Blank Screen... HELP!!!

Discussion in 'Standoff' started by frostytheplebe, Dec 21, 2014.

  1. frostytheplebe

    frostytheplebe Seventh Part of the Seal

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    Hi guys, I'm running Win 8.1 (I know, I know...). I tried to get standoff to work and can't seem to. I've reinstalled the game, adjusted graphic settings, made sure my graphics cards are up to date, even set the screen to lowest detail, tried different compatibility modes, AND windowed vs. full screen. The game loads, I can hear everything, but the video won't play. It's just a black screen.

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. PopsiclePete

    PopsiclePete Mission programmer

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    Don't worry, Win 8.1 should run the game just fine.

    What is the folder path you installed INTO ?
    What is the folder path you installed the game FROM ?

    IIRC Dundradal had the same issue and I figured out it was because the installer was run from a folder path that was too long ! If that's your case, you can fix it easily by editing the registry key "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Origin Systems\Wing Commander Secret Ops\Installed From:" from whatever long value that is currently there to, say, "D:\". (If you're running a 64-bits Windows Look for "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Origin Systems\Wing Commander Secret Ops").
     
    Christos ESQ and Dundradal like this.
  3. -danr-

    -danr- Rear Admiral

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    Nice to see you posting here again OP.
     
  4. Dundradal

    Dundradal Frog Blast the Vent Core!

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    Yeah, that was not a fun "bug" to find...even if I wasn't looking for it.

    Thankfully Pete, once again, used his Maniac magic to figure out what envelope I'd pushed to break the game!
     
  5. Christos ESQ

    Christos ESQ Spaceman

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    Good Afternoon Brethren et Sister Folk. I Realise it's Been a Couple Years since this Thread was Active but I thought as I'm having the Same Issue I'd inquire here despite the lapse in Duration. I have Scoured the Standoff Forums for Much of this Week whilst my x52 Pro was en route before I even attempted an installation (Getting that Piece of Hardware to Work is Probably Going to be another Issue from what I have Read so far, hark!) Well, the Throttle et Stick arrived Yesterday and Last Night saw the Initial Installation. As I said I read up pretty thoroughly on these forums per both Joystick and Spec concerns so I know it may be a stretch for me even getting this Game Going, however - - that I am hearing Sound at least leads me to Believe that there is Hope.

    Here's what I am working with: 1.6ghz Core i5 (First Gen) a Wee 4GB SDRAM with Intel HD4400 Integrated Graphics (in the Form of a Sony VAIO All in One Set Up)

    I realise the Above is by No Means a Gaming Beast, little did I know when I ordered this Device for my Studio that Two Years Later I would be met with a Hankering for Nostalgia in the Form of Community Made Wing Commander Projects and ordering myself a Modern HOTAS Setup. Tut. But Hey, sometimes you Get an Itch that Just Needs Scratchin'.

    Here is what I have Down Thusfar in Attempts to Get the Game to Load: I have Installed both Secret Ops et Standoff; Tried them in Various Compatibility Modes as well as Tweaking the Options and Resolutions with the Launcher. I have done the Registry Edit workaround that was Suggested by Popsicle Pete and have been attempting the Load the Game from the Folder's .exe file rather than the Launcher itself. I have Uninstalled both Secret Ops et Standoff and then Reinstalled Them trying the Whole Slew of Compatibility Mode Launches (from the Folder) once again after editing the 'Installed From' Registry Entry.

    I am aware that my Integrated Graphics Situation is an Issue, but that I am Hearing the Game launch but not Seeing the Opening Video gives me Some Hope. I have also Updated my Graphics Drivers and am Running Version 1.33 of Standoff.

    Popsicle Pete, Dundradal et al., Please Advise. Over.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2016
  6. PopsiclePete

    PopsiclePete Mission programmer

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    Hi. First, you're talking about registry editing and stuff that I don't know why exactly you tried. You really should just install Secret Ops then Standoff straight from the installers provided on Standoff's website. Just make sure you don't install Secret Ops in the "Program files" folders. You should rather install it to the default "C:\Games" folder. I recommend launching the game from the launcher.

    The only known limitation you might have with your gear is the Intel integrated card, which isn't compatible with some enhanced lighting parameters. In the launcher options, try disabling "Bloom effects (HDR)", and if it still doesn't work disable "Enhanced lighting" altogether.

