Starcraft – Most famous RTS ever



“Starcraft – A very famous RTS (Real Time Strategy)”

Geez~.. Where do I even start? This game practically marked most of my childhood, back when RTS’s were anew and then genre was getting flooded with the GOOD STUFF.

Made by Blizzard Entertainment in 1998, this baby was compared to Warcraft II for so long, it’s not even funny. People might even go as far as saying the only difference between them is that Starcraft’s a Space Opera setting compared to the High Fantasy one used in Warcraft II.

Sadly, I never played Warcraft games below 3, the graphics don’t appeal to me at all :/

But moving on…

Starcraft was THE  best selling computer and video game in 1998 and was so successful that Blizzard estimated in 2004 that 9.5 million copies of StarCraft had been sold since its release (4.5 million copies in South Korea). Not only is that win, but hear this: All that made it the third best-selling computer game in history (behind The Sims and The Sims 2 (ew) ). It is praised for being a benchmark of RTS for its depth (not that many units, but much added depth to them), intensity (zerg/terran/protoss rush anyone), and balanced races.

Heck, it even came out on the Nintendo 64! Packed with the expansion brood war in 2000.

But of course, who designed this masterpiece?
Why, Chris Metzen and James Phinney of course!

Reporting In!

Reporting In!

As for the storyline, this is the gist of it: (Beware of spoilers)

The plot of the original StarCraft game revolves around the arrival of the Zerg in the Koprulu Sector and their later invasion of the Protoss home world Aiur. After they have destroyed the Confederate colony on Chau Sara, the Zerg are used by the rebel organization Sons of Korhal, which lures them to a number Confederate worlds using psi-emitters to further their own goals. After the Confederacy’s fall, the Sons of Korhal’s leader, Arcturus Mengsk, establishes the Terran Dominion, crowning himself emperor. The Zerg Swarm is, however, closely followed by a Protoss fleet which burns down all worlds the Zerg infest. The leader of the Protoss task force, High Templar Tassadar, later discovers that he can disrupt the Zerg Overmind‘s control over the Swarm by eliminating his Cerebrate servants with the help of the Dark Templar. The involvement of the fallen Dark Templar will prove to be fateful; indeed, while slaying the Cerebrate Zasz, the Dark Templar Zeratul briefly comes in psychic contact with the Zerg Overmind, who is then informed of Aiur’s location and directs his Swarm towards the Protoss world. The Protoss high authority, the Protoss Conclave, is defeated by the Zerg Swarm, along with a large proportion of all Protoss. In a desperate attempt to put an end to the Zerg’s destruction, Tassadar, Zeratul, and the remaining Protoss unite their strengths with human Jim Raynor and attack the Overmind itself. They succeed in destroying it because Tassadar sacrifices himself to destroy it using Dark Templar energy.

In terms of gameplay, that’s where the fun is, read on below.

The unit types available to each race define its racial identity. The Protoss can field powerful and expensive warriors and machinery, while the Zerg count on sheer numbers and speed to overwhelm their opponents. The Terrans are the versatile and flexible alternative to both races, with an emphasis on specialization and combined arms. In many ways, the Terran can be considered the “in-between” race in that they tend to benefit from more moderate conditions, whereas the other two races tend to prefer one extreme or the other. This can make it difficult to create maps that are fair for all races.



Now that is off the way, let’s head on to it’s popularity status!

Even as of 2005, StarCraft is still one of the most popular online games in the world. The game itself has its own culture, similar to Slashdot’s and Massive Multiplayer Online Games (MMOG) communities.

Also of note is the infamous Operation CWAL (Can’t Wait Any Longer). Operation CWAL formed in 1997, as a writers group, in the StarCraft Suggestions Forum in an attempt to “liberate” a final copy of StarCraft, which appeared obviously completed despite numerous delays on the part of Blizzard Entertainment. Blizzard Entertainment has gone as far as to give special thanks to this group in the manual for StarCraft, as well as including their name as a cheat code in the game (typing “operation cwal” during a single player game will dramatically decrease the time required to build units). While not very active today, Operation CWAL remains as one of Blizzard Entertainment’s older and more loyal fan groups.

In the early 2000s, the game became extremely popular among South Korean online gamers, to the point of being exaggeratedly referred to as the national sport of South Korea by avid gamers, and the majority of StarCraft players now come from that country. The origin of this unusually high level of popularity is likely a combination of StarCraft’s suitability for competitive multiplayer and the fact that it was released during the beginning of the boom in popularity of “cybercafes” in Seoul, resulting in a perfect opportunity for the game to catch on.

And to end this small tidbit of a “game-view”, I’ll leave you with some information on Starcraft II:

StarCraft II is the long awaited sequel to the real-time strategy game StarCraft, announced on May 19, 2007, at the Blizzard Worldwide Invitational in Seoul, South Korea.

Rock and Roll!

Rock and Roll!

Development on the game began shortly after Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne back in 2003. Game development is “very far along,” and already playable in multiplayer. The game was still in pre-alpha in August, 2008. Blizzard considers StarCraft II to be a long way from beta and expects it may take “months”; the alpha builds have been released to some other Blizzard development teams and the quality assurance department. Blizzard has yet to decide on whether there will be an open beta or a hosted beta.

The teams still have a lot of work to do on the single-player campaign and on improvements.

Blizzard expects the game to be released faster than the usual 3-4 year period after a game is announced.

The game has no certain release date.

The lead designer for StarCraft II is Dustin Browder.

Now, this is all fine and dandy, but what about the JUICY GAMEPLAY EH!?

Well, here’s some more info.

StarCraft II gameplay will feature the original three races only.

It retains some units from the original game, although some of these units have been given new abilities. Due to story events from the previous game, some units have been phased out or replaced. For example, the conquest of the Protoss homeworld of Aiur has prevented the creation of more Dragoons – the transplanted forms of Protoss warriors in exoskeletons – resulting in the remaining Dragoons to be redesigned with different weaponry and a shield that absorbs heavy damage and renamed to “Immortals“.

The demo revealed new abilities that involve more complex interaction with the game environment than in StarCraft. Terran units known as Reapers can swiftly leap over cliffs, and Protoss Stalkers are capable of short-range teleportation to pursue fleeing enemies. Additionally, new abilities have been extended to structures. The Protoss are able to warp prefabricated units within range of their Pylons, and also possess the Phase Prism, a unit that acts as a mobile Pylon, providing power to Protoss buildings in the absence of conventionally built Pylons.

The number of units in the game will not significantly change. For every new unit added, one “underused” unit has been removed.

Goliath Online!

Goliath Online!

That’s singleplayer, about multiplayer, let’s say the game focus more heavily on the multiplayer aspect, when compared to the original StarCraft. The changes include overall improvement in, a new competitive “ladder” system for ranked games, and new matchmaking mechanics – designed to “match-up” players of equal skill levels. In addition, the replay function, which allows players to record and review past games, will be improved. Resource sharing between allies may also be allowed.

The game is currently set to have eight players.

Blizzard Entertainment intends to make the game fun for beginner and intermediate players, as well as give expert players more depth in gameplay.

From here, you can see the MASS jump from the first to the second Starcraft. This is why I’m waiting for it so eagerly!

There’s more to it, of course, but I’ll leave it to you to search out the information and juice yourselves out, haha, till then! See ya!


~ by sessilu on August 25, 2008.

One Response to “Starcraft – Most famous RTS ever”

  1. VERY nice article dude. I’m impressed. 😀 I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for your blog.

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