The Longest Journey slow on Windows XP

I recently played The Longest Journey (reviews) a few weeks ago, and I loved it. It’s a standard point-and-click adventure game, but the world and characters are surprisingly immersive, and the story is amazing so far.

Unfortunately, it took me a while to make it happy on Windows XP. It installed and ran, but it was incredibly slow, often only a few frames per second. I was surprised, since it’s an older game, and I run it on a Thinkpad T40 with an ATI Radeon 9000 Mobility, which should be more than enough power. I tried all the options in the launcher, including 16 vs. 32 bit color, low-detail models, W-buffer and force single buffer, and even Windows 95 and 98/ME compatibility mode. No luck. I was stumped.

Finally, I tried turning 3D acceleration off by unchecking the “Enable 3D Acceleration” checkbox. The framerate suddenly turned silky smooth. Maybe TLJ uses an older version of DirectX that the ATI driver doesn’t support well? Who knows. I’m just happy it works!

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