Homeworld: Cataclysm

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Homeworld: Cataclysm
Homeworld: Cataclysm cover
Barking Dog Studios
Sierra Entertainment
Release dates
Windows September 12, 2000
Metacritic 89
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Bird's-eye view
Controls Multiple select, Point and select
Genres RTS
Themes Sci-fi, Space
Series Homeworld
Homeworld: Cataclysm on HowLongToBeat
Homeworld: Cataclysm on IGDB
Homeworld: Cataclysm guide on StrategyWiki
Homeworld: Cataclysm on MobyGames
Homeworld: Cataclysm on Wikipedia
Homeworld 1999
Homeworld: Cataclysm 2000
Homeworld 2 2003
Homeworld Remastered Edition 2015
Homeworld 2 Remastered Edition 2015
Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak 2016

Key points

Re-released on GOG.com as Homeworld: Emergence due to "Cataclysm" being a registered trademark of Blizzard Entertainment.[1]

General information

Homeworld Shipyards - A fairly old but big Homeworld fan site
GOG.com Support Page


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
CD key
SecuROM 4 DRM.

Essential improvements[edit]


A full list of all available patches can be found here.

Skip intro videos[edit]

Delete intro videos[2]
  1. Navigate to <path-to-game>\Movies
  2. Delete or rename the following files:
  • sierra.bik (Sierra logo)
  • bdogintro.bik (Barking Dog Studios logo)
Use the launch argument /disableAVI[2]


Despite the name of the parameter, mission briefing cutscenes are still functional while using this method.

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Sierra On-Line\Cataclysm[Note 1]

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\SavedGames[Note 2]
Separate folders are used to store Singleplayer saves, Multiplayer saves, Recorded games (replays), and saves from the Training mode.

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

System Native Notes
GOG Galaxy


Video settings.
Video settings.
Effects settings.
Effects settings.

Graphics feature State Notes
Widescreen resolution
See Widescreen resolution.
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
Determined by the aspect ratio. See Widescreen resolution).
See Windowed.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See Windowed.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Use the command line parameter /triple
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
No frame rate cap. Ships and other elements move and update at a locked framerate.

Widescreen resolution[edit]

Modify the game registry keys[3]
  1. Navigate to the Configuration file(s) location using RegEdit.
  2. Change the ScreenHeight and ScreenWidth registry keys to the desired width and height.


On 64-bit versions of Windows, the configuration files may be in a different location if the game is not run in Administrator Mode.
See the Game data article or the Configuration file(s) location tooltips and notes for more information.


Use launch arguments
  • For Windowed mode, Use the launch argument -window.
  • For Borderless fullscreen windowed mode, use -window -noBorder.


For standard windowed mode, the game must be set to less than the screen resolution. Otherwise, the game will crash.
Alternatively, use the borderless command.


Gameplay settings.
Gameplay settings.

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


Audio settings.
Audio settings.

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Retail only


Multiplayer types

Type Native Notes
LAN play
Online play

Connection types

Issues fixed[edit]

Black screen/game window not appearing in GOG.com Re-release[edit]

Some users may find that the game window will stop rendering correctly as the video intros end, with only the desktop visible as the menu is supposed to appear.
The issue appears to be an incompatibility with nGlide.[4]
Remove and/or replace nGlide[4]
  1. Remove or move the following files:
  • glide.dll, glide2x.dll, and glide3x.dll (nGlide related DLLs)
  • nglide_config.exe (nGlide configurator)
  • 3Dfx (folder, contains a DLL that links 3DFX OpenGL support to nGlide)
Optionally, the following files can be removed as well:
  • nglide_readme.txt (readme file for nGlide)
  • 3DfxSpl.dll, 3DfxSpl2.dll, and 3DfxSpl3.dll (3DFX animated splash screens)


After removing these files, the game may default to Software mode. This can be changed in options. The OpenGL renderer(s) are recommended.
3DFX-enhanced OpenGL mode may be unusable after applying this fix. If desired, it can be restored using dgVoodoo 2; otherwise, standard OpenGL will still be available.

Severe Lag in Menus[edit]

Use OpenGL rendering[citation needed]
Set launch arguments

Run the game with the following launch arguments: /nofastfe /noglddraw

Enabling OpenGL rendering on Windows 8 and later[edit]

OpenGL rendering can solve severe lag problems in menus. However, NT4 compatibility mode is required.
NT4 compatibility mode is no longer offered by default for Windows 8 and 10.
Restoring NT4 Compatibility Mode
  1. Download the Homeworld hardware acceleration fix to apply NT4 compatibility mode.
  2. Download the zip file and extract its contents.
  3. Follow the instructions in the readme.txt file.

Game runs on wrong screen (multi-monitor setup)[edit]

Use Windows key shortcuts to move the window

Use Win+ Shift+ or Win+ Shift+ to move the game to another window.


This may cause the game window to render incorrectly/off-center from the screen, or cause the mouse cursor to be caged to the wrong monitor.
Pressing Alt+Tab and returning to the game should fix mouse cursor bugs.
Change resolutions once to fix off-center screens.
This fix should only be necessary once.

Other information[edit]

Command line parameters[edit]

The following command-line parameters may improve quality on newer systems, or enable extra functionality:
Parameter Description
/triple Enables OpenGL triple buffering, improves graphical quality and removes flickering at higher resolutions. Use unless it causes problems.
/enable3DNow Enables the 3DNow processor instruction set if available. Use unless it causes problems.
/enableSSE Enables the SSE processor instruction set if available. Use unless it causes problems.
/disableAVI Disables the intro movies when the game starts.
/nofastfe Disables the fast graphical frontend. Use this only when having graphical problems like flickering
/noglddraw Don't use DirectDraw to setup OpenGL renderers. Try this is you're having problems getting OpenGL to work.
/safeGL Don't use possibly buggy optimized features of OpenGL for rendering. Try this if you're having problems getting OpenGL to work.
/heap BYTES Allows the game to use up to BYTES bytes RAM for the heap since by default the game isn't allowed to use much. 256 MB should suffice: /heap 268435456 but if you have more, try raising it to 1 GB: /heap 1073741824


Technical specs Supported Notes
OpenGL 1.1
Software renderer
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes


Middleware Notes
Cutscenes Bink
Multiplayer Sierra.com, WON

System requirements[edit]

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 95, NT 4.0
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium II 233 MHz
System memory (RAM) 32 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 80 MB
Video card (GPU) 4 MB of VRAM


  1. When running this game without Administrator elevation, 32-bit programs writing to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE will be redirected to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\VirtualStore\MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node (more details).
  2. 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).


  1. Release: Homeworld: Emergence - GOG.com
  2. 2.0 2.1 Verified by User:Cptmold on 2019-07-17
    Intro-skip methods were tested with the GOG release.
  3. Reference
  4. 4.0 4.1 Verified by User:Cptmold on 2019-07-17
    Method detailed in fixbox was used to fix the game failing to render correctly outside of video intros.