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Prototype

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games

Not to be confused with The Prototype.

Prototype
Prototype cover
Developers
Radical Entertainment
Publishers
Activision
Russia 1C-SoftClub
Engines
Titanium
Release dates
Windows June 9, 2009
Taxonomy
Monetization One-time game purchase
Modes Singleplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Third-person
Controls Direct control
Genres Action, Brawler, Open world, Shooter
Vehicles Helicopter, Tank
Art styles Realistic
Themes Contemporary
Series Prototype
Prototype guide on StrategyWiki
Prototype on MobyGames
Prototype on Wikipedia
Prototype
Prototype 2009
Prototype 2 2012

Key points

The PC port suffers from a number of technical issues and engine-limitations. See Essential improvements.
Bloom post-processing effect is slightly toned down compared to the console version.[1]

General information

Prototype Wiki
Steam Community Discussions

Availability

Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Retail
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
SecuROM 7 DRM.
Windows
Steam
Icon overlay.png
Not available in Germany.
Windows
Humble Store (unavailable)
Icon overlay.png
Windows
Amazon.com (unavailable)
Icon overlay.png
Windows
Games for Windows Marketplace (unavailable)
Icon overlay.png
[2]
Windows

Essential improvements

Prototype Fix Patch

A mod that includes patches for several of the problems with the PC version mentioned in this article:
  • Prevents crashes on machines with many cores and threads.
  • Fixes framerate-related problems caused by game trying to poll every DirectInput/HID device.
  • Includes WSGF's resolution fix, running the game at the display's native resolution with higher FOV.
  • Fixes crashes after loading save file due to billboard advertisement server no longer being active.
  • Can reduce frame-doubling and fixes mouse input issues at framerates higher than 60FPS by removing tick rate limit.
  • Fixes broken VRAM calculation on newer cards, allowing 4xMSAA option to be selectable again.
  • Optionally allows increased shadow map resolution, up to 8192x8192.

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\Prototype\profile.bin
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/10150/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game data location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\Prototype\slot-*.bin
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/10150/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
OneDrive
Requires enabling backup of the Documents folder in OneDrive on all computers.
Steam Cloud

Video

Video settings.
Video settings.

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
See Widescreen resolution and Essential improvements.
Multi-monitor
See Widescreen resolution and Essential improvements.
Ultra-widescreen
See Widescreen resolution and Essential improvements.
4K Ultra HD
See Widescreen resolution and Essential improvements.
Field of view (FOV)
See Widescreen resolution and Essential improvements.
Windowed
See Windowed.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See Windowed.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Force through GPU control panel. Will not function if DXVK is used; download DXVK.CONF and uncomment d3d9.samplerAnisotropy and set it to desired value (e.g. 16).
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Off, 2X and 4X MSAA. 4X option only available for GPUs with a maximum of 2GB VRAM. See Essential improvements for a fix.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Double Buffered.
60 FPS
120+ FPS
See Run the game at screen refresh rate. Frame rate is capped at 500 FPS, with a 66.666 FPS internal tick rate (update rate) and will duplicate previous frames to achieve higher values; only the mouse cursor, the map and its navigation icon (regardless of it being controlled by either mouse or controller) updates above that. Mouse controls won't work properly above the internal tick rate. See Update rate limit, Frame rate limit and Low frame rate for a fix. Regardless of this fix being applied and only when using the mouse, the scrolling speed of the map will increase at higher rates; a toggleable, temporary FPS limiter is recommended in these instances.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
See the glossary page for potential alternatives.

