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I know GOG does not sell this version, but this forum is a pretty good place to mention fixes for this version of the game seeing as Earthworm Jim fans are likely to visit here. Solutions may be applicable to the version sold by GOG.

What is the Windows 95 Special Edition?

Earthworm Jim for Windows 95 is a direct port of the popular Sega CD version using the Exodus Video Gaming Technologies created by Kinesoft Development. The technology consists of highly optimized programming libraries that allow for the conversion of console games to Windows 95 primarily using 486 assembly code for the main game logic and C++ for the shell... blah, blah, blah. Okay, enough of the technobabble. Here's the story. Activision wanted to make some really cool games for Windows 95 because... well, there have never been any cool 2D side-scrolling action games for Windows. So, because the guys at Microsoft made Windows 95 a gaming platform in addition to an operating system, Activision hired this company in Chicago called Kinesoft Development, who had just developed this really great technology for porting console games to Windows 95. Still raking in the dough for its popular game Pitfall: The Mayan Adventure, Activision then released a Windows 95 version that was not only able to fully capture the speed and gameplay of the original but contained lots of enhancements. So, after seeing what could be done in the new operating system, Activision called their buddies at Shiny Entertainment and licensed the rights to do a Windows 95 version of Earthworm Jim... which accounts for why you are reading this now. Anyway, like Pitfall, all of the speed, gameplay and fun of the original has been captured AND a bunch of enhancments have been added to make your gaming experience more pleasurable. So, on behalf of Activision, Kinesoft and Shiny... HAVE FUN!

-- 256 color graphics! The backgrounds and animations have been painstakingly updated from 64 to 256 colors. That's a whopping 192 extra colors that provide for PC-quality graphics!

-- CD-quality music! The game features a CD-quality soundtrack that contains over 50 minutes of cool music by the guys at Tommy Tallarico Studios. You can even listen to the music on your standard CD player. So, do Tommy a favor and pop in the Earthworm Jim CD whenever you go cruising down your local boulevard.

-- A new weapon! Help Jim blast his way through all of the levels using a new homing rocket not included in the cartridge versions.

-- A new level! Manuever Jim through an entire new level complete with new enemies and hidden goodies not included in the cartridge versions.

-- An Earthworm Jim Desktop Theme! Customize your Windows 95 desktop with this really cool Microsoft Plus! desktop theme that was created by the ever-productive Tin Guerrero. Now you can install Earthworm Jim animating cursors, sounds, icons and wallpaper... which will automatically make your computer better than anyone else's.

-- As you progress through the game the levels will become unlocked in a menu for you to choose from, eliminating some of the need for passwords.
Problem 1:
Sound FX doesn't work: To resolve this, switch the games EXE file to either Windows 98/ME or Windows 95 compatibility mode. When the game starts up you will get a warning about a missing dll file, you can ignore this warning.

Problem 2:
After fixing Problem 1 the game freezes on the Title Screen: To resolve this issue download and replace the games wail32.dll file with this one (while the game is closed): https://mega.nz/#!Xx5gAZSB!dJHSYEAvqMayoO2t2YfTAYfV3IM9gD7huLyvEos4-CE

Problem 3:
Fullscreen doesn't work: No known solution for 64bit Windows. For 32bit Windows you can copy the dispdib.dll file that I included in the above download link, to the games installation folder (place it alongside the games EXE file).

Problem 4:
Visual Stutter: Fullscreen mode or disabling the Windows DWM should resolve this issue (Neither is possible under 64bit Windows 10).
Post edited August 11, 2018 by Franpa
Problem 2) might be the issue why I cannot play Pitfall - The Mayan Adventure with SFX and soundtrack.
But the last time I tried the game, I used a virtual Win98 and I was still not able to play the game with SFX and soundtrack. May the same wail32.dll here work also for Pitfall? It would be awesome if yes. I would love it to play this awesome game again. ... and to play Earthworm Jim in the Win95 Edition again. :)
dam I was just playing the SNES version & remembered the Win95 version being way better, shame it doesn't work on modern PCs

its a shame 2D windows 95 games seem to be lost to the ages as other ports like Sonic & Knuckles & Mortal Kombat Trilogy were so much better on PC compared to the console versions
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Franpa: Problem 3)
Fullscreen doesn't work. No known solution for x64 Windows. For x86 Windows you can copy the dispdib.dll file that I included in the above download link, to the games installation folder (place it alongside the games EXE file).

