"Zoo Tycoon 2" saw release in 2004: A time before widescreen monitors were a regular purchase for most PC gamers. Thus, all of the default monitor settings in the game skew towards older 4:3 monitors. To run the game in a 1680x1050, or any widescreen, resolution, make sure you've downloaded the latest patches for the game. These patches unlock the widescreen resolution in the Options menu.
Launch "Zoo Tycoon 2" after downloading and installing the most recent patch (see Resources for a link to the patch).
Select "Game Options" from the main menu.
Open the "Display" tab and set the resolution to "1680 x 1050." The resolution will change, momentarily providing you with a blank screen: This is normal.
Click "OK" when the game image reappears. This confirms that the resolution displayed correctly on your monitor. If you don't click "OK," the game will revert back to the previous resolution.
Tips & Warnings
- The 1680 x 1050 option won't be available unless you have a monitor that is capable of displaying widescreen resolutions.
- Some machines will display "Zoo Tycoon 2" in widescreen, but will not save the resolution as default. To fix this, open the folder "C:\Documents and Settings\[Your Name]\Application Data\Microsoft Games\Zoo Tycoon 2\Default Profile" and right-click the file "options.xml." Choose "Open with" and click "Notepad." Change the "Width" and "Height" options in the first line to "1680" and "1050," then save and close the file.
- Only edit "options.xml" if you've successfully run "Zoo Tycoon 2" in 1680 x 1050 mode.
- "User Manual: Zoo Tycoon 2;" Blue Fang Games; 2004
- John Winter; Help Desk, Blue Fang Technical Support; Waltham, MA
- Photo Credit zoo image by danimages from Fotolia.com