StarCraft 2

Okay all you Gaming Geeks!!! Get in here!!
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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 11:58 am
StarCraft2 wrote:StarCraft II continues the epic saga of the Protoss, Terran, and Zerg. These three distinct and powerful races will clash once again in the fast-paced real-time strategy sequel to the legendary original, StarCraft. Legions of veteran, upgraded, and brand-new unit types will do battle across the galaxy, as each faction struggles for survival.

Featuring a unique single-player campaign that picks up where StarCraft: Brood War left off, StarCraft II will present a cast of new heroes and familiar faces in an edgy sci-fi story filled with adventure and intrigue. In addition, Blizzard will again offer unparalleled online play through Battle.net, the company's world-renowned gaming service, with several enhancements and new features to make StarCraft II the ultimate competitive real-time strategy game.

Features:
  • Fast-paced, hard-hitting, tightly balanced competitive real-time strategy gameplay that recaptures and improves on the magic of the original game
  • Three completely distinct races: Protoss, Terran, and Zerg
  • New units and gameplay mechanics further distinguish each race
  • Groundbreaking single-player "story-mode" campaign
  • Vibrant new 3D-graphics engine with support for dazzling visual effects and massive unit and army sizes
  • Full multiplayer support, with new competitive features and matchmaking utilities available through Battle.net
  • Full map-making and scripting tools to give players incredible freedom in customizing and personalizing their gameplay experience

Go here for screenshots, movies, artwork, etc.
Last edited by Robot on Thu Aug 23, 2007 3:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2007 2:51 am
StarCraft Legacy wrote:
StarCraft 2 is perhaps the most anticipated game of all time for the PC. Fans of the original StarCraft have been waiting for a sequel to the best seller for several years and have been denied by Blizzard time and time again over the years. Yet the majority of these fans have remained patient and loyal, faithfully waiting for the day Blizzard will finally announce it, not discouraged from the fact that Blizzard decided to create three consecutive Warcraft products and the slap in the face when the company announced StarCraft: Ghost, a third person shooter available exclusively for consoles and excluded from the PC.

However, we must look at the concept of a StarCraft 2 through rational eyes. StarCraft is the most successful Real Time Strategy game of all time, played professionally on an international level. To create a StarCraft 2 makes complete sense financially, since it will immediately sell several million copies once released, thereby breaking the "fastest selling PC game ever" records set by its predecessors Diablo II and Warcraft III. However, Warcraft III is also a RTS game, and with the recent announcement of its expansion set, The Frozen Throne, it appears unlikely that Blizzard will announce or acknowledge a competing product anytime in the near future.

We must also contemplate on the mere idea of StarCraft 2, the game. The original StarCraft and its expansion, Brood War, set the standard for all RTS games to come. It was perfect in nearly every way in respect to gameplay, including perfect speed, balance, and replayability. Regarding singleplayer, the original storyline was perfectly crafted to complement an already outstanding multiplayer game, earning the game much praise for having one of the best fictional universes ever created. Considering these facts, StarCraft 2 will have immense pressure on it to match, let alone surpass the greatness of its predecessor. The idea of taking on a task of such large magnitude is certainly daunting, and perhaps this is why none of Blizzard's teams have stepped up to the challenge.


I have listed the links to 3 insane looking screenshots below:

Screenshot 1
Screenshot 2
Screenshot 3

and if you liked those then you'll love these videos:

Trailer 1
Trailer 2 plus 2 gameplay videos

After viewing all this I seriously cannot wait for this game, it's been a long time coming and it looks like they've given it every bit of attention it deserves!
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2007 12:41 am
StarCraft Two wrote:Starcraft II - 16 Protoss Units

I have compiled a list of all the Starcraft II Protoss Units revealed in the PCGamer August 2007 edition. You can read their description. Many old protoss units are back from the original StarCraft. So far the total of Protoss Units is sixteen.

