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Microsoft's Gaming Zone

Currently the second most popular place to play War2 online.

The Zone is a free service provided by Microsoft where you can play a variety of games. Almost an opposite of Battle.net, the Zone works with older versions of Warcraft 2 only! If you are just looking to play a couple games with your friends, and don't want to waste any money, the Zone is probably where you want to go.

-My best guess is that War2BNE version WILL work on the zone some time in the future.

Warcraft 2 on the Zone.
If you follow the link above you will find something that looks like this:

Your 3 War2 room options
The War2 game rooms

Clicking on one of these 'rooms' will cause a download prompt if you do not already have the required zone files, or if you have an out-dated version of them.

the download prompt
It doesn't take very long, so just click 'OK' to start downloading

After you start this download, you will be presented with this window.

Trust Microsoft?
I think it's safe...

The only virus I have ever gotten from Microsoft was 'Windows 95' :). This file should be good to go, so click 'yes'. Be prepared to face many of these prompts while downloading the required files. It may seem like a mess of files and windows but very few people experience any problems with it. Once you have all the required files you can finally click to enter the channel. Follow the instructions to enter a new user name.

You're finally in!
Here is the main chat screen. It may seem a little confusing at first, but it is really very simple. Check out the screenshot out for a brief explanation of what you will be faced with.

Zone Latency

Unlike playing on Battle Net, the more latency bars you have, the better it is. If this gets confusing for you, then just remember that green is good. You always want to have the color green in the bars beside your name, whether it be Battle Net, or the Gaming Zone.

When you finally join a game,and everyone's all ready to go, the game has to be 'launched'. This causes you to get kicked out to a dos prompt. You will be presented with a 'c:\>' prompt now. Use the cd (change directory) command to change the directory to where you will find War2 on your computer. For example: "c:\>cd games\warcraft2".
Now the prompt should read "c:/games/warcraft2>", or whatever directory War2 is located in on your computer.

Pkt Settings
The zone uses pkt (packet) settings to play the game. Pkt settings are simply the rate at which information is sent back and forth between computers. The pkt setting being used by the host of the game, is the pkt setting that will be used for all of the players. If someone has a game hosted with pkt:4, and you join with the default of pkt:8, then pkt:4 will be used for the game.

A pkt setting of 3 or 4 is the assumed standard for all games played.

What does this mean?

If you are going to be the host of the game, then you have to type in "war2 pkt:4". If you do not type this in, then the default of pkt:8 will be used, and the game delay will be definately intolerable. Make sure that if you launched the game, that you type in 'war2 pkt:4' or 'war2 pkt:3' from the dos prompt. If you are unsure about any of this, then don't host a game until you feel more comfortable with it.

I don't know how to use dos...I can't find my War2 directory?

If you don't tell the computer where to install something, then the default is the directory program files. If you are unsure of where War2 is located on your computer, this is probably where it is. From the dos prompt you will see 'c:\>' . From here, type in 'cd progra~1'. The prompt should now show 'c:\program files>' . Now type 'cd warcra~1' to change the directory to where War2 is located. The prompt will now read 'c:\program files\warcraft 2>. Type in 'war2 pkt:4' and the game will be launched. If that doesn't work, look through windows explorer until you find the proper directory. Use the 'cd' dos command to change to the directory where War2 is located. Then type in 'war2 pkt:4' to launch the game.

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