Sphinx and The Cursed Mummy is an original 3rd person action-adventure inspired by the mythology of ancient Egypt. Travelling the world via magical portals to foil the evil plans of Set. Sphinx's Journey will require all his wits, agility, and special powers.
All Reviews:
Very Positive (125) - 92% of the 125 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Nov 10, 2003

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Recent updates View all (8)

June 28

Now with mouse-controlled blowpipe, restored Abydos Museum/character HD textures and more stuff

Yesterday we added the much requested mouse-controlled blowpipe controls, this is the first step towards having full-featured mouse and keyboard mapping support in EngineX.

Now that most of the groundwork is in place it should not take long. We still need to add extra sub-menus and configurable options; ensuring that everything runs as expected will probably take most of the remaining work.

In other news, we also added several high-quality textures for the Abydos Museum and brought back some original (really high resolution) character textures for Sphinx and the mummy that will be tweaked in future updates to better match their final look. We also improved the draw distance for various Abydos NPCs like the ones in the main plaza, as requested.

Today's update also brought many other fixes and improvements; we brought back the iconic thunder sound that sounds when you first enter the main menu, we made the back/cancel labels clickable, fixed a bunch of long-standing collision issues, skipping cutscenes now works even if the dialog is in wait state, brought back or implemented some beta/modding features needed by the beta map restoration project, and little tweaks everywhere.

Also, here is the complete cumulative changelog since our last announcement:

2018-06-28 (Thursday)
  • Made the fan-favorite intro logo thunderous again. The sound was broken on release due to a little hashcode header mismatch.
  • Add initial support for the mouse-controlled camera that we have been teasing for a while, we still need to add a mouse sensitivity control. The player can shoot with the left mouse button and exit first-person mode via right-click. The groundwork for keyboard action mapping is laid out and it will probably come after this.
  • Save the vertical sync changes to Sphinx.ini, fixes disabling v-sync in the in-game options.
  • Prefix the screen name with a number in the graphics options, useful to distinguish them in case there are two or more screens with the same name.
  • Add support for clicking the "(B) Back" labels in the pause and main menus, now the user can go back and cancel via mouse.

  • Carefully hex-edit the level data to improve draw distances of NPCs and triggers in the Abydos Canals. Now characters like the the boat owner, the Mad Boy/Juggler and the giggling lady in the Main Plaza can be seen from afar.
  • Add several much needed HQ textures for the Abydos Museum, refurbish some wall textures to add some lost detail. Make some signs and canopies partially transparent via alpha-testing/alpha-to-coverage.
  • Remove the squarish/invisible roadblocks in the middle of the ramp in the Great Wall Entrance II Room, the collision meshes of the wooden pillars poked through the ramp they support. This is a long standing bug still present in all the original console versions.
  • Fix the hanging flags collision in the sneak corridor of the Castle of Uruk during the second mummy visit. Now the mummy doesn't get stuck and can walk and sneak under them, hopefully without introducing some extra regressions.

  • If we skipped a cutscene with the inventory key and the dialog/help window was in a pause point waiting for user input we would get stuck in the fade-to-black transition after skipping it, and we would also need to press 'accept' to return to normal gameplay. Fix that so that pressing the inventory/skip button suffices.
  • Reimplement some beta features and mechanics asked by modders:
    • Add support for the PushFlag_AmunRa flag in the XTrigger_Pickupable and XTrigger_Pushable triggers; it was halfplemented. Set the needed strength to 2 if we have the Hands of Amun + Hands of Amun Ra or 1 of each. Previously it only counted the amount of HT_Item_Ability_HandsOfAmun, and there was no reference to HT_Item_Ability_HandsOfAmunRa.
    • Whitelist HT_Item_Pickup_FireDart for pickup creation, which is also used while dropping items randomly in breakable containers. Also, add support for dropping fire darts on intelligent item generation.
      • Now when ContainerFlag_SpawnPickup is checked in EuroLand the FireDart flag can generate an item in either random or intelligent mode. The behavior in the final game shouldn't change because this item isn't flagged in any container, only in beta maps.
  • Fix the slightly offset highlight tab in the Notes section of the Book of Sphinx; the currently selected objective/entry text overflowed a bit.
  • Update the copyright year of the boot-up/legal screen from the initial 2017 to 2018.
  • Use the HQ selection tab texture for the Book of Sphinx again, it regressed after the latest changes.
  • Losslessly compress all of the HQ texture replacements, reducing their disk footprint and halving loading times.
  • Reduce HQ texture replacement micro-stutter during gameplay.
  • Add some framebuffer discard optimizations on MSAA resolve.

