Skip to main content

Return to Castle Wolfenstein for Modern Linux

Return to Castle Wolfenstein is a first-person shooter originally released on November 19, 2001. The game, like many other classic games, is available at and costs only US$5.99.

Don't bother with old and crusty Linux binaries offered by idsoft; they are problematic and it's painful to use them on a modern Linux. Fortunately for us, there are more modern GPL-licensed Linux binaries available for 32- and 64-bit systems as well as high resolution textures packages. The project at GitHub provides source code that can also be compiled for MS Windows using MinGW.

You can download pre-compiled binaries for 32- and 64-bit Linux, MS Windows and Mac from here. Let's put our files in /usr/local/games/rtcw. As root, extract the downloaded .ZIP file for your architecture to /usr/local/games/rtcw. All we are missing are the game data files. I purchased them from

The game installer downloaded from can be unpacked using innoextract, as can most any GOG game. The innoextract website has more details on extracting GOG installers. The only things you will need from the Windows version of the game are the are the *.pk3 files that contain the the game data, plus the autoexec.cfg file and the /scripts sub-directory. They will go in the /main directory of the game. Create symlinks to the mp and sp binaries from the game directory to /usr/local/bin. I keep the standard names, wolfsp and wolfmp.

If you are going the WINE route, you'll need that game installer from GOG. The game runs well using the GOG installer with WINE, PlayonLinux and Crossover. HOWEVER, you should install the unofficial patch from Knightmare, aka patch 1.42d if you have crashes on startup.

It is also possible to use the iortcw binaries for Windows, especially if you want to use a 64-bit binary.

The Venom Mod
The Venom Mod is an improved game look and feel. You can

Hi-Res Textures
High resolution textures are available at the website. They provide installation instructions.

If you have already played through the game (or not), you can download a saved game that will unlock all the levels.


Return to Castle Wolfenstein at Wikipedia

RTCW Linux binaries Download

RTCW hi-res textures

Does this run in WINE?

Saved Games

2010 DirectX Runtime Package

DirectX Web installer

Control/Input Lag? Change VSYNC setting in video driver

Missing DLL Files

Missing Linux Libraries (


Unknown said…
I play this game all the time with my nephews. It's good to know that I can still play it with Linux. Thank you for the article!

Popular posts from this blog

DOS4GW.EXE Version 2.01a and Alternative DOS Extenders

The TenberryDOS extender DOS4GW.EXE was used by many early DOS games. I still enjoy playing many of these games and DOS4GW.EXE is usable with DOSBox, so they can be played on Linux.

However, the version of DOS4GW.EXE that was included with the game was whatever was current at the time. The most recent version that includes many bugfixes that possibly affected the games when used with DOSBox have been fixed in the latest version, 2.01a.

It's not free at US$49, but you can downloaded it here. Simply substitute it for whatever version of DOS4GW.EXE your game provided and enjoy the bug-fixed goodness. Tenberry also makes a "high-performance" "pro" version of DOS4GW.EXE, but it costs $300. I think that they could sell quite a few of these to hobby users (since, you know, DOS is dead) for US$5.

Open Souce to the Rescue
There are better performing, free and Open Source alternatives available and worth a look.

DPMI Explained
But first, let's understand w…

Unreal Tournament GOTY/UT99 for Modern Linux

Released on November 16, 1999, Unreal Tournament (also known as UT99) is an arena first-person shooter for Multiplayer on-line competition or you cam play against bots off-line. It features several game types, with more details provided at Wikipedia. The game was re-released on February 25, 2000 as Unreal Tournament Game of the Year Edition (GOTY) which included the three bonus packs released previously and additional mods, or game modifiers that had become popular. It is the GOTY version that is available from STEAM of

The GOG version for Windows installs in Linux and plays well using WINE, PlayOnLinux or Codeweaver's Crossover.

There is a Linux binary available in two versions, one for the original game and one for the GOTY edition. Also provided at that site is the Official Bonus Pack with a Linux installer. All these Linux installers are created with makeself.

There are some issues using such a crusty old Linux binary. Let's see why getting a Linux binary up and …