Yes, you can also play the game with gamepads. We support Xbox 360 and Xbox One controllers on all platforms. The Steam version supports PS4 and Steam controllers additionally. Just connect one of these gamepads to your computer before starting up the game. The Pillars of the Earth will automatically detect which one you are using and displays the icons accordingly. Via the Big Picture mode in Steam you can also adjust the mapping of the gamepads' buttons as you like.
If you only see a black screen after the introductory Daedalic video, you probably deactivated your audio devices in your task bar. Right-click on the speaker symbol in the lower right corner of your screen, select audio devices and activate the chosen device.
If you do not want to adjust your audio settings, click ESC for two times while the black screen is displayed and you will get to the main menu.
This is a known issues. The following solutions helped other players so far: Loading the latest savegame from book 1 and playing it once more until the end.
Uninstalling the game, deleting all local game files from your computer (can be found here: C:\Users\User\AppData\Local\daedalic entertainment gmbh\The Pillars of the Earth) and reinstalling the game afterwards. You can then download one of the savegames from our savegame database on this website.
If none of this solves the issue, deactivate your Steam Cloud by right-clicking on the game in your library, choosing "Properties", switching to tab "UPDATES" in the new window and unchecking the checkbox on the bottom under "Steam Cloud Synchronization". Afterwards, delete the profile.dat file in the following directory of your computer: C:\Users\*YOUR USERNAME*\AppData\Local\Daedalic Entertainment GmbH\The Pillars of the Earth\Savegames
If you're still encountering this problem, please contact the Support Team via Support form.