StarCraft 2 Quick Glance Review
11 years later..... It's about damn time
Well as far as strategy games go, the original Starcraft game released back in 1999, is widely known to be one of the best RTS games every made and even holds very high on the top PC games ever made. The balance of three different races made up for a great experience with each race having their own strengths and weaknesses. The general fine tuning of the game was also said to revolutionize the genre and bring RTS games to a full blown place in video game competition. In other words, Starcraft kicked some asses and still continues to do so around the world. Fast forward 11 years.... yes 11 years, and we now have Starcraft 2. So after this long period of time does the sequel still make all the South Koreans go nuts and quit their lives in order to better their skills? I absolutely think it does. So let's wall up and bunker down and I'll give you a quick review on my take of this very addicting game.
So is it any good?
RTS (real time strategy) games have always held a soft spot in my heart for making me constantly keep in mind of everything going on and letting me plan out situations and execute them with either precision or a big can of FAIL. Luckily Starcraft 2 has been able to put everything I like into a RTS game and bump it up another few steps and really add a lot of depth into each situation going on. Although I have no finished the game I think I am able to give a quick review on what I have experienced and tell you what is good and what is bad. In the words of my good friend Mario, HERE WE GOOOO.
Plot--- I won't go deep into the plot but it takes place 4 years after the original and if you played the 1st one then it makes more sense but basically you helped put into power a bad guy who is a dictator and you are trying to free the people from this jerk. In doing so you start up the war again between the Terran, Zerg, and Prottoss which is like galactic war #2. To make things worse your old sweet heart is back and he is pissed off and also a Zerg now. So you fly around the galaxy finding shiny rocks, battling aliens, and take out an evil and corrupt dictator all in time to hopefully get back for your favorite episode of South Park, but i am sure they have it on Netflix anyways. They do a good job of keep you engaged with the plot and the time between each mission you are on a space ship and get to explore it and go deeper into the lives of you and the crew.
Game play--- Well this is the most important part of any game and Starcraft 2 has done an amazing job of having an overall great experience. They made the game very accessible to new players of the genre with the starting mission type which incorporate training into just regular game play. As you progress it gets harder and you are given more options to bring down the evil bad dudes. The different types of units range from basic riffle infantry, big bad dudes, tanks, snipers, and a vast array of different air units all with strengths and weakness always pushing the tricky game of rock paper scissor. Each unit can also be beefed up with different upgrades which can really tilt the way the game is played.
The constant need for resources to feed your army is also usually easier said then done. You basically have to worry about having enough minerals, gas ( I have plenty), and space to build new buildings which in turn build up a bigger badder army. You constantly have to be using your little workers to gather more resources and sometimes you have to move your entire base to help cover your appetite for total destruction.
Each mission has it's main objectives which surprisingly Blizzard does a great job of changing each type of mission into something new. It isn't always just, build up big buys, point big guys at bad guys and press BOOM. So far I have played rescue missions, survival missions, kill a bunch of bad guy missions, gather a lot of shiny rock missions, destroy a lot of train missions, kill walls and bad guys with really big laser missions, and send in a covert group of soldiers to kill a bunch of guys without having any back up. The variety is actually really nice, I have more to do but its nice having to constantly change your tactics from mission to mission and having to build a certain type of plan to accomplish each tasks. Each mission also has its fair share of side-missions that if you succeed in doing gives you a nice little bonus to help you out down the road.
So we have covered unit types, missions, gathering...what else is there for game play? I guess not really anything else, overall they do a really good job of balancing all the game play and turn the huge chaos into a beautifully battle plan that hopefully when you execute it will turn out how you planned. If not you can be sure that the AI will capitalize on what you missed and give you all kinds of hell.
Which race is supreme
Who do you like to be in Starcraft?
MP and Technical
Multiplayer-- Blizzard did an amazing job with the MP for Starcraft 2. They used their battle.net system and fully integrated it into the game with so much depth you will spend a good amount of time just going through everything that is available to master. When you load up the MP screen you can jump right into a quick match up game ranges from 1v1-3v3 and free for alls. You can either play against real people (probably Koreans, they love this game), or the AI which is actually pretty hard if you are new to the game. So that might sound pretty bland but actually Blizzard incorporated a nice league and ladder type of experience where you go up and down ladders depending on how good you which if you become really good then you get put into leagues to play against other big dogs. The stat tracking is really in depth as well where you can see how much you spend on everything, time in which you do stuff, and even shows you a build order if you wish to mix up what order you build stuff to utilize your skills accordingly. The games I have played have always been fun and I often times lose myself to the time. It is a constant battle to get more resources and build up units faster than the enemy and try to out smart them which can be harder than you think. Overall the MP experience I can see it lasting for a really long time and I look forward to nerding it up more and more with it.
Graphics and Sounds-- Ok well this could be the boring part, that's why its at the end. I'll make it short. The graphics are I would say pretty good for an RTS. They did a good job of balancing performance and visual style. There can be a ton of stuff going on and I don't notice any drop in performance. People with lower end PC's should be able to rock this game no problem. I never saw any horrible clipping issues or units getting stuck in rocks. The cinematics are great to watch and often times have humor and build more story and connection with the people. When stuff builds up its nice to see the buildings look like they are being constructed and you can see the upgrades on your units.The sound's are good, there really isn't much to say about sounds I don't think..... pew pew... boom.
Closing comments-- Overall Starcraft 2 is an amazing game. They really did a good job of nailing each part of the game down and balancing everything out. It will be nice to see the expansion packs come out for this and even build on the game more. I highly recommend this game and really the only negative thing I can say about it is that is took 12 years and that its 60 bucks, it seems everyone is going up to 60 bucks for a game now....sucks. I forgot to mention the great packaging, it came with a little notepad and some free passes for friends. Anyways, if you don't have it, go buy it, if you have it, go play it.