Review by Blitzguy
"Another masterpiece from blizzard."
Any PC gamer should know the Warcraft series, which represents some of the best real time strategy games around. Warcraft 3 had a lot to live up to and in short it does in every way possible.
Gameplay - 10/10
If it aint broken, don't fix it. That's completely true. Warcraft 3 still basically uses the same base as the other famous Blizzard RTSs (Warcraft and Starcraft). It's still mostly about gathering resources, training units, timing, and out-smarting your opponent.
However, there are lots of new things in Warcraft 3 that makes it a distinct experience from the other games. The obvious one is that there is four races, vs. 3 in the previous Starcraft. The four races are extremely balanced, and with patches balancing them even more. There really is no argument at which one's the best...they're all equal. They're also extremely cool.
One new feature, probably the biggest, is the introduction of hero units. These units are really powerful units that gain experience by killing enemies. Each race has 3 different heroes, and each has their own special spells you can learn with experience and each has inventory slots, giving this game a lot of RPG feel. In single player, heroes are the story and they carry over from mission to mission...though in multi-player heroes start fresh at level 0 every game. Personally, I think heroes are great, and depending on which hero you choose your strategy will change giving this game a lot of depth.
Another thing about Warcraft 3 is the size of the battles. They're pretty tiny, usually fought with maybe a couple dozen units per side. That is because of the ''upkeep'' system and the unit limit. Upkeep means that when you have more units, the less resources you'll be able to bring in. The unit limit is set at 90 (and some units even take up more then one space). That number seems really low if you just finished playing AOK for example and rushed your opponent with 120 units. Warcraft is not like that. The whole point of this system is to stop people from building mass amounts of one unit and then swarming the enemy. It works really well too. You generally want to have as fewer units as possible. Some people hate this, some love it. Me, I think it's great, because it requires more strategy to deal with this rather the just build build build.
The single player of this game shocked me. I never realized that a RTS could be this entertaining in single player. The reason why War3's single player is so fun is because of the story. It's just amazing, and after every mission you'll always want to know what happens next. The missions themselves are also very fun, and each mission brings something new. The mission goals also very quite a bit, so you'll never be bored.
The multi player for me is the heart of the game. Battle Net is not better then ever. Instead of having to browse through games, there is a great new filter system where you choose the type of game you want, and click PLAY NOW. Boom, you're in a game that you wanted to play with others that wanted to play the same game. Amazing.
Lastly, the replay value of this game is through the roof. This game ships with a great level editor to make your own levels, which then you can play countless hours with online at battle net.
Graphics - 10/10
This game is 3-D, with a zoom-able and rotate-able camera, and is blizzard's first 3d game. Simply, it looks amazing. There are lots of great lighting effects in the magic spells and they'll take your breath away. The unit models are all pretty good, though some are a bit ''blocky''. The camera is pretty flexible, though you'll use the highest view mostly because you'll want the largest view area. The game is quite colourful, and pleases the eye. Superb graphics!
Sound - 9/10
Terrific sound, especially the voice work. When playing through the single player game, you'll hear great out-standing voice acting giving many of the main characters character. Other times, the many unit sayings all sound great, many are quite funny. They're so good that you'll know the units by their voices.
Sound effects are top notch. Footsteps, swords, and corpse launching machines, all sound like they would.
The music however isn’t very outstanding. They're mediocre. But you'll be too busy playing the game to notice the music.
Final - 10/10
This is a masterpiece. You'd be a fool to pass up this game.
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 07/04/02, Updated 07/04/02
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