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I bought KotOR 1 and 2 a few weeks ago (on Steam), installed them, both worked just fine without giving me any trouble, so I've put them aside for a while. Tried launching KotOR 1 again a few days ago, but without success. For some reason the game won't launch at all now. It does appear in the Task Manager, but under background processes.

I've tried every single fix I came across, but to no avail. Trying to launch in every compatibility mode (+ as Administrator), turning off frame buffer effects and shadows, turning off videos, removing the biologo.bik, leclogo.bik and legal.bik files, turning off thread optimization in the NVIDIA Control Panel, launching in windowed mode, turning on and off vsync; tried every one of them, but none of them worked.
Not to lie though, launching in Windows 98 compatibility mode did work, but when I try to start a game in this mode, my screen just turns black and immediately crashes (after character creation), after which I'm forced to reboot my computer, because it won't allow me to shut down the game via Task Manager.

I'm using a Windows 10 laptop with an NVIDIA GTX 960M graphics card. I would say my system is not the problem, because like I said, the games ran perfectly when I had just bought them, and that was on the same system, so it's really strange they don't launch at all now. Nothing changed in the meantime, except for a regular Windows update last week that I can think of, but I have no idea what this could have changed on my system.
After KotOR gave me trouble, I checked if my other games were still working, the old and the newer ones, and they all ran fine.

So I'm asking you if I'm not missing something really crucial here, and if there is any possibility to run these games ever again on my system. I fear the worst though, because every thread I came across on the internet with the same problem I am having now, didn't give me any solution either. :(
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Problems such as this. a game not even really starting, are often very tough to solve, since there are a million different things that could cause such behaviour and you can't even rely on an error message as a starting point... so I feel your pain.

Now, luckily we know that the game ran on your exact system (and even in Windows 10) before, which is good. This indicates that something changed between the time when it worked and now.
You mentioned a Windows update, but there may be other things that changed, though maybe you weren't aware of them or simply overlooked them. The fact that the game starts in Windows 98 compatibility mode is interesting too. The compatibility modes basically tell an application to use older DLLs and similar stuff, so this is another hint that maybe an update caused your problems somewhere. Is Windows 98 the only working mode?

You could try to check what exactly that Windows update entailed, and maybe perform a rollback to check if the game starts then. Other possible issues could be your GPU driver, anti-virus software, the usual.

I might add that being forced to reboot your computer because you can't kill the game process is highly unusual and not a very good sign, that obviously shouldn't happen.

I'm afraid I can't help you more than that, I haven't used Windows 10 at all and am not familiar with it.
I actually turned off movies in the settings and that helped.