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This page is for the 1998 first-person shooter. For the unrelated 1991 game published by Ubi Soft, see Unreal (1991).

Unreal cover
Epic Games
Digital Extremes
Return to Na Pali Legend Entertainment
Mac OS (Classic) Westlake Interactive
macOS (OS X) Westlake Interactive
Linux Ryan C. Gordon
Original GT Interactive
Later retail Infogrames
Unreal Anthology Midway Games
Mac OS MacSoft
Digital Epic Games
Unreal Engine 1
Release dates
Windows May 22, 1998[1]
Mac OS (Classic) September 1, 1998[2]
Linux 2002
macOS (OS X) 2005
Monetization One-time game purchase, Expansion pack
Microtransactions None
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives First-person
Controls Direct control
Genres Action, FPS, Shooter
Art styles Realistic
Themes Sci-fi
Series Unreal
Unreal on HowLongToBeat
Unreal on IGDB
Unreal guide on StrategyWiki
Unreal on MobyGames
Unreal on Wikipedia
Unreal 1998
Unreal Tournament 1999
Unreal Tournament 2003 2002
Unreal II: The Awakening 2003
Unreal Tournament 2004 2004
Unreal Tournament 3 2007
Unreal Tournament 4 Cancelled


The Mac OS X version of this game does not work on Mac OS X Lion (version 10.7) or later due to the removal of support for PowerPC apps.
GameSpy online services have been shut down (see Network for solutions).

Unreal is a singleplayer and multiplayer first-person action, FPS and shooter game in the Unreal series.

General information - A site for all classic Unreal games
Liandri Archives - A dedicated Unreal wiki site that collects information about all the games in the series.
Unreal SP - A forum dedicated to the Single Player element of Unreal, featuring discussions of maps, cut content, and general trivia.
Unreal Wiki - A wiki on how to use Unreal Editor, UnrealScript and other technical aspects of Unreal Engine.
Unreal Admin Wiki - A wiki on how to manage Unreal multiplayer servers. 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)
Disc check removed with patch 217.[3]
Mac OS (unavailable)
Unreal Gold. Prepackaged with nGlide v1.02.
Delisted on December 23, 2022.[4]
GamersGate (unavailable)
Icon overlay.png
Unreal Gold. Unavailable in Germany.
Steam (unavailable)
Icon overlay.png
Unreal Gold.
The Linux installer is available for Unreal Gold, Unreal, Return To Na Pali, they are based on Loki Software's linux port Unreal Tournament, although it treats Unreal as a mod. Requires the CD for installation. See Running native Linux version.
The complete soundtrack is found in <path-to-game>\Music\ in UMX format. These can be converted into standard lossless audio files using a tracker player such as XMPlay or a tracker editor such as OpenMPT.
A faithful higher quality desktop icon for Windows (and some Linux distros) can be found on the files section.

Version differences

Unreal Gold includes the base game and the Return to Na Pali expansion.


DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
Mission Pack 1: Return to Na Pali Included with Unreal Gold.
Fusion Map Pack Available for free.
Mac OS

Essential improvements

In-game general settings.
In-game general settings.
In-game HUD settings.
In-game HUD settings.




OldUnreal 227j Patch

A huge patch, it adds support for modern Windows, extra renders, multiple bug fixes, and many other additions. It also includes a patch to allow Unreal to run natively on Linux, however it requires Wine or a Windows partition to get the files.

Removes DRM from Steam version and disables GOG Galaxy integration.
Direct3D10 & Direct3D11 renderers do not work with Version 227j, only Version 227i does.
If on Mac, try Unreal Gold OS X instead.
A list of new configuration settings can be found on the OldUnreal forums.
Unreal Gold Fix
Resolves several issues related to single-player and multiplayer modes.
Fixes bugs in Return to Na Pali that prevent player progress.

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\System\*.ini[Note 1]
Mac OS (Classic)
Linux <path-to-game>\System\*.ini
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/13250/pfx/[Note 2]
This game does not follow the XDG Base Directory Specification on Linux.
Linux version uses a separate INI file called UnrealLinux.ini.

Save game data location

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\Save\[Note 1]
Mac OS (Classic)
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/13250/pfx/[Note 2]

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
GOG Galaxy
Steam Cloud


In-game video settings.
In-game video settings.

