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Creatures Series on Windows 8 [Tutorial]   
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/9/2013  1

[ Please view the resource for this article instead. It is much easier to follow and contains more relevant information and links. Still post here for help though, thank you! ]

I thought I'd make an in-depth step by step on how I got all of the programs to work the best they can on my Windows 8 computer. This is assuming you have a Windows 8 32-Bit system. Some of this stuff is included elsewhere, but I thought I'd include it all in one post! These methods may not work for you since Windows 8 is really messed up when it comes to old games! This is merely how I got them to work for me.

Creatures will NOT work on Windows 8 64-Bit systems. There are no other color modes other than 64-bit for these systems, as far as I know. If you are looking into getting Windows 8 [which I do not recommend as it is now] get a 32-Bit system or you will not be able to play Creatures!

Edit: Sgeo has mentioned that Docking Station does in fact work on their Windows 8 64-bit system. However, this may or may not be the case for all 64 bit systems, and it is unknown if Creatures 1, 2, or 3 will work. (Sgeo only stated they were using Docking Station) So while it seems it is possible for the Creatures Series to work with W8 64-bit systems, I will try to look into the matter and determine if all the 64-bit systems allow for 16-bit support. ...since it seems my information I received prior to writing this tutorial was a bit off regarding the Windows 8 64-bit System Emulator. Sorry if there was any confusion!


The Creatures Series should definitely work with Windows 8 64-bit systems, provided you follow the following steps. :) It seems to be working fine for Windows 8 64-bit users.

I will approach this tutorial as if you have little knowledge of computers and/or you are new to the Creatures series. :3 Bear with me computer geniuses and veteran players, I want everyone to be able to understand this tutorial!

Things you will need:
-- The Albian Years - GOG.com Version
-- Creatures 3 - Disc
-- Docking Station - From wherever you get it
-- Creatures 3 Update #2
-- Docking Station Initial Log-in Bypass
----- I do not have Creatures Exodus! I use my original C3 disc and the Docking Station download from the original site. [Or TreeSprite's website, I don't recall] Both are the same. However, my tutorial may still work for those with Exodus, it just may need to be applied a bit differently. Ask for help here, and either me, or someone else with Exodus and Windows 8 may be able to help!


Creatures 1 on Windows 8:

I have an original disc for C1, but because it is really old, it will not install the game. That being said, I am using the GOG.com version, so this tutorial is not for those with a disc.

1. Install the Albian Years.

2. Run game. Yep, that's it. Worked perfectly for me.

3. It may ask if you wish to switch to 16-Bit mode, click yes or whatever it says, because 16-bit mode is required or it will not run!


Creatures 2 on Windows 8:

Now, this one gave me some headaches. I will hopefully be making a video on how I got it to work, in case you need a visual. I will try to be as descriptive as I can, however. Again, this is using the GOG.com version since my disc does not work. The following threads here and here may help too, if my way does not work for you.

Someone I know who works with computers identified the "Black Box of Doom" as a problem with the Windows 8 emulator. If you're good with that sort of thing, why not give it a go and try to make a good workaround? :D

1. Install the Albian Years from GOG.com

2. Attempt to run Creatures 2. (in case it works for you)

3. An error more than likely should pop up, prompting you to switch to 16-bit mode. Please click to do so.

4. It should then pop up with an error, asking to "Switch to" or "Cancel" click "Switch to" until C2 starts to run.

5. Once C2 is running, you may notice a black box covering much of the screen.

6. Close C2 if you see this box.

7. Go to C2's folder in your "Program Files" section, often located at:
Drive (C: ) > Program Files (x86) > GOG.com > The Albian Years > Creatures 2

8. There should be many applications within this folder, we are concerned with two. Right click on the application titled "creatures2"

9. Click on "Properties" from the drop-down menu.

10. Select the "Compatibility" tab.

11. Underneath the "Settings" section, click the box labeled "Reduced color mode" and select "16-bit" from the drop-down box next to it.
We will NOT be running C2 in compatibility mode OR as administrator. This causes C2 to not even start. (Not sure why)

12. Click "Apply" then "OK"
Now Creatures 2 will run without prompting you to switch to 16-bit color mode, and will do so automatically.

