It takes time to be an “experienced criminal”, but now Payday 2 won’t launch. If you run into Payday 2 performance issues or errors, don’t worry. We’ll show you how to solve Payday 2 not launching and other common issues in this post.

Run Basic Troubleshooting

You may have tried the basic troubleshooting methods such as:

  • Restart Steam and your PC
  • Run Payday 2 as administrator (and also tried this from your installation folder)
  • Verify the integrity of game cache (Library > Right-click on Payday 2 > Properties > Local files > Verify) etc.

If you haven’t done the basic troubleshooting, then try those before you head to the fixes below. In this post, we’ll show you some solutions you may not have tried yet to get rid of your Payday 2 not launching issue.

8 fixes to try when Payday 2 won’t launch

You might not need to try them all; simply work your way down the list until you find the one that works.

  1. Remove all third party mods
  2. Update device drivers
  3. Change render_settings file
  4. Reinstall the latest Visual C++
  5. Switch to the right graphics card
  6. Perform a clean boot
  7. Run SFC
  8. Reinstall the game

Fix 1: Remove All 3rd Party Mods

I know most Payday 2 gamers just love the mods, and some love the mods part even more than the game itself. However, I’m not saying you should remove these mods for good, but just rename WSOCK32.dll and maybe IPHLPAPI.dll as well. If this method doesn’t do the trick, you can change it back later on.

For non-mod players, you can skip to the next fix.
  1. Press the Windows Key + R to open the Run box.
  2. Type %localappdata% and press Enter.
  3. Open the PAYDAY 2 folder.
  4. Rename WSOCK32.dll to WSOCK32.dll.old.
  5. Try launching your game again.

Many Payday 2 gamers find the mods are the real culprit. Payday 2 not launching is an issue that you’ll always bump into when there’s a game update. The most important of all is to make sure you have the latest SuperBLT mods installed. However, sometimes you have to wait for the update.

Fix 2: Update Device Drivers

Your graphics card driver is vital to your gaming performance. Therefore, always check for any updates when you run into a game crashing or not launching. You’ll probably be amazed at how many driver updates you missed out on. If you have tried updating your GPU drivers, but failed to solve Payday 2 not launching issue, you’d better update your audio drivers as well.

To update your graphics driver, you have two options: manually or automatically.

Option 1: Update your graphics driver manually

Download the latest & correct graphics driver from the manufacturer’s website:

Once downloaded, open the driver file and install the latest driver manually.

The manual updating process is time-consuming. You’ll need to check for updates again and again since the graphics card manufacturers keep releasing new drivers to fix bugs and improve performance for certain games. You may be amazed at how often you miss a driver update for your graphics card.

Option 2: Update your graphics driver automatically

Updating your graphics driver automatically is quite easy. Simply download and run Driver Easy, and it will recognize your system and find the correct & latest driver for it. Also, you can also update other related drivers such as audio driver, keyboard driver, etc.

1) Download and install Driver Easy.

2) Run Driver Easy and click the Scan Now button. Driver Easy will then scan your computer and detect any problem drivers.

3) Click the Update button next to your graphics card to download the latest and correct driver for it, then you can manually install it.


Click the Update All button at the bottom right to automatically update all outdated or missing drivers on your computer (this requires the Pro version).

Driver Easy Pro comes with full support and a 30-day money back guarantee. You’ll be prompted to upgrade when you click Update All.

4) After updating with Driver Easy, restart your PC to take full effect.

If you need assistance, please contact Driver Easy’s support team at

Fix 3: Change render_settings file

  1. Press the Windows Key + R to open the Run box.
  2. Type %localappdata% and press Enter.
  3. Open the PAYDAY 2 folder.
  4. Locate render_settings, then right-click and select Edit with Notepad++.
  5. Once opened, press Ctrl + F and enter resolution to find the resolution setting.
    Eg. resolution=”1920 1080?
  6. Change the value into your display resolution.
  7. Try starting your game again.

You may have to try this method mutiple times until you find the resolution that works.

Fix 4: Reinstall the latest Visual Studio C++

If your PC is not shipped with the most recent DirectX (DX12, how to check?) or Microsoft Visual C++, you should consider downloading the latest version yourself.