2018-05-28 (Monday)
  • Add the initial version of the HQ Sphinx/Mummy character texture replacements, they were sourced from the highest pre-rendered 3ds Max models available and they don't exactly match their final counterparts, so it will require some texture tweaking and recoloring work, but this is good enough for now; the amount of extra detail is beautiful.
  • Add several new HQ texture replacements covering mainly Heliopolis Dungeon, Uruk Intro, Uruk Islands and Anubis Wall.
  • Uncomment the unpossession code so that we can still play the old Sakkara maps with the Dino Oafs and Shell Critters, it should also fix the contextual buttons not changing after possessing the same monster a second time. See ContextActions.xls for HT_Trig_Context_CancelPossession / HT_Trig_Context_DinoOaf / HT_Trig_Context_Frog.
  • Get rid of the possession dart first-person fire action context when arriving at a Sakkara unpossession point by resetting the Sphinx action context to the default one, the HUD and buttons looked pretty buggy.
  • Raise the large data heap again a bit (to 40 MiB, same as in Xbox) from the original 22 MiB in PC. Fixes OOM crash in the second part of the _sk_02.edb mod, right after the submap load due to big map sizes.
  • Add an extra xxHash for the propPusheableBull texture (from _mu_eye), add a HQ texture for the triple mummy saw trap in that very same map, it was pretty low res.
  • Fix the "/lib32/libc.so.6: version `GLIBC_2.7' not found" error on older Linux distros. This is caused by the GLIBC update, which made Sphinx.elf use powf@@GLIBC_2.2.5. Replace it by the perfectly functional powf@GLIBC_2.0 and use manual Linux glibc versioning selection based on this: https://github.com/wheybags/glibc_version_header
  • Tell the Linux linker to use both hash styles ("sysv" a "gnu") for compatibility. Set the OpenGL library to LEGACY to keep using libgl instead of libglvnd.

Thanks for reading!
12 comments Read more

May 23

Now with improved, and mostly original, HD textures

During the past few months we have been recovering and tweaking more than ~130 environmental textures from original sources, and now we are transplanting them back into the game 15 years later. Many scenes and props now look crisp and more detailed than their sixth-generation, compressed counterparts.

The Eurocom and Anibyte artists originally painted their images at bigger sizes, but due to serious console and memory limitations at the time they had to be downsized and compressed to Heliopolis and back.

These upgrades mostly cover common gameplay elements; like buttons, statues and levers and, more specifically, Heliopolis Exterior, Anubis Wall, Abydos Canals and the Uruk Intro. We will probably keep adding more original assets in zones that still need some care, like the Lost Temple, some Mummy dungeons and Luxor.

Modern computers are much more capable than a PlayStation® 2 or GameCube™. Enjoy playing Sphinx as it was originally meant to be seen, it holds up pretty well.

Also, here is the complete cumulative changelog since our last announcement:

2018-01-30 (Tuesday)
  • German translation improvements by @MagicianMana.
  • Make the health Gold Ankh UI indicators scalable by the TextHudObjScaling key in the [Graphics] section of Sphinx.ini, too. As requested by @DaxterSpeed.
  • Add a texture override (hudRotatorSelect.png) for the golden highlight frame around the currently selected item in the pop-up rotator of the HUD. This one has higher resolution and it doesn't look half as stretched as the original one, specially after making that list wider a few weeks ago.
  • Disable the EGXGL_ATTRIB_DIVISOR_INSTANCING / glVertexAttribDivisor hack, it didn't seem to help. It was disabled by default; let it autodetect, as intended: http://steamcommunity.com/app/606710/discussions/0/1621726179559230606/
  • Disable glObjectLabel'ing again to improve performance.
  • Update the Windows version of the SDL2 (to 2.0.7) and OpenAL Soft (to 1.18.2) libraries. Don't link/import the SDL2 library symbols by ordinal anymore; do it by name, because it breaks dragging and dropping new SDL2.dll versions that don't share export order.
  • Let the user choose if she wants to bound/restrict/confine the mouse cursor within the window borders through a new InputGrabbed key in the [RenderMode] section of Sphinx.ini. It is set to 1/TRUE by default. Suggested by @DaxterSpeed.
    [RenderMode] InputGrabbed=0
  • Make the left analog stick WASD keyboard button support remappable for people that use AZERTY/QUERTZ. It can be done through new configuration keys in Sphinx.ini. For example, this is is the correct mapping for French AZERTY layouts, where WASD is ZQSD:
    Suggested by @Alice Madieus: http://steamcommunity.com/app/606710/discussions/0/1693785669872263827/
  • Some chests could be opened multiple times on cutscene skips. Don't let people exploit it: https://twitter.com/owashii/status/952217023567802369
  • Skipping the Heliopolis boulder cutscene after burning the wooden platform soft-locked the controls. Make it unskippable.