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
See the WSGF Unreal entry for details.
The OldUnreal 227 patch is required. See the WSGF Unreal entry for details.
The OldUnreal 227 Patch is required. See the WSGF Unreal entry for details.
4K Ultra HD
Force with nGlide or dgVoodoo if using Glide. The OldUnreal 227 Patch is required for other APIs and widescreen.
Option available for double-sized font in main menu.
Use OldUnreal 227 Patch to increase the size of the translator to up to four times the original.
Field of view (FOV)
Default FOV is 90º. The OldUnreal 227 Patch is required for simple selection.
Otherwise type fov  in the console, followed by the desired fov. Use 100 for 16:10 or 106.4 for 16:9 to maintain the same vertical FOV as 4:3. Use an FOV calculator for other aspect ratios.
Click the resize icon in the top right corner of the in-game taskbar. Automatically switches to software renderer if using D3D 6/7 or Glide.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Forced via GPU control panel/tools, or use the Direct3D8, Direct3D9 or OpenGL renderers and set MaxAnisotropy in configuration file.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Glide: Use nGlide and force via GPU control panel.
Direct3D8, Direct3D9, and OpenGL: enable MSAA in configuration file or force SGSSAA with Nvidia Profile Inspector.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Glide: Use nGlide and force in nGlide configurator.
Direct3D8, Direct3D9, and OpenGL: Always on; force off GPU control panel.
60 FPS
Glide capped at 63 FPS. For Windows XP and later, use nGlide, or the OldUnreal 227 patch's OpenGL or D3D9 renderer to avoid 30 FPS cap.[5]
120+ FPS
Framerate is tied to monitor refresh rate, certain effects like water and shadows have issues at high framerates. To fix without unoffical patches, follow this Steam guide (only changing 0AD7A33B to 00000000 needed). Or use OldUnreal 227 Patch.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
See the glossary page for potential alternatives.

Texture filtering

nGlide's DirectX 9 wrapper does not use mipmapping, resulting in texture aliasing on distant textures. Force SGSSAA or use nGlide's Vulkan wrapper or the 227 patch's OpenGL or D3D9 renderer instead. These can also force mipmapping by setting AutoGenerateMipmaps and AlwaysMipmap to true in <path-to-game>\System\Unreal.ini / <path-to-game>\System\UnrealLinux.ini.
The 227 patch's OpenGL and D3D9 renderers allow disabling bilinear filtering by setting NoFiltering to true in <path-to-game>\System\Unreal.ini.


In-game key map settings.
In-game key map settings.
In-game general control settings.
In-game general control settings.

Keyboard and mouse State Notes
Additional inputs can be rebound in <path-to-game>\System\User.ini.
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
Separate GUI and camera sensitivity speeds.
Mouse sensitivity is affected by the field of view. Therefore it is recommended to use to calculate the sensitivity based on the desired field of view and make sure the DirectInput option (or RawHIDInput if the OldUnreal 227 Patch is installed) in Preferences → Input is checked as this option ignores the Windows Pointer Speed.
Mouse input in menus
Cannot scroll lists with a scroll wheel.
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller support
Full controller support
Controller remapping
Controller sensitivity
Controller Y-axis inversion
Controller types
XInput-compatible controllers
PlayStation controllers
Generic/other controllers
Additional information
Button prompts
Controller hotplugging
Haptic feedback
Digital movement supported
Simultaneous controller+KB/M


In-game audio settings.
In-game audio settings.

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
Up to 7.0 output.[6] Requires DirectSound 3D restoration software for anywhere between 5.1-8.0 or installing the 227i patch and selecting OpenAL driver on a modern soundcard/system.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Only when minimized; does not mute upon Alt+Tab .
EAX support
A3D 1.x, A3D 2.0, DirectSound3D, EAX 1.[7]
Doesn't appear to be a way to select which API, the best supported seems to be used, with A3D 2.0 being used on modern systems with Alchemy installed (According to game logs). A3D support could require to reduce sound channels to 8.[8]
See Restore 3D sound for OpenAL Soft HRTF for headphone users.
Royalty free audio


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Fan translation, Download; Oldunreal 227 Patch is required, comes with a few mod translations too.
Added with Oldunreal's 227 Patch.
Added with Oldunreal's 227 Patch.
Added with Oldunreal's 227 Patch.
Added with Oldunreal's 227 Patch.
Added with Oldunreal's 227 Patch.
Added with Oldunreal's 227 Patch.


Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play
16 Versus, Co-op
Online play
16 Versus, Co-op
The official GameSpy service has been shut down; use the OldUnreal 227 Patch.
All official maps are designed for at most 16 players. However, dedicated servers can be set externally to have the max player limit at 32.
Return to Na Pali campaign will not function under co-op without third-party patches.

