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Civilization 6 loading woes: here's how to stop the game freezing on the now loading screen

Windows Defender and Civ 6 aren't playing nice together for some. Here's how to fix it.


Civilization 6: How to stop the game getting stuck on the 'Loading, Please Wait' screen

While it's been a remarkably smooth launch for a big-name PC game, Civilization 6 has still had some minor issues in the wake of its launch. Chief among them is a nasty little bug which sees the game take its sweet time loading or in some instances fail to load at all. This is a pain, but fear not: there's a simple fix!

It appears that this loading loop is being caused by some shenanigans with anti-virus apps, specifically the built-in Windows Defender for Windows 10. You could just disable the app, but given it's most people's anti-virus we wouldn't recommend that. There is another way, however.

Here's what you need to do in order to get into the game proper and begin building your empire:

Add an Exclusion for Civ 6 to Windows Defender to fix the loading troubles

Windows Defender is useful since it protects you from viruses and malware and all that jazz, but until Firaxis and Microsoft have a little chat about Civ 6 it appears Microsoft's anti-virus protection is getting a little rough with Civ 6's files in Windows 10.

This is thus causing the game to load either for a very long time indeed or perpetually. Here's how to add an exclusion for Civ 6 to the app so it leaves you alone:

  • Hit the Start Menu, then Settings, then Update & Security, then Windows Defender
  • You don't need to hit the button to open the full app on this screen, so ignore that
  • Instead, scroll down and find a header titled 'Exclusions'.
  • Hit Add an Exclusion and then Exclude a Folder.
  • Navigate to your Civ 6 installation folder and tell Defender this is what you want to exclude.
  • For most of you, that'll be C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Sid Meier's Civilization VI - or some variant of that depending on where you've told Steam to install games.

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