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According to GOGalaxy, GK3 is compatible. First I got the no CD error. Downloading the new exe fixed that, but now whenever it attempts to change scenes (like going into the bathroom or even opening the window,) the game locks up so completely that I have to hard reset the computer.
Feexed it. I uninstalled the GoGalaxy version, then downloaded directly from the site. I once again got the CD error, but the new exe replacement worked. With the GK3Launcher and compatibility mode on both the GK3 and the launcher set to WinXP, 16 bit color, and run as admin, I can now run in Win10, in windowed mode, with no issues whatsoever.
What works fine for me, at least in full screen, is admin mode & the disable scaling option checked--everything else is standard Win10x64, including 32-bit color support.
You need the 16-bit color mode setting if you want to run it into windowed mode, otherwise it's not needed.

The problem the game has is that it uses a DirectDraw in addition to Direct3D, and as of such may need the DXMaximizedWindowedMode compatibility setting [url=https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc722305(v=ws.10).aspx](more info here)[/url]. This setting is part of most compatibility modes Windows has, including the Windows XP or 7 ones. If you use any of these, the game should stop having issues.

Alternatively, I've experienced better performance by creating a manual compatibility database using Microsoft Application Compatibility Toolkit containing DXMaximizedWindowedMode, DXPrimaryEmulation (an undocumented setting that can alleviate performance for fullscreen applications using DDraw, see here) and ForceDisplayMode with ,,16 (the "16-bit color option") instead of going for the full compatibility mode.
Post edited November 18, 2015 by ChrisTX
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ChrisTX: You need the 16-bit color mode setting if you want to run it into windowed mode, otherwise it's not needed.

The problem the game has is that it uses a DirectDraw in addition to Direct3D, and as of such may need the DXMaximizedWindowedMode compatibility setting [url=https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc722305(v=ws.10).aspx](more info here)[/url]. This setting is part of most compatibility modes Windows has, including the Windows XP or 7 ones. If you use any of these, the game should stop having issues.

Alternatively, I've experienced better performance by creating a manual compatibility database using Microsoft Application Compatibility Toolkit containing DXMaximizedWindowedMode, DXPrimaryEmulation (an undocumented setting that can alleviate performance for fullscreen applications using DDraw, see here) and ForceDisplayMode with ,,16 (the "16-bit color option") instead of going for the full compatibility mode.
I actually run pretty much all of my dosbox games in direct3d mode, now. Its software mode handles things better than ddraw (which is partially deprecated by d3d these days, it seems, anyway.) I actually prefer full-screen mode which, in my case, is just an aspect-corrected 1920x1200--along with an hq2x shader which cleans up the graphics a bit, too. I actually use dosbox svn-daum and run the 64-bit version of dosbox...it's interesting as that also works well in every dosbox game I have...all of the GOG db games work fine with it. It's fun just to see what can be done with these old games, I'm sure you'll agree...;)
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waltc: I actually run pretty much all of my dosbox games in direct3d mode, now. Its software mode handles things better than ddraw (which is partially deprecated by d3d these days, it seems, anyway.) I actually prefer full-screen mode which, in my case, is just an aspect-corrected 1920x1200--along with an hq2x shader which cleans up the graphics a bit, too. I actually use dosbox svn-daum and run the 64-bit version of dosbox...it's interesting as that also works well in every dosbox game I have...all of the GOG db games work fine with it. It's fun just to see what can be done with these old games, I'm sure you'll agree...;)
You should, but only Gabriel Knight 1 and 2 are DOS games, GK3 is a Windows game, so you're stuck with the DirectDraw / Direct3D mixture the game uses.

SVN-Daum is ace though, but the latest build had sound issues (sound went mute random) for me in GK2, so I've used vanilla DOSBox SVN for it. In general, I love the Direct3D renderer for DOSBox, but I don't always use hq filters, sometimes I prefer something softer like advanced MAME or the xBRZ one that Daum ships, too.
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ChrisTX: You should, but only Gabriel Knight 1 and 2 are DOS games, GK3 is a Windows game, so you're stuck with the DirectDraw / Direct3D mixture the game uses.
Yep, GK3 is using an odd engine, no doubt about it. If you succeed in setting up a decently high resolution the game really chuggs--so much so that I settle for 1024x768...!
SVN-Daum is ace though, but the latest build had sound issues (sound went mute random) for me in GK2, so I've used vanilla DOSBox SVN for it. In general, I love the Direct3D renderer for DOSBox, but I don't always use hq filters, sometimes I prefer something softer like advanced MAME or the xBRZ one that Daum ships, too.
Yes, I have the occasional drop out of the audio in GK2. But it's now mostly alleviated.

