Blizzard’s StarCraft: Remastered To Fiercely Maintain Classic Experience With 4K Graphics, Arrives 8/14
Blizzard is remaking one of the most popular games ever to grace the PC, and one that is largely responsible for Battle.net online service. We are of course talking about StarCraft, the best selling game of 1998. It is especially popular in South Korea, though it has a rabid fan base in all corners of the globe. Those fans are being treated to a remastered version that will introduce upgraded graphics and audio while keeping the core gameplay experience the same.
StarCraft: Remastered is a "return to glory," according to Blizzard, which is offering exclusive content to fans who pre-order the title.
"Prepare to rediscover a classic. StarCraft: Remastered upgrades Blizzard Entertainment’s original sci-fi real-time strategy game and its acclaimed expansion, StarCraft: Brood War, from beginning to end. Experience the intergalactic battle between the terran, protoss, and zerg with improved graphics and audio…and the same classic gameplay that made StarCraft a global phenomenon," Blizzard says.
The neat thing about this remaster is that Blizzard is not really chasing a new audience. Instead, this is a gift of sorts to fans who have kept the StarCraft franchise relevant for nearly two decades. In speaking with Kwanghee Woo at PCGamer, senior producer Pete Stilwell said that the team working on the remaster would be content even if no new players joined the fray. We are sure they would not be disappointed if new players did pick up the game, but the larger point here is that the remaster is primarily aimed at fans of the original, and the franchise as a whole.
Woo had a chance to play Brood War and came away impressed with how faithful the experience stayed with the original, quirks and all. Blizzard went in and reproduced every last bit of the game, replacing the original's 640x480 graphics with 4K colors and animation, while leaving the game play experience alone for the most part. Even the low unit selection limit and notoriously bad pathfinding AI on some units are ported over to the remaster. The same goes with bugs and exploits that gamers have taken advantage of throughout the years.
"We’ve remastered our units, buildings, and environments, improved game audio, and broadened our supported resolutions. Illustrated interludes bring the struggles and victories of heroes like Artanis, Fenix, Tassadar, Raynor and Kerrigan to life like never before. Most importantly, the strategy gameplay that StarCraft perfected years ago remains unchanged," Blizzard explains.
It is rare to see a developer take this approach. While some may criticize Blizzard for not fixing some of the game's original issues, we suspect the vast majority of fans will appreciate the developer's decision to remain faithful to the original.
You can pre-order StarCraft: Remastered now for $15 (hit the source link). It requires the StarCraft Anthology, along with an Internet connection, Blizzard account, and Blizzard's desktop app. Those who pre-order will see Korhal Command Center, Aiur Nexus, and Char Hive unlocked. The game comes out on August 14.