NOTESEverything in this section is optional.If you must install FS2 to somewhere other than C:\Games\FreeSpace2\
- having FreeSpace 2 in My Documents or the Desktop will cause errors.
- really long directory paths cause errors.
- in Vista/Win 7, having FreeSpace 2 anywhere inside \Program Files\ can cause all sorts of surprising errors/problems.
If you want to try the Source Code Project's latest version of FreeSpace Open, grab the latest nightly build from the nightly builds board
. The most recent versions of FSO might have new features, bug fixes, or even improved performance, but they might also have new bugs. If you see SSE or NO_SSE and don't know what they mean, see the release thread
for an explanation.
You'll need to download and install 7-Zip
to uncompress the nightly builds download. Once you've downloaded your build of choice, find it in Windows Explorer, right-click on it, select 7-Zip then "Extract files...", click on the "..." button on the right, choose your FreeSpace 2 directory, then click OK.Saving a little space with the cutscenes
Download the cutscenes in .ogg format
, put them in \FreeSpace2\data\movies\, and either delete the .mve files or move them to somewhere else. Note that the .ogg cutscenes only work with FSO; retail FS2 requires the .mve files.FSO build differences (or what the "DEBUG" means)
When viewing the builds in your \FreeSpace2\ folder, you'll notice that there always seems to be a pair of builds, with a difference of a few characters between them. If the file name contains the word "DEBUG", it means that that build is a "debug"
build (for example, fs2_open_3_6_18_DEBUG
.exe). Debug builds are used for generating debug logs (called fs2_open.log)
when you run into problems using FSO. They are NOT meant for casual playing. Also, contrary to popular belief, debug builds do NOT magically solve whatever problem you're facing.
The builds that are not debug builds are "release"
builds. Release builds have file names where the "DEBUG" is missing (for example, fs2_open_3_6_18.exe). Release builds are the ones that you should be using if all you want to do is play the game. So unless you need to generate a debug log, go for a "release"
build, NOT a debug build.
Thanks to Fineus and Jeff Vader for writing an earlier version of these instructions.
Special thanks to jr2 for his help with revising the previous version and for pointing out that the instructions needed to be rewritten.
Special thanks also to Zacam for his help with writing the Quick Start.