How to Fix Crashing issue While Playing Stray?

Stray was launched recently on a Steam platform, but after the release, some users have reported that they are experiencing crashing issues while playing Stray. They also mentioned that they have high-end computers. Nevertheless, the game crashes frequently. Some of the main contributors to this issue are temporary corrupted data, incompatible or corrupted drivers, interference from the third-party software, and using wrong overclock settings.

Stray Cover Art
Stray Cover Art

Speaking about the causes, there can be many reasons that can trigger this issue. So we decided to write down all the causes below:-

  • Corrupted Temporary Data- If you don’t know, Ram stores the game data temporarily, which sometimes gets corrupted and can cause game crashes. Either try restarting the computer or game.
  • Corrupted Graphics Driver- If your graphics driver is corrupted, you will encounter crashes unless you reinstall the graphics driver.
  • Interference from the Antivirus- Third-Party Antivirus or Windows Defender could interfere in the game by blocking essential files. To avoid this, try disabling the antivirus or allowing the game through the firewall.
  • Conflict of Software- Some third-party software or even Microsoft services can interfere with the game, which can cause many problems along with game crashes.
  • Not Having Administrator Permissions- Administrator permissions are very important for an application because it prevents unnecessary interruptions from the third-party software or the antivirus.
  • Corrupted Game files- If the game files are corrupted or damaged, the crashing issue may arise due to the corruption in the game data. To fix this, you must verify the game files to restore the corruption.
  • GPU, Ram, and CPU Overclocking- If you have overclocked some of your hardware devices, like GPU, CPU, and Ram, you may encounter a crashing problem while playing. Although overclocking the hardware increases performance, it may bring some issues if the settings you have set are not compatible with the graphics driver.
  • Outdated Windows- Outdated Windows is also included in causing crashing problems as new cumulative updates launch every month due to improving Windows Security. Therefore, keep your Windows up to date.
  • High Graphics Settings- Incompatible graphic settings can also trigger this issue if the graphics settings are high and cannot be handled by the graphics card. Keep in mind that if your graphics card can handle the game, you don’t need to lower graphics settings.

1. Restart the Computer

First, you should restart your computer. Restarting the computer eliminates the temporary data stored in the Ram and restarts the required services. Restarting the computer may help to fix the crashing issue. Most users don’t take this solution seriously because they don’t have enough knowledge about what restarting the computer does.

2. Put -d3d11, -dx11 or -dx12 in the launch options

If restarting the computer does not fix the crashing issue, try adding some launch commands that will help render three dimension graphics with the help of Direct3D, a part of DirectX, which is a collection of Application programming interfaces (API) used to render graphics components. To fix the crashing problem, put -d3d11, -dx11, and -dx12 one by one and check if the issue persists.

  1. To add commands to launch options, open Steam and go to Library
  2. Right-click on Stray and select Properties

    Go to Game Properties
    Go to Game Properties
  3. On the right pane, you will see launch options, put -d3d11, -dx11, or -dx12 one by one and see which command fixes the crashing issue
    Adding Launch Commands
    Adding Launch Commands
  4. Once done, launch the game and check if it resolves your problem.

3. Remove Game Configurations Files

If the issue is still there, you can try to delete the configuration data, which stores user configuration like Graphics settings, login credentials, and sensitivity settings along with the graphics cache. Removing the configuration file will fix the issue if it arises due to incompatible settings. Follow the steps to remove the game configuration:-

  1. Press the Win + R at the same time to launch Run Program
  2. Type Appdata and press Enter
  3. Go to Local and right-click on HK_Project, select Delete

    Delete Game Configuration Folder
    Delete Game Configuration Folder
  4. Once done, launch the game and see if the issue is fixed.

4. Verify the Game files

Game files can easily get corrupted due to interference from the antivirus or for some other reasons. Corruption of the game files could also cause frequent crashes. To fix this, either verify the game files or reinstall the game. However, we recommend verifying the integrity of game files because there is no difference between reinstallation and verification, as verifying the game files restores and replaces the corrupted files.

  1. To verify the game files, open Steam and click Library from the top
  2. Once you are in Library, right-click on Stray and select Properties

    Navigate to Steam Game Properties
    Navigate to Steam Game Properties
  3. Click Local Files then click Verify Integrity Of Game Files

    Verify Integrity Of Game Files
    Verify Integrity Of Game Files
  4. Once done, launch the game and see if this fixes the Stray crashing issue.

