Game Discussion: Microsoft Sudoku (Windows)

How to Roll Back Windows Casual Games on Windows 10

  • Posted on 11 July 20 at 09:46, Edited on 10 March 21 at 04:42 by FoolontheHill24
    Introduction:
    This is going to be a long post, but hopefully it spreads around. I've seen a lot of people upset about the casual games being automatically updated from the windows 8/8.1 version to the windows 10 version. I've also seen a lot of people saying that the only way to finish off those games is to either get a windows 8.1 machine or to download and configure a virtual machine using windows 8.1. This is no longer true. I've found a way to add those games back to windows 10 (and even some of the previously only windows 8/8.1 games onto windows 10). Also, it seems they save your progress, so going back to the current version from the old version is okay. At least all of my progress was still there for the new versions once I went back to them. I can't promise you that yours will be though, so I take no responsibility if it isn't. Do this at your own risk. There are 2 main groups of games that are going to be covered in this tutorial.

    Games broken down by difficulty to get:
    First, the easiest ones to roll back. I'll call them Group 1. They include Sudoku (Win 8), Treasure Hunt (Win 8), Jigsaw (Win 8), Minesweeper (Win 8), Microsoft Solitaire Collection (Win 8) and while not updated yet - The Sudoku JP stack (Win 8) and to some degree Microsoft Jackpot (Though I haven't tested this one out yet and it has a slight caveat which i'll get to later).

    Next, Group 2 can be rolled back, but it is slightly more difficult, though not by much. These include Microsoft Mahjong (Win 8 - the 25g version), Microsoft Wordament (Win 8), and Microsoft Bingo (Win 8).


    Side Note:
    I won't post any links directly to the files as i'm not sure if that goes against the rules. They were free games, and I doubt Microsoft would care about people trying to roll back their games, but TA might and I don't want to get in trouble. They may not like me posting outside links as well, so you will be doing a little bit of google-fu yourself. I also don't want to get my inbox flooded by people asking for the files. So for the time being, I will just post what I did to get them.

    Okay. Onto how to get them. First Group 1:
    For the group 1 games, all you need to do is find a copy of the .appxbundle installer file. Where would you find that you may ask? Well, from Microsoft, of course. Though it's from them slightly indirectly. We will use a middle-man. That middle-man is adguard.
    1.) Google "store rg-adguard" and it should be the first link. It has a nice blue background and a microsoft store icon at the top. If you see that, you are in the right place. What adguard does, is it searches the Microsoft servers for files. You give it a link, and it will return to you what it sees. Thankfully, a lot of older versions are still on the Microsoft servers. NOTE: THIS WILL NOT WORK FOR PAID GAMES. IT IS NOT A PIRACY TOOL. So for this, let's roll with sudoku.
    2.) Get the link to Sudoku from the microsoft store (https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/microsoft-sudoku/9wzdncrfh...) and put it in the textbox on adguard. Change the dropdown from "RP" to "Retail" and then click the checkmark.
    3.) It will give you a list of everything it sees for that page. You should see a couple versions of Sudoku (please read the filename as there are also some non-sudoku files there. I'm not sure what the VCLibs stuff is. Ignore that). The ones we are after are .appxbundle files. Appxbundles are offline installers for windows programs for people that don't have good internet or people who want to put an app on a computer that doesn't have internet access. Microsoft.MicrosoftSudoku_2018.1106.43.5550_neutral_~_8wekyb3d8bbwe.appxbundle looks like a winner. Download that. You DO NOT need the corresponding .BlockMap file.
    4.) Double click the downloaded file and it will give you a pop-up asking if you want to install it. Yes. Yes you do. It will warn you that you have a newer version installed. Too bad, we are installing it anyway. Continue on and you've now successfully rolled back Sudoku. This will work for any of the games I mentioned in Group 1 up above.

