Mechcommander Gold high resolution

Mechcommander Gold defaults to 640×480 resolution with no way of changing it through the menu options. You can however increase the resolution manually through prefs.cfg which, when combined with increased zoom level, can give the game an HD effect:

  1. Open prefs.cfg in a text editor. pref.cfg is located in the root directory of your MCX installation (e.g. C:\Program Files\MCX\prefs.cfg)
  2. Set resolution=3 to change resolution to 1280×1024. On the line before “FITend”  add the following (if you don’t have it already): l Resolution=3
    Different numbers here represent the different available resolutions:
    0 -> 640×480
    1 -> 800×600
    2 -> 1024×768
    3 -> 1280×1024
    Note – This will only affect your in-game resolution. The menu resolution will remain unchanged!
    Note – Setting the resolution higher than what is supported by your monitor will cause the game to crash!
    I’ve included a screenshot of my own prefs.cfg file below as an example:
  3. (Optional) Increase the in game zoom level. Now that you’re got a larger resolution you could optionally zoom in as you should have a much larger view area. To do this, while in a mission press ‘+‘  to get a zoomed in view. You can now use this view to play the game as the large resolution combined with the zoom will allow you to see roughly the same amount of mission area as you could before but with much more detail.

As a comparison I’ve taken screenshots of the default resolution and the highest resolution zoomed in. The visible mission area is almost the same but the level of detail in the second picture is much higher (the second picture is also much bigger than it appears from the preview, click through to see the full size):
mcx_high_resEnjoy some nicer graphs :)

If you’ve followed the above steps and are still having trouble with Mechcommander Gold high resolution settings, please post in the comments below. To increase your chances of a solution being found include as much detail as possible (which version of the game you’re running, what operating system you have, what video card you have and steps to reproduce the issue). Screenshots are also very useful! It would be very helpful if you could also include the contents of your prefs.cfg file.

    October 24, 2013 at 10:15 am

    This doesn’t work. I’ve tried various numbers, but 0-4 does nothing to my game. Maybe it’s due to my monitor size; I don’t know. It’s a 16 by 10. I guess I’ll have to play it with regular graphics. But the game doesn’t look bad running in full screen. It’s no worse than I remember.

      I’m going to double check this tonight but it seems like you may have missed step #3 -> pressing ‘+‘ in game to increase the zoom level. Also keep in mind increasing the resolution through prefs.cfg does not change your menu resolution, only your in game resolution.

      The zoomed level of MCG is at a higher resolution, but normally not really useful for playing the game as you can only see a small portion of the battlefield. That’s where increasing the in game resolution comes into play to increase the available view area, and ‘fake’ a high resolution version for the game.

      Looking back this post is somewhat poorly written. I’ll update it and maybe add some comparison screenshots.

      Also I don’t think the monitor aspect should affect changing the setting. I also have 16/10 monitor.

        Post has been updated. If you’re still having issues please post your prefs.cfg file and I’ll take a look :)

          June 15, 2016 at 1:13 pm

          I changed the resolution and that is working how ever it will not let me zoom in. it says its been disabled. also I can not get the LAN options to work. Is there an update or other change I need to make?

    November 23, 2013 at 3:21 pm

    Nope, this doesn’t work on my iMac27 / Crossover… Unfortunately… The game runs flawlessly though, it\s just if I could run it on a higher resolution mode – perfect!

    Any suggestions?

    My cnfg file is literally copy&paste version of yours… Dunno why it is not working… Any suggestions?

      Can you possibly copy paste the contents of your pref.cfg here? Even extra spaces or tabs might cause it not to pick up settings properly.

    November 23, 2013 at 5:32 pm

    Hi… it is here… I tried with many variations… So…


    b PaletteCycle=FALSE
    b DirectDraw=TRUE
    b Use90Pixel=TRUE
    b Force45Pixel=FALSE
    b Force16Mb=FALSE
    b Force32Mb=FALSE
    l Difficulty=1
    l Brightness=0
    l MusicVolume=64
    l RadioVolume=64
    l SFXVolume=96
    l Resolution=3


    November 23, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    I mean… Does this work with Expansion ONLY, or both Classic and Expansion campaigns?

