Error: Super Bomberman R Online: Black screen in Windows on start



  • Symptoms:

    When I start up Super Bomberman R Online, I get a black screen with nothing on it from the very beginning, and that never changes.

    Although, the Nvidia overlay shows the frame rate (as I configured it to before) and tells me to press ALT+Z to bring up the menu, which is normal.

    When it was working:

    The game was working fine without issue for several days, although I got the same black screen before, but just had to update my video card driver which was a version released before Super Bomberman R Online was released.

    What changed?:

    Nothing that I can think of other than resetting the state of the machine by powering off, although this was done many times before and the game continued to work.

    Attempted troubleshooting:

    1. I ran Planetary Annihilation, which is a render-heavy game that ran just fine, displaying 60 FPS with the Nvidia overlay.
    2. I tried running C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Super Bomberman R Online>SuperBombermanR_Online.exe from the Command Prompt, but it does the same thing without printing anything (thanks for that, Bomberman developers!)...
    3. I tried multi-tasking out of the application with ALT+Tab, but it has no effect.

    Software:

    • Game in question: Super Bomberman R Online, Steam edition, build 7743070
    • Operating System: Windows 10 Pro 10.0.19042 Build 19042
    • Nvidia driver version: GeForce 472.12 WHQL - [ r470_00 ]
    • Nvidia driver and utilties (from Chocolatey's command: choco list --local-only😞
      • nvidia-display-driver 497.29
      • nvidia-inspector 2.3.0.20200706
      • nvidia-profile-inspector 2.3.0.10

    Hardware:

    • Computer: MacBookPro14,2
    • eGPU: Akitio Node Pro
    • Video card: Asus NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 OC 2GB GDDR5

    Diagnostic info:

    • Nvidia Inspector info: Nvidia Inspector info


  • Actual solution:

    Don't select "Pin to Taskbar" for the Bomberman icon after starting the game from Steam. That will create a shortcut that runs the game's executable directly, which doesn't run it from Steam.

    The game is written stupidly such that it won't render anything if the executable is run directly.

    Follow these instructions to get a Taskbar shortcut for the Steam applaunch instance of Bomberman: https://steamcommunity.com/discussions/forum/1/364042262872776431/

    If the issue is with which GPU is being used, check this solution:

    Problem in general:

    Whenever Super Bomberman R Online has a black screen, it means that there is a problem with the video card being able to render the screen.

    When the latest graphics drivers are installed and confirmed running, the problem must be elsewhere.

    Problem in this specific case:

    My MacBook Pro 2017 has 2 GPUs be the integrated Intel GPU that's built in to the computer. Bomberman can't run properly on integrated Intel graphics, so it just stupidly prints a black screen.

    This is almost certainly a case of developers being lazy by not writing any checks or error logs. Even running Bomberman from the console prints absolutely nothing.

    How to investigate:

    While Bomberman is running, run "Task Manager" and check what GPU the Bomberman process is running on. Try the same thing with any other graphics-heavy game that is performing well, and you may notice that it's running on a different GPU.

    While Bomberman is running on its black screen, press the Windows key and type "Task Manager", then press enter, and find the SuperBombermanR_Online.exe process, and see what GPU it's running on.

    Evidence of malfunction:

    Here is Bomberman running on the integrated Intel GPU, which is slow and doesn't work for this game:

    enter image description here

    Solution:

    1. While Bomberman is running, in Task Manager, find the SuperBombermanR_Online.exe process.
    2. Right-click the process, and click Properties. Properties window
    3. Under the Properties window's Location heading, click-select the entire file path, then right-click, and click Copy (Using CTRL+C in property windows doesn't work because lazy).
    4. Press the Windows key and type "Graphics Settings" Graphics settings
    5. In the Graphics settings window, click the Browse button, then paste the parent folder for the Bomberman process that you copied earlier, and press enter
    6. Find the SuperBombermanR_Online.exe file, select it, and press enter
    7. Once the entry for Bomberman is created, select it and click Options Bomberman entry
    8. Select the "High Performance" option, which should have the name of your best GPU associated with it. When that's not the case, simply select the option with your best GPU. High-performance option
    9. Ensure Bomberman has exited by switching to the running instance and pressing ALT+F4 or right-clicking the Taskbar icon and selecting "Close window".
    10. After starting Bomberman again, run "Task Manager" again and notice that the Bomberman process is using the ideal GPU

    Evidence of solution working:

    Bomberman running on the ideal GPU: Bomberman running on ideal GPU




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