FAQ: Electronic Games
First you should check if you installed the current version of Catan – Cities & Knights. The program has an update mechanism that you have to activate manually. When you start the program, in the first window you will find a button named “Look for updates.” If you click on this button, a message will indicate whether new updates are available; they can be downloaded by clicking on the button again. The updates are installed automatically.
If you still have problems with the program, here are two ways to get assistance:
- The PlayCatan Forum has a section dedicated exclusively to Catan – Cities & Knights. On the “Technical Problems” board, issues concerning the program are discussed and assistance is offered.
- You can contact our service team via e-mail. Please provide the following information:
- Which program version do you use?
(You can find the specifications at the center right side of the small window that appears when you start the program, for example “1.221”).
- Which operating system do you have?
- What’s the system configuration? (Processor, RAM, graphics card)
- Please describe the problem as exactly as possible.
- Which program version do you use?
If a program error has occurred (e.g., a crash), it usually helps to attach the err.log file to your e-mail. The err.log file can be found in the Catan – Cities & Knights installation directory, subdirectory “/Client.” Please zip the file before sending it (e.g. with the free 7-Zip) – it can be quite large.
To test whether the performance of Catan – Cities & Knights is sufficient when running on your system, you should try the free trial version. Furthermore, you can optimize the program for older and less powerful systems via the game options:
On slower computers the resource or dice animation may become jerky. If this bothers you, you can switch off the resource animation (e.g., during production) in the options menu. The options menu may either be accessed via the main menu or, during a game, via the “Options” button in the upper button bar. If you would like to display message boxes instead of animations, please set the option “Animation” to “OFF.” In addition, you can also switch off the water animation via the option “Water” and thus improve performance.
Catan - Cities & Knights is a 32-bit program and needs the 32-bit Java version. If only the 64-bit Java version is installed on a 64-bit operating system like Windows Vista 64-bit, the installer additionally installs the 32-bit Java version. The 64-bit Java version can still be used by 64-bit programs.
On slower computers the resource or dice animation may become jerky. If this bothers you, we recommend that you switch off the water animation via the option “Water.” In case this doesn't take care of the problem, you can also switch off the resource animation (e.g., during production) in the options menu. The options menu may either be accessed via the main menu or, during a game, via the “Options” button in the upper button bar. If you would like to display message boxes instead of animations, please set the option “Animation” to “OFF.”
The computer I use for playing Catan C&K doesn’t have Internet connection. How can I install an update regardless?
If the computer you play “Catan – Cities & Knights” on doesn’t have its own Internet connection, you can also download an update as an independent installer and then use, for example, a USB stick to copy it to your destination computer.
The update to Windows version 1.231 is available here.
(There is no stand-alone update available for Mac OS X at them moment.)
However, if the computer has its own Internet connection, we would definitely recommend that you install the updates via the program’s manual update function.
This problem occurs only rarely and seems to be rooted in an incompatibility between the graphics card and Java. Unfortunately, we were not able to reproduce this problem on our test systems; however, the following solutions - independently of each other - helped affected users remedy the issue:
- Update the graphics card driver. You can obtain the latest driver versions on your graphics card manufacturer’s website.
- Update the Java version to 1.6_13 (or newer). You can obtain the latest Java version at www.java.com.
- Change the screen display to 16 bit. In Windows, you can change this setting as follows:
- Right-click on the desktop.
- Select “Graphics Properties.”
- Under “Display Settings,” set the color quality to 16 bit.
Appearance: When you start the game, a German error message appears (“Schwerer Fehler”), and the program shuts down after confirming the message.
In this case, an installed firewall (e.g., ZoneAlarm) is blocking the program. Even though “Catan – Cities & Knights” does not establish an Internet connection, some firewall applications require that you enable the program for local use. When you first start the program, a firewall settings window usually asks you whether the program should be allowed access. Please confirm this so the program can run smoothly. Should this access query not appear, access may have been denied on a previous occasion. In this case, please check your firewall settings and look for the program javaw.exe.
Follow-up: With Version 1.228 this problem should not occur anymore.
The program freezes when starting the second scenario (or the individual scenario "Through the Desert") in the Campaign game.
The problem is that due to some incompatible language settings, the name of the second scenario cannot be read by the program.
- Please go to the Windows system preferences -> Time, Language and Region
- Open "Change Date, Time and Number format"
- Set Format to "English (USA)"
Windows Vista / Windows 7:
Please go to the Windows system preferences -> Time, Language and Region
Open "Change Date, Time and Number format"
Set Format to "English (USA)"
Go to the tab "Administrative"
Open "Change System Locale" in section "Language for non-Unicode programs"
Set Language to "English (USA)"
On rare occasions, this problem may arise in older program versions if an error occurred during an update.
In this case, please copy the file drop.png right-click and select “Save in”) into the folder
inside the “Catan – Cities and Knights” installation folder (normally “c:\Program Files\Catan\Catan – Cities and Knights”).
The file err.log stores important status outputs of the program. Errors occurring during operation will also be recorded there. That is why this error log often greatly helps the programmers to find out about program errors.
Depending on the Windows version you are using, you will find the err.log in the following folder:
- Old Installer (up to and including 1.230):
C:\Program Files\Catan\Catan - Cities and Knights\Client\
or alternatively in C:\Program Files (x86)\
- New installer (1.231 or newer):
- Windows XP:
C:\Documents and Settings\Username\Applicatan Data\CatanSuR\Client\
- Windows Vista / Windows 7:
- Windows XP:
To access this folder, open the Windows Explorer via the start menu (Start / (All) Programs / Accessories) or by simultaneously pressing Win-E (the Windows key on the lower left of your keyboard together with the letter E).
If the file extensions are hidden for known file types (standard setting), the file is simply called “err” (without “.log”).
The file is continued every time you start the program. If you completely uninstall and then reinstall the program, an empty err.log file will be created in the above-mentioned folder.
Mac OS X:
Please switch to your home directory by pressing Cmd-Shift-H in the Finder. In it you will find your personal “Applications” folder containing the “Catan” folder, which, in turn, contains the ”Catan - Cities & Knights” application icon.
Right-click on this icon (or click on it while holding down the Ctrl key) and select “Show package content.”
From there, go to /Contents/Resources/CSR/Client, which is where the err.log is located.
During the respective program run on Windows or Mac OS X, the err.log file will be filled with status messages and, if applicable, with error messages. Please e-mail the file to our service team for closer examination (if possible, compressed - e.g., with 7-Zip (free download)).
- Old Installer (up to and including 1.230):
This problem may occur in the Mac version when you use the “Full-Screen Mode” option, because of an incompatibility issue in the Apple's version of Java.
This problem will be resolved in a later Catan - Cities & Knights update. Until then, you can avoid this problem
by switching off the “Full-Screen Mode” in the options menu (accessible from the main menu), or
by exchanging a file in the “Catan - Cities & Knights” program. To do so, please download the file prof.png. Please go to the Applications folder or wherever you installed the program icon “Catan - Cities & Knights.” Right-click on “Catan - Cities & Knights” (or click on it while holding down the Ctrl key) and select “Show package content.” Go to /Contents/Resources/CSR/Client/ntoolPics/ and exchange the file prof.png with the downloaded one.
You need the 32-bit version of Java, regardless of whether your system is 32-bit or 64-bit. You can get the newest version of Java on www.java.com. (Java is also included in the Catan - Cities & Knights installer.)