  • Probe
  • Zealot
  • Dark Templar
  • Immortal
  • Soul Hunter
  • Stalker
  • Colossus
  • Reaver
  • Twilight Archon
  • Phoenix
  • Warp Ray
  • Tempest
  • Observer
  • Phase Prism
  • Phase Cannon
  • Mothership

Descriptions of each unit are below:

Spoiler: show
Zealot:

Zealots are the standard infantry unit of the Protoss. Equipped with psionic blades for melee combat, zealots may confront zerglings and marines in battle with ease, unless outnumbered. In Starcraft II, Zealots have a new ability named Charge with which they can close in on enemy ranged units such as Terran Tanks.

Stalker:

Stalkers are an enhanced type of dragoons operated by fallen dark templars. The Stalker may be used as an anti-air and anti-infantry unit. Stalkers also have the blink ability to teleport and close in on fleeing enemies.

Immortal:

Immortals are effective against Terran tanks and heavy ranged units. Their enhanced shields will deflect most of the damage against enemy units with powerful ranged attacks. However, Immortals are vulnerable to light weapon units such as Terran Reapers and Zerglings.

Observer:

Confirmed to return in Starcraft II, but details of enhancements or new abilities are not yet revealed

Colossus:

Colossus are four-legged mechanical units equipped with two beam guns that sweep through enemy units one at a time., destroying marines and zerglings. They are effective assisting packs of Zealots. Keep them in the back and protect them. Colossus are vulnerable to Banelings and reapers. With their long legs, Colossus units can walk through obstacles and hills with ease.

Phoenix:

The Phoenix are anti-air flying fighters with a fearsome ability. When the enemy brings in multiple air-units, the Phoenix can be used to destroy them by activating its overload ability. A net of beams successfuly wipes anything caught in its perimeter. A vulnerability to using this ability is that the Phoenix remains offline for some seconds not able to move or attack. Enemy units still in the area could take advantage of this weakness to destroy the Phoenix.

Phase Prism:

Phase Prisms replace the Scout transporting vessel. They are used to warp-in up to sixteen protoss units anywhere on the battlefield. Phase Prisms also serve as a mobile pylon to power up protoss buildings when enemy units have destroyed pylons. Phase Prism is useful to build a quick defense at a new Nexus for expansion of your mineral and vespene gas resources. Phase Prisms could be used to power phase cannons strategically placed to surprise enemies in unsuspecting areas.

Warp Ray:

Warp Rays are anti-air and anti-infantry units with additional damage the longer they fire a single target. Warp Rays can destroy Terran Battlecruisers and Heavy Zerg flyers more efficiently than Phoenix units. Warp Rays can be used to destroy enemy buildings within seconds. Warp Rays are vulnerable to swarms of marines and hydras.

Mothership:

The Mothership is at the top of the Protoss tech tree. Only one Mothership can be built at a time. Among its abilities are the Time Bomb which distorts time around a radius, slowing down enemy missiles and projectiles in mid-air. After the field shuts off, all projectiles fall harmlessly to the ground. The planet cracker is a series of energy streams devastating anything it encounters on the ground including ground units and structures. The Mothership has a ultimate ability named Black Hole. It may be used against large amounts of anti-air enemy flyers such as Battlecruisers, and Mutalisks. The Black Hole sucks in all enemy units within its radius.

High Templar:

The High Templar still creates Psionic Storms, but has gained a new ability similar to Arbiter’s Stasis Field. The High Templar can effectively neutralize enemy units temporarily, while your forces take advantage. The High Templar ability allows Protoss players to create blockades as a strategic bottleneck or barriers to stop advancing enemy units.

Dark Templar:

The stealthed melee units from the original Brood War are back. Enemies without detection units will be vulnerable to these expert ground assassins. New abilities have not yet been revealed.

Twilight Archon:

They are the Protoss tank unit wreaking havoc through enemy defenses. Blizzard is still tinkering new abilities for this powerhouse. For now they are as Archons from the original StarCraft.

Tempest:

They replace the old Carriers, equipped with an enhanced shield that activates when its attacked by ground units and defense structures. Tempest is vulnerable against air attacks. They unleash disc fighters against enemies.

Soul Hunter:

Soul Hunters are robotic units that hover above the ground. They are anti-infantry units that suck the souls of enemies. The more souls they consume, the more powerful they get. They fire a single beam at first, and as they consume more souls it powers up to three beams, increasing its damage output. Soul Hunters are effective against small enemy units. Thirteen Soul Hunters can destroy a Command Center within 10 seconds.

