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Sudden Problem Starting Cute Knight Deluxe

Posted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 3:43 am
by Saetana
I'm currently having a problem starting Cute Knight Deluxe and wonder if anyone has any ideas what is causing it. I bought the game a few weeks ago, after playing the original Cute Knight a few times, and the first few times I played it started fine (and I'd got halfway through the special endings). Then, the next time I tried to start it the usual small "loading" box came up and after about a minute a small box popped up with the following message:

Unexpected error occured when running the game

After this the box disappears and the game disappears from my processes list (Task Manager). I have tried completely uninstalling and reinstalling the game (losing my gathered ending pics in the process, sob) but still get the same error message.

I then reinstalled the original version of Cute Knight which I was playing through Wild Tangent (using coins to "rent" play sessions) and this works fine so I have bought this version as well (I had already used 28 coins towards it so only 22 to purchase - coin cost varys depending on subscription).

Even though I can now play the original so am not completely without the game I want my deluxe version back. I am running Windows XP Service Pack 3 on a 900Mhz Celeron with 256Mb RAM (yes I know its very old but this game is hardly new and I had no problems with it originally). I am getting a new PC in a few months but unless anyone has any bright ideas about what might be causing the problem then the only thing I can think of to get the game to work again is to reformat my hard drive which I am reluctant to do as it is only 3 months since I last did it (blue screens of death problems) and I have only just got all my software reinstalled.

By the way, drivers are not the issue, given the game worked originally, also my graphics chip has the most recent drivers (which happen to be nearly 10 years old - the brand doesn't exist anymore).

Can anyone help please?


Posted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 4:03 am
by hanako
Unfortunately, 'unexpected' error means just that - something happened that the game wasn't expecting and the engine doesn't even have a proper error message to display.

Usual culprits are the sound drivers.

If you've only just gotten all your software reinstalled there is of course the possibility that something you've recently installed has screwed up some connection somewhere in your computer.

The Deluxe build is on a slightly different engine in order to be Vista-compatible (Vista didn't exist when the original game was made) so it's not impossible for one version to work when the other doesn't.

If you can't figure it out, though, I may have an alternate version floating around from back when I was dealing with this similar problem, so remind me in the morning and I'll see if I can get you another build...

Posted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 2:50 pm
by Saetana
I have to admit I'm totally confused with this, given the game worked fine the first few times I played it. I do have quite a few games installed but I don't normally have a problem with incompatability with other games. Interesting what you said about the sound card, although the only problem I sometimes have with my sound is it gets bit jumpy sometimes when I'm really pushing my tiny amount of RAM to the limits. I'm not sure I've actually got a soundcard, it may be an onboard chip, I'd have to check.

I'll give it a few more days and see if anything occurs to me. Pity there isn't some program that can be used to check which software is possibly causing a conflict.


Posted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 8:02 pm
by WodashGSJ
If you want to see everything that's running, try Process Explorer from Microsoft. It's free, and will show you every process on your PC and how much RAM and CPU time they're using, plus details like file handles and dlls if you know what to do with that information. ... 96653.aspx

The only downside to it is a deliberate incompatibility on the part of SecuROM - any game using that protection will refuse to even start when Process Explorer is running.

Posted: Wed Dec 16, 2009 3:16 am
by Saetana
I already use Anvir Task Manager but I'm not sufficiently knowledgeable to work with DLLs etc. I'm starting to get blue screen crashes every couple of days now, rarely the same stopcode twice in a row, so I think I will need to reformat soon as this is what caused me to do it last time. I'm buying a new Windows 7 PC in the first half of next year (has anyone tried running the games on Windows 7 yet?) which I hope will solve all my computing woes. Speaking of which, will the games run on 64 bit systems?

Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2009 8:32 am
by Saetana
Okay, I had a blue screen crash whilst playing Cute Knight original version yesterday (I still cannot get the Deluxe version to start at all). The blue screen said the crash was due to file "kmixer.sys". I ran a search for this file and it found 5 instances of it in the Windows file, under Driver Cache and Service Packs. The file is a "Kernel Mode Audio Mixer", I have no idea what that is and I don't wish to mess with system files unless someone can tell me exactly what to do.

Hanako (or anyone else who may know), have you any idea what I can do about this problem? I believe you mentioned in an earlier post that the problem could be due to my soundcard and this file is certainly related to sound in some way. I may have to reformat again (not purely because of this) but if I can solve the problem some other way it would be preferable.

Any help would be much appreciated.


Posted: Thu Dec 17, 2009 1:48 pm
by hanako
If your computer is bluescreening regularly as you mentioned in the previous post, I'm really not sure ANY solution of mine is going to do you any good! Something's wrong with your machine, unfortunately. :(

WinXP should be reasonably stable. If it's not, I would guess that either some horrible malware has crept onto your computer, or you have some bad hardware that's causing intermittent errors, or you have bad RAM and that makes everything crash.

I would definitely not recommend you go messing with the random audio system files. If you know someone who's good with computers I'd suggest having them look at your machine in person, they will probably have much better luck figuring out what's wrong than I will.

Posted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 4:27 am
by Saetana
The blue screens appear to have stopped for the time being (I uninstalled a couple of programs I suspected as possible culprits). Unfortunately Cute Knight Deluxe still will not start. I have also used 2 different antimalware programs to scan (both highly recommended) and I have Threatfire running in realtime (only one that doesn't hog my limited resources). The upshot being, no nasties found. I now sincerely wish I had completed more than 6 months of my university Computing degree 10 years ago, lol!

Regarding kmixer.sys, I have been doing a bit of research and unfortunately there are several things that can be causing a problem (including memory). I acquired a memory diagnostic tool from Microsoft which ran a battery of tests and I was pleased to discover my memory is fine. One thing I did find was a few people having a problem with this file with a couple of other games. I still can't figure why the game worked at first and then stopped. I considered running the recovery console but it looks like that has been tried to no effect by others with this problem.

Oh, just in passing, when I try to check my gallery in the original Cute Knight after just achieving a new ending I am getting an error - something about trying to draw unknown sprite which I couldn't "ignore" and I had to "abort" instead. It is still adding pictures to the gallery as I can see them behind the error message. I've only recently started checking my gallery following a completed game so I've no idea if the problem has been there all along or if it is something to do with the general problems I am having. Its not a major problem given I've finished a game at this stage but I was wondering if anyone else had encountered it.

This PC is driving me up the wall, can't wait until I get a new one. Six months seems a long time at the moment but given I haven't had a new one since 1998 (my current one was donated by my father when he bought a new one 2 years ago - he bought it in late 2001) six more months will not kill me (unless it drives me to suicide of course, lol).