      I tried copy pasting the contents of your prefs.cfg into mine and it still greatly increased the resolution. Try switching between Resolution=3 and Resolution=1 to see if you notice any differences. Perhaps it’s a limitation of running on your iMac27 / Crossover?

      Also yeah these settings should work for both Mechcommander Gold and Mechcommander. Make sure you haven’t accidentally change the prefs.cfg extension to be like prefs.cfg.txt or something.

    January 11, 2014 at 4:10 am

    You need to make your file read-only after you edit it, otherwise the game will change it back to default. That is the case with a lot of these kind of files.

    February 2, 2014 at 12:43 pm

    Hello, i have problem with this. Changing the resolution to 1 or 2 works but changing this option to Resolution=3 fails to start the game and returns error:

    ASSERT (80004001 – Unable to Set Display Mode )
    Address : 0x0060DDD7
    Location : No .PDB file found
    File : No .PDB file found

    0x00613850 aSystem::start() +0xC40 G:\mcx\gui\Asystem.cpp(4884)
    0x00610EA7 RealWinMain() +0x2C7 G:\mcx\gui\Asystem.cpp(3074)
    0x0075F82A WinMain() +0xCA L:\mcx\rmain.cpp(74)
    0x00762CF2 WinMainCRTStartup() +0xCE

    Machine Details
    Executable name : C:\MechCommander\MCX.EXE
    Current time, date : 20:12:16 Sunday 2/2/2014
    Executable time, date : 15:02:58 Monday 7/26/1999
    User name :
    Machine name :
    Processor : GenuineIntel Pentium II MMX
    Operating system :
    Version : 4.10.2222
    Time since booted : 0h 31m 24s
    Physical memory : 267,862,016 bytes (255 Meg)
    Available physical memory : 235,843,584 bytes (224 Meg)
    Swapfile size : 1,879,617,536 bytes (1792 Meg)
    Swapfile available : 1,860,378,624 bytes (1774 Meg)
    Virtual memory : 2,143,289,344 bytes (2044 Meg)
    Available virtual memory : 1,997,266,944 bytes (1904 Meg)
    Memory load : 5%

    PCI bus
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by
    (Version ) by

    ISA bus

    DLL Version numbers
    amstream.dll – Version 6.6.7600.16385
    quartz.dll – Version 6.6.7600.16385
    devenum.dll – Version 6.6.7600.16385
    dsound.dll – Version
    dinput.dll – Version
    Could not find ‘d3dhalf.dll’
    d3dim.dll – Version
    ddraw.dll – Version
    dplayx.dll – Version
    Could not find ‘dplay.dll’
    ntdll.dll – Version 6.1.7600.16385
    rpcrt4.dll – Version 4.00.1073
    Ir50_32.dll – Version R.

    Information returned by Game

    ScenarioTime: 000.00
    ScenarioTurn: 0
    MoverUpdateFreq: 000.00
    TurretUpdateFreq: 000.00
    WorldStateUpdateFreq: 000.00
    WeaponFireUpdateFreq: 000.00
    MissionAppName :
    DrawingVFXElement :
    VFXType :

    Im running Windows 7 64bit on ASUS zenbook.

    Heres my prefs.cfg file how it looks:

    b PaletteCycle=FALSE
    b DirectDraw=TRUE
    b Use90Pixel=TRUE
    b Force45Pixel=FALSE
    b Force16Mb=FALSE
    b Force32Mb=FALSE
    l Difficulty=2
    l Brightness=0
    l MusicVolume=33
    l RadioVolume=79
    l SFXVolume=97
    l Resolution=3


      I think if the resolution that you’re trying to set is higher than your screen resolution this could happen. What is your current desktop resolution? It needs to be at least 1280×1024.

        February 3, 2014 at 2:10 pm


        As im playing this on notebook it has some weird aspect. The resolution on my notebook is 1366×768 which may indeed explain the problem im describing since my vertical resolution is only 768.

          That seems quite likely. If you can increase your notebook’s resolution, try that and then set Resolution=3 again. If you can’t you might be constrained to Resolution=2 :( . It should still be a considerable improvement over the default thought, so it’s worth doing!