    So please do the "vanilla" install and then report what exactly goes wrong. Do you get a crash ? A Black square ? Does the game seem to work with sounds but just no video ?
     
  7. Christos ESQ

    Christos ESQ Spaceman

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    Hello Pete.

    Yeah so the Only Registry edit that I performed was the one mentioned above, i.e. altering the registry key in the installed from (the 64 bit version.) Not even sure if it was necessary or not but as it seemed it work for the original poster I figured I would give it a try before I reached out.

    I have installed both Secret Ops et Standoff a few times, each time trying a variety of both Compatibility Modes and Graphic Options via the Launcher.

    I am having the Blank Screen Issue, as in yes.... The Audio for both Secret Ops and Standoff play when I run the Game, however the screen is completely black, no sqaures, no crash, just a Blank Screen with Sound from the Intro Movies of either Game Playing.

    I am not sure how relevant this new information is considering that I am aware the games run on different Engines, however I include the following ne'ertheless:

    I was wanting to try Standoff before I attempted Saga for multiple reasons but one among them was due to my GPU limitations. However even tho' Standoff failed to load properly, I was actually surprised that Saga ran after a 'vanilla' install and at the Highest Resolution Possible and all the Graphic Options set to the Max at 60fps. to my Surprise given my Intel HD 4400 Integrated Graphics situation.

    Like I said, not sure if that helps, but I thought I would include it. Also, In my further research since my initial post one solution I thought I might explore is a using a Glide Wrapper like nGlide to get Standoff to Run with both Sound AND Picture, tut. What say you?

    And thank you for the assistance thus far.
     
  8. Mace

    Mace Vice Admiral

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    Maybe he's talking about the registry entry used for enabling compatibility modes on Windows 2000SP4? That should not be needed on XPSP2 or higher versions. He's using windows 8.1, he has the compatibility setting option from the get go. I ran that OS on a laptop for a few months and had no problem playing standoff.

    I'd also try the other options secretops installer offers(direct3D and Software rendering) to see if you can get the game running at all. Problems might be related to graphics drivers, or even supported monitor resolutions and frequencies. If that is the case, we might be able to use a graphics wrapper to work around your videochip and screen limitations, in a similar way I used to "upgrade" starlancer... (reminds me I still need to grab some footage from that in 1440p and upload it somewhere).

    Pete: Would standoff run with all bells and whistles on a Voodoo3 in terms of compatibility(not speed)?
     
  9. Christos ESQ

    Christos ESQ Spaceman

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    Hiya Mace. I too am Running 8.1 on What is Essentially a Laptop (a Sony VIAO Tap 21 All-in-One) and like I said, when I ordered this thing a Few Years Ago I had no idea that I would be attempting to Play Wing Commander or Any Other Game for that Matter but then again I was not Aware of Saga's Existence at that Time even tho it had been Released Years Prior. But one night with a Glass of Red Wine while I was making Dinner, for a reason unbeknownest to me at the time, I youtube'd the Intro Cinematics for WC2 and the Seed was Planted and the Need was Born, a couple of hours of Research led me to Standoff and Saga (and here we are.)

    Anyhow... It seemed that the registry edit worked for someone with the Similar Blank Screen Woes above tho I was skeptical how simply editing thing in the registry was gonna fix this issue, however as I am not all too versed in how the registry works (I do know it's kind of important, tsk) I thought I would cautiously give it a go.

    I have tried many of the Graphics Options both on Secret Ops and Standoff Launchers with the mindset that if I could get Secret Ops with this Configuration that Standoff would follow suite. No dice as of yet (even with the Direct3D settings) but I am not sure about Software Rendering, I am taking that at this point to be akin the Graphics Wrapper direction?

    I'm gonna give it another go with both the Secret Ops and Standoff from the Launcher and then I'll try to explore what videochip I have. As for Screen Limitations, does that I am able to run WCSaga at the Higest Res possible lend any relevant indicators on that front? Also is there a Compatability Mode (XP SP2, SP3... Windows 7) that the Game prefers? So far they all just seem to Launch the Game with Sound Only and a Blank Screen no atter what mode I run.

    Thanks Again Guys for Your Time.
     
  10. Christos ESQ

    Christos ESQ Spaceman

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    A Bit of Progress...

    So I have managed to get both Secret Ops and Standoff actually running with both Picture and Sound using the Legacy Direct3D Options in the launcher at only the 16 bit Settings (I get an Error Message if I select the 32 bit Option for Standoff.) I am using a Widescreen (16:9) Display and both Programs have Black Bars Flanking the Picture, also is 1024 X 768 the Max Resolution for Standoff?

