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From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
StarCraft cover
Blizzard Entertainment
Brood War Saffire
Remastered graphics Lemon Sky Studios
Blizzard Entertainment
Japan Capcom
Release dates
Windows March 31, 1998
Mac OS (Classic) March 12, 1999
macOS (OS X) November 20, 2001
Metacritic 88
Monetization Free-to-play
Microtransactions Cosmetic
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Bird's-eye view, Isometric
Controls Multiple select, Point and select
Genres RTS
Themes Sci-fi
Series StarCraft
StarCraft on HowLongToBeat
StarCraft on IGDB
StarCraft guide on StrategyWiki
StarCraft on MobyGames
StarCraft on Wikipedia
StarCraft 1998
StarCraft II 2010

StarCraft is a sci-fi RTS game developed by Blizzard Entertainment. It offers both long singleplayer campaigns and a popular multiplayer mode.

Following the game's initial release in March 1998 and that of the Brood War expansion pack in December 1998, StarCraft received a very large multiplayer following, particularly in South Korea, which affected the longevity of its support cycle. The initial official support period for the game lasted until 2009 and patch 1.16.1, during which time the balancing was refined, the replay system became more reliable compared to the launch version, and new maps were added to the ladder map pool. A compatibility release, patch 1.17.0, was silently released in July 2016, but was not active on the official servers.[1] This would end up being the final patch applicable to the retail version of the game.

The game was re-launched with version 1.18.0 on April 18, 2017, at which time the digital release on became freeware in its entirety. The game was overhauled technologically, using different formats, but older methods of enabling custom resolutions no longer worked and ranked multiplayer access was locked for free users. The game was also refreshed with StarCraft: Remastered on August 14, 2017, which is in essence a paid DLC with graphics and additional campaign visuals done by Lemon Sky Studios, ranked multiplayer access, a zooming function and unlocked widescreen resolution support up to and including 4K Ultra HD. Alternative paid interface skins and announcers were also released, as well as StarCraft: Cartooned, a reskin of Remastered using visuals from the StarCrafts series of humorous videos by Carbot Animations based on the game.

The game is no longer receiving any new content, with the only recent updates resolving minor bugs and implementing map pool rotations to accomodate major multiplayer events. The official map editor (StarEdit) has been removed in version 1.23.0, with the developers pointing to more advanced community-made alternatives such as SCMDraft 2.[2]

Unlike the retail version, the version of StarCraft requires a account and an active online connection to run, with singleplayer content being available offline only if the game was authenticated online within a short time period of the attempt to play without an Internet connection.

General information

StarCraft Compendium
StarCraft section on Liquipedia Forums


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
CD key
Installers for both Windows and Mac OS are on the CD.
Later copies (post-2003) also include an OS X installer.
Disc check removed with version 1.15.2, which is the default included version in post-2007 retail releases.
Icon overlay.png
Mac OS
macOS (OS X)
Icon overlay.png
Free; includes both StarCraft and its expansion, Brood War. Can be launched without logging in to by using the -launch command line argument,[3] but access to Remastered/Cartooned skins is only available offline if a recent-enough offline cookie is found in the game directory.
macOS (OS X)
A free demo version, available from GameFront, is a prequel to the events of the full game and includes exclusive missions.


Type Notes
DLC Remastered unlocks visual and audio upgrades; the Cartooned DLC requires it.
Free-to-play As of April 18, 2017, the game is free-to-play with the original base game and Brood War content.


Type Notes
Cosmetic Remastered and Cartooned are visual overhauls of the client version of the game, and the only way of running that version of the game in high resolutions. Skins for UI elements and announcer packs are also available. None of this content is required for multiplayer.[4]

DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
StarCraft: Brood War Included with the StarCraft Anthology and StarCraft Battle Chest. Now freely available with any version of the game registered to the Blizzard launcher.
Mac OS
macOS (OS X)
StarCraft: Remastered Adds enhanced dialogue, audio, and 4K widescreen graphics.
macOS (OS X)
StarCraft: Cartooned A texture pack that gives the game a cartoon look, based on Carbot Animations' Starcrafts. Requires StarCraft: Remastered.
macOS (OS X)

Version differences

The Battle Chest is a retail release which contains both StarCraft and Brood War, along with the official strategy guides for both games.
The Anthology release from is free as of version 1.18, released on April 18, 2017.[5] It includes both the base game StarCraft and the StarCraft: Brood War expansion. Also as of that version, it requires the purchase of StarCraft: Remastered to access high resolutions.