Reaver:

The old robotic-slug Reaver unit is back. With the use of a Phase Prism, the reavers are devastating against enemy SCVs and Drones. Upgrade abilities are still unknown.

Phase Cannon:

Phase Cannons can now phase and shift into an energy form, similar to Warcraft III wisps, and move around freely to another location where it can materialize again to unleash its energy blasts. A Pylon or Phase Prism must be within range to become functional. However, if the Pylon or Phase Prism is destroyed before the Phase Cannon materializes, they are lost.

Star Relic:

The Star Relic is a dangerous unit. It can create a cloak field to make ground and air units invisible, and even structures. Star Relic has a fusion beam ability against a single unit. It slowly causes damage until the unit dies. However, the danger comes after … the enemy unit becomes a living bomb, exploding and damaging everything around its perimeter. The bigger the unit, the bigger the damage radius when it goes boom.
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 3:52 pm
Infoceptor wrote:StarCraft 2 Units:

The essential component of any real time strategy game is its units. While Starcraft 2 maintains many of the untis featured in Starcraft, many have been replaced. It is Blizzard's goal that these changes further differentiate the three races, and provide each race with distinct playstyles.

Unlike many other real time strategy games, each faction in Starcraft will not have mirror units, with slightly adjusted statistics that fullfill the same roles. For example, the Protoss Mothership is a juggernaut, capable of taking out armies, and consequently only one can be controlled at any one time. There is however, no Terran or Zerg counterpart to this super unit. They will presumable make up for it with other advantages.

In this section, we outline the units available to each faction, as well as the strategic roles they fullfill.

Spoiler: show
The Protoss:

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In terms of numbers, the Protoss yields by far the smallest army out of the three factions. Even their cheapest unit costs 2 supply, and are thus not entirely expendable. Lacking in the swarm capability of the Zerg, or the range advantage of the Terrans, the Protoss is always at a disadvantage if all the forces on an entire map are pitted against each other.

To make up for their lack of numbers, the Protoss rely on the strength of their individual units, and the mobility of their forces. Masters of Space Time, the Protoss have the capacity to deploy their units anywhere within a friendly pylon, and thus, their entire force can conceivably be around for every key encounter. By hitting quick, hard, and fast, a good Protoss player can compensate for their lack of numbers and economic disadvantage.
The Terran:

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While the Terrans do not have the numbers of the Zerg, and nor do their units share the brute power of the Protoss, a coherent Terran force is the most well rounded and almost impossible to destroy. Specializing in ranged combat, Terran units excel at exploiting various terran to their advantage, while keeping the enemy out of range.

A defensive race by nature, a skilled Terran player can turn a strong defence into a deadly offence. By setting up Siege Tanks, who by far out range all other units within the game, in strategic locations, and by supporting them with well balanced forces, Terran fortifications require enemies to expend double to triple the amount of resources to break. If a Terran ever gets as much money as his opponent, he's almost guaranteed a victory.
The Zerg:

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The Zerg lack the finesse of the Protoss, or the cunning of the Terran, but make up for it by brute numbers and a deadly economic advantage. By far the race that can expand most aggressively, and expend it equally so, a Zerg is able to have in play, forces that not only outnumber all other factions in number, but also in resource cost.

A skilled Zerg player is a master at macro-management, able to built up an economy so strong that he can throw away armies at a whim. Although each individual unit is inferior to that of Terran or Protoss, the Zerg is able to overwhelm his opponents by sheer numbers.
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 4:01 pm
IGN Australia wrote:BlizzCon 2007: StarCraft II Single-player Campaign First Look

Jim Raynor stars in the Terran saga.

Spoiler: show
Blizzard's Rob Pardo, Senior VP of Game Design, was on hand at a gameplay panel for StarCraft II to deliver the most interesting details of the conference so far - the single player campaign. The focus at BlizzCon 2007 with this game has so far been the Terran faction, and so it was the race featured for this walkthrough. Things kicked off with the bridge of a Terran battlecruiser called the Hyperion. From here, players control Jim Raynor, the protagonist of this campaign.

