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Yet Another Starcraft 2 Review

August 3rd, 2010 1 comment

Hi there. For quite some time I have been a fan of Warcraft 3 The Frozen Throne, having played over a thousand games. I have been playing over 150 games of Starcraft 2 over the course of the beta and the days since the release. Here is my contrasting review to all the love the game gets. (e.g. the ars review)

At first: Don’t get me wrong. I like the core of the game very much. It’s balanced, it’s fast paced, it has an awesome soundtrack, it has awesome effects, awesome cut scenes and an ok story. And of course it “feels right”.

Once you are out of the actual playing, back in battle.net, or maybe you just logged in: The pain begins: Where the fuck is the battle.net chat? There is some kind of ICQ/MSN. But people not knowing others, playing the game (as I am), cannot chat with anyone since there are no public channels of some sort (as is the case in every other battle.net game).

More things that are wrong:

  • Only one tactical zerg unit – seriously, it’s only about massing. Forget being smart. Other races have more versatile units. Not Zerg. This my second biggest concern. It really comes down to macroing your queens well and putting as many units to fight as possible (and using the right counters goes without saying)
  • Achievements are just plain stupid. There exists more than 200. One for every single click you make. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t like them. “Wohoo you killed 50 units in 15 seconds” or “Wow, you have 100 larva for producing units”. Things along those lines.
  • You cannot watch replays in less than “normal” speed. Inspection of fights is denied. Highly annoying for the careful analyzer. This was possible in the beta, and is possible in Warcraft 3. There is no reason to switch it off.
  • Zerg units do not make sounds when clicked, they are just silent. Terrans and Protoss are more fun.
  • (My english keyboard layout is wrongly detected as german – just a bug, will be resolved hopefully)
  • In order to watch replays by double-clicking the file, you first have to shut down the game, otherwise nothing will happen. If you then open the replay, you have to first log into battle.net using your password. Useless Annoyance.

My hypothesis is that the chat and tactical zerg unit(s) will follow in the next two releases.

To sum it up: The core game is awesome. But for some (perhaps hidden) reason the game has been split up and annoyance has been added. I really hope that the coming releases will change the picture in it’s favor. We’ll see.

You ask me whether you should buy it? I think you should. The campaign is fun. And online, a world of even more fun is waiting. Do not play Zerg, though! Stick with Terran and Protoss they’re more fun and have the cooler soundtrack.

As a side-note: League of Legends does some of the things important better than Starcraft 2. Try it out. It’s free as in beer and it’s awesome.