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  1. #1


    Yeah... I was at work... and I was bored... and I was thinking about playing WarCraft 3... so I wrote this... Enjoy...

    WarCraft III: Reign of Chaos, Collector's Edition Review
    By Spylord
    [email protected]


    To start, I must admit that I really was not looking forward to this game. I would check out various news updates from time to time, and even laughed when the local GameStop put up a time-till-release counter. It just didn't appeal to me Why was I semi-disinterested in this, a Blizzard game? Well, I was pissed that it wasn't StarCraft II. I was also afraid that my dated AMD-K62-based system could not handle the 3D game.

    I didn't pick up interest until I had 8 people on my buddy list yapping almost non-stop about how great a game it was. Somewhat skeptical, I decided it was worth trading in Eternal Darkness and Resident Evil, Game Cube titles, for WarCraft 3.

    I: The Box

    Normally I wouldn't bother reviewing the box for a computer game, however, the WarCraft 3 Collectors Ed. (W3:CE) box is very nice. The top of the box is rather a slip cover, sturdy, with texture. The front has a nice render of an Orc and the W3 Logo. Inside everything was packed in with a steadfast plastic insert. On the back was a removable sheet with a photo showing all the wonderful goodies you get for the extra $20 CE.

    II: The Contents

    The W3:CE contained ?The Art of WarCraft? illustration book, a black envelope containing a close-up render/photo for a character from each of the four races, a 'WarCraft III Cinematic DVD,' soundtrack CD, a 'Collector's Edition Manual', a product catalogue, tech-tree insert, and the game itself.

    The Art book was in nice order and contained CGI-renderings from the second and third WarCraft games, concept art from all three games and art for the used for the boxes, manuals, etc. etc. as well as cinematic concepts and captures. All had nice descriptions.

    The photos were nice and sturdy, but not much here to talk about.

    The cinematic DVD had very slow load times, but had all six cinematics, the three teaser trailers, and trailers for all of Blizzard?s other games as well as a sneak peak at the game play of the upcoming World of WarCraft game. The DVD also contained concept art and trivia 'games.' The menus were reminiscent of the WarCraft III game menus with animated backgrounds.

    The soundtrack CD had 16(?) tracks. It was all very classical in genre, and may not be for everyone's tastes. It contained in-game music and a suite from the cinematics.

    The Collector's Edition Manual was a nice thick book of about 175 pages, and while nice for reference materials, unit abilities and descriptions, and gameplay control mechanics, was lacking in statistical unit data of which there was none, including unit production costs and illustrated tech trees. It was chalk full of unit art, simplistic world maps, a 'Creeps (neutral units in game that may or may not attack you)'and had a section on the World Editor. The manual did a nice job of describing each race and it's histories, and even gave a brief description of The Burning Legion.

    The product catalogues and tech-tree insert were nicely done, as far as those things go.

    Now, for the game...

    III: WarCraft III: Reign of Chaos, The Game

    WarCraft III, by Blizzard Entertainment, is the first attempt to create a strategy game with RPG elements. The gist of the game is to gather resources, build a formidable army, and defeat the enemy by killing all his units and buildings while gaining experience points and leveling your 'Hero' units, or super-units that can decide the outcome of the game.

    Control is similar to that of StarCraft, in that you select units and can order them to cast spells, attack enemies, gather resources, or complete some other task. While it appears to be identical to StarCraft, the A.I., or artificial intelligence, of your units has increased greatly so that the player can concentrate more on strategy than units getting stuck on some part of the map. Some units have spells that are 'auto-castable' meaning that the unit will cast the spell as need be, and doesn?t need to be ordered to cast it.

    The camera, in-game play, is stationary, and can only move overhead, with the angle fixed. This is nice in that the camera doesn't get stuck and doesn't wander about in odd angles in the middle of battle.

    Graphics, while 3D, consist of simple models, decent textures, and some nice lighting and particle effects. In-game cut scenes have also been implemented, where models and textures are of nicer quality than those of playable models, and the camera can move about somewhat freely.

