The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind

On August 26, 2010, in playable games, by Necron99

STATUS: playable Steam Store Page: click here
Wine Version: 1.3.28  
Windowed: yes Full-screen:yes

Re-tested Morrowind on Wine 1.3.28

d3dx9 + vcrun6sp6 

In winecfg: sound is set to emulation,  Morrowind.exe and Morrowind Launcher.exe set to use Windows 98 

All looked good with the pre-game splash screen opening up. I checked the options and (Morrowind being an older game and not supporting high resolutions) I set the game up to run in 1280×960 windowed mode – with pixel shading off.  Launching the game went well with the intro sequence playing with full sound. At the main menu in game I checked the options again and set Video view distance to FAR as well as real time shadows to OFF.

Creating a new game seemed to go ok – though when I went into Options again and tried to change the default key settings, the game froze…

After relaunching, I tried the game in Fullscreen mode which worked better (though left the gnome panels at top and bottom of the page for me) and also improved video framerates.  Amazingly for such an old game it still has very low framerates, and struggles with multiple NPC’s on the screen at one time – similar to it’s successor Oblivion, when running on Linux and compared to Windows framerates…

Overall the game is very playable. I look forward to returning to Morrowind for a longer stay next time I have a holiday!

1400 x 1050 – Fullscreen – Pixel Shading On – View Distance Far – Real Time Shadows Off

1) Changing default key options crashes the game

(thanks to – the below info is duplicated here just in case the original page disappears)


Multiple Users

If you plan on running Morrowind as a different user than the one that originally installed it, change the permissions of Morrowind.ini to be writable by other users. Invoking the chmod command can enable group write permissions, while the chgrp command can ensure the file belongs to a shared group.

chmod g+w Morrowind.ini chgrp users Morrowind.ini

Suggested Changes

  • Reduce the load on the CPU by capping the FPS. Set it to your monitor’s refresh rate or a little lower.

;; Reduce CPU load

  • Increase stability in the game by not preloading the next cell. You will see the ‘loading exterior screen’ dialog a lot more.

;; Reduce crashes

  • Increase performance in the game by using less RAM and by extension swap. You will see the ‘loading exterior screen’ dialog a lot more.

Never set these values to 0 or you’ll lose your companions, creatures, followers at each zone change !

;; Improve Performace ;; The Buffers are measured in game Cells. Settings these too high will cause slow downs ;; after a bit of traveling. The defaults are 10 and 32, but for better preformance try:
Interior Cell Buffer=1
Exterior Cell Buffer=9


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11 Responses to “The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind”

  1. Chris says:

    Morrowind downloaded, but isn’t playing for me using:

    Ubuntu Lucid 10.04
    WINE 1.3.26
    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260

    Error message: “The program Morrowind.exe has encountered a serious problem and needs to close. We are sorry for the inconvenience.”

    • Necron99 says:

      Do you have other games / overrides / winetricks installed on that steam? Are you running steam in it’s own prefix ( $ wintricks steam to install) or in the default .wine prefix? Are you running the NVIDIA drivers for Ubuntu? I will try to get a .VERB installer for this game up soon…

    • Necron99 says:

      Does the initial launcher come up? NOTE: some custom mods won’t work… though the base game should. I am re-testing this game ASAP and will update this game test…

  2. Chris says:

    Hi Necron,

    1) I have winetricks installed, but Morrowind is the only game I have installed on Steam.
    2) I believe I’m running Steam in the default .wine prefix.
    3) I am running NVIDIA driver version 195.36.24 for Linux x-86 (?)
    4) Steam starts and connects, but when I open All Games and click Play I see a very brief messages that says “Preparing to install…” before the error above.

    • Necron99 says:

      Ok – I’m having issues with Morrowind as well at the moment using wine 1.3.28… things to try:

      1) make sure Compiz is OFF
      2) right click Morrowind in Steam > Properties > Verify Game Files
      3) open terminal and do: winetricks d3dx9
      4) then: winetricks vcrun6sp6
      5) do winecfg – check that sound is set to emulation

      I’m in the process of updating this game test and will post if I can get it going :)

    • Necron99 says:

      6) in winecfg applications add Morrowind.exe and set to use Windows 98 – do same for Morrowind Launcher.exe (just browse to and add them + set version : don’t forget to hit Apply)

      I have it running now :)

      • Chris says:

        Success! Many thanks for your help, Necron. :)

        Just for the record, I was unable to find Morrowind.exe or Morrowind Launcher.exe using winecfg applications (where should these files be?), so I set Steam to use Windows 98. This gave me the message “Turn off compatibility mode” when attempting to load Steam. The accompanying instructions suggested right clicking Steam.exe, but I was unable to find this option. I set Steam back to Windows XP, and the game is now loading, though it seems reluctant to give me a full screen view. I’ll let you know how I get on once I’ve played around a bit.

        Thanks again,


      • SORE-LOSER says:

        I had gotten it running through PlayonLinux and a .dll that I had found on a forum, PlayonLinux picked the version and the Distro was Linux Mint Debian Edition. (good luck on the .dll, that was a few Distro’s ago…)

      • AtomSpy says:

        I got it working but after some time it crashes.

        Ubuntu 12.04, AMD Radeon HD 6300 series graphics, AMD dual core processor, 4GB DDR3 RAM.
        Please help!

  3. Arthur says:

    I have this working but I wanted to comment on one issue. If you want to change the default key binding you have to do it directly in the registry because the changing a key binding in the game will crash it.

    Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Bethesda Softworks\Morrowind

    you can just run wine’s regedit to make changes. On a side note you have change the resolution and the like to things that are not supported directly by the game which is handy.

    The codes used to identify keys are not any standard I know if here is a list of some of them (many lifted from a post by Liam Whalen at

    Morrowind Key Codes

    Mouse 0: 02010302
    Mouse 1: 02020000
    Mouse 2: 02030303

    MWheelUp: 02090000
    MWheelDown: 020a0000

    =: 010e0000
    -: 010d0000

    Q: 01110000

    Left Ctrl: 011e0305

    Space: 13a0301
    E: 1130307

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If you have anything to add to this game test, please feel free to comment. Do post your Wine Version, Linux Flavour and graphics card drivers = NVIDIA or ATI! Help each other out and be nice to one another :)

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