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Space Quest 4 Fixes > This page contains hints and tips to run Space Quest on modern computers. It also contains information how to optimize the game and discusses various problems.

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Space Quest 4 Fixes

Just use ScummVM?

ScummVM now supports all versions of Space Quest IV (not counting fan patches, like the NewRisingSun patch). This fixes all known timer bugs.


Problems running SQ4 on Windows 2000, ME, NT and XP?

If you're having problems running Space Quest 4 on a modern computer, try DOSBox. It's a program that emulates the DOS environment.


Sound Tips

On modern computers running NT-based Windows versions (2000, ME, NT and XP), it's likely you run into many different sound problems. A program called VDMSound might be able to fix 99% of these problems. It emulates the good old sound blaster card, which is perfect for the Space Quest games. VDMSound is free to use, so download a copy and give it a try.

If you think your Windows version of SQ4 has messed up music, go into your SQ4 windows directory and look for the file called "sierra.ini". Open it with Notepad. There should be a line in there that says "synthtype=basesynth". Change "basesynth" to "highsynth". Save the file, and your music in SQ4 Windows will be fixed.

You'll probably get much better sound if you change the sound driver of SQ4 to General MIDI. Make sure when you run install.exe that General MIDI is selected.


Whatever sound setting I use during INSTALL, the sound only works through the internal speakers.

Apply the GoSierra patch and follow the instructions. You should then be able to run SNDBLAST.DRV.


I only see a black screen with a few pixels here and there, unless I maximize the window! The backgrounds don't display at all, unless an object (such as Roger) moves over it.

In Windows, right click on the desktop and click properties. Set the screen resolution to 640 X 480 pixels and the color settings to 256. Click OK and run the game again. For optimal results, make sure the refresh rate of your monitor while running 640 x 480 pixels is at 85Hz or higher. You can change the refresh rate of your monitor in the Monitor tab of the Display Properties.

But your computer doesn't offer anything less than 16-bit colors! What to do? For some reason, XP hides the older, seldom-used combinations deeply. Go to Control Panel > Display > Settings > Advanced > Adaptor > List All Modes. Select 640 x 480 256 colors @ 85 Hz. In Windows 2000 go to Control Panel > Display > Settings > Advanced Settings.


992.v56 not found or 993.V56 not found Fix

The disk version of SQ4 must be run using the SQ4.BAT file that comes with the game. If you don't, the game will not find certain files, like VIEW.993 (it will look for 993.v56 insted) or SCRIPT.541. If you want to run SCIDHUV, enter "SCIDHUV -N" in the DOS prompt.

Keep in mind that running the game the correct way will invalidate those saved games saved when running the game the incorrect way (which is running SCIDHUV.EXE directly without the -N option).


Format Countdown Fix

The Format Countdown sequence might be impossible to finish on faster computers while playing the disk version of Space Quest 4. However, this is not a timer bug and can easily be fixed. As soon as you see the Windows-like computer screen (with the brain icon and stuff), enter the control panel of the game (move your mouse to the top of the screen) and adjust the speed slider. The Format Countdown runs "unthrottled" while Roger is looking at the computer screen of the Programing Chamber. It runs normal again as soon as you leave the computer screen. It seems that the game, for whatever reason, temporarily sets speed to "unthrottled".
All original content (c) 2018 Brandon Blume & Troels Pleimert. All Space Quest related material (c) by Sierra Entertainment.