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The word "sequel" usually means "take the same elements that made the first
thing successfull and create a story that could possibly match the end of the
previous episode". It is especially true with movies and as this industry
rubs off on computer and video games, it is not surprising to see the same
syndrome invading the computer gaming world.
Fortunately, Blizzard Entertainment did not follow this trend and will not
just produce a rehash of the first Warcraft with new scenarios to earn quick
money. Instead, they are developing a whole new product based on the same
duality between Orcs and Humans but with so many improvements over the
original game that the only common point between the two titles is the word
Warcraft II features a multitude of new units like Dwarven inventors,
dragons, Elven archers, battleships, griffons, zeppelins, etc...for combats
on land, air and sea. Each unit was remarkably rendered in SVGA graphics
as you can check for yourself on this page and if you look down at the other
screen shots of the game, you will be dazzled by the backgrounds's details
and the graphics's sharpness.
As mentioned above, Warcraft II uses SVGA graphics throughout the game
including three-dimensional rendered cinematic scenes in the introduction and
other intermediary scenes. The results are simply amazing! Just take a look
at some of the landscapes to judge by yourself!! They look very realistic
and the units apparently integrate themselves into the background with no
difficulty at all.
This sequel will feature separate storylines for both Orcs and Humans as in the
first game, but this time with 28 scenarios. However, there is a big difference
between the two episodes. In Warcraft II, the player has the
opportunity to customize the game with a map, scenario and unit editors to
provide the players with unparalleled possibilities.
But one of the main improvements remains the multi-player capabilities through
modem connections, direct links or networks with up to seven players playing
at the same time. One very interesting feature of Warcraft II in the
multi-player domain is their unique "spawning" technology that allows two
players to compete head-to-head with only one copy of the program. It will be
very useful for people with two computers at home who want to play with their
friends or other members of the family without buying an extra-copy of the
Finally, for advanced players who are not afraid by real challenges, Blizzard
will include an additional dozen veteran scenarios. The game will be
available only on PC CD-ROM for Christmas 1995 but I have no doubt that other
platforms will have their own version later in 96. A shareware version on CD-ROM
will be available later in September with 6 scenarios and the possibility to
command as an Orc or an Human leader. Like Pax Imperia 2, the shareware version
does not include all the features, but it will bring you some of the
excitement you can expect from the final release.
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