How to Run a Game in Compatibility Mode Windows 11: Step-by-Step Guide

Running a game in compatibility mode on Windows 11 can help you play older games that may not work well with the latest operating system. To do this, right-click the game’s executable file, click on ‘Properties’, navigate to the ‘Compatibility’ tab, and choose an older version of Windows to run your game in.

Running a Game in Compatibility Mode Windows 11

To ensure that your older games run smoothly on Windows 11, follow these steps to enable compatibility mode. This will allow you to play games designed for earlier versions of Windows on your modern system.

Step 1: Right-click the Game’s Executable File

Find the game’s executable file (.exe file), right-click it, and select ‘Properties’.

This is where you start the process. The executable file is usually found in the folder where you installed the game. If you’re not sure where it is, you can often find it by right-clicking the game’s shortcut and selecting ‘Open file location’.

Step 2: Click on the ‘Properties’

Once you have the file menu open, click on ‘Properties’ at the bottom of the context menu.

Opening the Properties window gives you access to various settings. This is where you can tweak different options to help the game run better on your current system.

Step 3: Navigate to the ‘Compatibility’ Tab

Inside the Properties window, find and click on the ‘Compatibility’ tab.

The Compatibility tab is specifically designed to help older software run on newer versions of Windows. You’ll find several options here to tailor the game’s settings.

Step 4: Check the Box Next to ‘Run this program in compatibility mode for:’

Check the box that says ‘Run this program in compatibility mode for:’ and then select a previous version of Windows from the drop-down menu.

Selecting a previous version of Windows like Windows 7, 8, or even XP, can make a huge difference in game performance. This setting tells Windows 11 to emulate an older OS environment for the game.

Step 5: Apply and Save the Settings

Click ‘Apply’ and then ‘OK’ to save your settings.

After applying the settings, your game should now run in the compatibility mode you selected. This often fixes issues related to older games and new operating systems.

Once you’ve completed these steps, your game will attempt to run as if it’s on an older version of Windows. This can resolve many compatibility issues and make the game playable again.

Tips for Running a Game in Compatibility Mode Windows 11

  • Try Different Versions: Sometimes, one older version may work better than another. If the game doesn’t run with Windows 7 compatibility, try Windows XP or another version.
  • Run as Administrator: Check the ‘Run this program as an administrator’ box under the Compatibility tab.
  • Update Drivers: Make sure your graphics and other drivers are up-to-date. This can also help with compatibility.
  • Check Game Forums: Look for game-specific advice. Others who have faced similar issues might have solutions.
  • Use Virtual Machines: If all else fails, consider using a virtual machine with an older OS installed.

Frequently Asked Questions About Running a Game in Compatibility Mode Windows 11

Why won’t my game start even after setting compatibility mode?

Sometimes, compatibility mode alone isn’t enough. Check if the game requires other software like DirectX or older versions of .NET Framework to run.

Can I harm my computer by running in compatibility mode?

No, running a game in compatibility mode is generally safe and won’t harm your computer. It only changes how Windows handles the game.

What if my game still doesn’t work?

Try additional settings on the Compatibility tab or look for patches and updates from the game’s developer. You might also try using a virtual machine.

Can I use compatibility mode for other software?

Absolutely! Compatibility mode works for any older software, not just games.

Does compatibility mode affect game performance?

It might. Some older games could run slower, but it’s usually a small trade-off for getting the game to run at all.


  1. Right-click the game’s executable file.
  2. Click on ‘Properties’.
  3. Navigate to the ‘Compatibility’ tab.
  4. Check ‘Run this program in compatibility mode for:’ and select a version.
  5. Apply and save the settings.


Running a game in compatibility mode on Windows 11 can breathe new life into older games that you thought were unplayable. By following the simple steps outlined above, you can adjust your system settings to emulate an older Windows environment. This process is relatively straightforward and can make a significant difference in your gaming experience.

It’s always worth trying different compatibility settings if the first one you choose doesn’t work. Also, don’t forget to explore additional tips like running the game as an administrator or updating your drivers. If you run into issues, game forums and communities can be an invaluable resource.

In summary, Windows 11 has built-in tools to help you enjoy older games. By understanding how to leverage compatibility mode, you can continue to relish your favorite classics. So go ahead, dive into your game collection, and see what forgotten treasures you can bring back to life!

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