    I haven't attempted to actual play the Game yet or Calibrate and Bind Keys for my Controller, an X52 Pro... I figured that will take some time, however I was Surprised how Easy it was for WC Saga, after all I read before in forums and various other places I expected more of a hassle per set up given that it is multiple devices (Throttle et Stick, or am I wrong considering it plugs into a single USB port? - - I realise this is potentially a topic for another thread and at present I am still wanting to Get Standoff Running at Max Resolution available and potential sans the Black Bars if possible before I tackle the X52 issues that may arise when I actually fly a mission.) Things like Controller Profiles are at present Foreign to Me and thus far I have only ever used a HOTAS controller on Saga for a Matter of Weeks.

    I am down to attempt the Standoff at this Resolution and with Black Bars if that is all I can do but before I give it a run through I thought I would check and see. I was actually quite surprised that Saga ran at Max Resolution and Fit on my Widescreen Monitor a Couple Weeks ago when actually got it going with a Vanilla install sans any tweaking or workarounds.

    I am still kinda fuzzy on what exactly a Graphics Wrapper does but to my cursory scan of the option, it is a Software Emulation of a particular type of Graphics Card, not sure if it will stretch the image (so to speak) without distortion or potentially allow for Higher Resolution, but I'm into Problem Solving if you guys think it will make my Standoff Experience Superior.

    Gratias Ago Tibi ~
     
  11. PopsiclePete

    PopsiclePete Mission programmer

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    Hi again.

    First, I would like to say that unfortunately, @Mace idea about using a wrapper is not possible with Standoff.

    About the "black bars": you have to understand that Standoff is a mod to Secret Ops, a game that was itself an offspring of Wing Commander Prophecy, a 1996 game. Back in those years widescreen monitors (and TVs ") were a very rare thing, so the engine and game assets were designed for 4:3 (square) monitors only. In order to support widescreen monitors (in a limited way) in Standoff we had to hack the engine and lots of resource files, requiring our OpenGL renderer to implement some of those hacks. So the bottom line is: you have to live with the black bars on the sides with Secret Ops, and you could get rid of them only if you can get OpenGL mode to work.

    If you can get the game to work in Direct3D mode, it means the game is working... the only issue here is compatibility between you Intel onboard card and the OpenGL renderer.
    • Can you tell me what version your Standoff launcher shows in the titlebar ?
    • Can you tell me what is the version of your Intel graphic drivers ? Is it fully up to date ?
    • In order to have OpenGL working with an Intel graphic card, you may have to disable a few settings. Here is an example of safe settings for OpenGL: use fullscreen, disable Boom (HDR), disable Enhanced lighting, set max Anti-aliasing and Max anisotropy to zero (0), and set the z-buffer to 16 bits.

      OpenGL safe settings.jpg
     
  12. PopsiclePete

    PopsiclePete Mission programmer

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  13. Christos ESQ

    Christos ESQ Spaceman

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    'Ave.

    Yeah, so if a Glide Wrapper does not apply here, tis fine by me. I think read over at Hard Light or at the GoG Forums how some one used a Wrapper to get the First FreeSpace (a Series I have yet to Explore) to work in Higher Modern Resolutions. However it was Released a Couple Years Later if recollection serves.

    I am running Standoff Version 1.33; My Intel Graphics Driver is 10.18.10.3355 (Altho' I did perform a Driver Update the Day I Initially Installed Standoff.)

    As for the Black Bars, I figured they may be Here for the Long Haul and that's A Okay, I realise that Secret Ops is an Add On to Prophecy, a Game I Played when it was Initially Released, I actually go all the Way Back to the First One. The Second Release caused me to Upgrade to an i386 IBM Compatible (as they were referred to way back when) and you still had to buy separate programs just to get Voice in the Game (Speech Packs.) I think I had to Mow Lawns for a Few Weeks to Save Up Enough to Afford a SoundBlaster Pro. I go way back, I was so enthusiastic about my Pseudo-Cockpit back then that I used to Wear my Dad's Motorcycle Helmet actually putting down the Visor when I was Breaking to Attack in 'Vengeance of the Kirathi.' Life was So Much Simpler Back Then, Hark!

