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How can I overcome a directx error when I start up my Sid Meier's Pirates CD on my Windows 7 PC

Mar 4, 2020
I feel like I've tried running the game on every possible resolution, and I copy and pasted the config.ini replacement codes I've found online so far. I've tried running the game on the 98/me, 2000, and both XP service packs compatibility modes available in properties, and all the possible different combinations, but nothing seems to have solved the issue. I would love some professional assistance. Thanks!
Mar 4, 2020
I have Directx 11.0 installed. The game requires 9.0 or higher, and it will install 9.0 automatically to meet requirements, but because I already have a higher version it won't auto install. Do I need to find a way to manually install 9.0?


Jan 14, 2020
Maybe this could be of help: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=34429

Normally it should autoinstall regardless of you having a newer DirectX, at least that is what I have experienced when playing older games. You could also try to run in admin if you have not tried that already. Lol, I have to keep reminding myself you are not talking about Pirates (1994) as I was about to tip you on using DosBox.
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Mar 4, 2020
I gave up trying to run it on the Windows 7. I took an old XP system to Radioshack for a Reinstall, and I was able to get the game to start up. Unfortunately now the game will freeze if the resolution is too high, and it will crash if it is not high enough. I am wondering if there is a sweet spot for the settings that I could adjust in the config.ini file to work on the XP Home edition. I am hoping I don't need to figure out a new display driver
Feb 17, 2020
Long shot, but can you register the CD's licence key with Steam and download and run that edition?

You can sometimes activate retail CD keys on steam for older games.

Also that old Windows XP system - it's not connected to the internet, is it?
Mar 4, 2020
It isn't connected. I'm thinking I might have a bad stick of RAM and perhaps a 4GB could fix it, or I could snag one off a Windows 7 PC. Could that work?
Jan 19, 2020
The digital versions are available on GoG and Steam if you can afford to drop a few dollars on a new copy. That also might smooth out some runtime or install problems on Windows.
GOG: On sale now for $2.49: https://www.gog.com/game/sid_meiers_pirates
Steam: For $9.99: https://store.steampowered.com/app/3920/Sid_Meiers_Pirates/

Another option may be to run Windows 7 (or an older version if you have it) through a virtual machine. To make this work you will need a beefy machine with 4 cores and 8GB+ of RAM. For this game you shouldn't need a dedicated discrete video card. I run a Windows 10 VM on Linux to play my old SSI Gold Box DOS games. There is a decent learning curve with this, but it's also very powerful once you get it setup.
Virtual Box (free software by Oracle to run virtual machine operating systems): https://www.virtualbox.org/

The game is reported to run in Linux if you can't get it running in Windows and really want to play it. The Linux option has a big learning curve though. On Linux Pirates would run through WINE or Valve's SteamPlay Proton compatibility tool. Running it in a VM or dual boot may be an option if you have room for it and are familiar with that tech. Like I said it's a big learning curve, but I wanted to throw the option out for you or others who may be interested.
Proton DB: https://www.protondb.com/app/3920
WINE HQ: https://appdb.winehq.org/objectManager.php?sClass=application&iId=1985
Fedora Linux (a Linux Operating system supported by Red Hat): https://getfedora.org/

I know this is a bit overkill, but I'm waiting for data to process and I thought some alternatives might be helpful.
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