I found that by changing the resources the game allocates for my dosbox sb16 config to irq=5 dma=1 hdma=7, that the game loads much, much faster. I previously had it set to irq=7 dma=1 hdma=7, and the game took a long time to load as it configured itself for my settings, and the audio drop outs were much worse (game seems hard coded for irq=5 in the DACBLAST.DRV, and the setup program, install.exe, doesn't allow for selecting IRQ & DMA manually.) I also lowered the cycles the game uses from 16000 to 10000, which seems to have helped (surely better than the 3000 cycles the auto setting provides for), and changed the resource.cfg settings to minMemory= 3600k and smartdrv = NO, which may or may not have helped--haven't really decided on those two...;) Anyway, the dropouts have all but ceased atm. In resource.cfg I also use general midi drv for music along with soundfonts through Coolsoft's Virtual Midi synth (which I'll bet you are using, too...;) Everyone on Win10 who games should be using it, imo.)

Also, I found, as you report, that the Jan 2015 svn-daum dosbox does indeed cause problems with audio in some older games, so I took the Jan 2014 svn-daum files version (which didn't have that problem AFAIK) and overwrote them with the Jan 2015 svn-daum version--and that cleared up the audio in svn-daum for me!

You know, I'm so lazy I never bothered to specifically isolate which files from the Jan '14 version it is that correct the sound problem...;) Ah, well...!

Maybe I should try the 32-bit dosbox.exe version of svn-daum...Hmmm...wonder if that's all it takes to keep the sound from dropping out at all...! It'd be just like me to have been chasing my tail here...!
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waltc: I found that by changing the resources the game allocates for my dosbox sb16 config to irq=5 dma=1 hdma=7, that the game loads much, much faster. I previously had it set to irq=7 dma=1 hdma=7, and the game took a long time to load as it configured itself for my settings, and the audio drop outs were much worse (game seems hard coded for irq=5 in the DACBLAST.DRV, and the setup program, install.exe, doesn't allow for selecting IRQ & DMA manually.)
Why did you set High DMA to 7 though? A sound blaster is usually with their 8-bit DMA on 1 and 16-bit DMA to 5. The standard DOSBox setting is IRQ 7, DMA 1, HDMA 5 - but IRQ 5 and 7 are both common choices for soundcards. You can add audioIRQ=7 to resource.cfg, that was apparently a valid setting for GK1, I suppose it still is for GK2 but I haven't checked myself. Either way, IRQ 5 and 7 seem to have the same loading times for me.
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waltc: I also lowered the cycles the game uses from 16000 to 10000, which seems to have helped (surely better than the 3000 cycles the auto setting provides for), and changed the resource.cfg settings to minMemory= 3600k and smartdrv = NO, which may or may not have helped--haven't really decided on those two...;) Anyway, the dropouts have all but ceased atm.
Fixing the cycles resolved the problem for me as well but I had little reason to go with that, as standard DOSBox + OpenGLnb and a scaler did everything I needed.

minMemory shouldn't change anything and smartdrv *shouldn't* make a difference, albeit I'm not entirely sure what this setting changes in the program logic. SMARTDRV was a tool to cache disk files in memory under DOS and it was configured per disk, if the game should call SMARTDRV.exe it would simply not exist. Given that the operating system will cache files anyways, like SMARTDRV would, I'd leave it turned on.
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waltc: In resource.cfg I also use general midi drv for music along with soundfonts through Coolsoft's Virtual Midi synth (which I'll bet you are using, too...;) Everyone on Win10 who games should be using it, imo.)
I don't think GK2 uses MIDI at all though... and for Sierra games I generally prefer MUNT over a General MIDI solution like BASSMIDI.
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waltc: Maybe I should try the 32-bit dosbox.exe version of svn-daum...Hmmm...wonder if that's all it takes to keep the sound from dropping out at all...! It'd be just like me to have been chasing my tail here...!
I used the 32-bit version and experienced that, nah.
Post edited November 20, 2015 by ChrisTX
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ChrisTX: Why did you set High DMA to 7 though? A sound blaster is usually with their 8-bit DMA on 1 and 16-bit DMA to 5. The standard DOSBox setting is IRQ 7, DMA 1, HDMA 5 - but IRQ 5 and 7 are both common choices for soundcards. You can add audioIRQ=7 to resource.cfg, that was apparently a valid setting for GK1, I suppose it still is for GK2 but I haven't checked myself. Either way, IRQ 5 and 7 seem to have the same loading times for me.
Those early games were all weird...;) DOSbox accepts many more variables than many of these games do, I've found. I've even had early DOS games which let me set the configuration manually in their setups but which then weren't happy with them--someone would find the right IRQ/DMA settings and report it in a forum--and sure enough when I'd use them the game would run much better. Many of the early games won't even run if their hard-coded sound config is not what the game expects.
minMemory shouldn't change anything and smartdrv *shouldn't* make a difference, albeit I'm not entirely sure what this setting changes in the program logic. SMARTDRV was a tool to cache disk files in memory under DOS and it was configured per disk, if the game should call SMARTDRV.exe it would simply not exist. Given that the operating system will cache files anyways, like SMARTDRV would, I'd leave it turned on.
I really don't think it makes any difference here, but I remembered what smartdrv did originally so that's why I turned it off.
I don't think GK2 uses MIDI at all though... and for Sierra games I generally prefer MUNT over a General MIDI solution like BASSMIDI.
Yes, the midi device can be selected by running the setup file (install.exe--which does not reinstall the game--just allows you to choose your music and sound devices.) The driver for general midi is included in the GOG version of GK2, it's GENMIDI.DRV. You can either run install.exe or simply change it directly in resource.cfg. The game defaults to MT32.DRV, but I think the general midi driver sounds best, coupled with the VIrtual midisynth and the right sound fonts, of course.

