Troubleshooting the Black Screen Issue in Starfield
Navigating the vast cosmos in Starfield can be an exhilarating experience, but encountering a black screen can bring your interstellar journey to an abrupt standstill. However, you don’t have to worry as we have put together an exhaustive guide that will help you troubleshoot this problem. Buckle up and let’s get your game back on track!
Understanding the Black Screen Issue in Starfield
Starfield gamers may encounter a variety of problems like the game crashing, not launching, or the dreaded black screen.
Having your interstellar exploration hindered by these technical glitches can be disheartening. However, multiple solutions are available to tackle these issues.
1. Checking and Repairing Game Files
Corrupted game files are a known culprit for causing games like Starfield to crash, not launch, or produce a black screen.
You can tackle this issue by repairing these game files. The process for both Steam and Xbox app users is provided below.
For Steam Users
- Start the Steam client on your PC and log in.
- Go to the ‘ Library ‘ tab to see your games.
- Find Starfield and right-click on it to see the context menu, then select ‘Properties’.
- Go to the ‘ Installed Files ‘ tab.
- Click on ‘Verify Integrity of Game Files’. Steam will scan and fix any missing or corrupted files.
- After the process is complete, restart Steam and try to launch Starfield again.
By using the ‘Verify Integrity of Game Files’ option, you’re telling Steam to compare your local game files with the correct versions on the cloud. Any discrepancies are fixed immediately.
For Xbox App (PC Game Pass) Users
- Launch the Xbox app on your PC.
- Click on Starfield on the sidebar.
- Then click on the three dots ( … )
- Select Manage.
- Go to the Files tab.
- Click on the ” Verify and Repair ” button.
- Wait for the Xbox app to repair the game files.
- Restart your computer, and then try launching Starfield again through the Xbox app.
Much like Steam’s ‘Verify Integrity of Game Files’, the ‘Verify and Repair’ function on the Xbox app takes care of any missing or corrupted files causing problems.
2. Updating GPU Drivers
Graphics glitches, unexpected crashing, and the black screen in Starfield can often be traced back to outdated or incompatible GPU drivers.
Updating your GPU drivers could provide an easy fix, saving you from hours of troubleshooting later. The instructions for NVIDIA, AMD, and Intel graphics cards are provided below.
- Visit NVIDIA’s official drivers page: NVIDIA Driver Downloads
- Provide your card’s details or let the website automatically detect your GPU.
- Download the recommended driver package and run the installer.
- Follow the instructions provided, then restart your PC.
- Go to AMD’s driver support page: AMD Driver Support
- Search for your specific GPU model or use the automatic detection tool.
- Download the latest driver package and start the installation process.
- Complete the installation steps, then reboot your system.
- Visit Intel’s Download Center: Intel Driver & Support Assistant
- Click on ‘Download Now’ to download Intel’s automatic driver assistant tool.
- Follow the installation and running instructions for the tool, which will scan for outdated drivers and offer updates.
- Install any updates recommended and restart your computer.
3. Uninstalling Old Drivers Using DDU
Before installing new drivers, it’s recommended to completely remove all traces of your old drivers using DDU (Display Driver Uninstaller).
This is because remnants of old drivers can cause conflicts and affect the performance of new ones. DDU provides a clean slate for your new drivers, ensuring they function seamlessly.
- Download DDU: Display Driver Uninstaller (DDU)
- Run DDU in Safe Mode to remove all previous driver installations.
- Reboot and install your new drivers as outlined above.
4. Updating Windows
Ensure you’re using the latest Windows version. An outdated OS could be causing the black screen issue in Starfield.
Starfield requires at least Windows 10 version 21H1 (10.0.19043) or later. If your OS doesn’t meet this requirement, it could be causing the game to crash or not launch.
- Click on the Start menu, then Settings.
- Go to Update & Security.
- Click Check for updates
5. Installing C++ Redistributables
Visual C++ Redistributables are essential for your gaming experience. Though unseen, they’re instrumental for the game to function properly.
Missing or outdated redistributables can cause Starfield to crash or fail to launch.
