The specific crash you have experienced appears to be related to some (sub)system not being able to initialize at startup, in this case related to initialising the graphics. The message box that appeared describes in more detail which particular issue you have encountered.
Error Code 15: S3D::SysD3D.D3D->CreateDevice failed hr=-2005530516.
The Direct3D device could not be created. This might be because your graphics card does not support some features, or maybe you are trying to run the game in a virtual machine. Make sure your graphics card meets the minimum requirements and that your drivers are up-to-date.
One user with a high-end Nvidia card reported the issue was fixed after upgrading to Nvidia Driver Version 347.09 dated 2014-12-23.
One user with a laptop with a dual-GPU reported the issue resolved with the following steps (probably because the default settings were beyond the capabilities of that graphics-card):
- Find the configuration file on your hard drive in "\userdir\<username>\Documents\Egosoft\<steam-id>\config.xml" and create a backup.
- Overwrite the configuration with the example config.xml which you will find at the bottom of this post. This configuration forces the game to run in windowed mode in 1280x720 with anti-aliasing disabled.
- Try running the game now, and let us know it it fixes the issue.
- Your [url=http://www.egosoft.com/support/faq/faq_answer_en.php?answer=610&version=8][b]DX[/b][b]D[/b]iag[/url] report.