5. Run the Stray As An Administrator

If you haven’t tried to run the game with administrator privileges, give it a try before proceeding. Running a program with the administrator mode helps eliminate the interference from the applications along with preventing interceptions.

  1. To run Stray with administrator permissions, right-click on the Stray launcher from the desktop
  2. Select Run As Administrator, and wait for the game to launch
    Run Stray in Administrator Mode
    Run Stray in Administrator Mode
  3. If the game runs without crashing then again right-click on the Stray launcher
  4. Go to Properties and click the Compatibility tab from the top
  5. Tick the option Run This Program As An Administrator

    Run Stray With Compatibility Settings
    Run Stray With Compatibility Settings
  6. Once done, click Apply then click OK to save the changes.

6. Close Overlay Apps

If you use overlays applications such as discord and steam, then kindly close it as it can cause crashing issues by utilizing most of your Ram usage.

  1. To do that, open Task Manager by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Esc on the keyboard
  2. Select the overlay application and click End Task from the bottom right of the Window
    Run Stray With Compatibility Settings
    Run Stray With Compatibility Settings
  3. Once done, launch the game and check if the issue persists.

7. Uninstall Overclock Application

GPU, CPU, or even Ram overclocking can run you into crashing problems. Although overclock improves the gaming experience alongside overall performance. Still, it is not recommended to set the overclock settings unless you have enough knowledge about your graphics card and MSI Afterburner. If you don’t want to revert overclock settings, read this full guide on overclocking.

  1. To uninstall overclock application, press the Wind + R on the keyword
  2. Type Appwiz.CPL and press Enter

    Navigating to Programs and Features
    Navigating to Programs and Features
  3. You will be navigated to Programs & Features
  4. Find and right-click on your overclock application
  5. Select Uninstall once done, launch the game, and if the crashing issue is fixed.
    Uninstall Overclock Applications
    Uninstall Overclock Applications

8. Clean installation of the Graphics Driver

Your graphics driver would be corrupted, or your driver might have downloaded from a third-party source like Driver Boaster, etc. The solution to fix the crashing issue is to clean the installation of the graphics driver. The graphics driver comes with a verified sign that proves to the applications and games that they are safe to utilize as they are downloaded from the official source.

8.1 Uninstall Graphics Driver

To uninstall the graphics driver, we have an application called DDU, which stands for Display Driver Uninstaller, usually used to uninstall the driver entirely from the computer. Although you can also uninstall the driver via device manager, some files may be left over that might cause a conflict between drivers. Therefore, we prefer DDU over the device manager.

  1. To uninstall the driver, go to the following link and download Display Driver Uninstaller
  2. Once the downloading is complete, now you need to boot Windows in the Safe Mode, recommended by DDU for better uninstallation
  3. Click Start Menu then click Power Button the click Retsrat while holding the Shift Key on the keyword
  4. Once you saw the startup screen, navigate to the following path and click Restart from the bottom right
    Troubleshoot>Advanced option>Startup Settings

    Click Restart to Boot Safe Mode
    Click Restart to Boot Safe Mode
  5. Once your computer boot into safe mode, go to the downloads directory and right-click on the DDU folder
  6. Click Extract to DDU, and wait for the extraction process to complete
    Extracting DDU Folder
    Extracting DDU Folder
  7. Navigate to the extracted folder, and run Display Driver Uninstaller
  8. Click Extract and navigate to the extracted folder
    Extracting DDU Application
    Extracting DDU Application
  9. Open Display Driver Uninstaller, and choose your device type and its vendor
  10. Click Clean and Restart

    Select Device Type and It's Vendor
    Select Device Type and Its Vendor

8.2 Install Graphics Driver

  1. It’s time to install the latest Graphics Driver. For that, you need to go Graphics Card manufacturer’s website
  2. Select your Graphics Card according to its specification then click Search or Download the driver
  3. You may be asked for the operating system, select your Windows OS
  4. And download the Graphics Driver by clicking on the Download button
    Download Graphics Driver
    Download Graphics Driver
  5. Once it’s done, install the driver by running the installer and following the on-screen instruction.

9. Allow Stary.exe file to Antivirus

Allowing applications through firewall aids when the antivirus interferes with the game files while launching. Usually, Windows Defender or even third-party antivirus can prevent you from playing by blocking essential data required to launch the game. Below are the steps to allow stray.exe in firewall settings. If the solution does not fix this issue, try disabling the Windows firewall.

