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

Running a game in compatibility mode on Windows 11 is a straightforward process that can help you play older games that might not run properly on the latest operating system. By tweaking the compatibility settings, you can simulate an older version of Windows, making the game more likely to run without issues. Here’s a quick guide on how to do it.

How to Run a Game in Compatibility Mode Windows 11

This section will walk you through the steps to run a game in compatibility mode on Windows 11. By following these steps, you can configure your game to operate as if it were running on an older version of Windows, potentially resolving any issues with compatibility.

Step 1: Locate the Game’s Executable File

First, find the game’s executable (.exe) file.

This is usually located in the folder where you installed the game. If you’re unsure where that is, a quick way to find it is to right-click on the game’s shortcut and select "Open file location."

Step 2: Right-Click the Executable File

Right-click the executable file to open a context menu.

From this menu, you’ll have several options. You’re going to look for the one that says "Properties" at the bottom of the list to get into the settings for the file.

Step 3: Open the Properties Menu

Click on "Properties" to open a new window.

In the Properties window, you’ll see several tabs at the top. The one we’re interested in is called "Compatibility."

Step 4: Navigate to the Compatibility Tab

Select the "Compatibility" tab to open compatibility settings.

Here, you’ll see a section that says, "Compatibility mode." This is where the magic happens. You’ll be able to choose which version of Windows you want to simulate.

Step 5: Enable Compatibility Mode

Check the box that says "Run this program in compatibility mode for."

After checking the box, a dropdown menu will become active. From here, you can select the version of Windows you think will work best with your game. Common choices are Windows XP, Windows 7, or Windows 8.

Step 6: Apply the Settings

Click "Apply" to save your changes, then click "OK."

Now, the game will attempt to run in the mode you’ve selected. You can double-click the executable file to test it out.

After following these steps, your game should run more smoothly if compatibility issues were the problem. If the game still doesn’t work correctly, you may need to try a different compatibility mode or look into other troubleshooting options.

Tips for Running a Game in Compatibility Mode Windows 11

  • Experiment with Different Modes: If one version of Windows doesn’t work, try another. Sometimes, older games run better on different versions.
  • Use Administrative Privileges: Running the game as an administrator can sometimes resolve issues. Right-click the .exe file and select "Run as administrator."
  • Check for Updates: Sometimes, game developers release patches to fix compatibility issues. Always check for the latest updates.
  • Disable Fullscreen Optimization: This setting can sometimes cause issues. In the Compatibility tab, check the box for "Disable fullscreen optimizations."
  • Use Reduced Color Mode: Some older games work better in a limited color palette. You can enable this in the Compatibility tab as well.

FAQs about Running a Game in Compatibility Mode Windows 11

Can I use compatibility mode for any program?

Yes, compatibility mode can be used for any program, not just games. However, it’s most commonly used for older software that doesn’t run properly on newer operating systems.

What if compatibility mode doesn’t work?

If compatibility mode doesn’t resolve the issue, you might need to try other troubleshooting methods, such as updating drivers or checking for patches from the game developer.

Does using compatibility mode affect performance?

It can, but usually only slightly. The game may run a bit slower, but it’s a worthwhile trade-off if it means the game runs without crashing.

Can I revert the changes?

Absolutely! Just go back to the Compatibility tab in the Properties window and uncheck the compatibility mode box, then click "Apply" and "OK."

Is it safe to run games in compatibility mode?

Yes, it’s safe. Compatibility mode doesn’t change the actual game files; it just changes how Windows interacts with them.


  1. Locate the game’s executable file.
  2. Right-click the executable file.
  3. Open the Properties menu.
  4. Navigate to the Compatibility tab.
  5. Enable compatibility mode.
  6. Apply the settings.


Running a game in compatibility mode on Windows 11 can be a lifesaver for those who love older games. By following the simple steps outlined above, you can tweak your settings to make these games run smoothly on your modern system. Remember, if one compatibility mode doesn’t work, don’t give up. There are other versions to try, and often, a little experimentation can make all the difference.

Feel free to explore additional troubleshooting tips if you encounter issues, and always keep your system and games updated. Running games in compatibility mode isn’t just a one-size-fits-all solution, but with a bit of patience and tweaking, you can enjoy your favorite old games once again. Happy gaming!