursor.. however on the game itself, there is no cursor,, can somebody please help me…

  24. julee says:

    hi i downloaded the patch and my game still wont work on windows 7
    before today i have had no problems playing the game but now i really want to play on it . its not working :(

  25. Kevin says:

    I have downloaded it, and it works perfect, but i can’t see the cursor (mouse). I see all fine, the game runs and i can play without problem.
    My configuration is:
    -Windows 10 x64
    -Running it with Compatibility mode -> Win XP service pack 2 and in Administrator
    I upgrade it to v2.0

    Thanks, and i hope you will find a solution, i’m working on it too.

  26. Kenric says:


    So I installed the game and upgraded it to v2.0, every time I start it up it says TP.exe has stopped working.

    I’ve tried running it with Compatibility mode and in administrator, and I can’t figure out why it wont work. I’m running it on Windows 7.

    Please help?

  27. Maarten says:

    I found that a lot of the times Logitec Setpoint conflicts with installers on x64 windows. When install hangs or doesn’t seem to start => open resource monitor, locate the setup in CPU tab, right-click and analyze wait chain. if any process seems to hold it back (like setpoint) kill it.

  28. Mark says:

    Hey, trying to get this game to work, absolutely loved it as a kid, however I am not very tech savvy. When i put the game into the disk drive it wont run, so then i go into files and double click the autorun.exe file, once i do that i get an error message saying ” could not open configuration file: D;\autorun\autorun.amp” Any tips on resolving this? i have tried running it in both xp and vista compatibility modes as administrator to no avail. I would really love to play this game again.

  29. Artur says:

    nothing happens when I click ‘Install’. Can anybody help?

  30. Victoria says:

    Hi I followed your instructions to install the game on my windows 7 home premium pc, it let me install it but when i click play, nothing happens. My mouse makes the ‘loading’ symbol for a little while but then goes back to normal. Any help?

  31. Samantha says:

    Hi, I’m having a problem. I have the gold edition. I installed both discs, set compatibility mode, and then installed your fix. I’m still getting the same “the specified file was not found” I managed to get this game to work on my windows 7 laptop previously, but I now have windows 10. Can anyone tell me what exactly I need to do to try to get this game going again?

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