I purchased Rome 2 several months ago, and ever since then I have been caught in a futile, never-ending struggle trying to get the game to run properly on SLI.
The problem: almost every time I play with SLI enabled, at some seemingly random point, the game's visuals will suddenly freeze up indefinitely on whatever frame it's on--with the sole exception of the mouse cursor. I can see that my GPUs have simply stopped processing the game, but there is no error message or actual crash. The "rest of the game" continues along unhindered behind it. All audio continues, units are still fighting, narrators are speaking, the UI is seemingly navigable and responds with sound, I can use hotkeys, pause the game, and on the campaign map even save the game successfully, etc etc. But the only thing I can visually do is move the mouse cursor until I alt-F4.
Again, this happens at what appears to be completely random times. I could theoretically play for an hour before it happened, or as little as one minute, regardless of what's happening on-screen. The only differentiating factor is that it seems to happen more frequently in battle than on the map; I can often make some progress on the map, but I can rarely finish a mid-length battle.
I have researched and tried seemingly every possible solution under the sun to stop this from happening. The dozens of hours I have wasted on it are downright embarrassing. In that time, I have come across a small handful of people describing this same issue, but no solutions offered seemed to work, and I'm not sure if it's ever been brought up here directly.
I can't begin to list off every individual step I've taken, but they have involved twisting and gutting the game files in various ways, many complete reinstallations and cache verifications, registry hacks, limiting and unlimiting memory usage, SLI profile finagling, Nvidia control panel finagling, running with and without mods, graphics settings/preferences.script tweaking and running at bare-bones minimum, running on every shader model, something-kernal-something scanning, redist and DirectX repairs and reinstalls, defragging and cleaning this, that, and the other, using third-party programs like smartclose and game boosters, completely uninstalling Steam and every single game from my PC, and sacrificing some neighborhood animals no one will miss.
Absolutely nothing has worked.....obviously. The only way around the problem has been to throw SLI in the trash and disable it altogether, which does fix the issue entirely, but introduces another in the form of the game running like crap on my supposed-to-be-SLI-ing system. **I should also bizarrely note that disabling SLI for the game individually through the control panel does not work; I actually have to disengage my PC entirely from SLI, just for Rome 2's sake.
I came back to the game now hoping that the ancestral update and all the minor SLI/driver talk around it might have resulted in something for me. It hasn't, but I've been reminded that, odd flickering and FPS issues aside, it seems that the majority of SLI users are in fact able to run this game without fatal issues like me. I'd really like to understand why that is, so I decided to finally throw up my DxDiag in case anybody reads this, takes a look at it, and finds a thing in red highlighter saying "THIS IS THE PROBLEM".