Weird, never had a problem like that before. What happens if you start the game, so it's in 800x600 windowed mode, and then switch to fullscreen mode? Do you have any other games that don't work now or is it just HoMM II?
It sounds like the game failed when the virusscan pop up appeared, and maybe set some internal flag that Fusion doesn't like. Probably some kind of safe mode. Does the game have any sort of external setting/option program that can be ran (some games add an extra shortcut in the start menu). Maybe try looking in the game directory and see if there is some sort of .cfg type file to modify or rename so it creates a new one (be sure to back up original first). Last thing would be reinstalling the game. (save your save games!)
Reinstalling tools will not trigger Windows activation, but it doesn't sound like that would make a lot of difference (won't hurt to try).
It's a definitely bizarre problem. I've been scratching my head for a while now.
1. Start in 800x600 mode, then switch to full screen.
- I hadn't tried this yet, so I was hopeful. Unfortunately, this still doesn't work. Upon switching to full screen, the vm goes even crazier with resolution changes. It's seemingly stuck in a loop of resolution changes (easily over 50) for over 30 seconds before it crashes again with the same error. I see flashing glimpses of the game in a centered 800x600 screen with black borders, 800x600 screen anchored in the upper left corner, correctly scaled 1600x1200 full screen (I'm briefly hopeful for 200ms at a time!), and strange artifact-y portions of my desktop in 256 colors.
2. Other game behavior?
- WOW. This might be useful. I hadn't tried to play any other games since this behavior started. Now, the quake 3 arena demo is NOT working correctly in full screen mode either. This was definitely working correctly before my HoMM II problem occurred. Running the quake3 demo with the vm in full screen mode results in an unresponsive grey screen. Running the q3 demo in windowed mode works perfectly. I have no idea what's going on, but this seems diagnostically useful.
3. HoMM II config files?
- I've already tried a completely clean reinstall of HoMM II with no change in behavior. I'll look to see if there are things that I can fiddle with in the meantime, but I'm not hopeful.
4. Reinstalling VMware tools?
- Is there a recommended procedure to go about doing this? I'm nervous about screwing things up further if I mess up the tools installation.