Either you’re running Visual C++ 2013 or 2015, or you have all versions installed, first uninstall the ones you have.

  1. Press Windows key + R and type appwiz.cpl, then press Enter.
  2. Uninstall the Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable you have installed.
  3. Download the latest version (both ×64 and ×86) from Microsoft official website.
  4. Once the program file is downloaded, double-click on the executable and follow the onscreen instructions to install it on your computer. Make sure both the x64 and x86 versions are installed properly.

Now you can run your Payday 2 to check if it launches properly.

Fix 5: Switch to the Right Graphics Card

There’s an issue with Payday 2 using the integrated card instead of the dedicated one. Laptop users should force Payday 2 to use the AMD/Nvidia card instead. Here’s how to do it:

If your graphics card supports switchable graphics cards, that’ll be simple.

1. I’m using AMD

  1. Right-click on the desktop.
  2. Select Configure switchable graphics cards.
  3. Expand All applications.
  4. Choose Add application.
  5. Locate your PAYDAY 2 folder.
  6. Click payday2_win32_release.exe and click OK
  7. Under Graphics Settings choose High Performance.
  8. Click Apply.

2. I’m using Nvidia

  1. Right-click on the desktop.
  2. Select NVIDIA Control Panel
  3. Under 3D settings, click Manage 3D Settings.
  4. Click on the Programs Settings tab.
  5. Click Add and find Payday 2 executable file, and click OK.
  6. Choose High Performance NVIDIA processor.
  7. Click Apply.

3. I need to do it manually

If unfortunately, your graphics card doesn’t support a switchable graphics card, you can force it to use your dedicated card manually.

  1. Press Windows key + X and select Device Manager.
  2. Expand Display Adapters.
  3. Right-click your integrated graphics card and choose Disable, then your screen resolution will change.
  4. Restart the computer.
  5. Run PAYDAY 2 and then close it.
  6. Open the Device Manager again.
  7. Right-click your integrated card and choose Enable.

Fix 6: Perform a Clean Boot

If your Payday 2 doesn’t launch whatsoever, and all of these methods above failed to solve the issue, it’s probably caused by conflicting software.

Steam has made a list of programs that may interfere with your game. Therefore, you need to make sure you’re not running any of the software listed. Press Ctrl + Shift + Delete to end all the background programs.

The following programs are known to cause issues when playing Payday 2:

  • Raptr
  • DisplayLink
  • Hamachi
  • Qualcomm Killer Network Manager
  • ASUS Gamer OSD
  • ASUS Smart Doctor
  • Evolve client
  • Avira Antivirus
  • Razer’s Synapse Statistics
  • GeForce Experience (in some cases increasing loading times)
  • EVGA PrecisionX (this program can auto-start even if you think it’s disabled)
  • RivaTuner
  • Kaspersky Antivirus (causing FPS drops)
  • Avast Home Network Protection

However, Antivirus is an exception, and merely disabling it won’t work. You can either uninstall it or search for how to make an exception for your game. If Payday 2 still won’t launch, you can perform a clean boot.

  1. Press Win + R to open the Run box.
  2. Type msconfig in the Run box and click on the OK button.
  3. Under the General tab, uncheck Load Startup items.
  4. Then go to the Services tab and check Hide all Microsoft services. Then click Disable all.
  5. Click Apply > OK.
  6. Now restart your computer and try running Payday 2 again to check if the not launching issue still persists.

If this doesn’t work for you, you can open the system configuration again and enable all the services. But if a clean reboot helps, you can find out which one is at fault by enabling the services one by one.

Fix 7: Run SFC

System file checker is a Windows tool to check system file corruption. You may use this tool to scan all protected system files and repair those missing or corrupted.

  1. Type cmd in the Windows search bar.
  2. Choose Run as administrator.
  3. In the Command Prompt window, enter the following command: sfc /scannow. Note that there’s a space between sfc and /.
  4. Wait for the process to complete.

You may need to reboot your computer and try running your Payday 2. If this doesn’t work, you’ll need to run this command again and reboot.

Fix 8: Reinstall the game

This is your go-to option if these methods failed to bring back your Payday 2. Plus, make sure you delete all the related game folders and empty the Recycle Bin.

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