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'1503 A.D.' - Demo Available NOW

by Thomas on Feb. 7, 2003 @ 6:07 a.m. PST

The approx. 165MB demo consists of four playable scenarios: the two introductory scenarios "Exploration and Colonization" and "Trade and Diplomacy" teach you the basics on how to erect and maintain a functional settlement and allow you to trade with the natives and a computer player. You can then use your new-found experience in the "Settlement" scenario, where you can erect a larger city and pursue both trade and research in order to elevate your "Pioneers" to "Settler" status... Read more for download links ...

Get the US Anno1503 demo off Worthplaying

USA Link <--> USA Link 2 <--> European Link

Get the Euro Anno1503 demo off Worthplaying

USA Link <--> European Link

Other Mirrors

Get the Anno1503 demo off Official Anno 1503 website

Get the Anno1503 demo off Gamershell

  • The Best of Both Worlds - All the intensity and action of the best real-time strategy games and the depth of the empire-building epics
  • Brilliant Graphics - Stunning environments bring the 16th century to life - over 350 authentic building types from churches to watch towers to tobacco plantations
  • The Superpowers of the 16th Century - From the stone streets of Europe to the steps of Asia to the jungles of South America, trade and war with nine different cultures, including Venetians, Mongolians, Aztecs and more
  • Brave the Elements - Settle in climates as diverse as frozen Tundra, bleak deserts, and heavily vegetated jungles, each with their own unique natural resources and indigenous life and each posing unique challenges
  • A World of Action - Experience unlimited action and take advantage of endless gameplay in Tutorial mode, Single Scenario mode, Campaign mode and Open-Ended mode
  • Wage War on Land or at Sea - Build your armies through up to 14 different military units and 26 military upgrades. Vary your tactics based on the terrain - command armies to storm city walls, or empower navies to create embargoes against neighbouring cities
  • Enhanced AI - Observe the differences in the cultures you encounter - some may look to establish trade and diplomatic ties while others may simply be out for blood. Different situations lead to different patterns of behaviour

This demo version only contains a small sample of the full version of Anno 1503! It offers the following:

- The "Discovery and Settlement" tutorial
- The "Trade and Diplomacy" tutorial
- A demo version of Continuous Play mode
- A demo version for the combat

You can buy the full version in many retail stores.


1) System requirements
2) Keyboard shortcuts
3) Starting the Game
4) Uninstall
5) DirectX
6) Technical FAQ
7) Ingame Help
8) First steps during settlement
9) Game-related FAQ
10) Website info
11) Legal

To see the latest changes and patches, please visit our website at:

1) System Requirements

Windows(tm) 98/2000/ME/XP
500 MHz Pentium II(tm) processor
128 MB RAM
254 MB or more free hard drive space
12x CD-ROM drive
16 MB DirectX 7(tm)-compatible 3D AGP video card
DirectX(tm) 8.1 or higher
DirectX(tm)-compatible sound card

2) Keyboard Shortcuts

ESC - Deactivate various cursor modes

F1 - Open help index
F2 - Zoom 3 (far)
F3 - Zoom 2
F4 - Zoom 1 (close)
F5 - Normal game speed
F6 - Double game speed
F7 - Quadruple game speed
F8 - Half game speed
F9 - Quick load (only works after F10 has been used once)
F10 - Quick save

Note: Anno 1503 also performs an autosave approximately every 10 minutes.

x - Rotate map right
y - Rotate map left
. - Rotate building right
, - Rotate object left
j - Jump to previous active object
Spacebar Jump to previous event
h - Cycle through your cities
w - Hoist/lower white flag (ship)
p Pause: on/off
Ctrl+w - Throw all cargo overboard
Ctrl+d - Open all gates of a city
Alt+d - Close all gates of a city

Ctrl+0-9 Save soldiers/ships as group
0-9 - Select saved groups of soldiers/ships
m Toggle coat of arms above soldiers
n - Screen jumps to next scout

o - Options menu
d - Diplomacy status menu
b - Construction menu
s - Ship list
c - City list
q View ratings list
Shift+h View high scores

3) Starting the game

If you use Windows 2000, install the game as a user with "Power User" privileges.
Users of Windows XP should have "Administrator" privileges.

Close down all other applications before launching the game.
We particularly advise against running Instant Messenger software while using Anno 1503
The drain on system resources may cause program errors or crashes.
If you take long breaks during gameplay, your operating system's screen saver may launch, depending on your settings. Normally, this should not cause problems.
However, if there are problems, change the display properties and turn off the screen saver, if necessary.
Do the same if there are any problems caused by your operating system's power saving settings.

4) DirectX

Anno 1503 supports DirectX 8.1. If DirectX 8.1 is not installed, you can download it here:
There may be problems, if DirectX 8.1. cannot find certain drivers for your system/hardware, or overwrites them.
If you have problems after installing or launching the game, for instance with the cursor being hard to move or jumpy, use the file "DXSETUP.EXE" to check whether your video card drivers were authenticated by DirectX. If the problems persist, contact your retailer or ensure that you have installed the latest drivers for your video card. You may find the latest drivers on the web sites of the video or sound card manufacturers.