In an attempt to advance their story mechanics beyond what was present in Warcraft, StarCraft, and Warcraft 3, Blizzard has implemented character dialogue trees into the mix. So, instead of just watching in-game cut-scenes (WC3) or non-interactive dialogue panels (SC), you can click on characters surrounding Raynor on the bridge to engage them in conversation. Pardo first instructed Raynor to speak with Tichus Findlay, the Terran marine you've likely seen in the SCII cinematic trailer. Raynor engages in a gruff one-on-one with Findlay, then starts talking with Matt Horner, a more official-looking Terran who doles out most of the campaign's mission information.

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The transforming Terran viking.

Note that Raynor isn't actually walking around the room, it's merely click-and-point. Once actually engaged in conversation, however, the characters involved animate in a lively fashion, with mouth movements synching with their words. Aside from the NPCs, Raynor can also interact with the front window of the Hyperion, allowing him to look out on whatever galactic environment lies beyond. A few computer screens can also be clicked on to review mission progress.

Raynor's conversation for Horner reveals he's involved with some sort of Artifact, which he's trying to sell off to fund his rebellion against the Dominion. By clicking on an elevator, Raynor then descends down to the armory where he's greeted brusquely by an engineer. This is another room, like the bridge, in which NPCs can be talked with and other things clicked on. Raynor turns to Chief Engineer Swann and learns a mutiny is brewing on board, as the crew hasn't seen pay in some time. As the player, you can either choose to pursue this side-story or simply return to Horner to continue the main quest.

Other things to do in the armory include play around with a mechanical lifting claw, which is purely superficial, or check one of the computers to purchase upgrades. The new unlock system in StarCraft II allows players to pick and choose which units and research options they have for successive missions, instead of being fed upgrades over the course of a linear story. Using money earned from completing missions, Pardo chose to unlock the Terran viking, a ground unit that can, with the click of a button, transform into an assault plane.

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Jim Raynor - now with 100% more dialogue trees.

Back on the bridge, a star map can be accessed showing locations of planets reachable by the Hyperion. Instead of a set story path, players can instead choose which missions to take on and complete. In combination with the entirely player-determined upgrades, this should make for a more open-ended experience.

Clicking planets on the star map brings up a detailed description, including a three-dimensional model of the world, the history, environment, politics, and mission description. Pardo chose a planet called Jotun and launched into a mission to recover an Artifact from Protoss clutches. The newly acquired viking units were on the field, and popped up into ship form to avoid some Protoss defenses. Alas, it was all for naught, as the Protoss had the Artifact surrounded with colossus units and immortals, which used their heavy weapons to handily defeat the viking assault.

Pardo countered with cheat codes, instantly warping in thors and battlecruisers, blasting the Protoss force to small, fiery bits. After returning to the Hyperion with the artifact, he found Findlay was missing and then, because that's just he kind of guy he is, decided he needed a drink. There's apparently a canteen in the ship, though we didn't get to see it. On his way there, Raynor's walk was interrupted by the sudden appearance of Zeratul, who warned the artifact had Xel'Naga origins, and threatened the existence of humanity. Drama!

After seeing this little bit, we definitely want more - specifically to see how the various missions are actually structured. Keep checking the video page below, as the whole demonstration should soon be published.

You can watch the Single Player Campaign video here.
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 3:14 pm
IGN Australia wrote:BlizzCon 2007: StarCraft II Hands-on

Impressions directly from BlizzCon 2007.

BlizzCon 2007 is winding down. The panel discussions and presentations are over, and most of the attendees still hanging around are making their way over to the Anaheim Convention Center's arena to see Level 70 Elite Tauren Chieftain, Jay Mohr, and Video Games Live. But enough of that - on to more StarCraft II details.

We've been playing on and off during the show and have been having a great time. The game has an old-school StarCraft feel, but the new units, tech trees, and added abilities make it feel like more of a sequel than a StarCraft 1.5, as some described it when it was announced this past May.

Further down the page you'll find plenty of details on the Terran faction and our general impressions, but right now it's time for Protoss specifics. On the Protoss side, the 20 minute skirmish starts out with two gateways, which are production structures that warp in zealots, stalkers, stasis orbs, immortals, and dark and high templar. The zealots, as you probably know, are the Protoss' primary melee unit. Their psi blade attacks, armor, and shields can be upgraded at a forge, another structure that was already on the field at the demo's beginning. Stasis orbs are a support unit capable of slowing the movement and attack of an enemy, but can't be warped in until a cybernetics core is up and running.

