Thief: Deadly Shadows

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Thief: Deadly Shadows
Thief: Deadly Shadows cover
Ion Storm
2004-2009 Eidos Interactive
2009-present Square Enix
Unreal Engine 2
Release dates
Windows May 25, 2004
Metacritic 85
Monetization One-time game purchase
Modes Singleplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Third-person, First-person
Controls Direct control
Genres Stealth, Immersive sim
Art styles Realistic
Themes Steampunk, Fantasy, Medieval, Victorian
Series Thief
Thief: Deadly Shadows on HowLongToBeat
Thief: Deadly Shadows on IGDB
Thief: Deadly Shadows on MobyGames
Thief: Deadly Shadows on Wikipedia
Thief: The Dark Project 1998
Thief II: The Metal Age 2000
Thief: Deadly Shadows 2004
The Dark Mod (unofficial spin-off) 2009
Thief 2014

Key points

The Sneaky Upgrade adds widescreen/multi-monitor support and fixes various issues. Includes the Gold Mod, which removes loading zones and fixes mission bugs.

General information

TTLG Forums - Thief Series
TTLG Forums - modding & mission design 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)
SecuROM 5 DRM disc check. The official editor has the 1.1 executable with removed DRM.
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Manual, wallpapers, soundtrack, avatars and design sketches included.
Green Man Gaming
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Humble Store
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Games for Windows Marketplace (unavailable)
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A free demo version is available from GameFront.

Essential improvements[edit]


Patch v1.1 is the latest retail patch. Digital distribution versions already include this patch.

Skip intro videos[edit]

Change ShowIntroMovies in DEFAULT.INI[citation needed]
  1. Go to the installation folder.
  2. Go to the System folder and open DEFAULT.INI.
  3. Go to the [PCStartup] section.
  4. Change ShowIntroMovies=True to ShowIntroMovies=False
  5. Save your changes.


A detailed tweak guide for gameplay, graphics and other aspects is available.
Archived download for the rare DXtool needed at some point in guide

Sneaky Upgrade[edit]

Includes "Thief 3 Gold", "The Minimalist Project" and "John P.'s texture pack" (all optional).
Adds native widescreen/multi-monitor support and fixes compatibility issues.
Gold mod removes most of the loading zones in the levels, expands maps and fixes bugs.
Minimalist Project aims to provide an experience more like Thief: The Dark Project and Thief II. Increases the difficulty of the game.

Thief: Deadly Shadows ESRGAN Pack[edit]

AI upscaled textures & cinematics for Thief: Deadly Shadows. Requires Sneaky Upgrade to play.
Not only all the textures upscaled but also modified MatLib (material library) file included to add or restore normal maps for all the materials lacking them.
Comes in two versions:

  • Full pack - all the upscaled textures and modified MatLib. With this pack, the game may be slower to load
  • Light pack - downscaled version of the full pack but with all the MatLib and normal files improvements. Loads much faster with better visuals than the original game

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\System\Default.ini[Note 1]
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/6980/pfx/[Note 2]

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\save\SaveGames[Note 1]
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/6980/pfx/[Note 2]

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

System Native Notes
GOG Galaxy
Steam Cloud


Video settings.
Video settings.

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
Install the Sneaky Upgrade to unlock all resolutions in-game.
Install the Sneaky Upgrade to unlock all resolutions in-game.
Install the Sneaky Upgrade and set SneakyTweaker HUD Width to 1.0.[2]
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
See Field of view (FOV).
Toggle with Alt+ Enter.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Called MultiSampling; also see Use MultiSampling and Bloom together.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Disabling can cause lock picking and ladder issues.
60 FPS
120+ FPS
Refresh rates above 85Hz cause lock picking and ladder issues.[3]

Field of view (FOV)[edit]

This game uses vertical FOV. See FOV Calculator for help.
Set Sneaky Upgrade VerticalFOV[citation needed]
  1. Install the Sneaky Upgrade.
  2. Run the game and set your resolution.
  3. Go to the Thief Deadly Shadows\save\Options folder in the installation folder.
  4. Open SneakyOptions.ini.
  5. Change VerticalFOV to the vertical FOV you want and save your changes.


Keyboard and mouse State Notes
Mouse acceleration
No mouse speed option in-game. Mouse speed seems to be also dependent on FPS.
Mouse sensitivity
See Mouse sensitivity.
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Set in Options, Control.
Controller support
If plugged in, a controller can occasionally cause auto-walking. Additionally, a plugged in controller may crash the game if you rebind keys.

Mouse sensitivity[edit]

Set horizontal and vertical mouse sensitivities
  1. Install Sneaky Upgrade.
  2. Open the SneakyTweaker and go to Sneaky Upgrade/Tweaks.
  3. Change the Mouse Sensitivity Factor to your liking, with 1.0 being the default value.
  4. Press Apply and start the game.


Audio settings.
Audio settings.

