Update 02-08-2010: Since StarCraft 2 has been released, this guide is no longer effective as SC2ALLin1 launcher has now transformed into a handy offline SC2 retail launcher! Just install the retail version with your Battle.net activated and you can use the launcher to launch a skirmish game without login.
Hint: If you still kept/found the beta client and the older version of SC2ALLin1, you can still try to install it and play StarCraft 2 Beta offline with AI, but you can’t enjoy the updates from Blizzard which will improve the game. If you like the game, please buy the game to support the developer!
Previously I had putting up a guideline on allowing non-beta tester to play StarCraft II Beta offline, without actually having to be a part of the closed-beta test. Two months has been passed and Blizzard had released not less than 12 patches to fix bugs and add in new feature (Map Editor etc.), and thus probably the previously linked method doesn’t work well if the game has been patched. At the same time, the famous StarCrack AI has been gradually updated to a very challenging version based on the changes made by Blizzard (7.0.3 at the time of writing). Read on to find out how to play StarCraft II Beta offline without a beta account.
First of all, it is reminded that if you have a working offline version of SC II Beta and satisfied with it (if you doesn’t care about the patches made by Blizzard), it is advisable not to make any changes with it, since the new patches of SC II can reach 1-2GB (inclusive with the map editor which probably you won’t even run it once), but if you keen on playing the game with latest patches from Blizzard, then go on and follow this guide. Though it is worth noting that most of the steps were from Nibbits.com, but certainly the guide below is written in mind for new user, although old user can use it without problem.
Step 1: Install StarCraft II Beta Client (Build 13891), advisable in default suggested installation directory (You can get the client installer in torrent form – it’s around 1.64GB)
Step 2: Run the StarCraft II Beta Client to update the game client. (At the time of writing, the latest patch is patch 12 (Build 15343), and expects it take quite some time to download since the total size can reach up to 2GB) (P/S: Do note that if the game client started without updating, it is worth trying to run the game as an administrator, I had mine updated in this way)
StarCraft II being updated.
Step 3: Download the latest updated Cache files and apply it in the correct directory. (At the time of writing, the latest cache files are patch 11 Build 12938 – it is for better replay compatibility) (Alternative Download Location)
C:\Documents and Settings\USERNAME\Local Settings\Application Data\Blizzard Entertainment\Battle.net\Cache
My Documents\StarCraft II Beta\Maps\
Step 5: Download StarCrack ALLin1 launcher and install it. (At the time of writing, the latest version is 9.4.0 Beta which is to compatible with patch 12)
It is important to take note of a few things about the launcher:
(i) Upon double-clicked, the launcher will automatically installed into the default path: C:\Program Files (maybe x86)\StarCraft II Beta\SC2ALLin1
If you have a different installation directory for your game client, you have to manually move the folder SC2ALLin1 into the customized installation directory.
(ii) The launcher may need .net 3.5 SP1 to be installed in the Operating System (Windows 7 has it by default of course)
(iii) Verdana font is needed for the launcher, thus if you experience crashing upon startup of the launcher, you might need to have it installed.
(iv) If you had previous version of SC2ALLin1 installed, do remove the whole folder first before installing the new version eg. overwriting the whole folder might not work as warned by the author.
Step 6: Run SC2ALLin1.exe from the installed directory or the shortcut created at desktop. If you wonder how does it look like after launching the launcher, check the screenshot below. If you failed to run the launcher, do check for:
(i) In Windows Vista/7, run the launcher as an administrator, otherwise it might failed to run or function improperly.
(ii) Make sure you have your anti-virus turned off if your anti-virus program prohibit it from running.
(iii) Starcraft II game client has to be allowed to access network/through the firewall, else the game will be failed to launch (Nothing to do with launcher, it’s the client)
Step 7: Select the map, choose the race, select the AI difficulty and click Launch. Enjoy your game!
Hope you find the guide above useful for you to setup a workable SC2 Beta offline version. Do support the developer if you really like the game; I had mine pre-ordered from my local retail, and hope you like the game as much as I do.
All credits go to Blizzard for the fantastic game, nibbits.com (the hoster of SC2ALLin1 and StarCrack AI), and everyone contributed for this.
“My life for Aiur!”