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How to play AoE II on Linux in widescreen
In this guide, we will install Age of Empires 2: The Conquerors Expansion in
WINE and apply the no-CD and widescreen patches. After following this procedure,
you should be able to play AoC with no CD or image, in native resolution. While
the aim is to be comprehensive, not every little bit of handholding is included.
Basic operations and Googling are left to the reader.
Install PlayOnLinux in your preferred way. I suggest your distro's package
manager, but more masochistic routes are available, if desired. PlayOnLinux is
probably not strictly necessary, but it's made to provide the optimal WINE
environment for each application, and it's how I did it, so it's all I know. You
can uninstall PlayOnLinux after you're done with all this if you care that much.
Just rename your ~/.PlayOnLinux/ before uninstalling PlayOnLinux, in case the
package manager tries to delete it. Directions for launching AoC without
PlayOnLinux will come later.
Obtain a copy of Age of Empires II and The Conquerors Expansion. If you have an
Age of Kings CD, insert it, duh. If you have "acquired" a digital copy, mount it.
(Hint: To mount a disc image, use mount -o loop /path/to/image.iso
/mnt/mountpoint/) I did my installation using a disc image, so I can't
say anything of any other form in which you might find AoC. If you need a copy,
I recommend the "Full ISO" version from ServiusTheBear.
Install Age of Kings.
Having mounted your copy of Age of Kings, open PlayOnLinux and click
Select Age of Empires II: The Age of
Kings from the Games category.
At this point, if you are not using a
disc image, you have the option to "Use a setup file in my computer." Good luck
with that. If you're following this guide, select Use
When asked where is mounted your CD-ROM, select
Other (or your physical drive, if you still actually have a
Enter the mountpoint path and hit Next.
Proceed through the Age of Kings installer as desired. Exit it at the end.
Mount your copy of The Conquerors Expansion and install it via PlayOnLinux,
using more or less the steps above. At the time of writing, POL asks, before
installing AoC, whether you have a "CD Version" or a "Digital Download Version".
Note that, if you're using a downloaded disc image, it's still a "CD Version". I
just let WINE install Gecko at this point because I don't give a shit if it's
recommended to do it through my package manager and I'm lazy.
Once installation is complete, get the 1.0e patch. If you only want a no-CD
patch, you only need 1.0c, but 1.0e also offers anticheat for online play, and I
didn't test with 1.0c anyway, so you're on your own if it fails. The patches can
be found here.
Now install the patch.
Select Age of Empires II: The Conquerors in PlayOnLinux, then
click the Configure button above.
Go to the Miscellaneous tab.
Click Run a .exe file in this virtual drive.
Select the patch you downloaded and complete its installer.
If you have already uninstalled PlayOnLinux before this step, or if you aren't
using it in the first place, this can also be done by issuing
You should now be able to run AoC in its standard resolutions. The rest of this
guide addresses widescreen support.
Get BoekaBart's widescreen patch installer.
See here for other goodies, or
if that link fails.
Install .NET Framework 3.5 and Mono. Before issuing the winetricks commands, you
should disable virtual desktop emulation in the Graphics tab of winecfg. Some of
the .NET installers will minimize to system tray if you don't, and there isn't
actually a system tray to get them back out of to continue, at least on my end.
WINEPREFIX=~/.PlayOnLinux/wineprefix/AgeOfEmpire2/ winetricks dotnet35
WINEPREFIX=~/.PlayOnLinux/wineprefix/AgeOfEmpire2/ winetricks mono28
When I installed .NET 3.5, the 3.5 installer stopped (after quite a while) with its
progress bar full and stayed there. I clicked Cancel, but it hung. I killed the
process by closing the window in my window manager. I then re-issued WINEPREFIX=~/.PlayOnLinux/wineprefix/AgeOfEmpire2/ winetricks
dotnet35 and received a message stating that .NET 3.5 was already
installed. The rest of the procedure went successfully from there.
Install BoekaBart's patch:
WINEPREFIX=~/.PlayOnLinux/wineprefix/AgeOfEmpire2/ wine msiexec /i AoE2WideSetup.msi
You must install the patch to a subdirectory
of the Age of Empires installation directory.
For example, you should tell the patch installer to install in
C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\Age of Empires II\AoE2Wide\.
Re-enable virtual desktop emulation in winecfg and set the resolution to what
you want the AoC window to be (for example, I set mine to 1024x570 on the
netbook, because my resolution is 1024x600, minus 30 pixels for a systray/conky
Run the installed patch to generate an executable for your resolution. You must
cd to the installation directory as shown below; it fails with "Cannot locate
the game directory" if you give wineconsole the ~/path/to/file.exe as we do in
other commands here.
cd ~/.PlayOnLinux/wineprefix/AgeOfEmpire2/drive_c/Program\ Files/Microsoft\
Games/Age\ of\ Empires\ II/AoE2Wide/ ;
WINEPREFIX=~/.PlayOnLinux/wineprefix/AgeOfEmpire2/ wineconsole AoE2Wide.exe
A bunch of text should scroll by in a console window. You should then have a
file along the lines of "AoC1.0e 1920x1080.bat" in
Do this to launch AoC:
Cinematics, game menus, etc. will be in a 4:3 resolution, but the resolution
will change to the one specified in the name of the batch file once you enter a
Here's a .sh launcher.