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Sacred cover
Studio II Software
Expansion Kritzelkratz 3000
Physical (Europe, South Africa) Take-Two Interactive
Physical (Spain, Italy) FX Interactive
Physical (North America) Encore
Linux Linux Game Publishing
Digital (2008-2022) Strategy First
Digital (2022-present) THQ Nordic
Release dates
Windows February 27, 2004
Linux April 9, 2009
Metacritic 74
Monetization One-time game purchase, Expansion pack
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Bird's-eye view, Isometric
Controls Point and select
Genres ARPG
Themes Fantasy
Series Sacred
Sacred on HowLongToBeat
Sacred on IGDB
Sacred on MobyGames
Sacred on Wikipedia
Sacred 2004
Sacred 2: Fallen Angel 2008
Sacred Citadel 2013
Sacred 3 2014

Sacred is a fantasy ARPG game developed by Studio II Software with singleplayer and multiplayer content.

The game started development around the year 2000 as Armalion: Realms of Arcania, a game set in the The Dark Eye universe by the studio Ikarion Software. After the staff moved to the newly formed Studio II Software (wholly owned by Ascaron Entertainment) in 2001, after Ikarion had bankrupted, the project abandoned the Dark Eye universe and was briefly named L.O.R.D. (Lands of Raising Demons or land of the raging demon) before finally settling on Sacred and its official announcement in the end of December 2002. After launching in February 2004, the game received a major free update (patch 1.7/1.8) in September 2004 called Sacred Plus which included new quests, regions, enemies and improvements to existing content and interface. A full expansion called Underworld was released in March 2005, featuring two new classes and an entirely separate campaign set after the events of the base game. Around the same time, the Gold edition was released containing all aforementioned content and became the most widely available version of the game. The final patch for Underworld, 2.28, was released in November 2006, ending over half a decade of development on the game.

Digital publishing rights were claimed by Strategy First in 2008, who had released the game on Steam and, until the rights were transferred to THQ Nordic in February 2022, consolidating the copyright over the IP for the first time since the Ascaron/Studio II bankruptcy of 2009.

On modern systems, the game does not suffer from any major issues, save for the absence of 3D audio support which can be restored by using IndirectSound. Unofficial community patches have become an essential part of present-day installations, as they include full widescreen support and optional quality-of-life improvements, but were only made with Underworld / Gold in mind, as the latter is the most widely available release of the game.

The official multiplayer service by TinCat was shut down, but a community-run alternative is available - a live instance used to be hosted by the author, but is no longer online, though it is possible to compile a new one using the source code.

General information

Sacred Tribute - a fansite with archives and resources from the Sacred franchise
SacredWiki - a community-maintained wiki about Sacred, Sacred Underworld and Sacred 2: Fallen Angel.
Wolfe's Lair (archive) - fansite with walkthroughs and tips for Sacred and the Underworld expansion 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)
CD key
ProtectDISC Software DRM for English, German and Italian releases. StarForce 3 DRM[Note 1] for Chinese, French and Russian releases.
Custom DRM code may sabotage the game by sending the player to the Mal-Ork-A island from which there is no exit.
Publisher website
DRM details are not known
Sacred Gold. Sold by Strategy First despite the 2022 copyright transfer.
DRM-free after installation (requires an internet connection during installation)
Sacred Plus
Icon overlay.png
Sacred Gold
Gamesplanet logo.svg
Icon overlay.png
Sacred Gold
CD key
Sacred Gold. Serial keys for multiplayer available by request to GOG support team.[5]
Green Man Gaming
Icon overlay.png
Sacred Gold
Humble Store
Icon overlay.png
Sacred Gold
Icon overlay.png
Sacred Gold. Does not provide multiplayer serial keys.
ZOOM Platform (unavailable)
Sacred Gold
StarForce DRM for this game does not work on modern versions of Windows (see above for affected versions).
A free demo version is available from ModDB.

Version differences

  • Sacred - the original game, released in February 2004
  • Sacred Plus - Free expansion pack released in October 2004 as part of the 1.7 and 1.8 patches for the base game. It adds 2 regions, monsters, quests, items.
  • Sacred Underworld - Expansion pack released in April 2005. It adds 2 player characters (Daemon and Dwarf), 6 regions, 2 acts, new monsters and items.
  • Sacred Gold - Released in August 2005, includes the base game and both expansions.


Type Notes
Expansion pack The expansion pack includes new classes, items and a separate campaign.
One-time game purchase The game requires an upfront purchase to access.

DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
Sacred Plus Distributed in 1.7 and 1.8 official patches for the base game for free.
Sacred Underworld Files released as free download for Italian and Spanish releases by FX Interactive in 2006, requiring an SMS message request for a serial key.[6][7]

Essential improvements


The latest patch for Sacred is 1.8.26 (Dec 2004) - which upgrades it to Sacred Plus. It is available here.
The latest patch for Sacred Underworld / Gold is 2.28 (Nov 2006). It is available here. It is already included in the digital releases.

Improve performance

Force Vsync off; see Disabling Vertical sync (Vsync)
Remove the default 128 VRAM limit
  1. Open Settings.cfg
  2. Set GFX_LIMIT128 : 1 to 0
  3. Save the changes and close the file.
Use dgVoodoo 2; see High-resolution rendering

Skip intro videos

Delete/rename video files[8]
  1. Go to <path-to-game>\movie\.
  2. Delete or rename ascaron.wmv and oem.wmv.

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\SETTINGS.CFG[Note 2]
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/12320/pfx/[Note 3]
It's unknown whether this game follows the XDG Base Directory Specification on Linux. Please fill in this information.

Save game data location

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\save[Note 2]
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/12320/pfx/[Note 3]
Saved games are GAME**.PAK; saved heroes are hero**.pax.

