You might’ve seen the news this morning that the original StarCraft is getting a makeover, sporting new 4K textures, support for modern display resolutions, alongside some other enhancements, bug fixes and tweaks. For people who won’t be buying the 4K remaster, an upcoming patch from Blizzard will allow anyone playing the original, unaltered version of the game to play online with those who own the remastered version. It also makes the game free, forever.

The patch notes for the game are quite incredible, considering that support for the game has been shut down for nearly a decade. The patch updates the game’s launcher and adds in every competitive mode that’ll be in the remastered edition. It’ll add proper support for the game running on Windows 7, 8.1 and 10, which was a major pain in the past. Many of the advanced features of StarCraft II have also been implemented, like the ability to display actions per minute, or the ability to save and analyse replays of your matches.

The patch will be available on 30 March 2017. A patch for the Mac version will follow soon after. If you’re a Linux gamer running the game through WINE, it currently has a Platinum rating, although tweaks may be necessary to get things running.

StarCraft v1.18a Patch Notes

StarCraft and Brood War will now be completely FREE.

Specific Changes & Improvements

  • Added windowed fullscreen or windowed mode; use Alt+Enter to switch between
  • Added UTF-8 support
  • Added Keybind options
  • Added cursor clamping in game while windowed; unclamped in menus
  • Added Popular Maps to streamline finding games or game types
  • Added options to display actions per minute
  • Added Observer mode
  • Added opponent information when joining a game lobby
  • Added autosaving for replays
  • Added in game timer option
  • Added UPnP support
  • Improved gameplay responsiveness during multiplayer by increasing turn rate to match LAN speeds over Battle.net
  • Improved UI layout in Battle.net sections
  • Improved behavior of available lobbies within the Join game section
  • Improved compatibility with Windows 7, 8.1, and 10
  • Improved anticheat
  • Improved installation and patching performance
  • Native support for Fish

Bug Fixes

  • Fixed palette issues to correct rainbow water, 80s Kerrigan, and other graphic glitches
  • Fixed problems with LAN game discovery
  • Fixed IME support and other text artifacts in Battle.net menus
  • LAN and Legacy Battle.net fixes
  • Valkyries will fire missiles regardless of population size
  • Dragoons will not freeze and require a Stop order before accepting new orders

Known Issues

  • Mac is not supported this patch, but is in progress
  • The profile section is currently unavailable