So. Starcraft 2. Can´t write much now, but it´s good. Took me about mhmm....20 to 23 hours till finish. LIked it very much. Not sure wether the price is right.Will post more in an update within the next few hours.
Well, damn, so it took me a bit more time since calling my review in. Oh well, nothing I can do now. So, Starcraft 2. My first reaction was to feint interest and play a few levels. So I did, and then stopped for a few days. Seemed nice, but nothing groundbreaking. After that I took myself 2 days and went trough the rest of the campaign. While the campaign plot and missions did good enough to suck me in and keep me interested in the outcome of the, the very first impression did never really change.
Yes, it is good. But so was the first game too. Starcraft 2 in essence is a game, which whom no one should be able to understand, why they needed to wait almost a decade to release it. Even with the graphics engine they could have done this one years ago, like 2004 at the earliest I´d say. In fact, the graphics are the most bizzare thing, as the game itself uses an engine comparable to the WoW graphics engine in details and otherwise could be completely in 2d, if not for the particle effects you´d almost never notice. You can´t really zoom out, only a bit inwards like in Warcraft3, the units are almost completely copied over with a fews new ones in the mix and some old ones redrawn and retextured for further effects.
Alas, the singleplayer game was also enrichened by the ambience, as you can choose missions by your own volition, although the very visible and linear campaign strings are still there, at least you get to decide in which order you do them. The campaign is itself is very varied and bundled with decisions within that change the missions you play, though not by much. Between missions you are allowed to update units and buy special research updates with points you gain in the missions as you fulfill bonus objectives, otherwise you might miss out on these. Neither is really necessary to do the game, but as an added feature they come along nicely, as they allow some tricks with the game and your playstyle. Sometimes you have to decide which research you´ll choose and as such will miss out on another one that gets locked afterwards. Still, this is not enough to make the campaign very replayable.
Also there are achievements, as seems to have become the usual thing nowadays, but except a simple score and some nice lines for the missions they really do add nothing as you never gain anything from them in game terms. It´s a nice to have but not really necessary. In fact, the whole systems is only for the hardcore gamer interesting, as only these guys might replay the campaign more than once, on another difficulty for more achievements. Oh, and for the difficulty, I was mighty suprised, as I breezed very often trough the missions, sometimes finishing in under 10 minutes, though that was mostly in the early missions, no wait, in one almost in the last third of the campaign there was a mission, where I did that too, and I laughed about it. Sometimes it seems the game simply doesn´t want to bee too hard upon you.
In conclusion, I have to wonder, what took them so long for this game to make. It´s good, but then again, what did you expect, it´s exactly the same game as before, with a 3d-engine and some new units in the mix. And only one racial campaign at the moment, the rest to be released within the next years. At full price, most likely.