First of all, I would like to say that Ghost Master is one of my favourite games of all time, especially that it was translated into Polish, my native language and the translation pretty much beat the original in every possible way
Anyway, since I wanted to play the game immediately, without having to look for my original DVD, I obtained an English copy from GOG.com (free wallpapers, OST and concept art have always been very convincing ).
Unfortunately, after installing the game it turned out I get around 7-12 FPS in the menus and the game itself, which came as to me as quite a shock since my PC specs are as follows:
System: Windows 7 (64 bit), Service Pack 3 Processor: IntelCore i5 2500 K GPU: ASUS GTX 560 DirectCU II TOP (925 MHz/4200 MHz) 1GB Memory: Corsair Vengeance 1866Mhz, 8 GB RAM
I have tried installing my older GPU drivers (v. 110,90 instead of 314 something), which, after restarting the PC, solved my issues and the game seemed to work flawlessly...until I shut down my computer, which pretty much brought back the problem
I have already tested both my GOG.com as well as the original DVD on two different computers (PC with XP OS and a Laptop with Windows 7 (32) OS) and it worked buttery smooth in both cases...
Any ideas what I could do to be able to play my favourite game again?
Issues like this are really hard to fix when you can't actually sit down at the machine and play with it. Most anything I can offer will be little better than blind guesses, but even a blind woman can hit a bullseye every now and again, eh?
By what you've posted above, my initial guess would be that the key issue lies somewhere between newer versions of Direct X (they no longer support the entire functionality of 9.X and below as of version 10+) and the 64 bit OS.
I myself have held off on moving to a 64 bit platform for this exact reason. While I know this limits the amount of RAM my system can address, there's a huge list of legacy software (mostly older games) that just hate the 64 bit architecture and are either a real pain or downright impossible to get running smoothly.
Now one of the reasons I bring DX into this is because of the little oddity where it seemed to work after rolling back your video driver until another reboot. Knowing a little something about how video drivers and windows works, I'm wondering if the driver might have been using older Direct X libraries (which the game liked), which were subsequently nuked by windows on your next startup.
I know for a fact that windows loves to "take a look around" and restore files it thinks need to be a certain way since at least XP, and this sort of "computer knows better than the user" behavior is only getting worse and worse.
Anyone who doesn't believe me (and knows what the hell they're doing please) try locating and deleting say "notepad.exe" from your windows system folder on XP or above. There are ways to get rid of (or more to the point, replace) it, but it's not so simple. The OS will just keep putting it back, even without a restart.
Anyhoo... I'm babbling. =/
I'm not sure if this is in fact the issue you're experiencing, but given what I know so far, it's not a bad guess.
As far as what to do... well, there's a few things we can try. For starters, the one I would recommend would be to run a VM of an older windows and try running the game from there.
The reason I'd try this first is that doing so won't "roll back" your actual drivers or OS in any way, which means it can keep doing everything else like the shiny new toy it is rather than "gimping" it elsewhere just to make it happy with one older game.
Now the Virtual Machine used to offer you the ability to go all the way back to windows 95, but that's gotten rather hard to do now. What's still pretty easy though is to run XP or Vista in a virtual environment on a windows 7 system, which may just solve your problem.
If that doesn't work, the next idea I'd offer would be to begin playing around with the settings both in the game files and your windows display mode for resolution and color depth among some other odds and ends...
Failing that, things start to get more complicated, so let's take these one at a time and see if we get lucky on the easy ones. =)
Meow.... er, I mean... BOO! Yeah.. that must be it. >^,,^<
Um, believe it or not but I have completely resolved the issue. I do know exactly how it happened but I have no idea why it worked...
I eventually went back to my latest GPU drivers but of course nothing happened. Then I did play with screen resolution and while doing it I opened my PC's basic GPU settings (I believe that were Properties of My Computer) where I noticed a small checkbox saying "Enable ASUS OSD". It was checked so I unckecked it. When I saved the changes, the screen got somewhat a bit sharper, and when I run Ghost Master, the game simply sky-rocketed. The graphics were much sharper and I could add some extra filtering in my Nvidia Settings. Everything works buttery smooth now with a custom resolution of 1680x1050 (altering SpDrv.cfg) and I am finally able to try mods like All Ghosts etc
I checked the box again and the game was crappy slow again. I disable it, and it was smooth again. As I said, I do not know why it worked but it worked
An OSD usually stands for some sort of On Screen Display, which in these cases usually means some sort of small control panel or status box. Best logic I can come up with as to why disabling it made things happy is that possibly having it enabled was preventing the PC from using certain display modes, but without really playing around with it and seeing what's going on, that's just a shot in the dark.
Glad it's behaving now in any case though, and it gives us one more easy fix to suggest in the future, so I call it a win.
Meow.... er, I mean... BOO! Yeah.. that must be it. >^,,^<