How To Play Warcraft 3 Online With Friends [Without Battlenet]

June 21, 2024
How To Play Warcraft 3 Online With Friends

Recently, some of the GhostCap community members and my friends wanted to play some Warcraft 3 online (without Battlenet), however we quickly found out it was hard with all the conflicting information out there. 

In this guide, I’ll give you the exact method we used to have 10 people playing Warcraft 3 from all over the world (that even a noobie can follow!). We will be using the example of Frozen Throne here, as it’s the most popular version.

What Is GameRanger?

GameRanger is a tool that creates a virtual LAN (local area network) for you and your friends. This means that to the game, it thinks you’re all playing in the same house, on the same network even though you’re all over the world.

How to play Warcraft 3 Frozen Throne online

  1. Install your version of Warcraft 3 Frozen Throne and update it to the patch you want to play. All your friends MUST be on the same version as you.
  2. Download GameRanger, create your account and login.
  3. Once you’re in GameRanger, click Edit > Options and browse for the game Warcraft 3 Frozen Throne.
  4. Click Browse and navigate to your Warcraft 3 folder and select Frozen Throne.exe
  5. Now go back to the main GameRanger screen and click Host.
  6. Get your friends to search for your game in the server browser, once you’re all ready simply click Play. Once in game, they must select Local Area Network and join from that list.

Everyone who wants to play must follow these steps, but only one person needs to be the host. I suggest someone who lives between all the players to be the host, as this will give you the best connection.


Does everyone need to have the same maps in Warcraft?

No, only the person who is the host needs to have the map, the rest of the players will download it when they join.

Can this be used for normal Warcraft 3?

Yes it can. You simply need to browse for War3.exe instead of Frozen Throne.exe.

Where do I add custom maps?

If you’ve downloaded custom Warcraft 3 maps, simply add them to the folder called Maps/Downloaded in your Warcraft 3 install directory.

Can I play other games online like this?

Yes, GameRanger supports multiple games, so you can play anything that is listed in the application.


I hope this helps you and the boys get playing Warcraft 3 online. There is no need for proxies or any other of these sus applications that are out there, GameRanger is going to be suitable for 99% of normal people who just want to play.

If you get stuck or simply want to play some games, come and join the GhostCap community on Discord


When we started playing online games with our friends, we knew we needed a good game server. But finding one that delivered what gaming communities need was harder than we thought. That's why we decided to start our own game server network.
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