Fixing the PC version of SADX

This page will tell you how to improve your SADX experience on PC.

First, let’s have a look at some mods that fix issues in SADX, make it more like the Dreamcast version or just improve it in general:

  • SADX Fixed Edition (SADXFE) by SonicFreak94 – fixes a bunch of bugs in the 2004 PC port and adds some minor features. Does not restore Dreamcast assets.
  • Dreamcast Conversion by PkR – restores Dreamcast levels, textures, object models, special effects, menus, branding, etc.
  • Lantern Engine (Dreamcast lighting) by SonicFreak94 – recreates the LANTERN lighting engine from the Dreamcast version in the PC port.
  • Input Mod by SonicFreak94 (built into the Mod Loader as of November 2023) – fixes issues with XInput controllers (spinning camera bug etc.) and some DInput controllers. It’s also compatible with all kinds of DInput controllers, so it’s a must have for anyone using controllers to play the game.
  • Dreamcast Characters Pack by ItsEasyActually – restores Dreamcast character models, includes a different Metal Sonic model and the stretchy feet effect.
  • SADX Onion Skin Blur by SonicFreak94 – restores Sonic’s running “motion blur” effect like in the Japanese version of SA1. Looks best with Dreamcast Characters’ stretchy feet effect!
  • HD GUI 2 by PkR & others – adds high-resolution textures for menus, HUD, tutorials etc.
  • Sound Overhaul 3 by PkR – fixes a lot of sound bugs described in the Sound and Music section and replaces most sound effects with higher-quality sounds ripped from the Dreamcast version.
  • Super Sonic by Kell – allows to transform into Super Sonic during regular gameplay after beating the Final story.
  • Time of Day by PkR – if you’ve beaten the story, you can change the time of day by taking the train between Station Square and the Mystic Ruins.
  • Dreamcast DLC by PkR – this mod recreates Dreamcast-exclusive SA1 DLC content in the PC port.
  • SADX Style Water by PkR – this mod restores the ocean wave effect in Emerald Coast and fixes a few problems with the SADX version of the level without reverting it to the Dreamcast version.

Now let’s see how to install these mods. Thanks to the SADX Mod Loader it’s possible to mod the 2004 PC port without altering the game’s executable or resources. With the Mod Loader you can enable or disable various mods and codes, and you can always just turn off the Mod Loader to revert to the original version of the game. Installing SADX mods is relatively easy, but there are also mod installers that can set up everything for you in one go. If you’re getting started with SADX mods, you can use a mod installer.

There are two mod installers: BetterSADX and SADX Mod Installer. BetterSADX is meant for the Steam version, while the Mod Installer is universal. Both installers replace the Steam version’s executable with the 2004 version to enable Mod Loader support, and install the Mod Loader and some of the popular mods. The installers have a slightly different selection of mods and use different approaches to patching the PC version and installing mods, but the end result is effectively the same.

Assuming you’ve installed and arranged the mods let’s discuss their configuration. Some mods come with configurable settings, which can be customized in the Mod Loader’s config editor – just select the mod and press “Configure…”. The options are self-explanatory for the most part. Here are some options you can change in Dreamcast Conversion:

  • Title screen customization (logo size, ripple effect etc.), enable or disable Cream cameos
  • Enable or disable individual levels/bosses, as well as Dreamcast-related branding
  • Enable or disable alternative water textures that look more like SADX water
  • Enable or disable the Cowgirl from the Japanese version of SA1
  • Dreamcast Chao Gardens: enable or disable individual Chao Garden replacements and the Chao Race lobby
  • Enable or disable the ingame water ripple effect from the Dreamcast version
  • Enable or disable the original subtitle fonts, as well as their colorization
  • Enable or disable FMV colorization and smoother FMV skip transition
  • And many more!

Here are some options for other mods:

  • Dreamcast DLC – “vanilla SADX mode” to make the DLC content work without Dreamcast levels, run different DLCs during different months, select which extra Twinkle Circuit each character goes to etc.
  • Input Mod: this mod has a lot of configuration options that are listed on the mod’s page
  • Dreamcast Characters Pack: toggle between the low-poly Sky Chase models and higher quality models that the original game used only in cutscenes, enable or disable the stretchy feet effect completely or after the Light Speed Shoes are obtained, enable or disable the alternative Metal Sonic model

Here are some comparison shots:

DreamcastPC originalPC modded

In addition, the SADX Mod Installer has the following comparison for Dreamcast Conversion and Lantern Engine (warning: large image).

Keep in mind: while the mods restore a lot of Dreamcast assets, they aren’t completely identical to the Dreamcast version, and some things are still missing. For a list of issues and things that haven’t been restored, you can check out the issue trackers for Dreamcast Conversion, Dreamcast Characters Pack and Lantern Engine, as well as the “What’s still missing” page on ModDB.

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