Possible Fix for Act of War Direct Action W764bit
Okay after reading through all of these I found some possible solutions to try.
First, this was tested for:
Windows 7 64Bit
EVGA 580 SC 320.49 WHQL drivers (Graphic card not overclocked by me)
8GB of RAM 1600mhz (no overcloking)
Intel Core i7-2600K (no overclocking)
Screen Resolution in Windows 7 - 1920x1080
Firewall and Anti-Virus programs are active not disabled.
Act of War: Direct Action from Steam Store, no mods/addons being used.
Here is what I did to get the Campaign part of the game working. I did not test multiplayer/skirmish or any other modes or mods.
1. Go ahead and grab that file (d3d9.dll) from moddb (I don't know why it is called a proxy, but the file scanned with Norton Internet Security definitions as of 2:30 A.M. Sept 18, 2013)
It is only a .dll file and should not (I would advise you ask Steam before trying as I take NO responsibility if this causes issue with Steam, your Steam Account, or your Steam games or this game - sorry just covering my six) violate steam terms since it isn't a modified .exe. Do not use, what someone suggested, a cracked version, as that more than likely will or can violate the terms of service with Steam and leading to possible locking out of this game to their service, in essence losing access to multiplayer possible and the game as well or even further actions (read the legalise of TOS for more details about this) - suffice to say, never use any altered .exe file unless you have contacted Steam directly and they HAVE SAID IT IS OKAY. Do not take players, posters, or comments on message forums as an okay from Steam. One way to look at this, if it will in any way enhance, buff, debuff, improve, alter, change any aspect of how you game plays in terms of having an edge over others, or advantage in getting achievements unlocked easier, then it is almost certainly not advise to do..
2. This is for Nvidia users, I can't confirm if this fix applies to AMD/ATI as I haven't tested this on an ATI 7970m on my Alienware M17x yet. I went into the settings for games, more precise, Nvidia Control Panel and Manage 3D Settings. Act of War: Direct Action should be listed. Now I have found this to work for many programs that were not written when graphics cards were or are as powerful as say a 580. You need to go into the game settings in the Manage 3D settings and turn off "ALL" or reduce all items to none, essentially you are turning off all enhancing/faster features of the graphics card here.
3. As mentioned, change the act of war.exe file to Windows XP Sp2 Compat, Run as Admin, and under the method I tested, I also checked all the boxes except run in 640x480 and run in 256 colors.
4. Now this sounds opposite of what you want to do, however, do not launch the game from within the Steam client. Instead launch the game from its directory instead. It will then autoload Steam, and if all goes well you should be able to play the game.
I have not tested this fix for:
Only Tested on:
Recommend for others, to slowly turn back on, or increase the settings in Manage 3D for Nvidia users, to see if you can improve graphics quality (during my test graphics were fine for this game, the videos were fine, and graphically the game appears not to suffer any stutters, skips, frame loss, etc.). Since I don't own the retail version I can't test that version to compare graphics to confirm or deny if there truly is any loss of quality.
I hope this helps. Feel free to add any changes you made in settings that didn't seem to affect the game being able to work.