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Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag cover
Ubisoft Montreal
Windows Ubisoft Ukraine
Release dates
Windows November 19, 2013
Metacritic 84
OpenCritic 85
Monetization One-time game purchase, DLC
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Perspectives Third-person
Controls Direct control
Genres Action, Open world, Stealth
Vehicles Naval/watercraft
Themes Historical, Piracy
Series Assassin's Creed
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag on HowLongToBeat
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag on IGDB
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag guide on StrategyWiki
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag on MobyGames
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag on Wikipedia
Assassin's Creed 2008
Assassin's Creed II 2010
Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood 2011
Assassin's Creed: Revelations 2011
Assassin's Creed III 2012
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag 2013
Assassin's Creed: Liberation HD 2014
Assassin's Creed: Freedom Cry 2014
Assassin's Creed: Pirates 2014
Assassin's Creed Unity 2014
Assassin's Creed Rogue 2015
Assassin's Creed Chronicles (series)
Assassin's Creed Syndicate 2015
Assassin's Creed Origins 2017
Discovery Tour (series)
Assassin's Creed Odyssey 2018
Assassin's Creed III Remastered 2019
Assassin's Creed III: Liberation Remastered 2019
Assassin's Creed Valhalla 2020
Assassin's Creed Mirage 2023

Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag is a singleplayer and multiplayer third-person action, open world and stealth game in the Assassin's Creed series.

General information

PC Report
Official forums
Steam Community Discussions


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
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Gold Edition.
Gamesplanet logo.svg
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Gold Edition.
Green Man Gaming
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Gold Edition.
Humble Store
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Gold Edition.
Steam (unavailable)
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Icon overlay.png
Gold Edition.
Ubisoft Store
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Gold Edition also available. This edition is included with Ubisoft+.
Windows (unavailable)
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Origin (unavailable)
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Deluxe Edition was also available.
All versions require Ubisoft Connect DRM.

Version differences

The Gold Edition is a complete edition containing the base game and all DLC.
The Deluxe Edition includes Aveline DLC, The Castaway's Prize and Illustrious Pirates Pack.
Freedom Cry is available as both DLC and a standalone game.


DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
Season Pass
Kraken Ship Pack Season Pass exclusive.
Freedom Cry Pack Also available as a standalone game.
The Castaway's Prize Deluxe and Gold Edition exclusive.
Aveline DLC Deluxe and Gold Edition exclusive.
Time saver: Resources Pack
Time saver: Collectibles Pack
Time saver: Activities Pack
Death Vessel Pack
Crusader & Florentine Pack
Time saver: Technology Pack
MP Character Pack: Blackbeard's Wrath
Illustrious Pirates Pack
Guild of Rogues

Essential improvements

Skip intro videos

File removal[citation needed]
  1. Go to the <path-to-game>.
  2. Go into videos (for single player) or multi\videos (for multiplayer).
  3. Rename, delete or move these files:
warning_disclaimer.bik is in a subfolder that corresponds with the set language.

DLC Not Showing Up In-Game

If you bought the game with all its DLC (the gold edition for example), the game might not show these DLC in-game. This can be seen through the Stay tuned for more adventures message in the main menu.
Enter And Exit The Multiplayer Mode[1]
While the multiplayer is loading, the game checks for Downloadable content, which means our dlc.
  1. Select Multiplayer from the main menu.
  2. Upon reaching the multiplayer menu, go back to the Singleplayer menu.
  3. Once back in the Singleplayer menu, the top-right box should now be replaced with Freedom Cry/Aveline.
If step 3 is not the case, repeat the previous steps.
Test if this fix is consistent by closing and relaunching the game.
Also works with already existing savegames.
This has to be done with every reinstall of the game.
Fix might not be possible when the servers are eventually shutdown.

If you cannot reach 60fps cap the framerate to 35fps

The game is not optimized to run above 30fps, therefore a lot of modern gaming systems (especially laptops) fail to reach and maintain 60fps.

Capping to 30fps provides a very choppy experience and 40fps provides a very stuttery experience. 35fps is much less stuttery than 40fps and is noticeably smoother than 30fps, therefore it is the recommended way to play if you cannot get 60fps. Information on various framerate capping tools can be found here but the recommended tool to use is RTSS.

Latest update breaking full screen fix

This "mod" fixes the full screen issues that the recent update introduced. This works for Steam and the Ubisoft Connect versions of the game.

