Crusader Kings III Crashing at Startup, Won’t Launch, or Lags with FPS drops: Fix


Crusader Kings III is one of the latest grand strategy-based wargames that’s developed by Paradox Development Studio and published by Paradox Interactive. The game is all set in the Middle Ages which is a sequel to Crusader Kings & Crusader Kings II. The third-part was first announced at PDXCon 2019 & released in September 2020. It’s available for Microsoft Windows, Linux, macOS, Macintosh OS platforms. However, some of the unfortunate PC players have started reporting that the Crusader Kings III game is literally Crashing at Startup, Won’t Launch, or having Lags with FPS drops.

Now, if you’re also one of the Windows users and experiencing the same problem with your system then this troubleshooting guide is only for you. Here we’ve shared all the possible workarounds in order to easily resolve these mentioned issues. Whereas plenty of players may also experience some other bugs or errors like the black screen of death, other graphical glitches, sound problems, game stuck at the downloading or updating process, the game won’t close, can’t connect to servers, and more.

As most of these issues are quite common and can happen with almost any Windows version games, check out the fixing guide below. However, there are some other important things you need to know before jumping into the steps. So, let’s take a look.

Crusader Kings III Crashing at Startup, Won't Launch, or Lags with FPS drops: Fix


Why Does Crusader Kings III Keep Crashing?

It can possible that there are multiple reasons behind the crashing of Crusader Kings III game on your Windows machine during startup or somewhere in the gameplay. Therefore, you should take a quick look at some of the possible reasons below that needs to fixed.

  • Maybe your PC/Laptop configuration isn’t compatible with the system requirements of the game. If you haven’t checked the game requirements yet, then check below.
  • Maybe the game files are missing or corrupted.
  • An outdated Windows OS or graphics driver version can be the issue.
  • The DirectX version isn’t updated.
  • Either the game or the game client isn’t updated.
  • There may be some apps running in the background that can cause high CPU/Memory usage.
  • Your Antivirus program or Windows Firewall can also prevent the game to run properly.

Minimum System Requirements:

  • Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system
  • OS: Windows 8.1 64 bit or Windows 10 Home 64 bit
  • Processor: Intel iCore i5-750 or Intel iCore i3-2120, or AMD Phenom II X6 1055T
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 460 (1 GB), or AMD Radeon R7 260X (2 GB) or AMD Radeon HD 6970 (2 GB), or Intel Iris Pro 580
  • Storage: 8 GB available space

Recommended System Requirements:

  • Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system
  • OS: Windows 10 Home 64 bit
  • Processor: Intel iCore i5- 4670K or AMD Ryzen 5 2400G
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 (4 GB)
  • Storage: 8 GB available space

Crusader Kings III Crashing at Startup, Won’t Launch, or Lags with FPS drops: Fix

Now, without wasting any more time, let’s jump into the steps below. Keep in mind that both the Nvidia and AMD graphics drivers are well optimized for the Crusader Kings III game. So, if in case, you haven’t updated your graphics driver yet, do this first.

1. Update Graphics Drivers

If you’re using the Nvidia graphics card then update the GeForce Experience app on your PC from the Nvidia official site here. But if you’re using the AMD graphics card on your system, then update the latest AMD Drivers from here.

2. Disable Steam Overlay

  • Open Steam on your Windows.
  • Head over to the Settings > Click on the In-Game option.
  • Click on the checkbox to disable “Enable the Steam Overlay while in-game“.
  • Once the checkbox mark is removed, click on OK.

3. Adjust Discord Settings

  • Launch Discord > Click on User Settings.
  • Select Voice & Video from the left sidebar.
  • Scroll down a bit and click on the Advanced.
  • Next, disable OpenH264 Video Codec provided by Cisco System, Inc.
  • Then disable Enable Quality of Service High Packet Priority.
  • Now, go to Overlay.
  • You can also turn off the in-game overlay.
  • Next, head over to Appearance.
  • Go to Advanced.
  • Disable Hardware Acceleration.
  • Once done, restart the system.

4. Adjust Nvidia Control Panel Settings

  • Click on Adjust image settings with preview under 3D settings.
  • Select Use the advanced 3D image settings.
  • Next, launch the Nvidia Control Panel.
  • Click on Manage 3D settings > Go to Global Settings.
  • Additionally, you can also adjust some of the other options:
    • Disable Image Sharpening
    • Enable Threaded Optimization
    • Use Maximum Performance for Power Management
    • Turn off Low Latency Mode
    • Set Texture Filtering Quality to Performance mode

5. Change AMD Control Panel Settings

  • Go to Global Graphics.
    • Turn off Radeon Anti-Lag
    • Turn off Radeon Boost
    • Use Application settings for Anti-Aliasing Mode
    • Set Anti-aliasing Method to Multi-sampling
    • Turn off Morphological Filtering
    • Disable Image Sharpening
    • Turn off Anisotropic Filtering
    • Use Performance mode for Texture Filtering Quality
    • You can also enable Surface Format Optimization
    • AMD Optimization for the Tesselation Mode
    • Wait for V-sync – Turn it off
    • Use AMD optimization for the Shader Cache
    • Disable OpenGL Triple Buffering
    • Turn off Maximum Tesselation Level
    • Set Graphics for the GPU Workload
    • Turn off the Radeon Chill
    • Disable Frame Rate Target Control

6. Verify Game Files via Steam

Crusader Kings III gamers on Steam client can follow the below steps:

  • Open the Steam Library by logging into the account
  • You can find the Crusader Kings III game there
  • Right-click on the game and click on Properties
  • Select the Local Files tab
  • Then click on Verify Integrity of game files
  • Wait for the process and then restart the game to check whether the issue has been fixed or not

7. Uninstall Recent Windows 10 Update

A couple of days ago, Microsoft has released a new update for Windows 10 with KB4535996. So, this particular cumulative update for Windows 10 is quite buggy and causing so many errors or problems.

  • Go to Start menu > Click on Settings
  • Next, go to Update and Security
  • Click on View update history
  • Now, if you can see that there is an update having KB4535996 has been already installed. Make sure to uninstall it.
  • Here you will see Uninstall updates option on the top of the page.
  • Click on it and select the mentioned cumulative update version.
  • Right-click on it > Select Uninstall.
  • It may take some time to delete that update and your system may restart automatically.
  • Have some patience and you can also manually reboot your Windows PC (if required).

8. Remove Temporary Files

  • Press Windows key + R on your keyboard to open the RUN program.
  • Now, type %temp% and press enter.
  • You will get a bunch of temporary files on a page.
  • Select all files by pressing Ctrl + A on the keyboard.
    Next, press Shift + Delete on the keyboard to remove all the files.
  • Some times some of the temporary files can’t be deleted. So, leave them as it is and close it.

9. Set Default CPU and Graphics Speed

As most of the users always want to use ultra-high performance from the CPU and GPU from the very first day. So, most of the users either buy an overclocked version or manually increased the overclocking speed. So, if you’ve also overclocked your GPU speed and after doing that you’re experiencing bottleneck or lagging or crashing related issues, just set it to default mode.


You can also use the MSI Afterburner tool or Zotac firestorm application in order to lower the clocking speed. Once done, you can run the Crusader Kings III game to check whether it’s crashing at startup or not.

That’s it. We hope this guide was useful to you. You can comment below for any queries.

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