Widescreen resolution

Some resolutions may not be supported on newer video cards.
Install Prototype Fix Patch[3]

Notes

Afterwards, if further changes to the FOV are desired, use a hex editor (such as https://hexed.it/) and go to the offsets 0x00DEA1CA and 0x00E6DE6E and change the the highlighted 2-digit value; decreasing it will increase game's FOV (for example, the three provided FOV values in the patch are E3 for the "original FOV", AA for "higher FOV" and 90 for "even higher FOV").
This forces the game to run at the display's native resolution; other resolution options will not be available.
Enable windowed mode temporarily to set desired resolution[4]
  1. Launch the game with the command line argument windowed.
  2. Change the desired resolution in the Video settings of the game, and then close the game.
  3. Re-launch the game without the windowed command line parameter and it should run at the chosen resolution in the previous step.
Force the game to run at a higher internal resolution through dgVoodoo 2[citation needed]

Windowed

Use windowed command line argument

Input

Keyboard and mouse State Notes
Remapping
Mouse acceleration
Positive mouse acceleration present.
Mouse sensitivity
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller
Controller support
XInput controllers only.
Full controller support
Controller remapping
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Controller sensitivity
Controller Y-axis inversion
Controller types
XInput-compatible controllers
Xbox button prompts
Impulse Trigger vibration
PlayStation controllers
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Generic/other controllers
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Additional information
Controller hotplugging
Haptic feedback
Digital movement supported
Simultaneous controller+KB/M
Button prompts will only reflect default input, which is the first input the game receives and is set at the beginning of the game.

Audio

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Music, SFX and dialogue.
Surround sound
7.0 support[5]
Subtitles
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost

Localizations

Language UI Audio Sub Notes
English
Czech
Fan translation - #1
French
German
Fan translation, download.
Italian
Polish
Fan translation; download.
Brazilian Portuguese
Fan translation, download.
Russian
Retail only. Patch for digital release here.
Spanish

VR support

Devices State Notes
3RD Space Gaming Vest

Issues fixed

No shadows with AMD/ATI graphics cards

This game has a similar bug as with the sequel, where shadows are not rendered properly on AMD/ATI Radeon cards.[6] This can provide sub-optimal graphical fidelity for many AMD/ATI users.
Fix shadows not rendering on AMD/ATI graphics cards[7]
  1. Download this archive and open it.
  2. If you need to have the option to change resolution in-game, go to Game resolution folder. If you need to run the game windowed borderless, go to Desktop resolution.
  3. Choose the resolution of shadow map resolution (2048x2048 for cards with 512MB of VRAM, 12888x12888 for cards with 2GB of VRAM).
  4. Replace the prototypeenginef.dll with the one you chose in the game folder.
Also includes DInput FPS Fix

Low volume

In-game audio is very quiet except for cutscenes.[8][9]
The game uses native 5.1 and does not downmix to stereo or quadraphonic. In a Stereo setup you won't have the Center and Surround Speakers so the volume will be very low, except for cutscenes (they are in Stereo).
Use KelSat's Sound Normalizer Patch

Using a hex editor on prototypeenginef.dll, go to the offset 0x008BB0C5 and change the the highlighted 2-digit value from 0D to 35 for a modest increase in volume.

Dialogue volume still remains low but will no longer sound muffled.
Use an alternative sound driver like Razer Surround. It will simulate a Surround effect while using the Full Speaker Configuration.
Use Equalizer APO with preamp and loudness compensation module.
(Linux) Use PulseEffects or EasyEffects with Auto Gain plugin.
Use PulseEffects for Linux system with PulseAudio as default audio server. EasyEffects for systems with PipeWire audio server.

Black screen on Prototype start up

Override refresh rate[citation needed]
  1. From the Start menu, Click on Run then type “dxdiag”
  2. Click on the “More Help” Tab then click the “Override Refresh Rate” Button.
  3. Set the refresh rate override value to 60.

Update rate limit

The update tickrate of the game is capped to 66.666FPS, causing frame-doubling when being displayed at a higher framerate than that, along with camera stutter when moving mouse.
Patch game to remove tickrate limit[10]
Patching out the limit should remove frame-doubling effects, and reduce mouse-input camera stutter.
Before editing, make a backup of the prototypeenginef.dll file in case the modifications go wrong.
  1. Open https://hexed.it/
  2. Click open file.
  3. Go to <path-to-game>.
  4. Open prototypeenginef.dll.
  5. In the Go To box on the right sidebar enter the offset 0x884414 and press enter.
  6. Click on the highlighted 98 number, and change the values from 98 3A (15000 value in memory as a 4-byte; as in 15000 micro seconds) to 00 00.
  7. Click Save As and download the file.
  8. Replace the original prototypeenginef.dll with the downloaded file.
  9. Launch the game.
The higher the framerate goes, the harder it is to hijack vehicles, becoming impossible at above 144. A toggleable, temporary FPS limiter is recommended for these instances.

