A brief introduction to the problem:
After spending nearly three hours trying to play the game today (this included installing mods I downloaded before I "broke" the STEX), I loaded the game to discover it was not displaying correctly. Instead of the image being centered on my nice wide monitor screen, it was scrunched and badly misaligned into the lower left corner and much of the left edge of the UI (user interface) was cut off. Immediately I went through various diagnostics in an attempt to determine if the problem was caused by my hardware configuration, a software conflict, or a bit of both. Here's the steps I did...
I took a screen shot - this is the first best diagnostic tool you can do to help isolate the cause of a visual issue. For those of you not familiar with this method, let me explain why this works well: If it is a software conflict, your screen shot will be exactly the same as what is on the monitor. In most normal cases, this includes any distortion, discoloration, and other graphics issues. Without getting too nerdy, there are multiple ways to get screen capture utilities which is essentially what a screen shot is. Personally, I use Microsoft's OneDrive screen capture utility and the internal one within Steam, but Maxis included one within SimCity 4. There are other programs that do the same function as well... All each of these programs do is at the moment activated, they will capture an image being rendered by your computer's graphics card and save it as an image file. This is a very important diagnostic tool and can assist you in determining what you need to do to get the game working the way it should. In the case of legacy games (games that are over 10 years old or are no longer supported by their original publisher), there are instances where software conflicts will have all the characteristics of a hardware conflict - and the Electronic Arts/SimCity franchise is one such publisher. When I was really into gaming within the SimCity franchise (beginning with SimCity 2k, SimCity 3000, and later, SimCity 4), I spent a lot of time helping others make their systems work with the games. I learned from EA Tech Support in 2004 (The Sims), that all Maxis titles have a set of video/graphics dlls that are not changeable and can often mimic hardware errors and should be treated as such. Having two ex-wives and a few nights sleep since then, all I remember is it has something to do with the rendering aspects of the graphics software within these games. If it is a hardware conflict, your screenshot will appear totally different than what is on the monitor. And of the two, this is actually the easiest to begin the diagnosis process. In what I was experiencing, what I was seeing and what was on the screenshot were NOT the same. While the monitor was displaying the main screen of SimCity 4, it was offset to the left by 1/3 and down by the same proportion. But here's what the screen capture indicated:
The image resolution, as you can see, is close to being a near square and is the default Maxis setting for SimCity 4. While the game was made for the top-of-the-line monitors of its day, there has been tremendous development in monitors since those early days at the turn of the century. As seen in the linked screen shot, the default screen settings are 1024 x 768. This was the reason why the display had a scrunched appearance (first problem identified ).
One of the problems I was having is the ACER monitor (second problem identified ). ACER monitors have a nasty habit if having to be reset (turn off, count to ten, turn back on) because of what I call screen drift - the display seeming to fall off the edge of the monotor's field of vision. So I have had a lot of experience with this in other applications besides games. This is one of the reasons I decided to handle the issue as a hardware conflict rather than a software conflict. Here are the steps to solve this issue if you are using an ACER monitor:
Update the ACER monitor driver through the Windows 10 Device Manager panel. Chances are Windows 10 will tell you your driver is up-to-date. Update your graphics card driver (this is a good practice to do anyway). Within your graphics card configuration settings, there should be a tool that allows you to set options by program. Open this tool/window. Intel's 630 graphics series drivers allows for the user to change some settings. Most graphics cards do. And most offer the option to override the application's default settings. Select this option and any option that allows for hardware (graphics card) based centering. This will force the Acer monitor to accept the centered output of the graphics card, regardless of what parameters it is receiving from the Maxis software. Check to see that your Steam is updated (normally Steam does a good job of keeping itself updated). Once Steam is updated, go into the PROPERTIES of SimCity 4 and add the following line to the startup options: -CustomResolution:enabled -r1600x900x32 (1600 is the width, 900 is the height, and 32 is the color setting). Close the startup options dialog box, then close the properties box. Here's a screenshot of what you should have:
That command in the startup options will force SimCity4 (or whatever Maxis game you are running) to force these display parameters on the game. Both this launch option and the change in graphics hardware settings to override application settings will work together to resolve the video issue with ACER monitors.
Here's a sample of the improvement I was able to achieve (once I quit complaining about having to do everything the hard way):
Please notice none of the default resolutions are selected (since this has been done through the advanced start-up options in Steam). The software rendering normally would be the rendering files included within the game - but in the Intel graphics driver software, the option to override the application settings will allow the graphics hardware and drivers to do the work of the Maxis dlls (or at least that's the way I remember it). I know for the "old hats" of this forum, this may not be new information... but if you're new at this game and are struggling with this issue, hopefully this will help.
So much has happened with Cities Skylines that I decided to start over on a new project. This will be a US/California themed city with lots of other influences. Focus will be on functionality and realism and a lot of the major detailing will be quick and sloppy with the exception of some parts. This will be a metropolis and will challenge the limits of the game, and to do so it involves some work in the asset editor and some other custom solutions to tackle the limits.
This is the start of Emory Hills!
Hello friends, i need your help with this project.
I made a 3d model in seketchup, i export the model in 3Ds, but when importing the model in Gmax BAT i throw error and it closes.
please help me. Could pass the project to an expert modeler to help me export to Gmax. The Pc that i use for my projects does not have the necessary requierements to finish this big ptoject. (1gb Ram) HELP Please and thanks
Lunar New Year sale on GoG (I forgot to notify you) is nice, but I have a problem. My parents have credit cards but they probably don't allow me to buy SimCity 4 (or even the series) even the price is cheap. I want original SimCity 4 and (if possible) the series. I've some money on my school bank (no, not ordinary bank account). Can you help me solve this problem? Can you give me and other people SimCity 4 or even the series?
I've questions regarding Mayor Rating:
Why Maxis named Mayor Rating as such? Why not Happiness (although it's available in the translation) index? Why Maxis didn't implemented detailed Mayor Rating system in SimCity 4 like SimCity (2013) and Bhutan's GNH (yes, Bhutanese gov uses GNH to measure it's populations instead of just focusing on GDP) and implemented it as Citizen Opinion Poll? I think SC4's MR isn't implemented realistically. Thank you.
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