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    Warcraft III: Reign Of Chaos
    Author: Drew Lanclos   Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment   Developer: Blizzard Entertainment
    Date Posted: August 1st, 2002
    SLRating: SLRating: 9.5/10
    Bottom Line: It's a marriage from heaven: Something old, something new, something borrowed, and something...um...green.

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    Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
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    Gameplay (cont.)

    Well, we've covered most of the new features of the game, but how does it all factor in? If it seems to you that Warcraft III is little more than Diablo II plus Starcraft set in the Warcraft world, then you're not altogether far from the mark. Don't let that stop you, though. There's a lot to see and do in the single player missions, and Blizzard has taken some good steps to try and keep the game from being a pack of 40 battles. In one mission, for instance, Arthas has to execute the occupants of a village attacked by the Undead, and he has to slay as many as possible before the Undead opponent claims the victims in his own army. In another mission, the Death Knight has to travel through several villages locating Undead acolyte converts among the villagers. If you don't kill the innocents quickly, they'll sound the alarm, and the village defenses will come to try and take you down. Very unique indeed. I wished there were a lot more missions like these throughout the game.

    The units are very well differentiated, and balanced as well. Each of the races has their own theme and set of racial traits that make them unique. It doesn't just stop at the units, though. It also goes for the buildings too. The Orcs and Humans, for instance, can issue a call-to-arms which brings in the worker class units for fighting. The Human peasants get trained into militia, and temporarily stop working to defend their towns. The Orc peons run into the Barrows, from which they attack passers-by. It's a great way to help defend against early raiders and rushers, though it's only really available to the Orc and Human races.

    Other racial differences exist as well. The peaceful nature of the Humans allows their peasants to work together to construct buildings (which was also allowed in the previous Warcraft games). Since the Orcs are far too chaotic to work together in this fashion, this is unavailable for them. The races also take pages out of the Starcraft playbook in some ways - The Undead summon buildings similarly to the Protoss (and the Acolytes are free after starting the summon), while the Night Elf Wisps morph into most structures, similarly to the Zerg. The Night Elves Ancients (The tree-buildings) can also uproot and relocate, just as most Terran structures could.

    With Starcraft, Blizzard only had three races to balance and counter-balance, but they out-did themselves with Warcraft III. There exist many tactics to defend against each possible attack scenario that your opponents could muster up. And you no longer have to worry about something impossibly daunting like a twenty-Battlecruiser assault anymore; All players have a 90 food cap, which ensures that no one player can control an overwhelmingly massive army. Additionally, unit upkeep has been added in, which encourages players to keep lower numbers in the ranks. When you have more than 40 food units in use, you enter "Low Upkeep", and your lumber and/or gold intake rate goes down. Keep in mind that the extraction rate remains constant. The thinking is that, in High Upkeep (for instance), you only get 4 gold for every 10 mined because the other 6 were used to pay the middlemen and cover expenses. This is another good balance adjustment that many hardcore players will be happy to see.

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    Article Navigation

    1. Introduction/Background
    2. Gameplay
    3. Gameplay (cont.)
    4. Gameplay (cont.)
    5. Graphics & Sound
    6. Multiplayer
    7. Conclusion/Rating Breakdown

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