2018-03-09 (Friday)
  • Improve the safe zone for 4:3 screens, some of the text in menus and HUD spilled over at either side. See this Steam forum discussion: http://steamcommunity.com/app/606710/discussions/0/1700542332338620293/
  • Update to the latest SDL2 version in both Windows and macOS. We now use 2.0.8, which comes with a bunch of fixes and improvements.
  • Compile and update the macOS version of OpenAL Soft to 1.18.2, we were using 1.18.1 until now; bundle the HRTF coefficients in the .dylib.
  • Conditionally enable the frame-stepping code when a
    [Debug] AllowGamePause=1
    key appears in Sphinx.ini. Replace the forwards/backwards mouse buttons by the Scroll Lock/Pause keys.

    Enable this mode by keeping pressed one of the buttons until you press the other once. The game will stop, gameplay-wise. You can then either press Scroll Lock to make it go really slow or just advance one frame each time you press Pause. To disable just do the same press-one-while-keeping-the-other-pressed trick again.
  • For some reason the dynamic lights didn't use the alpha modulation term that was enabled for things like the fireflies (i.e. TR_SmallLight trigger) so they appear and go off suddenly in a pretty jarring fashion, fix those fade-ins and outs ~15 years later. Buttery smooth.
  • Simplify the sound streaming code in the OpenAL back-end, this is used for music and ambient sounds.
  • Enable a bunch of important debug traces in the retail build.
  • Get rid of the jarring one-frame flicker in the light that appears while diving fast. This is more of a workaround than a real fix, but it's simple and will do the trick for now.
  • Add support for the GL_NV_fill_rectangle extension, that should improve drawing 2D text and all the other screen-aligned rectangular sprites. It uses the polygon's bounding box during rasterization, simplifying the computations and making them faster, at least in theory.
  • Enable the subnormal number flush-to-zero mode at start-up to make floating point operations faster on supported hardware by trading some precision.
  • Also, workaround the crash on file selection in the EngineX Viewer (EXGeoViewer).
  • Make the HUD toggle option in the development Watcher dialog actually work. This should have been implemented in 2003. Now the optional
    [WatcherItems] Display-Hud=0
    Sphinx.ini key can be used to take superior screenshots.
  • Improve the SDL2 event loop handling for snappier response times.
  • Improve the SDL2 gamepad back-end performance and its hot-plugging support. There are still some underlying issues in the SDL2/Xinput library that prevent the Steam Controller from hot-plugging while using it wirelessly on Windows, an easy workaround is to connect it via USB cable or plug a different wired controller after pairing so that both are detected.
  • Also, stop the rumbling altogether when we switch to mouse/keyboard mode.
  • Set the TextHudObjScaling variable to 1.3, unless overridden in Sphinx.ini. Making UI text slightly larger by default.
  • Minor cleanups.

2018-03-28 (Wednesday)
  • Implement a `-dev` mode, make it so that most of the debug/development EngineX windows, such as the level or cutscene selector or the right-click menu, can be enabled using `-dev` as command-line parameter in the retail build.
    • This also enables cheats and disables achievements.
    • Additionally, players can enable no-clip (you can toggle it by clicking the right analog stick and going up/down with Y/A or Triangle/Cross) through a new Sphinx.ini key:
      [Debug] ScanMode=1
  • Add high-resolution replacements for a bunch of commonly used low-res textures of scene props, mainly in Abydos and Heliopolis. More to come.
  • Add some additional high-definition Abydos texture replacements sourced for the original artwork.
  • Expose soft particles as a selectable item in the graphics menu, now that the UI fire effect regression is fixed. Kudos to @YouTube.GTuxTV for the original report.
  • Fix the GPU freezes/stalls under Mesa/Intel/Nouveau/Linux, turns out I had forgotten to initialize the `i` counter variable in the `for` loop of the dynamic lights and that caused infinite loops in the default pixel shader, where as in the proprietary drivers it was just seemingly initialized to zero by default; working fine.
  • Improve the drawing distance of the Anubis Wall entrance in the Heliopolis exterior, bringing the fade-out range farther apart. Now the interior is visible from the Cursed Palace and beyond, no more 2D cardboard portal.
  • Let the player modulate the camera rotation amount by some predefined constant through Sphinx.ini. @animalmagic found the camera rotation too fast.
    [PCKeyboardMap] CameraSpeedMultiplierX=0.7 CameraSpeedMultiplierY=1.0
  • Add mipmapping support for the HD replacement textures, now that we are replacing 3D-mapped objects it was pretty ugly from afar.
  • Sanitize the OpenAL sound streaming code a bit better, should mitigate the rare bug where music stops working after a few hours of uninterrupted gameplay.
  • Optimize the depth renderbuffer texture transfer format by using the proper type, it should improve transfer performance by avoiding possible conversions. It can't hurt.
  • Fix a segmentation fault caused by improper use of variable arguments in Linux and macOS.
  • Update the gamecontrollerdb.txt mappings file from the unofficial community list (https://github.com/gabomdq/SDL_GameControllerDB), adding out-of-the-box support for many gamepads.

