Games For Windows Live Not Working For Dark Souls or Fable 3? Here’s a Fix

Update 1-8-2013: If this fix does not work for you, check this one out.


Playing a Games for Windows Live game recently? Microsoft must be doing something with this thing to make it such a pain to get setup. Recently, though this problem has been around for a while now, a new version of the Games for Windows Live client came out but it wasn’t included in any of the games people bought. Fable 3, Dark Souls, you name it and people were having plenty of issues launching these games. In fact, many people couldn’t even get get a blank screen when launching these titles. At least Dark Souls has the decency to just crash on you and not let your hopes sit there waiting for a response.

With Windows 8 rapidly approaching, one has to think that Microsoft is planning to actually make Games for Windows Live a built-in service. At least, I hope they are. Right now it feels like an offline PSP where you have to buy the newest game for the latest firmware. You never know if you’re on the right version until things stop working. Windows 8 is making many services built-in and it is headed in the right direction as far as Microsoft-branded products and clients go. However, Games for Windows Live does not work on Windows 8 no matter what you try. Any sane person would think, “hey, I’ll just buy Dark Souls and get this thing up to date, right?” No. That is not the case, sir.

There are three things every person does when hit with the GFWL problem, in order:

  1. Google Search, because no matter how many times you repair this thing you always forget the ridiculous steps you had to take to get it working last time.
  2. Download the GFWL setup EXE at least two more times hoping the website might give you the updated version.
  3. Reinstall DirectX once more thinking, “okay maybe it isn’t Games for Windows Live…”

No, it is. I recently bought Fable 3 for the PC when Steam was having the Summer sale. I also just got Dark Souls and cursed myself for it. No, it wasn’t because I had to get an unofficial patch to make the resolution better. It was because I forgot they opted for GFWL on this port and I couldn’t never get it working for Fable 3. For those wondering, I am on Windows 8 Release Preview. However, my laptop which is a fully updated Windows 7 Home-Premium machine was having the same issue.

So if you are in the same predicament as me, I have the fix for you. A friend of mine told me this and I laughed in his face because it just couldn’t be true. How stupid could this service be that the only way to get the most updated and working version is to download a game no would have even looked at before? Well, apparently extremely stupid.

If you want Games for Windows Live to work and you are having issues, go on Steam and download the free version of Microsoft Flight.

Yes. That is the fix. Flight is not a new game by any stretch but it is the only source for the most updated and complete version of Games for Windows Live. You can’t make this stuff up, I swear.

After I downloaded a game I never even batted an eye at (which stands at over 2 gigs of space, mind you in case you’re low on HDD availability) I was able to boot up Flight and get right on Games for Windows Live. I actually do suggest using Flight to sign in and download your profile, too. It is quite smooth on that game.

Finally, I was able to boot up Fable 3 and Dark Souls with zero issues as I watched the little notifications for achievements and friends popping up and fading away. This was perhaps the most perplexing issue I have ever had with a game on the PC. You can Google search all you want but I was unable to find this fix anywhere on the internet. How my friend found this out, I will never know. Maybe I should check his Steam profile to see if he is a closet Flight fanatic.

Oh, and before you ask, no I did not actually play Flight. Though, it was free and saved me a ton of torment so I might play it out of thanks.

Enjoy your games now!