5) Uninstall

To uninstall Anno 1503 Demo go to Programs/Anno 1503 Demo in the Start menu. Click on Uninstall Anno 1503 Demo to proceed. Alternatively, click on the Start menu, select Settings and then Control Panel. Now find Add/Remove Programs and click to run. Scroll down the list until you see Anno 1503 Demo, select it and click on Add/Remove to uninstall.

6) Technical FAQ

Q: The mouse cursor is invisible. What can I do?
A: Please install the latest drivers for your video card and your mouse, as well as the most current version of DirectX (8.1.).

7) Ingame help

An ingame help function is integrated into the game, and you can use it to find answers to game-related questions while you are in the game.
Click on the question mark icon on the bottom right of the screen to open the text window containing the alphabetically ordered help system index. Click on the respective index item to jump to the appropriate text.
You can also use the text field to search the index for topics and keywords.
There are links (marked blue) within the help texts that, like the images of production chains,
take you to additional texts if you click on them.

8) First steps during settlement

Follow these steps to build you first settlement on the first island:

1. Build a warehouse or main market building, depending on whether you want to start the settlement on the coast or in the interior of the island.
2. Unload the goods you brought along from your ship.
3. Construct streets, production chains and public buildings.
4. Construct market stands for selling goods.

1. Constructing a warehouse or main market building
If you want to start the settlement on the coast, construct a warehouse.
If you sail your ship close enough to an island, the "Build warehouse" icon becomes available in the right-hand menu. Click on this icon and construct the building by left-clicking on the coast.
You can also find the warehouse in the "Coastal buildings" section of the construction menu.

If you prefer to build in the interior of the island, use a scout to construct a main market building there. Follow this procedure:

a) Sail your ship close to the coast of the island.
b) Left-click on the ship in info mode and left-click the scout figure in the ship menu. The scout is now on the island.
c) Transfer wood and tools from the ship to the scout. Move him close to the ship and left-click on him, while the info mode is active. Click on the desired goods area in the "Load/unload scout" submenu to unload goods from the ship to the scout. Select the amount of goods to be unloaded per mouse click by using the various weight symbols (you do not have to transfer the entire amount of building materials). The bar in the goods area displays the current amount. Use the "Load goods" arrow to transfer goods to the scout.
d) Move the scout to the location where you want to construct the main market building.
Place the main market building by clicking on the "Build warehouse" icon. You can also find the main market building in the "Public buildings" section of the construction menu. Transfer goods from the scout to the main market building by clicking on the scout while the info mode is active and then moving the goods via the "Load/unload scout" submenu. Click on the appropriate goods fields, select the amount to be unloaded and use the "Unload goods" arrow.

2. Unloading a ship
Once you have constructed the warehouse, start transferring goods from the ship to the warehouse. Use the goods you brought along to construct the first buildings. Transfer the goods into your warehouse by clicking on your ship while the info mode is active and selecting the "Load/unload ship" submenu. Mark the field belonging to the product you want to unload, choose the amount to be unloaded, and use the "Unload goods" arrow to transfer the selected product into the warehouse.

When you place the mouse cursor over the goods area the amount in tons is displayed.
A bar in the goods area displays how much storage capacity is used by this product.
Note that the ship must be close to the warehouse for these actions to work.

3. Constructing streets, production chains, houses and public buildings

After constructing a warehouse or main market building, you should develop a network of streets.
Select "Dirt road" in the "Squares and streets" submenu. Build intersecting roads by extending paths from the warehouse to the outer edge of its service area. To enlarge the total service area, build a new main market building where the service area ends.

Production chains
In Anno 1503, the acquisition of building materials and the supply of goods to the population is organized through production chains.
The purpose of production chains is to produce one or more products and enter them into circulation.

A production chain always consists of:

1. Primary production in the form of a farm or plantation.
2. A workshop.
3. Storage (in the main market building or warehouse).
4. A sales location or market stand (if necessary)

Because the building materials you brought along will not last long, your next step should be to establish a production chain for more building materials. An important building material is wood, which is supplied by forester's huts. Two forester's huts be enough to supply the initial quantity of wood needed. Left-click the forester's hut in the "Farms and plantations" submenu of the Construction menu. Watch the fertility indicator above the building while selecting the construction site. The fuller the bar, the better the site is suited for the building. Once you have found a site, left-click to construct the forester's hut. Make sure that there is enough forest in the service area of the forester's hut. If necessary, you can plant more forest. You can find forest in the "Farms and plantations" submenu, next to the forester's hut.

To ensure your inhabitants' food supply, establish the food production chain by constructing a fisherman's hut ("Coastal buildings" submenu) on the coast and a hunting lodge ("Farms and plantations" submenu) in a wooded area with wild game in it.