- Navigate to Microsoft’s official site: Head over to Microsoft’s Visual C++ Redistributables page for the latest supported downloads.
- Look for the Visual Studio 2015, 2017, 2019, and 2022 sections: In this section, you’ll find download links for both X86 and X64 systems.
- Download and install them: Download the files and run the installers. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the process.
6. Closing Background Applications
Starfield requires sufficient system resources to function smoothly. Background applications can consume these resources, leading to crashes or laggy performance. You need to close unnecessary background applications to give Starfield the resources it needs.
- Open Task Manager: You can do this by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Esc or by right-clicking on your taskbar and selecting ‘Task Manager’.
- Identify Resource-Intensive Apps: Scroll through the list of running applications and processes. Identify ones that consume too much CPU or Memory.
- End Task: Right-click on the application and choose ‘ End Task ‘. This will shut down the application and free up system resources.
Performing a Clean Boot
If Starfield is still crashing after shutting down all background apps, it might be time to perform a clean boot. This can help you identify if another software is conflicting with your game.
- Type msconfig in the Windows search bar and hit Enter.
- Go to the ‘ Services ‘ tab and check the box that says ‘ Hide all Microsoft services ‘.
- Click on Disable All
- Then reboot your PC.
By performing a clean boot, you’re ensuring that no application interferes with Starfield. Try launching the game again once your system restarts.
7. Repairing Missing or Corrupted System Files
- Open Command Prompt as an administrator.
- Type ‘sfc /scannow’ and press Enter.
This command lets Windows locate and fix missing or corrupted system files that could be causing Starfield to malfunction.
8. Moving the Game from HDD to SSD
If your game is crashing, or stuttering, or you’re facing slow-loading screens, moving Starfield from an HDD to an SSD can significantly improve your experience.
SSDs offer faster read and write speeds, which can significantly reduce loading times and potentially prevent crashes.
For Steam Users
- Open Steam: Double-click on the Steam icon on your desktop or launch it from the Start menu.
- Navigate to Your Library: Once Steam is open, go to the ‘Library’ tab.
- Find Starfield: Scroll through your game list and right-click on Starfield.
- Go to Properties: Select ‘Properties’ from the context menu.
- Switch to the ‘Installed Files’ Tab: Find and select the ‘Installed Files’ tab.
- Click ‘Move Install Folder’: Hit this button and a new window will appear.
- Choose the SSD Location: Select the SSD drive where you want to move Starfield. Confirm the action.
For Xbox App Users (PC Game Pass)
- Launch the Xbox App: Open the Xbox App on your PC.
- Select Starfield: Find the game in your library.
- Click the Ellipsis (…): Next to the game title, click on the ellipsis.
- Select ‘Manage’: From the dropdown, choose ‘ Manage ‘.
- Go to the ‘Files’ Tab: In the management section, find and click on the ‘ Files ‘ tab.
- Click ‘Change Drive’: A new window will appear that lets you select a different drive. Choose your SSD and confirm the move.
By following these steps, you’re giving Starfield a faster, more reliable platform to operate from, resulting in a smoother gaming experience.
9. Reinstalling the Game
If none of the above solutions work:
- Uninstall Starfield.
- Download and install it again.
Sometimes, starting from scratch is the best solution. Reinstalling Starfield can often fix persistent issues like crashing, not launching, or black screen problems.
Your journey through the cosmos shouldn’t be hampered by these technical glitches. We hope this guide helps you overcome any Starfield-related issues, allowing you to focus on what really matters: exploring the vast universe.
Conclusion for Troubleshooting the Black Screen Issue in Starfield
In conclusion, while encountering a black screen in Starfield may seem like a frustrating setback, there are solutions available to get you back on track with your interstellar adventure. Whether it is checking your hardware compatibility, updating your graphics drivers, or adjusting the game settings, troubleshooting steps can be taken to resolve the issue. Furthermore, seeking assistance from the game’s support team or online communities can provide valuable insights and guidance. So, don’t let a temporary glitch halt your cosmic exploration – take action and continue your journey through the vastness of Starfield. Happy gaming!