    Group 2:
    These are slightly more difficult as we are now dealing with .appx files instead of .appxbundle files. Also, we are going to be installing 32-bit versions on a (what probably most of you are running) 64-bit version of windows 10. Let's do it for the 25g version of Mahjong.
    1.) Go to adguard and put in the Microsoft store link for Mahjong (https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/microsoft-mahjong/9wzdncrf...)
    2.) You'll notice there are some .appxbundles, but mahjong switched so long ago, all of them are the Windows 10 version. But Microsoft still has the 8.1 version on their servers so the 8.1 users can still grab it. You should see Microsoft.MicrosoftMahjong_1.9.0.40714_x86__8wekyb3d8bbwe.appx. The .appx file extension is what 8.1 used and you see x86 on the end of it, indicating a 32-bit version. That's the one we are after. Download it. You may try running it, but it will stop mid-install and tell you it's not the right architecture. You are trying to sideload a 32-bit program on a 64-bit system, and windows doesn't like that. How do I get around that, you may ask?
    3.) Use the shortcut "Windows-I" to open Windows Settings.
    4.) Go to "Update & Security".
    5.) Go to "For Developers"
    6.) Select "Developer Mode" and let it download everything it needs to.
    7.) Once it's finished, it may require a restart. I don't really remember as I did it a few hours ago and was troubleshooting a bunch of stuff all at once. If it asks to restart, let it.
    8.) You can try installing the file we downloaded earlier, again. It will probably stop you again because you probably still have the current version of mahjong installed. If so, delete the current version of mahjong. Just search "mahjong" on your PCs search bar and when you see it come up, right click it and hit "uninstall".
    9.) Once it's uninstalled, run the file we downloaded earlier, but this time, it'll actually finish.
    10.) Open it up and get those sweet 25gs.
    11.) Once you finish the old version of mahjong you can reinstall the current version from the microsoft store. If you're still working on the current version, all of your progress should still be there. Mine was, but again, I TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY IF YOUR PROGRESS ISN'T THERE.

    Finally, i've heard you need to have these games on your Microsoft account for this to work. I've been told by someone that if you don't have it in your download history the game will just crash. I haven't confirmed that. For most of the games, this isn't a problem. They are still on the microsoft store with the exception of Jackpot and they are free. So just download the current version and then do this. You can get Jackpot through adguard as it's still on the microsoft servers, but the game has been delisted so i'm not sure how it will act if you didn't grab it while it was still on the store. I'd be interested to hear how that works if someone wants to try it.

    Hopefully I made this tutorial clear. If I didn't let me know and i'll try to do better.

    Files: How to Roll Back Windows Casual Games on Windows 10
  • l306l DaRkRoAsTl306l DaRkRoAsT1,017,129
    Posted on 11 July 20 at 19:36
    Thank you for this! This is quick and easy to follow. A great fix for something that should never have been ‘broken’ without asking the owner if they wanted to update.
  • J4CKA1J4CKA1242,053
    Posted on 17 July 20 at 11:28
    Saving for later use.
  • Noodles JrNoodles Jr1,303,920
    Posted on 20 July 20 at 03:43
    Unfortunately the only available Win 8 Solitaire is the 25G version, not the 200G version. I can only assume it's the same for Microsoft Minesweeper as well
    If at first you don't succeed, lag switch.
  • Posted on 20 July 20 at 09:52, Edited on 20 July 20 at 10:03 by FoolontheHill24
    Noodles Jr said:
    Unfortunately the only available Win 8 Solitaire is the 25G version, not the 200G version. I can only assume it's the same for Microsoft Minesweeper as well
    Microsoft.MicrosoftSolitaireCollection_2018.710.602.0_neutral___8wekyb3d8bbwe.AppxBundle is solitaire 200G. It's a little glitchy for me in that the main menu doesn't load half the time, but closing it and reopening it (although the menus look messed up) allows me to get into the daily challenges and main playlists. You are right in that the 40G version is on there as well under Microsoft.MicrosoftSolitaireCollection_1.9.1.50210_x86__8wekyb3d8bbwe.Appx.
    You can verify by looking at my profile. While you can't see the achievement list in-app, I specifically completed a daily challenge on the 11th in it to unlock one of the title update achievements to verify this one was the correct version. And even if it's menus are semi-broken for you as they are for me, it's still light years better than playing it on a laggy vm.

