While I’ve always owned games consoles too, I’ve come to think of the PC as the definitive gaming platform. By being a completely open platform with no publishing fees, games on the PC can be more innovative and creative than on any other platform. Even if this innovation doesn’t always result in a great game, it still means that PC gamers get to experience some really unique game concepts that would be unlikely to get the green light on the major games consoles. Republic – The Revolution certainly is an unusual game. Playing the part of a political activist, you must rise up against the totalitarian state who brutally dragged away your parents when you were a child. Rather than grab a machine gun and single handedly take on the entire national guard like most videogame heroes, in this game you’ll actually organise your own political party and try and win you way to power using extortion, bribery, propaganda and all the usual healthy democratic processes.
The game should install just fine on modern versions of Windows. Simply place the first game disc into your PCs optical drive and follow the on-screen prompts. If the games autorun menu does not appear automatically, browse to the CD in Computer/This PC and run the “Autorun.exe” program manually. If you install the game to the default directory, be sure to see the troubleshooting section regarding save games and configuration files.
The installation process worked just fine on our PC, but it failed to create the games shortcuts properly. You may need to manually add the program to your Start menu or Start screen. If you installed the game to the default directory, you can find the games executable file in “C:\Program Files (x86)\Eidos Interactive\Elixir Studios\Republic\Main\Republic\Exe\Republic.exe”. For a tutorial on how to manually add programs to your Start menu, click here.
There were no patches released for the game, so once it is installed you’re ready to play.
Playing the game
Launch the game by clicking on its shortcut on the Start menu or Start screen. If you cannot find the shortcut, see the instructions above for help with creating one. If the game doesn’t start, you may need to run it as administrator. This should only need to be done the first time, after that it should launch and run under a standard user account just fine, as long as the games installation folder has read/write permissions. You may see a window appear telling you that your computer does not meet the minimum specifications to run the game. If you’re playing on a modern PC you can ignore this, the program is simply incorrectly detecting your computers specifications.
Tweaking visual quality
Before you start planning your uprising there are a few visual quality settings you might like to change. From the games main menu, choose “Options” and then “Video”. The options shown below will then be displayed.
On modern machines, Color Depth should always be set to 32. You can ramp the Detail Level right up and turn on Ground View too. Since this game is over a decade old, even relatively modest PCs should be able to run it at highest quality settings with no issues. Click on the “Advanced” button to find some more settings to tweak.
There are a lot more options here, but again on a modern PC it’s simply a case of setting everything to its highest setting (like in the picture shown above). If you find the game runs sluggishly after changing these settings, you may need to dial them back a little, but even modest modern PCs should handle these settings without any issues.
Republic saves these settings to a file called republicoptions.ini that is located (by default) in C:\Program Files (x86)\Eidos Interactive\Elixir Studios\Republic\Main\SaveGame. You can edit this file by hand using notepad your favourite text editor. We tried editing the file to increase the screen resolution passed 1152×864 but this caused the graphics to be stretched in a strange way and part of the games display was lost off the bottom of the screen.
With graphical settings all configured you can now dive right into the game and start planning your political uprising.
Problems saving games and configurations – Like many old titles, Republic saves its game data and settings into the same folder as the game itself. In some instances on more modern versions of Windows, this will mean that save games and configuration files cannot be written. To solve this problem you can either run the game as administrator (right click on the games icon and choose “Run as administrator”) or, better still, set the permissions on your Republic game folder so that your user account has full control/read write permissions. You can find a tutorial on how to configure folder permissions here. The games default installation directory is “C:\Program Files (x86)\Eidos Interactive\Elixir Studios\Republic”.
Republic The Revolution is a difficult game to learn. Basically you will spend most of your time assigning tasks to your fellow party members. These tasks might be to investigate an area, distribute propaganda or other politically motivated actions. Your allies can only do so much in one day, so you will need to prioritise your actions accordingly. Sadly the games tutorial and its manual don’t make it easy to understand the game at all, so you might want to visit Youtube and watch some other more experienced players play the game in order to get the hang of it.
Click on any screenshot to enlarge it.