I'm using Wine to play City of Heroes and while overall it works pretty well, there are a few quirks I'm hoping to find fixes for. The biggest of these is that it seems that either Wine or the COH executable itself isn't correctly recognizing the video driver and therefore isn't making good use of the available features. Here's what I have:

Intel Core 2 Quad 6600 processor
Ubuntu Intrepid-Ibex (kernel version 2.6.27-11)
NVIDIA GeForce 8500 GT (512 MB)
--NVIDIA Driver 180.29 (downloaded and installed directly from NVIDIA)

If I run the CityOfHeroes.exe directly and capture the output, the first few lines show some interesting omissions.

Running City of Heroes
Preloading DLLs... done.                                               (0.02)
SVN Revision: 52259
CityOfHeroes client count: 1
num cpus = 4 / 4
Loading message stores... done.                                        (1.12)
Disabling multi-threaded rendering because ATI drivers are older than 6.6
project coh
Driver is old because NVIDIA version < 5216
CPU: 2400 Mhz / Memory: 2022 MBs / Video Card: Unknown / Driver Version: UnknownVendor / Available Memory: 1819 MBs / OS Version: 5.1.2600 / Video Memory: Unknown
Render settings: VBOS 1
Render path: NV1X NV2X ARBVP
The number of cpus is good, but why would the multi-threaded rendering have anything to do with ATI drivers? Especially since I'm not using an ATI graphics card? I have to think I'd get better performance if it were able to make use of the multi-threading capability of the CPU. Not that performance is bad, but who knows what it could be doing!

Next, I don't know where it's getting the NVIDIA version number. Or perhaps it's not getting it at all (which would certainly be less than 5216). Does anyone know what version number it should be getting for the 180.29 driver? How do I get wine to report this number accurately?

Finally, it doesn't look like it even recognizes the video card as NVIDIA at all. I have to assume that is something in the interaction of wine and the nvidia driver, and perhaps OpenGL as well.

I'm hoping that resolving these will solve some of the crashes that can occur when certain parts of the game (such as the costume selector) try to make use of specific NVIDIA features (pbuffer). There is a workaround that involve setting a wine registry key of HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Wine\OpenGL\DisabledExt ensions to a string value with "GL_NV_register_combiners". It prevents the crash, but the graphics really suck with that set. (Yes, "suck" is a precise term.) I'm sure there's a better solution, but I'm not having any luck finding it on my own.

I appreciate any (constructive) suggestions that could clear some of this up! Thanks in advance for the help!