    Microsoft.MicrosoftMinesweeper_2019.1218.849.0_neutral___8wekyb3d8bbwe.appxbundle is Minesweeper Win 8.

    I'm not sure if it was because it was easier to deploy a title update as an appxbundle or if it was because they dropped right at the end of Windows 8's life/right before windows 10 came out, but those ones aren't appx. Bingo 200 is still an appx and it was released in between them. I can't quite explain that. I've fixed the listing in my original post indicating it as such. But give it another shot.

    l306l DaRkRoAsT said:
    Thank you for this! This is quick and easy to follow. A great fix for something that should never have been ‘broken’ without asking the owner if they wanted to update.
    Thank you. I'm glad you liked it/found it useful.

    J4CKA1 said:
    Saving for later use.
    Thanks :)

    If you guys know people who got locked out due to a forced update, spread the word.
  • Posted on 20 July 20 at 20:27
    I accidentally Bean Dived Minesweeper (Win 8) in a moment of idleness at work and thought with the impending update to Win 10 version I had guaranteed myself an unobtainable or two... now I have a fighting chance. Thanks so much.
  • VaulkosVaulkos133,856
    Posted on 21 July 20 at 14:29
    This is excellent news. A question, though:

    Can this be used as a workaround for an issue with the win8 and win10 versions not syncing, especially if you played them on separate machines?

    I completed Solitaire win8, for instance, but attempts to sync my data on my newer laptop with the win10 version have failed.

    If I roll back to Solitaire win8 on the newer laptop, then try to update to Solitaire win10 again, is there a chance it'll finally sync?
  • Posted on 21 July 20 at 19:26, Edited on 21 July 20 at 19:27 by FoolontheHill24
    Vaulkos said:
    This is excellent news. A question, though:

    Can this be used as a workaround for an issue with the win8 and win10 versions not syncing, especially if you played them on separate machines?

    I completed Solitaire win8, for instance, but attempts to sync my data on my newer laptop with the win10 version have failed.

    If I roll back to Solitaire win8 on the newer laptop, then try to update to Solitaire win10 again, is there a chance it'll finally sync?
    That I don't know. It may be dependent on the game, and I haven't completed solitaire windows 8. I thought going from sudoku win 8 to win 10 would have the data carry over, but it doesn't. Apparently jigsaw 10 doesnt use jigsaw 8s data either. You can always try. It looks like the data is stored server-side, so whenever I delete one game and install the other version, it pulls the correct data for that version. If you could do that to try and force a sync, I don't know, but I don't see it as something that would hurt you to try. I've been deleting and installing most of these games and haven't lost anything yet, but reading the solitaire forums, they are saying there is nothing past the initial sync (though that isn't with additional rollbacks. Just the initial update forward).
  • VaulkosVaulkos133,856
    Posted on 21 July 20 at 19:39
    FoolontheHill24 said:
    That I don't know. It may be dependent on the game, and I haven't completed solitaire windows 8. I thought going from sudoku win 8 to win 10 would have the data carry over, but it doesn't. Apparently jigsaw 10 doesnt use jigsaw 8s data either. You can always try. It looks like the data is stored server-side, so whenever I delete one game and install the other version, it pulls the correct data for that version. If you could do that to try and force a sync, I don't know, but I don't see it as something that would hurt you to try. I've been deleting and installing most of these games and haven't lost anything yet, but reading the solitaire forums, they are saying there is nothing past the initial sync (though that isn't with additional rollbacks. Just the initial update forward).
    I suppose I'll give it a shot and post my results when I get home then. My issue was that I didn't even open win10 Solitaire until after completing win8, and it still wouldn't sync, although like I said, that was on separate devices.

    Thank you for replying so quickly.
  • VaulkosVaulkos133,856
    Posted on 21 July 20 at 23:19
    Well, I can confirm this method will let you play win8 Solitaire on your win10 computer, with no loss of data on the win8 version, but it didn't fix my sync problem.