            February 4, 2014 at 3:47 am

            Unfortunately i cant increase resolution on my notebook further so im stuck with resolution=2 but ill install mechcommander on my Desktop to see how it looks with resolution=3. Thanks again for the help. :)

    February 2, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    Also can i ask how i can run this game in windowed mode as i can see it on your screenshots?

      I never ended up following with you about this. Have you tried the hi-res patcher yourself? I tried downloading it but it’s being flagged as malware

    July 6, 2014 at 2:32 pm

    This works great and your tip to zoom in after the higher res is a master stroke, the whole game looks gorgeous, and the fact you can zoom out again anyway for a wider picture is really useful.

    Just breathed new life into this game for me so thanks!

    On a side note, it changed the resolution on everything for me. The intro video, the menu screens… everything.

    Odd that we all seem to be having different experiences… but I’m thankful for your tips all the same!

      I’m so glad to hear it worked for you, and that you’re enjoying the higher resolution! I added the tip to zoom in simply because I didn’t know it existed (and that it was so crisp looking) until recently.

      And it is odd that we’re experiencing different menu resolutions. This is what my game looks like (I could only take a screenshot in windowed mode):

      When in game though, the resolution is normal.

    July 11, 2014 at 9:21 pm

    today, tonight i instal MCX and have really long wire connection, so i open these sites to remind me about ISObuster to set virtual CD to start the game. thanks a lot, bye!

    July 12, 2014 at 12:43 am

    ok, i have problem with ISO. how to open MCX as image CD to be seen by program exe to start the game? cause isobuster ver.2.8 or 3.3 not see any file from it to solve. i know i do somethin wrong, but do not know what …

      Where did you download the ISO from? Perhaps try downloading from one of the links listed here if you haven’t already.

    September 18, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    I figured it out!!!
    None of the numbers worked for me. So I copied the “1” from the other lines, it’s actually not a “1” it seems. Look closer, it almost look like an i of some kind. Not sure what character it is, but if I use it, instead of a 1. It works.
    Also, the resolution change works in the menu as well!! The menu is tiny! I mean, that isn’t ideal but it’s exciting this worked! I hope all this makes sense, if not please ask.

      Haha yeah it isn’t a 1 it’s a lower case “L”. I’m glad you figured it out! Enjoy :)

        September 19, 2014 at 12:12 pm

        Duh! An L!
        So if 2 and 3 don’t work, I wonder if there is corresponding characters to set those other resolutions? I will probably stick with 1280, but it would interesting to know.

        Thanks for this guide, the game is so awesome with hi-res!!

          I think you have it backwards. The “L” is the first character of the line, not what comes after the equals. So your options are as follows:
          l Resolution=0
          l Resolution=1
          l Resolution=2
          l Resolution=3

            September 20, 2014 at 11:36 am

            Jeez, yeah ignore that last post haha, and I totally had it set up with the 3. Too many stands in old duders head.

            Haha no problem dude :)

    November 24, 2015 at 12:59 pm

    Guys this post was SOOOOO helpful! The MCX.exe’s out there to adjust the res are usually unstable!! in short Lower caps “L” not “1”, make read only, and select an option INSIDE your current resolution.

    Thanks again all!!!!!

    October 2, 2017 at 10:59 am

    I know this is an old thread, but just wanted to say thanks. The screen for my old XPS died so instead of spending $150 to fix it I spent $125 for a 32″ LED monitor. Being able to change the resolution has been awesome, the graphics are amazing!

      Awesome. I’m glad to hear it worked out well for you :)

    August 23, 2021 at 1:42 pm

    What a great fix! Worked like a charm in Fullscreen with Windows 10 (64 bit)

    At wirst, I screwed the first letter in the prefs.cfg entry up. I read it as a 1 instead of an l ;-)

    Hower: my scrolling is very slow in the game and the mouse is just working in 4/5th of the screen. Maybe it’s because of my 4k Monitor and certain scaling settings I did.

      Nick D
      July 14, 2023 at 1:11 pm

      Looking all over the gods’ green web for a fix for the broken scrolling… Did you ever figure it out? Anyone else out there?

    August 25, 2021 at 1:18 pm

    Great tutorial! I confused the l with a 1 first, but now it works. But the mouse is only working in a 3/4 of the screen. Also scrolling is very slow.

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