Frame rate limit

FPS is capped at 500 FPS.
Patch game to remove or change the frame rate limit[11]
Before editing, make a backup of the prototypeenginef.dll file in case the modifications go wrong.
  1. Open https://hexed.it/
  2. Click open file.
  3. Go to <path-to-game>.
  4. Open prototypeenginef.dll.
  5. In the Go To box on the right sidebar enter the offset 0x8258F2 and press enter.
  6. Click on the highlighted D0 number, and change the values from D0 07 (2000 value in memory as a 4-byte; as in 2000 micro seconds) to 00 00.
  7. Click Save As and download the file.
  8. Replace the original prototypeenginef.dll with the downloaded file.
  9. Launch the game.
If stuttering occurs after uncapping but a higher than 500 FPS values is still desired, Use one the following methods: Change the value to a lower than 2000 micro seconds, enable an external FPS limiter tool or engage v-sync.
Additionally, High frame rates may be somewhat difficult to consistently achieve on some setups due to limited multi-threading. This can be alleviated by using dxvk to wrap D3D9 API calls to Vulkan. This reduces overall CPU usage and overhead but increases GPU usage. The Essential improvements mod which always assumes a 2GB VRAM for 4xMSAA fix can also be used as it seems to improve the performance because of that. Note that many fixes mentioned here are already included.

Low frame rate

This is caused by the engine incorrectly tracking & polling all DirectInput devices on the system.[12]
Patch game to only make use of mouse & keyboard DirectInput devices[13]
Gamepad will still be supported through XInput.
Before editing, make a backup of the prototypeenginef.dll file in case the modifications go wrong.
  1. Open https://hexed.it/
  2. Click open file.
  3. Go to <path-to-game>.
  4. Open prototypeenginef.dll.
  5. In the Go To box on the right sidebar enter the offset 0x623B10 and press enter.
  6. Click on the number 11, and change the values following it as follows:
    Original:
    11 A8 01 74 0A 80 7F 24 12 0F 84 B1 00 00 00 A8
    02 74
    Patched:
    11 80 7F 24 12 74 16 80 7F 24 13 74 10 E9 AE 00
    00 00
    (note that the last two 00 00 patches change the 02 74 values on the next line)
  7. Click Save As and download the file.
  8. Replace the original prototypeenginef.dll with the downloaded file.
  9. Launch the game.
Disable unused HID devices[citation needed]
  1. Open the Start screen/Start menu, type devmgmt.msc and press Enter.
  2. Select "Human Interface Devices".
  3. Disable all listings named "HID-compliant consumer control device", you should not need to disable ANYTHING else.
It is advised to re-enable the devices after the game has closed.
Temporarily unplug HID devices from USB before game launch[citation needed]
  1. Unplug device(s) that identify as an "HID-compliant user control device" in the Device Manager.
  2. Launch the game executable.
  3. Reconnect the unplugged device(s).
Devices must be unplugged before launching the game. Not all HID devices cause the issue. Experience will vary.
Use a Powershell script[14]
The script will disable all HID-compliant devices, run the game, and then enable all HID devices again in the background after a 3 second delay.
  1. Download the premade PowerShell script.
  2. Make sure to have Steam running to avoid the script from re-enabling the HID-compliant devices too early.
  3. Run the script as administrator to start the game through Steam and apply the fix automatically.

