The downloadable sequel to one of the most popular real-time strategy games ever made, StarCraft II is now one of the premier offerings from Blizzard’s free-to-play warchest of games and continues to deliver the same kind of epic experience as the original even though the sequel came out in 2010.
How to Download StarCraft II
You can download StarCraft II for free by clicking the Download link located at the end of this review. You should know that the game consists of three parts: StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty (2010), Heart of the Swarm (2013) and Legacy of the Void (2015).
The Game Review
Initially released as three different games, Wings of Liberty, Heart of the Swarm, and Legacy of the Void, StarCraft II is now free-to-play in its campaign modes as well as in head-to-head matches with opponents. The game is supported by the selling of war chests, voice packs, special commanders, and other microtransactions by Blizzard.
Taking the concepts introduced in the original StarCraft (itself an iteration on Blizzard’s popular real-time strategy game Warcraft), StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty amps up the graphical fidelity and the different gameplay options available to the player but, more or less, stays true to the spirit of the original game. As in the first game, the three factions involved in this galaxy-spanning conflict include the human Terrans, the alien Protoss, and the xenomorph-esque Zerg.
Also similar to the original game, each race has its own aesthetic and approach to combat with the Zerg using weaponry derived from organic sources and the Protoss using high-tech weapons. Humanity as the Terrans occupy a space in between these two antagonists with ballistics-inspired weapons like guns and artillery. Naturally, players can develop different strategies depending on the race they choose and each has its own strengths and weaknesses on the field.
Similar to the previous game, combat takes place on a procedurally-generated map that tends to fling each faction into a corner and then lets them battle it out in the middle. Typically your goal is to wipe out the opposing factions entirely although some campaign missions will have you focusing on different goals.
Units are constructed and pop out of bespoke structures that are built using in-game currency that your drone units mine. There is also Vespian gas which is necessary for the construction of some units and buildings. Though tech trees do not carry over from mission to mission, some campaign trials will advance your research somewhat or give the player powerful units at the start of the match that would typically take a long time to research and develop.
This makes each StarCraft II match a balance between research and pure unit production. Unlike in the previous game, it is harder to pull off a successful “Zerg rush” and the balance and pacing of a player’s research and unit production can often be the decisive factor in head-to-head matches.
Known for its fiercely competitive matches, especially in South Korea, StarCraft II has largely carried over that tradition established in the first game albeit with all of the robust support of Battle.net and Blizzard’s online networks.
In many ways, StarCraft II is an amped up and updated version of the original with just enough tweaks here and there to welcome a new generation of players while keeping old veterans on their toes.
- Awesome StarCraft action
- Blizzard quality through and through
- Battle.net makes online play easy
- Kind of stale
- Limited specialization options
- An old community that will destroy you online