Among all the installments in the Elder Scrolls series, Skyrim has been popular for the longest time until now. Being the fifth installment, it came out a decade back and still enjoys considerable popularity. However, that’s not the topic of discussion here. Some users have complained about the game not launching on their system. 

Now, there could be various causes behind this issue. If you’re facing the same, you might be able to solve it by yourself at home. Here, you’ll find all you need to know on Skyrim won’t launch.

Simple Methods to Fix the Skyrim Won’t Launch Error

When you’re unable to run Skyrim on your PC, there could be various causes. However, there are as many solutions as well. You need not necessarily look for professional help and might want to try to fix it yourself. In that case, here are some of the simple methods that can provide a solution:

  • Update Graphics Drivers

Your computer has a certain graphics capability. For the gaming features to be able to utilize fully, it needs software. That’s where a graphics driver comes into the picture. It’s a very important component of your system and must be kept up-to-date. 

Otherwise, you might face Skyrim won’t launch notification. So, you need to find out the latest update from the manufacturer’s website and install it. Then, you might be able to launch the game.

  • Repair Game Files

There are many big and small files in the game folder. If even a single one of them gets damaged or corrupted, you won’t be able to launch the program. So, you can go to the Steam library and scan for any damage or corruption. If there are, then you can repair it, which will take some time. 

Yet another way to fix Skyrim se won’t launch is to delete all the files except the executable one (.exe). Click on this file and it’ll prompt you to download the remaining files. This would be useful if you’re unable or don’t want to scan for a damaged file.

  • Restart the System

When you’re able to launch Skyrim, you don’t always need to try anything big. Sometimes, something as simple as a restart does the job of fixing the Skyrim won’t launch issue. After all, it can fix so many other issues as well. If you’re still facing the problem, there are many other methods to try anyway.

  • Update Windows

The problem you’re facing can also be caused by an outdated system. In that case, what your PC needs is an update. Check whether an update has been released lately on the manufacturer’s website and install it. This’ll hopefully provide you with a solution for Skyrim won’t launch.

  • Disable all programs running in the background

When you’re running a program on your computer, it uses a part of the resources. The higher the requirements of a game, the higher the resources it’ll take up. Games like Skyrim might have quite a high requirement for your PC, depending on the one you’re using. So, if you’re running any other programs or software in the background, you have to close them. Otherwise, the system might not be able to launch the game. Go to the processes tab in the taskbar and disable all the ongoing ones.

  • Check if Steam has been installed properly

Steam is very useful for buying games, repairing corrupted files, and more. It comes with quite a big size and occupies a considerable amount of space. However, sometimes, the installation may have been incomplete. In such a case, it can cause problems in launching a game. Then you have two options: either re-install Steam or repair the damaged file.

Now, you might not want to go with the first one. After all, it’ll mean losing your existing games and the associated data. So, you might want to go for repairing the damaged file. To do that simply, you can use the command prompt as an administrator. Specifically, you have to repair the SteamService.exe file.

However, there’s another way in case you’re looking for one. This method is quite simple and easy — Delete all the files in Steam except Steam.exe. Then, click on it to run it, and it’ll download all the remaining files again. However, before that, you have to restart the system once. Remember not to click the file from any shortcut and only do so from the File Manager.

These steps have proven to be effective in many cases. So, you would hopefully be able to properly launch the game after installing it.

  • Disable Antivirus Software

To protect your computer from various threats, the antivirus will interfere with various programs. This could be the reason why you’re unable to launch Skyrim. So, you might want to try disabling the antivirus for a while. You can also check which game files it has blacklisted in particular and remove them from the list. 

However, you might not want to keep going on like this since it’s a question of the safety of your computer. Maybe it would be better if you get a different antivirus software or look for professional advice.

  • Reinstall Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

If the above-mentioned methods were not effective, you don’t have many options left. The most viable one would probably be to install it all over again. Delete every file and then download them again from Steam. Even though this would take some time, it might still fix the Skyrim won’t launch issue. 

However, it can work only if there was a problem with the game, to begin with. In case there was a system error, you have to find and solve it. However, if you have followed the methods given, you probably won’t need to do that. Hopefully, the reinstallation would be the ultimate solution to the game not launching problem.


There’s no need to be worried if Skyrim won’t launch on your PC. Provided that your computer fulfils the requirements of the game, you can find a solution to the issue. All you have to do is follow the methods given here. All of these methods have been tried and been effective in providing solutions, in many cases. However, there are conditions where these methods will work. Hopefully, they will do so in your case, too.