Review by imaguy
"You will love this game no matter you're a single player or a multi player."
Please bare with me, this is my very first review.
Whenever I give a 5/10 score it means it belongs in the love or hate category. Either you're gonna love it to death or hate it to hell.
WarCraft III, the third installment in the WarCraft universe developed by Blizzard. While I'm not a hardcore fan of the strategy game series. I do enjoy the occasional ''build and kill'' genre. But don't get me wrong WCIII is a very fun game. I enjoyed it tremendously. Well, lets begin...
Lets start from the option menu. You have some very eye catching animation behind the backgrounds. Every time you switch to another race, the background is of that race. Which is very nice. The menu itself is also very interesting, its also animated to drop down and pull up the screen whenever you click something.The in game menus are your usual Age of Empire, WC, Tropico lay out. You have your mini map, you have your build options. Nothing special. But still good.
This is where the world of WarCraft III starts to shine. When you first start the game you have an extremely well done Cinematic Graphic(CG) sequence intro. The CG well surpasses even those of Diablo II in some ways. You see THOUSANDS of Orcs and Humans simultaneously running across the battle field.With a few dramatic camera placements and some motion blur effect. This sequence is breath taking. (Thanks to 3D Studio Max.) Lucky you this isn't the only one you'll see through the single player campaign. In fact the CG alone is well worth the effort and time to play the single player campaign (which I will get into later.) One sequence I have to mention is the one where the prophet turns from a crow into a human. That shot is freaking cool!!!.
Then you have the in game models. Unlike WC, SC, Diablo this time the game is in 3D, from the grass, rocks to the houses and units. Full 3D eye candy. Almost all of the in game sequences are told with the in game graphics. But do not fear, for its pretty stylish. Although there is a very comic feel to it (think Spawn). I have to mention the water effects, it is AMAZING. See it for yourself. The animation are very well done, at times its like watching a 3D comic come alive. You have spectacular shadow effects. You see high and low lands very easily, they really affect the gameplay if used wisely. Every race in the game has a very unique appearance. It really makes you feel special. The bottom line is the game is a graphic power house. And for a graphic whore like me, this game is VERY sexy.
For those of you who have played a Blizzard game. You know the sounds and voice actings are very well done. So I'm not gonna spend much time on this. Music, well...I didn't notice any memorable tunes. Maybe its me, but the music is not as good as WCII nor WCI. But they do fit appropriately into the game, and does add to the feel of battle. Voice acting is always superb with Blizzard. All the voices you heard in previous games are all here. Very stylish. No complaints there.
GamePlay/Single Player Campaign---(9/10)
Okay, this is where WCIII really starts. How does it play?? Simply put, it plays like other WC and SC games. If you're familiar with that type of game play theres not really much to say. You gather resources, build, and fight. Of course, STRATEGY comes into play. Strategy this time is very important, more so than SC. This time around you hav 4 races; The Human Alliance, Orcish Horde, Night Elf Sentinels, and the Undead Scourge.
Every race has something up their sleeves. Every races has their advantages and disadvntages, this time its very obvious too. The battle is very ''rock, paper,and scissor''. Every unit has something to fear. Every unit has something to overwhelm. Like I said strategy is very important here...you can no longer just send a horde of super powerful units to wipe the other base out. There are ways to prevent them. For example, the food limit is 90. Every unit takes up 1 to 3 food units. Other words theres a very restrictive amounts of units that you can build. Unlike in SC, you have a limit of 200. Thats twice as much as WCIII. This makes the game twice as challenging. Since you really have to think about which unit to build next. Like I said, strategy really comes into play in WCIII. NO more ''I have more resources and can produce faster'' gameplay. Even if you do have enough resources, the food limit really restrains you from building so many. Not to mention the ''rock, paper, scissor'' effect. Some people might welcome this change, but others might really get turned off by it. I, for one, does like it.
More intresting about the single player campaign is the Hero system. Simlply put you have a main character, who can gain levels and equip some nifty itmes. They have their own spells and voices. You have a building in which they can be reborn (with a price) if they are ever killed in battle. You can only have one of each hero. At times it feels like a RPG more than strategy game. Which I really like. But then its still a strategy game, the heros are not all powerful beings who can slain anyone. What good is a hero against 10 flying dragons whom he can't hit?? Like I said, the ''rock, scissor, paper'' effect. There's always something against a certain unit(s).
The single player campaign is very story driven. Which I believe is to satisfy the single player crowd (me). You have four races, each races has a different perspective to whats happening. Kudos to Blizzard for thinking about the single players out there. The whole single player campaign is VERY lengthy. For guys who hasn't played much of these strategy games, it will take a while to beat. I'd say about a week. Every campaign has their unique CG openings. Like I said, the CG movies alone are worth the effort and time. Not to mention the gameplay is quite addictive.
There are easter-eggs (aka extras) to spot during a certain missions. Its addictive, fun, and great to look at.
You have two options for multiplayer; A)Play against computer oponents without going online. B)Go online and play against human oponents, and get wacked. Either way they are the same to me. I'm not a big fan of the multiplayer online game. Call me traditional or old school, or whatever. The gameplay is pretty much explained in the above Single Player Campaign. The multiplayer stuff is pretty self explanatory. But even if you mastered the single player campaigns, the multi player universe is WHOLE different game, just keep in mind you're playing against humans minds instead...its far more unpredictable than you thought. Just practice, practice, practice, and as far as I know remembering all the hotkeys and shortcuts are extremely useful in multiplayer. Speed is very important, seconds add up to minutes. That is why I put this on the ''Love or Hate'' score range. Its really your own preference.
The Replay Value. I judge all my games in the replay category. Do you really want to spent $60 on a game that you're going play for once and never again?? Where using that $60 you might have gotten something more replayble??
Yes, WCIII is fun. Yes, WCIII is refreshing. Yes, WCIII is beautiful to look at. But, this is where almost all multiplayer games fall short. This is meant tobe a multiplayer game. This is meant tobe something to play against someone else through the internet. Yes, its EXTREMELY replayable for the multiplayer part. Yes, you might want to play the single player campaign again and again just for the fun and the eye candy or the easter-eggs. The option to choose which ever mission you want to replay is great also. But the bottom line is that, WCIII is still meant tobe a multiplayer game. So techincally the single player battles are elaborate trainign seccions for your mulitplayer enjoyment. Fortuantelty Blizzard did not neglect the single player department. In fact they did a tremendous job with it.
BUY or RENT????
If you're into the multilayer scene...then DEFINATELY buy it. Its very fun game. It will take A LOT of time to master. You have four different races to choose from. This is as fun as multplayer strategy games get.
If you're not into the multiplayer stuff. I recommend you try it out somewhere first. Since strategy games are not for everyone. BUT, if you have the money. By all means, GET IT. NOW. Like I mentioned, Blizzard did not neglect the single player department. The story itself is filled with twists and turns. Its gonna take you for a very enjoyable ride if not a spin. So yes, do buy it even for the single player. Not to mention its very lengthy. If you do have the money I suggest you get the limited edition.
Final Score 8/10
Blizzard has crafted anoter great game, but as fun as this game is, its meant tobe a multiplayer game. Which you go on line and play against other people. I, for one, am not really into that scene. Theres nothing wrong with it. Its just, I'm more of a traditional single player kinda guy.
But I assure you. You will love this game no matter if you're a single player or a multi player. You will enjoy it.
final score not an average
Reviewer's Rating: 3.5 - Good
Originally Posted: 07/18/02, Updated 10/23/02
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