Connection types


Protocol Port(s) and/or port range(s)
TCP 7777
UDP 7777
Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) support status is unknown.
This is the default port used. It can be changed externally by the user.

VR support

3D modes State Notes
User created game profile, requires patch 227i, see vorpx forum profile introduction.

Issues fixed

Game crashes with a General Protection Fault upon start-up or does not start at all and generates no logs

Add Unreal.exe to the DEP exceptions list[citation needed]


On some modern versions of Windows 10, this has to be done through the command line.
  1. Run this cmd as administrator: BCDEDIT /SET {CURRENT} NX ALWAYSOFF
  2. Reboot for it take effect. Note it will effect all programs on the system.

Game is lagging

Change setting in your Nvidia Control Panel
  1. Launch Nvidia Control Panel and navigate to Manage 3D settings.
  2. Locate the Vulkan/OpengL present method (typically at the bottom).
  3. Change it to Prefer layered on DXGI Swapchain.
  4. Click on Apply to save the changes.

Game does not launch on Windows 10

Mandatory ASLR prevents game from running
  1. Open Windows Defender.
  2. In App & browser control, open Exploit protection settings.
  3. In Program settings, add an exception for Unreal.exe.
  4. Disable "Force randomization for images (Mandatory ASLR) in addition to DEP".

Brightness slider not working

Use DDrawCompat[9]
  1. Download DDrawCompat.
  2. Extract the contents from the .zip file into <path-to-game>\System\.

Low frame rate on Windows 10

Select 32-bit color depth in game video settings
Use DDrawCompat[10]
  1. Download DDrawCompat.
  2. Extract the contents from the .zip file into <path-to-game>\System\.

GUI scaling issues

Use Peixoto's patch (OpenGL and Direct3D 7, 8 or 9)[citation needed]
Use nGlide (Glide only) or dgVoodoo 2 (Direct3D or Glide)
nGlide or dgVoodoo 2 lets the user set a separate rendering resolution for 3D elements, while 2D elements are upscaled from the application-reported resolution.
Glide doesn't natively support widescreen.

Restore 3D sound

OpenAL soft or upgrading the version of AlAudio driver should be only needed in rare cases. The default install of 227i includes a working 3D Surround sound version of openAL that works on Windows 10 by default.
Use OpenAL Soft[11]
  1. Download and install the OldUnreal 227i Patch.
  2. Download the ALAudio for Unreal 227i mod, and copy all of its contents (not the folder) to <path-to-game>\System\.
  3. Open Unreal.ini and search for [ALAudio.ALAudioSubsystem]. Replace everything under that section with the new settings at the bottom of the post here. Replace UseHRTF=Autodetect with UseHRTF=Enable. (For headphone users only)
  4. Follow the instructions on this guide. Make sure to use OpenAL Soft 1.18.2 instead of later versions to create the .mhr files. During step 11, set the Period Count to 2.


OpenAL Soft 1.20.0 or higher crashes on startup.

Change difficulty mid-game

Use the console to change the difficulty and complete the current level[12]
  1. While the game is loaded in the save that one wants to change the difficulty of, open the console using the tilde key and type SwitchCoopLevel SavePath?difficulty=N, where SavePath is the absolute path to the save game (i.e. <path-to-game>\Save\Save1.usa. The relative path can also be used, where the base path is always InstallDir\System\. Thus, type ..\Save\Save1.usa to load save 1.
  2. The difficulty will only change once the level is completed. Make sure to save after the next level loads.


The difficulty levels range from 0-3: 0: Easy, 1: Medium, 2: Hard, and 3: Unreal.
With the OldUnreal patch 227i, two new difficulties are added and thus range from 0-5: 0: Easy, 1: Medium, 2: Hard, 3: Very Hard (the same as Unreal in the original unpatched version), 4: Unreal, and 5: Godlike.

Return to Na Pali not playing Audio Logs

If one holds any movement key and exits a level, the trigger does not work. On older computers with slower load times, one would have time to react to the loading screen and stop pressing input keys, but it can load fast enough on modern computers to where one may not release in time for the engine to still see that they have pressed the key.
Walk, exit in stealth mode or make a jump
  • Walk while crouched.
  • Just walk.
  • Alternatively, if one knows where the level exit triggers, one can do a very short jump that almost falls vertically to the floor, that is, without advancing too much, because a long jump does not work as it is as if one was running.
  • Use the UGoldFix, which implements various bug fixes (the given issue is addressed too).

