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Difference between revisions of "Sid Meier's Civilization III"

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
(→‎API: It's not even a 3D game.)
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|online play players  = 8
|online play players  = 8
|online play modes    = Versus
|online play modes    = Versus
|online play notes    = The official [[GameSpy]] service has been shut down; Steam version has been updated with Steamworks support.<ref name="Steamworks"/><ref>[ 2K Online Server Migration from GameSpy Technology – 2K Support]</ref>
|online play notes    = The official [[GameSpy]] service has been shut down; Steam version has been updated with Steamworks support.<ref name="Steamworks">[ Civilization III Multiplayer Update Now Available Steam Community :: Group Announcements :: Sid Meier's Civilization III: Complete]</ref><ref>[ 2K Online Server Migration from GameSpy Technology – 2K Support]</ref>
|asynchronous        = true
|asynchronous        = true
|asynchronous notes  = Possible option. Used by default.
|asynchronous notes  = Possible option. Used by default.

Revision as of 12:28, 9 December 2022

Sid Meier's Civilization III
Sid Meier's Civilization III cover
Firaxis Games
Conquests expansion BreakAway Games
Mac OS (Classic) Westlake Interactive
macOS (OS X) Westlake Interactive
2001-2003 Infogrames
2003-2005 Atari
2005-present 2K Games
Re-release Sold Out Software
Mac OS Aspyr Media
macOS (OS X) Aspyr Media
Release dates
Windows October 30, 2001
Mac OS (Classic) October 30, 2001
macOS (OS X) January 12, 2006
Metacritic 90
Monetization One-time game purchase, Expansion pack
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Turn-based
Perspectives Bird's-eye view, Isometric
Controls Point and select
Genres 4X, TBS
Themes Historical
Series Civilization
Sid Meier's Civilization III on HowLongToBeat
Sid Meier's Civilization III on IGDB
Sid Meier's Civilization III guide on StrategyWiki
Sid Meier's Civilization III on MobyGames
Sid Meier's Civilization III on Wikipedia
Sid Meier's Civilization 1991
Freeciv (unofficial) 1996
Sid Meier's Civilization II 1996
Civilization II: Test of Time 1999
Sid Meier's Civilization III 2001
Sid Meier's Civilization IV 2005
CivCity: Rome 2006
Sid Meier's Civilization IV: Colonization 2008
Sid Meier's Civilization V 2010
Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth 2014
Sid Meier's Civilization VI 2016


GameSpy online services have been shut down (see Network for solutions).

General information

Civilization Wiki - A detailed wiki for all Civilization games and their spin offs
Apolyton Civilization Site's Civ III section - A huge forum dedicated to all Civilization games and their spin offs. Modifications for the game can be found here
Civilization Fanatics Center's Civilization III Page Community Discussions for game series Support Page
Steam Community Discussions


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
Disc check, although the DRM depends on the region:
North American versions use SecuROM DRM
European versions use SafeDisc V2 DRM[Note 1]
Mac OS
Gamesplanet logo.svg
Icon overlay.png
Green Man Gaming
Icon overlay.png
Icon overlay.png
GamersGate (unavailable)
Icon overlay.png
SafeDisc retail DRM does not work on Windows Vista and later (see above for affected versions).
A free trial version of the Gold Edition is available from GameFront.

Version differences

The Game of the Year Edition contains the base game with a bonus CD containing additional maps and behind-the-scenes videos.
The Gold Edition contains the base game and Play The World.
Civilization III Complete is a complete version with both expansion packs.
Digital releases omit the executables for the base game and Play the World, leaving only the Conquests executable with a Complete-themed menu and icon. The base game and Play the World can, however, be played by including no-CD versions of their respective fully patched executables, as no other assets are missing.


Type Notes
Expansion pack Expansion packs include multiple civilizations, scenarios, and secondary game modes. Unlike the base game, they include multiplayer support.
One-time game purchase The game requires an upfront purchase to access.

DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
Play the World
Conquests Contains all content from Play the World.