Notes

If you want to make your own script just put the following into a PowerShell script and run it as admin:
#Requires -RunAsAdministrator

$gamePath = start steam://rungameid/10150

$hidDevices = Get-PnpDevice -FriendlyName 'HID-compliant consumer control device' -status OK

Disable-PnpDevice -Confirm:$false -InstanceId $hidDevices.InstanceId

Start-Sleep -s 3

$gamePath | Invoke-Expression

Start-Sleep -s 3

Enable-PnpDevice -Confirm:$false -InstanceId $hidDevices.InstanceId

Sound stuttering, crackling

Having non-default sound quality settings can cause sound problems in this and some other games.
Set sound quality to 24 bit, 48000 Hz[citation needed]

See Sound problems (cracking, delays, missing music/effects, etc.)

Missing textures

Disable all Anti-aliasing[citation needed]
  • Disable Anti-aliasing (AA) in Prototype's video options
  • Disable forced AA from the Nvidia control panel or ATI's Catalyst Control Panel.

Crashing after loading saved game

The game fails to contact a server to load in billboard advertisement textures, causing a crash shortly after loading a save.
Patch game to disable networking[15]
Before editing, make a backup of the prototypeenginef.dll file in case the modifications go wrong.
  1. Open https://hexed.it/
  2. Click open file.
  3. Go to <path-to-game>.
  4. Open prototypeenginef.dll.
  5. In the Go To box on the right sidebar enter the offset 0x88168E and press enter.
  6. Click on the highlighted 0F number, and change the values from 0F 84 to 90 E9
  7. Click Save As and download the file.
  8. Replace the original prototypeenginef.dll with the downloaded file.
  9. Launch the game.
Start a new game first[citation needed]
  1. Start a new game in another save slot.
  2. Exit to main menu and load your save.

Crash after starting or loading a game

The game may crash on a CPU with more than 8 threads.
Create Steam shortcut with limited core affinity[16]
  1. Create a new shortcut
  2. Set the shortcut target to cmd /C start "steam" /affinity 0xff "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steam.exe"
See the related Steam guide to limit process affinity
Force the game to only spawn 4 async threads
Before editing, make a backup of the prototypeenginef.dll file in case the modifications go wrong.
  1. Open https://hexed.it/
  2. Click open file.
  3. Go to <path-to-game>.
  4. Open prototypeenginef.dll.
  5. In the Go To box on the right sidebar enter the offset 0xB7F020 and press enter.
  6. Click on the number 7F, and change the 4 values 7F 07 B8 01 to instead be 90 90 B8 04
  7. Click Save As and download the file.
  8. Replace the original prototypeenginef.dll with the downloaded file.
  9. Launch the game.
Depending on hyperthreading settings some systems may still have issues with 4 async threads, limiting to 2 threads with 90 90 B8 02 instead may help with those.
Increase the amount of memory available to the stack allocator
Before editing, make a backup of the prototypeenginef.dll file in case the modifications go wrong.
  1. Open https://hexed.it/
  2. Click open file.
  3. Go to <path-to-game>.
  4. Open prototypeenginef.dll.
  5. In the Go To box on the right sidebar enter the offset 0x641CC0 and press enter.
  6. Click on the selected number 58 in the editor panel and type in the number 64.
  7. Click export and download the file.
  8. Replace the original prototypeenginef.dll with the downloaded file.
  9. Launch the game.
Turn off hyperthreading and all physical processing cores above 8 or turn off all but four logical cores.[citation needed]

Enter your computer's BIOS and turn off the hyperthreading CPU feature and all physical processing cores above 8 or turn off all but four logical cores. The specific procedure depends on your motherboard, thus you have to consult the manual of your motherboard if you're unsure how to do this.

Resolution stuck at 1280x800 on 2GB+ VRAM GPUs

See Widescreen resolution[17]

Run the game at screen refresh rate

Fullscreen mode defaults to 100 Hz, even if the screen refresh rate is set higher than that.
Doing this can help achieve a more stable fps while playing
Set screen refresh rate[citation needed]
  1. Install Special K by following the Special K Unofficial Guide.
  2. Start the game once and close it immediately to allow the configuration file of Special K to be created.
  3. Open <path-to-game>\d3d9.ini or %USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Mods\SpecialK\Profiles\prototypef.exe\SpecialK.ini depending on the installation method you used.
  4. Change RefreshRate=-1 to RefreshRate=0 under [Render.FrameRate].