Problem 4)
Visual stutter. Fullscreen mode or disabling the Windows DWM should resolve this issue (Neither is possible under 64bit Windows 10).
This, I knew it had to do with the dispdib.dll

Too bad I've got Windows 10 64 bit D: and I can't play in fullscreen.

Please let me know if you ever found a fix for 64 bit systems too! Thanks.



And why doesn't GOG sell this version? The MS-DOS port sucked badly.
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Kyle07: Problem 2) might be the issue why I cannot play Pitfall - The Mayan Adventure with SFX and soundtrack.
But the last time I tried the game, I used a virtual Win98 and I was still not able to play the game with SFX and soundtrack. May the same wail32.dll here work also for Pitfall? It would be awesome if yes. I would love it to play this awesome game again. ... and to play Earthworm Jim in the Win95 Edition again. :)
I am unsure. wail32.dll fixes a crash that occurs in conjunction with the audio fix.
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Lucasjodokast: dam I was just playing the SNES version & remembered the Win95 version being way better, shame it doesn't work on modern PCs

its a shame 2D windows 95 games seem to be lost to the ages as other ports like Sonic & Knuckles & Mortal Kombat Trilogy were so much better on PC compared to the console versions
Most games designed for Windows 3.00 through to Windows 95c will still work under Windows 10. Games designed for Windows 3.00 through to Windows 95c will however require the 32bit version of Windows 10 because 64bit versions of any Windows O/S excludes support for 16bit software and 16bit DLL files. (Windows 95 introduces support for 32bit software and so most (not all) games designed for Windows 95, 98 and Windows ME will work fine under 32bit & 64bit Windows barring any driver issues)
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Franpa: Problem 3)
Fullscreen doesn't work. No known solution for x64 Windows. For x86 Windows you can copy the dispdib.dll file that I included in the above download link, to the games installation folder (place it alongside the games EXE file).

Problem 4)
Visual stutter. Fullscreen mode or disabling the Windows DWM should resolve this issue (Neither is possible under 64bit Windows 10).
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Sami1999: This, I knew it had to do with the dispdib.dll

Too bad I've got Windows 10 64 bit D: and I can't play in fullscreen.

Please let me know if you ever found a fix for 64 bit systems too! Thanks.

And why doesn't GOG sell this version? The MS-DOS port sucked badly.
The dispdib.dll file is a 16bit DLL file & is required for Fullscreen mode to work. 64bit versions of any Windows O/S can not load 16bit programs and DLL files. I don't think Microsoft ever made a 32bit or 64bit version of this DLL file.
Post edited August 12, 2018 by Franpa
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Franpa:
Well, that's depressing. I guess playing thee definitive version is impossible.

Tried VMware and Virtual and both ran EWJ like shat. VMware had accurate colors but lagged like hell. Virtual box had only 256 colors and lagged like hell.
Also, if you want to restore the ability to open Help files in Windows 10, replace the winhlp.exe file located in "C:\Windows\" with this copy https://mega.nz/winhlp32.exe that was taken from a previous version of Windows. I still have no clue why Microsoft nonsensically replaced the program with a stub that opens Microsoft Edge/Internet Explorer to a useless search results screen.
Post edited September 11, 2017 by Franpa
Thanks for the fixes!

Is there a way to play the game in a higher resolution then what it officially supports? I tried both dgVoodoo and nGlide and neither work sadly.
I recently got a secondhand copy of the original disc, since I wanted to be sure to have the original music. I eventually got lucky and got the game to play almost perfectly. This method has been tested on both Windows 7 64-bit and Windows 10 64-bit. Most of this info was gleaned from other sources (especially OP), but I wanted to put together the exact steps I did, for anyone else who may have the original disc and who wants to play this.