Be sure to place suppliers in the service areas of buildings you are construction, or goods will not be correctly or efficiently picked up and processed. The building's entrance must always be aligned with a street.

Houses and public buildings
Now that the infrastructure for the future population of your city is in place, you can construct houses and public buildings. Find the necessary structures in the "Public buildings" submenu.
Start by building up to 20 houses and a chapel. Place the site of the chapel as close to the centre of the developing city as possible, so that it can be reached by all inhabitants. Be sure to link all buildings with streets.

Building entrances (shown by arrows when you select the building or are in info mode) have to be aligned with a street. Once you select a building, you can rotate it by using the arrows in the menu bar. If you keep the CTRL key pressed during construction, the building will align itself automatically with an existing street.

4. Constructing market stands

In Anno 1503, your inhabitants buy all they need at market stands.
Individual market stands can be constructed for each kind of goods, and they should be placed close to a warehouse or main market building for easy delivery.
By selling goods, you earn money that you can use to expand your cities, trade, and other needs.
The sales revenues are displayed on your city's balance sheet.
You can find the market stands in the "Public buildings" section of the construction menu.

A market stand can supply goods to only a certain number of inhabitants.
As your population increases, you might must build additional market stands.
A line of waiting people is a sure indicator that an additional market stand should be built.

Providing for your inhabitants' needs allows you to further develop your settlement.

Needs of the population

Fulfil your inhabitants' needs so that they will prosper and reach the next civilization level.
These needs consist of demands for certain consumer goods that have to be acquired via production chains and trade, as well as demands for public buildings (chapels, taverns, schools, etc.). A demanded public building should be placed so that the inhabitants' houses are in its service areas. If you double-click on a public building, the service area of all buildings of this type (e.g. all taverns) in the city becomes visible.

If you click on a house while the info mode is active, the inhabitants' needs are displayed. The inhabitant's facial expression shows whether he is satisfied with the current supply of goods. There are a total of five facial expressions. The goods fields below the inhabitant's figure indicate demanded products: Coloured fields show current needs. They contain a bar indicating the degree of satisfaction. The higher the bar, the better the population is supplied with this product or this building. If the bar display goes down, there is the danger of the population lacking supplies.
Grey fields show demands for goods not yet absolutely essential for the population.
If these demands are met, the prerequisites for reaching the next level have been fulfilled.

9) Game-related FAQ's

Q: I would like to build a building or field, but I cannot place it.
A: Check whether the location where you want to build is located within the service area of your city and whether the land is flat and appropriate for this type of building. Be sure you have enough money and building materials available.

Q: Why can't I build a warehouse on a different island?
A: Check the cargo hold of your ship to see whether you have sufficient building materials on board. Remember that you cannot build a warehouse on top of your ship. Try moving your ship a little bit to the side or try building on a different part of the coast.

Q: Will palm trees create the same amount of wood as conifers and deciduous trees?
A: These types of trees are equivalent and therefore produce the same amounts of wood.

Q: I cannot build the fire brigade!
A: The fire brigade must be researched at a school or university. If you are not yet able to do research when a fire breaks out, you have to demolish the affected buildings in order to contain the fire.

Q: How do I assign a crew to a war machine?
A: Select a crew and right-click on the war machine to be used. The unit is then linked to the machine.

Q: How can I station units in watchtowers and cannon towers?
A: To station units in a watchtower or cannon tower, select them and then right-click on the appropriate tower.

Q: How can I withdraw units from watchtowers and cannon towers?
A: To withdraw units from watchtowers or cannon towers, click on the building while the Info mode is active, left-click on the units, and then right-click to assign them a reachable destination. The units will then leave the tower.

Q: My units disappear when I select the fortress!
A: Your units are probably inside the fortress. Station units in the fortress by selecting one or several units and then right-clicking on the fortress. The "Status of fortress" submenu in the right-hand menu area shows a number of fields equal to the number of soldiers that can be stationed in the fortress.

Q: Can I repair damaged ships?
A: Yes. You can repair a ship by left-clicking it while in Info mode, and then sending it to one of your shipyards. Near the shipyard, the "Repair ship" option appears in the ship menu. Click on this icon, and the ship will be repaired. Note that the repair will cost you raw materials.

Q: I ordered the construction of a ship at my shipyard, but nothing is happening!
A: If a ship is in the construction field of the Shipyard menu, you have to click on the "Commission" icon to start the construction. This icon is to the bottom right of the construction field.


Tutorial No 1: Discover & Settle - If you dump your cargo overboard, you will need to restart the tutorial.

Tutorial No 2: Trade & Diplomacy - If you erase your warehouse, you will need to restart the tutorial. If you sign a trade agreement and subsequently declare war on the NPC, you will not be able to sign further trade agreements, even if you declare peace and pay a tribute.

10) Website info

Current information about Anno 1503 as well as about other products can be found on the following websites:

The official Anno 1503 website also allows you to register. This will keep you constantly updated about events related to Anno 1503

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