Starcraft II's 2.1 update rolling out this week, Arcade and custom games now completely free

This week's 2.1 update for Starcraft 2 doesn't rebalance any of the game's units, suggesting that - at least for now - Blizzard are pretty confident that everything in the game is OP. Instead, then, they get to focus on improving other key experiences: like music and tiny hovering clan pictures. They're also making a big push into another of the game's core components: mucking about. As such, the Starcraft Arcade is now available to anyone who downloads the free Starter Edition of the game.

A patch video round-up explains the various changes through the medium of a wildly modulating voice:

The key highlights are an extension mods system, essentially letting players create mutators that can be applied to any map; clan improvements, including an event system and custom decals; and the option to select the classic Brood War soundtrack to accompany your Zerg-stomping.

As for the now free Arcade, beard owning community manager Kevin Johnson made the announcement in a second video:

Both the Arcade and custom games are freely playable through the Starter Edition, which you can download from here . That means all Starcraft 2 mods can be played for free, including the ambitious and Kickstarter-funded Starcraft Universe .

You can see the full patch notes for 2.1 here . The update will be rolling out for different territories across the week.


Phil has been PC gaming since the '90s, when RPGs had dice rolls and open world adventures were weird and French. Now he's the deputy editor of PC Gamer; commissioning features, filling magazine pages, and knowing where the apostrophe goes in '90s. He plays Scout in TF2, and isn't even ashamed.
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