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I can play and host other maps just fine, but whenever I try to play the 2015 Halloween event, Invasion, the map loads to about 80% and then hl2.exe crashes.

I made sure to have enough free RAM and HDD space, and verified my cache.

64-bit Windows 7 Home Premium on Intel i5 750 @2.67GHz
NVIDIA GeForce GT 220 (driver 9.18.13.4181) OpenGL 3.3
Primary Display Resolution: 1680 x 1050
Primary VRAM: 1024 MB
RAM: 12279 MB
Total Hard Disk Space Available: 9,52 GB

Despite my solutions below, 2fort Invasion still crashes while sending client info with one loading bar left. Watergate, Probed, and Byre work.

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UPDATE 2: Using launch option -dx98 in Steam's game properties, I was able to play ctf_2fort_invasion! Trying with CRLF line endings in autoexec.cfg failed, as did 1440x900. Launch option -condebug only shows Redownloading all lightmaps as last line, and lately some warnings:

*** Encountered VTF file with an invalid minor version!
*** Encountered VTF file with an invalid full header!
Error reading texture header "materials/vgui/resource/mic_meter_live.vtf"

I revalidated my local TF2 files: no errors.

UPDATE: Without a CR character in autoexec.cfg, Watergate works fine in high res! Open it in Notepad++ or other decent editor, and convert line endings to LF-only ("Unix-style").

Old solution:

I first renamed C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Team Fortress 2\tf\cfg\autoexec.cfg to autoexec.cfg.2014. This allowed me to auto-join an Invasion multiplayer arena game. It never got enough players, so I can't verify actual gameplay, but at least the map loaded fully. Other Invasion game modes still had the same crashing problem, though.

I then changed my video resolution from 1440x900 to 1280x768. That did the trick, and I spent a few hours playing without any technical issue.

Working TF2 Invasion resolution

This was my autoexec.cfg, with CRLF on line 1:

tf_bot_quota 4; tf_bot_quota_mode fill
bind "F9" "sv_cheats 1; echo Generating navigation data...; nav_generate; sv_cheats 0"

Trying to play with this cfg and lower res works on Byre arena, but crashes while loading the Watergate player destruction map.

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  • Is there something in your 2014 config specifically that caused the crash? Did you try Verifying the Integrity of the Game Cache through Steam?
    – Robotnik
    Oct 11, 2015 at 0:14
  • I've updated my posts, and will try again with the cfg. Oct 11, 2015 at 0:17
  • It's definitely either one that causes problems. Oct 11, 2015 at 0:23
  • Weird that the CR char would cause problems.
    – Robotnik
    Oct 11, 2015 at 1:31
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    On a related note, the other new Halloween maps stopped crashing when i moved a custom hud+model to C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Team Fortress 2\tf\custom\disabled Nov 8, 2015 at 22:04

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