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Graphic Problems History

It seems VSK was created with some errors in graphic presentation but the old Windows/Graphic Card/Graphic Driver were also not perfect and so these errors did not matter.
Then about 2 years ago, the new drivers began to display the errors and you could not run the game - the menus were just coloured blocks (shown below). But if you had a new card with an old driver, you were ok and could run VSK.
Then the companies released new graphic cards which would not work, even with old drivers.
So DxWnd allowed the game to run by forcing the drawing of the graphics using the old imperfect system and you could run the game with good graphics.
But then the Windows 10 'Fall Creator' (1709) update downgraded the graphics again, even if you use DxWnd, although you can still run the game and play.

Using DxWnd to Run Virtual Skipper

Many new graphic cards and drivers dont display VSK properly. The launcher window is normal, but when the game starts, the menus are unreadable and the game cannot be played. An application Called DxWnd can be used to emulate the old graphic displays and will allow Virtual Skipper to work. If this is your problem, here is some info to help. Credits to 'Gho', the DxWnd developer and to 'Raskil' who found the solution for VSK.


How to use DxWnd

1. Go to the home page of DxWnd and download it. Extract the files anywhere on your PC where you can find them again.
2. Double click to run dxwnd.exe.
3. Select 'Options : Expert Mode'.
4. Select 'Edit : Add'.
5. Put any name you like in the 'Name' Box. (for example, 'VSK'.
6. Use File Explorer to navigate to Program Files (x86)/Vsk5 (or your vsk version).
7. Drag & Drop Vsk5.exe into the Path Box, and drop Vsk5Launcher.exe into the Launch Box.
8. Still in the 'Main' tab, Uncheck 'Run in Window'.
9. In 'Tweaks' Tab, select 'ddraw:ForcesHEL' and click the Green '+' button to make it active.
10. In 'Libs' tab, uncheck 'Remap Client Rect'.
11. Click 'OK'. Then select 'File : Save'.

Double click the VSK icon in the DxWnd box to run the game.
You will always have to start VSK in this way now, so you can put a shortcut to DxWnd.exe on your desktop.

For most skippers who have this graphic problem, this configuration will work but for me it did not, until I made the following change to solve my problem. However this is at the expense of blurring of the spinnaker skin and the instrument numbers. So only do the following things if you have to.
12. Select 'Edit : Modify'.
13. In 'Direct3D' tab, select 'mixed' under 'Force Vertex Processing'.
14. Click 'OK' and 'File : Save' again.

Helpful Links:

Nadeo Virtual Skipper Forum - The topic with the DxWnd info

Home Page of DxWnd

DxWnd Discussion page


There is advice on the DxWnd discussion pages that it's best to run DxWnd 'as administrator' but I found that for VSK, this is not necessary, and it actually prevented Autohotkey from running in the game. (Maybe it would need to be run as administrator too).

The game behaves normally, as far as I can see and the skins and GUI files are seen as usual.

It seems you can use DxWnd to run many older games and the developer has provided configurations for them which you access by 'File' : 'Import...' : [DxWnd Files location/Exports]

Screenshots of DxWnd Configurarions