First it has to be manually installed from CD. Copy the ROGUE directory to your hard disk. Then copy ROGUE.EXE from the root of the CD into the same folder. Finally grab the three DSETUP .dll files from INSTALL (along with any .txt and .doc files you want) and also put them in ROGUE. If you had placed the ROGUE folder in C:\Games then your directory structure would look like this:
Now you need the registry entries. Copy the following into Notepad and save it as “rogue.reg”, after you edit the file paths as appropriate:
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\LucasArts Entertainment Company LLC\Rogue Squadron\v1.0]
“VDEVICE”=”Primary Display Driver”
Due to 64 bit registry redirection you’ll need to use the 32-bit version of regedit to import rogue.reg. It can be started from a “Run” box with the command %SystemRoot%\SysWOW64\regedit.exe . Just drag and drop rogue.reg into the Registry Editor window.
Now that the game is installed, let’s talk about the problems I ran into while playing. First off, having a Gamepad plugged in may inhibit the mouse or keyboard (especially the enter key). At the main menu there’s not much you can do, short of applying MS ACT fix “EmulateUser”. Once in game, however, the Joystick can be disabled by pressing “Control + J”. On an older ATI chipset I found the game worked much better when the desktop color depth was 16-bits. I did not find that I had to set any compatibility modes for the game, though Windows seems to automatically disable visual themes.
For gameplay, your best bet is to find a 1.3 version CD of the game (there is no patch to update 1.2 to 1.3) as it seems less restrictive on hardware/video modes and may have been tweaked to run under DirectX6 instead of 5. There is an XP crashfix for the 1.3 version of “Rogue Squadron.EXE” floating around and it seems to work fairly well. In Windows 7 I didn’t have the game crash as often as other people have reported. In XP the game crashed just as often as reported and the patch seemed to work very well.
Now I like to play my games windowed and D3DWindower is an excellent program to do this. One thing that made it shine on XP was the “Emulation” mode. Essentially, once you started the emulation, D3DWindower would monitor for any of your games to be launched, and instantly force it into a window. Unfortunately Emulation no longer works in Windows 7 (it can’t capture the game window when it runs). When you launch “Rogue Squadron.EXE” from D3DWindower, the first thing that pops up is the launcher “Rogue.exe”. As a result D3DWindower ends up trying to put “Rogue.exe” into a window instead of “Rogue Squadron.EXE”. Simply renaming “Rogue.exe” to something else resolves the issue to a certain degree; now the launcher won’t pop up but apparently it has to in order for the joystick to work. I wasn’t too happy with the joystick setup anyway (I wanted to map more functions to my XBOX 360 Wireless controller), so I used Xpadder to set up a keyboard emulation profile.
It seems like a lot of trouble to go through for such an old game, but it’s a classic.
I’ve received more replies about this post than any of my others so I’m inclined to write a few more words. I cannot guarantee anything with regard to this game! It may or may not work on a modern computer and there are far too many variables involved, not least of which are your processor speed, operating system, and video card drivers. If this post helped you in any way then I am glad but there’s a good chance the game will still not load or be unplayable.