13. Click on the application titled "launcher" within the Creatures 2 folder.

14. C2 should start, but it will still have the black box.

15. Set C2 to full screen.

16. Then, set it to Windowed mode again.

17. Move the Window (Without adjusting it's size, leave it small, it should be the same size as the black box). Move it somewhere away form the black box.

18. Click it to full screen again, then return it to windowed mode again.

19. Close C2 while it is in Windowed Mode.

20. Start C2 again (it may start with C2 minimized, so maximize it) and you should notice that the black box has moved to where you moved the windowed box to last time.

21. Drag the windowed C2 down to the very bottom of your screen, so the top bar of it is visible over your taskbar, but the game itself is below the screen where you cannot see it.

22. Full screen the game, and then window it again.

23. Close C2.

24. Run C2, and the box should be trapped off the screen where you cannot see it.

25. Enjoy playing C2! It is still slightly buggy on Windows 8, however, but at least you can see!

There have been accounts that this causes the hand to disappear, however it is not so for me. If the hand does disappear for you, I'm sorry but I cannot help you. Describe your situation to me in detail and I will attempt to offer a solution, but don't become angry with me if it does not work. I cannot fix the problem because I never encountered it. Also, thank you to smelliot for this method, I just expanded it so people could understand it better. I myself didn't get what he or she meant at first!

If you encounter any other issues, post here so I (or others) can try to help!

Creatures 2 on Windows 8 Alternate [Black Box of Doom] Fix:

When my game crashed as I was trying to remove the box from a different world using the above method (to no avail), I stumbled upon an accidental fix when trying to close C2! This is really easy to do!
Note: You will have to do this every time you play Creatures 2!
Also note that this is more likely to make the hand disappear.

1. Open Creatures 2 after completing steps 1-12 on the previous section.

2. Open a world of your choice.

3. Press CTRL + ALT + DEL

4. Click on "Task Manager"

5. The box will disappear for the current session! :D

-- Again, MUST repeat every time you play! The other method is slightly more permanent, but harder to do.

Creatures 3 on Windows 8:

Installation of this game is using my C3 disc, NOT Exodus! It worked for me very easily, and it basically has the same guidelines as Docking Station.

1. Install Creatures 3

2. Run the game. If it prompts you to go to 16-bit mode, please click to do so.

3. Enjoy Creatures 3!


Optional Steps:

-- Go to your Creatures 3 folder and select the application that launches C3. Right click on it and go to "Properties".
-- Go to the "Compatibility" tab and select the box "Reduced color mode" under the "Settings" section.
-- Select from the drop down box, "16-bit".
-- Click "Apply" then "OK" and launch C3.
-- Enjoy without being prompted to switch to 16-bit mode!

NOTE: You will need a patch for Creatures 3 to work with Docking Station. See Docking Station on Windows 8 for more information.


Docking Station on Windows 8:

This is using the original download from the Docking Station site, or the one from TreeSprites Creatures Grove. NOT Creatures Exodus!

1. Download Docking Station from either of the following links:
-- Gameware Development Most of the download links no longer work.
-- TreeSprite's Site - Little more reliable. Download the file listed as for Windows systems.

2. Install Docking Station.

3. Run Docking Station. I don't remember what pops up, but if it asks you to update DS decline! It doesn't work since gameware's site is all wonky.

4. You will be prompted to go to 16-bit color mode. Here we go again! Note: This has slightly different steps than before!