GETTING STARTED
1. Insert CD in drive and keep it there!
2. Explore contents of CD--it likely will not AutoRun. Your version of the disc may have extra bloatware (mine has an AOL trial). Ignore everything except ASSETS folder and WORMLOAD.EXE. You do NOT need to run an installer!
3. Copy entire ASSETS folder from disc to somewhere on your hard drive.
4. Copy WORMLOAD.EXE from disc and paste it INSIDE your copy of ASSETS.
5. Download the updated version of WAIL32.DLL (see links on this thread) and replace the version in your copy of ASSETS with the newer version.
6. Set WORMLOAD.EXE for Windows98/Me compatibility settings (Windows 95 and others may work).
7. Create a shortcut to WORMLOAD.EXE, if desired.
8. Run WORMLOAD.EXE Click Play. If you get a video clip (e.g. Activision) first, press Space to skip.
9. I usually get two warnings--one about 256 color mode and one about dispdib.dll. Click OK on both.
10. The game will now look for the CD in your drive to ensure it can play the music tracks. If the disc is not still in your drive, the game will exit itself.
11. Open the Sound settings. Make sure Sound Effects is selected (may be greyed out if you didn't follow Step 6). Make sure CD Music is selected.
12. Check the Joystick/Keyboard settings, for good measure. I recommend using JoyToKey in conjunction with the Keyboard settings tab. Alternatively, I have managed to get a DirectInput joystick to work, by doing the following:
a. Go to Control Panel -> Devices and Printers
b. Right-click your joystick, go to "Game Controller settings"
c. Click Advanced...
d. Set your joystick as the "Preferred device" for older programs
e. "Enable joystick" should now be selectable in the EWJ menu
13. Game will not go fullscreen without crashing, but you can drag the window to your desired size.
14. Enjoy!

OTHER TIPS
1. You can set compatibility settings for WORM.EXE and run that instead of WORMLOAD.EXE. This may even be preferable since it completely skips the Activision intro.
2. Pause is mapped to the Pause/Break keyboard key. Another reason to use JoyToKey!
3. Music does not properly loop after the track is played out. To get around this, briefly pause and unpause the game.
4. You can open the .hlp file on Windows 7 with an update, or Windows 10 with a third-party fix, but there's not much to see (most of it is just text, and the few images are low-res black and white). You're better off Googling for a pdf manual of the Sega CD version.
Post edited September 15, 2018 by bboone91
I've been playing this version for years, and it's worked like a charm. Best version of the game, in fact.

There's some misinformation in this thread; it seems the exact way of getting it to work isn't super commonly-known, which is a shame, because when you do get it working, it's the damn-near perfect version of the game, so here's what you do...

1. Copy the ASSETS folder from the CD onto your hard drive.
2. Only ever run the game from WORM.EXE within that ASSETS folder. Otherwise, the game will still load all its files from the CD.
3. Replace the WAIL32.DLL in the ASSETS folder. This fixes various sound-related issues in the game.
4. Run the game in compatibility mode for Windows 98 / ME. This fixes everything replacing that DLL didn't fix.
5. Ignore the "could not find dispdib" and a few other error messages that will pop up whenever you start the game; they're irrelevant.
6. If you get any other issues, try running it as an administrator.

And that's it. I've tried this on a good few PCs, all within the Windows 7 to Windows 10 range, all 64-bit, and I've never had a single bit of trouble, and people I've talked this all through with have had similar experiences... Always ran smooth, never had any issues in sound, gameplay, graphics, whatever. The game won't start without the CD in the drive due to DRM, but it reads the music from the CD anyway, so taking it out is a stupid idea.

Only issue I've ever run into playing this version of the game is this: The music stops playing after one loop. Easily fixed, though; just click outside the game window, then click within it to return focus to the game, and press a button to unpause it. Music will restart, and you're all good.

For the life of me, I can't figure out why GOG don't sell this version; unlike the sluggish DOS version that's missing a level, has graphical glitches, and has some kind of vendetta against controllers, this one runs perfectly on modern Windows, it's the Special Edition with not only all the original levels, but a couple of bonus ones, and a couple of extra things in the original levels... once you've put these little fixes in, it's just fantastic. Almost perfect.
If GOG could figure out a way to get around the DRM (you can't play without the CD in the drive), and get the music playing from the hard drive rather than the CD, it would be truly perfect.

Though, I suppose then we'd still be saddled with the awful DOS version of Earthworm Jim 2, which would seem even worse in comparison to this excellent version of the first one. Though they could always try emulating the Saturn/PS1 port, which runs great, has CD music like the DOS version (and the Windows, DOS, and Mega-CD versions of the first game), and has some nice updated graphics and such, and a few extra questions in the quiz.

Then I suppose that would only leave Earthworm Jim 3D. 'Course it runs fine, there's only the problem of the game itself... ;)
Post edited February 08, 2019 by Robo4900