Civilization 5 Crash Fixes
How To Fix Civilization 5 Crashes, Black Screens, Etc.
A number of users are reporting some problems that are causing their Civilization 5 games to crash. This page provides the most common solutions to these problems in plain, easy-to-follow English. Some of the more frequently reported problems include:
- DirectX incompatibility causing game to crash.
- Inability to save game progress to hard drive.
- Game crashes after intro movie.
- Game crashes when on full-screen mode.
- Black Screen of Death upon launch or out of range error.
Read on to find all the solutions.
Eliminate Civilization 5 Crashes by Changing Settings
To do many of the fixes, you'll need to edit some of the game files. To find these files, go to Documents\My Games\Sid Meier's Civilization 5.
The files ending with .ini are the ones you're going to be editing with a text editor like notepad (not word!). The key files you'll be editing include:
- Usersettings.ini (records user preferences).
- GraphicsSettingsDX9.ini: (control graphics settings for DirectX 9 mode).
- GraphicsSettingsDX11.ini: (control graphics settings for DirectX 10 and 11 modes).
- Config.ini: (records general game preferences).
Problem 1: Crashes due to DirectX incompatibilities
First, make sure sure your installation of DirectX and Visual C++ runtime libraries are up to date. To do that,
- Go to: C:\Program files\Steam\Steamapps\Common\sid meier's civilization v.
- To update the Visual C++ libraries, run \VCRedist\vcredist_x86.exe.
- To update Direct X, run \DirectX\DXSetup.exe.
Civilization 5 will work with DirectX 9, DirectX 10, and DirectX 11. Which version you use depends on your Windows operating system. Check out the table below to see which versions are compatible with your operating system.
If the version of DirectX you're running is compatible with your Windows operating system, then the problem is likely with your graphics card. In that case, just switch to an older version of DirectX.
Version of DirectX Supported
DirectX 9 & 10
DirectX 9, 10, & 11
DirectX 9, 10, & 11
Problem 2: Cannot Save Game to Hard Drive
This problem can arise because the location of the folder to which the game saves isn't set up properly. To fix it, you will have to re-set the folder location in the config.ini file. To do so, take the following steps:
- Open the Config.ini file using your text editor (probably Wordpad or Notepad)
- Look in the [Game] section
- Find FileName
- Set the location for a proper saved games folder. (usually C:\Users\YourComputerUserName\Documents\My Games\Sid Meier’s Civilization 5\Saves\)
- Save the file and run the game
Problem 3: Civilization 5 Crashes After Intro Movie
On certain hardware configurations and resolutions the game can crash while transitioning from the intro movie to the game menu. The easiest fix for this problem would be to turn off the intro movie. To do so,
- Open usersettings.ini with your text editor (Notepad or Wordpad usually)
- Look for SkipIntroVideo, set it to "1"
Problem 4: Civilization 5 Crashes in Full-Screen Mode
A number of people have reported that Civilization 5 crashes when launched in full-screen mode. The fix is to run the game out of a window, since there's no patch for this bug yet. To do so:
- Edit GraphicsSettingsDX9 (or 10 or 11, depending on what your game uses) with your text editor (usually Wordpad or Notepad).
- Find "fullscreen," and set it to "0."
- Go to the Cache folder and delete all *.db files inside.
Once you open the game, it should now start in window rather than full-screen mode.
Problem 5: Civilization 5 Black Screen or "Out of Range" Error
When this happens, I'd recommend running the game in another resolution, such as 1024x768, which can often easily fix the problem.
- Open GraphicsSettingsDX9.ini (or 10 or 11 depending on your setup) with your Text Editor (Notepad or Wordpad).
- Find WindowsResX and WindowResY.
- Change the WindowResX to 1024 (or any other resolution you want it to run in).
- Change the WindowResY to 768.