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StarCraft (Windows)

89
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100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
4.1
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  dave b (3)
Written on  :  Jun 01, 2007
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars3.57 Stars

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Summary

Unique

The Good

This game remains the only good game I have come across where the races are different. In many, many games they have directly opposing units (sometimes with a small alteration to how they work) while other games go a bit further and have genuinely unique units. However in Starcraft every unit bar the resource-gatherers are unique. There are a few similar units, but always with very different roles. Even more surprising is the base setup. While, there are some similarities between the Protoss & the Terrans (both possessing buildings that build individual....) the zerg are totally different. They build technology buildings, then one building builds everything. This results in a totally different playing style, allowing Zerg to change unit type with far greater speed than the other races. The Protoss can build bases very fast - they don't have to have a unit build their structures, just placing them then leaving for the next one. The Terrans have the most flexible base setup - allowed to build almost anywhere on the map, not just near control srtuctures like the other two. They can also move existing major structures around at will, although the structures are slow & inoperable while in transit.

The result is a game with three sides, not a game with one plus a handful of idiosyncrasies. With great balance between the races the game is very replayable, and the map editor has created almost limitless numbers of special objective maps for those bored with the standard game.

The Bad

The single worst pint has to be the unit AI, as already mentioned. Arranging units can be a nightmare. Path-finding is poor, but comparable with other games of the time. The computer controlled players are infuriating however. Sometimes they appear to know everything about you, other times they can't build there own base even without any opposition. While in general they are fairly easy to beat they gain immeasurably powerful units - as they can control every units special at once they can do things no human could ever hope to achieve, individually targeting every one of your units with an appropriate ability. While the AI does respond to your actions in building units that are capable of fighting what you are currently using they are still very poor defenders, so if you can ever stage an assault on them you are likely to be able to cause a lot of damage while having a relatively weak attack force, as by attacking in multiple areas in sequence their units will simply run from one place to another, never actually engaging any attacking force in numbers.

The Bottom Line

A great game - but mostly only for playing the campaign or for playing other humans. While online you will often find humans back-stab you, those that do tend to be very poor players & signal their intent well in advance.

For those who wish to play computer opponents - look elsewhere.