Essential improvements


v1.29f (base game), v1.27f (Play the World), v1.22 (Conquests) are available here.
Patch v1.22 Rev A is the latest patch for the OS X version.[3]


fan patch v8 - Multiple fixes to v1.22 Conquests.
flintlock's patch - Multiple bugfixes and QoL improvements to v1.22 Conquests (GOG/Steam version only), more stable than the fan patch above.
Fitted Irrigation with Farm Houses - Makes irrigation look more natural and not jut out into the water.
River Deltas - Covers up the problem where some deltas are too far out to sea and others are too recessed
Fixed Transport Window Leftovers - Fixes left over artifacts from the transport window

Skip intro videos

Edit configuration file[4]
  1. Open the configuration file.
  2. Add the following line at the end of the file: PlayIntro=0.
  3. Save your changes.

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

The configuration file is generated only after the first time the game is started.
System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\Civilization3.ini
[Note 2]
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X)
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/3910/pfx/[Note 3]

Save game data location

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\Saves
[Note 2]
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X)
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/3910/pfx/[Note 3]

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
GOG Galaxy
Steam Cloud


In-game options menu.
In-game options menu.

Widescreen resolution

Set KeepRes mode[5]
  1. Open the configuration file.
  2. Add the line KeepRes=1
  3. Save your changes. The game will now run at the desktop resolution as borderless fullscreen.



Set windowed mode[6]
  1. Open the configuration file.
  2. Add the line KeepRes=1
  3. Add the line Video Mode=1152
  4. Save your changes.
Video Mode is the horizontal window size, with the vertical height calculated based on the 4:3 aspect ratio.
The game window will have no border.
The game area can't be resized after the game is launched - doing so causes graphic corruption and may crash the game.


Keyboard and mouse State Notes
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Mouse acceleration
Uses OS cursor.
Mouse sensitivity
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller support


Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
No spoken text.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Royalty free audio


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Retail only.
Retail only; download for digital versions
Fan translation, link #1, link #2.
Retail only.
Retail only
Retail only, download.


Either expansion pack is required, as the base game does not have multiplayer support.

Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
Local play
8 Hot seat
LAN play
8 Versus
Removed from Steam version after the Steamworks update.
Online play
8 Versus
The official GameSpy service has been shut down; Steam version has been updated with Steamworks support.[7][8]
Asynchronous multiplayer
Possible option. Used by default.

Connection types

Type Native Notes
Direct IP
Removed from the Steam version.[7]


Protocol Port(s) and/or port range(s)
TCP 3783, 6500, 6667, 28900, 29900, 29901
UDP 2302-2400, 6500, 6515, 13139, 27900
Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) support status is unknown.

Issues fixed

Compatibility settings

Issues with the Steam version of the game may be corrected with compatibility settings. Go to <path-to-game>\Conquests\ and right click on Civ3Conquests.exe. Select properties and set the compatibility settings for Windows XP SP2.[citation needed]

No music or sound effects during diplomacy

This is an error caused by a Windows 10 update limiting sound to two channels.

Install IndirectSound[9][10]
  1. Download and extract IndirectSound.
  2. Copy the two files, dsound.dll and dsound.ini.
  3. Paste into <path-to-game>\Conquests\.

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
OpenGL 1
ExecutablePPC 32-bit 64-bit Notes
macOS (OS X)
Install the version 1.22 Rev A patch for Intel support.


Middleware Notes
Audio Miles Sound System
Cutscenes Bink Video
Multiplayer GameSpy Removed in Steam update.

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 98
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium II 400 MHz
System memory (RAM) 32 MB (base game), 128 MB (Conquests)
Hard disk drive (HDD) 1.8 GB
Video card (GPU) DirectX 8.0a (base game), 9.0b (Conquests) compatible


  1. SafeDisc retail DRM does not work on Windows 10[1] or Windows 11 and is disabled by default on Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1 when the KB3086255 update is installed.[2]
  2. 2.0 2.1 When running this game without elevated privileges (Run as administrator option), write operations against a location below %PROGRAMFILES%, %PROGRAMDATA%, or %WINDIR% might be redirected to %LOCALAPPDATA%\VirtualStore on Windows Vista and later (more details).
  3. 3.0 3.1 File/folder structure within this directory reflects the path(s) listed for Windows and/or Steam game data (use Wine regedit to access Windows registry paths). Games with Steam Cloud support may store data in ~/.steam/steam/userdata/<user-id>/3910/ in addition to or instead of this directory. The app ID (3910) may differ in some cases. Treat backslashes as forward slashes. See the glossary page for details.