The Ascent – Crashing at startup – Game won’t launch – How to fix

The Ascent crashing and won’t launch – The Ascent is now available on PC and the consoles from Microsoft. But there is a problem. The game is crashing for a lot of PC users. And for some, it won’t even launch. Here is a troubleshooting guide that would help you fix some errors.

The Ascent – Crashing at startup – Game won’t launch – How to fix

I don’t know about you, but I was waiting for the release of The Ascent ever since I saw the trailer back in 2020. The game looked extremely impressive back then. And now that it is finally here, I am going to enjoy it with my friends as much as I can. This game has been developed by Neon Giant. They are an indie studio and this is their first game. But I have to say, they have done a tremendous job. So far, The Ascent has managed to get great reviews, and the players are also enjoying the title.

The game is a twin-sticked shooter and is presented from a top-down view overlooking the environment. The Ascent includes the ability to aim both high and low on enemy targets. This allows the player(s) to differentiate between shooting enemies closer or further away. It also acts as the cover system, as the player can aim at enemies over the top of props in the environment. The character’s appearance is fully customizable, and you can even give your character new abilities and skill by augmenting it with cyberware upgrades.

The information given above should be enough for you to get a basic idea of the game. Now, let’s talk about how the game performs on the PC or Windows platform. Since we saw a lot of players complaining about crashes and launch issues on the forums. We decided to put up a guide mentioning some steps to fix them.

Can your PC handle The Ascent?

If you haven’t checked the requirements of the game yet, then let me tell you, The Ascent is one of the most demanding titles released in 2021. Take a look at the official system requirements.

# MINIMUM RECOMMENDED
Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system
OS Windows 10 x64 Windows 10 x64
PROCESSOR Intel Core i5-3470 (4 * 3200) or equivalent / AMD FX-8350 (4 * 4000) or equivalent Intel Core i9-9900k (8 * 3600) or equivalent /AMD Ryzen 7 3700X (8 * 3600) or equivalent
MEMORY 8 GB RAM 16 GB RAM
GRAPHICS GeForce GTX 660 (2048 MB) / Radeon R9 390X (8192 MB) Geforce RTX 2080 (8192 MB) / Radeon RX 6800 XT (16384 MB)
STORAGE 35 GB available space 35 GB available space
ADDITIONAL NOTES Minimum Specification listed above allows gameplay experience close to 30 FPS on average while using 1080p resolution and lowest settings Recommended Specification listed above allows gameplay experience close to 60 FPS on average while using 1080p resolution and overall “High” settings

This is why I keep on recommending on my articles that, you should always check the system requirements before you buy your games. People often speculate that games that have a top-down view are not demanding. Sadly, that is not the case with The Ascent. You need a Ryzen 5 3700x paired with a RTX 2080 and 16 GB ram, to play the game at 1080p 60 fps on ‘High’ settings. And the ‘Minimum’ specifications would only allow you to play the game at 1080p 30 fps on the lowest settings. This should clear things up in my opinion.

Windows 10 64-bit is required to play The Ascent

If you are trying to launch the game on Windows 7 or 8.1, then there is no point reading this guide as The Ascent only supports Windows 10, that too, 64-bit only. This not something that I am saying. It is something that has been specifically mentioned on the Steam page of The Ascent.

The Ascent - Official System Requirements

Graphics Drivers

Start by updating your graphics drivers. I get a lot of comments saying that updating drivers don’t do anything. Trust me, updating graphics drivers is one of the best practices in PC gaming.

If you are an Nvidia user, then you can directly update your driver from the Geforce Experience application. You can also download the driver directly from the link below.

If you are an AMD user, then you can find the latest Adrenaline driver from the link given below. Adrenalin 21.7.2 Optional is the version you need to download. It is an optional driver, but that shouldn’t cause any problem.

Play the game on DirectX 11

The DirectX 12 mode in The Ascent is not stable at the moment. If you do not plan to use Ray-tracing, then I would advise you to play the game on DirectX 11 until a patch comes out.

Disable Anti-virus or add The Ascent on the Exception list

Either try disabling your Anti-Virus software temporarily and then run The Ascent, or add exceptions for The Ascent in your Anti-virus configuration.

And why should you do this? Well, some anti-virus software hook very deep into user systems and can affect disk and network operations, which can cause crashes in games. Some games also use copy protection technology that can appear as malicious software to an AV scanner, resulting in potential false-positive alerts.

Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable

If you are getting errors like “vcruntime140_1.dll missing” or “MSVCP140.dll was not found”. The go ahead and install the latest version of Visual C++ redistributable, as there’s a chance it hasn’t been installed correctly.

Repair the game if you are playing it on the Xbox app

If you are playing the game on Steam, then you should probably know how to repair it on Steam. Library > Right-click on The Ascent > Properties > Local Files > Verify. But what about people who have bought the game on the Xbox app?

If you are a Game Pass for PC user, then here is how to repair your game:

  • Go to your Windows Settings
  • Select Apps > Apps & features
  • Look for The Ascent from the app list
  • Click on The Ascent once you find it (Just use sort by : Install date)
  • Select Advanced options
  • Click on Repair
  • Wait until the process is completed
  • Restart the Xbox app

Repairing The Ascent for Xbox app users

Extras stuff you can try

Here are some extra things you can do just to be sure:

  • Terminate overclocking applications, and run your GPU and CPU at stock speeds
  • Disable Steam overlay or other overlays
  • Run the .exe file of The Ascent as admin directly from the installation folder, instead of launching the game via Steam [Not for Xbox app users]
  • Re-install in a different location [The last thing you should try]

One thing you have to keep in mind, Neon Giant is an indie studio. Though they have done a really great job with The Ascent, there is no doubt that there is huge pressure on them at the moment. Give them some time. I am sure they will start releasing performance patches soon.


If you think this guide has helped you, then let us know in the comment section below. Also, If you have found a fix that is guaranteed to work then also you can comment below. We will put it on this article. Good luck!


That’s all folks!

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