Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos

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This page is for the original game client up to and including the v1.31.1 patch. For the v1.32.0 patch and above, see the 2020 reimagining Warcraft III: Reforged.

Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos cover
Blizzard Entertainment
Blizzard Entertainment
Europe Vivendi Universal
Japan Capcom
Release dates
Windows July 3, 2002
Mac OS (Classic) July 3, 2002
macOS (OS X) July 3, 2002
Metacritic 92
Monetization Expansion pack
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Bird's-eye view
Controls Multiple select, Point and select
Genres RTS
Themes Fantasy
Series Warcraft
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos on HowLongToBeat
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos on IGDB
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos guide on StrategyWiki
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos on MobyGames
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos on Wikipedia
Warcraft: Orcs & Humans 1994
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness 1995
Warcraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans Cancelled
Warcraft II: Battle.net Edition 1999
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos 2002
World of Warcraft 2004
Hearthstone 2014
Warcraft III: Reforged 2020

Key points

With the release of Warcraft III: Reforged, Reign of Chaos and The Frozen Throne were updated to the classic mode of Reforged, with a merged Battle.net online multiplayer.

General information

Official Blizzard Store Page For Warcraft III
Official Battle.net "Classic" Games Support
Mojo StormStout's Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne Strategy Guide - Strategy and Game Guide by Blizzard
maps.w3reforged.com - Warcraft III & Warcraft III: Reforged Map Database
Epicwar - Large Warcraft III Map Database
HIVE - A Warcraft III Community Site (With a focus on modding, and a map database.)


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
CD key
SecuROM 4 DRM on Windows; removed as of patch 1.21b, retaining only serial key requirement.
Most copies pre-2007 install on all three operating systems.
Icon overlay.png
Mac OS
macOS (OS X)
The original version is no longer sold digitally as of November 2018 in favor of the remaster.
If a retail copy is already owned, access to the classic version of Warcraft III: Reforged (which allows access to the original Reign of Chaos and The Frozen Throne campaign content as well as Reforged multiplayer) can be gained for free by entering the serial key here on Battle.net and then downloading the installer from here.
With patch 1.21 the game no longer requires the CD to play.

DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne Product key needed for install.
macOS (OS X)

Essential improvements[edit]


Updating to the latest version requires the use of the "Warcraft III Launcher" program. Clicking on "Battle.net" in the main menu will automatically attempt to patch the game to the latest version, and will download and run the "Warcraft III Launcher."

Updating to or installing the latest version requires the Battle.net App to be installed.
Versions above 1.28 will automatically update to Warcraft III: Reforged "classic" the next time the game is launched. Versions at or below 1.28 will automatically update the next time Battle.net is chosen from the main menu.
As of version 1.28, support for the Czech version of the game has been dropped,[citation needed] and new standalone patch installers are no longer provided by Blizzard.
Official support for Windows 7, 8.1, and 10 as well as Mac 10.10 and 10.11 was added with version 1.27a, though Mac 10.9 remains unsupported.

List of 1.27b Patches[edit]

Version 1.27b is the most up-to-date standalone installer version for the retail release, as well as the the Czech release.[citation needed].
The 1.27b patches for a specific language can be downloaded from Blizzard's FTP server using the links below, or from the PCGW download mirrors (Windows, Mac).
Install the Reign of Chaos patch only if The Frozen Throne is not installed.
Patch Language Reign of Chaos The Frozen Throne Expansion
Spanish Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
Czech Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
Chinese - Simplified Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
Chinese - Traditional Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
German Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
English Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
French Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
Italian Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
Japanese Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
Korean Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
Polish Windows, Mac Windows, Mac
Russian Windows, Mac Windows, Mac

Game data[edit]

In-game general settings.
In-game general settings.

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Blizzard Entertainment\Warcraft III\
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X) $HOME/Library/Preferences/com.blizzard.Warcraft III.plist

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Saved Games\Warcraft III\
Mac OS (Classic)
macOS (OS X) $HOME/Library/Application Support/Blizzard/Warcraft III/Save/

Saved games were migrated from <path-to-game>\Save in patch 1.28.[1]


In-game graphics settings.
In-game graphics settings.

Graphics feature State Notes
Widescreen resolution
Native widescreen support added in patch 1.25b, menus and UI displayed at 4:3 aspect ratio until patch 1.29.
Native support added in patch 1.29.
Native support added in patch 1.29.
4K Ultra HD
Native support added in patch 1.29.
Field of view (FOV)
Defaults to 70 degrees.
Toggle with Alt+ Enter or use the -windowed parameter.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
With patch 1.28 enabled by default. Use the -nativefullscr parameter for exclusive fullscreen.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Can be enabled by modifying a registry key.

Only works in exclusive full-screen using the -nativefullscr parameter.

See Issues fixed.
60 FPS
Capped near screen refresh rate when in borderless windowed or windowed mode. Capped by 64 fps before patch 1.30.
120+ FPS
Uncapped when running in exclusive full-screen using the -nativefullscr parameter.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
See the glossary page for potential alternatives.


Keyboard and mouse State Notes
Details can be found in the CustomKeyInfo.txt file in the installation folder.
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
Scroll speed only.
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller support


In-game audio settings.
In-game audio settings.

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
EAX support
EAX 2, Support removed with 1.30 update and replaced with software.


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
American English and British English available.
Retail only up to 1.27b; 1.28 and higher not supported.[citation needed]
Simplified Chinese
Traditional Chinese
Fan-made localization, supports 1.27b, http://huncraft.hu/warcraft3
Japanese release.
Supports the Patch 1.26, 1.27b and 1.29.2. Link to the creator's topic.


Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
Local play
12 Use Nucleus Co-op.
LAN play
Online play
24 Retail release users that wish to use Battle.net online multiplayer must update to the classic version of Reforged.


Protocol Port(s) and/or port range(s)
TCP 6112, 6113-6119
Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) support status is unknown.

VR support[edit]

3D modes Native Notes
User created game profile, (DGVoodoo2) see requirements in the vorpx forum profile introduction.

Issues fixed[edit]

This section may require cleanup to meet basic quality standards. The specific problem is: Some of the fixes may not be relevant anymore as of Patch v1.27a. Confirmation is needed that this is the case. You can help by modifying the article. The discussion page may contain useful suggestions.

Running the game on Intel-based Macs[edit]

Even with the patch, the map editor will not be compatible with Intel Macs

As of Patch v1.27a, the game can now be installed natively on Intel Macs without requiring PowerPC application support.

Windows NT Is Not Supported[edit]

Install the latest patch (v1.27a or above)

Windows Vista, 7, 8.1, and 10 Compatibility[edit]

Official support for Windows 7, 8.1, and 10 was added in Patch v1.27a.
It has not been confirmed if the following issue(s) are still present.

If you can't connect to Battle.net, make sure that you have configured your firewall to allow Warcraft III access to the necessary ports. Windows Vista and above have security features in the Windows Firewall that block certain types of network connectivity by default. After starting the game, press Alt+Tab to switch to your desktop and acknowledge any Firewall popups. Depending on your router configuration, you may also need to set up port forwarding and/or UPnP with your router.

The Frozen Throne installer does not recognize a Reign of Chaos installation[edit]

This may occur if the Reign of Chaos installer fails to deploy its uninstaller in C:\Windows, which is the case with the 2007 BestSeller Series re-release, which has an altered setup. The Frozen Throne checks for Reign of Chaos by querying the existence of the uninstaller file and will refuse to proceed until those files are present.

Place dummy files in the Windows directory[2]
  1. Create blank files named War3Uninst.dat and War3Uninst.exe
  2. Place them in C:\Windows
  3. Reattempt installing The Frozen Throne

Black screen with audio for in-game cinematics[edit]

Blizzard's video codec does not get properly registered during installation on newer operating systems.

Manually registering the codecs[3]
  1. Run the Command Prompt as administrator.
  2. Type regsvr32 "<path-to-game>\blizzard.ax"
To manually unregister it, run the same command but with the /u parameter before the file path.
Alternative solution: download and install the LAVFilters[4]

Low performance in Wine[edit]

Force the game to run with OpenGL rendering[citation needed]
  • See the API table for details.
Run the game in Windowed mode[citation needed]


This fix has reportedly worked well on older Intel integrated GPUs.[citation needed]

Run the game at screen refresh rate[edit]

Fullscreen mode defaults to 60 Hz, even if the screen refresh rate is set higher than that.
Set screen refresh rate in registry[5]
  1. Go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Blizzard Entertainment\Warcraft III\Video.
  2. Double-click on refreshrate and select Decimal.
  3. Change 60 to the screen refresh rate and click OK.
Set screen refresh rate with Special K[5]
  1. Install Special K by following the Special K Unofficial Guide. Manual local installation may work better.
  2. Start the game once and close it to allow the configuration file of Special K to be created.
  3. Open <path-to-game>\d3d9.ini or %USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Mods\SpecialK\Profiles\Warcraft III.exe\SpecialK.ini depending on the installation method you used.
  4. Change RefreshRate=-1 to RefreshRate=0 under [Render.FrameRate].

Microstutter on modern machines[edit]

Use RivaTuner to limit the FPS to 64[6]

Enabling Vsync For Exclusive Full-screen Mode[edit]

Change The Vsync Registry Key
  1. Go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Blizzard Entertainment\Warcraft III\Video.
  2. Double-click on vsync and select Decimal.
  3. Change the value to 1 and click OK.
  4. Run the game with the -nativefullscr parameter.

as of 1.29.2 vsync seems to be active by default, also setting vsync=0 doesnt disable vsync, which probably implies the switch has been deprecated altogether.

Other information[edit]


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9, 11
OpenGL 2 Use the -opengl or -graphicsapi OpenGL2 command line argument to force OpenGL rendering in Windows.
Shader Model support 2
ExecutablePPC 32-bit 64-bit Notes
Support for later versions of Windows after XP was added in 2007.
macOS (OS X)
Initially PowerPC-only until patch 1.21, which converted the game to a universal binary, but dropped Classic support in the process.

Later on in patch 1.27a, the game's app was made 64-bit to support 10.10+.


Middleware Notes
Audio FMOD Dolby Surround, Miles Emulated 3D and Creative Labs EAX2before patch 1.30.
Multiplayer Battle.net Classic Retail release users that wish to use Battle.net online multiplayer must update to the classic version of Reforged.

System requirements[edit]

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 98
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium II 400 MHz
System memory (RAM) 128 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 700 MB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia RIVA TNT
3dfx Voodoo 3
Intel i810
ATI Rage 128
8 MB of VRAM
DirectX 8.1 compatible
macOS (OS X)
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 10.3.9 to 10.6.8
Processor (CPU) PowerPC G3 400 MHz
System memory (RAM) 128 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 700 MB
Video card (GPU) 16 MB of VRAM