Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

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Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by daveyeisley on Sat Jul 24, 2010 7:43 am

It happens. It sucks.

You get excited about a night of adventuring only to find that your game refuses to cooperate.

Here are some generic tricks to try and fix it. Try the following steps one at a time in the order they are listed:

1. Relog. (log out of Aenea, and then log back in)

2. Re-start NWN. (close the program completely, wait 5 seconds, then re-open it)

3. Reboot your computer.

4. Temporarily turn all your sound and video settings all the way down, then restart NWN to see if they are the problem. (remember what you had them originally set to, so you can turn them back if this doesnt change the problem)

5. Go to your Neverwinter Nights game directory (wherever you installed NWN), and find your 'override' folder. Try renaming it to something like 'override.old', then log back in and try to play. If the problem goes away, something in your overrides is the culprit.

6. Download and run the NWN 1.69 Critical Rebuild patch which is appropriate for your system from this link.

7. Update your video and sound drivers. If the problem started after you very recently updated them, try to roll them back to the previous version instead.

8. Redownload your Aenea files and reinstall them.

9. Redownload the Community Expansion Pack (CEP) and reinstall it, then update it.

10. Uninstall NWN completely, then reboot your computer and reinstall NWN from scratch using the steps in this guide.

Update 9/16/2015:

For issues related to win7, check this out.

For Windows 10 general discussion, here is another thread.


Last edited by daveyeisley on Wed Sep 16, 2015 10:30 pm; edited 7 times in total
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by Eric of Atrophy on Sat Jul 24, 2010 12:09 pm

Thanks for the list, dave!
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by daveyeisley on Sun Apr 10, 2011 12:22 am

Bump for new folks having crash issues.
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by DPLincoln on Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:15 am

I have a fresh build of Win7-64 and did a fresh install of NWN just to play here. I downloaded the files for this server and logged in. What I get are times when the client just quits/freezes. Tonight for instance, I finished that armorsmith quest in beginners town and went to run toward the ox seller when the game just froze.

Video drivers are up to date
Sound drivers are up to date
All Windows functions are up to date
Sound is off except for voices

I also get a pause whenever another toon shows up nearby. This happened on my old XP box as well so I don't know if its the game or just something else.

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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by Ramana Jala on Wed Mar 21, 2012 10:14 am

It might or might not be on your end. I had some strange behavior last night, where I tried to Export Save my toon, and my game just crashed. Several times. This has happened before, but eventually normalized. But it was still that way this morning, not able to Export my character without the game crashing. I usually chalk up my freezing and crashing issues to my funky internet controller card, but in the light of you having problems last night also, it could be that the server or server ISP is at issue, especially since the server ISP has had issues lately.

Also on your end, it's possible that your Win7 and NWN might have issues with each other, and some research on the net might show if this had been determined to be so and what might be done about it. Older games with newer operating systems seem to always have issues. Also, video drivers have in the past given huge problems, but nVidia addressed that recently about NWN1 and NWN2, and I think they have that fixed for the most part. I don't know about ATI drivers. You can try putting all video options in the game down to low, and see if that helps. Also, tweaking of your video card settings might be in order.

The pause whenever things spawn, including another PC, is fairly usual. It's probably just a limitation of the speed of transmission and processing of the information back and forth from the server over the ISPs' cables into your system where the game and your OS and your video card all have to cooperate to render into video for you. It's actually a long chain of events, and amazing that it works as well as it does most of the time. Not much you can do about the server and the server ISP and even your ISP, but on your end you can reduce the lag from this by having your system bare-bones when playing the game. Minimal background programs running, and antispyware program either put in game mode or completely shut down. Caches cleaned.

Hope this gives you some ideas to pursue to resolve this issue, or at least tune up your system so that your computer is not part of the problem.
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by Elhanan on Wed Mar 21, 2012 10:20 am

Pls do not skip the original tips in the OP. While I am no Techie, Dave certainly is!
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by Ramana Jala on Wed Mar 21, 2012 11:20 am

Update: After about half an hour with no changes made in my own system, now I can Export Save normally again.

And although I wasn't recalling all the details of the OP when I wrote my post, it seems apparent that DPLincoln had already been trying to follow the instructions in the OP, as he had already verified that it was already a fresh install of the program, and he also verified up-to-date drivers.

Dave's helpful tips seem mostly oriented to someone who has already been successfully playing the game on their system before an issue crops up, which is not the case with our new player friend here, who has recently installed the game on his system, probably for the first time with this OS.

So there are many other potential issues to consider in the chain of making an online game work.
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by DPLincoln on Wed Mar 21, 2012 11:48 am

Ramana, you are correct in your reasoning.

