Civilization III

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
Sid Meier's Civilization III
Sid Meier's Civilization III cover
Firaxis Games
Mac OS (Classic) Westlake Interactive
macOS (OS X) Westlake Interactive
2K Games
Mac OS Aspyr Media
macOS (OS X) Aspyr Media
Release dates
Windows October 30, 2001
Mac OS (Classic) October 30, 2001
macOS (OS X) 2006
Civilization III guide at StrategyWiki
Civilization III at Wikipedia
Civilization 1991
Civilization II 1996
Civilization III 2001
Civilization IV 2005
CivCity: Rome 2006
Civilization IV: Colonization 2008
Civilization V 2010
Civilization: Beyond Earth 2014
Civilization VI 2016

Key points

Non-Steam versions can be migrated to Steam by contacting 2K Support.[1]
Online server browser for non-Steam versions has stopped working due to GameSpy services being shut down.[2]

General information

Official game site
Civilization Wiki - A detailed wiki for all Civilization games and their spin offs
Apolyton Civilization Site's Civ III section - A huge forum dedicated to all Civilization games and their spin offs. Modifications for the game can be found here
Civilization Fanatics Center's Civilization III Page 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)
SafeDisc DRM[Note 1] or SecuROM DRM disc check (varies by release).
Mac OS
Green Man Gaming
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Civilization III Complete
Icon overlay.png
Civilization III Complete

Downloadable content (DLC) and expansions

Name Notes
Civilization III: Play the World Required for multiplayer support.
Civilization III: Conquests Contains all content from Play the World.

Version differences[edit]

Civilization III Complete is a complete version with both expansion packs.
Gold Edition contains Civilization III and Play The World.
Play the World adds additional civilizations, game modes, and multiplayer support.
Conquests adds additional civilizations and scenarios to the game, as well as new government types and other features.
The Game of the Year Edition contains the original game with a bonus CD containing additional maps and behind-the-scenes videos.

Essential improvements[edit]

Skip intro videos[edit]

Delete/rename video files[citation needed]
  1. Go to <path-to-game>\Art\Movies\
  2. Delete or rename CivComplete.bik and intro.bik.
  3. Repeat for expansion folders, if applicable.


Video file loaded depends on the game version and expansions used.

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\Conquests
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X)
Linux (Proton) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/3910/pfx/[Note 2]

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\Conquests\Saves
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X)
Linux (Proton) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/3910/pfx/[Note 2]

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

System Native Notes
GOG Galaxy
Steam Cloud

Video settings[edit]

In-game options menu.
In-game options menu.

Widescreen resolution[edit]

Set KeepRes mode[citation needed]
  1. Open the configuration file (Civilization3.ini or Conquests\conquests.ini).
  2. Add the line KeepRes=1
  3. Save your changes. The game will now run at the desktop resolution as borderless fullscreen.


Set windowed mode[citation needed]
  1. Open the configuration file (Civilization3.ini or Conquests\conquests.ini).
  2. Add the line KeepRes=1
  3. Add the line Video Mode=1152
  4. Save your changes.
Video Mode is the horizontal window size, with the vertical height calculated based on the 4:3 aspect ratio.
The game window will have no border.
The game area can't be resized after the game is launched - doing so causes graphic corruption and may crash the game.

Input settings[edit]

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

Audio settings[edit]

Audio options Native Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
No spoken text.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost


Language UI Audio Sub Notes


Civilization III: Play the World is required for multiplayer support

Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
Local play
8 Hot seat
LAN play
8 Versus
Online play
8 Versus
Online server browser no longer works in non-Steam versions. Steam version has been updated to fix this.[1][2]
Asynchronous multiplayer
Possible option. Used by default.

Connection types

Type Native Notes
Direct IP
Removed from the Steam version.[1]


Protocol Port(s) and/or port range(s)
TCP 3783, 6500, 6667, 28900, 29900, 29901
UDP 2302-2400, 6500, 6515, 13139, 27900
Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) support status is unknown.

Issues fixed[edit]

Compatibility settings[edit]

Issues with the game may be corrected with compatibility settings. For the Steam version go to <path-to-game>\Conquests\ and right click on Civ3Conquests.exe. Select properties and set the compatibility settings. This can cause serious performance issues on windows 10.

No music or sound effects during diplomacy[edit]

This is an error caused by a Windows 10 update limiting sound to two channels.

Install IndirectSound[5][6]
  1. Download and extract IndirectSound.
  2. Copy the two files, dsound.dll and dsound.ini.
  3. Paste into <path-to-game>\Conquests\.

Other information[edit]


Technical specs Supported Notes
OpenGL 1
64-bit executable


Middleware Notes
Audio Miles Sound System
Cutscenes Bink Video
Multiplayer GameSpy Removed in Steam update.

System requirements[edit]

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 98 ME, 2000, XP
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium II 400 MHz
System memory (RAM) 128 MB 256 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 1.8 GB
Video card (GPU) DirectX 9.0b compatible


  1. SafeDisc retail DRM does not work on Windows 10[3] and is disabled by default on Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1 when the KB3086255 update is installed.[4]
  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>/3910/ in addition to or instead of this directory. The app ID (3910) may differ in some cases. Treat backslashes as forward slashes. See the glossary page for details.