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StarCraft: Brood War will now finally work properly on modern PCs

StarCraft: Brood War

For over a decade, StarCraft’s Brood War expansion marked the high point of the series, laying the groundwork for modern eSports. But the game itself has decayed, as all online games eventually do, its parts rusting and becoming difficult to operate. Even starting a match in Brood War is a problem today, thanks to constant change in Battle.net, Windows and networking.

StarCraft sits among the best strategy games of all time.

ShieldBattery is a new server that aims to fix that – detangling the seminal RTS from its ‘90s trappings to “finally see what Brood War is like if things just work”.

Creator Tec27 and team announced the project on the Team Liquid forums, where the idea’s gone down a storm. More than an idea, really: large chunks of the work are finished, and ShieldBattery’s developers are welcoming closed beta sign-ups. They’ll send out invites periodically over the coming weeks.

ShieldBattery’s headline features are support for contemporary operating systems, improved networking, auto-matching, a ladder system, a new windowed mode and flexible chat channels.

“We’ll try to keep the closed beta period as short as possible,” writes Tec27. “So we can open our server to everyone who wishes to play this beautiful game, hassle-free.”

The effort is part of a long history in which Brood War players have enhanced the game’s tools, with launchers, ladders and low latency plug-ins. Even after the introduction of StarCraft II to tournaments in South Korea and around the world, amateur competition and streaming has continued. Did you ever play Brood War?