Return to Na Pali: Inside UMS Prometheus: the next wave of Space Marines don't beam down

There is a bug in 227i which can cause the Marines waves not to trigger in the map Inside UMS Prometheus, softlocking the game (Unreal v226b doesn't have such a problem).
When the game type isn't DeathMatch and the level's name isn't "CrashSite2" (which is True for saved games), it assigns value False to the bIsPlayer property. If bIsPlayer=False and a Space Marine is gibbed by something powerful (e.g. by amplified ASMD shot or ASMD combo), then Destroy() is called and GotoState('Dying') will not change the state to 'Dying', because the object will be destroyed.
Kill the marines with a weapon that doesn't gib them like the Combat Assault Rifle[citation needed]
Use Unreal v226b[citation needed]
Use UGoldFix[citation needed]

Music peaking when using OpenAL 3D on Patch 227j

Change a setting in Unreal.ini
  1. Open Unreal.ini and search for [ALAudio.ALAudioSubsystem]. Change MusicAmplify=2 to MusicAmplify=1.

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 6, 7 Direct3D 6 was added with patch 218.[3] Direct3D 7 was introduced with patch 226, replacing Direct3D 6 support. To add in Direct3D 8 and 9 support, the unofficial OldUnreal 227 Patch is required. Direct3D 10 and 11 are downloadable mods.
OpenGL 1.2 Since patch 216.[3] OldUnreal 227 Patch adds OpenGL 2.0 support.
Glide 2.4 Glide (and PowerVR SGL) were only supported 3D acceleration options at launch.
Software renderer
ExecutablePPC16-bit 32-bit 64-bit Notes
OldUnreal 227 Patch is required for 64-bit support.
macOS (OS X)
OldUnreal 227 Patch is required for 64-bit support.
Mac OS (Classic)


Middleware Notes
Audio Galaxy Audio Use the OldUnreal 227 Patch for FMOD and OpenAL support.
Interface SDL SDL is for Linux only. It uses the V1 series.
Multiplayer GameSpy Not used with OldUnreal 227 Patch.[citation needed]


Various modifications, custom content such as characters, maps, plugins, and total-conversion mods can be downloaded and installed for Unreal. Like every game in the Unreal franchise, there's a ton of mods floating around the web on fansites like Oldunreal.

Unreal Evolution

A gameplay enhancement mod from the creator of GMDX. Aims to improve the singleplayer aspect of the game.
Requires the official OldUnreal Patch 227i.
Improved visual effects.
Improved enemy AI.
Rebalancing and bug fixes, with additional QOL improvements.
Active development.
Multiplayer not supported.

High Resolution Textures

Use the Unreal HD Textures for high resolution environment textures. Use the High Resolution Skins for higher quality character textures. A preview without ReShade is available here and a preview with ReShade in here.
Do not use these server-side. Not compatible with Glide, D3D 6/7, or software renderers.
Authentic to the original textures' artstyle, although some of the HD textures have increased saturation/are more colorful compared to the originals.
The quality of the textures can be configured to suit the computer's configuration.


Maps are custom levels that are created using mod tools or editors.

  • Unreal User Maps is a website hosted by Oldunreal. They host not only maps but the tools needed to make them.

Console commands

A complete list of console commands are listed here.

Running native Linux version

The fastest way possible to run the game on Linux natively is to use one of the Lutris scripts along with Arch Fix one, which fixes the audio issue. For open-source GPU drivers, it sets the Mesa compatibility to 1999. The script uses OldUnreal's Linux build which can be acquired only by installing the patch through Wine, but in Lutris case it is not necessary as it's included in their repository.

However, as the description notes, the following line FMODDevices has to be changed to 27 in the [ALAudio.ALAudioSubsystem] section inside <path-to-game>\System\UnrealLinux.ini, when changing the settings in-game. If the music does not work, get the 32-bit esound package (Sometimes it can be called esd) from the package manager or download one, run esd in Terminal once, then change FMODOutput to ESD in the same section.

The FAQ for playing Unreal 227 on Linux is on the OldUnreal Wiki.

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 95
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 166 MHz
System memory (RAM) 16 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 100 MB
Video card (GPU) 2 MB of VRAM
DirectX 5 compatible
Mac OS
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 7.6
Processor (CPU) PowerPC 603e
System memory (RAM) 32 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD)
Other 2x CD-ROM drive


  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 Notes regarding Steam Play (Linux) data: