It's been more than a decade since the original StarCraft was released, but unlike a vast majority of titles released during that period, the game has never really faded and has remained the benchmark over the years for a well-designed real-time strategy game should be .
For this reason, StarCraft II does not need to be introduced. This sequel was forever in the making, although it wasn't officially announced until 2007. One way or another, the delays don't seem to have stopped anyone from wanting to play the game, and if anything, it made us feel more desperate to get a taste of it.
In the usual Catrachadas fashion, now that the game is in stores, let's take an in-depth look at how your gaming system handles StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. We tested a wide range of graphics cards with three different resolutions and an equal number of presets for visual quality. In addition, we tested the CPU scaling to test AMD and Intel CPUs of current and previous generations.
Dedicated RTS players got their first taste of StarCraft II earlier this year when the closed beta kicked off. Those who missed the boat had to fight for access keys on eBay. Many sold for up to $ 400 each, though the beta was only supposed to last three months, which later turned into five. During that time, Blizzard has released a whopping 18 patches while granting access to the Galaxy map editor.
StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty has been available for two days now and is overwhelming the digital distribution servers. In fact, we've now heard numerous stories from people who are more comfortable driving to the nearest store to pick up a copy than waiting for the 7 gigabyte download to complete and activate. In the meantime, we have no doubt that true StarCraft fanatics pre-ordered their copy years in advance and in certain cases spent over a hundred dollars on the Collector's Edition.
StarCraft II marks the return of the three races from the original game: Protoss, Terran and Zerg. This first episode only contains the Terran campaign with two planned expansion packs "Heart of the Swarm" and "Legacy of the Void", with which players can play the Zerg and Protoss campaigns.
Most will buy StarCraft II for its multiplayer aspect, however. The new competitive ladder system for ranked matches works very well and does a pretty good job of bringing together players with similar skills. Additionally, it makes jumping into a game extremely quick and easy, whether you prefer a 1v1 or 4v4 game, the system works very well.
When you look at the performance aspect of the game, you can expect it to vary widely from 1v1 games to 3v3 and 4v4 games as the maps are bigger, there are more players and therefore a lot more units. We preferred the more challenging multiplayer scenario to be on the safe side when choosing the right hardware for StarCraft II. On the next page, we have detailed our testing method for putting this article together. Right after that, we published some sample images to compare the three visual quality presets we tested.