Police Quest 3: The Kindred Help

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    Police Quest 3 Patches/Updates

Police Quest 3's original requirements:

MS-DOS 3.3 or greater
8088 / 8086 or better
640 KB RAM
5.5 MB Hard drive space
AdLib, Game Blaster, Roland MT-32/LAPC-1, Sound Blaster


Audio Problems

Audio problems are common in the later Sierra DOS SCI games. There's no single fix for all these games.

Problem - Poor Quality / No Sound (Win9x and XP):
The game has no sound or the music is of poor quality.

Solution 1 (preferred):
Play the game in DOSBox. It also will work with the MT-32 sound module, if you are fortunate to have one.

Solution 2:
Use VDMSound. The game work well with VDMSound. The sound will be as good as your audio hardware, and as with DOSBox, it works with the MT-32 sound module.

Solution 3:
Play the game with FreeSCI, a third party Interpreter for Sierra's early SCI games.

Solution 4 (DOS/Win9x):
Install DOS drivers for your soundcard. Without DOS drivers installed you won't have sound in a DOS window in Windows 9x. If you can't find DOS drivers for your soundcard, there is an alpha (developmental) version of VDMS that you can try.

Problem - Unable to initialize your audio hardware:
On starting the game you get the message:

Unable to initialize your audio hardware

Solution 1 (preferred):
Play the game in DOSBox. By playing your game in DOSBox, you can avoid this and other timer problems. Even the Windows version can be played in DOSBox if you install Windows 3x in it, first.

Back when computers came with a "Turbo" switch (a sort of speed switch,) Sierra's workaround was to turn off the Turbo switch to start the game, after which you could turn the Turbo back on. If you have your cycles in DOSBox set too high, you may still encounter this problem. You can mimic the turbo switch solution by lowering your cycles (Ctl+F11) before starting your game. You may raise the cycles back up after the game starts (Ctl+F12).

Solution 2:
Patch the old audio driver with GOSiERRA or SBSIERRA.

Solution 3:
Use an updated audio driver.

Solution 4:
Try installing the Windows version

Speed problems

As with many of the Sierra VGA games, Police Quest 3 has some speed bugs. These bugs can also be avoided by playing the game in DOSBox. If you can't or don't want to use DOSBox, you can try using a Slowdown Utility.

Here is a list of problems with solutions/workarounds.

Problem - Police Car Too Fast:
The police car moves way too quickly to drive easily, even at 5 MPH. Also, the car goes too fast and ends up crashing when Morales asks you to drive to the mall.

Solution #1 (preferred):
Apply this patch by NewRisingSun. (You may still want to play the game in DOSBox.)

Solution #2:
Install the DOS version and play using DOSBox.

Solution #3:
Use a Slowdown Utility.

Note: In some cases, driving at 5 MPH after slowing down the computer is still fast since getting from one place to another may take just several seconds. It won't feel like realistic driving where you get from one place to another after one or two minutes. What's important is being able to control the car.

Problem - No Exit While Driving:
You are on the correct street, yet you do not see the police station entrance, the mall entrance, or freeway on ramp when you pass by it.

Solution #1 (preferred):
Apply this patch by NewRisingSun. (You may still want to play the game in DOSBox.)

Solution #2:
Install the DOS version and play using DOSBox.

Solution #3:
Use a Slowdown Utility.

Solution #4:
After passing by the spot where you are supposed to see the entrance or on ramp, circle the block to come back around to the same spot. You should be able to see the entrance or on ramp on the second pass.

Notes: The "Sonny Bonds, please call dispatch immediately" message timer is based on the realtime clock. The game is programmed to display the message exactly 300 seconds (5 minutes) after you have finished the briefing.

Game Specific Bugs

There is a bug Police Quest III has that are not speed dependent.

Problem - Pentagram Problem:
There is a problem with the pentagram in PQ3 if using a keyboard.

Solution #1:
Apply this patch


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