System Shock 2

This is the version of the game from the CD.

Application Details:

Version: 2.3
License: Retail
Votes: 35
Latest Rating: Garbage
Latest Wine Version Tested: 8.0-rc1

Maintainers: About Maintainership

Test Results

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What works

Almost everything works, but only with some preparations


  • htop

sudo apt-get install htop

  • A NoCD-crack to get around Safedisk (Should not be necessary anymore if you own the original disk, though I did *not* test that)
  • I used the splendid System Shock 2 Rebirth and shtup mods to enhance the textures, but this step is purely optional.

This is no problem since the game is not sold anymore. Still, Eidos owns every product made by Looking Glass Studios, so if you live in the States...


- Installation:

use the following postfix -lgntforce to force the installer to install the game, even though it thinks you are running WindowsNT. This yields the following line, assuming that you are within the installation directory of System Shock 2. I tested an .iso file of the game, so that comes down to:

wine "setup.exe" -lgntforce

- Running:

Run the game configured for Windows98 (in Wine Configuration)

This is how you do that:

  1. Open Applications => Wine => Configure Wine
  2. Click the button [Add Application] and browse to your installed System Shock executable
  3. Select Windows98 under "Windows Version"
  4. (optional, but recommended if you did install the patches): goto the tab "Graphics", select "emulate a virtual Desktop" and set it to 1024x768, the biggest resoltion this game can run natively.
  5. Click OK

Now that we have prepared the game, run it as follows:

  1. Run the game , let the intro do its thing *without interrupting it*
  2. Now here's where htop comes into play: open htop, select the shock2.exe process and type the [a] button to get into core affinity settings
  3. Clear all options, except "1"
  4. Type the [Enter] button to confirm your choice
  5. Keep the terminal with htop running until you don't want to play no more.
  6. Play this classic game :-) 

Many thanks to  Gert at

For pointing out the method using htop. Sadly, neither the tasksel-, nor schedtoolmethod worked for me

- Saving & Loading:

Making and restoring savegames gave me no problems whatsoever

What does not

- Clicking the left mouse button during scenes in between made this program become unresponsive, yet Wine still runs normally after that and bellows an unending loop of the latest line of music...



What was not tested

- Installing from the original CD.
- Using another graphical card than my nVidia 9600 with proprietary drivers

Hardware tested


  • GPU:
  • Driver:

Additional Comments

Finally this gem can be played once again, thank you developers for your immense effort. No regressions like with Diablo 1 please? .: Silver :., because of the hassle involved and the crashes on scenes in between when clicked. I could not get this to run properly when dual-booting the same box to WinXP SP2 using the latest nVidia drivers, Hah, a triumph for Wine!

selected in Test Results table below
Operating systemTest dateWine versionInstalls?Runs?Used
ShowArch Linux x86_64Dec 10 20228.0-rc1Yes Yes NoGarbageFiku Miku Foo Foo Foo 
ShowArch Linux x86_64Oct 30 20227.19No Not installable NoGarbageFiku Miku Foo Foo Foo 
ShowArch Linux x86_64Oct 05 20121.5.14Yes Yes PlatinumManne Dyrver 
ShowUbuntu 12.04 "Precise" amd64 (+ variants like Kubuntu)Nov 30 20121.4Yes Yes Platinuman anonymous user 
ShowFedora 16 x86_64Dec 14 20111.3.29Yes Yes BronzeKonstantin Boyandin 

Known Bugs

Bug # Description Status Resolution Other apps affected

Show all bugs

HowTo / Notes


Game will be randomly crashed on multicore systems. This is bug of Dark Engine (see bug #9844 for more info).

Launch game via taskset program:

 taskset -c 1 wine Shock.exe

Install the game

The game's installer refuses to install if it detects Windows 2k or later. To work around this, you have two options. First, you can run winecfg and set the Windows version to Windows 98, and then run setup.exe from the CD as normal. Alternatively, you can open a terminal, navigate to the CD drive, and run the installer this way: wine "setup.exe" -lgntforce

Do a full install (Intel codec too), but do not install Direct X.

Install SS2 Tool

SS2 Tool should be the first thing you do after installing the game.  It replaces the official patch, and also includes a few other critical bugfixes needed to get System Shock 2 working on modern systems.  It also removes the copy protection. 

For better looking graphics:

Install the SHTUP texture pack.
Install the Rebirth Complemented High-Definition model pack.