I've been running Settlers 3 on my Win2k machine for quite a while now, and mostly it runs fine. I've gotten this error a few times, but until yesterday it has never been repeatable.
I'm on the last Roman mission in the original game. I've stockpiled about 200 weapons and have plenty of free carriers. I haven't invaded Tsu Tang yet, and my game is saved here. I turn the barracks back on (I turned it off while the upgrades were going) and begin the invasion. Not long in, the game suddenly crashes to the desktop and I get the following error message:
Structured Exception c0000005 occurred at ba0x005FCDFB. Read from 47ba43ee failed.
immediately followed by:
Microsoft Visual Basic Library:
Runtime Error! Program: C:Games\Settlers3\s3.exe
abnormal program termination
After this happens, I have to eject the CD and put it back in, otherwise the game won't recognize it.
Either the computer is sulking about getting stomped so badly, or something's going wrong. Maybe some part of the game is getting too complex? Help would be appreciated.
I remember having problems with changing work area when i played s3, if i moved it to far away game would shut down.
I've managed to narrow the problem down to a specific tower (or castle, can't tell) near the north-west corner of the map. Anytime the main part of the screen is directed there, or my soldiers attack (take?) the tower, the game crashes. Sounds like a corrupted save file.
I had noticed some VERY strange visual artifacts in this level - on the west edge of the map, there were cones of partial visibility, cone tip pointed up, in the unexplored areas of the map. Mostly they showed blue.
Oh, and one bit of information that I *really* should have put in the first post: I'm running version 1.60 of Settlers 3.
Ok, the solution to this one was obvious, and worked perfectly - restart the mission. No crashes, no odd behavior, and 200+ soldiers left AFTER the conquest.