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Adding Command Line Parameters to Video Game Shortcuts

How to add various parameters to video games using the game's shortcut.


What is a Command Line Parameter

A command line parameter in a video game shortcut is simply a command that enables or disables certain features of the game while the program begins. The most common command line parameter is -console. On many PC video games this will enable the console, where cheats are entered.

How to Add a Command Line Parameter to a Shortcut

The easiest way to enable cheats in a video game is to add a command line parameter to the video game's shortcut icon on your desktop. If there is no icon for the game on your desktop you can also add the parameter to another 'link' to the game, such as within the game's folder.

Here is how you add a command line parameter to a video game's shortcut icon on your PC desktop:

  • Locate the shortcut to the video game on your desktop.
  • Right click the file and select Properties.
  • Under the shortcut tab, you will see an area that says Target, this will list the exact location of the file within quotation marks.
  • Modify the Target adding the command line variables after the last quotation mark.
  • Press apply and start your game via the shortcut.

Example Shortcuts

Here is an example of a shortcut target with and without a command line parameter added to it:

Shortcut for Half-Life without a command line parameter:

    "C:\Program Files\Sierra\Half-Life\hl.exe"

Shortcut for Half-Life with a command line parameter added to it:

    "C:\Program Files\Sierra\Half-Life\hl.exe" -console

If there is more than one command line parameter to be added, they are added in the same fashion one after another with a leading space. Like this:

    "C:\Program Files\Sierra\Half-Life\hl.exe" -console -dev -debug

A more advanced method of beginning a game with command line parameters is to begin the game via the command prompt. However, this method is more difficult to do, and the process must be done each time the game is started. So for all intents and purposes, there would be no reason to begin a game this way, unless otherwise noted on the cheat page. Here is the process:

Go to Start > All Programs > Accessories > Command Prompt

type in C:\Program Files\Sierra\Half-Life\hl.exe -console

Need More Help?

In video games that require more than a shortcut to be edited to enable cheats, the specific cheat page will provide additional information. And as usual you can check the forums or email me for more help.

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