Today, I’d like to zero in on a very specific problem I’ve been having with Star Wars: The Old Republic.It’s an old problem, but one for which there still doesn’t seem to exist any clear solution. Occasionally, the game tends to just…bork your system. As in, you’re struck with the dreaded Blue Screen of Death while playing. I set out to figure out what the problem was, and I succeeded. Well…sort of.
I started playing The Old Republic some time ago – at least a few years, if memory serves. Not long after I started, I found myself moving on to other things. Recently – at the insistence of my significant other – I renewed my subscription to the game. Now armed with a sweet gaming rig, I figured I could play to my heart’s content. Apparently, I was wrong. Not long after I started playing, I encountered my first blue-screen of death – a memory fault.
Desperately hoping it was a one-time thing, I continued playing. As it turns out, it wasn’t. They didn’t happen with any sort of frequency, and struck me at seemingly random times. Once I got hit while in the character select screen, another time it was while fighting some foes in an instance, and then a third while on Nar Shadda. Every time, the error was identical – straight down to the code. I browsed forums, poring over page after page of issues for an answer – I wasn’t the only one to have this problem, after all, and it’s not like it was unprecedented – the game was giving me a few problems right from the start; attempting to install the game on my desktop without specifically granting it admin access caused my system to lock up.
I went through all the recommended routines. I stress-tested every piece of hardware on my computer. I ran the full gamut of tests with memtest86+. I re-installed SWTOR, tested my hard drive, and scanned for file corruption or errors. Nothing came up. Drivers seemed not to be the problem, either. I was stumped. Then I read a curious thread on the Star Wars forum, about an issue involving the user’s antivirus software.
I figured it was worth a try – I disabled my antivirus (and closed my web browser, naturally) while playing SWTOR. For all intents and purposes, the problem seemed to be solved. My game was once more working as intended, and I could play to my heart’s content. So…what’s the lesson in all this?
Simply this: when troubleshooting problems with a game, sometimes the most obvious solution is the best one. Try that first, before you go off and spend hours of your time on tests.