I really appreciate this thread...;) It got me thinking again about this game and it runs much better than it did earlier...! Again, half the fun of these early games is in unraveling the sometimes arcane hardware configurations they expect.
Hey guys, been trying to get Gabriel Knight 3 to run properly for a while now. I'm on Windows 10 and I've tried ACT with the settings noted by ChrisTX to no avail. The game seems to run properly, but whenever there is any sort of text on screen (Top left corner Points System for example) it really becomes sluggish, until the text disappears and performance returns to 60FPS again.

Any idea on what I could do to get this to run properly?
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f2bnp: Hey guys, been trying to get Gabriel Knight 3 to run properly for a while now. I'm on Windows 10 and I've tried ACT with the settings noted by ChrisTX to no avail. The game seems to run properly, but whenever there is any sort of text on screen (Top left corner Points System for example) it really becomes sluggish, until the text disappears and performance returns to 60FPS again.

Any idea on what I could do to get this to run properly?
Many DirectDraw games have such issues with on screen text, but that's not a Windows 8 / 10 specific issue, afaik.

There's no functional DirectDraw wrapper for Windows 10, so outside of the DXPrimaryEmulation hack to increase performance there's nothing you can do to raise performance in fullscreen mode ("maximized windowed mode"), I'm afraid.

Do note however that playing in windowed mode should in general resolve the DirectDraw performance issue under Windows 8 and higher as well. To get GK3 in windowed mode, edit your registry and set the entry Full Screen in HKCU\SOFTWARE\Sierra On-Line\Gabriel Knight 3\Engine to 0. Additionally, you have to set the 16-bit compatibility option (either in the properties or by ForceDisplayMode with the ,,16 parameter) I've been playing the game in windowed mode - because it makes streaming it more comfortable - and can't say I'd have experienced any game breaking performance drops. The performance is not optimal, it's sometimes a bit sluggish, but that's the best you can get, I suppose.
Thanks for the hasty reply. I guess that settles it, it's going straight off to one of my older computers :D.
I was certain that I was going to soon purchase GK3 but from what I'm reading here maybe I shouldn't. King's Quest 8 won't play on my computer and it sounds like GK3 is the same kind of game and may have the same kinds of problems. On the bright side, at least from what I hear, I'm not missing much. I hear neither KQ8 or GK3 are nearly as good as their predecessors. I was able to play a little bit of KQ8 on my older laptop. I quickly found that I hated every bit of it, nonetheless I continued until I ran into a game-killing bug. The completionist in me was disappointed I didn't get to finish the series, but I hear the game wasn't going to get any better so I didn't bother trying to find a patch and I'm perfectly fine. GK3 sounds similar to KQ8, though I know not to what degree.
Just use dgVoodoo and it will work just fine, including texts. That's what I'm doing under W10 x64. This also makes it compatible with SweetFX. The only downside is that the game runs extremely slow on resolutions above 1280x720 but SweetFX's SMAA makes it bearable.

If you have a DX11 GPU you can try this config: http://www93.zippyshare.com/v/hZKtiAg1/file.html

DX11 only since that's what dgVoodoo is based on.
Post edited December 12, 2015 by fischkopf
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Cygnata: Feexed it. I uninstalled the GoGalaxy version, then downloaded directly from the site. I once again got the CD error, but the new exe replacement worked. With the GK3Launcher and compatibility mode on both the GK3 and the launcher set to WinXP, 16 bit color, and run as admin, I can now run in Win10, in windowed mode, with no issues whatsoever.
Just wanted to say thanks for reporting this - I was having no end of trouble with GK3 hard freezing on Windows 10 almost every other screen. Got rid of the GOG Galaxy install, re-downloaded directly from the site, then installed the GK3Launcher tool. Set both the tool and the GK3 executable (without replacing it) to run in WinXP Compatibility mode as Administrator, no other changes. Aside from a bit of slowdown in frame rate when text is at the top of the screen (such as when scoring points), the game runs flawlessly now. Appreciate the tip!