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It’s a pretty safe assumption that most soldiers who fought in the Vietnam war wouldn’t care to re-live their experience, but that’s exactly what this first person shooter lets you do. That is minus the actual pain, misery and trauma of potentially losing limbs or your life, of course. Playing as rookie solider Dean Shepard, you and your brothers in arms will take part in 16 supposedly historically accurate missions.
The game should install without any particular difficulties on a modern PC. For the CD-ROM version of the game, simply place the fist disc in your computers optical drive and follow the on-screen prompts. If the games autorun menu does not appear, browse to the CD in Computer/This PC and run the “AutoRun.exe” file manually.
During installation, you should choose the “Custom” installation option, do not install Gamespy (since this service no longer works) or DirectX (since the version on the disc is outdated).
If you are installing the game from a digital download service such as GoG.com or Steam, simply follow the instructions provided by that particular digital marketplace.
Before reporting for duty, you should make sure to install the latest patch for your game. The latest patch is patch 1.3. You must make sure to install the correct patch for your region. If you install the US patch onto the European release, for instance, you will end up with a half-patched game that you will need to reinstall from your CDs.
If you have the European version of the game, you can download patch 1.3 here. This patch will update version 1.0 to 1.3 so in this case it’s the only patch you need.
If you bought the game from GoG.com or Steam, you already have the latest version and no additional patching is required.
Playing the game
Unfortunately, as is all to often the case, the biggest obstacle to getting Men of Valor running on a modern PC is the games copy protection. If you have a downloaded version of the game you don’t need to worry about this, but for those of you using the original retail CD-ROM version, it’s certainly something you need to be aware of. The CD version of the game uses SecuROM copy protection, this protection is compatible with Windows 10, but was never terribly reliable in the first place. We weren’t able to get the game to load on our Windows 10 PC until we used a hacked/cracked version of the games executable with the copy protection removed. We’ve seen in the past how SecuROM games can conflict with one another and we suspect that is what maybe happening here.
Unfortunately we cannot link to cracked versions of games due to copyright law, we can tell you however that the crack we used was specifically for the 1.3 update of the game and produced by the group “Reloaded”. Its MD5 hash was 7CD332D1164AF13997C39319323F9E91.
Other than problems due to the games copy protection, there aren’t any other compatibility settings that need to be changed. We do however, recommend disabling any secondary monitors you may have before you start the game.
Tweaking visual quality
Those Vietnamese jungles might have looked impressive back in 2004 but by modern standards Men of Valor isn’t a great looking game. On a modern PC, you’re going to want to make sure the game is set to the highest quality settings possible. Start the game and on the main menu, choose “Options” and then “Video”. Set the options as follows:-
Screen Resolution – Set this to 1280×1024 or as high as your monitor will allow. You will notice that you cannot select any widescreen screen modes, we’ll cover how to do that in a moment.
Texture Detail – Best for Video Card
Reflection Detail – High
Character Shadows – On
Trilinear Filtering – On
High Detail World – On
Gamma, Brightness and Contrast should be set to taste, remember that excessive brightness can crush detail in brighter parts of the image, so go easy.
If you have a gaming graphics card, such as an Nvidia or ATI/AMD board, you can improve the quality of the games visuals by forcing antialiasing on. To do this on Nvidia cards, start the “Nvidia Control Panel” program and then choose “Manage 3D settings”. Then, choose “Program Settings” and select “Men of Valor” from the drop down list. You should then be able to choose “Override any application setting” and “32x CSAA” for the antialiasing options. This should significantly improve the visual quality of the game.
Custom resolutions and widescreen
You will have noticed that in the games options menu, the choice of screen resolutions is fairly limited. It is possible to play in other resolutions, including widescreen resolutions, although if you do play in widescreen mode, elements such as the HUD may appear stretched. The process to get this working is fairly convoluted and will result in your save games being destroyed, so proceed with caution. You will also need to be familiar with manually editing configuration files, if you’re not, check out this quick tutorial.
Start by browsing to the games installation directory. By default, for the retail version of the game, that’s under C:\Program Files (x86)\2015\Men of Valor\VIETNAM. Then, open the “SYSTEM” sub-folder. Find and delete the file “PROFILE_Shepard”. If you created another profile (e.g PROFILE_yourname), delete that too.
Now, find the file “DefUser.ini” and open it in Notepad or your favourite text editor. Search for the section that is labelled “Key=Command mapping”, then find the line “F5=” and change it to read “F5=setres 1920x1080x32” (do not copy the quotation marks). Substitute 1920×1080 for any desired resolution (e.g 1280×720 for 720p).
Now, save and exit this file (if you cannot get the file to save, make sure it is not set to read only mode, then check the troubleshooting section for further help). Now, open and edit the file called “User.ini” and make exactly the same changes there, again remembering to save the file once you are done editing it.
Finally, start the game again. You can now simply tap the F5 key to switch to your new screen resolution at any time during play. However, you will need to do this every time you start a new level or after any cut-scenes.
Multiplayer and other notes
Men of Valor features several multiplayer modes. Unfortunately the Gamespy service that used to facilitate this has closed down. Instead, you can use the Evolve service to arrange multiplayer games, although we haven’t tested this. you can also use Evolve to take screenshots, videos or broadcast your game to Twitch if you so desire.
Game stutters and problems with mouse sensitivity – If you find that the game stutters or aiming is difficult even after turning down the mouse sensitivity in the game options, you might find that disabling vertical sync (vsync) helps. Unfortunately, there’s no option to do this within the game, so you will need to resort to manually editing some configuration files.
Start by browsing to the games installation directory. By default, for the retail version of the game, that’s under C:\Program Files (x86)\2015\Men of Valor\VIETNAM. Then, open the “SYSTEM” sub-folder. Find the file called “MenofValor.ini” and open it in Notepad or your favourite text editor. Use the search command in your editor (Edit->Find in Notepad) and search for the line “UseVSync”. By default, this will read ” UseVSync=True”, edit it so it reads ” UseVSync=False” (do not copy the quotation marks). Save the configuration file and exit your text editor (if you can’t save the file, see the paragraph below). Now, run the game again and hopefully the stuttering should be eliminated.
Problems saving games or configuration files – Like many older games, Men of Valor stores its save game files and other configuration information in its installation directory. If you installed the game into the program files or program files (x86) folders, you may find that the default Windows security settings prevent the game from saving any data. To fix this problem set the permissions on your 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.
Click on any screenshot to enlarge it.