2018-04-03 (Tuesday)
  • Fix the user-after-free pointer dereference monster thaw crash for good. There was a tricky bug in all the previous Sphinx versions that caused a crash when trying to push the block of a big monster (frozen with ice darts) just when it starts to thaw out.
    • This only happened when freezing monsters like Skeletal Spiders or Wasp Spiders, instead of the smaller Fire Armadillos; which are carried around.
  • Add animated HD texture replacements for the water surface layers in Abydos Canals/Council/Heliopolis Exterior.
  • Add matching xxHash codes so that the Abydos Council Chambers map makes use of the already existing HD textures added in the 2018-03-28 update.
  • Expand the portal fade-out distance of the Osiris shield room entrance (the one with the spikes), improving its drawing distance.
    • This 2D impostor and the one in the Anubis Wall entrance were the more noticeable ones.
  • Let modders use additional music hashcodes instead of hardcoding the list of jumpcodes, let's be more lenient here on PC.
    • Just ensure that the jump code is within the valid range and call it a day.
    • Now people should be able to add extra music tracks if needed once proper tooling is in place. New ambient sounds should already be possible, no hardcoding there.
  • Remove a bunch of additional precompiled beta maps included the release day that don't work in the normal game. Now that the Authoring Tools are public proper levels can be exported by prospective players using EuroLand, most of those will actually work.

2018-04-08 (Sunday)
  • Add a savestate-ish player position save/restore functionality useful for speedrunning practice. Save position with LT + RT + Left analog click / Page up, restore with Left analog click / Page Down. You need to use -dev mode and have [Debug] ScanMode=1 in Sphinx.ini for it to work. Dedicated to speedrunners like Remi and turothking.
  • Optimize several HD texture replacements.

2018-04-12 (Thursday)
  • Export a series of useful static global variables using a signature/marker that third-party software like LiveSplit can read across versions, this avoids having to hardcode addresses. Should open the door to third-party auto-splitters for speedruns.
  • Expose the game status in the gExportedBlock so that third party tools can know if we are in a loading screen or waiting for an async submap (black screen with the spinning Ankh icon).

2018-04-26 (Thursday)
  • Use GPU-persistent buffers for streamed vertex data (skinned meshes/cloth physics) when possible. This requires at least OpenGL 4.3 + ARB_buffer_storage.
  • Extend the Game Over background screen to also cover the entire left side in widescreen and ultrawidescreen monitors.
  • Completed the German and French translation of the remaining Steam achievements. Thanks to @LetsPlayNintendo, @Remidemmi (DE), and @SenseiTional (FR).
  • Changed the localized versions of some achievement names to match with their original in-game names.
  • Enable alpha blending in the alpha-tested textures of the Book of Sphinx. Fix the Book of Sphinx info box misalignment when the Artifacts tab is selected, the position is exactly the same when in the Monsters or Note pages, but it moves a little when switching to Artifacts.
  • Also, add a non-pixelated Book of Sphinx background, the original looked pretty stretched.
  • Change the gamepad button bindings in -dev mode to save player position with LT + Left analog click / Page up, and restore it with RT + Left analog click / Page down. No more clicking by mistake.
  • First batch of HQ texture replacements.

2018-04-30 (Monday)
  • Additional preventive checks against rare teleport-based softlocks.
  • Fix the animated HQ water texture tiling issues. Repainted the seams of the 72 texture frames, now they aren't noticeable anymore.
  • Improve the papyrus background image.

