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Posted: July 22, 2000
Written by: Dan "Tweak Monkey" Kennedy
This guide was originally a freelance piece written for Incite PC Gaming magazine. However, I was never paid for my work so I have published the guide.
Motocross Madness 2 is action packed and full of very quick gameplay. While this is the selling point, it also creates certain problems. If you've played the game before, you can probably relate to this scenario:
You're riding a Baja track and you're in first place. There are only a few more gates left and you'll be done. But right as you start to turn for the next to last gate, your hard drive reads -- for only a split second -- and locks your PC for only an instant. This split second is enough to cause your bike to make some very awkward move that causes you to miss the checkpoint and fly past it at nearly 100 MPH. You try to turn around and redeem yourself, but alas, you finish dead last.
This guide will help you prevent such problems from occurring by tweaking Motocross Madness 2 for two reasons: better frame rate and better memory performance. These seem to be the two biggest issues with the game.
The absolute first step when tweaking any hardware or software is to update your PC's drivers. The most important drivers to update for tweaking a game are your video card drivers. You can download updated drivers from WinDrivers.com.
It's also a good idea to check out the Motocross Madness 2 page to see if updates have been released. Updates for games (or "patches") will fix known problems and sometimes boost performance. Also, read the readme file included with the game to check for quick fixes and known problems.
Prior to starting Motocross Madness 2 (or any game for that matter), make sure you have closed all other programs that you don't need for the game, including RealPlayer, ICQ, Internet Explorer, and other such programs. These take up valuable memory and they may take away from the performance of the game. If you can't close all of the programs you wanted to close, hit the CTRL, ALT, and DELETE keys on your keyboard at the same time. A menu will pop-up that will ask what programs you wish to close. If there are any programs that you are sure you don't need, you can select them and choose "End Task" to close them. The more memory MCM2 has available, the less it should have to use the Windows swap file, which often slows down the game significantly.
Also keep in mind that the system requirements for this game call for at least 64 MB of system RAM. If your system falls short of this mark, you can probably expect excessive hard drive access, longer loading times, and occasional pauses in action for hard drive reads.
To ensure that MCM2 runs great and makes good use of its memory, there are a few steps you can take before you even start the game. Sometime when you have plenty of time, consider defragging your hard drive. This is a simple process and you've probably heard of it several times. Close all other programs in Windows, then go to the Start menu, and choose Run. Type defrag and then hit OK. It will take a while once it has started, but hard drive access is greatly optimized.
Another useful tip involves a simple BIOS tweak. To access the BIOS setup of your PC, reboot. When it is booting up (when you first turn the power on), you should see a message that says something similar to "Push DEL to Setup". Push the corresponding key and access the BIOS setup. Search around for the options that say "Video BIOS Shadow", "Video RAM Cacheable", and "Video BIOS Cacheable" or something similar. Disable these options. Write down any settings you changed in case you have to change them back. Save your settings and exit, then reboot into Windows.