Spoiler: show
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The cybernetics core is the key structure in the tech tree, since its construction unlocks most other advanced production facilities, as well as allows you to upgrade armor and weapons for air units. One such unlocked structure is the twilight council, through which you can put immortals on the field as well as open up a templar archive to create high templar units and dark obelisks for dark templar. The twilight council allows for some particularly important upgrades, such as the zealot charge ability, which makes the melee units actually sprint once they're within close range of an enemy. For stalkers, a ground-based tank-like unit that can attack ground and air targets, you research the blink ability here, which allows them to teleport short distances around the battlefield. Finally, this structure lets you research better shields for the immortal.

Assuming you follow the build path for the templar, the templar archive opens up research options for psi storm, a devastating area-of-effect ability for high templar, and the Khaydarin amulet upgrade, boosting the high templar's energy reserves. Once dark and high templar are in the field, you can combine two of them to create twilight archons who can drain enemy energy reserves with a special ability.

Instead of building up the templar, you could construct a stargate to open up aerial units or a robotics facility for some more exotic units. The robotics facility lets you build phase prisms, which transport units and can set up phase fields wherever they land, observers, which are cloaked spy units and require the construction of a separate facility called a null circuit, and the hulking colossus units. Colossi absolutely dwarf any other units on the field, and attack ground units with two sizable laser beams. They require a robotic support bay to be constructed before they can be warped in, a building where colossus shields can be upgraded.

Finally there are the flying units. Initially you can build a phoenix, capable of hitting ground and air and unleashing an overload attack that launches multiple projectiles at once. Warp rays get pumped out of here too, which attack both air and ground with a continuous laser that does more damage the longer it stays active. Once you put up a fleet beacon, you can bust out carriers and motherships, some of the Protoss' biggest weapons.

Keep in mind Blizzard said much of these tech advancements and unit abilities will likely change before the final product comes out. One of the most enjoyable parts of the playing Protoss is with the shift-click build queuing and general base management. Since Protoss probes don't have to stick around while a building is being constructed, you can issue a few quick orders and return your focus to an assault force, or give the probe a few more build orders while the structures are warping in.

So, in short, the game's a lot of fun. We eagerly await the full unveiling of the Zerg forces which will hopefully happen sometime later on this year.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

After playing StarCraft II for a little while longer, we can say the experience definitely retains the feel of the original. Of course there are plenty of changes with how the units work and the rock-paper-scissors gameplay, but it's still fast paced, still features eye-catching unit animations, and runs quite smoothly. The economy is largely unchanged, as you're still commanding SCVs or probes to mine minerals and vespene gas. Putting together a base isn't as much of a hassle since you can queue up build orders using the shift key, something especially useful for creating additional unit cap space with pylons or supply depots for either race.

A recent interview we had with Chris Sigaty revealed that even the content we see at BlizzCon today and tomorrow is entirely subject to change. For instance, since E3 2007, the Protoss soul hunter unit has been completely axed from the game. The Zerg, not present at the show, will apparently be revealed at some time later this year, but Chris gave no indication of precisely when. In terms of some mysterious beta keys handed out at the show, we're told it could apply either to StarCraft II, which is still in its pre-alpha phase of development, or something regarding the newly announced Wrath of the Lich King expansion for World of Warcraft. Blizzard was still unwilling to divulge details regarding the significant changes they've mentioned coming to battle.net.

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Motherships, a Protoss super unit, have been altered in significant ways. They're still powerful, but they no longer have the black hole attack which, if you've seen the footage from this past May's Worldwide Invitational, could clear the screen of enemies. They also don't seem to have the ability to create a missile blocking field around them. Instead, they use a cloak field, something we didn't find all so useful once we'd already moved them directly over a Terran base and were getting nailed with anti-air missiles. They're no longer capable of attacking air units, though they can dish out a laser barrage against those who reside on the ground. It's also now possible to have multiple motherships out on the field of battle.

