One of the most frequently seen issues with the Dead Space series is the Dead Space could not initialize display hardware issue. If you have this issue, when you start the game you’ll likely get an Error popup with the following message:
Could not initialize display hardware. Please restart Dead Space
This issue is often caused by having an unsupported resolution for your system/monitor configuration. There are a few possible solutions to this issue that you can try below (ordered by success rate):
- Manually edit your resolution in settings.txt. The specific properties you want to edit are:
Window.Height = 1080
Window.Width = 1920
I would recommend you try a very small resolution to start e.g.
Window.Height = 480
Window.Width = 640
Your settings.txt file will be located in:
C:\Users\<YOUR USER>\AppData\Local\Electronic Arts\<DEAD SPACE TITLE>\settings.txt
NOTE: AppData is a hidden folder. You’ll have to enable show hidden folders to see it.
NOTE: If you don’t have this settings file, you can use this one to start.
- Force the game to run in windowed mode. While this is not an ideal solution, it is another option, and can help you at least get the game started so you can try to narrow down the exact settings that will work for you. To force the game to run in windowed mode, in your settings.txt file set the Window.Fullscreen property to false AKA:
Window.Fullscreen = false
- Reinstall video drivers
- Reinstall DirectX. Steps on how to reinstall DirectX can be found here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/179113
- Try some of the solutions from the Dead Space has stopped working post. While these solutions are not specific to the “could not initialize display hardware” issue, they cover a wide range of potential crash causes and are worth trying if you’ve run out of ideas.
If you’ve followed the above steps and are still experiencing the Dead Space could not initialize display hardware issue, please post in the comments below. To increase your chances of a solution being found include as much detail as possible (which version of the game you’re running, what operating system you have, what video card you have and steps to reproduce the issue). Screenshots are also very useful!