Link to the fullscreen fix

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\Assassin's Creed IV Black Flag\*.ini
%USERPROFILE%\Documents\Assassin's Creed IV Black Flag\GFXSettings.*.xml
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/242050/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game data location

System Location
Ubisoft Connect <Ubisoft-Connect-folder>\savegames\<user-id>\273\
Steam <Ubisoft-Connect-folder>\savegames\<user-id>\437\
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/242050/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
Steam Cloud
Ubisoft Connect
Disabled in 2013.[2]


Graphics settings.
Graphics settings.

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
Anamorphic 16:9; use Flawless Widescreen to remove letterboxing.
Anamorphic 16:9;[3] use Flawless Widescreen. Or if using an AMD card just use Catalyst version 14.4
See the community page.
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
Use jim2point0's cheat table (requires Cheat Engine).
See Windowed.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
TXAA (Nvidia only), FXAA, SMAA (actually SMAA T2X) and MSAA/CSAA (also using FXAA).
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Double buffered. See FPS drops to 30 when Vsync is enabled for triple buffered v-sync.
60 FPS
120+ FPS
Frame rate is capped at 63 FPS.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
See the glossary page for potential alternatives.


Run patcher[4]
  1. Download AC4 Window Mode Patcher.
  2. Copy it to the installation folder and launch it.
  3. Type y and press Enter to start patching.
Use WinExplorer[citation needed]
  1. Download WinExplorer.
  2. Run game and choose a resolution of your choice.
  3. Alt+Tab to the desktop.
  4. Open WinExplorer and select AC4 from list of running programs.
  5. Head over to style tab and tick WS_DISABLED and WS_CHILD checkboxes.


You may want to further customize the window style with WS_THICKFRAME, WS_BORDER or WS_DLGFRAME options


Controls settings.
Controls settings.


Audio settings.
Audio settings.
General settings.
General settings.

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Sliders for music, effects and voices.
Surround sound
Autodetection up to 5.1 setups.
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Royalty free audio


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Simplified Chinese
Japanese Subtitles can only be enabled when the Interface/Menu Language is set to Japanese.
Brazilian Portuguese
Fan translation.


Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play
Online play

Connection types

VR support

3D modes State Notes
Nvidia 3D Vision
Use Helix Mod: Assassins Creed 4 Black Flag.
Officially supported game, see official vorpx game list.

Issues unresolved

Mouse and keyboard do not work

Might be related to either Logitech or Steam Controller drivers, as the game improperly detects the input device.[5]

Issues fixed

Missing Audio during combat

If game was bought as DLC instead of standalone copy, you will come across an issue where Adewale's Machete and various other weapon sounds appear to be silent which Ubisoft never released a proper fix.
Override DLC file[6][7][8]
  1. Download DataPC_10_dlc.forge
  2. Replace file located in <path-to-game>\dlc_10.
This may cause achievements, story progression and unlockables to be deemed as incomplete / locked unless file is reverted back to default.

Crash when installed in a Storage Space

The game will refuse to run when installed on a drive which is managed by a Storage Space on Windows 8 and later.
Creating a junction to the folder "sounddata" to a non-Windows Storage Space drive seems to solve the problem[citation needed]
Installing the Game on a drive that is not a Storage Space will fix this issue[citation needed]

Game freezes on AMD GPUs

This issue first manifests upon starting a new file when the game freezes on a black screen with the 'saving' icon.
Avoid using MSAA or EQAA[9]
Turn soft shadows off

The image freezes but the game still runs in the background

Sometimes the game might appear to be frozen, but you can still hear the sound and the HUD works.[10]
Enabling "Volumetric Fog" and / or disabling "FXAA" fixes the issue[citation needed]
"Volumetric Fog" may cause artifacts on screen edges in-game, Use Driver AA instead if MSAA is being used.[11]

FPS drops to 30 when Vsync is enabled

This is caused by lack of triple buffering in the game.
Use D3DOverrider to force triple buffering[12]
Don't force VSync in D3DOverrider, only triple buffering. Enable VSync in game options (or force it in Nvidia control panel or Nvidia Inspector).
If you're using SweetFX or another injector, this fix will not work. Use the workaround below.
Use RadeonPro to force triple buffering[citation needed]
  1. Download and install RadeonPro.
  2. Launch RadeonPro.
  3. Add a profile pointing to AC4BFSP.exe or AC4BFMP.exe.
  4. Select the exe profile by clicking on it.
  5. Go to the tweaks tab leave Vsync to driver default and check triple buffering.