One thing we particularly enjoyed was the Protoss phase cannon's ability to go mobile and redeploy. In the original, these structures were strictly for static defense, which they still are to a degree. Only now they can rapidly transition into a mobile form and traverse the base, able to set down again anywhere in phase field range. These fields are generated by pylons, structures that govern the Protoss unit cap, and phase prisms that can be moved around the battlefield. While mobile, the phase cannons can no longer fire and are still susceptible to damage, something we found out the hard way. Even so, we managed to fend off a few Terran attack waves by properly redeploying these things.

Protoss gateways, the production facilities that bring Zealots to the field, can be switched into warp gate mode. Doing this allows units to be called down much faster, though you sacrifice the build queue and there's a significant cooldown between each individual unit construction.

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Back on the Terran side, we played one round specifically to assemble as many Thor units are possible. These are high level ground units, and are actually constructed on the field of battle by an SCV, instead of built at a facility. They're about as big as a building too, brandishing two gigantic arm cannons. While their shots are powerful, these things are extremely slow to turn and fire, so they didn't seem that effective at attacking by themselves. They're big targets too, and with only a few siege tanks to back them up, the aggressive AI quickly took them out, even though we had a few SCVs assigned to repair each of them. Thor also have a special gun attack that, once triggered, unleashes an artillery barrage for several seconds from four cannons mounted on the unit's back. One unit we kept getting railed by while using Terran is the Protoss immortal, a heavily armored land machine with some extremely powerful cannons. It attacks fairly rapidly, but they're particularly difficult to take out, at least with the Terran army we were putting together, consisting mostly of heavy attack units.

Anyway, these are still initial impressions. We have to run off to a live SCII demo right now, and will come back with plenty more details, and continued hands-on impressions tonight and tomorrow.

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When BlizzCon 2007's show floor opened earlier today, thousands from the rabid mob darted directly for the StarCraft II playable demo section. Hundreds of PCs are set up running single-map skirmishes against the AI, as well as multiplayer matches. To entertain the sizable crowd waiting in line, a large display is projecting multiplayer footage and previously released videos.

Blizzard is about to have their opening ceremony in a short while, but we still managed to get some hands-on time with SCII. We chose a machine running a 20 minute single-player skirmish, and picked Terran to play, with Protoss being the other option. Note this was just a random battle unrelated to the campaign. Below is what kinds of units the Terran currently have, as well as how their tech flow generally works.

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From the start you can build any number of basic structures with the SCVs, including a refinery, missile turret, sensor tower, bunker to store marines, barracks, engineering bay, and a supply depot. Your command center, the central hub of your base can be upgraded along two paths. You can choose to turn it into a planetary fortress, which increases armor and drops a huge defense turret on top, or turn it into a surveillance station, which extends the structure's range of sight and makes a scanner sweep ability available.

Once a barracks is up, marines and medics can be cranked out. To get the ghosts on the field, you need a merc haven building, which comes with a holographic dancing Night Elf on top. Then you need a shadow ops building, where you can add on a tech lab to research cloaking fields, nuke and drop pod call downs, usable by ghosts. Nukes, as you might expect, have a devastating effect on the enemy. Drop pods can help buffer an attack by bringing down troop carriers that spill marines onto the battlefield. Otherwise, ghosts can attack conventionally or set up sniper shots that can wipe out enemy infantry in one hit. If you choose not to go the ghost upgrade route, you can stick with a merc haven and pump out reavers at a surprisingly quick rate. There's no queue for these guys, instead a set number that can be created at one time. The number has a cooldown of about thirty seconds before it ticks up by one. Reavers have an extremely low resource cost, and their build time is only one or two seconds long. With a few merc havens, you could get a sizable force on the field within a very short time. And if you didn't see any previous previews, reavers are infantry units that can hop up and down between platforms of different heights.

A tech lab can be added on to the barracks for additional benefits. Here you get, for a fee of course, stim packs to increase movement and attack speed while slightly hurting marines. U-238 shells increases the range of marines from 4 to 5, combat shields increase marine hit points by 15, the caduceus reactor increases the maximum energy of medics by 50, and flare lets medics use this to reveal the targeted area for 10 seconds.

