Alpha Centauri has been re-released by GOG.com!!!

Petek

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Thanks for posting this information! I find it interesting that Sold-Out Software still offers a combined SMAC/SMAX package for sale. However, while the SOS package includes the SecuRom DRM, GOG advertises that all their games are DRM-free. I sent a message to GOG asking whether the release includes SMAX. I'll post again when (and if) I get a reply.
 

skdyer

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Thanks for posting this information! I find it interesting that Sold-Out Software still offers a combined SMAC/SMAX package for sale. However, while the SOS package includes the SecuRom DRM, GOG advertises that all their games are DRM-free. I sent a message to GOG asking whether the release includes SMAX. I'll post again when (and if) I get a reply.

Oh good...I was going to do the same thing. Unfortunately GOG does sometimes sell games without their sequels for some strange reason. Let's just hope that's not the case here.
 

Petek

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Thanks for the heads up!

I downloaded and installed GOG's re-release of SMAC. Here are some observations:

1. On a Windows 7 system, the game will install by default into the folder

C:\Program Files (x86)\GOGcom\Sid Meiers Alpha Centauri

but you have the option to select a different location.

2. Again in Windows 7, save game files will be stored in

C:\Users\(user name)\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files (x86)\GOGcom\Sid Meiers Alpha Centauri\saves

Note: This location is different from where the program files are stored.

3. The Alpha Centauri.ini file is stored in

C:\Users\(user name)\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files (x86)\GOGcom\Sid Meiers Alpha Centauri

To edit this file, you may have to run Notepad as the Administrator. Also, the ini file automatically contains the line

ForceOldVoxelAlgorithm=1

which is needed on some systems to run the game. (The folder where the program files are located also contains a bare-bones version of the ini file, but it appears not to be used.)

4. The game is free of DRM. No disc need be in the drive (since there is no disc). Another company re-released the game, but with SecuRom DRM. The GOG version does not include SecuRom.

5. The installation file installs SMAC 5.0, which is the most recent official version.

6. The readme.txt file included with the download mentions both SMAC and the Alien Crossfire (SMAX) add-on. However, the download does not include SMAX. I sent GOG a message asking whether they would re-release SMAX, but haven't received a reply.

Moderator Action: I edited the title of the thread to refect that the game is now available.
 

skdyer

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By the way, the head PR guy for GOG has finally made a statement regarding the lack of SMAX:

"I honestly don't know what the end result for expansions is going to be. In part because I'm in LA and the rest of the team (Except for Guillaume) is still in Warsaw. Also in part because they don't involve me in any discussions with the publishers because there's no reason for me to be in the loop while they're talking things out.

We know you guys want the expansions. We're doing what we can, but can't give any kind of answer one way or the other. We'll let you know as soon as we do."


http://www.gog.com/en/forum/general/ea_and_lack_of_expansions_to_games/post28
 

skdyer

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Petek: Do you have to uninstall your disc-based version of SMAC before installing and successfully running the GOG version? Do they conflict in any way? I'd just like to avoid uninstalling my other version in case I ever get the hankering to play SMAX.
 

Petek

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Petek: Do you have to uninstall your disc-based version of SMAC before installing and successfully running the GOG version? Do they conflict in any way? I'd just like to avoid uninstalling my other version in case I ever get the hankering to play SMAX.

I didn't find any conflicts, but I only played four or five turns. If you have installed any other versions of SMACX, I'd recommend installing the GOG version in a different folder (such as the default location mentioned above).
 

Cinnabar

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Another point about the gog.com version, just in case someone finds it useful: after I installed it, it quit when starting up (on my computer running Windows XP home). The problem was the screen resolution. Once I set the resolution manually, it loaded fine. I expect I'll be able to modify the .ini file eventually, in the meantime it's working.
 

skdyer

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Here are the responses I received to emails I had sent GOG asking about Alien Crossfire and why it has not been released:

1st response:
"Sorry about the late reply, I wasn't able to get an answer for you before my vacation. As you can see our release of Alpha Centauri comes without the expansion. I can't promise that we'll be able to add any more content to our releases. We would like to, but I don't know if it will ever be possible. I apologize for the inconvenience..."

Depressing.

Response to why they may not be able to release Alien Crossfire:
"Unfortunately I can't go into details. As you can expect, we encountered some legal difficulties that make it impossible for us to release these expansions, at least at this time."

Even more depressing

I just don't get it. I guess at this point all we can do is wait and hope.
 

Petek

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I wonder why they could re-release SMAC, but not SMAX? Some speculation: GOG always releases DRM-free games. SMAC's DRM was removed in 2002 with the Win2k/XP update. That is, after that update, you no longer had to keep the CD in the drive. However, no official SMAX patch or update ever removed the need to keep the CD in the drive. Perhaps removing the SMAX DRM is the hangup. After all, Sold-Out Software re-released both SMAC and SMAX a couple of years ago. However, Sold-Out's version of SMAX requires the CD to be in the drive. We'll probably never know.
 

Gazurtoid

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Are there any Sisiutil like strategy guides available for SMAC? His CivIV guides were invaluable to me in learning the ropes as 4X games can sometimes hurt my puny brain.
 

Cinnabar

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There's a fair amount of information online:

Articles on various aspects of the game here.

Pdf version of an excellent strategy guide here.

Both those websites have lots of other useful stuff, too.
 
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