Getting started with FreeSpace 2

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Revision as of 06:45, 3 June 2006 by Wanderer (talk | contribs) (launcher tabs... copied from Karas FAQ)
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This page is under construction (if this page is deemed necessary that is -> talk page)

Getting Retail FreeSpace 2

Installing FreeSpace 2

  • Game should be installed into a directory that has no empty spaces in its name. For example c:\games\Freespace2\ is ok, but c:\Program Files\Freespace2 or c:\games\Freespace 2\ are not.

Update the Retail Freespace 2

Download SCP Files

  • Some downloadable versions have SCP already installed


Game Builds

Latest Official Build

Includes 5.3 Launcher

Current CVS Builds

  • Link to newest
  • Link to second
  • Link to third

MediaVP File Sets

  • MediaVP sets should always be installed to their own directory preferably named as mediavps that is located in the FreeSpace root directory. For example if FreeSpace has been installed to c:\games\freespace then MediaVP files should be placed to c:\games\freespace\mediavps directory.

Latest Official MediaVPs

  • Direct links to 367 mediavp files and their patches
  • Full Package,
contains Core, Effects, Music, Textures, and Models, requires Patch

Invidual files

Optional files

cell shaded graphics (cartoon style), not recommended for normal gameplay
additional advanced effects, may cause severy slowdowns
additional patch to fix slowdown caused by beam firings
WARNING very limited functionality, not recommended

Current WIP MediaVPs

contains Core, Effects, Music, Textures, and Models

Invidual files

Optional Files

Setting up the 5.3 Launcher

Selecting the Game Build

  • First thing to do is to click on the Browse... button at the top of the Launcher and select the build you installed.


  • If you have trouble with your joystick not working properly in FS2_Open, you may try the Force 0 or Force 1 options, which will force FS2_Open to use the first or second joysticks, respectively.


  • Adjust the settings accordingly


  • If you are using Windows XP, or have the Speech API installed, FS2_Open will be able to read briefings, techroom descriptions, and even in game messages to you using computer-generated voices. Although no match for real voice acting, it is convenient when valid plot points are mentioned in the middle of combat. Speech in the various locations can be turned on and off by checking and unchecking the check boxes; you can choose which of the installed voices to use in FS2_Open by changing the drop-down menu.


  • Unless you know what you are doing dont tamper with these settings


  • You can choose which API to use (OpenGL or Direct3D), what resolution to run in, and whether to use anti-aliasing (Multisampling) or not. With current builds it is recommended to use OpenGL as DirectX is unstable and not actively supported.
  • Allow non standard modes will let you choose resolutions other than 1024x768 and 640x480. There may be some small graphics alignment errors, but these are generally small and virtually unnoticeable.


  • This tab is where most of FS2_Open's options can be toggled on and off. At the top is a readout of your current command line. You should include this if you ever need to report an error with FS2_Open.
  • Easy setup basically allows you to turn lots of features on or off at once. Generally most people use it and then fine tune the settings immediately afterwards.
  • Custom flags allows you to add any command line flags that don't show up in the Launcher. This may be because they require additional arguments, as is the case with the -fov command line argument (for more information, you can see the Command-Line Reference page of the wiki). Its recommended to add -ambient_factor 50 to the command line.
  • Finally, the two boxes below this let you toggle the various new features in FS2 Open individually. The list type option lets you choose between graphics, sound etc and the tickboxes let you turn the feature on or off.


  • This tab is used to select mods for the game. For example this installation guide directs you to install MediaVPs in such a way that FS2 will treat them as a mod. Click Select MOD and choose mediavps folder that you picked earlier.
  • The reason that we installed the media VPs as a mod is that if FS2_Open doesn't work you can click the no MOD button and run without them and check whether the problem is with the build or the media VPs. It also means that you can still run retail FS2 if you want to.