Beasts & Bumpkins
Windows - 1997
Description of Beasts & Bumpkins
Beasts and Bumpkins is a great Settlers-style gem that is one of the very few games from software giant Electronic Arts that were released very quietly without any marketing hype, and only in Europe.
And that's a shame, because in contrast to many hyped-but-horrible games EA put out, BNB is entertaining and very charming. Tim Chown's Games Domain's strategy editor, says it all in his review about what makes the game well worth a look, although by no means a classic: "...What I found was a game that indeed wasn't worthy of a full price sale, but one with a lot of new game ideas and reasonable value as a bargain bin buy. Or it is if the Settlers style of "cute" game is your thing. The cuteness factor probably comes from the apparent European influence on the game, which is credited as "Demons et Manants" in the title screen, hinting at a French connection.
The game itself has the same village building nature as Settlers, but it's presented in something of a simpler way. Putting aside the perils of the game world, your prime goal is to expand your population, providing food, water and anything else needed to keep your subjects happy.
The innovative slant on Beasts and Bumpkins is that your population must grow by "natural" means - you don't build or buy new villagers, you need a frisky man and woman to nip off into a hut for a bit of nookie to get a baby, which then may grow into a boy or girl, assuming the wolves don't get it first. If you want a soldier you have to send a young man to a guard tower and train him for cash (which you raise by charging for water and food). If you later want a villager back, you can demob the footman back to farm duty. The game clock runs continuously - you can't pause to give orders - and time is split into four seasons which in turn are split by night-time phases. It takes a few seasons for babies to grow to adults, and an adult may live for four or five game years, depending on food and water supply. As long as you provide food, housing, water, and you don't get attacked, you should expand nicely by surviving on wheat, bread, cattle and milk. Wheat is planted in spring and harvested in the autumn, cows can be lured into fenced fields where they can be milked.
The "Sim Village" part of the game isn't too complex, is quite well implemented, but is perhaps too repetitive in each mission. For those who like charts and graphs, there's a good selection of stats you can view to track such things as population growth, birth rate, and so on. That repetition is broken up by the tasks you're given in each mission. I haven't completed all the missions, of which there are reportedly 30, but what I've played to date has reasonable variety. Like Warcraft, the first few outings are merely tasters, asking you to grow your village to a certain population or to raise a certain amount of cash. From there, extras are added like retrieving artifacts, destroying an evil shrine, conquering enemy villages.
Missions have implicit sub-plots - in mission 6 you need to navigate through fields filled with traps, but to do that you really need to find the "reveal trap" scroll to add that spell to your wizard's repertoire. New game elements are added as the missions progress, so the game complexity (what there is of it) is ushered onto you gently. Hints and tips are delivered tutorial-style via letters which you can read. The control system is a little clumsy - while you can scroll the map easily enough bring up the building menu bar can be a little hit and miss, and it often gets in the way of your scrolling. One useful hotkey takes you back to your village center.
Beasts and Bumpkins is a game that understandably got overshadowed by Total Annihilation and Dark Reign when it came out last autumn (1997), and technically it's also well behind the likes of Warwind II. However, it does have that certain cuteness that attracted a lot of followers to Settlers, and the simpler style of play may well prove more enjoyable to many gamers. I wouldn't recommend Beasts and Bumpkins at full price - there's a lot better to be had - but at £7.99 it's a fun little purchase to help see away the days until the big name games start rolling out this summer."
Review By HOTUD
Comments and reviews
Jonathan 2021-03-23 0 point
Hi there I tried Ridges cure and all worked with the dgvoodoo except it still lags a lot. Followed the description to a tee but no joy. Any help?
YUMP 2021-03-08 -1 point
RIDGE's guide works very well, thank you very much!
Except for one single thing: with the rip version I'm unable to get past mission 15 (the win screen starts looping and won't let me progress).
The iso version on the other hand (installed using setup.exe in win95 compatibility mode and ran with no compatibility mode selected) does not seem to have such problem.
Ridge 2021-01-24 0 point
Damn, the game lags even in the small window?
dgVoodoo settings are being applied correctly? (The setup worked and saved your configs, and not the defaults? Default dgVoodoo settings lag.)
In December I reverse engineered the lag quite a bit, I could produce lagging:
- if the dgVoodoo config was wrong (or the path to it was wrong in dgVoodooCpl),
- if the regsetup was not run last,
- if the D3D files were missing
I am not sure if compatibility tinkering helps in this matter, I did not apply any compatibility rules to my files.
If you want, could you list everything you did, step by step? Chances are you might even find out yourself in the process if something is missing.
Beastssss 2021-01-15 0 point
Hey ridge i did the things you listed but was still laggy as hell, any suggestions? Should I have ran reg setup in compatibility mode for windows 95 instead?
RIDGE 2021-01-10 0 point
No problem, a little update - I managed finally to complete this game (all the 30 missions) for the first time since getting it in 1998, incredible!
Every glitching Mission complete screen works if you do not touch anything, let the game send you to the next mission, clicking with mouse crashes the game!
Me 2021-01-06 0 point
RIDGE, thank you very much! You are a savior! Thousand thank you ' s !!!! You are top man!
ridge 2020-12-24 0 point
I fixed the goddamn lag.
I did not find help how to do it from any page I visited, only questions.
