Why I’m not playing SC2


Thanks to all who commented on my SC2 post last week in which I explained why the beta had put me off. I’m definitely intrigued by the game now (which is good because it’s taking over the internet) but decided to buy the original Starcraft and play through that first.

My hapless minions lurch from one disaster to the next, having barely held their base for 30 mins until the friendly drop ship arrived  (they actually held on for 29 mins, 59s – the zerg were nomming my last building at the timeout), but it’s very fun and I’m not finding the old graphics a drawback.

You can tell a game like this is fun if you keep wanting to retry old missions because you’ve learned some new tricks. Bunkers can fit more than one unit! Who knew? We’re currently trying and failing to reach the downed Norad II.

It is just unfortunate that while out with friends this weekend, we ended up chatting to a guy in a pub with a strong Yorkshire accent and consequently I keep thinking that Raynor et al would be indescribably cooler if they were from Yorkshire and not Texas. (Sorry, Texans!)

I do still have my doubts about SC2, and the large price tag doesn’t help. And neither does a post I read today from Kotaku about how to pick your race in SC2.

you shouldn’t pick Terran because they are human, Protoss because they are cool and high tech, or zerg because of their monstrous appetite. Each race has a distinct play-style and/or play-styles unique to their race

If wanting to play a cool high tech telepathic robot is wrong, then I don’t want to be right!

10 thoughts on “Why I’m not playing SC2

  1. I keep wanting to replay now. I have also not jumped on SC2 yet, but I want to. The first game I remember how nerve-wracking that mission is, and I think it is just supposed to show you how you get zerg rushed that you just get overrun at the end of that 30 minute mission. Very intense.

    I loved zerg the most as playable race, and the story that progresses through their missions is really amazing.

    Must look for my old Starcraft CDs now.

  2. The original SC is the game that got me into PC gaming. It truly is a classic and I’m glad you’re enjoying your playthrough. RTS games just aren’t some people’s cup of tea, just like I don’t like Halo and a gamer friend of mine won’t touch an RPG with a 10-foot pole. But if you end up liking it, the SC2 campaign is great and the missions are varied and interesting, and I do find myself wanting to replay them (and the achievements help with that).

  3. I’ve always preferred single player version to online multiplayer to be honest. it has more variety it progresses the story and your strategies for defeating a level vary more (multiplayer is usually comes down to which opponent builds huge force faster and “zergs” others before they can get to them)

    Blizzard has some of the best storylines in the business and that alone is worth buying a game for. I don’t have SC2 yet. the price tag is a bit scary. but when I will buy it, I doubt I’ll be playing multiplayer much, but I sure will play through campaigns a few times 🙂

  4. IIRC to save Norad II you have to build up a substantial force of marines and leap frog them by building 3 bunkers at a time. Also fly your buildings closer to node points.

    Oh and you need your missile cannons. Build them next to bunkers and push your marines into the zerg bases. Continue to pump them out and eventually you’ll push the zerg away and you can move around to Norad II. Remember you can repair Norad so keep the scvs bunkered.

    Whatever you do, don’t force march across the map because if you do, the bigger zerg force will kill your forces and then kill Norad.

    Just wait until you get to New Gettysburg!

  5. Starcraft was the first RTS game in which the conflicting sides were completely different, but balanced.
    Before Starcraft, every RTS game had the same units/buildings for each side which were just named differently and had different art.

    Take, for example, Warcraft 2. Both sides have basic melee unit, it’s named Footman for humans and Grunt for orcs. Grunt model is green-skinned orc with a big axe, Footman model is plate-clad human with sword and shield. HP, movement speed, attack speed, armor and damage of both units are the same. In other words, the only difference between them is name and model.
    This was true for every unit, with exception of spellcasters who had different spells. However, sometimes even spells were the same but had different names and graphic (I’m speaking about Blizzard/Death and Decay).
    As consequence, the gameplay for the both sides was the same. Your peons harversted gold and lumber in the same way that your peasants did. If you’ve found a strategy which worked for humans you could just mirror it by orcs and it would work.
    This balance model left one question: why have two sides? Playing human vs orc was the same as playing human vs human. Or orc vs orc.

    Enter Starcraft. Three races which are radically different.
    For example, you have a basic worker unit which harvests crystals, gas and builds. Is SCV, Drone and Probe the same unit with different name? No. SCV builds as peasant/peon from WC2 would built (spending its time on building site), Drone becomes the building, and Probe just starts the phasing of building and is able to do something else after. This is very visible distinction, and it brings about some important consequences. One is that Zerg buildings cost not a nominal price but nominal price + cost of the Drone. Other is that Probes spend zero time on building and bring more resourses over the course of the game (which helps with the high unit cost of Protoss). Also it requires just one Probe to build a whole Protoss base at once whereas Terrans would need many SCVs to do this, and Zerg would need to sacrifice as many drones as the number of buildings required.
    The buildings themselves are very different too. Not only Terran can build whereever they want, they can fly their buildings exactly where they need them. Zerg are extremely limited as they can build only on creep (with the exception of hatchery). Protoss are also limited by their pylons.
    Terran buildings can be repaired, Zerg cannot but slowly regenerate themselves, Protoss buildings have regenerating shields but can be turned off by destroying pylons that are powering them.
    Terrans and Protoss can produce any numer of units at a time (limited by number of unit-producing buildings), Zerg have limited larvae which replenish over time and morph into units. On the other hand, Zerg do not need to spend resources on many different unit-producing buildings, they just build a few hatcheries.

    In summary, three Starcraft races not just look different, you play them very very different. In the same time, the races are balanced, and it means that for each strategy that’s available for any race, all three races have an effective counters. The trick to game is to know your opponents strategy in advance (doing recoignessance on their base and guessing their strategy by buildings erected) and build successful counter IN TIME. If you are late to counter, you lose.

  6. I made my fiancee play SC1 before she started in on SC2. SC1 and the expansion came on a USB drive with the collector’s edition, which was nice. Her colors were all messed up too when she first started it, like you have in the SS :P.

    All in all, she’s getting a bit put off by the constant need to wait in missions (I think one took her an hour and a half), so she resorted to just cheating to build stuff and wipe everything out, but she’s getting the story, which is the important part.

    She’s excited to jump into SC2 and see where it goes, so that’s good 😀

  7. I Won’t be picking up SC2. why? because every review I’ve read so far say pretty much the same:
    “It’s like SC1, but with updates graphics 10/10”

    When was it okay to just update graphics and rerelease a game??
    (I know there are minor details that have changed, but it is basically the same frikking game).

    /sad gamer

  8. I won that holdout mission in much the same way – which is to say, I lost in the last minute, but I still had buildings standing when the last second ticked, so hey! Victory!

    But yeah, I think I somehow got to the Norrad, and through rest of the Terran campaign, and then never finished. SO! One-sixth of the original SC experience done.

    As for that quote you posted – I know of no better reasons than those to pick a race to play.

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