Blizzard Entertainment unveiled Starcraft 2 at the Blizzard Worldwide Invitationals in Seoul, South Korea on May 19. It is not an MMORPG a la World of Warcraft like many fans feared. The Real-Time Strategy sequel has been in development since 2003 according to developers, shortly after the release of Warcraft III: Frozen Throne—whose release date was July 1, 2003.
Blizzard deployed a 21-minutes gameplay video narrated by a developer, giving fans a walkthrough of what they have been working on, and a glimpse to the abilities of each Protoss unit, the strategies you can use to counter Terran and Zerg units, and opposite faction units that may counter the Protoss units.
The developer narrating the gameplay video said this is simply a demo, and there is no guarantee everything will stay as it is. Now that the game has been unveiled, Starcraft 2 will go into unit balance stage. Knowing Blizzard, this means Closed Beta is not too far away. Players will help test and give feedback to balance each race units and abilities: Terran, Protoss, and Zerg.
The video gameplay is massive. It is available in two sizes: 1280×720 (449MB) and 720×404 (268MB). This transcript has been created for those who do not have a fast internet connection or do not have time to download the video. Below is a transcript of the Blizzard Developer’s narration shown in the Gameplay Video. You can download the video at the official Starcraft 2 Website.
Ladies and gentlemen, we’re now going to show you a demo of Starcraft II. Before we begin today, I’d like to remind everyobody, this is a demo. This is still work-in-progress, we’ve got a lot of balance work ahead of us. Nothing you’re going to see here today is final.
We’re going to begin today with these Protoss Zealots. This is a classic unit from the original Starcraft. You can see they’re still armed with their powerful psi-blades and they’re still protected by a very tough personal body shield.
In Starcraft II, the Zealots also have a special Charge ability. This allows the Zealot to close quickly with his enemies. The Zealot’s Charge makes him extremely dangerous against ranged defenders like these Marines.
Terrans are bringing in their Siege Tanks. This is a classic unit from the orginal Starcraft, and they’re in a classic Terran position using that high ground against us. They’re shelling our Zealots from range, forcing our Zealots to go the long way around, and you can see our infantry are just taking a pounding as they try to approach this Terran position. They just can’t withstand all of that heavy Terran firepower.
In order to attack a Terran position like this, that’s so well-defended, we’re going to bring in another new Protoss weapon of war. After the destruction of Aiur and the events of Brood War, the Protoss have been forced to adapt. They created these. These are the Immortals, and they have a special type of Protoss shield. It’s a hardened shield that activates only when the Immortal is struck by a very powerful attack.
You can see the hardened shields are activating now and they’re absorbing most of this Terran fire. This makes the Immortal the perfect choice to assault this kind of defended Terran position.
The Terrans are sending in their Reapers. This infantry unit is armed with two pistols and uses a jumppack to avoid different types of terrain. Their small pistols don’t activate the hardened shields of the Immortals. This makes the Reaper the perfect choice for countering these powerful Protoss troops.
This kind of fast, bloody raid is something the Reapers really excel at. You can see how powerful they can be, hunting down slow-moving units on the field of battle. In addition, the Reapers can use their jumppacks to be very effective base-raiders. Once enemy forces are inside a Protoss base, one of the first things that they often go for is our pylons. And with our pylon down, our Photon Cannons go offline, making us vulnerable to continued attack. Fortunately, we have some new weapons.
The Protoss can use the Phase Prism to create a power field anywhere they wish. And you can seed with our Photon Cannons back online, the Reapers have no choice but to run for cover.
In addition to a number of new units, the Protoss also have access to some new mechanics. Protoss can use Warp In to teleport units anywhere they want into pylon power. You can see here we’ve created some Stalkers. This is a new type of specialist Protoss Dark Dragoon. It’s not very tough, but it does have a powerful weapon. In addition, it has a special Blink ability that allows it to teleport a short distance anywhere it can see.
This allows the Stalker to avoid certain types of obstacles. And it also makes the Stalker very potent at chasing down fleeing enemy forces.
A Nydus Worm pushes its way through the surface, opening its mouth to unleash many Zerglings upon the Stalkers, surrounding them. The Zerg have arrived sooner than we expected. You can see they’re using their Nydus Worms here to create a breachhead, sending Zerglings against us. You’ll also notice that we’re using our Stalkers here to Blink away from these Zerglings. This is an example of how a skilled player can use the Stalkers’ Blink ability to great advantage. Unfortunately, there’s simply too many Zerglings for our Stalkers to survive.
In order to deal with a Zerg infestation of this magnitude, we’re going to need to bring in some additional reinforcements. Now we’ve shown you how you can use the Phase Prisms to create a power field anywhere you wish as well as Warp In. These two mechanics can be used together to create a large army anywhere on the battlefield.
As you can see, Starcraft is still a game where large armies battle against large armies. Now our upgraded Zealots can hold the line here for a short time, but in order to really survive against this many Zerglings, we’re going to need to bring in some additional firepower.
These are the Colossus. They’re powerful robotic units that can use their long legs to step up and down cliffs. In addition, they have a powerful beam that sweeps backwards and forwards, able to do large amounts of damage to small, swarming units like these Zerglings. This makes the Colossus the ideal support unit for this group of Zealots. —Read More