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Before Buying any Game...
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Thread: Before Buying any Game...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Computer Game Help


    How many times have you seen an advert for a brilliant game like Call of Duty, Doom3 or Far Cry and gone and bought it only to discover it won't work on your system even though the manual says you have the recommended specifications? Look no further, I have the answer.

    Checking my System Specification before purchase

    The DirectX Diagnostic Tool can provide you with information about your system specification if you are unsure of your PC's current specification.

    To run the DirectX diagnostic Tool, click onto Start and select Run. In the Open box type dxdiag. The DirectX Diagnostic Tool appears.

    Your system specification can be found in the System Information box and details about your video and sound card can be found under the Display and Sound tabs.

    Minium Specification for quality games coming out between January 2005-June 2005
    • Windows XP, Windows ME, Windows 98 or Windows 95 (Windows 2000/NT are usually not supported)
    • 2.0Ghz Speed Processor
    • 128/512 MB RAM
    • 8x CD-ROM/DVD-ROM drive
    • 800 MB free hard disk space plus space for saved games and DirectX installation
    • 64/128 MB OpenGL capable video card using an Nvidia/ATI or PowerVR Kyro chipset with OpenGL and DirectX 9.0 compatible driver.
    • DirectX 9.0 compatible driver
    • Keyboard
    • Mouse
    • Any form of monitor running on a minimum colour quality of 16 bits and 960x600 resolution.
    Recommended specification
    • 3.0Ghz Speed Processor.
    • 128/256 MB or greater supported OpenGL capable video card with OpenGL and DirectX 9.0 compatible driver.
    • 512mb/1024mb R.A.M
    • All of the above in Minimum Specifications.
    Clean up your system before running the game

    Before you install any software, it is critical that your hard drive be in optimum working order. I recommend that you get into the habit of performing regular ''House keeping'' on your PC. ScanDisk, Disk Defragmenter and Disk Cleanup are the tools that you need to keep today's games running as smoothly as possible.

    ScanDisk (Win 98/ME)/Error Checking (Win 2000/XP) detects and repairs disk errors and bad sectors on your hard disk drive.

    Location - 98/ME Start->Programs->Accessories->System Tools->Scan Disk. XP - My Computer->Right Click C:\ Drive->Properties->Tools Tab->Error-Checking. Note: In XP it may ask you to run after a restart. This facility is very useful. Take advantage of it because it is completed 100% of the time and is finished in 5 minutes.

    Disk Defragmenter ensures that your data on your hard disk drive is organised properly. This helps to prevent corrupt data and speeds up the accessing of this data by your PC.

    Location - (All Windows Operating Systems) Start->Programs->Accessories->System Tools->Disk Defragmentation.

    Disk Cleanup helps you to clear the files from your system that are not needed. This frees up disk space and prevents conflicts that could stop the game from installing correctly.

    Location (All Windows Operating Systems) Start->Programs->Accessories->System Tools->Disk Cleanup.


    DirectX is part of Windows 98, 2000, ME and XP. It allows Windows to access certain parts of your PC at high speed, to allow you to run today's games. As new technology is introduced, DirectX introduces a newer version, allowing you to play the games at optimum performance. DirectX 9.0 is needed to install and play todays games at the highest possible quality. With the game you should find an installer for the latest DirectX drivers. Visit http://www.microsoft.com/directx for the lastest drivers. The latest version to-date (17/02/05) is DirectX 9.0c

    OpenGL & Video Card Drivers

    Visit the website for the company that created your video card. Use the DirectX Diagnostic tool to locate the name be it Nvidia, Ati or otherwise. Go to a search engine like Google (www.google.co.uk) or MSN Search (www.msn.co.uk) and search the name of the company. Locate the company websites Download section and find driver updates. I recommend checking the updates once a month.

    Before starting your game

    In some cases, programs that are running on your system can monopolise resources that the game needs to function correctly. These are called background tasks. To close down background tasks for:

    Windows 98/ME: Hold down CTRL, ALT and DELETE once. The window will appear and you can choose to End Task. Note: You can close all programs apart from Explorer and Systray.

    Windows XP Home + Pro: Hold down CTRL and ALT on your keyboard and press DELETE once. The Windows Task Manger appears. You can also End Task anything there apart from Explorer and Systray as these programs are required for your system to run properly.

    Anti-Virus/Crash Guard Programs

    If your system is running Anti-Virus or Crash Guard Software, you are advised to close or disable them before running the game as they may be taking up precious game resources. If you are confident that your computer is fast enough to cope with the Anti-Virus or Crash Guard software on while playing the game then leave them as they are. If you are playing Single-player offline I recommend disconnecting from the Internet and disabling anti-virus programs until you've finished playing. If you play multiplayer online, make sure you anti-virus or firewall allows the game to connect to the Internet servers that you play on.


    If you experience others issues when the game has started I recommend you use a search engine or the game manual to locate the games website. You can download critical updates to play online or fix glitches within the game. If you need anymore help contact venus@hotmail.co.uk and I'd be glad to help you out! Which way did you come in?

    'Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear - not absence of fear'

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Toronto, Canada
    Excellent guide, this topic should be pinned. I've been a target of this situation many times but that was a long time ago. Now I have the system good enough for any game, that's the only way around this situation.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    good guide well done on that
    kep these guides up your making
    thanks again

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