2018-05-23 (Wednesday)
  • Add a massive amount of HQ texture replacements sourced from the original artwork, mixed with tweaked versions of the texture pack. Covering mainly Uruk Intro, Uruk Islands, Abydos Canals, Heliopolis, Dark Area, Uruk exteriors, Cursed Palace surroundings and the Anubis Wall itself.
  • Flip the conditions in the ISSAID command to hopefully try to fix some rare softlocks when a gamescript is waiting for ISSAID after LOCKCONTROLS + PRINTMESSAGE and then some other trigger overlaps in time and also does LOCKCONTROLS 1 + PRINTMESSAGE while we are waiting, causing the first trigger to never return from ISSAID and unlock the controls with the tailing LOCKCONTROLS 0, leaving the player stuck. This can happen in the crawlspace of the Luxor throne room, if the crawl help text wasn't triggered by not moving the throne all the way and then we accidentally move it just when the old NPC called Sorkon talks to us when coming back.
  • Don't let the user set negative display indexes in Sphinx.ini, clamp it to {0, max-screen-index} range. Fixes displaying the resolution when [RenderMode] Display=-1.

Thanks for reading!
10 comments Read more

About This Game

Sphinx and The Cursed Mummy is an original 3rd person action-adventure inspired by the mythology of ancient Egypt. Travelling the world via magical portals to foil the evil plans of Set. Sphinx's Journey will require all his wits, agility, and special powers. He will also rely on his reluctant hero friend, The Mummy, to help when being inconspicuous is the only solution. By finding the stolen magical crowns of Egypt, Sphinx can stop Set and save the world.


  • Use Sphinx and his increasing array of skills to face deadly mythical monsters while avoiding perilous traps with acrobatic ease. Weaken enemies and use capture beetles to store and unleash their abilities at will.
  • Take control the Mummy when strength & combat skills aren't needed — use the Mummy's stealth and unconventional antics to avoid enemies, solve puzzles and sabotage right under the enemy's nose.
  • Interact with hundreds of unique and imaginative creatures, enemies and allies.
  • Fantastic graphics bring this mythical world based on Egyptian legends to life.
  • Totally immersive storyline and epic gameplay.

The Story:

An ancient Egyptian Universal Empire once joined several worlds through Solar Disc portals. The old empire was destroyed and the civilizations in each world have suffered different fates, some of them have continued contact and others have lost it. These worlds have been separated for such a long time that many of them would not recognize each other.

The legend says that two forces, one negative, one positive, are trying to recover the old empire and all of its crowns again. But we know very little about these forces or if they really exist. Other people are simply trying to understand what happened and the real nature of each world. Meanwhile each world continues with it’s own way and history.

Recently, strange things have been happening… News is received from many places that problems are appearing; the normally peaceful villages are now at war, odd monsters appear in valleys where there was once placid ecology... Nobody knows why…

The chain of communication between the worlds remains partially abandoned, partially destroyed and so unstable that to use it is a sure way to cause even more problems and dangers. A long time ago the Great Wall in Heliopolis was built to protect the civilians. Many people have used the portals but disappeared without trace. For this reason you never know how you will be received in any of the locations or if you will get anywhere at all.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows XP / Vista / 7 / 8 / 10 32 or 64 bit
    • Processor: Intel or AMD 1.5 GHz supporting SSE2 instructions
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0 Core Profile compatible like GeForce 8600
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: Windows XP / Vista / 7 / 8 / 10 32 or 64 bit
    • Processor: Intel or AMD 2 GHz supporting SSE2 instructions
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0 Core Profile compatible like GeForce 8800
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Having ARB_clip_control improves depth precision over large distances.
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard)
    • Processor: 1.5 GHz supporting SSE2 instructions
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.2 Core Profile compatible
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.12 (Sierra)
    • Processor: 2 GHz supporting SSE2 instructions
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.2 Core Profile compatible
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Having ARB_clip_control improves depth precision over large distances.
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, Steam OS, Arch Linux, Linux Kernel 2.6+ (i686 arch) / glibc 2.1.3+
    • Processor: 1.5 GHz supporting SSE2 instructions
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0 Core Profile compatible
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, Steam OS, Arch Linux, Linux Kernel 2.6+ (i686 arch) / glibc 2.1.3+
    • Processor: 2 GHz supporting SSE2 instructions
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0 Core Profile compatible
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: Having ARB_clip_control improves depth precision over large distances.

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