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Spider's RPG World - Installation
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Installing the Games

This information is for those who either just bought the game or are revisiting Infinity Engine games represented herein.  This will include the following list of games:

  • Baldur's Gate I
  • Baldur's Gate I: Tales of the Sword Coast
  • Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn
  • Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal
  • Ice Wind Dale I
  • Ice Wind Dale I: Heart of Winter
  • Ice Wind Dale II
  • The Temple of Elemental Evil

I installed in the following order and the list uses acronyms.  After inserting each disk of each game give it a minute or two until the operating system opens a window with options.  Cancel out of that window.  Then click on the installer's next or OK button.

  1. Install BGI and BGI: TotSC

    It is highly recommended that a full install be the norm of the day.  While on the surface this may not matter, it will come into play later on in the process.  With the size of the hard drives of today, compared with those when the game was released, this should not a concern.

    Note: When the installer comments about there not being enough disk space on your computer ignore it, clicking on the Yes button.  It is highly recommended you install all the games to anywhere but your C:\Program Files directory.  This has more to do with the annoying habit of later versions of Windows and its protections.

  2. Install the official patch for TotSC:

    Get the Official patch

    Note: If you did not install TotSC do not install the patch for it.  Instead install the patch for BGI only (American/United Kingdom) or this patch for BGI (International).  If you did install the patch for TotSC, and you are a non-American player, there is a patch for the United Kingdom and a patch for International players.  Install them instead.

    Alert: Do not install the BGI and the TotSC patches.  If you do so you will get the warning: An Assertion failed in D:\Dev\Baldur\UIControlButtons.cpp at line number 302.  At this point the only thing to do is to uninstall the game via Windows' Control Panel > Programs and Feature, delete the directory, and re-install from scratch.

  3. Install the DirectX patch

    Get the Official patch

    Note: This is optional and does not affect a single-player game. However, and the jury is out on this, if you plan on playing a multi-player game it should not hurt to install it.  The linked patch above is the English rendition. For the International rendition, click here.

  4. Sound problems

    If you have sound problems after installing the BGI + TotSC games, you are likely to have problems hearing voices, footsteps, and the like.  All is not lost.  A discussion thread explaining some of the trials and tribulations can be read over on the Gibberling3 web site.  It is solely thru the assistance of Jarno (the Imp) that the issue was resolved.  A strong vote of confidence is in order for his aide, support and comfort.  In essence, most modern computers are likely to have more than the old-fashioned two speakers that the game was designed around.  And this applies to BGII Shadows of Amn as well.  Also, and this is not tried and true, it might also have something to do with the sound being on the motherboard.  Most people using an add-on sound card seem to have no problem with this, with the caveat that the highest setting seems to be 5.1 speakers set to the card's CMSS-3D, or whatever this feature may be called by the manufacturer.

    It is easily resolved.  Go to Windows' Control Panel and look for the sound card used in your computer, looking for the audio manager specific to your system.  Look for the Speakers tab and select the two speaker (stereo) setup.  Test the game by starting a new character, or conversely, opening the Mission-Pack-Save game, walking up and talking to a non-player character.  If you hear their voice then all is good.  Exit the game, change the speaker setting to the four speaker (quadraphonic) selection.  Start and check the game.  That is likely the highest setting you will be able to achieve, but test your system as the results may vary.

  5. Backup

    You should now, hopefully, have a clean full install of Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast.  Start the game and test it, but do not save.  Since all modification by-and-large will use an unmodified copy of this game, make a backup.  And this can not be stressed enough.  It is suggested that you create a sub-directory in your Black Isle directory, calling it Unmodded, and copy the entirety of the BGI + TotSC to it.  When a modification requests to know the location of your BGI + TotSC game, point it to this directory.  And since hard drives are almost like candy, perhaps make a duplicate of this backup.

  6. Screen Resolution

    Note: So far this has been all about playing the original game, Baldur's Gate and Tales of the Sword Coast (BGI + TotSC).  The maximum resolution is 640 pixels by 480 pixels which is sorely lacking when it comes to the larger monitors of today.  There are several alternatives, the Bigg's Wide-Screen modification below, or the two choices offered wherein BGI + TotSC can be played using the higher resolution offered by Baldur's Gate II / Throne of Bhaal (BGII + ToB).  These latter two will be discussed in another section.

    Remember, Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast was written in the days when it was likely that the largest monitor was something along the lines of 1280 pixels by 800 pixels, or near to that.  The game natively supported only 640 pixels by 480 pixels.  Even in the day it was difficult to play the game.

    Again, all is not lost.  In 2007 the Bigg released his Widescreen modification for the Infinity Engine series of games.  This is a must for any player of the IE games.  Or at least what is termed as Vanilla Baldur's Gate (VBG).  It has possibly behind the scenes been incorporated into the 2012 release of Baldur's Gate 1: Enhanced Edition.  Or at least the concept of it. The install routine of the Bigg's modification is fairly straightforward. Place it anywhere on your computer, double click on it and tell it where your Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast is installed.

    A recommendation for a minimum resolution is 1280 pixels by 800 pixels which is set up in the opening stage of the installation.  The maximum resolution, set at a later portion of the install, would be 1920 pixels by 1200 pixels.  Let the capabilities of your eyes, your monitor, and the distance you are from your monitor determine your choices.  If your monitor does offer these resolutions you might need to go a step or two further.  Using the right mouse button, click on your desktop and locate the resolution you are using.  Divide the smaller number by the larger number, giving a result of something along the lines of .625, or near to it.  Then do the math of multiplying the minimum largest X resolution times the ratio.  That will give you the smaller maximum resolution.  Plug these figures into the X and Y minimum numbers of the install routine. Do the same thing for the largest resolution.

    When it comes to the question where the install asks if you want to run the game at multiple resolutions go ahead and say yes.  Just how this impacts the game is not known to this writer.  Selecting yes does not adversely affect the game so go ahead and choose it.  The modification is not perfect, with interior locales being displayed to the upper left position, and some other minor inconsistencies, but by-and-large it is far superior to playing the game in its native screen resolution.  He, the Bigg, has done the community a great service.

  7. Multiple Monitors

    Many people nowadays use multiple monitors. It is not too infrequent that your mouse cursor will stray outside the area of the game, causing inconsistent behaviors.  Snakebite Studios has a solution in Cursor Lock.  Install it and this problem is resolved.  Since it is separate from your game install, there should be no interference.  To setup the applet for Baldur's Gate: Tales of the Sword Coast set the applet's Open Program to the Baldur.Exe file.  Set Cursor Lock's Lock Program to the BGMain2.Exe file.  This should prevent the game's cursor from going to another monitor.  A $5.00 USD donation-to-the-cause to the program's developer would not be out of the question.

    Note: As each game is played particulars as to installation issues will be posted to this article detailing any problems and the steps to overcome them.

  8. Finalizing

    Start the game and enjoy a true classic that still holds countless hours of entertainment opportunities and value.


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