How to Fix Black Screen on Character Select in World of Warcraft

Let there be character selection!

World of Warcraft Dracthyr Race
Screenshot by Prima Games

You’ve just finished all of the household chores, and your spouse has permitted you to play World of Warcraft for ten minutes, but unfortunately, there’s nothing but a black screen greeting you. Here is how to fix a black screen on character selection in World of Warcraft.

How to Resolve a Black Screen on Character Select in WoW

If you’re struggling with a black screen error instead of the usual character select screen, as shown below, here are a few fixes that may help resolve your woes. We suggest trying each of them until one works before going nuclear on your game.

World of Warcraft Character Select Screen
Screenshot by Prima Games
  • Let’s start with the most straightforward trick: shut down the game and restart it from the Launcher. It can sometimes take a few tries, relogging repeatedly, to fix the issue. Annoying, I know.
  • If that doesn’t work, you may have an overlay incompatibility issue. These often cause crashes and black screens, and some of the worst offenders are Steam Overlay and Discord Overlay. If you have either, shut them down.
  • A common trick that every PC gamer should consider is to upgrade your drivers regularly. Your GPU may have an update, so check there first.
  • If you’re savvy enough, switch from DirectX 12 to Direct X11. If you’re already on 11, then use 11 Legacy. You can do so via:
    • Menu > System > Advanced > Graphics API
  • If nothing else works, some have suggested waiting on the character selection screen until the black screen disappears. This can take some time, with some waiting up to ten minutes, but it resolves itself.

And hey, perhaps World of Warcraft has a new update that popped up after you launched the game. If that’s the case, then closing the game should trigger the update in

While you wait, why not check out how you can play World of Warcraft on the Steam Deck?

About the Author

Brandon Morgan

From Company of Heroes to DayZ, Brandon immerses himself wholly in video game worlds, then sits down to write about them. Since 2012, Brandon has focused on providing top-tier video game guides of his favorite games and the hottest releases. The more lore and immersion in the game, the better!