Friday, May 22, 2020

Installing and playing Escape from Monkey Island on Windows 10 with a 4K monitor

It was a nightmare trying to run Escape from Monkey Island, also know as "Monkey Island 4" on my computer which has Windows 10 and multiple 4K monitors. I literally spent over 12 hours trying various things from Residual VM, the Quick & Easy software installer, a Windows XP VM, and dgvoodoo.

Here is what I found finally worked.

  1. Install the 2 original CDs using the installer from Quick and Easy software at
  2. If you have multiple monitors, only leave the first and second connected. Disable the 3rd one (or any beyond that) in Windows display settings. Otherwise, you will get a pop-up dialog starting the game saying "Could not initialize your hardware !"
  3. Download dgvoodoo 2.55.4 from and extract it to a temporary folder 
  4. Copy the following 4 files from dgvoodoo to the game directory, probably "C:\Program Files (x86)\Lucasarts\Monkey4" :
    Note: do not create an MS subfolder under the game folder. 
  5. run dgVoodooCpl.exe from "C:\Program Files (x86)\Lucasarts\Monkey4"
  6. In the General tab, set scaling mode to "stretched, keep aspect ratio"
  7. In the DirectX tab, set resolution to "Max" and uncheck the watermark 
  8. start EMI launcher from the install in step 1 
  9. under Options, click "Update game to version 1.1" and proceed to install the update
  10. under Options, check "Run without CD" 
  11. Close the Options tab
  12. Click "Play full screen" to start the game at the original 640x480 . DO NOT change the resolution.

    Intro and cut scenes should be in the correct aspect ratio, and fill the whole screen.

    On a wide screen 16:9 monitor, there should be black bars on the side the entire time.

    After skipping cut scenes (press ESC twice), once in the game, the 3D graphics will be very sharp, for example,
    Guybrush himself. They benefit from the highest resolution the monitor supports.

    However, the game text still looks like hell, due to jagged fonts still being based on 640x480 resolution.

    Unfortunately, on my system changing the resolution in EMI launcher to anything other than 640x480 causes various
    problems with aspect ratio and display corruption during the intro, cut scenes, or the game itself.

    So, don't do that. Stick to 640x480 only. Even if you don't have those problems on your machine, if you try
    for example 2048x1536, the fonts will just become far too small to read, but won't be any sharper.

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