My install from CD is like 1.08 so it's an old build that's been updated. I've actually run NWN1 on 3 different machines over the years and in multiple states across the US (HI, WA, MD, VA, TX) and have always had this issue whether it was base install without mods/haks or 'juiced' like this one. I've always felt it was more an audio issue as the game has run under both ATI and nVidia and under both Intel and AMD processors.

Yes, I do a complete uninstall and reinstall when I update the video drivers, including wiping out any old residue of previous installs. I even manually go through my registry to ensure nothing is left behind. Yes, I'm that particular. Maintenance weekend once a month takes a very long time.

I'll keep digging around I guess. Thanks all.
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by Ramana Jala on Wed Mar 21, 2012 1:31 pm

I have heard of issues with the Miles audio, so you can try switching the audio mode in the NWN options. Occasionally your own audio driver could be at fault, so updating or rolling back could be something to try. Most often it's the video, of course, because most of the information being transmitted is for that and all has to wait for the redraw, but rarely it could indeed be an audio driver. I don't have too many tweaks available for my own audio driver, it's either a version that works or it doesn't, but if yours has a control panel, I'd try tweaks to that, along with tweaks in the game options.

I assume that you did the Critical Rebuild for your NWN installation, as that's the only update available for the game anymore. I wouldn't think that an old CD is any issue, because with the Critical Rebuild, I'm assuming that the game is practically completely rewritten.

So, what you just mentioned, "issue that you've always had", do you mean this is the lag when other players or creatures spawn, or the freezing and crashing?

Lag is always with us with NWN, as playing an old game multiplayer over the net is just something that you tweak to be good enough then live with it. Like I said, I have some degree of lag, depending on the server and ISPs health mostly, but I've got mine at a manageable level of just a slight hesitation when things spawn. I know it's going to be there, and I compensate my combat tactics for it. When it's worse, I end my antispyware (which I usually have in 'game mode' even when not gaming), and that usually speeds me up. Bad lag of course can lead to freezing and crash. I've learned to deal with some degree of this, which as I said may or may not be the fault of my own system, by quickslotting the save function (;;tool backup), and saving religiously after any event (quest or loot). It's unfortunate, but if your freeze and crash is only happening a couple of times a week, then this may be what has come to be considered acceptable with this old game and the uncertain states of OS compatibility and ISP connections, and you may just not have realized that others have gotten used to this level of disconnect. It's only when it happens more often, like several times in a day, is it considered unacceptably unusual and you will read of others complaining about it, and things being investigated to improve the situation. So it's a matter of degree, and you haven't really specified how often this is happening to you.


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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by daveyeisley on Wed Mar 21, 2012 3:18 pm

Lag when rendering PCs or NPCs is normal.

If you have the sound turned completely off, that would prevent sound crashes. It must be something else.

If you are running on Win7 64, you may need to set your CPU affinity in the game options to -2. NWN doesn't play nice with multi-core processors.
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by Ramana Jala on Thu Mar 22, 2012 10:12 am

I didn't realize how much had already been written in this forum about problems with NWN on the Win7 OS. Just in case you might have missed it, here's a page that Dave found with lots about it, including addressing lag. The part about 1.69 might be relevant, I know that caused lotsa lag issues in my previous PW --however that might play havoc with the custom content.
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by Ramana Jala on Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:31 am

Since I just did a nVidia update, I was reminded of how helpful I've found Koroush Ghazi's Tweak Guides for understanding and tweaking video settings in my video card control panel and in the game, that have significantly affected lag:

TweakGuides.com Tweaking Companion Free version of the guide for download, by OS. This one is the basic entire computer overview.

Gamer's Graphic and Display Settings Guide

How to Get Rid of Lag

Gamer's Guide to Stable Gaming

nVidia Forceware Tweak Guide

ATI Catalyst Tweak Guide

He has guides for many specific games, unfortunately not for NWN1. But the one for NWN 2 might be somewhat relevant. I've had to experiement and get info from other places about NWN 1, but generally using the guides above to crank down the video card settings (in the NWN1 specific program view of the nVidia control panel) for old OpenGL type games will get you there.

Hope you'll find these also helpful for getting the most performance in your game. Smile

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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by Eric of Atrophy on Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:52 pm

Thanks to y'all for this info ... I am too tired now, as I have been fighting the Darkfist's Tunic issue and a dropout issue all weekend ... when I have recovered, I will investigate these links and hopefully be back in business in the basement!
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

Post by daveyeisley on Wed Sep 16, 2015 8:03 pm

Heya The Amethyst Dragon, any chance we might get a sticky on this? Its getting tricky to find in the list of threads, and I don't think we have a more comprehensive general/generic support post anywhere.
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Re: Step-by-Step common fixes for NWN Crashing/Freezing/Graphic wierdness

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