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Sound Effects and Music
Surround sound
Up to 7.0 output with DirectSound3D restoration software.
Subtitles for all speech (disabled by default).
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
EAX support
EAX 3,[4] EAX 4[5]


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Included in digital versions but needs this package to enable.
Included in digital versions but needs this package to enable.
Fan translation by KGy.
Included in digital versions but needs this package to enable.
Retail only. Patch for digital release here.
Brazilian Portuguese
Retail only; CD Expert. Translation.
Fan translation by «Dark Fate Team» and «S.Siamsky, Xionus»
Fan translation, download.

Issues fixed[edit]

Intro movie keeps repeating[edit]

This problem occurs on multi-core systems and is fixed by the Sneaky Upgrade.
Use Sneaky Upgrade[citation needed]

Install the Sneaky Upgrade.

Garrett starts floating in midair[edit]

Equip your bow and get ready to fire it, then press space to holster the arrow.

Garrett gets stuck when lock picking or using ladders[edit]

This is caused by high frame rates; enable Vsync and use a refresh rate no higher than 60 Hz.
Enable Vsync[6]
  1. Enable Vsync in-game.
  2. Ensure your in-game resolution has a refresh rate no higher than 60Hz.
  3. If problems persist disable Vsync in-game and force in the graphics card control panel instead.[7]

Game freezes or crashes when trying to load a save file[edit]

Lower the resolution[citation needed]
  • Lowering the game's resolution is reported to have solved this issue for some users.

Temporary switch to desktop or black screen when loading[edit]

Use Sneaky Upgrade[citation needed]
  1. Run the Sneaky Upgrade installer.
  2. When shown the installation options, enable the desktop effects fix.
  3. Continue installing normally. The game will now load without interruption.
A black screen may be seen momentarily at the start of loading a save when switching resolution.

Use MultiSampling and Bloom together[edit]

Deadly Shadows doesn't allow you to set both MultiSampling and Bloom in-game; enabling either will disable the other one.
Enable both settings[8]
  1. Enable Bloom in-game (leaving MultiSampling disabled).
  2. Force anti-aliasing through your graphics card's control panel. Both effects will now display together.

Use Reshade provided Bloom without original game Bloom bluriness[edit]

If you enable Bloom in-game, the image became blurry because of the original shader code. This can be bypassed using ReShade.
Enabling ReShade effect[9]
  • Install latest d3d8to9. Original games work on DirectX 8. This library translates game API calls to DirectX 9. That will allow ReShade to work.
  • Install latest ReShade to <Game Directory>\System\ using DX9 API. Download standard shader packages.
  • Edit <Game Directory>\System\reshade.ini and edit following parameters

[DX9_BUFFER_DETECTION] PreserveDepthBuffer=1


  • Enable and tune any Bloom effect you like (PPFX Bloom for example). This will allow to use better quality Bloom without blurring the picture.
You can also enable FXAA antialiasing and PPFX SSDO (Ambient Occlusion) in Reshade
MXAO, RayTracing and some other shaders crash game. Choose wisely.

Vsync option not working on Windows 10[edit]

Use dgVoodoo2
  1. Download dgVoodoo2.
  2. Copy D3D8.DLL from the \MS\x86\ folder into <path-to-game>.

Jittery/Laggy movement[edit]

Use d3d8to9 and DXVK
  1. Install latest d3d8to9. Original games work on DirectX 8. This library translates game API calls to DirectX 9.
  2. Copy D3D8.DLL from the \MS\x86\ folder to <path-to-game>.
  3. Download the latest DXVK release.
  4. Extract the dxvk-version.tar.gz archive.
  5. Copy d3d9.dll from the x32 folder.
  6. Paste d3d9.dll into <path-to-game>.
Doesn't fix all the jitter, some is unavoidable.

VR support[edit]

3D modes Native Notes
User created profile, requires DGVoodoo2 v 2.55.4, see profile introdution.
Note: Profile may not work with the latest wrapper, in case of issues please report to the vorpx forum.

Other information[edit]

Enabling HBAO+ on Nvidia graphics cards[edit]

Use the Ambient Occlusion flag 0x0000001E with Quality or High Quality.
Using Ambient Occlusion flag 0x0000001E[10]
  1. Install the Sneaky Upgrade and enable the 'Mouse Improvements' option.
  2. Download and run Nvidia Profile Inspector.
  3. Under Profiles select Thief 3 Deadly Shadows.
  4. Under Ambient Occlusion compatibility insert the flag 0x0000001E.
  5. Under Ambient Occlusion usage select Enabled.
  6. Under Ambient Occlusion setting select a quality level. In order to use HBAO+ you must use Quality or High Quality.
  7. Click Apply changes.
Introduces "bleeding", which affects certain game/HUD elements.


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 8
Shader Model support 1.1
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes


Middleware Notes
Physics Havok
Audio DirectSound3D

System requirements[edit]

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 2000
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 4 1.5 GHz
System memory (RAM) 256 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 3 GB
Video card (GPU) ATI Radeon 8500
Nvidia GeForce 3 Ti
64 MB of VRAM
DirectX 9.0 compatible
Shader model 1.1 support
Sound (audio device) DirectX 9 device


  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 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>/6980/ in addition to or instead of this directory. The app ID (6980) may differ in some cases. Treat backslashes as forward slashes. See the glossary page for details.