5. Go to Docking Station's folder and right click on the Launcher application. (Usually titled "Docking Station" or "engine" )

6. Click on "Properties" and go to the "Compatibility" tab.

7. This is where it gets different! Click the box under the "Compatibility mode" section, and select "Windows XP (Service Pack 2)" from the drop-down menu. This is to hopefully ensure it runs properly.
DO NOT run the compatibility troubleshooter, it is a huge waste of time!

8. Under the "Settings" section, click the box called "Reduced color mode" and select "16-bit" from the drop-down box. You will no longer be prompted to switch to 16-bit to run the game!

9. Under "Privilege level" select the box called "Run this program as an administrator" because, why not?

10. Click "Apply" then "OK".

11. You may now run Docking Station.
-- HOWEVER, you will need an initial login bypass of some sort, since you can no longer register an account with Creature Labs and play online!

12. Follow my "Bypassing the Initial Log-in of Docking Station" steps and then enjoy!


Bypassing the Initial Log-in of Docking Station:

-- Download Creatures 1 to Docking Station (C1toDS) here, the link is here on the Creatures Wiki. It comes with a built-in initial log-in bypass!
OR
-- Download an initial log-in bypass. I do not have a link to one, but if someone has it, give it to me so I can put it here. :3

-- Install either of these once you download them, and select "Play Offline" when you start Docking Station.


Getting Docking Station to work with Creatures 3:

Only look at this if you have Creatures 3 and wish to play in docked worlds. or, worlds that use both Docking Station and Creatures 3 metarooms!

1. Download the patch from TreeSprite's site here.
-- Should be called "Creatures3 Update #2"

2. Install Update

3. You can now play with docked worlds!


Enjoy playing the Creatures Series! If you have any problems list them here and we will try to help you! Visit Laura's Post for other helpful guides! Please note that all these games may still be a little buggy, since they are designed for OLD windows systems. This is to be expected an is often not fixable. But don't worry, you can still enjoy the games!

If you spot any errors in this post let me know so I can fix them! Sorry if something like this has already been posted, but I searched and did not find anything this direct to addressing possible issues on Windows 8.


~Issy [ngeek]


~Issy [ngeek]
 
kezune
Air Guitarist

kezune
United States  

 visit kezune's website: Designer Genes
  6/9/2013

This is very helpful, though I think this should also be posted to the Resources section of the site. :3

Thank you for posting this tutorial!


Designer Genes || Updates Monday through Saturday
Personal Philosophy || "It never hurt anybody to have
thick skin, a strong back and a level head."

 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/9/2013

Oops! I knew I did something wrong! XD If a mod could move it for me, please...

You're welcome! :3


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Trell
Wee Scrivener

Trell
Canada  

 visit Trell's website: TrellyOllyOxenFree
  6/9/2013

Great galloping gummy bears! [nsurprised] I'll have to try this on my sister's Windows 8!

Trell
"Holy crap in a casket!"

 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/9/2013

Let me know if you run into problems! [nsmile]

~Issy [ngeek]
 
Laura
Tea Queen

Laura
United Kingdom  
Administrator


 visit Laura's website: CC Chat
  6/9/2013

Isis wrote:
Oops! I knew I did something wrong! XD If a mod could move it for me, please...

This topic is absolutely fine in the Help forum, don't worry! Kezune was just suggesting that you could post it as a resource article too, if you wanted, because it's so helpful. Thank you for sharing this with us. :D

 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/9/2013

Oh, I will do that then, thanks! :3

It seems I skipped over the word "also" xD


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Charity

Charity
United States  


  6/9/2013

Would it work for Windows 7? I can't seem to get Creatures 1 or 2 to work on this computer...
 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/9/2013

Give it a go! Most of the steps should work with Windows 7, too.

Let me know what is happening, exactly, if it doesn't work?

I can have my sister install it on her Windows 7 too, and see what happens.


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Trell
Wee Scrivener

Trell
Canada  

 visit Trell's website: TrellyOllyOxenFree
  6/9/2013

Are you using Albian Years? If so, is it from GOG.com?