Essential improvements

Retail patches

The most up-to-date standalone installer version for the retail release is 1.17.0. It was released "silently" and was not enabled on, so many players still used the long-standing 1.16.1 patch instead in competitive play.
Install the StarCraft patch only if Brood War is not installed.
Operating System StarCraft Brood War
Windows (1.17.0) Blizzard FTP Server Blizzard FTP Server
Windows (1.16.1) Blizzard FTP Server Blizzard FTP Server
Mac (1.17.0) Blizzard FTP Server Blizzard FTP Server
Mac (1.16.1) Blizzard FTP Server Blizzard FTP Server



The ChaosLauncher allows older versions of StarCraft to be run in windowed mode along with some quality-of-life features.
It is not usable with the version of the game.
Source code
Information on Liquipedia

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\Starcraft\CSettings.json
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X) $HOME/Library/Application Support/Blizzard/StarCraft/CSettings.json

Save game data location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\Starcraft\Characters\<user-id>
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X) $HOME/Library/Application Support/Blizzard/StarCraft/Characters/<user-id>
Save files can be stored to the server if Starcraft: Remastered is purchased.


Video settings. (Remastered)
Video settings. (Remastered)

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
Hor+. Requires Remastered DLC. An option is available in Remastered to pillarbox the game to its original 4:3 resolution.
See Widescreen resolution.
4K Ultra HD
Requires Remastered DLC; the resolution is fixed at 640x480 otherwise.
Field of view (FOV)
Added in patch 1.18; activated with Alt+ Enter.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Added in patch 1.18; activated with Alt+ Enter.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Bilinear filtering only.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
FPS cap available up to 300 FPS.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
Auto-HDR in Windows 11 works in Remastered.

Widescreen resolution

This hack is not compatible with the latest versions of StarCraft and Brood War.[6]
Do not play on while using this hack, as it may result in a ban.
The singleplayer portion of the game has been reported to have some bugs when running this solution: Sometimes in the campaign, the camera gets stuck and will not scroll anymore. The problem is fixable in this updated version of the Resolution Expander by shifting to 640x480 and then back to the resolution used prior. Some users have reported that the crash that occurs when completing a level in the campaign is still there.
Using Resolution Expander[7]
  1. Download Resolution Expander 6 and extract it.
  2. Edit ResSettings.ini.
  3. Change these lines to the desired resolution:
    • ScreenWidth0=640
    • ScreenHight0=480
  4. After setting the resolution, run InsectLoader.exe as administrator to play StarCraft with the hack.
  5. If an error message appears saying that StarCraft is not installed properly, do the following:
    • Go to <path-to-game>
    • Create a file called scfix.vbs and paste the following text into it:
    • Set WshShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
      set svc=GetObject("winmgmts:root\default:StdRegProv")
      Wscript.Quit(svc.setStringValue(&H80000002, "SOFTWARE\Blizzard Entertainment\Starcraft", "Program", WshShell.currentDirectory & "\Starcraft.exe"))
    • If using a 64-bit OS, use this instead:
    • Set WshShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
      set svc=GetObject("winmgmts:root\default:StdRegProv")
      Wscript.Quit(svc.setStringValue(&H80000002, "SOFTWARE\WOW6432Node\Blizzard Entertainment\Starcraft", "Program", WshShell.currentDirectory & "\Starcraft.exe"))
    • Double-click the file to run it. InsectLoader.exe should now detect the installation.


In-game speed settings. (Classic)
In-game speed settings. (Classic)

Keyboard and mouse State Notes
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
Slow to Fast scroll speed, with 7 steps.
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller support
Controller types


Sound Settings. (Remastered)
Sound Settings. (Remastered)

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Royalty free audio
Changing the language through the Blizzard App. The download is approximately 250 MB to 325 MB for each language.
Changing the language through the Blizzard App. The download is approximately 250 MB to 325 MB for each language.


