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Starcraft II Guide

Discussion in 'Guides' started by Daerandin, Nov 2, 2013.

  • by Daerandin, Nov 2, 2013 at 10:54 PM
  • Daerandin

    Daerandin Active Member

    Oct 18, 2013
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    Starcraft 2 is the sequel to the acclaimed rts Starcraft. This game features the same three factions of the original game. The graphics have been greatly improved, and there are sufficient changes to the factions so it does not feel like the original only with better graphics. The single player campaigns are very well done with an interesting story and great interactivity between missions.

    A lot of game content is free to play now, including the original Wings of Liberty campaign. The expansion campaigns must still be purchased, but the base game is now available for free. All you need to do is create a Blizzard account.


    This guide will explain how to install Starcraft 2 using the downloadable installer from battle.net with a custom PlayOnLinux install.

    Log in to your account on battle.net and you can download the installer, make sure it is the windows installer you select.


    Tips & Specs

    To learn more about PlayOnLinux and Wine configuration, see the online manual: PlayOnLinux explained

    Arch Linux 64-bit
    PlayOnLinux 4.2.12
    Wine 2.20-staging

    Setup PlayOnLinux

    Launch PlayOnLinux and click on "Manage wine versions"

    In the new window that appears, scroll through the 'Available Wine versions' box to find '2.20-staging' and click on the right pointing arrow to install it, afterwards it will appear on the right side under 'Installed Wine versions'

    Keep in mind that newer wine versions generally work very well, so if you are reading this guide and there are newer versions available, there is usually no harm in trying out the newer versions. Often there are great improvement, but you should always use the "staging" versions for this game.

    If you have a 64-bits system, make sure you have selected the 'Wine versions (x86)' tab above


    Just close the window. Back at the main PlayOnLinux window, select 'Install'

    Click on 'Install a non-listed program'


    Select 'Install program in a new virtual drive' and click next


    You can name the virtual drive anything you'd like, but for this guide I will be naming is "SC2". But like I said, you can name it whatever you want.


    Select "Use another version of Wine", "Configure Wine" and "Install some libraries" before you click next


    On the wine selection window, select 2.20-staging and click next. Make sure you select '32-bits window installation' if you are on a 64-bit system as it is normally the best practice.


    When the wine configuration window appear, make sure that Windows version is set to "Win7". Then select the 'Graphics tab and click the checkbox for all four options. The resolution you set for the virtual desktop should be your desktop resolution. My desktop resolution is 1920 x 1080, so you can see I have set that as the virtual desktop resolution in the screenshot below.


    Note: Even though the language is Norwegian in my screenshot, the layout will look the same for you

    Next click in the "Staging" tab. Here you should select to Enable CSMT. This will greatly improve the performance of the game, as well as eliminate a lot of crashing with high graphics settings.


    When you come to the selection of libraries to install, select the following libraries:
    • POL_Install_corefonts
    • POL_Install_vcrun2005
    • POL_Install_vcrun2008
    Make sure you have selected all these three before you click Next


    When you are asked to select the installer, find the installer you downloaded from battle.net and click on next


    Installing the game

    The first thing to be installed is the Batte.net client. You can de-select to add a shortcut as it really serves no purpose when installing it on Linux.

    Click on continue


    Next you must log in to your battle.net account.


    The login form does not work perfectly in Wine, but you can log in. Just ensure to fill in your login information in both forms, select to "Keep me logged in" on both the checkboxes. Then click "Log in to Blizzard" below the bottom form.

    Note: If you can't seem to type into the fields, press Alt-Tab to switch focus to another window, then Alt-Tab back to the login window.


    If you have an authenticator for your account, you will see this next. As with the login form, the "Approve" button does not work in the app. So you will need to click on "Use Authenticator Security Code"


    Here you can type in the security code from your Blizzard authenticator app. Note that you must select "Enter code manually" in the app.

    Note: If you can't seem to type into the fields, press Alt-Tab to switch focus to another window, then Alt-Tab back to the login window.


    Now the Blizzard app will launch. I suggest to not use the Blizzard app in Wine to make purchases as it does not seem to always work properly, instead try to rely on the website for purchases or in-game purchase options.

    Select Starcraft II, then click on the big Install button


    You should just let the game install to the default location. No matter where you select to install the game, it will be contained within the virtual drive, so there really is no point in changing it.


    The install process might take some time depending on your internet connection speed. Once it is done, you should exit the blizzard app so that you can create a PlayOnLinux shortcut. To exit the blizzard app, click on the Blizzard logo in the upper left corner, then select to Exit.

    Sometimes it does not seem to exit properly on its own. If it seems to hang upon exit (keep in mind it may take some time), then you can force it to exit by opening a terminal and running two commands:

    pkill -15 Battle.net.exe
    pkill -15 Agent.exe
    When you are asked to create a shortcut, select "Battle.net Launcher.exe" and click next. You can name the shortuct anything you want, "Battle.net" or "Starcraft 2 " seems logical choices. Next, click on 'I don't want to make another shortcut'


    Now make sure you have selected the game shortcut in the main PlayOnLinux window, then click on 'Configure' then click on the 'Display' tab.