Trell
"Holy crap in a casket!"

 
Charity

Charity
United States  


  6/9/2013

I just have the disc's for Creatures 1 and 2. Is GOG.com the best way to get a working version of them?
 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/9/2013

Yes, because for some reason they will not install on Windows 8 using a disc, and I tried to do it when I had Windows 7, with no luck either.

There may be a way, but I never figured it out. :/


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Jessica

Jessica
United States  

 visit Jessica's website: Discover Albia
  6/9/2013  2

I was able to get Creatures 1 running on Windows Vista from the original disc, but I had no luck with C1 nor C2 in Windows 7. The GOG.com version is definitely your best bet: Reasonable price for a DRM-free copy! I keep waiting for a sale, because last year they had the Creatures games 40%-60% off every few months. Hopefully the games will be featured as a discounted item one of these days!

Discover Albia

 
Trell
Wee Scrivener

Trell
Canada  

 visit Trell's website: TrellyOllyOxenFree
  6/12/2013

So far so good, C2 is running on her computer! It runs a little slow, but otherwise okay so far!

Trell
"Holy crap in a casket!"

 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/12/2013

The box give you any trouble? :o

~Issy [ngeek]
 
Trell
Wee Scrivener

Trell
Canada  

 visit Trell's website: TrellyOllyOxenFree
  6/12/2013

Oh yeah, we had that big black box take up nearly all of the screen, but your fix has fixed it so far. :) Unfortunately due to an unrelated problem, now we can't open Firefox, so she's on mum's computer for now. XD

Trell
"Holy crap in a casket!"

 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/12/2013

Ah xD

Out of curiosity, is the world you fixed the black box for one you created? So far I can only get the fix to work for the default world called 'World' . It wont work for my other one. I'm wondering if you need to not have any norns in the world, for it to work... I need to test this. :o


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Trell
Wee Scrivener

Trell
Canada  

 visit Trell's website: TrellyOllyOxenFree
  6/12/2013

It's just the 'World' one. She's got Norns in it, but she can't import/export.

Trell
"Holy crap in a casket!"

 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/12/2013

Did she put the norns in after she moved the box? Or before?

Edit: It seems it will not work for any of my worlds that don't have the word "World" in it. I made another titled "World2" and the box never appeared. I made another titled "Albia", and the box appeared and would not go away. o.O


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Trell
Wee Scrivener

Trell
Canada  

 visit Trell's website: TrellyOllyOxenFree
  6/12/2013

She put the Norns in after.

Trell
"Holy crap in a casket!"

 
mfb

mfb
United States  

 visit mfb's website: Shee Tea Shop
  6/13/2013

I see Windows is trying to go the direction of OSX with the whole color depth thing... 'sure, let's make it impossible to switch to a lower color depth, this will never be a problem to anyone ever' ... I'm glad you managed to find a workaround for some users at least :)

Shee Tea Shop
 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  6/13/2013  1

Haha yeah, microsoft has been a real pain lately... it's like someome stood up and said, "Hey! I know guys, lets make an OS that is TOTALLY different from the last one to confuse everyone, and make it impossible for people to play their favorite, old, and classic games! Also, we should totally downgrade the Xbox 360 and call it Xbox One, cause we are so original! We gotta make sure its features are totally garbage and make every gamer angry!"

....

Also, thank you. xD


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Sgeo

Sgeo



  7/8/2013

For what it's worth, I just got a Windows 8 64-bit machine, and Docking Station seems like it's working fine, I just had to set compatibility mode 16-bit color. Didn't apply the login disabler just yet though.

Neurogengineer and founder of the Creatures Wiki.
 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  7/20/2013

Hmm interesting, I've heard that all the Windows 64-bit systems cannot go any lower than 64-bit. I guess some can. :o

If someone can update the resource for me then? Thanks! Just say that some 64 bit systems might run the Creatures series, since I'm not certain this is true for all 64 bit systems. ^^

Also, really late reply!


