Theme Hospital

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
Theme Hospital
Theme Hospital cover
Developers
Bullfrog Productions
Publishers
Electronic Arts
Release dates
DOS March 28, 1997
Windows March 28, 1997
Windows (DOSBox) April 12, 2012
macOS (OS X) (DOSBox) October 18, 2012[1]
Taxonomy
Monetization One-time game purchase
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Bird's-eye view, Isometric
Controls Point and select
Genres Building, Simulation
Art styles Cartoon
Themes Comedy, Healthcare
Series Theme Park
Theme Hospital on HowLongToBeat
Theme Hospital guide on StrategyWiki
Theme Hospital on MobyGames
Theme Hospital on Wikipedia
Theme Park
Theme Park 1994
Theme Hospital 1997
Shin Theme Park 1997
Theme Park World 1999
Theme Park Inc. 2001

Theme Hospital is a building simulator developed by Bullfrog Productions and published by Electronic Arts in 1997 for MS-DOS and Microsoft Windows compatible PCs in which players design and operate a privately owned hospital with the goal of curing patients of fictitious comical ailments.

The game is the thematic successor to Theme Park, also produced by Bullfrog, and the second instalment in their Theme series, and part of their Designer Series. The game is noted for its humour, and contains numerous references to pop culture. Peter Molyneux and James Leach came up with the idea of creating a Theme game based on a hospital, but Molyneux was not directly involved in development due to his work on Dungeon Keeper. Designers originally planned to include four distinct gameplay modes corresponding to historical time periods, but this was dropped due to time pressures on the team. Multiplayer support with up to four players was added in a patch. The game received a generally positive reception, with reviewers praising the graphics and humour in particular. Theme Hospital was a commercial success, selling over 4 million copies worldwide, and was ported to the PlayStation in 1998. A Sega Saturn version was in development, but cancelled.

The game was re-released on GOG.com in 2012 and Origin in 2015, and the PlayStation version was released on the PlayStation Network in Europe in 2008, Japan in 2009, and North America in 2010. Revival attempts have been made with the development of open-source remakes such as CorsixTH.

General information

GOG.com Community Discussions
GOG.com Support Page

Availability[edit]

Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Retail
DRM details are not known
Native Windows version has compatibility problems.
DOS
Windows
GOG.com
DRM-free
DOS version pre-packaged with DOSBox.[2]
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Origin
Origin
DOS version pre-packaged with DOSBox.
Windows

Essential improvements[edit]

CorsixTH[edit]

CorsixTH is an open-source reimplementation of Theme Hospital. It features high resolution support, zooming, improved game logic, option to remove destroyed rooms for a fee, unlimited saving, and custom content support.

Patches[edit]

Mouse Lag Patch
Sets the CPU affinity to 3 instead of 1, though you may need to fiddle with this number.
Modify exe CPU affinity[3]
  1. Download ImageCFG
  2. Extract imagecfg.exe to the installation folder.
  3. Go into the installation folder and execute each in order:
imagecfg -u WINMAIN.EXE
imagecfg -a 0x4 WINMAIN.EXE

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
DOS <path-to-game>\HOSPITAL.CFG
Windows <path-to-game>\HOSPITAL.CFG[Note 1]
macOS (OS X) <path-to-game> (mounted in DOSBox)[Note 2]

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
DOS <path-to-game>\Save
Windows <path-to-game>\Save[Note 1]
macOS (OS X) <path-to-game> (mounted in DOSBox)[Note 2]
Edit HOSPITAL.CFG after where it says INSTALL PATH= to the installation folder, making sure to put a trailing backslash (\) at the end of the folder name. This tells the game where to save the save files.

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

System Native Notes
GOG Galaxy
Origin

Video[edit]

Graphics feature State Notes
Widescreen resolution
Use CorsixTH to enable widescreen mode
Multi-monitor
Ultra-widescreen
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
Windowed
For DOSBox toggle with Alt+ Enter (see the glossary page for other workarounds).
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Use CorsixTH to enable windowed mode.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Vertical sync (Vsync)
For DOSBox use an unofficial build (see the glossary page for other workarounds).
60 FPS and 120+ FPS

Input[edit]

Keyboard and mouse State Notes
Remapping
For DOSBox use the DOSBox Mapper (see the glossary page for other workarounds).
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller
Controller support
For DOSBox use the DOSBox Mapper (see the glossary page for other workarounds).

Audio[edit]

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
Subtitles
All speech is text-based.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
For DOSBox change the priority background value in the DOSBox configuration file.

Localizations

Language UI Audio Sub Notes
English
French
German
Italian
Japanese
Japanese retail release only.
Polish
Fan translation, download.
Russian
Unofficial translation, download
Spanish
Swedish

Network[edit]

Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play
4 Added in the last patch.
Online play
For DOSBox use DOSBox IPX/modem emulation.

Connection types

Other information[edit]

API[edit]

Technical specs Supported Notes
DOS video modes SVGA
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes
Windows
CorsixTH uses a 64-bit .exe

System requirements[edit]

DOS
Minimum
Operating system (OS) 6.2
Processor (CPU) 66 MHz
System memory (RAM) 8 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 20 MB
Video card (GPU) SVGA
Windows
Minimum
Operating system (OS) 95
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium
System memory (RAM) 16 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD)
Video card (GPU) SVGA
macOS (OS X)
Minimum
Operating system (OS) 10.6.8 or later
Processor (CPU) Intel Core Duo 2 GHz+
System memory (RAM) 1 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 200 MB
Video card (GPU) 64 MB of VRAM

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 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).
  2. 2.0 2.1 File/folder structure within the installation folder reflects the path(s) listed for DOS game data. For the GOG.com release, file changes in DOSBox are redirected to <path-to-game>/cloud_saves/ even if GOG Galaxy is not used (this folder contains all redirected files, so some files in the cloud_saves folder might be temporary files or other files that do not contain saves or settings).

References