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[C3C] Installing, Playing and Modding C3C on Apple Silicon


Oct 30, 2022
Civ3 plays great on modern Apple computers with Apple Silicon (M1/M2), but takes a little extra work to get there. It took me awhile to piece it all together from different sources, but I have the Windows version of C3C running great including @Flintlock's C3X EXE Mod and both Steph's Civ3 Expanded Editor and @Quintillus's Cross-Platform Editor. Below are the steps and resources that worked for me on both a M1 MBA and a M2 MBA.

Install and Play C3C
  1. Download Civ3 from GOG. Steam is a hassle and doesn't play well with mods.
  2. Download PortingKit (free). They have pre-built Wineskin packages for many old Windows games that take all of the hassle and guess work out of creating Wineskin wrappers that work. There are prebuilt packages for Civ3 and Civ4.
  3. Edit Conquests.ini or the game won't launch.
    1. Go to your Applications folder and right-click on your new "Sid Meier's Civilization III Complete.app" and choose "Show Package Contents."
    2. Navigate to drive_c/GOG Games/Civilization III Complete/Conquests and open conquests.ini" in TextEdit.
    3. Add "PlayIntro=0" and "KeepRes=1" under the [Conquests] section header. The first option skips the intro movie so the game will launch, the second will play Civ3 at your computer's native resolution.
That's it. You will be able to launch C3C as if it were a native app and you can play just one more turn ....

Install Flintlock's C3X EXE Mod

This is a little more complicated. I am still not sure everything is working 100% and I can't remember the deep dark abyss of the Internet I stumbled into to piece it together so YYMV. I should have documented the steps as I did them, but I am pretty sure this is it.
  1. Download, uncompress, and move Flintlock's C3X EXE Mod folder to the Conquests folder (see above). I make a shortcut to the Conquest folder on the Finder sidebar since I go to it A LOT.
  2. Install Homebrew. Homebrew is needed to run a newer version of Wineskin Server that runs on current MacOS (Ventura at time of posting).
  3. Install Wineskin Server via Homebrew.
  4. Launch Wineskin Server from your Applications folder. Create a New Blank Wrapper (I called mine C3X15). This will create a new Wineskin Wrapper that you can use to run the C3X INSTALL.bat.
  5. Navigate to ~home/Applications/Wineskin (this Applications is a different folder than the main Applications folder) and launch your new C3X15.app. After launching the app choose Install Software and then click on Advanced. For "Windows app" browse to your Conquests folder, then the C3X folder, select "INSTALL.bat", and then click Test Run. This should run and install the C3X EXE Mod. You will see a command line and successfully installed window if all went well.
Now when you launch C3C you should have a working version of the game with all the cool features of the C3X EXE Mod.

Modding Tools

I have both Steph's Civ3 Expanded Editor and Quintillus's Cross-Platform Editor working (for the most part). The Quintillus editor thinks you are running the old Mac version of the game and not the Windows version. The path structure of the two are different. You can still use the editor, but you have to disable the map editor. Everything else works. I use Steph's editor to design my Tech Tree. His drag and drop interface is awesome. I also use Steph's editor to create or copy multiple improvements/units.
  1. To launch Steph's editor choose "Open With Porting Kit" and launch using existing Civ3 Wrapper. After the first time you should just be able to launch by double-clicking.
  2. To launch Quintillus's editor you have to install Java 8. Then follow the steps in the original thread and you should be able to launch the editor by double-clicking.
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This is a great guide, thank you for writing it up! I have made it a sticky so that it remains highly visible, since this is likely to be a topic of interest for many Civ fans who are running Macs, and perhaps more so as the years go by and Apple Silicon becomes more common.
Thanks. It was the least I can do considering all that I have learned from the Civfanatics Community. I know how frustrating it can be trying to figure things out on your own when information is outdated or even non-existent.
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