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Jacob

Jacob
United Kingdom  


  7/22/2013

popping in to say i have installed both c1 and c2 (gog albian years release) on my windows 8 64 bit system and it runs fine. sounds like issues may be a little more localised than operating system.

Not really active around these parts anymore.
 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  7/25/2013

Hmm, interesting. Seems the people I got the info from didn't know much of what they were talking about. xD

I guess they figured other color modes didn't exist since you cannot directly change in to a different color mode via Properties on the desktop, but you can set it to 16-bit for the specific program. This is how it is for my 32-bit system, and I guess no one tried to even get it into a different color mode in a different way with the 64-bit system and assumed the worst... ah well, at least we know now?

Thanks for the info! :3



~Issy [ngeek]
 
Sgeo

Sgeo



  7/26/2013  1

There's also the fact that there are two things that "16-bit" might mean. 16-bit generally means executing code, that assumes that every memory address can fit in 16 bits. This is what Windows 8 64-bit generally doesn't support. But 16-bit color is an entirely distinct thing from that sort of 16-bit. At least Docking Station is 32-bit execution, but needs 16-bit color. Windows 8 64-bit can run 32-bit execution programs just fine (that's what Program Files (x86) is all about)

Neurogengineer and founder of the Creatures Wiki.
 
autogatos

autogatos
United States  

 visit autogatos's website: Art Blog
  8/2/2013

Popping in here to say I also got Exodus (so far I've only tried DS, not C3 standalone) to run in Windows 8 64-bit (on a Microsoft Surface Pro).

I followed all of Isis' instructions and they worked perfectly! Very important to not skip any steps. I had originally not installed Update #2 because I assumed it was included in the GOG version, but the game would not run with a docked world until I did.

As Isis said, as far as I know Windows 8 64-bit doesn't have a display option to switch to 16-bit color, but it does have the option to run a specific program in 16-bit color in the compatibility settings for that program, and it seems to be working just fine so far! :)

 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  8/2/2013

Thank you! Glad to know this is helping people!

Thanks for the information, too. I'm thinking it must be like my 32-bit system then. The way people were talking about the 64-bit systems made it seem like there was absolutely no way to go to any lower bit settings. Which seemed entirely possible given Mircrosoft's recent ideas... [in regards to Xbox One not being able to play 360 or original Xbox games... and not being able to lend games to someone <.< ]

If someone could totally omit the portion within the resource regarding possible 64-bit compatibility issues for me, that would be great! Thanks!


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Trell
Wee Scrivener

Trell
Canada  

 visit Trell's website: TrellyOllyOxenFree
  8/2/2013

Haven's somehow got C2 working on her Windows 8 now. She went through all the steps before, but it never worked as well as it did today. She made a new world by the name of "test" and it's working wonderfully. She can export creatures, but still has some difficulties importing because the window for importing flashes something awful. It's possible, but difficult.

Trell
"Holy crap in a casket!"

 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  8/2/2013

Yeah there seems to be a problem with things like that in the game, try moving the window for importing up to the top left corner of the game, where the taskbar of sorts is. It seems to stabilize the flashing of windows within the game. I've made a habit of moving all my windows within C2 to the top corner in order to view and use them.

Hovering over items in the game is also glitchy, when it comes up with that little thing that says what the item is in norn language. That also flickers so it is rather hard to read.


~Issy [ngeek]
 
Trell
Wee Scrivener

Trell
Canada  

 visit Trell's website: TrellyOllyOxenFree
  8/2/2013

Good to know. Now her object injector applet isn't working. :\

Trell
"Holy crap in a casket!"

 
Issy

Issy

Moderator


 visit Issy's website: Quasarian Curiosities
  8/2/2013

Hmm, let me run C2 and see if mine works.

~Issy [ngeek]
 


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