510 of 581 people found the following review helpful
WHAT'S THE FREQUENCY, KERRIGAN?,
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This review is from: Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty (Mac/PC DVD-ROM) (Computer Game)
One can only respect BLIZZARD for not setting a release date before they knew they could meet it. No matter that this was the most awaited game for over a decade, they would release it "whenever it would be ready". Well, it is ready, it is here and it rocks. Too bad they kicked the respect bucket in the end. But first things first.
THE GOOD OLD GAMEPLAY GETS THE CIGAR
Seasoned and new gamers alike will appreciate the simple yet highly enjoyable gameplay. The factions are well balanced and the units perfectly valued. You gather minerals and vespene gas, you build your defenses, you upgrade, you expand, you gather your forces - and you unleash hell. Repeat as needed until satisfied.
STARCRAFT: THE QUICKENING
The game is much faster than the original. Resource gathering, building, researching and expanding all go faster now. This is something that will appeal to most and I for one liked it. It conveys an enjoyable sense of urgency, adding to the immersion. And because the game is richer and deeper, the tension just keeps mounting.
The game designers either enjoyed STARSHIP TROOPERS one times too many or they are fond of killer bees documentaries. Either way, be prepared to have to deal with a lot of swarming enemies! The plains shall be soaked in Zerg blood leaving you with a thick metallic aftertaste of accomplishment.
SPACE. SPACE IS BEAUTIFUL
Visually this game is GORGEOUS. It looks like C&C4 was supposed to (but failed miserably). The units are detailed in design yet clearly discernible whereas the environments are superbly done (although not that variable). True, I could do with somewhat more realistic graphics but I can see that this could only be done at the expense of clarity when the number of units rises. What needs a bit getting used to is how some of the buildings do not look that different. No complaints about how they look but one can easily confuse them and build the same building twice.
COME FOR THE VESPENE GAS. STAY FOR THE STORY
The story picks up just where SC-BROODWAR left off. Following each mission nicely done videos move the single player story along (no spoilers, not to worry) that, although we are given the illusion of choosing between different paths, apparently they converge towards a predestined end.
DAMN IT JIM, WHERE IS THE REST OF THE GAME?
Why only 3 stars then? Well, in a nutshell: GREED.
Apparently ACTIVISION's influence is not very healthy to customer relations. Together with BLIZZARD they are trying to turn the StarCraft franchise into yet another World of WarCraft phenomenon - and, at the same time, using STARCRAFT II as the vehicle, turn BattleNet into the new STEAM. Unfortunately this results in a barely palatable product and using your fan-base to advance your corporate ambitions is always tacky.
Although priced even more than a full premium game, this is not a complete STARCRAFT sequel. You would not know this by its price-tag(!) but this is only A...THIRD of the game, the first part of three: you can only play the Terran campaign. The Zerg and the Protoss campaigns will be released independently later (and priced as if they were full games, one could safely bet).
To add insult to injury, one has to keep spending even more money if he wants any "premium maps" and "premium content" sold only via the BattleNet. Since this is a game that will be played mostly online don't be quick to dismiss this if you have a competitive streak.
OK, LET'S NOT TALK ABOUT IT - BUT THERE IS A HYDRALISK IN THE ROOM, ISN'T THERE?
Much more serious is the NeverLettingGo-OnLineActivation requirement. The game will ask for activation during installation, which also includes signing up to BattleNet (and, yes, this means that even this expensive game never becomes yours to keep). But that is not all: a periodic OnLine confirmation is also required EVERY THIRTY DAYS, FOREVER. You can play offline but no more than a month between re-activating.
Unlike the latest EA and UBISOFT flops (which have an idiotic Always-OnLine requirement), with SC2, after its initial Activation, you CAN play a single player game (campaign and skirmishes) without logging on to BattleNet. Only, to do this you have to log on as a ..."Guest" (I know, a Guest to your own game and your own computer...). You will be able to save your progress but you cannot tie it to your BattleNet account later, so any progress or accomplishments are lost for your online Account. After your 30 days are up you have to re-activate once more.
That is why a Broadband Internet connection is included in the minimum system requirements. You can decide if this bothers you.
SORRY TO BRING THIS UP BUT SPAWN SEEMS TO BE MISSING FROM MY COPY...