    Here you should set 'Video memory size' to the memory of your GPU

    Now you can exit the PlayOnLinux configuration window and you are ready to play.


    The game runs great in my experience. I have been playing this game for years through Wine and I am able to run it with all graphical settings to maximum. I have played a bit of multiplayer with friends and family, and a LOT of single player campaigns.

    Click on the images below to see them in high resolution

    sc2_18.png sc2_19.png

    sc2_20.png sc2_21.png

    sc2_22.png sc2_23.png
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2017
    vashin likes this.
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Discussion in 'Guides' started by Daerandin, Nov 2, 2013.

  1. TitinRising
    I figured it out. My bad.
  2. booman
    how did you figure it out?
    did you use the virtual desktop?
  3. TitinRising
    Actual I thought I fixed it... but i didn't fix it. They changed how the install works. Its strange. I get a message saying that no game has been found, right after the battle.net desktop application finishes up. You try installing it right now for your your self and see.
  4. Daerandin
    Back from vacation here, I will look into updating this guide in the coming days. Hopefully it does not take much to get things working again.

    Until I get this guide updated: First tip, as always, is to use a newer wine version.
  5. TitinRising
    Im not sure what you mean "If you have a 64-bits system, make sure you have selected the 'Wine versions (x86)' tab above" then you later say "Make sure you select '32-bits window installation' if you are on a 64-bit system as it is normally the best practice, but in my experience this will work well in a 64-bit virtual drive." is it not recommended to use 64 bit at all? Also why should I use a virtual desktop? The problem for me is that the window for startcraft is the size of my screen, but my ui (the top notification bar) covers part of my game, im not aware is there is a way to make it auto hide or if i can just make the virtual desktop window smaller, (Do I need to keep it the same aspect ratio? or can i just decrease the y size).
  6. TitinRising
    Every time. I keep trying to re-installing and every time i get this http://i.imgur.com/fXw3afd.png The black screen is part of wine. This always happens right as i click install after logging in.
  7. TitinRising
    OK so the black screen is interactive, i can see my mouse go into click mode when hovering over certain parts of it. SO the problem arrears to be a visual thing. YES I have tried with a virtual desktop http://i.imgur.com/hkes2hJ.png What kind of components are needed to render (or do what ever is needed) to see the battle . net launcher ? There must be something. Is it web based? Should i install internet explorer?
  8. Daerandin
    You can use 64-bit if you want to, and all my test has proven to work without any issues. I still recommend to use 32-bit since it is still the official recommendation from Wine developers themselves as some things might not work perfectly in 64-bit wine. I can run Starcraft 2 (and all games that don't require Dotnet) on 64-bit wine.

    As for virtual desktop, I highly recommend using it. A few games I have tested would not run without a virtual desktop, and I have also seen slightly improved performance when using a virtual desktop. However, I believe this is highly dependent on the window manager you are using.

    As for the desktop panel appearing in front, this is something I recall being a problem when I used Ubuntu a couple of years ago, but I fixed it by using a virtual desktop with the same resolution as my desktop, which is why I tend to suggest it in my guides. It might not look pretty, but from my experience it has always helped to hide desktop panels so they don't appear over the game.

    I have not yet had the time to test this myself, but I will update this guide in the coming days, provided I have things working well for myself.

    As for the black screen, it sounds like a problem with Intel graphics that I have seen others had issues with. Could you tell me what GPU you are using?

    EDIT: Added a bit about virtual desktops.
  9. Daerandin
    I have experienced something similar myself a few times with some games, but not often. You could try to Alt-Tab our of the game, then select the game window with your mouse. Or you could try to just click your mouse within the game window to see if that help to bring keyboard focus back.

    If you run with a virtual desktop as I suggest in my guide, then instead of Alt-Tabbing, you can just switch workspace when you want to access a browser or such. I almost never Alt-Tab myself, but just run the game on one workspace, then switch (CTRL+ALT+Left or Right Arrow Key) to a different workspace for any other needs. Sometimes, I will need to press CTRL+ALT once after switching back to the game to have keyboard input behave normally. I don't know if this is related to Xfce4 or if other desktop environments would experience similar issues.
  10. TitinRising
    HA im not using a real gpu. I am a in chipset gpu on a Intel Core i5-4200U CPU @ 1.60GHz which has a Intel Corporation Haswell-ULT Integrated Graphics Controller. I have a shity :( 256m memory on the "gpu".
  11. Daerandin
    It is your GPU that is the cause of the black battle.net launcher you are seeing. Do keep in mind that the minimum requirements of this game specifies a dedicated GPU, so don't expect good performance even on low settings. As for getting past the black screen issue, you may have a read on this link:


    I did read a bit on that link myself, and it seems the easier solution is to use -opengl argument when launching the battle.net client, it is mentioned towards the end of the article. I think you can do the same by just selecting your game shortcut in PlayOnLinux, then click on "Configuration", now find the "Arguments" box, and type in

    If it does not work to add it there, then we simply need to make the change in your PlayOnLinux shortcut. I'll help you with that if the above does not work.
  12. TitinRising
    I have tried the arguments box and it did not work. In the link you gave me i was not able to run the 2 terminal commands. I did mange to launch the game. The black screen was only visual. So I let the installer run for a good 2 hours then i later randomly clicked until it launched the game.
  13. Daerandin
    I should probably have mentioned it already, but never just copy and paste terminal commands from online without knowing exactly what they do. This case is not dangerous, but just copying those commands will naturally enough not work as they were intended for use with regular Wine, not with PlayOnLinux which launch its own wine versions a little differently. Furthermore, when using POL your game install is located in a different place than what the linked article assumes.

