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PS+ Free Games of August 2015: Lara Croft & The Temple of Osiris, GOW:Ascension, Limbo and more
Starting on Aug. 4, a new batch of free PlayStation games for PS4, PS3 and PS Vita, for all PS+ members make their way to the PSN Store for those with PS Plus subscriptions.... [read more]
See some of the best Rainbow Six players and developers compete in Rainbow Six Siege
Much of the Rainbow Six Siege footage shown since its announcement is mainly scripted scenarios. On a live stream, some of the best Rainbow Six players went up against some of the development team at Ubisoft Montreal to show how the game should be played. ... [read more]
Next Diablo III patch includes new artifact and tribute to fallen developer
Patch 2.3.0 for Diablo III will include a new item that gives players the option to extract powers from legendary items and then equip them. Not only is this new item so powerful, it also memorializes a Blizzard employee that passed away. ... [read more]

Latest Articles

Gears of War: Ultimate Edition Beta shows that the series still has some fight
The Gears of War: Ultimate Edition beta has ended and it has been an experience. With only multiplayer available to play, I was in game after game of Team Deathmatch and King of the Hill. With a shiny new presentation and new features, is this attempt enough to re-ignite th... [read more]
If you don’t play as Nova in Heroes of the Storm, you’re an idiot
Let me start off by saying that Nova is one of the best characters in Heroes of the Storm. ... [read more]
Steam Curator group threatens developers for free games
Original Trader Group(OTG), a Steam Curator group, requested two free keys to games in order to review for their curator page. When the developer did not respond, they resorted to intimidation. ... [read more]

Latest Reviews

Heroes of the Storm Review: The WoW of MOBAs is here
MOBAs are becoming more and more common as the competitive arena of choice. League of Legends and DotA changed the face of eSports by putting the new genre in the spotlight. Blizzard has entered the fray with their answer in the form of Heroes of the Storm.... [read more]
Dying Light Review: What happens when you do Dead Island correctly
Zombie massacre simulator is the description that comes to mind when I think of Techland's Dying Light. With so many implements of undead doom at your disposal, you can easily lose yourself in trying every weapon and item you come across. The real question, though, is does t... [read more]
Tales From the Borderlands Ep. 1 Review: This time Telltale won't make you cry...that much
There are plenty of things to kill you on the planet of Pandora: the wildlife, bandits, and even $10,000,000. Or at least, that is if you are Rhys and Vaughn from Hyperion. The two of them are just a part of the cast in the first episode of Telltale’s Tales from the Borde... [read more]

Latest Videos

8-Bit Eric: A Tribute to the History of Satoru Iwata
This video is a tribute to CEO and President of Nintendo Mr. Satoru Iwata, who sadly passed away just yesterday. This video is more a celebration of some of his biggest accomplishments and a preview of the wonderful history that this leader in gaming had.... [read more]
8-Bit Eric Review: Guacamelee Super Turbo Championship Edition
8-Bit Eric knows a bit about wrestling. That's why he's the perfect reviewer for Guacamelee Super Turbo Championship Edition for the Wii U. ... [read more]
PAX South 2015: 8-Bit Eric does a Starr Mazer interview...kind of
On display at PAX South was a game called Starr Mazer, which mashes shmup gameplay with point-and-click adventure gameplay. 8-Bit Eric tried to do an interview with the developer, and well, you'll have to see what happens. ... [read more]
Starcraft II Review
Posted on September 16, 2010 by Oscar Gonzalez




For those of you just turning 12 this year, you will never know a world without Star Craft. Which bodes well for you, because you also likely will not remember a world waiting more than a decade for its sequel as you've probably just recently discovered the wonderment of the desktop real-time strategy (RTS). That’s right kids! There is more to the world of PC gaming than MMOs and Facebook RPGs. For those of us, however, who were in junior high when we were first introduced to the Zerg and the Protoss, the only thing more drawn out and angsty than waiting for the eventual release StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty was waiting for the end of puberty.