Remember how we could take our original STARCRAFT CD to a gathering of friends, Spawn it on everyone else's PCs and start a LAN party? Now one can play with his friends only through the BattleNet - and the Spawn function has been eliminated! Yes, that means each one of your friends now has to have his own original copy of the game!
The brass at the top conveniently forgets that the ability to Spawn games was the main reason both STARCRAFT and DIABLO acquired such huge fan-bases.
Et tu, BLIZZARD?
This is a good game, one I think we will be enjoying for years - or for as long as BLIZZARD shall allow us to do so. However, I had higher hopes for BLIZZARD's respect to its own customers.
Tracked by 10 customers
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Showing 1-10 of 57 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 27 Jul 2010 23:33:16 BDT
> "premium units" sold only via the BattleNet.
Where did you get this information ? Premium maps might make sense. Premium units? In Multiplayer ?
Does not make any sense at all. Especially since I played the beta - nothing indicated premium units in MP.
Posted on 28 Jul 2010 02:48:20 BDT
Mr. D. C. Morgan says:
First of all, there is NO premium content downloadable at launch. Blizzard have said there "MAY" be premium content at a later date, but this will only be maps that have passed rigorous quality and balance testing. Theyve even said that WC3s DOTA mod would not pass the quality threshold needed for SC2.
Second of all, moaning that you can't copy the game for other people is just moaning that you can't pirate it. People like you don't deserve to play the game. People like you suck the industry dry.
Third of all, the campaign in this game is easily over 25+ hours long, and coexists with dozens of isolated challenges and extensive multiplayer options. The game is huge, much bigger than other so-called AAA releases like the pathetically anorexic COD:MW2. Don't try and lie by saying that it's a third of a complete game. Any idiot who plays it can see just how much content there is, and Blizzard have always said that it will receive 2 expansion packs at a later date from the Protoss and Zerg perspective. 25+ hours campaign, 30+ hours challenges, at least another 50+ hours to get the achievements, and a complete and endless amount of fun from multiplayer...
You just sound like a bitter little pirate p*ssed off that he can't copy his game and pass it around.
In reply to an earlier post on 28 Jul 2010 06:58:16 BDT
Last edited by the author on 29 Jul 2010 13:47:22 BDT
If Spawning a game you consider "pirating" it, you should address your complaints to BLIZZARD I am afraid. Pirates did not come up with this idea, BLIZZARD did. Both the original STARCRAFT and DIABLO could be Spawned - and great part of their phenomenal success is due to this feature.
Now, time will tell who is right and who is wrong on the Premium market. I am a seasoned gamer and have seen this beautiful artform got from its golden age to a steep decline because of corporate greed. Care to count how many DLCs DRAGON AGE or MASS EFFECT 2 now have? This is the trend that will be followed - and a greater fan-base means less shame in exploiting them.
Finally, which words in my review you found too long to understand? I never said that the game was "short". I clearly said that, because one can play ONLY the Terran campaign (and the other two will be released later independently), the game is only one third of the expansion. And that is accurate.
If in a C&C game we could only play the GDI faction campaign but not the Nod campaign, it would be half a C&C game - no matter how many GDI missions there were.
You just sound like an overworked BLIZZARD/ACTIVISION shill who got short-strawed to defend the game on Amazon. Is the company in fear of SC2 becoming the new SPORE?
In reply to an earlier post on 28 Jul 2010 07:10:59 BDT
Mr. A. P. Wildman says:
At the end of the day mate, you get what you pay for. If they spend all this time developing a great game and then spend time developing and testing new maps, is it really that bad to pay a few extra ££ for it. Games developers can't work without money and this market is costing more and more. You mention EA but its poor to compare them because EA will rush a game out to make money and put two fingers up to the fans, at least Blizzard spend the time polishing the game. If that means I pay an extra £10 at release and then an additional £5 here and there for maps so be it.
I work in industry and we have to pay thousands every year for software licenses, but we do it gladly because in exchange you get quality and full support. This is no different. If the game was £10 on release and all future maps were free, they would be poor quality.
Nothing is free...you should remember that...
In reply to an earlier post on 28 Jul 2010 07:27:17 BDT
Last edited by the author on 28 Jul 2010 10:57:51 BDT
There have been complaints about value and respect but I doubt anyone asked for anything to be free. Where did you conclude that from? In fact, I doubt that you can find anyone more considerate of the labor of people working on intellectual property products than me.