    Still, the instructions were clear and very helpful, and this will definitely aid a number of people.
  • J4CKA1J4CKA1242,053
    Posted on 23 July 20 at 02:35
    Vaulkos said:
    Well, I can confirm this method will let you play win8 Solitaire on your win10 computer, with no loss of data on the win8 version, but it didn't fix my sync problem.

    Still, the instructions were clear and very helpful, and this will definitely aid a number of people.
    i'm programming illiterate. how hard is this for someone who knows how to navigate a pc but not a programmer?
  • VaulkosVaulkos133,856
    Posted on 23 July 20 at 02:47
    J4CKA1 said:
    i'm programming illiterate. how hard is this for someone who knows how to navigate a pc but not a programmer?
    I didn't notice it being very taxing if you don't know computer basics, as long as you pay attention to the file names or markers in the names that were mentioned above. I did have to try two Solitaire files, but the second one worked and it was noticeable where I made the mistake.
  • CrysisWarXX3CrysisWarXX3580,692
    Posted on 23 July 20 at 03:25
    Great work that's gonna help a lot of peoples.
  • Posted on 30 July 20 at 09:29
    so trying to install solitaire, found the right version (I think) but come across the following message when I try and install it.

    Ask the developer for a new app package. This package may conflict with a package that is already installed or it may depend on things not installed here (package dependencies) or be made for a different architecture (0x80073CF3)
  • VaulkosVaulkos133,856
    Posted on 31 July 20 at 03:09
    CaramelCardinal said:
    so trying to install solitaire, found the right version (I think) but come across the following message when I try and install it.

    Ask the developer for a new app package. This package may conflict with a package that is already installed or it may depend on things not installed here (package dependencies) or be made for a different architecture (0x80073CF3)
    I had that issue. If I remember right, when I tried to install it a second time without closing out of the install popup, it worked anyways.
  • Posted on 31 July 20 at 03:22
    Yeah. You could either uninstall the one you currently have and try again, or if it's an appx and not an appxbundle, you'll need to put windows into developer mode.
  • Posted on 31 July 20 at 17:05
    Still cant get to work, though I'm not convinced its downloading full file, only reason I say that is same link sometimes downloads a generic file and not a appxbundle
  • J4CKA1J4CKA1242,053
    Posted on 31 July 20 at 17:58
    Would this be easier to just get windows 8 on a PC?
  • Posted on 31 July 20 at 21:01
    J4CKA1 said:
    Would this be easier to just get windows 8 on a PC?
    No. Installing a vm will take 40gb and be incredibly slow. That was the main reason I wrote this up. vms aren't bad short term options, but if you need to go for gold medals, the lag from a vm will extend that 2-3x. At least it would have for me because of how laggy oraclevm ran on my pc. Getting an 8.1 machine is more expensive and time consuming. But you are free to do whatever you want. Of the 15 or so people that have contacted me about this, Caramel's the only one that has run into an issue. I don't know what's going on there. But try it, and if you don't like this method, go get a windows 8.1 machine. It costs you nothing to try.

    CaramelCardinal said:
    Still cant get to work, though I'm not convinced its downloading full file, only reason I say that is same link sometimes downloads a generic file and not a appxbundle
    It should be an appxbundle. I'm not sure what you're doing, but i'll send you a link to solitaire 8.1 (200g version). If you have the win 10 version on your pc, you may need to uninstall that before installing this one, but it should work for you. Check your inbox.
  • Posted on 03 August 20 at 08:20
    FoolontheHill24 said:
    CaramelCardinal said:
    Still cant get to work, though I'm not convinced its downloading full file, only reason I say that is same link sometimes downloads a generic file and not a appxbundle
    It should be an appxbundle. I'm not sure what you're doing, but i'll send you a link to solitaire 8.1 (200g version). If you have the win 10 version on your pc, you may need to uninstall that before installing this one, but it should work for you. Check your inbox.
    cheers, still having same issue even with that one, time to go investigating and find out what i'm missing.
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