How to Fix Steam Games Not Launching Issue in Windows?

When Steam refuses to launch the game, it is mostly due to not having required permissions on your Steam application. When Steam does not have appropriate permissions, it cannot launch the game. However, if that’s not the case, then you may have corruption in your extracted game files, causing this issue.

We have mentioned all the solutions from basic to advanced. Kindly follow most of them to fix your issue.

1. Verify the Integrity Of Game Files

Your Steam game won’t launch If you have some corrupted crucial files that allow that game to launch properly. If that’s the case, you will have to restore or repair them by using the Verify integrity of game files option in Steam. Verify integrity of game files restores corrupted game files, which can fix the issue.

To do so, follow the steps:

  1. Open Steam, go to Library.
  2. Right-click the game that is not opening, and select Properties.
  3. Go to Local Files and click Verify integrity of game files.
  4. Wait for the verification to be finished. It can take some time, so be patient.
  5. Once done, launch the game to see the result.

2. Run the Steam and Game as an administrator

Running a program with administrator privileges allows it to have access to all required files. It also helps bypass firewall interference if it is blocking the program’s executable file from running.

In simple words, if Steam or the game does not have the required permissions to access the redistributable files, you will encounter this issue. So try running the Steam and game as an administrator by following the steps:

  1. Right-click the Steam shortcut from the desktop and select Open file location or go to the Steam application directory and right-click on it.
  2. Now select Properties, then go to Compatibility.
  3. Tick Run this program as an administrator.
  4. Finally, click Apply and click OK.
  5. Once done, repeat this whole process with the executable game file, which you can find in your game directory.
  6. To open the game directory, right-click the game from your Steam library, hover Manage and click Browse local files. Now configure the game executable file to open with administrator permissions.

3. Clear Steam appcache

Cache files are used to improve the User Experience (UX) because they store data that users frequently access. As a result, the application doesn’t need to request the server, as it takes time to load data from the server.

However, if the cache files get corrupted, the application will load the corrupted data, which can result in this issue. Therefore, try clearing the Steam appcache by using the following steps:

Before applying the following steps, make sure that Steam is not running in the background.
  1. Right-click the Steam shortcut, select Open file location, or go to the Steam application directory.
  2. Here Select the appcache folder and press Delete on your keyboard.
  3. Once you have deleted the folder, launch Steam to re-create the appcache folder.
  4. Once done, open Steam and launch the game to check if the issue is fixed or not.

4. Update your Windows

If your Windows is outdated, you should consider updating your Windows before trying out other methods. Having updated Windows means you have the latest security features that are compatible with the latest games and applications. This helps prevent crashes, freezes, and not launching issues on games and applications.

So if you don’t have a habit of updating Windows, try it, as it often fixes this type of issue.

  1. To update your Windows, click Start Menu, and search for Check for updates.
  2. Open the Windows update settings, and click Check for updates if there are no updates available.
  3. Now click Download and Install.
  4. Once the updates are downloaded, restart your computer to install the update.
  5. Once done, now try launching the game to see if it is launching. If not, follow other methods.

5. Update Your System drivers

You may have outdated system drivers on your system, preventing the game from launching. If that’s the case, you need to update your drivers to the latest versions.

For that, we recommend you download the drivers from the manufacturer’s site because you will only find compatible drivers on your manufacturer’s site.

  1. To download the drivers, you should know the model number of your motherboard. For that, right-click the Start Menu and select Run to open it.
  2. Now enter the msinfo32 in the search box and click OK.
  3. Copy the BaseBoard Product.
  4. Go to the motherboard or laptop manufacturer’s site and search for the product by pasting the copied BaseBoard Product.
  5. Now download all the system drivers except your bios, such as the audio and graphics driver.
  6. Once you have downloaded the drivers, double-click on them one by one to install them.
  7. Once done, restart your laptop. If you have a computer, you should separately download the graphics driver as well. For that, just navigate to your graphics card manufacturer’s site. Download the graphics driver and install it on your PC.

6. Perform a clean boot

A clean boot is a troubleshooting utility that disables the non-essential software that runs in the background. It is used to determine which background application or third-party service is interfering and preventing the game or application from running.

To do so, follow the steps:

  1. Right-click the Start Menu and select Run to open Run Window.
  2. Type msconfig in the search box and hit Enter to launch System Configuration Window.
  3. Here choose Selective Startup the go to Services.
  4. Tick Hile all Microsoft Services and click Disable All.
  5. Now click Apply and go to Startup from the top bar.
  6. Click Open Task Manager, here right-click the third-party applications one by one and select Disable. This will prevent third-party applications from running with Windows.
  7. Once you disabled all of them, restart your system and try launching the Steam game.

7. Disable Antivirus Software Temporary

If you use any third-party antivirus software rather than Windows Defender, it may be interfering with the Steam game by blocking the executable file. Hence, try disabling the antivirus software temporarily by following the steps:

The following steps may vary if you use antivirus software, unlike Avast antivirus software.

  1. Right-click the antivirus icon from the system tray.
  2. Hover Avast Shield Control and click Disable permanently or Disable for 10 minutes.
  3. Once done, open the game to check if it is launching or not.

8. Clear the Steam appdata files

Clear the Steam appdata files means you are going to remove all the data, such as account settings, cache files, configuration files, local storage, session storage, and more. It is possible that Steam is not able to launch the game due to corrupted configuration files. Therefore, try clearing the Steam appdata files by using the following steps.

  1. Hold the Windows key + and press R to open Run Window.
  2. Enter appdata and hit Enter to open the folder.
  3. Navigate to the Local folder, then select the Steam folder from the list.
  4. Hold the Shift Key and right-click the Steam folder.
  5. Then select Delete to remove the folder.
  6. Once done, launch the game to see if the issue persists.

9. Reinstall Steam and game

If the Steam game is still not launching, you can try reinstalling Steam because it is possible that your Steam files are corrupted. However, if reinstalling Steam does not work, try reinstalling the game as well, as we have tried all the solutions to fix this issue, but unfortunately, none of them worked.

  1. To reinstall Steam, click Start Menu and type Steam.
  2. Right-click Steam and click Uninstall. This will take you to the control panel programs and features.
  3. Double-click Steam and follow the remaining steps to uninstall Steam.
  4. Once done, download and install Steam. Then go to Library, click Install, then select your game library to discover the existing files of the game to install.
  5. Once done, try launching the game. If the issue persists, then your game files can be corrupted, which did not repair when you verified their files. Hence, try reinstalling the game.

Steam Game Won't Launch- FAQs

Why is my Steam game not launching on Windows?

Your Steam game won’t launch if there are corrupted files in your Steam game files. If that’s the case, you will have to repair them by using the option Verify integrity of game files.

How do I Fix the Steam game won’t launch issue?

Open Steam, go to Library, right-click the game that is not launching, select Properties, go to Local Files, and click Verify the integrity of game files.


Kamil Anwar

Kamil is a certified MCITP, CCNA (W), CCNA (S) and a former British Computer Society Member with over 9 years of experience Configuring, Deploying and Managing Switches, Firewalls and Domain Controllers also an old-school still active on FreeNode.