At a factory you can construct siege tanks, cobras, which are fast tank hunters and anti-air units, as well as vikings, bipedal armored support armed with chainguns. With the right upgrade, these guys can turn into planes. Siege tanks can also be upgraded with siege mode from a tech lab attachment. Tech lab and reactor add-ons to barracks and factories are interchangeable, meaning if you instruct one facility to lift off the ground, another can drop in, take it's place next to the add-on, and access all the appropriate upgrades. We really enjoyed using the cobras, which are capable of blasting out dual railguns that seemed extremely effective against Protoss armored units.

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The most interesting thing was the thor, a gigantic tank-like Terran assault unit. These guys aren't actually built in a factory, though you need a structure called a munitions depot to allow their construction. It's the SCVs that build the thor, though, right out on the field of battle.

For air units, there's the spaceport, where you can build predators, dropships, banshees, nomads and battlecruisers. Predators are fast fighters that attack other air units, but can also be switched into intercept mode to block incoming fire. Banshees boast air-to-ground fire, and require a tech lab attachment on the starport, which allows you to research a cloaking field ability. The most interesting were the nomads, who are primarily support craft. They look like a floating construction crane that's been bent into a square, and can repair units, blast out EMP, and set up a defensive matrix that reduces all incoming damage by 50 percent. Then you've got the battlecruisers, who now have a new special ability. They were the most powerful Terran unit from the last StarCraft, and retain their devastating yamato cannon blast, which affects single target. A new attack ability, called a plasma turret, can blanket an area with a hail or glowing projectiles, making the battlecruisers even more formidable.

The smaller air units are useful for scouting, but the Terran have an even more effective radar towers. The signal emitted from these can actually reveal units still hidden behidn the fog of war, making them show up as red hexagons, giving you a little more time to position forces before the attack.
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 3:15 pm
IGN Australia wrote:GC 2007: Starcraft II Hands On

More hands-on time with Blizzard's long-awaited sequel.

It's no surprise that the Blizzard Conference at the German Games Convention was strictly a standing room only affair. Fans (those who hadn't already seen the same presentation at BlizzCon) packed the area in front of the screen and even spilled out into the walkway just outside of the Blizzard booth. Luckily, we managed to get a seat fairly close to the front so we could bask in the glory of the Starcraft sequel and the latest World of Warcraft expansion, Rise of the Lich King.

Those of you who've seen our coverage from the recent BlizzCon won't be terribly surprised by anything that was shown or said. In fact, the whole presentation seemed to duplicate what we'd already seen and already heard. Still, more of the same is never a bad thing where Starcraft II is concerned, and we certainly weren't going to pass up a chance to play the game.

Spoiler: show
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The main point emphasized throughout the Starcraft II part of the conference was the innovative way that the single-player campaign is presented. Starcraft II takes the concepts advanced in the original (and the recent Warcraft games) to an even higher level of sophistication and engagement by including interactive dialogue sequences and context-specific cutscenes.
We already reported from BlizzCon about how this works in practice, from Jim Raynor's initial discussions aboard the bridge of the Hyperion battle cruiser, through to the end of the demo where an old friend returns to prophesy doom and destruction. Since that's covered, let's move on to the real main event: the hands on time.

After the conference was over, we had the chance to play through a lengthy 2v2 multiplayer match. Our initially positive impressions of the game haven't changed much since the last time we got our hands on it, but we are starting to sense more and more that the real challenge in playing Starcraft II online is less about managing your units than deciding what units and upgrades you need to spend your money on in the first place.

While the sides are each going to be choosing from just a dozen or so core combat units, the range of upgrades for them gives players a great degree of freedom in terms of designing their armies. This makes building a quick and steady flow of resources is key to getting the right balance between the number and quality of units.

In our matches, we got lots of mileage out of the Vikings and Siege Tanks but that's mostly because we made an effort to boost their effectiveness by researching general vehicle upgrades and some specific powers that each unit can obtain. Our tank-busting Cobras benefited from some of the vehicle upgrades but we were focused more on the other two unit types to spend much time or money on the speedy vehicle killers.

When you consider that you can make use of just as many upgrades for your infantry and air units, and that you'll be fighting enemies online who are making the same customization decisions with regard to their army, the possibilities for finding cool strategies increases to a remarkable level.

