Fix: Risk of Rain Black Screen

Risk of Rain is an action platformer with plenty of other elements. With permanent death as a primary feature for the game, players will have to play their best to get as far as they can.  You will have to fight on a mysterious planet with randomly spawning enemies and bosses.

It all sounds great but plenty of players have to deal with a problem where they experience a black screen every once in a while but usually during startup. If that is your case, you should definitely follow the rest of the article as we will list out some possible caused for the problem at hand.

What Causes the Risk of Rain Black Screen?

The game is made by an indie developer studio and it’s hard to expect the game to run flawless but the problem appears to be caused only by a few minor issues. One of the problems is related to fullscreen not working properly when V-Sync is turned off.

The error is also sometimes caused by a Windows 10 update which messed up everything but this can be solved by running the game in compatibility mode.

Solution 1: Edit the Preference File as Shown Below

The game has its Prefs.ini file which can be used to simply alter the games settings without actually having to launch the game as its sometimes impossible because of the black screen. The problem often occurs on Windows 10 in fullscreen more so you may have to start the game in windowed mode and switch to fullscreen once is loads.

  1. Start up Steam on your PC, navigate to the Library tab in the Steam window by clicking the Library button at the top of the window, and locate Risk of Rain in the list of games you have in your library.
  2. Right-click on it in your library and choose Properties. Navigate to the Local Files tab and click the Browse Local Files button from the window.

  1. Alternatively, you can still locate the game’s installation folder manually if you simply right-click the game’s shortcut on Desktop or anywhere else and choose Open file location from the context menu.
  2. Anyway, once inside the folder, Right-click the Prefs.ini file and choose to open it with Notepad. If the Notepad icon is default for the file, you can just double-click it. Change the settings in this file to match the ones below:
[Video Options]

scale=2
fullscreen=0
res_index=8

[Gameplay]

diff_level=2
class=1
artifact_active0=0
artifact_active1=0
artifact_active2=0
artifact_active3=0
artifact_active4=0
artifact_active5=0
artifact_active6=0
artifact_active7=0
artifact_active8=0
artifact_active9=0
artifact_active10=0
  1. Use the Ctrl + S key combination to save the changes or click File >> Save from the top navigation menu and exit Notepad. Try relaunching the game to see if the Risk of Rain black screen persists.

Note: The game should now launch in a window whose size will correspond with the resolution you have chosen for the game. Simply use the Alt + Enter key combination once the game fully loads in order to switch to fullscreen. Some users reported seeing the black screen after trying to do that mid-game and here is how to fix it.

  1. Open Steam, navigate to your Library and right-click the Risk of Rain entry to choose Play Game. After the game launches in a window and the Main Menu opens, click on Options.
  2. In the Options screen, click on Audio and video. Next to the V-Sync option, click the Off entry to change it to On and you should no longer experience the black screen!

Solution 2: Change Another Setting

The next setting you might consider changing is the AlternateSyncMethod one. However, this one is located in another file called “options.ini” but it’s supposed to be located in the same folder where you have found the “Prefs.ini” file. Follow the set of steps below in order to try and solve the problem.

  1. Follow the steps 1-3 from the top of the Solution 1 section in order to open the game’s installation folder properly either from Steam or by browsing manually.
  2. Once inside the folder, Right-click the options.ini file and choose to open it with Notepad from the context menu. If the Notepad icon is default for the file, you can just double-click it.
  3. Use the Ctrl + F key combination or click Edit at the top menu and select the Find option from the dropdown menu in order to open the Search box.

  1. Type “”AlternateSyncMethod” in the Find box and change the value next to it from 0 to 1. Use the Ctrl + S key combination in order to save the changes you have made or navigate to File >> Save and exit Notepad.
  2. Try launching the game again in order to check if Risk to Rain 2 displays a black screen after launching.

Solution 3: Run the Game in Compatibility Mode for Windows 8

This is quite a helpful solution as the black screen problem is almost exclusive to Windows 10 users who have installed the Creators update when it was released. Users have tried out this method and it has produced great results so we definitely recommend you don’t skip this method while troubleshooting the problem.

  1. Start up Steam, navigate to the Library tab in the Steam window by clicking the Library button at the top menu, and locate Risk of Rain in the list of games you have in your library.
  2. Right-click on Risk of Rain in your library and choose Properties. Navigate to the Local Files tab and click the Browse Local Files button from the window.

  1. Stil, you can locate the game’s installation folder yourself if you simply right-click the game’s shortcut on Desktop or anywhere else and choose Open file location from the context menu.
  2. Locate the game’s main executable which should be named simply Risk of Rain, right-click on it, and choose Properties from the dropdown menu. Navigate to the Compatibility tab.

  1. Under the “Compatibility mode” section, check the box next to “Run this program in compatibility mode for:” option and choose Windows 8 from the dropdown list.
  2. Relaunch the game on Steam and check to see if the black screen occurs again.

Note: while you are still in the Compatibility tab of the game executable’s Property window, you might as well try to put a tick next to the “Disable full-screen optimizations” entry as several users claim that they were able to solve the problem completely using this method. Don’t forget to Apply the changes!

Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

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Fix: Risk of Rain Black Screen

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