    Sound is typical of what Blizzard has released in the past: Excellent voice acting with unique sounds and phrases for each unit, including the smart-ass remarks if you click a unit too many times. The music is well done and captures the tone of the game well. Battles sound somewhat believable and realistic.

    The cinematics are also typical of what Blizzard tends to do, and my only gripe is that there weren?t more of them.

    WarCraft III's storyline fits the game structure well, but it really just seems to be StarCraft in the WarCraft universe. There's a new, unknown enemy and a romance is ripped apart by corruption and arrogance while the fate of the world hangs in the balance.

    Improved unit A.I., while most definitely a blessing, is also a curse. Playing against computer opponents is difficult, to say the least, and I find myself trying to mimic some of their strategies they have used against myself.

    Race diversity is somewhat decent, But wasn?t quite as noticeable as it was in StarCraft. Orcs and Humans are almost the same except that Humans have more air support while Orcs have more ground/melee-specific units. Undead forces require buildings be constructed on 'the Blight', or a specific Undead area that expands when more buildings are built, and can also use unit corpses as ammunition or to replenish life. The Night Elves definitely have the most ranged units and benefit from the ability for select, stationary units to turn invisible at night.

    With the exception of some slowdown when there are many units in play, my low-end, minimum requirement PC is more than able to handle this game, and in days of almost endless playing I have yet to suffer a lock-up or other crash.

    IV: Online Play Via Battle.Net

    Support for WarCraft III on kicks ass to say the least. I experience very little lag with my 28.8 connection speed. Searching for games requires you to select game type, race, and maps you are willing to play on. Or if you want you can play arranged games where you and a partner, or partners, can team up before the game is created, and, when the game starts, are already allied and have allied chat activated. And, if you don't feel like playing there is an integrated 'Observer Mode' allowing players to be audience to games.

    I'm trying to be as unbiased as possible, but damn, the player profiles are awesome. It allows you to input a web page, a short description about yourself, and race-by-race win-loss statistics, as well as solo and team statistics. Your avatar, yes you get an avatar, is determined by your experience you receive by playing games and what race you play as most.

    The last big improvement is the friend list, is also very nice. It will tell you where a friend is at a glance, allow you to drag up their profile, and whisper, or send a message only they can see, to them. The advantages of this system, especially for clan gamers like myself, are simply staggering.

    It was also awesome to log onto Bnet and actually get the screen name, Spylord that I wanted. This is in part thanks to the gateway system implemented in Diablo II, which also helps reduce latency issues.


    In closing, WarCraft III is a great game that has not only expanded upon a genre but has almost seemingly merged two genres, that of an RPG and Real-Time Strategy Game, together. 3D graphics and Real-Time Strategy games don't traditionally mix well, but again Blizzard has pulled it off in W3 with excellent results. Single-player is challenging, and multi-player couldn't be any more fun to play. The extras in the W3:CE more than make up for the $20 difference between it and the standard edition of the game.

    <font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Spy on 2002-07-14 01:11 ]</font>

    <font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Spy on 2002-07-14 01:12 ]</font>

  2. #2
    Ill be whatever I wanna do
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Friends! Help! A guinea pig tricked me!


    Skypenguin has returned from SC!

    Watch the skies for...SKYPENGUIN! Prepare to get your necromancing, undead bitching, mutha fucking crew knocked the fuck out.

  3. #3
    Saiyan Grand Master
    Join Date
    Apr 2002


    I must get Warcraft 3 now...but after I thoroughly ravage Diablo II inside out. I have a question, I've heard that you have to have a certain graphics card requirement? Has anyone heard of this and how great does the card has to be in order to play Warcraft 3??

  4. #4


    Aw man, WCIII is by far the best of the BLizzard RTS games so far. The new food limitations and upkeep make it much more strategic and with heros add a great roleplaying experience. I have played this game for the past week or so and it still rocks. We should all play against each other.

  5. #5
    Saiyan Grand Master
    Join Date
    Apr 2002


    Man, sounds really cool!! If only you can keep your Hero and play more difficult modes later and trade weapons and armors like PSO and Diablo but I read about the way the game is played and how you switch from one campaign to the other so this would be impossible...nevertheless it sounds really awesome!! Thanks guys

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