There are even more options available once you throw team play into the mix. Our partner seemed to focus much of his resources on pumping out lots of marines. With the two of us together, we should have been able to rule the map but the damn Protoss defensive structures proved too strong (well, too numerous at least) for us to make much headway in our base assaults.

Since it was clear that the players in our match were interested in getting their hands on as many different types of units and upgrades as possible, none of us was really focused enough for a full on assault with a well-designed, highly specialized army. Instead, we wasted ourselves by throwing small groups of units at each other just to see what would happen. Sometimes we won these small skirmishes and merely waited for the enemy to send out a fresh mix of new unit types. Others times, we totally lost everything because the enemy countered us with the one threat we couldn't handle.

Unfortunately, the demands of our schedule here in Leipzig meant we couldn't spend all of our time playing Starcraft II, so we had to cut it short and move on to other things. Be sure to check our media page for complete video coverage of the keynote, including lots of footage of the Hyperion bridge sequences and a bit of gameplay as well.
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PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2010 1:27 am
Blizzard wrote:STARCRAFT® II: WINGS OF LIBERTY™
IN STORES STARTING JULY 27, 2010


IRVINE, Calif. – May 3, 2010 – Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. announced today that its highly anticipated real-time strategy game, StarCraft® II: Wings of Liberty™, will arrive in stores throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, Mexico, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, and the regions of Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau starting on July 27, 2010. Players will also be able to purchase StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty directly from Blizzard Entertainment shortly after the retail launch.

"We've been looking forward to revisiting the StarCraft universe for many years, and we're excited that the time for that is almost here," said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. "Thanks to our beta testers, we're making great progress on the final stages of development, and we'll be ready to welcome players all over the world to StarCraft II and the new Battle.net® in just a few months."

StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty is the sequel to Blizzard Entertainment’s 1998 hit StarCraft, which has been hailed by players and critics worldwide as one of the top real-time strategy games of all time. Sporting a vibrant 3D-graphics engine, StarCraft II will once again center on the clash between the protoss, terrans, and zerg, with each side deploying legions of veteran, upgraded, and new unit types. Unparalleled online play for StarCraft II will be available through a new version of Battle.net, Blizzard Entertainment's world-renowned gaming service. Battle.net has been redesigned from the ground up to be the premier online gaming destination for Blizzard gamers, with several enhancements and new features, such as voice communication, cloud file storage, leagues and ladders, achievements, stat-tracking, and more.

The solo campaign for StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty will continue the epic saga where it left off in StarCraft: Brood War®. The story line chronicles the exploits of marshal-turned-rebel-leader Jim Raynor and features both familiar faces and new heroes. Players will be able to tailor the experience, choosing their own mission path and selecting technology and research upgrades to suit their playing style throughout the 29-mission campaign. Several challenge-mode mini-games will also be included, with focused goals designed to ease players into the basics of multiplayer strategies.

For more information on StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, visit the official website at http://www.starcraft2.com. Further details about the game, including the alternative pricing options previously mentioned for certain regions, will be announced in the coming weeks. With multiple games in development, Blizzard Entertainment has numerous positions currently available -- visit http://www.blizzard.com/jobs for more information and to learn how to apply.
About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.

Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft® and the Warcraft®, StarCraft®, and Diablo® series, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (http://www.blizzard.com), a division of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry's most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment's track record includes eleven #1-selling games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company's online-gaming service, Battle.net®, is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active players.


Source: http://us.blizzard.com/en-us/company/press/pressreleases.html?100503

I'm not much of a gamer . . . . but I can't wait for this game!!! :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
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PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2010 3:49 am
Thanx for the heads up krush233, I've been waiting for mention of a release date for this for ages but haven't been able to find anything out.

If I could give you a 'goldie' I would :mrgreen:
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 28, 2010 6:39 pm
Just thought I'd give you all a heads up so you don't make the same mistake I did when trying to install this game...

Turn off any peer blocking programs you may be running or it won't let you access Battle.net - once installed you can turn them back on and everything runs fine but you need to be able to access Battle.net to download an authentication module that lets you play the game (single or multiplayer). Once installed you never have to worry about it again!

If only it didn't take me 27 hours to figure this out :x
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