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
GOG Galaxy
Steam Cloud


General settings.
General settings.
Running in standard 1024x768 resolution.
Running in standard 1024x768 resolution.
Running in 1920x1080 resolution via dgVoodoo 2
Running in 1920x1080 resolution via dgVoodoo 2

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
1024x768 by default. See High-resolution rendering.
4K Ultra HD
Enable with HD mod and dgVoodoo 2
Field of view (FOV)
Set in launcher.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
See High-resolution rendering.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
FSAA on/off. See High-resolution rendering. Forcing MSAA/CSAA externally may introduce severe grid-like visual artifacts.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
To disable, see Disabling Vertical sync (Vsync)
60 FPS
Low performance when zoomed out. See Improve performance.
120+ FPS

High-resolution rendering

Use PureHD
Includes some fixes, manually set widescreen up to 1080p
Requires Sacred Gold.
No gameplay changes.
  1. Download files
  2. Extract the files into <path-to-game>
  3. Check Settings.cfg[citation needed]
Download and apply dgVoodoo 2
This fix may introduce graphical artifacts.
Will stretch graphics horizontally, altering the original aspect ratio.
  1. Download dgVoodoo 2
  2. Copy the three .dll files from the MS\x86 folder and the dgVoodoo executable into <path-to-game>
  3. Open the dgVoodoo executable from the game folder and click the .\ button
  4. In the DirectX tab, set Resolution to the monitor's native one and untick 'dgVoodoo Watermark'
  5. Click Apply and close the application.
Use Sacred NL
Fixes all artifacts caused by playing at widescreen resolutions and interface scales correctly.
Adds many QoL improvements like extended zoom and new hotkeys, minimap, model viewer, language switch, cheats and more.
Requires Sacred Gold.
Installer currently broken, refer to manual installation guide

Disabling Vertical sync (Vsync)

Force Vsync off
This fix may introduce graphical artifacts.
  1. Go to <path-to-game>
  2. Open Settings.cfg
  3. Add the line WAITRETRACE : 0 at the end of the file
  4. Save the changes and close the file


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

Hotkeys for Combat Arts

There is an undocumented feature of using hotkeys for Combat Arts, so as not to be limited to the default five slots in the game. In the combat arts menu, hover over a power and press one of the F1-F6 keys. It will now be selected when pressing that key.[9]


Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
SFX, Speech, Music.
Surround sound
Requires ALchemy
Plot dialogue and quests are always shown in text; brief character acknowledgements and taunts are not subtitled.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
EAX support
Unknown version, supported by ALchemy.
Royalty free audio


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
US English release removes blood effects, unlike the European and Oceanian English-language releases; digital releases use the non-US version.
Simplified Chinese
Retail only.
Traditional Chinese
Retail only.
Retail only.
Retail and only.
Retail only; download for digital releases.
Retail only.
Retail only.
Retail only; download for digital releases
Brazilian Portuguese
For Sacred Gold only; download.
Retail and only.
Retail only; download for digital releases.


Online features require a product key. For the version, the key is available by submitting a multiplayer key request.

Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play
Online play
16 The official TinCat service has been shut down; see Multiplayer connectivity without VPNs for a workaround.

Connection types

Type Native Notes
Use GameServer.exe in the installation folder.
Direct IP

Multiplayer connectivity without VPNs

Use the Sacred Ancaria Connection
The project is open source, with a GitHub repository here.
  1. Download and compile the code.
  2. Execute it before launching Sacred.
  3. In the game options, select "Modem/ISDN" as the network speed setting.
  4. Go to the LAN menu and check for any servers to come up.

Issues fixed

Stop flickering load screens with Nvidia GPU

Use dgVoodoo 2
To avoid a DirectX error on startup when also using PureHD, set Scaling to Unspecified.

Game stuck at loading screen

Opening Sequence plays, then it starts loading, and then it gets to Fonts and freezes.
Run Config.exe and force 32-bit color depth.

3D audio effects option disabled

Install IndirectSound
  1. Download and extract IndirectSound
  2. Copy the two files, dsound.dll and dsound.ini.
  3. Paste into <path-to-game>.
  4. Run the game, and choose 3D effects in the sound settings.

Windows key interference

The Win key, when accidentally pressed, minimizes the game, causing it to freeze.
Use AutoHotkey
  1. Install the program.
  2. Create a text file with the line LWin::return and save it as an .ahk script.
  3. Execute the script by double-clicking on it before running the game.

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 7
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes
Sacred Gold had a Linux release in 2009 (by Linux Game Publishing).


Middleware Notes
Cutscenes Windows Media Video 9
Multiplayer TinCat


ReBorn HD

The biggest and most elaborate balance mod for Sacred.
Requires Sacred Gold.
Many changes in the overall balance, bosses, heroes, items, their drop, game mechanics.
Does not affect the original executable, provides own widescreen support and is compatible with most language versions.

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 98 SE, ME, 2000, XP
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium III 800 MHz
System memory (RAM) 256 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 2 GB
Video card (GPU) 64 MB of VRAM
DirectX 8 compatible
Sound (audio device) DirectX 8 compatible
Operating system (OS) 2.2.x or better Linux kernel with glibc-2.1 or later and X-Windows (XFree86 3.3.x or later)
Processor (CPU) 1.0 GHz x86
System memory (RAM) 256 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 3.7 GB
Video card (GPU) Hardware Accelerated 3D Graphics card
32 MB of VRAM
Sound (audio device) OSS or ALSA Compatible


  1. This version of StarForce DRM does not work on Windows Vista or later.[1][2][3][4] For supported versions of Windows the StarForce driver may need to be updated manually using SFUPDATE.
  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 Notes regarding Steam Play (Linux) data: