PC freezes during game then monitor won't display desktop properly.

  AleggsMac 23:17 26 Oct 2012

Hi everyone! I hope somebody can help me with this issue as I've tried everything I can under my very limited computer knowledge (could call it no-ledge). I recently installed Tomb Raider Legend on my new PC. I managed to play it for a while with no problems, until it froze. The game freezes for a split second, all sound from the game stops, and then the PC monitor displays a 'no signal' message. After this it switches from being on with a black screen, to being off, multiple times. Occasionally it displays small parts of the desktop, including the 'speed' dials that show the CPU and RAM. It once displayed the message box alerting me to the game not responding, which I managed to click 'End now'. If I press ctrl, alt + delete, the monitor displays the blue screen that follows without any problems. When I click onto 'Start Task Manager' it takes me back to the on/off black screen, with some parts of the desktop displayed. Normally after this I force a hard shut down using the button on the tower (obviously), and reboot the PC as there seems no way out of the flickering screen. It starts up offering me a choice of booting it into safe mode. If I choose normal, it boots up fine and all I have to do is re-install my internet adapter. If I try play the game again, within about 30 minutes the game glitches again. Once the glitching took me to the blue error screen and the PC restarted itself. I would like to know why this may be happening, and what I can do to fix it as it's getting really annoying.

So far I have deleted any programs I installed since re-installing the PC in September, apart from the game. My PC is about a year old, and as I use it for university only, it spent the summer boxed up at home whilst I waited to be able to move into my new student accommodation. It was boxed up as it was bought, polystyrene and all, and kept in the garage, protected from dust and damp. This is the only glitch I have had so far with this PC, and if you need any more specifications than I can give, then I will try and find them out for you. I am completely illiterate in most PC jargon, so if explanations can be as simplified as possible, this would be very helpful. I have run various virus scans, defragmented the PC, cleared up files and all sorts of things. I have also run a stability test through the NVIDIA control panel, which was clear in 40 checks (can't remember the proper terminology, sorry!). I've done all I know to do, and I've searched online for help, but so many forum posts I've seen have been too confusing for me to understand and follow.

I know I sound completely dumb right now, but help would be appreciated. Sorry that this is long-winded, but I thought that giving as much detail as possible right away would lead to a faster solution.

The spec. I can give right now is: Model: Acer Aspire X1420 (I think, says it on the tower?) Operating System: Windows 7 Home-Premium 64-bit Processor: AMD Athalin IIX2 220 dual-core processor Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 6150SE graphics up to 1919MB Hard drive: 1TB Memory: 4GB DDR3 Memory Optical Drive: DVD-Super Multi Drive Card Reader: Multi-in-1 Media Card Reader.

I only have this game and Sims 3 installed on my PC, and no other big memory programs. I don't have many photos, but do have quite a bit of music. The PC is well ventilated and kept on a desk (I read a forum asking about the ventilation of the PC and susceptibility to dust / pet hair). The game has posed no problems on my home PC which I use when not at uni or when this PC is boxed up.

Hope someone can help, I'll be so thankful if you can.

  nickf 23:56 26 Oct 2012

First stop would be to check on the game to make sure your PC meets the requirements to run game correctly . Have you tried running game at a lower setting ? also check the graphics card driver , and PLEASE , DONT BOOT OFF with power switch unless absolute LAST resort . Ctrl, alt delete and shut down , Windows will get very upset with you , and start sulking !

  AleggsMac 13:53 28 Oct 2012

The hard shut off is a necessoty unfortunately, only the blue screen which appears after pressing ctrl alt and delete is visible, the moment I try and open task manager, it goes back to the black screen. There's no shut down option on the blue screen either.

The game specifies the following: Recommended requirements - CPU: Pentium 4.2Ghz or Athalon XP equivalent. RAM: 512MB Graphics: 100% Direct X 9.0c compatible, 256MB 3D Accelerated Card (Nvidia GeForce 5900 / ATi 9800XT) Sound: Microsoft Windows 200 / XP compatible sound card (100% Direct X9.0c compatible) DVD Rom: 8 speed DVD-Rom drive or faster Hard Drive: 9.9GB Free disk space.

Does this seem like it should be able to run on my PC? I've searched, but can't find out if my current graphics card is better than the one recommended or not. A friend of mine who is a massive gamer noted it was a good graphics card not long after I had bought it, so I'm assuming it's good enough. I have more than enough disk space and RAM free, and I have also changed the DEP to allow the game to run. Attempted to play it again, but the same problem occured after about 30 minutes, except instead of flashing on and off, the monitor went into sleep mode.

I've no idea how to run the game at a lower setting, I think I can change the graphics on it or the display settings; not sure I can fiddle about with much though, except maybe turning off some effects in the game.

  nickf 15:15 28 Oct 2012

Should be able to change graphics quality in the game , normally in options menu. I know i sounds silly and obvious , but have you checked the cable to your monitor is secure ? Also what kind of cable are you using ? . eg VGA , hdmi or dvi . What card are you using ? And have you checked the driver for it ?

  AleggsMac 01:22 30 Oct 2012

Hi, I have lowered the graphics settings somewhat, but I believe the glitch may have been with the game itself. I found a link on a website relating to the game that analysed your computer to see if it was compatible. I ran the analyser and it said all was fine for running the game. I then found a tech-help section of the website where they had two patches available for download. I downloaded them, and since then the game has worked fine for as long as I've played it. Thanks for your help anyway, seems I didn't search hard enough for solutions, as it was there all along!

  nickf 07:50 30 Oct 2012

Shuld of thought of that myself ! Good luck an happy gaming

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