Review: Starcraft 2: Legacy of the Void
Starcraft 2: Legacy of the Void is a standalone expansion for the hit title Starcraft 2: Wings of Liberty, which was released in 2010. This means that the game runs on the same engine, but is a standalone title. Neither of the previous iterations of the game are required in order to play. The expansion features a new single-player campaign and three new game modes.
The new campaign has challenging gameplay and features a story that is compelling, though somewhat clichéd. The game stars Artanis, the hierarch leader of the psionic race known as the Protoss, as he attempts to unite his people in order to stop the end of the universe.
Between missions, players are given access to the Spear of Adun, a powerful ancient starship which allows users to customize forces, and it provides a wide array of powerful abilities to utilize in combat. This includes everything from orbital bombardments to temporarily stopping time for everything but friendly units. Players can also pick from one of three variants for each of the 10 unit types, which makes a total of 30 unique units to choose from.
The new feature that stands out the most is the new co-operative mode, where two players team up in order to complete a variety of missions and level up different commanders with unique sets of units and abilities. Each commander is unique and allows access to special campaign units that would be too hard to balance in competitive play. There are also plans to release new missions and new commanders later down the line.
In addition, there is the new Archon mode, where two players control the same army in competitive multiplayer, and the new daily tournament feature, where players can compete in randomized tournaments. Each of the game’s three factions has also received new multiplayer units to keep the online play fresh.
In terms of graphics, the game has minimal improvements over its first iteration. There is a noticeable improvement on brand new units and environmental props, but the game is beginning to show its age after five years of circulation. As with most Blizzard games, the music is superb and creates a perfect atmosphere for the game’s sci-fi setting. Blizzard also shows that its cinematic cut scenes are still some of best in the industry with its amazing animation skills.
Watch the StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void Launch Trailer below.
This game marks the first official ending to one of Blizzard’s three legendary game franchises. Fans of the series need not fret though because Blizzard has simultaneously announced its plans to release additional content for the game in the years to come. The first will be Nova’s Covert Ops, an 11 mission campaign that will be released in the spring of 2016.
It is also worth noting that the base Starcraft 2 game can actually be played for free by downloading the starter edition. This includes the game’s custom map arcade mode, select campaign missions, and all three factions in multiplayer.
Starcraft is available online or in stores for $40.
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