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Another game set in the lucrative Star Wars universe, Rogue Squadron casts you in the role of an elite rebel fighter pilot, tasked with defending rebel strongholds and striking back against the evil imperial forces. You’ll get to fly a variety of nimble starships as you blast your way around the galaxy.
Rogue Squadron should install without any issues on a 32 bit operating system. Unfortunately, yet again LucasArts have used a 16 bit installer program for this game therefore rendering it incompatible with 64 bit operating systems. Luckily there are several replacement installers you can use. User Medfreeman has created two replacement installers on Github. Visit this page then scroll down until you see “Installation”. You should now see links to two installers, RS3DInstaller-0.96_nglide_102.exe and RS3DInstaller-0.96_nglide_103.exe. As you can see from the page, one installer makes the game run more smoothly while the other doesn’t crash at the end of every mission. Choose whichever one you like.
Before we learned of these replacement installers, we also created one of our own, you can download it here (link broken? Let me know here). Simply download the installer, pop your game CD into your computers optical drive and then run the installer and follow all on-screen prompts. Our installer does not NOT install the latest patch or automatically configure the game, so it can be useful if you want to experiment with alternative patches or configurations.
Before you attempt to play the game you should install the 1.21 update patch. You can download the patch here (link broken? Let me know here). If you installed the game using Medfreeman’s replacement installer, you do not need to install this patch. Simply run the patch once it has downloaded and it will detect the games installation directory and update the files appropriately. There’s one more thing you need to do before you start playing, so read on to the next section.
Configuring the Game
Before you can start flying your X-Wing, you will need to configure some basic game settings using the games configuration tool. Open the games installation folder and find the “Rogue.exe” file. Right click on it and choose “Run as Administrator”. You will need to enter your administrator password and/or click “Yes” when Windows User Account Control prompts you to do so. The window shown below will then appear.
Click on “Hardware Configuration”. A Sub menu will then appear.
Click on “Change 3D Video Card”. Another menu should appear now.
You can play the game using either Direct3D or 3DFX/Glide using a suitable Glide wrapper. Use the menu here to choose your preferred method. If you are intending to play using nGlide, please see the notes under “Playing in 3DFX/Glide mode”. When you have selected your preferred 3D rendering method, click on “Accept”. You will now be returned to the previous menu. You may also wish to click on “Joystick Options” and make sure your preferred controller is selected. When you are finished configuring these options, click on “Done”.
You will now find yourself back on the previous menu. You should now click on “Exit to Windows”, rather than launching the game directly from this menu. Do not attempt to uninstall the game from this menu if you installed it with our replacement installer.
Playing the Game
You can start the game by running “Star Wars Rogue Squadron” from the Start menu or Start screen. No compatibility settings should be required. Running the game as administrator is not necessary either, though you must always run the configuration tool as administrator if you want to make any changes.
Tweaking Game Settings
There aren’t too many settings you can configure in Rogue Squadron. Start the game and then click on “Settings”. This will open a sub menu with several settings menus you can configure. Under “Video”, you can set the games resolution. Set this to the highest available mode, which should be 1280×1024. Under “Audio”, you can enable surround sound if you have a suitable surround sound setup attached to your PC.
Playing in 3DFX/Glide mode
When Rogue Squadron was originally released, the now defunct 3DFX accelerator cards were still very popular and so the game fully supports the Glide standard that the 3DFX cards used. It is actually possible to play the game in 3DFX mode using the nGlide wrapper software. By doing so, you can improve the graphics and force the game into higher resolutions and widescreen screen modes. Unfortunately, the current version of nGlide isn’t compatible with the fan-produced fix for the game. That means, the game will crash and need to be reloaded after every mission. A fix for this problem is promised for when version 1.4 of nGlide launches.
If you want to give nGlide a try, first install the program if you have not done so already. If you installed the game using Medfreeman’s replacement installer, nGlide should be installed for you automatically. If not, you can download nGlide here. It should then just be a matter of following the steps under “Configuring the Game” but choosing “Voodoo Card (driver: GLIDE)” instead of “”Primary Display Driver (Driver: D3D)” when setting up the video card. On our system this was not sufficient however. If you find the game still won’t launch in 3DFX mode, despite being configured to do so, you may need to fire up the registry editor (run it as administrator) and add the following string.
For 64 bit systems go to “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\LucasArts Entertainment Company LLC\Rogue Squadron\v1.0”
For 32 bit systems go to “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\LucasArts Entertainment Company LLC\Rogue Squadron\v1.0”
Add a new string value called “VDEVICE” (if it doesn’t exist) and set the value of the string to “Voodoo (Glide)” (without the quotes).
If you are unfamiliar with editing the registry, see this tutorial.
When you have successfully configured the game to run in 3DFX/Glide mode, you can use the nGlide configuration tool (search for “Configurator” on the Start menu or Start screen) to force the game into any resolution of your choice.
Rogue Squadron supports all manner of joysticks and actually works really well with the Xbox 360 controller without the need for any additional software such as Xpadder. Start the game and go to the Settings menu, then choose “Joystick”. You can then redefine all the inputs on your gamepad or joystick to taste.
Troubleshooting and known issues
Camera does not follow players fighter craft – Playing under Windows 7 we encountered this camera glitch. For reasons unknown this didn’t seem to affect the game under Windows 8, but your mileage may vary. During play, if you play with the chase camera you may notice the camera slowly gets further and further away from your craft. This will continue until your fighter is way off in the distance, making controlling it absolutely impossible. Several workarounds were suggested on the web, from recording the game with the FRAPS game recording/benchmarking tool to enabling antialiasing on the graphics cards control panel. Nothing we tried seemed to work though. Your only option is to reset the camera to a different view using the function keys. Cockpit view works well, but playing the game in this view can be somewhat difficult. Note that several customers report that this happens on the GOG.Com re-release of the game too.
Game crashes at the end of a mission – If your game crashes at the end of every mission, you can try downloading a fan-made fix for the game here. Simply download the zip file then extract the contents to your Rogue Squadron game folder (that’s “c:\Games\Rogue” if you used the default directory when installing the game with our replacement installer). The file will overwrite the existing game executable, so you might want to take a backup first. We tested the fix and it seemed to work well for us, though the original creator stressed that it needed more testing, so it might be a good idea to keep the old version handy too. This fix may also have compatibility issues when running the game in Glide mode.
Problems saving games – Like many older games, Rogue Squadron places its save game files and various configuration files in the same directory that it is installed to. Profiles and save games are stored in a sub-folder called “PlayerProfiles”. This should not cause any problems if you installed to the default location when using our replacement installer. If you saved to another folder you can manually check and edit the permissions on the folder by following this tutorial.
Click on any screenshot to enlarge it.