List of CPU speed sensitive games

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This is a list of games that do not run properly in some ways on CPUs faster than what was common than at the game's release. 1990+ for the most part, since before that, this was more often the case than not: As a general rule, games for IBM XT computers require a 8088 4.77 MHz to play right.

Some CPUs, for example AMD K6-2 and earlier Pentium IIs have selectable multipliers, which may help with achieving the lower speeds recommended for some of the games in this article. Additionally, disabling L1/L2 caches will slow down the processor as well, e.g. a Pentium III with disabled caches will be comparable to a 386. Also, it is possible to use a slow 3D card to slow some of the games down, especially with the early proprietary APIs; a special case here are Rendition Vérité cards, since their slow VGA performance will also bottleneck DOS games using these modes.

For games with unlisted optimal CPU specs refer to the minimum requirements published by the developers.


Game title Symptoms with faster CPUs Recommended CPUs Fix available?
Double Dragon (1988) Locks up before final battle and player 2 will have fewer moves 8088 4.77 MHz
Wing Commander (1990) Runs too fast max. 386DX-33
Test Drive III (1990) Runs too fast 386
The Secret of Monkey Island (1990) Garbled MT-32 music with fast CPUs  ?
Space Quest IV: Roger Wilco and The Time Rippers (1991) Bugs every time a sequel police is on the screen 386?
Ultima VII: The Black Gate (1992)  ?  ?
Zool (1992)  ?  ?
Star Control II (1992)  ?  ?
Lotus III: The Ultimate Challenge (1992) Crashes with invalid opcode error Pentium II 350 or slower
Syndicate (1993) Crashes at startup with glass breaking sound (5x86 133/P166 and Sound Blaster)  ?
Day of the Tentacle (1993) No sound with >P166MMX  ?
Lemmings 2: The Tribes (1993) Requires HDD smaller than 504 MB (CHS limit) or else the copy protection checksum calculated by the installer is wrong  ?
SkyRoads (1993) Runs too fast  ?
Alien Carnage (1993/1994) Runs too fast?  ?
Descent (1994) Runs too fast with ~higher PIIs Pentium 233 MMX
Jazz Jackrabbit (1994) Doesn't start (error message "Runtime error 200") with about PII 233 plays fine with patch TPPATCH (3rd party)
Theme Park (1994) Runs too fast 486 DX2/66?
Warcraft: Orcs & Humans (1994) Scrolls too fast, water animations cycle too fast, somewhat playable 386DX-33
King's Quest VII: The Princeless Bride (1994) Speed bug with one or two puzzles  ?
Warlords II Deluxe (1995) Crashes on startup with fast CPUs 486DX2-66
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness (1995) Scrolls too fast with PIIs, but playable Pentium 133? Windows version works fine
Alien Trilogy (1996) Runs too fast on higher P3s  ?
Descent II (1996) Normal game speed, but mouse sensitivity drops down on high framerates Pentium II 300?
Toonstruck (1996) Speed bug with one or two puzzles  ?
Micro Machines 2: Turbo Tournament (1996)  ?  ?
Hi-Octane (1996) Speed problems Pentium 90
Carmageddon (1997) Runs too fast  ?


Game title Symptoms with faster CPUs Recommended CPUs Fix available?
Master of Orion II (1996) Battle screen scrolls too fast, minor issue Pentium 166?
Jane's US Navy Fighters 97 (1996) Runs too fast  ? Increase resolution; Jane's Fighters Anthology version works fine
SimCopter (1996) Runs too fast/glitchy and crashes on P4 3.2 GHz/98SE K6-2 350
Streets of SimCity (1997) " "
Interstate '76 (1997) Broken physics?  ?
Wipeout 2097/Wipeout XL (1997) Runs too fast  ? supposedly available
Imperialism (1997) World map scrolls too fast plays fine with patch Patch 1.1 (slight scrolling delay added)
Sega Rally Championship (1997) Direct3D version plays too fast  ?
Star Trek Generations (1997) Runs too fast  ?
Grand Prix Legends (1998) Runs too fast with >1.7 GHz plays fine with patch CPU patch for version 1.2
Star Trek: The Next Generation: Klingon Honor Guard (1998) Crashes to desktop in the "Advanced Options" menu, CPU throttling issues  ?
Unreal (1998) "  ?
TNN Outdoors Pro Hunter (1998) "  ?
Gex: Enter the Gecko (1998) Lack of framerate limiter may cause the game to play too fast in certain situations  ?
Monaco GP Racing Simulation 2 (1999) Runs too fast at >2.0 GHz <2 GHz
Speed Busters (1999) Crashes at >2.0GHz <2 GHz version works fine
Unreal Tournament (1999) CPU throttling issues - See main article for details
Pro Rally 2001 (2000) Hangs at >2.0 GHz plays fine with patch Install with [1], update to 1.1, [2], may not work with AMD FX CPUs
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: The Fallen (2000) CPU throttling issues  ? Use Direct3D renderer
Cossacks: European Wars (2001) Runs too fast in multiplayer?  ?
FIFA Football 2002 (2001) Crashes to desktop with >2 GHz <2 GHz

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