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StarCraft II Can Hurt Your PC, Blizzard Offers Fix

GameInformer reports of several incidents of systems overheating while playing Blizzard Entertainment's freshly released real-time strategy, StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. The folks at Blizzard acknowledged that there's a problem with rendering during the game's colorful and rich menu screens. This particular segment of the game is not framerate-limited and that could trigger serious overheating problems.

According to GI, "the fix is easy, requiring players to add the following lines to your "Documents\StarCraft II Beta\variables.txt" "Documents\StarCraft II\variables.txt" file (nice catch, commenter LegolElf):"


Did any of you know about this? I didn't. If you've already fried your GPU when playing SC 2... well, at least now you know what happened.

28 post(s)
Reader Comments
Assassin8 Jul 30 2010, 05:28 am EDT
Is anyone having the issue where inside the ship the in-game cutscenes play really slow but the rest of the game is fast ?
  Doomsday.: nope!
Shpongle: your proc was damaged by heating spots, did you try a…
araczynski Jul 30 2010, 05:29 am EDT
...same retarded solution as the fix for 7.1 audio setups having no audio: "choose a 5.1 speaker setup instead".

next for graphics problems, they'll tell you to play it in CGA.

lazy bitches.
  Shpongle: agreed, they should make a patch for it
Vodoo Jul 30 2010, 05:31 am EDT
hardware damage huh ?'s not really something cost-worthy so why worry ?

i love it when shit goes wrong for other people. (^_^)
  Shpongle: wow, your life must really suck for loving something …
Vodoo: insignificant. be a bit more pedantic if you want to…
Satanicat: I wouldn't worry about Shpongle that much, Vodoo. See…
Bubu Jul 30 2010, 05:54 am EDT
my GPU (9800GT 512 MB) was overheating and shutting down ..... managed to fix it by lowering the Lights and Shadows settings to High (from Ultra)
JudgeIce Jul 30 2010, 06:01 am EDT
Lost my Geforce 480 GTX to Starcraft II yesterday,... sigh!...
  alex8642: is it seriously completely dead? What happened?
JudgeIce: Replied to your post..
alex8642: I am pretty pissed... who is going to pay for this sh…
Towndrunk: You are, since blizzard aren't responsible for the da…
Fuckd__4_Life Jul 30 2010, 06:11 am EDT
Wow...that kind of sucks. I have only played the tutorial (i am an RTS newb) and had no noticeable issues. No fan swearing loudly or any of that sort. I am going to update my drivers and add the fix anyway.
Vycka Jul 30 2010, 06:16 am EDT
I noticed my GPU was running pretty hot while playing SC2, but not nearly hot enough to cause overheating or damage. I have pretty much everything set on Ultra with some AA, so it's expected.
alex8642 Jul 30 2010, 06:24 am EDT
I turned on my computer this morning and my login screen was loaded with artifacts... I have been playing SC2 nonstop on my Gaming rig and my Laptop so I hope neither are damaged... I have an overclocked GTX 470 in my main comp... So I am running some hard stress tests to see if it is permanently damaged... I swear to god I will be pissed if either are damaged. My friend was playing the game on my laptop for 9 hours straight last night for christ sake... and loves to leave the game at the bridge when hes not playing...
  Un Om Bun: Why overclock a GTX 470 ?
JudgeIce: Got the same artifacts on my 480 GTX after playing fo…
alex8642: why not overclock a gtx 470? Either way I did a full …
Shpongle: i had those artifacts after i played mass effect 1 on…
Vycka Jul 30 2010, 06:44 am EDT
And this, kids, is why you monitor your temperatures and have custom fan setting set up.
  JudgeIce: My card was water cooled when it died.
Vycka: I don't know what happened, then. I have GTX285 on st…
moriwenne Jul 30 2010, 07:03 am EDT
I don't get it, modern cards usually have overheating protection and shut down if they go over a certain limit. How can it just fry like that?
  Shpongle: its because of the game, example, my room temperature…
Barzenak42 Jul 30 2010, 07:14 am EDT
This is a pretty big Blizz Blunder
Mr. Furious Jul 30 2010, 07:21 am EDT
I found 3 of those files in the Starcraft 2 folder. Do a search and just to be safe, add those lines to all of them.

