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According to this StarCraft 2 blog post cheat codes have always been in the game.

However the game is so coupled to multiplayer I don't understand when to use them. The campaign is obvious, however using them against the AI only in "custom games" does not seem to work.

What situations other than the campaign can I use cheat codes?

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The campaign is considered the single player version. Whether you are playing story mode (completing campaign missions sequentially) or loading a campaign mission individually from the archives this is the only time you can use cheat codes.

Playing custom matches against only AI opponents is still considered multiplayer.

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So then why are the cheat codes separated out as "singleplayer" and "story mode"? – Resorath Mar 16 '13 at 17:19
@Resorath I believe it's a phrasing choice possibly based around the practice of loading missions from the archives. – ahsteele Mar 16 '13 at 17:22
also, as soon as you use a cheat code, achievements will be blocked. – Hugo Trudel Mar 18 '13 at 19:05

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