Need help learning how to set up a MP game....


Mar 22, 2024
Hi all,

I posted in technical support, but this may be better suited for a MP thread.

I have been playing BTS recently and I have always been able to connect with my roommate over LAN. Recently, I got back into RI and I wanted to try playing that mod MP. Unlike BTS, when I create a LAN game and they look to Join, nothing shows up. I haven't encountered this issue before, and it's a bit confusing. Can anyone walk me through what's going on? Might it have to do with us both having the Steam version?
Here are my experiences in running MP games with 4 people and 52 civs in Civ4 RI:

Tips and Tricks to Get the Game running Smoothly​

I play several multiplayer games on the Worldmap Huge with 52 civilizations. We are 3-4 players, who play over Steam. Although it is tough, we managed to play the game to the modern era with only moderate rate of crashes. Here is my experience about how to handle multiplayer problems.

Process Lasso​

Use Process Lasso to free up memory at a certain point to reduce the risk of memory allocation failures. How to use:

  1. Install Process Lasso and buy it to have the effect longer than 30 days
  2. Start Civ4 RI
  3. Go to process lasso and press Process Lasso->right click on Civ4BeyondtheSword.exe->Set Watchdog Advanced Rules
  4. Create a new rule with the following settings:
  • Process match: civ4beyondsword.exe
  • for virtual memoryGreater than 825 megabytes
  • for 30 seconds
  • then trim virtual memory
  • virtual memory metric to use: Any memory metric
  1. Go to options->Memory->Enable Smart Trim

Must DOs to prevent Crashes of the Game​

The following setps increases the memory available for the application:

  1. Download the 4GB Patch from (Website and apply it to C:\Games\Steam\steamapps\common\Sid Meier's Civilization IV Beyond the Sword\Beyond the Sword\Civ4BeyondSword.exe
  2. Increase memory for the application with call bcdedit /set IncreaseUserVa 3072, which is put into a script here .\scrips\civ4_preparation.bat

MAF Failure and other Graphic Problems​

The following things help here:

  1. Get a computer with a very good graphic card and much graphic card memory (not normal RAM) to lower the probablity for these kinds of errors
  2. Lower the resolution to minimum in full screen mode
  3. Option: single unit graphics
  4. Option: graphical paging
  5. CivilizationIV.ini: Paging out units and unit animations
  6. CivilizationIV.ini: Play in windowed mode and not in full screen

Out of Sync Errors Unnoticed​

The problem was that there emerged lots of out of sync errors early in the game. The worst thing was that it is not always noticeable that out of sync occurs. After some time, you see different things than other players. We play one very fast computer, two „normal“ computers and a slow laptop. It seems that the different speeds at which the computers are able to start a new turn cause frequent out of sync errors.

Mitigation 1​

The idea is to slow down the loading of the turn at the fast computers. This is done in CivilizationIV.ini an efficient way by adding logging to the game. To slow down the fastest computer the most, please set the following in CivilizationIV.ini:

; Create a dump file if the application crashes
GenerateCrashDumps = 1

; Enable the logging system
LoggingEnabled = 1

; Enable synchronization logging
SynchLog = 1

; Overwrite old network and message logs
OverwriteLogs = 1

; Enable rand event logging
RandLog = 1

; Enable message logging
MessageLog = 1

We started by setting this to all computers and almost all out of sync immediately disappeared. At a later stage, as computers get slower, try to deactivate some of the logging options to speed up the slowest computer. The goal is that all computer finish turns with as little difference as possible.

Out of Sync With Red, Blinking Message​

Usually, at the beginning oft he turns, one computer takes pretty long to finish and then, an out of sync occurs.

Mitigation 1​

Like above, activate the logs

Mitigation 2​

Restart all computers. Usually, out of sync happens very irregular. Some times it happens four times within an hour and then four hours not. Restarting all computers seem to help here.

Mitigation 3​

In case the OOS seems to occur due to one of the slower computers, change or reduce the graphics resolution. Some resolutions do not seem to work very well on all computers. Also in windowed mode, the OOS still occur. Try another resolution. In the worst case, use the lowest possible resolution.

Timeout of Turn Loading​

If you play with a really slow computer, it is the last to start the new turn. There seems to be a timeout, which causes the connection to break after some time.

Mitigation 1​

If logging is on due to sync errors, deactive some of the loggers to see an increase in starting speed.

Mitigation 2​

Buy a new and faster computer. Thr 10y old game requires more resources than many new games.

Fast Loading of Save Games in Multiplayer Mode​

If the save game of the host is put in the .\My Games\beyond the sword\Saves\multi\auto, no loading of a save game in the game is necessary and players save 5min at the loading. In ./scripts/Copy_Civ4_Save.bat the bat file is used to copy the current savegame over Dropbox from the host to all other multiplayers to prevent the really long loading times in the game. Each player uses it on his/her local machine.
For starting the game, I would recommend to use the steam version and create an internet game. Then, you won't have the problems with firewalls. If you play with a mod, it is important that you use exactly the same mod files on all computers (zip and copy mod if you do some balancing). Else, you are playing with different versions and won't see the game of the host. If you do a LAN game, try turning of the firewalls while playing or create a rule to let Civ communicate.
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