Performance issues FAQ

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As mentioned in the technical issues FAQ, Spiral Knights has certain hardware requirements. If you only meet the minimum requirements, there are some things that you can do to try to improve the performance of the game on your computer.

Graphics Options

In game try:

On your computer try:

  • On Windows Vista and Windows 7 the Aero Glass (see through effects) should be disabled while running the game to free up additional system resources.
  1. Right click the Spiral Knights icon on the desktop or in the Start menu
  2. Select "Properties"
  3. Select the "Compatibility" tab
  4. Select the box "Disable desktop composition"
  5. Click "OK"

Background Tasks

If at all possible, try to close any unnecessary programs while playing the game. This will help free up additional system resources.

Poor Loading Times

If a hard drive is fragmented than the loading time of Spiral Knights will suffer. Using the Operating System's built in disk defragmenting program can help.

If another program is using the hard disk to move a lot of data, like a high speed download, loading times will increase. Try to avoid these types of activities while playing.

Lagging Gameplay

Spiral Knights is suprisingly sensitive to network response times, more so than many other popular MMOs. Try these suggestions:

  • Make sure that your are not downloading anything while trying to play the game.
  • If the Detect by IP does not result in a good connection you can force one of the two selections in the Options Menu.
  • If your connection is shared, the actions of other users ont he internet can affect your connection.
  • If you use a wireless home network where you play, make sure you have a consistent connection that does not drop.
  • Unfortunately satellite or wireless broadband connections may not provide the low latency connection needed to have an enjoyable experience.
  • A good site to test the stability of your connection is (Use Virginia for people connecting to US East and Ireland for EU West)
    • Any packet loss is a cause for concern and can affect many internet applications.
    • High numbered ping is what causes a delay in actions.
    • Jitter is the fluctuation of ping. If this value is high it is responsible for the "rubber band" effect where a character will lurch forward in sudden spurts. Low jitter (less than ~10ms) is very important to a smooth game play experience.
  • Lowering the game priority below 'normal' may also help in solving connection problems. It may, however, affect the game speed due to lowered overall game client performance.

Game/Computer Crashes or Becomes Unresponsive

If your game or computer crashes after you have been logged into the game for a while, it is possible your computer is overheating or high RAM usage. Try these suggestions:

  • Make sure your computer is dust free.
  • Use a fan or cooling mat to keep your computer's temperature in check.
  • Restart Spiral Knights after each time you go back to Haven after exploring the Clockworks.

Login Errors

Sometimes after an update a user may find that they are unable to log in at all on their computer. If the Technical issues FAQ ofers no solution then a user should look to resetting their router or looking for a firmware upgrade.

Users of late model WRT54G series devices may find that the software from Linksys offers no fix. In this case the DD-WRT firmware may be a solution. NOTE: Upgrading the firmware on a router is not a perfect risk free process, neither Three Rings Design nor any user on this wiki is responsible for broken devices resulting from firmware modification.

ATI/AMD Radeon Video Cards

Flickering Textures

Users with ATI/AMD Radeon 3000 and upwards dedicated graphics cards may experience lighting flickering while playing the game.

This is a confirmed bug with the Catalyst 11.4 and 11.3 drivers and how they handle OpenGL; not a game bug.

In Game Stuttering

Some users may experience stuttering game play and small periods of unresponsiveness when using various Spring 2011 Catalyst driver release. This appears to be a driver based problem.

Upgrading to the to the most recent driver release appears to solve this issue for most users.

Radeon X1000 Series Blank Screen

Users of this series card seem to experience an error message of "We were unable to initialize the game's graphical display." despite following all the instructions on the Technical issues FAQ.

This appears to be a glitch with these cards and the Catalyst A.I. option visible only in the Catalyst Control Center Suite.

  • A confirmed fix for these cards is to set the Catalyst A.I. in the 3D Settings menu to "Standard."
    • Catalyst 10.2 is a confirmed good release if having trouble with this fix.

Intel Integrated Graphics

Game Not Starting

This problem is almost always met by a "Failed to initialize graphical display" error. This is usually solved by following the instructions in the Technical issues FAQ.

Installing Intel Drivers When Blocked by OEM Drivers

Some laptop brands will prevent non-vendor drivers from being installed. Here is a way to get around this.

  1. Download the most up to date copy from Intel's website. Save it to an easily found location.
  2. Open the Device Manager.
  3. Expand the "Display adapters" list and right-click the listed device. Select Uninstall and make sure the delete driver software box is selected.
  4. Press OK to start the uninstall. NOTE: The screen flickering and resolution changing is a normal part of this process.
  5. Restart your computer.
  6. Launch the installer for the new drivers that were downloaded. Follow the installation wizard's instructions to finish the process.

NVIDIA Optimus

Some users may experience game crashes on an Optimus equipped system when the system tries to launch Spiral Knights in low power mode and then switch to high power mode mid game. This can be solved by creating a power profile that will always launch Spiral Knights in high power mode.

  1. Open the NVIDIA Control Panel (usually found in the Start Menu)
  2. In the "Select a Task..." menu open 3D Settings and click on Manage 3D Settings
  3. Click to the Program Settings tab.
  4. Click the Add button.
  5. Navigate to C:\Program Files\Java\jre6\bin and select java.exe
  6. Choose the High-performance NVIDIA Processor in the select preferred graphics processor dropbox.
  7. You're done! Feel free to close the NVIDIA Control Panel and Play Spiral Knights normally.
  • The location of of the java.exe file may be different depending on your Java or game installation.
  • Steam users should look in C:\Program Files\Steam\steamapps\common\spiral knights\java_vm\bin

WRT54G Series Router Problems

There is a problem where some WRT54G routers using stock firmware cannot connect to the game. A temporary work-around has been discovered for this problem. Credit goes to this post on the Steam Forums.

  1. Access the router page (default page is
  2. Go to the Setup tab and select the sub-tab Basic Setup.
  3. Change "MTU: Manual"
  4. Change "Size: 1458"
  5. Click the Save Settings button

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