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
All cinematic scenes are in English and subtitled to their respective language. Subtitles in cinematic scenes can be turned on/off.
Simplified Chinese
Traditional Chinese
Fan-made localization, supports 1.17; download
The original Japanese release has Japanese audio for cinematic scenes and different dialogue than the one from Remastered.
As of patch 1.12.
Brazilian Portuguese
Digital & retail.[8]
Fan translation and full dubbing by TSF, download.


Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play
8 Also supports 4 observers.
Online play
8 Also supports 4 observers.

Connection types

Type Native Notes
Patches 1.18 and above have matchmaking.
For non-ladder matches
Direct IP


Protocol Port(s) and/or port range(s)
TCP 6112
UDP 6112
Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) support status is unknown.

Issues fixed

Corrupt graphics on Windows Vista/7

See DirectDraw troubleshooting.
Fixed with version 1.17.

Crash in Zerg mission 8 during in-game dialogue

Disable audio temporarily.[citation needed]

No sounds on Windows 10

Fixed with patch 1.18.

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9 Alternative renderer as of version 1.18.8.[10]
DirectDraw 2 No longer used as of Windows version 1.18.0.[10]
OpenGL 2.1 In versions 1.18.0 and above, OpenGL is used.[10]
Metal support
Added with patch 1.23.5.[9]
ExecutablePPC16-bit 32-bit 64-bit Notes
The 64-bit version is available as of patch 1.23.0.[9]
macOS (OS X)
An OS X patch arrived in November 2001, but only for PowerPC processors.
They continued until 2007 for both OSes, gaining a universal binary at 1.16.
Support for PowerPC processors and Mac OS was dropped shortly after.

A 64-bit Intel version was made available with patch 1.23.0, but jumped to 10.10 as the minimum OS.[9]
Mac OS (Classic)


Middleware Notes
Cutscenes Smacker

Map editor

As of version 1.23.0, the official map editor (colloquially known by its filename, StarEdit) was deprecated and is no longer distributed with the game. Players are pointed to community-made alternatives like ScmDraft 2, but the last official version of StarEdit was uploaded separately without any guarantees for working with newer versions of the game.[11]

Source ports

Name Description
Alternative open-source engine.
Aims to improve stability and availability on other platforms such as OS X and Linux.
StarCraft support is in beta, can be unstable.
macOS (OS X)

System requirements

Base game

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 95 (Only inclusive until patch 1.16.1. Patch 1.17+ Needs XP and greater.)
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 90 MHz
System memory (RAM) 16 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 80 MB
Video card (GPU) SVGA video card that supports DirectDraw at 640x480 resolution, 256 colors
DirectX 2.0 compatible
Mac OS
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 7.6
Processor (CPU) PowerPC 120 MHz
System memory (RAM) 16 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 80 MB
Video card (GPU) 640x480 display in 256 colors

For Remastered DLC

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 7, 8
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium D
AMD Athlon 64 X2
System memory (RAM) 2 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 8 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce 6800
ATI Radeon X1600 Pro
256 MB of VRAM
Other 1024 x 768 minimum display resolution
Mac OS
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 10.10
Processor (CPU) Intel Core 2 Duo
System memory (RAM) 2 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 8 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce 8600M GT
ATI Radeon HD 2600 Pro
Other 1024 x 768 minimum display resolution


  1. StarCraft Patch 1.17.0 Pre-Release - BNETDocs - last accessed on 2023-06-02
  2. Map editor not saving anymore - Technical Support - Starcraft Forums - last accessed on 2023-06-01
    "ScmDraft is a great choice. Given that there are superior third-party alternatives, we do not actively support StarEdit any more, and in future releases we will no longer ship it."
  3. run starcraft(remastered) without battle net client – Build something really awesome - last accessed on 2021-02-26
  4. "HD and non-HD users will be able to play with each other." - last accessed on 17 May 2023
  5. StarCraft - Patch Notes 1.18 - last accessed on 2018-08-27
  6. Verified by User:Sagacity159 on 2018-01-22
  7. - last accessed on 17 May 2023
  8. TecToy Wiki
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Patch 1.23 - Liquipedia StarCraft Brood War Wiki - last accessed on 2023-06-02
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Patch 1.18 - Liquipedia StarCraft Brood War Wiki - last accessed on 2023-05-17
  11. Public StarEdit download - General Discussion - StarCraft Forums - last accessed on 2022-12-28