If you work in the industry you should know better than most of us what kind of games were released, say, a decade ago and if such marketing shenanigans could be allowed to pass. IT connections were sluggish back then but everyone had an email address - yet no publisher/developer ever dared tie the game they sold to you to a perpetual monthly re-activation (with monthly reactivation codes).
And, unfortunately, you do not always get what you pay for. There have been quite a few overhyped and expensive lemons. This game is very good indeed. It is not its price most of us are complaining about. Sure, it is more expensive than most of the games released but if that extra £10 is really too steep one can always wait for a couple of months when it will market-corrected downwards.
It is the sense that fans are herded and corralled and about to start getting milked that most of the complaints are all about.
Nothing is without consequences...pass it on...
Posted on 28 Jul 2010 10:22:14 BDT
J. Potter says:
In reply to an earlier post on 28 Jul 2010 12:05:02 BDT
Wil Taylor says:
I must admit some confusion in relation to your angst about the fact that you can only play the Terran campaign as a major disapointment. If Blizzard had never stated that this is what they had always planned to do and given reasons for it and you had then installed the game and found to your dismay that you couldn't play all the campaigns then I would understand your feelings. This however is not the case, Blizzard have been open about this from the beginning and you would have known about this prior to purchasing it. So you are reviewing about a feature not being in the game that everyone knew and accepted was not going to be in the game.
Myself I eagerly await the expansions with the confidence that they will be done as impeccably as I am finding that this one is.
Posted on 28 Jul 2010 15:03:49 BDT
Mr D.K Lind says:
It baffles me how you can complain this game is only a third of a full release when Blizzard stated right from the beginning that's how it's going to be. Not as much baffling, but amusing, how you complain about "premium maps and units" when there are none.
Pray tell, are you playing the same game as the rest of us?
Hyperbole rarely works, and when you're making it this blatantly obvious I wonder if you didn't just "review" the game just to get an audience for your whining.
Posted on 28 Jul 2010 15:33:40 BDT
R. B. Jones says:
Good review, but it seems odd that people are complaining that you can "only" play the Terran campaign, as if other campaigns even exist. There's only so much time you can spend developing a game, and Blizzard probably decided it would be more enjoyable to play one long campaign rather than multiple shorter ones. If the single player game is too short or of poor quality, it's fine to point that out, but I don't think it's really fair to criticise it for not having the same missions as its prequel. In my experience, the "campaigns" on these RTS games are kind of incidental anyway, with little lasting appeal and a fraction of the fun of multiplayer/ skirmish vs the computer.
Also, publishers have the right to charge whatever they like for content. No-one's being forced to buy this. Even if it didn't cost more to develop a premium quality game that will be played for decades (it does), they should charge whatever will make them the most overall profit. This is simple economics. If you don't think this is a better deal, at its asking price, than any other game on the market, buy that other game that's better value and pretend this never existed! If you do buy it, realise that it's because you value it more than anything else on offer and stop whinging!
Posted on 28 Jul 2010 17:31:04 BDT
Mr. H Chinaski says:
Splicer, I think you & me come from the same place in regards to modern PC gaming. We both grew up playing games such as StarCraft and Diablo with our friends gathered in one room. Those days are (sadly) long gone. The modern world is a much more suspicious beast and we thusly get treated as criminals before any crime is commited. I've learnt to adapt to this philosophy.
My huge hatred of online activations, limited installs and now the dreaded 'always online' tag is only tempered by my desire to play great games, but I will not jump through hoops and bend over backwards for the privilage of playing them (thats what I thought my hard earned money was for!!).
But I do think this review is a little on paranoid side.
The facts are: we were told way in advance that the game would be split into 3 different games, so you can't then complain after the fact.
the introduction of premium maps/units is only speculation at this point, so you can't castegize the company for greed yet.
the BattleNet service is infuriating but so was Steam until very recently, so I'll be willing to give them a little time to iron out any problems.
I did'nt know about the 'guest' feature, which is kind of stupid, but not something which will ultimatly stop me enjoying the game. To be honest I think now-a-days you've just got to look at the back of the box and decide before purchasing whether the DRM is worth living with to play the game. I personally draw the line at limited installs, but each to their own and all that.