Experimental Builds no longer launching in Windows 7

I know at one point I was able to launch the Experimental builds, but since at least 0.C-4223 up to current 0.C-4360 it is no longer launching. Double-click EXE, wheel spins, nothing happens.

I do not use the graphical experimental, but the console version instead. I have not modified any of the configuration files before trying to launch. And based on an earlier thread regarding someone else unable to launch it from two years ago - yes, I am extracting the .zip file to a new directory and retaining subdirectories.

Task manger shows not one, but three copies of the cataclysm exe running, each with 116k of working memory. I am not running the graphical version, but have downloaded that to try it. Catalcysm-tiles.exe shows similar, but not exactly identical behavior - rather than three copies, I only have one copy running, still at 116k of working memory.

Digging through my event logs shows nothing of note. Oddly, I am not able to kill the process either. Taskmanager and pskill both claim to have stopped the process, but nothing happens. As far as I am aware, my copy of windows is running up to date patches.

The stable version works fine. That said, having seen the experimental features, I’d rather be playing that.

Any ideas where I can start digging to figure out the cause of the problem? If it crashed or gave me something to work with in a log file I’d at least have an idea as to where to start, but right now - no clue.

Not all windows 7 systems are having this problem, I can load the game without issue. There has to be something else at work.

You using virus protection?

I think it was macafee that doesnt like cdda. iirc you had to add it as an exception

I’ve heard reports of avast screwing up when doing its quarantine as well. If you’re running antivirus and suddenly have launch problems, check that.

In some windows 7 systems a school, I have to run the game in 256 colors to get it to work. On my laptop, it works fine. Both are windows 7 3-bit systems. I guess it depends on the graphics card if 256 colors fixes it?

If you have any problems related to display like this, try toggling the software rendering option.

That may be it. Disabled Avast, working fine.


I know AV software can be a pain in the ass, but consider this. When you turn off the AV you are using just to play a game, you are still vulnerable to anything if you are online. So unplug or disconnect your machine before you do this. Still a bad idea though, as you wouldn’t know if anything else is going on in your machine when the game is going.

It isn’t paranoia either. The nasty part of a virus is that most of them don’t WANT to be found, duh!

There’s no need to completely turn off AV software in any case. Any good AV software includes the ability to add exceptions for a particular executable.