I recently installed Halo: Combat Evolved and patched it to version 1.09. When I run it, it plays the logo videos fine but then when it gets to the menu, it plays only the music on a black screen. Is there a compatibility problem with my system?

My specs:

  • Windows 7 Professional x64
  • Intel Core i3-3110m 2.4Ghz
  • Intel HD Graphics 4000
  • 8 GB DDR3 RAM

Try installing it in the default directory (don't pick somewhere else). I tried every tweak I could find on the net, and nothing was working. Then I decided to go with the default directory (C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Games\Halo) and voila, none of the other stuff (compatibility, etc.) was necessary -- it worked fine.

  • This also worked for Gears of War (original). – user101016 Sep 21 '15 at 8:44

I guess the simple thing to check would be to make sure your graphics drivers are up to date, but assuming that doesn't help, There are two solutions I can think of that might work

Running the game in compatibility mode

  • Navigate to the .exe file in the install location.
  • Right-click the shortcut, and click 'Properties'
  • Click the Compatibility Tab
  • Check the box that says Run this program in compatibility mode for: and select Windows XP (Service Pack 3)

You can also try Run the Program as an Administrator as well.

Killing explorer before running the game

The other thing I sometimes find when running these old games in Windows 7/8, is that the taskbar seems to stuff them up somehow. You can also try killing explorer.exe before starting the game.

I usually wrap the game's executable in a batch file that kills explorer, starts the game, and waits for it to finish, before starting explorer again. Here are the commands. Put these in a .bat file in the Halo install directory, and run this to launch the game:

@echo off
taskkill /f /IM explorer.exe
start /WAIT <halo executable name>.exe
start explorer.exe
  • 2
    Alternatively, instead of start /WAIT <halo executable name>.exe you can also do start /WAIT %1, which will allow you to drag & drop any executable onto the batch file. That way, you don't have to make a copy for each and every .exe – Nolonar May 31 '13 at 9:31

protected by Community Sep 27 at 16:54

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count).

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.