    Now I don't know for sure if the POL_Wine command accepts arguments just like the regular wine command, but the only way to know for sure is to test.

    So if you want to try and see if you can get the launcher working like this, open a terminal and type:

    The above command just changes the working directory to where PlayOnLinux have all the bash scripts that run when you launch a game shortcut from the PlayOnLinux window. Next you will need to edit the specific shortcut for StarCraft 2, you can just use nano for it, since it is a fairly simple editor. The next command will be different depending on what exactly you called the shortcut that launches the battle.net client.

    If you named it exactly like in my guide, then it is called Starcraft 2, in which case you will need to type:

    nano Starcraft\ 2
    The backslash is important, otherwise the space in the name will not be understood. So if you named the shortcut differently, just remember to use a backslash before any spaces in the name. You can also start typing the first 3-4 letters in the name, and then just hit TAB on your keyboard to have it automatically fill in the rest.

    You are going to see a text file looking something like this:

    [ "$PLAYONLINUX" = "" ] && exit 0
    source "$PLAYONLINUX/lib/sources"
    export WINEPREFIX="/home/wolf/.PlayOnLinux//wineprefix/starcraft2"
    export WINEDEBUG="-all"
    cd "/home/wolf/.PlayOnLinux//wineprefix/starcraft2/drive_c/./Program Files (x86)/Battle.net"
    POL_Wine 'Battle.net Launcher.exe' "$@"
    You only need to make one change, and that is on the final line. Simply change the final line to look like this:

    POL_Wine 'Battle.net Launcher.exe' -opengl "$@"
    Then just save and exit. Now you can try running the game again, and hopefully this should let you see the battle.net launcher properly. I can't know for sure since I do not have a computer here with the Intel graphics that I can test on, but it should work according to all information I have available.
  14. kappekoff
    Using several desktops and scrolling between them with ALT+CTRL+UP/DOWN ARROWS seems to be a working workaroud. Im using arch linux with gnome desktop so dont think the problem has anything to do with Xfce4. Thanks for the response and suggestion for workaround.
  15. Daerandin
    Seeing that this guide still works I will wait with updating it for now. I still suggest using a much newer wine version as it will give greater performance.

    I intend to update this guide when the Wine devs release a new stable Wine version as the stable wine version does not get feature updates and tend to remain the primary wine version for many distros for a long time.
  16. BlackSymphony
    I got on these forums just to thank you for your kind Work. I run Kubuntu 15.04 and could not make it work previously until I found your solution, so many thanks to you Daerandin!
    There is only one glitch that I get and it's the one I'm posting here: after the destruction of a construction, I get black squares instead of the burned ground. Any idea?
    And I was also wondering how you got all that knowledge working with Wine. I mean, how could you possibly determine which version of Wine would work for a particular game? Trial and error? I don't believe it so. What is it ?
    Thanks again!
  17. Daerandin
    The Wine version used for our guides is generally one of the newest versions available at the time of writing the guide. So very often, using a newer wine version will work quite well. And yes, it is generally just trial and error to get things working, and a bit of googling too to see if anyone else have had luck getting a game running.

    I have not seen the black squares instead of normal ground textures, it might be related to your hardware. You could try to set GLSL support back to enabled. This is an option that often results in smoother performance, but with most newer wine versions it does not seem to make much of a difference. So there are basically two things you can try to fix your issue with the black squares. You can try to set GLSL support to enabled, or you can try to use a newer wine version.
  18. BlackSymphony
    Ok, in the first place I thought that earlier versions of Wine might be needed instead of newer versions in order to work properly on different version of some games. I thought that some software might not have been upgraded having Wine in mind and therefore make changes that would be incompatible with newer versions of Wine.
    Anyways, I'll look at it and post results here. But however, your thread got me able to fix sound on Myst IV: Revelation that wasn't playing on my system. And I realised that having an integrated graphic card is different. To start, you leave the settings of the graphic card to default. I had set my settings ajusted to yours in the first place which caused me problems.
    Anyway, thanks again!
  19. BlackSymphony
    Ok, I lowered the video settings and no more glitches so far.
  20. booman
    I hate it when that happens :mad:
    Some game refuse to run at high settings and others run just fine.
    I had a similar problem with Bioshock 2. Low settings ran fine, but looked horrible, high settings... crash!

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