Constant crashes on Mac -- workaround found

Level 1
10 months ago

TLDR: If your Mac constantly crashes, try turning off "Volumetric Lighting Quality" in the graphics settings.

I had a problem with constant kernel panic crashes on my MacBook Pro running Catalina. It happened regularly when loading a saved game, often when loading new areas, and occasionally at other random times. I followed Marmot's advice on another thread and set all my graphics to the lowest settings, then gradually turned everything back on. Turns out the problem is the Volumetric Lighting Quality setting. With that setting off I can increase the resolution and bring all the other graphics settings back to the medium quality level defaults with no crashes. But turning on Volumetric Lighting Quality brings back the crashes. Turning it off is a workaround that works fine for now, but it's something the developers should look into.

This is not a graphics performance issue. Even when the crashes occured, I wasn't getting any lags, freezes, or other symptoms of sluggish processing. And I've now brought the quality back up (except volumetric lighting) with no performance issues. The crash is a kernel panic crash (that crashes the whole machine not just Solasta) which is unusual on a Mac and points to a programming and/or OS issue rather than a performance issue. Perhaps related to the GPU?

9 months ago

thank you for the tip since I deactivated "Volumetric Lighting Quality" I no longer have a crash problem

Level 2
9 months ago

Glad the advice helped!

I finally got my new MBP M1 Max in - running Solasta through Rosetta2 at Ultra quality (including Volumetric Lighting Quality at High!) - I get between 55-65 fps under Monterey (MacOS 12.0.1). Remarkably pleased with the results, I am.


If you're on M1 Apple silicon, I recommend upgrading to Monterey.

Model Name:    MacBook Pro

Model Identifier:    MacBookPro18,2

Chip:    Apple M1 Max

Total Number of Cores:    10 (8 performance and 2 efficiency)

Memory:    32 GB

Nullus est liber tam malus ut non aliqua parte prosit. Jus' sayin.'

Level 2
5 months ago

Thanks for the profoundly helpful information.

There's an additional problem for me, though. I have to disable Volumetric Lighting Quality EVERY SINGLE TIME I start the game. Somehow the change doesn't stick. Maybe the devs should have a look into this mac-exclusive bug.

Remember: Imagination defines the limits of our realities!