Nvm, the other 2 are either blank or don't contain parameters that effect the rendering.
Yian Jul 30 2010, 07:22 am EDT
Maybe people can file a class action lawsuit.
  Shpongle: fuckin aye, i mean dont they test their own games on …
Towndrunk: No point in a law suit, since you dumped those rights…
WeAreAllGonnaDie Jul 30 2010, 07:34 am EDT
Sorry for everyone that bought a Fermi. particularly the 480/470.
Not really a surprise to see them failing already considering:​ia-hacked-gtx480/​f100-takes-280w-and-unmanufacturable/

I'd be interested to see if you guys get them replaced. I'd expect there weren't enough 470/480s made to cover replacing failed ones, seeing as the yields were so low for the GF100.
GF104 looks a bit better (for the consumer, not for Nvidia - they're going down hard by the looks of things).

Really, let me know how you get on with your warranty for these cards.
  alex8642: you guys think if I wait a bit I'll get a better card…
Terminator: I feel sorry for these guys, losing an expensive card…
McSwifty Jul 30 2010, 07:34 am EDT
No-one heard me yesterday.
What's a starcraft?
Vader [STAFF] Jul 30 2010, 07:40 am EDT
Here's your answer :) -​6400
McSwifty Jul 30 2010, 07:48 am EDT
Nah! Still don't get the big deal isn't it just another RTS??????

(ducks the fanboys throwing stuffs at me right now)
  Shpongle: lol
Doomsday. Jul 30 2010, 07:51 am EDT
no issue here! thank God!
Un Om Bun [STAFF] Jul 30 2010, 08:21 am EDT
StarCraft 2 forgot to put cheese in my cheese sandwich !
MrBored Jul 30 2010, 11:59 am EDT
I always have some cheese for your sandwich.
  Morkrul: niiiiiiiiice
Sleek Jul 30 2010, 02:41 pm EDT
I'd say it's due to people playing it for 41 hours straight.
Spuki83 Jul 30 2010, 03:33 pm EDT
Been playin' for 12 hours straight, GPU temp at standard 45 degrees... maxed out, no AA...
Now to go back to the game!
Terminator Jul 30 2010, 04:46 pm EDT
I've had no problems with my HD 5850, the highest temp has been 61 degrees. Then again, I only play for two hours at a time. If I tried an 8 hour session, I'm sure my card would be burning too.
Whisky Jul 30 2010, 06:01 pm EDT
No problems here on my 8800GTS, but I applied the changes anyway.
Shpongle Jul 31 2010, 02:05 am EDT
you know what i just figured out, it would be funny, if in a month or two, when a SC2 DLC would be released, people would install it and it would fry their gpu's because the DLC would reset the values in the variables.txt and the problem still wasnt fixed by blizz :P
JuiPero Aug 02 2010, 12:35 am EDT
The only problem I have is this weird graphic bug. The effects seem to turn into distorted lines like phasers from a star trek federation warship, and annoyingly they multiply very rapidly. I know it's not overheating because I have a pretty swell cooling system and I monitor the temperatures. Could it be because of ATI or my crossfire setting?
uk_john Aug 02 2010, 05:06 am EDT
Agree with McSwifty. After all, at it's core, it is a graphic/camera update with a new story. How could that have taken 13 years?!

I am not going to pay $120 for SC2 with three campaigns when the original offered that for $60 back in the day, so i'll wait for the Gold version or whatever in a couple years. There's no pressure as SC1 is still eminently playable!
thestewieman Aug 03 2010, 06:06 pm EDT
no, no, StarCraft2 can hurt your filthy and never in 10 years cleaned PC....
it's your own fault really, u deserved it.
  candy: I love to explore I recently came across your blog an…


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