This first installment in what has been dubbed as the StarCraft II Trilogy throws us right into the action four years after the end of Brood Wars. We step into the shoes of our hero, General Jim Raynor as he's about to resurrect his rebellion against Emperor Arcturus Mengsk. This game scores big points by having the lore and story of the game tightly interwoven with the game play itself. Gone are the days when you have to read the companion booklet in a Craft game to know what's going on. It’s been replaced with unit details in the armory, post/pre-mission interactivities, and more cut scenes than you can shake a stim-pack at. Blizzard has definitely built upon what they did with Warcarft III by pulling the player into the world and story simply by playing the game.

Another lesson that Blizzard has learned from their huge money factory (otherwise known as World of Warcraft) was the addition of achievements and difficulty levels with all the missions. Before this the only replay value I ever got from an RTS game was putting in the cheat for god mode and seeing how long it took me to destroy everything with a drone. Now you can replay each mission in a desperate struggle for a higher score. Not to mention that the main game levels are a poop-load of fun to play and no two are exactly alikethere is always some tweak to make even the most familiar mission a brand new animal. And once you’ve had your fill of the story mode, there are a bunch of challenge scenarios to keep you busy for hours as you try to devise the perfect strategy to earn a gold medal.



The multi-player mode is sure to make SCII the Halo 3 of RTS games. You are allowed 50 unranked practice games to get you into the swing of things, but be prepared for some fierce competition even on the rookie field. From there you’ll go on to ladder play and enter tournaments if you’ve got emotional fortitude. I for one played an hour long game, held off numerous attacks, built up my army again and again, and just when I was about to make my move, my opponent swarmed in for a crushing blow just as I was getting my sneak attack on. Needless to say, I needed a stiff drink after the surrender. Nevertheless, the multiplayer is where the real challenge of SCII is found.

But even with the guaranteed nerdgasm you'll have from this game, there are still a few drawbacks.

Graphics are absolutely awesome if you have the machine for it. Taking a hint from the fact that I wasn't let in on the beta, I was actually going to wait to play this game and get a better computer at the end of the summer. But, when I ended up getting it as bachelor's party present I couldn't resist. Even with my graphics turned all the way down I still had moments of lag which really got in the way of in-game cut scenes and game play. Simple tip: if your compy is more than a year and a half old, think about an upgrade. After I did so I cranked up the graphics and was quite pleased with the eye-candy I beheld. Blizzard spent a lot of time making it look good and it shows.

Something that will undoubtedly hinder long-time multiplayer fans of the original SC is the complete lack of LAN support. If you want to play against friends, you’ll have to do it through Battle.net. It will be interesting to see if there are any changes to this in the future as the lack of LAN support will more than likely take a major toll on the competitive SCII community, especially in the international arena. I’d hate to see Korea’s two cable channels devoted to StarCraft LAN tournaments go off the air.

One thing that irks me a tadand this is just me getting on my soap box so feel free to skip this bitis the trilogy bit. I hope I’m wrong here, but for any of you who played WoW long enough to know that it needed to end a long time ago (which for me was after three months), you'll get the same sense during the last cut-scene in the main game that Blizzard is going to milk this for all its worth when there will probably be only enough strong plot in the entire trilogy for one game. There were plenty of side stories which gave value to the game’s many missions, but these plots themselves and characters they introduced seemed fairly pointless, especially when those characters may never be seen again.

We can most likely expect to see such mini-plots slathered on the next two games in the trilogy, making us wait with clenched teeth for the years to pass and for this three game long chapter of StarCraft to come to its epic close.

In the meantime, at least I have achievements to earn.

- Collin Lucke

Oscar Gonzalez - Editor-in-Chief og (@) original-gamer.com | all author's articles

What's your most anticipated game for August?

Shadowrun: Hong Kong
Madden NFL 16
Disney Infinity 3.0 Edition
Everybody's Gone to the Rapture
Volume
Rare Replay
Gears of War: Ultimate Edition
Dishonored: Definitive Edition
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