  1. Click Start Menu and type Control Panel

    Open Control Panel From Start Menu
    Open Control Panel From Start Menu
  2. Open the control panel, go to the following location
    Control Panel\System and Security\Windows Defender Firewall
  3. Click Allow An App or Feature through Windows Defender Firewall from the left pane
    Navigating to Firewall Allowing Apps and Features Settings
    Navigating to Firewall Allowing Apps and Features Settings
  4. Click Change Settings then click Allow Another App

    Allow Another App
    Allow Another App
  5. Click Browse and go to the location where you have installed Stray
  6. Select Stray.exe and click Open then click Add
  7. Once done, tick both boxes under Private and Public

    Enabling Private And Public Network in Firewall
    Enabling Private And Public Networks in Firewall
  8. Click OK to save the changes
  9. Now launch Stray and see if it fixes your issue.

10. Perform Clean boot

Clean boot is a technique to find the clear-cut cause. It starts Windows with the required drivers and services. Moreover, it disables the startup application. Sometimes, third-party drivers, software, and Microsoft services create problems by interfering in the running games and applications. For that reason, we use a clean boot technique to find the clear-cut cause.

  1. To perform a clean boot, click Start Menu and type MSConfig

    launch System Configuration
    launch System Configuration
  2. Open the first settings belonging to System Configuration
  3. Click Selective Startup and go to the Services tab
    Go For Selective Startup
    Go For Selective Startup
  4. Click Hide All Microsoft Services and click Disable All
  5. Once done, click Apply and click OK

    Performing Clean Boot
    Performing Clean Boot
  6. Restart your computer then launch the game and see if Stray still crashing.

11. Update Windows

Microsoft releases cumulative updates for their operating system to improve Windows security and user experience. However, Windows updates also offer their users to update their device drivers without users to do anything. If you are missing any driver or update, you may encounter a crashing issue. Therefore, keep your Windows up to date. Below are the steps to update Windows:-

  1. To update Windows, launch the Setting by pressing Win + I at the same time
  2. Go to Windows & Security

    Go to Windows Update Security
    Go to Windows Update Security
  3. Click Check For Updates. If the updates are available, download them and restart your computer
    Updating Windows to the Latest
    Updating Windows to the Latest

12. Lower Graphics settings

If you can play the game for some time, then try to lower the graphics settings. If your graphics card cannot handle the settings you applied, we recommend you reduce some settings as it may aid in fixing the crashing issue.

  1. To do that, launch Stray and navigate to the Settings then Graphics Settings
  2. Here lower all your Graphics settings including resolution and check if the game still crashes.
    Lower Down Graphics Settings
    Lower Down Graphics Settings

13. Transfer a Game into SSD or Different Drive

If neither of the methods worked, then the issue is most probably due to corrupted files. Either try reinstalling the game to a different hard drive or transfer the game manually by copy-pasting. you can follow the steps written below:-

  1. Go to Steam and right-click on Stray
  2. Click Properties, then click Local Files from the left pane
    Navigate to Steam Game Properties
    Go to Game Properties
  3. Click Browse, and when you click on browse, file explore will open where the Stray has been installed
    Browse Game Files
    Browse Game Files
  4. Just go one folder back and right-click on the Stray folder then click Copy
  5. Paste it into SSD or a different hard driver
  6. Once done, go back to the Stream Library
  7. Right-click on the Stray, hover your mouse on Manage, and click Uninstall

    Uninstalling Stray From Steam
    Uninstalling Stray From Steam
  8. Once done, click the Install button and select the location where you have copied the Stray folder
    Choose Different Location
    Choose Different Location
  9. It will verify the files, which takes some time
  10. Once done, launch the game and see if the crashing issue is fixed.
Hamza Mohammad Anwar
Hamza Khan is an intermediate javaScript web developer specializing in reactjs, MongoDb, express nodeJs, and more. He creates faster and better applications using mern technologies.

Expert Tip

How to Fix Crashing issue While Playing Stray?

If the issue is with your Computer or a Laptop you should try using Restoro which can scan the repositories and replace corrupt and missing files. This works in most cases, where the issue is originated due to a system corruption. You can download Restoro by clicking the Download button below.

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