Failed OpenCore install broke BIOs, can't boot anything

The title pretty much says it all, I'll elaborate on what happened and my setup.

My Setup

I had an old hackintosh running on the following hardware:

  • MOBO: GA-Z97X-UD3H-BK
  • CPU: i7 4790K
  • GPU: Gigabyte GTX 960

I set this up back in ~2015, it was my first hackintosh and I set it up following TMac guides and using the beasts. Also had a second HDD with Win10/Ubuntu.

Drives are getting full, haven't updated in a minute out of fear of breaking my set up. Decided I wanted a fresh start, bought a Samsung 970 Evo Pro. After doing my research I realized so much has changed, and was very excited to get a vanilla setup running with OpenCore. I figured it wouldn't be too tough given my (albeit rusty) familiarity.

What Happened

Followed the OpenCore guide, easy enough. Had everything configured for my set up. Updated my SSD firmware. Good to go with the installer. I unplugged all my other hard drives drives other than the target just to be safe.

Start up my computer with the USB I created, selected the install option, and off it went. Things seemed to be going well, but then all of a sudden the text got all corrupted and a notification popped up with a white circle and cross through it. I wish I had taken a picture, but the corrupted text was illegible so I don't think it would've helped much.

At this point I was forced to reboot, but now it wouldn't load the installer (all other drives still disconnected). Instead it just ended up on a blank black screen with an underscore cursor blinking in the "top left" (looks like the resolution is off, so the top left of a lower resolution).

What I've Tried/Other Details

Troubleshooting time. First I removed the target drive and then tried all the basic things I could think of. Here's a list:

  • Removed everything that was plugged in and reboot (keyboard, mouse, etc)
  • Plugged in old hackintosh drive and reboot
  • Plugged in old Win10/Ubuntu drive and reboot
  • Plugged monitor into mobo graphics
  • Power cycled (unplugging computer, holding restart/power button)
  • Cleared the CMOS using the jumpers
  • Removed the CMOS for ~15 min
  • Combinations of the above

None of the above made the slightest difference. I noticed that occasionally the bios splashscreen will flash very briefly, then continue to the black cursor screen. It seems that after a CMOS reset/long power cycle it's more likely to experience this. Also it's worth noting that the resolution of the splashscreen looks correct. Also, on occasion I'll get a mouse cursor after the splash and/or during black cursor screen, but it will eventually disappear. It responds to mouse movements, but like the blinking cursor, the resolution is incorrect. Lastly, when using integrated graphics nothing is displayed (maybe I need to remove my GPU?).

I'm definitely getting a bit nervous not having access to my BIOs. I'm thinking maybe it's a graphics problem due to the wonky resolution, or maybe somehow my BIOs is fucked up.

Open to any and all suggestions or advice. Feeling really lost in terms of debugging or resolving this given that I can only get to that blinking cursor screen. Google's only giving me basic advice similar to what I tried above. Happy to provide any other details on request, and I also have access to another computer should I need to download anything.

Really hoping someone is out there that can help me. Thanks for reading!

submitted by /u/ewy87
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