Hello, I’m Chad and I’ve never played StarCraft before in my life. I used to play other, older RTS games back in the day, like Deadlock. I’m also a big fan of turn-based strategy titles like the Civilization franchise. But, when it comes to StarCraft, I haven’t had the gumption to take it on. There could be many reasons behind that, but the primary of which is probably the fact that I knew the sequel was coming out and would rather just wait for that to drop than pick up a 10-year-old game and try to start from scratch.
With some forceful nudging from a couple other editors here, I went out and claimed my copy of StarCraft II yesterday, slightly unsure how my laptop would handle it. I installed it and didn’t even realize it was running some sort of monologue in the background while it was doing so until it was nearly finished. Everything looks and runs great on my machine, albeit not at the highest settings. I’m still amazed how Blizzard can make some of the best games in the world and support a very high array of computer specs, more so than most new titles these days. I mean, c’mon, if I tried to play Crysis on my laptop it would spontaneously combust, setting my apartment on fire. Then I’d have to go through the trouble of turning in an insurance claim and all that jazz. Not worth it. Thank you, Blizzard, for not destroying my apartment.
While I sat down to play a couple single-player missions first, a bit later in the evening Al hit me up to show me the ropes of some multiplayer, but only versus the AI for the time being. The first thing I thought was – what the frak is going on? Things are easy at first, but quickly become more complicated the more structures and attachments to those structures you build. What do I build now? How to I protect myself? Why is that weird-looking alien ship shooting at…er, never mind, there goes my command center.
The first of my “WTF” moments came as I was concentrating on placing some barracks, bunkers and supply depots, as well as gathering resources. The enemy rushed a ramp that I had blocked with some structures…and I quickly realized I had forgot to build any soldiers to defend myself. Go ahead, tell me I fail at life. DO IT.
I then lamented the fact that I can’t multi-task and Al told me exactly what everyone reading this article would – that I would fail at life (and StarCraft) if I didn’t learn quick. So, now instead of concentrating on individual tasks, I concentrate on multi-tasking, and everything else haphazardly falls into place. Well, for the most part.
The other issue that hit me in the face harder than a right hook from my wife when I stay up too late playing games is the fact that there is so much to learn. You have to learn what buildings you need to build what units, the best order to build those in, which attachments you need to support various other units, buildings or vehicles, how to manage your resources well, and a myriad of other things.
We played a couple multiplayer matches together and, slowly but surely, I think I’m starting to get the hang of it. I’m a big fan of these sci-fi setting, especially in more strategy-oriented titles like the aforementioned Deadlock, Sins of a Solar Empire or whatever. I’m actually surprised I never got into StarCraft sooner, but it just happened. The guy at GameStop even looked at me funny when I told him I had never played the original before. I look forward to going more in-depth with this title, especially the single-player.
I have to be honest, I’m not a huge multiplayer gamer. Never have been and likely never will be (aside from MMOs). The story is what draws me into most games, so let me play more than a couple campaign missions and I’ll get back to you on that.