The time has finally come: Blizzard is finally revealing StarCraft II to eager fans who have waited years for the sequel. The company said earlier Wednesday that the beta will come in phases, with thousands receiving the initial invitations for the first round starting today.
After receiving the StarCraft II Beta invite via email, I was instructed to log onto my Battle.net account. I created the account sometime last year-- I actually haven't used the original service since the days when Diablo II was still fresh and new.
Currently the Battle.net account is storing digital copies of the Diablo II game, and the original StarCraft Anthology bundle. There's also a trial for World of Warcraft thrown into the mix as well, but that's just bad news for me.
However now there's a StarCraft II Beta icon next to my purchased games. After clicking on this icon, I downloaded the 1.87 MB Blizzard Downloader application needed to actually retrieve the 1.64 GB StarCraft II beta.
While I waited, the program told me it detected an incompatible network driver, disabling peer to peer support. Clicking "more info" led me to a separate window pointing out that I haven't updated my network card drivers in quite a while. Whoops.... glad someone told me about that.
Once the beta finally downloaded, the installer automatically kicked in with a rather spiffy StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty splash screen. Next step: installing the client.
Feeling lazy, I let the installer place the game in the default Program Files \ StarCraft II Beta folder.normally, I don't like doing this-- it makes Progam Files too big when everything is crammed into that single folder. It reminds me of packing a suitcase and you can't get the lid closed. Again, that's me.
Once all was said and done, the game ate around 2.09 GB of HDD space. The launcher finally splashed onto the screen after a quick and clean install process, telling me that I'm one of the first in the world to check out Battle.Net 2.0 and the next StarCraft installment.
Heck, the only thing I had to do now was press PLAY.