For Nvidia users

You don't need Special K for this to work
Set screen refresh rate on Nvidia Control Panel
  1. Go to "Manage 3D settings" and then "Program Settings"
  2. Click "Add" and search for "prototypef.exe" (if it doesn't appear click "Browse" to search manually)
  3. On "Vertical Sync" change it to "Fast"
  4. Click "Apply" and you're done.

Debug Menu

Partially functional debug menu still exists in the shipped build.
Patch game to enable debug menu.[18]
Before editing, make a backup of the prototypeenginef.dll file in case the modifications go wrong.
  1. Open https://hexed.it/
  2. Click open file.
  3. Go to <path-to-game>.
  4. Open prototypeenginef.dll.
  5. In the Go To box on the right sidebar enter the offset 0xE0E3E0 and press enter.
  6. Click on the highlighted 46 number, and change the values from 46 49 4E 41 4C 00 00 to 52 45 4C 45 41 53 45 with the text FINAL.. to a value with the text RELEASE.
  7. Click Save As and download the file.
  8. Replace the original prototypeenginef.dll with the downloaded file.
  9. Launch the game.
Debug menu is available in the main menu and in the pause menu after pressing the ~ key.

Other information

API

Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9
Shader Model support 3
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes
Windows

Middleware

Middleware Notes
Interface Scaleform
Cutscenes Bink Video

Modifications

TexMod will not function if DXVK is used.

System requirements

Windows
Minimum
Operating system (OS) XP, Vista, 7
Processor (CPU) AMD Athlon 64 X2 4000+
Intel Core 2 Duo 2.6 GHz
System memory (RAM) 2 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 8 GB
Video card (GPU) ATI Radeon X1800
Nvidia GeForce 7800 GT
256 MB of VRAM
DirectX 9.0c compatible


Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 Notes regarding Steam Play (Linux) data:

References

  1. Verified by User:Radmaxx on 2024-01-16
    Checked with the PS3 version.
  2. Games You've Missed - Games for Windows - last accessed on 19 August 2022
  3. Verified by User:Amethystviper on 2023-12-19
  4. From CrazyIvan's comment - last accessed on May 2023
  5. Verified by User:Aaronth07 on 2020-03-13
    Tested with SpecialK
  6. Screenshot showing difference between Nvidia and ATI - Steam Users' Forums (retrieved)
  7. Guzz's post in overclockers.ru on fixing the issue with shadows on AMD GPUs - last accessed on 2021-09-07
  8. Prototrype Volume Fix? :: Prototype General Discussions - last accessed on 2016-3-9
  9. Really Quiet Sound Issue - Prototype Message Board for PC - GameFAQs - last accessed on 2016-3-9
  10. Verified by User:Infogram1 on 2023-12-09
    Tested with prototypeenginef.dll v1.0.0.1, patching out the limit made camera movement noticeably more clearer, and mouse input stutter seemed reduced.
  11. Verified by User:Radmaxx on 2024-01-16
  12. F.E.A.R. - FPS / Logitech fix - Steam Users' Forums (retrieved)
  13. Verified by User:Infogram1 on 2023-12-09
    Found & tested with prototypeenginef.dll v1.0.0.1, mouse/keyboard/gamepad all still work in first mission while FPS improved greatly.
  14. Remove FPS limit - HID device toggle script - Steam - last accessed on 2023-01-21
  15. Verified by User:Infogram1 on 2023-12-09
    Found & tested with prototypeenginef.dll v1.0.0.1, previously game would crash a few seconds after loading, now loads in fine.
  16. KieSeyHow's comment - last accessed on 2020-05-10
  17. Verified by User:Blackbird on 2017-06-17
    Tested with GTX 980 (4 GB VRAM) and the game can't use higher res without the patch.
  18. Verified by User:Radmaxx on 2024-01-16