Here is a step-by-step tutorial for Windows 10 boomer gamers:
1. Download the RIP version, screw the ISO-files.
2. Unpack to some folder
3. Download dgVoodoo2 (I used the latest, v2.72)
(Amazing project by apparently one guy btw)
4. Install dgVoodoo2
5. Open "Doc" folder
6. Read ATLEAST parts 2, 5, 6 (no shortcutting!)
7. Now that you gained knowledge how dgVoodoo works, copy the right files from MS folder to your Beasts & Bumpkins installation folder
(On Windows10 that means: Dgvoodoo2 MS x86 Just copy all the contents from here)
8. You should now have B&B folder with these files added: DDraw.dll, D3DImm.dll, D3D9.dll, D3D8.dll
9. Now, config your dgVoodoo2 settings: Open dgVoodooCpl.exe
10. You should a small window application with dropdowns and tabs
11. Use the "Add" button on the top right and navigate to your Beasts and Bumpkins install folder and press OK/Enter/Select folder
12. Select the added folder from the dropdown if it not selected
13. Next do the following selections:
- Best available one
Adapters to use:
- Your main GPU
Full screen output:
- Full screen
Progressive scanline order
Enumerate refresh rates
- Leave as is
- Keep window ratio? YES
- Capture mouse? YES
- Center app window? NO
14. Then, the DirectX settings, that Beasts and Bumpkins uses. Click DirectX tab from the top-right and select these:
Disable and passthru? NO
Videocard dgVoodoo? Virtual 3D Accelerated Card
VRAM? 512 MB
- Filtering? App driven
- Disable mipmapping? NO
- DESELECT ALL
- DESELECT ALL
15. Press apply
16. Check B&B installation folder
17. You should have "dgVoodoo.conf" file in there now
18. Run the "regsetup.exe" that comes with the RIP version of B&B
19. Check your BEASTS.EXE compatibility mode, compatibility mode should be OFF, it should have NOTHING set (this means no Windows95 or 98 selected! They cause lag!)
20. Run your Beasts.exe
21. If it launches with dgVoodoo watermark on the bottom right, your .conf file is not being used or your file was saved with wrong settings (it saved wrong shit for me even when I applied the right ones first), if not, jump to part 24.
22. If your settings are not working, open the .conf file in any text editor (I used VSCode but even notepad works here.)
23. Check all the values that should be OFF or unchecked that I mentioned, in the file they should be as "false". If they are not, change them and save the file.
24. Your game should now be SMOOTHLY running in fullscreen, or a tiny Gameboy-like window. You can press ALT+ENTER to toggle between these two modes. Sadly, there is no music, but this will do for now.
25. Enjoy the game boomer.
D 2020-12-04 1 point
The ISO version just has a BIN and CUE file inside. I know you can combine them somehow to just make an ISO but I don't know how.
Zjon 2020-10-11 0 point
Download the ISO.
On the ISO, rightclick SETUP and put it on window 95. THEN install, don't use space bars on the new location ( C:\GAMES\BEASTS for example )
Then open it from THAT location. Mount thru any mount prog the ISO.
When playing from the mounted CD you can't save. If you play from the root on the HD you can :-)
ps; anyone help with the lag?
ESG 2020-06-09 2 points
I have it all running in Windows 95 compatibility as described, but it asks for the CD ... Any way to solve this?
MiTT 2020-04-14 0 point
So basically i've got everything working but i can't get the lagg to go away. However using DxWnd does help but it makes the game go 1000x faster. When limiting the fps etc it lags again whenever i move the cursor. Can anyone help me with this?
Babs 2020-03-22 0 point
I cant't save my games. Does anyone know how to save when i take a break playing beast and bumpkins? I love it that I found the game. Good old memory's.
Holyshark 2020-01-17 -1 point
I am really happy to finaly find this playable version of B&B !!!
Only that laggy gameplay :( :( :(
saci 2019-12-10 0 point
People this game is some thing, it is the game of the games, i miss it so much trying to play it again for a long time
I LOVE TO PLAY IT IS NOT GOOD LOOKING, BUT SO MUCH FUN PLAYING IT
HAVE A NICE GAME EVERYONE
Kbstar 2019-06-30 1 point
got this game working based on previous comments. but now when i load the game in windows 95 compatibility i just get a black screen. tried reinstalling and remounting. change to resolution right down. but still a black screen. any ideas?
Dorpse 2019-05-21 1 point
To fix the maptitle error do the following. Mount the ISO and locate SETUP.EXE on the mounted CD. Set the compatability to Windows 95. Now run the SETUP.EXE so it will install the game. After installing the game go this new folder and locate BEASTS.EXE. Set the compatability to Windows 95 and run the game. The game will work now.
Jelly Cat 2018-12-16 3 points
I solved the maptitle problem - I have set Win 95 compability for autorun.exe too! But those lags! :( Is there anyone who solve game speed problem?
Jelly Cat 2018-12-16 -1 point
Hello! Can you please help me to solve the maptitle problem? I run setup.exe and beast.exe with Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows XP compability, but I still have an error :( Maybe there is another way to fix this problem? I love Beasts & Bumpkins and want to play it again so much :)
keepie 2018-10-20 0 point
Played this game for hours as a kid. Really wanna play it again. But how to solve the maptile problem?
Antagrorl 2018-04-17 0 point
I menage to turn game on but my problem is laggy gamepla, I've tried to play it in VirtualBox with w95 but game dost turn on does any one have this problem ?
@Vigon did you try to put windows95 compability on setup file ? And after on .exe ?
On my w10x64 turn on without any problems
VIGON 2018-04-10 0 point
I´m having problems to run this game (I use windows 10, btw).
Downloaded it, mirrowed through Virtual Clonedrive, solved the maptile problem, but when the game load, before the initial screen is visible, the whole PC stops responding and all I can do is press the windows button (and eventually reset the PC, since nothing else works).
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