Descent

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
Descent
Descent cover
Developers
Parallax Software
Mac OS (Classic) Interplay Entertainment
Publishers
Interplay Entertainment
Release dates
DOS December 31, 1994
Windows March 17, 1995
Mac OS (Classic) 1995
macOS (OS X) October 26, 2012[1]
Descent at Wikipedia
Descent
Descent 1994
Descent II 1996
Descent: FreeSpace – The Great War 1998
Descent 3 1999
FreeSpace 2 1999
Descent (2018) 2018

Key points

Engine is open source with modern multi-platform ports available. It is highly recommended to use either DXX-Rebirth or D2X-XL.

General information

Official game site
GOG.com Community Discussions for game series
GOG.com Support Page
Steam Community Discussions
Descent source code download page

Availability[edit]

Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Retail
DRM details are not known
DOS
Windows
Mac OS
GOG.com
DRM-free
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Steam
Icon overlay.png
Windows

Version differences[edit]

The classic Mac OS version was substantially improved during the porting process. It features high-res (640x480 vs DOS's 320x200) menus, backgrounds, fonts & briefing images. It also had studio quality audio tracks. This version would later be used as the base for the PlayStation version, which additionally had intro videos (verses slides) and simple lighting effects. DXX-Rebirth supports the Mac OS data files though Windows users may require these patches.

Downloadable content (DLC) and expansions

The PlayStation version included additional multiplayer maps ("anarchy levels"). Although porting them to the PC would theoretically be simple, no attempt has be made.
Name Notes
Levels of the World
DOS
Mac OS
Anniversary's bonus levels (no official name given) Also included with The Definitive Collection
DOS
In addition to the add ons above, Interplay had many map making competitions which some players considered to be the game's unofficial 3rd DLC. Although no official compilation has been made, a user on gog.com has made one of his own with almost all competition entries included. It can be downloaded here.

Essential improvements[edit]

Source ports[edit]

There are four (five technically) source ports available for Descent. These ports are major upgrades to the game and will improve almost all aspects of the game. Most notably, these ports support Windows, OS X, and Linux natively without the need for DOSBox.
Name Description
DXX-Rebirth Focused mostly on maintaining original gameplay and being authentic. Feature List
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Linux
D2X-XL Focused mostly on graphical and gameplay improvements. Changelog/Feature List
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Linux
DXX-Retro Based on DXX-Rebirth. Focused mostly on improving multiplayer. Source & Changelog
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Project D2X Very old source port, hasn't been updated in a long time. This project was the base for DXX-Rebirth & XL
Windows
macOS (OS X)
Linux
DOS

Game data[edit]

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

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
DOS <path-to-game>\
Windows <path-to-game>\
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X)
Linux (Proton) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/273570/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
DOS <path-to-game>\
Windows <path-to-game>\
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X)
Linux (Proton) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/273570/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

System Native Notes
GOG Galaxy
Steam Cloud

Video settings[edit]

In-game video settings.
In-game video settings.
Graphics settings (GOG.com version)
Graphics settings (GOG.com version)
Graphics option Option WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
A source port is required. See Source ports.
Multi-monitor
Use D1X-Rebirth (D2X-XL has incorrect scaling).
Ultra-widescreen
Use D1X-Rebirth (D2X-XL has incorrect scaling).
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
Windowed
Toggle with Alt+ Enter (when using DOSBox).
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
A source port is required. See Source ports.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
A source port is required. See Source ports.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
A source port is required. See Source ports.
60 FPS
Capped at 50 FPS;[2] for 60 FPS see Source ports.
120+ FPS
A source port is required. See Source ports.

Input settings[edit]

In-game key map settings.
In-game key map settings.

Audio settings[edit]

Audio options Native Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
Subtitles
No Audio Dialogue to subtitle.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Can be enabled through DOSBox's priority settings (use the pause emulation option).

Localizations

Language UI Audio Sub Notes
English

Network[edit]

Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play
8 Versus, Co-op
Online play
8 Versus, Co-op

Connection types

VR support[edit]

3D modes Native Notes
Native 3D
Use D2X-XL (anaglyph, 3D TV).[3]
Headsets Native Notes
HTC Vive
This game might be playable with the Revive Compatibility Layer (compatibility list).
Oculus Rift
Use D2X-XL.[3]
OSVR
Windows Mixed Reality
This game might be playable with the Revive Compatibility Layer (compatibility list).
Devices Native Notes
Tracked motion controllers
Traditional controller Partial support See Input settings for details.
Keyboard/Mouse
Play area Native Notes
Seated

Other information[edit]

API[edit]

Technical specs Supported Notes
OpenGL 1.0 Requires a source port or official OpenGL patch from interplay. Also is a selectable rendering option in DOSBox.
Glide
Requires an official patch from interplay. Also require a fork of DOSBox with Glide support if being played in DOSBox.
Software renderer
Default mode in source ports and only mode without graphics patch from interplay
DOS video modes VGA, SVGA
Shader Model support unknown Requires D2X-XL
64-bit executable
Requires a source port

Middleware[edit]

Middleware Notes
Audio Human Machine Interface (HMI) audio drivers

System requirements[edit]

DOS
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 5.0 6.2
Processor (CPU) Intel 386 33 MHz Intel 486 33 MHz
System memory (RAM) 4 MB 8 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 25 MB
Video card (GPU) VGA SVGA
Mac OS
Minimum
Operating system (OS) System 7 (classic)
Processor (CPU) PowerPC 601 90 MHz
System memory (RAM) 8 MB (3 can be virtual memory)
Hard disk drive (HDD) 18 MB
Video card (GPU) 640x480 display with 256 colors
Windows
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) XP, Vista, 7, 8 (runs in DOSBox)
Processor (CPU) 1 GHz 1.4 GHz
System memory (RAM) 512 MB 1 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 25 MB
Video card (GPU) DirectX 7 compatible DirectX 9 compatible
macOS (OS X)
Minimum
Operating system (OS) 10.6.8 "Snow Leopard" (runs in DOSBox)
Processor (CPU) Intel Core Duo 2 GHz
System memory (RAM) 1 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD)
Video card (GPU) 64 MB of VRAM

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 File/folder structure within this directory reflects the path(s) used for Windows game data (use Wine regedit to access Windows registry paths). The app ID (273570) may differ in some cases.

References