    Waxing Nostalgic Aside, other than my Few Days of Saga last Week, I hadn't played a Wing Commander Title in Nearly 20 Years. Yet Back to Our Graphics Issue - - More Progress:

    With the Settings in OpenGL that you Offered I am able to get the Game to Launch where the Intro Cinematics nearly Fill my Screen (larger than Twice the Size they were when I initially got the Game to Launch Earlier Today) and the Mission Control Area is now at a Higher Resolution. So... Graphics Wise we May be Close to/at Our Zenith?

    Now let us Hope that the HOTAS Utilization is Smooth Operating per Standoff, Tut.

    And Thanks for the Timely and Effective Response, Pete.
     
  14. PopsiclePete

    PopsiclePete Mission programmer

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    Glad to hear it does work with the lowest - safest- option. Now if you want to re-enable some of the options to make the game look better:
    • Not sure of the method you used to update your graphic drivers, but if you did it any other way (such as using Windows Update), please do install the lastest drivers from Intel (15.36) witch may help a lot.
    • In the Standoff launcher, try re-enabling one graphic option at a time, starting the game to test each option (in that order): max Anti-aliasing and Max anisotropy to 2, enable Enhanced lighting, set the z-buffer to 24 bits. I am pretty sure Boom (HDR) will break the game for you, so don't bother trying to re-enable it.
     
  15. Christos ESQ

    Christos ESQ Spaceman

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    G'Afternoon Pete et Al.

    I think initially I attempted to update the graphics driver thru simply windows update or the control panel, but it was not giving me the option and I could see from the website date that there was indeed a newer driver, so I remember the Day I installed Standoff actually doing in through Intel Directly rather than Windows.

    As for the Other Options, I was Able to get the Game Running with Enhanced Lighting Enabled, however as Soon as I upped the Anti-Aliasing and Max Anisotropy and the Z - Buffer, I returned to the Sound Only Blank Screen when I ran the Game.

    I think I can Manage with These Graphics. Now to sort out my Immersion Issues, the HOTAS setup in the Form of an x52 Pro. I realise there is a Thread for that, as I have probably read it multiple times, from what I read - - It is Doable, but: a Third Party Software like PPJoy or something of that nature is required to get this Thing Working Smoothly for Standoff?

    Altho' I have had a Trio of Joysticks in the past, Flightsticks, Sidewinders, etc... I have yet to have the pleasure of creating a Profile or Performing Key-mapping that wasn't tackled right in the Options Menu of the Games Themselves.

    I'll move Further Inquires per the Controller Topic over to the most Recent (albeit Years Ago) Thread if I require further assistance. Thanks for your Help, Mate.
     
  16. PopsiclePete

    PopsiclePete Mission programmer

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    Prophecy/Secret Ops/Standoff don't have options to remap the joystick buttons. It's not really required though, as the commands are pretty simple.

    To make sure your joystick's rudder and throttle does work, make sure you enable those in the Escape menu within the game.
     
  17. Christos ESQ

    Christos ESQ Spaceman

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    Okay, so me having Screenshots of of the both the Basic and Advanced Key Menus and Mapping Them to a 'Profile' (Standoff.prO) in the Saitek Smart Technology Software is an exercise in futility then? Jajaja. I was actually going to write back here in a moment and ask where to to place this .prO file, I was guessing somewhere in the Secret Ops Folders? [For Future Reference]

    It's All Good, if my Throttle and Joystick Work (despite not Really needing a Throttle per say, as I am usually at Top Speed for Wing Commander Games it seems) I suppose having to use the Keyboard more than Usual in the Middle'll be fine, Just like the Old Days, pre-Throttle as a Separate Device, Tsk.
     
  18. PopsiclePete

    PopsiclePete Mission programmer

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    Not saying it's futile, I said it's "not really required". You can map the buttons if that suits you.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2016
  19. Sylvester

    Sylvester Vice Admiral

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    I'm having the same black screen issue. I've checked the compatibility settings and edited the "installed from" key as suggested above. I can get the graphics to load with Direct3D just fine but it will only play audio in OpenGL mode. Same results if I run it windowed or fullscreen. System specs below:

    Windows 10
    Intel Core i7
    GeForce GTX 960M graphics card

    EDIT: Okay - so I started applying settings individually - looks like AA won't work properly work with my card. I can max out everything else. Weird eh - my brand new laptop with an actual card can't run AA - but that's not too bad a sacrifice to get a game ultimately built on 20 year old software to work.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2017

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