Tested on Win8.1 with CFX 7970s.[citation needed]
Use Ctrl-Alt-Del workaround to force triple buffering[citation needed]
This method has only been tested on Windows 7 SP1 with an Nvidia graphics card and on Windows 10 with an AMD graphics card.
  1. Press Ctrl+Alt+Delete.
  2. Click the cancel button to return to your desktop.
  3. Go back to the game by clicking its icon on the taskbar.
Alt+Tab does NOT work.
This workaround makes possible the use of SweetFX or other injectors with triple buffering.

Nvidia PhysX performance issues on newer GPUs

Disable Nvidia PhysX in the in-game settings menu
Disable Shadowplay[13]
Change process affinity[13]
  1. Press Ctrl+Alt+Delete to open Task Manager.
  2. Go to the Details tab.
  3. Right click ac4bfsp.exe and select "Set affinity".
  4. Uncheck the last CPU core and hit OK.
  5. Go back to the same menu and re-enable it.
  6. Close Task Manager.
Remove old PhysX files[13]
  1. Install updated PhysX drivers
  2. Go to the <path-to-game>
  3. Delete or rename PhysX3_x86.dll, PhysX3Common_x86.dll, PhysX3Cooking_x86.dll, PhysX3Gpu_x86.dll, PhysXDevice.dll

This will disable PhysX in the game. This has the same effect as simply disabling PhysX in the in-game menu.

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 11
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes


Middleware Notes
Audio Wwise [14]
Anti-cheat PunkBuster Used PunkBuster initially[15] but was eventually removed.[16]

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) Vista SP2
Processor (CPU) Intel Core 2 Quad Q8400 2.6 GHz
AMD Athlon II X4 620 2.6 GHz
System memory (RAM) 2 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 30 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce GTX 260
ATI Radeon HD 4870
512 MB of VRAM
Shader model 4.0 support
Sound (audio device) DirectX compatible
Supported video cards include: Nvidia GeForce GTX 260 or better, GT400, GT500, GT600, GT700 series or ATI Radeon HD4870 or better, HD5000, HD6000, HD7000 series.
Laptop graphics cards may work but are not officially supported.
Dual core processors will, despite the minimum requirements, most likely work.[17] (only LGA1150/LGA1155 dual core processors will, under most circumstances, deliver a playable frame rate - LGA775/LGA1156 and AM2/AM2+/AM3/FM1/FM2 dual core CPUs are unlikely to suffice due to significantly lower IPC)


  1. 1.0 1.1 File/folder structure within this directory reflects the path(s) listed for Windows and/or Steam game data (use Wine regedit to access Windows registry paths). Games with Steam Cloud support may store data in ~/.steam/steam/userdata/<user-id>/242050/ in addition to or instead of this directory. The app ID (242050) may differ in some cases. Treat backslashes as forward slashes. See the glossary page for details.


  1. Steam Forums: Missing DLC [Solution] - last accessed on 2023-06-02
  2. Ubisoft Customer Service Screenshot - last accessed on May 2023
  3. Assassin Creed 4 Black Flag - WSGF forums - last accessed on May 2023
  4. [GUIDE] Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag - Dead End Thrills - last accessed on 9 June 2023
  5. Verified by User:Suicide_machine on 2017-12-12
  6. Thread: IMPORTANT Assassin's Creed IV Freedom Cry Audio Bug during Combat Forums - last accessed on July 7, 2018
  7. Missing Sound Effects in Freedom Cry (PC) - last accessed on March 17, 2018
  8. Adewale's weapons make no sound - last accessed on March 24, 2018
  9. "Game freezing on black "saving" screen- Please help!" - Steam Community Discussions - last accessed on May 2023
  10. Steam Forums: AC4 freezes but the HUD still okay??? - last accessed on May 2023
  11. Steam Forums Post - last accessed on May 2023
  12. Verified by User:Blackbird on 2017-01-26
    Tested on W10 (1607)
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 (Finally) Assassins Creed 4 Physx Performance Fix!! - GeForce Forums
  15. Even Balance, Inc. - PunkBuster Online Countermeasures - last accessed on 2018-09-04
    "Tue Nov 19 2013 12:00
    Ubisoft has contracted with Even Balance, Inc. to integrate our PunkBuster™ Anti-Cheat software into the online game known as Assassin's Creed® 4 Black Flag.
  16. Verified by User:Aemony on 2018-09-04
    Installed the game and joined a multiplayer session. PunkBuster were nowhere to be seen.
  17. Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag - PC Performance Analysis - last accessed on May 2023