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All Hail the Return of StarCraft

I have decided to go off the reservation and post a StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty article.  Not because I am a huge nerd and have probably given up on women entirely, not because I have waited 10 years for this day, but because I am pretty sure it will piss off the editors at Bradmouth who are trying to run a nerd-free site and stupidly provided me with the login information for a post.  And like Lane Kiffin .. if I want to get ahead in life, I don’t need to just burn a bridge or two, I need to burn ALL the bridges.

 All Hail the Return of StarCraft

"No Brian, I can not be your date to the High School dance again!"

To give a quick background on the original StarCraft, the game was released in 1998 and to date has sold close to 10 million copies (most ever by a PC game).  Almost, half of which were sold in South Korea or “Nerdtopia” as I like to call it.  StarCraft is so entrenched in South Korean culture (kind of like David Hasselhoff and Germany), that they have a competitive championship each year that includes play-by-play announcers, large crowds, and professionally organized teams.

You can actually watch this on YouTube if you want (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-4DN8RKNDc).  (If you skip to about 8 minutes in, then it gets really good.  Sadly I found this more exciting than anything that has been on ESPN in the last month.)

And while this obsession by the swirly and wedgie-suffering citizens of South Korea makes July 27th the perfect day for North Korea to actually grow a pair and invade South Korea, (probably not a coincidence that the US moved a carrier group over there this week and they are running training maneuvers) I doubt they very much care.  This game has caused fatalities due to overplay! If only that happened to a few Twilight fans.

Now, the original story was never that great.  Something about an Alliance and the Confederacy and aliens and relics, and all that. .. it is all fairly convoluted.  Of course the characters for the Confederacy have molasses dripping southern accents that never gave me a warm fuzzy feeling (they should be careful, for some people the Civil War hasn’t ended yet).

Despite this, StarCraft survived and flourished because of its extraordinary multi-player (kind of like GoldenEye did for the N64) and the balance between the Zerg, Protoss, and Terran (aka .. the Marines) forces.

In fact, the greatest school break I ever had was playing 6 straight days of StarCraft with 5 unwashed college friends of mine amidst an apartment that reeked of dirty clothes, stale beer, and vomit.  (And for some reason had to be kept at a morgue-like 65 degrees because utilities “were included in the rent”).

 All Hail the Return of StarCraft

"Once again sir, your leadership strategies have gotten us all killed."

Wait, … you spent 6 years in college, you had access to over 20 major vacation breaks and that was the best one?  Actually, yes.  Unlike the boring Spring Break destinations like Panama City (been to twice), Daytona Beach (10 times) and South Beach (about 50 times), StarCraft (in moderation) can be exciting, free, and doesn’t involve vomiting in a hotel room, questionable hookups, and the possibility of an STD test (really .. actually no sex of any kind).

You have to realize how great this game was.  Think of the joy of hearing someone scream in panic from the next room when a massed Zerg army crashes their base or the profanity laced tirades when a cloaked special forces ghost continues to nuke their units.

It is a game filled with jerk-moves, mouse slamming, and maniacal laughter.  And unlike traditional war games like Risk or Battleship or even Monopoly (Hedge family don’t fool around in Monopoly), StarCraft has the one thing these games could never create, the ability to be as evil as you ever wanted.

It’s chess if I slapped all the pieces from the board, Sorry if waited till you left and stuffed all your pieces into a microwave.  It’s carnage and slaughter and the loss of hope.  It is addictive and fantastic and was one of the first games out there where this was offered (and if you say Heroes of Might and Magic, I will come to your house and punch you.  Actually, .. something tells me you have already been punched a lot in life).  And while great games have followed, this was the first.

Now, I don’t have a computer with the processing speed to support StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty (it overheats during Bejeweled), therefore I cannot review it, but it passes the test of any video game.

Did they take their time? Yup, 10 years.

Does this studio know what they’re doing? Blizzard is responsible for World of WarCraft, Diablo, and a growing virgin population of young males, So … Yes.

Did this game cost a lot? .. Yup, $100 million dollars. Unlike movies starring Vin Diesel, that means its good.

 All Hail the Return of StarCraft

"My commander assured me that my death was for the greater good."

Is there a large fan base that will be pissed if this game isn’t good? Yes, and you don’t want to piss off South Korea. You really shouldn’t piss off any nationality that has compulsory military service (keep in mind this also applies to Switzerland and Israel).

Now, from what I have seen of this game, it looks amazing and while you may judge me for how nerdy this article was, I owed this to my friends, to nerds everywhere, and to the thousands upon thousands of marines I left for dead on pock-marked riddled planets throughout the StarCraft universe.  You my friends (well unless they got married), have not died in vain.

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