SC2: Legacy Of The Void Trailer Pledges Its Life For Aiur

With StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void [official site] due to launch on November 10th, Blizzard are putting the finishing touches to their trilogy-capping RTS expansion and the Protoss themselves, well, they’re on the eve of war they’re wondering if it’s all worth it. A new animatic trailer has five minutes of debate about destiny and and honour high prices, leading into the expansion’s grand invasion.

(Spoiler: they think it’s totally worth going to war, which is perhaps a relief otherwise Blizzard would have to scrap the game and this video would be the end to SC2.)

I was never into the Protoss – not as characters, anyway; I do adore them as a fight team – and this still doesn’t humanise them for me. The Terrans had their big silly space western thing going on, with a fun cast of characters and the civil war with the Confederacy. The Zerg, well, the Zerg were shrieking fleshbeasts, which I’ll always find charming. But I was never interested in Protoss personalities, your typical Stick In The Space Mud species wanking on about honour and duty and saving ancient places with silly names; Zeratul is the only one I can even remember by name, the sulky weirdo.

Still, seems a whole lot of folks will be testing their oft-repeated motto “My life for Aiur.” It’s launching on the same day as Fallout 4 – a face-off of ye olde PC gaming, like Blur vs. Oasis all over again but with more explosions – so I wonder how many pledge their lives for Bloody Mess instead.

54 Comments

  1. Tiger Teeth says:

    TRAILER HAS ARRIVED

    • Tiger Teeth says:

      Man, I love the Protoss and their doofy hand-blade psychic dudes. And the spider-tanks. And the carriers. Actually, mostly the carriers.

      No, wait, that weird artillery unit they had. The ones that looked like a slug. A slug in armour. And you have to manually build them ammunition because ????

      I want those guys back, they were great. Work with me here Blizzard.

      • Assirra says:

        You are talking about the legendary Reaver here. A unit that with the current system would simply not work. Units clump up way too much compared to Brood War so a couple reavers would utterly destroy an army.

      • Jeroen D Stout says:

        You should try playing Starbow, it is a mod to create a mixture between Broodwar and Starcraft 2. It has Reavers as well as other BW-era units… and it is also a more interesting game that what SC2 has turned into, in my opinion.

    • Gap Gen says:

      Your thoughts…?

  2. Troika says:

    “The Legacy of the Void is surely nothingness, right?” And costs money.

  3. Kollega says:

    I don’t know about anyone else, but in my opinion the kind of RTS storytelling that involves Premier Tim Curry and Emperor George Takei would, for all its flaws, still be better than this.

    • lowprices says:

      I was so sad that Red Alert 3 was the last branch of that particular gaming family tree. Even for someone who is as awful at RTS games as I am RA3 was a joyfully camp delight.

  4. Greg Wild says:

    I’m currently playing through Wings of Liberty again. It’s somewhat a shame they’re ending on the po-faced Protoss. As I see it they need to inject a lot of non-Protoss characters to keep things interesting.

    Still, I’m looking forward to it. WoL was fantastic, and HotS was solid enough. They’re still the best traditional RTS in the scene imo.

    • Apocalypse says:

      HoT was to me a big disappointment, but I had high expectations, hots was actually more enjoyable to me, but felt super gimmicky, like they tried to squeeze in wow encounter mechanics into nearly every level and have your heros jump out of the fire all the time.

      I hope the protoss campaign will bring back the best of brood war. The multiplayer balance suggest a lot of things going back into that directions. Lets hope for the best. I am anyway a toss player. ;-)

    • vargata says:

      im exactly the opposite, for me HotS was the ultimate starcraft, i’ve felt the units more diverse and interesting but the WoL was solid enough too. i really really wait for LotV (bought it already, ive never been disappointed by starcraft games) and i expect a solid story behind it.

  5. Laurentius says:

    While I mechanically, as an sp RTS campagin I enjoyed both WoL and especially HotS, as a story goes they were awfuly bad. I know that people would say that SC and SC:Brood War was equally bad and it’s just rose-tinted glasss of nostalgia etc. I know it’s not the case, Blizzard really is not doing even decent work here. This stuff is not looking promising either, I think I would rather they remake original game with new mechanics but keep story intact.

    • Asurmen says:

      Dialogue presented here is far better than anything you’ll find in game to me.

      • Apocalypse says:

        Indeed, the dialog is fine, at the same time it looks like they had a super small budget and tried to copy gw2 artistic style to save money.

        • Asurmen says:

          Maybe they simply wanted a change of style?

        • Dreforian says:

          This isn’t new for Blizzard actually. They just did several of these animatics for the Warlords of Draenor WoW expac (leading up to the release.
          They were better story telling than anything in the actual content released sadly.

    • Ur-Quan says:

      HAve to agree with you. Writing in Wings of Liberty was super cheesy and the plot was extremely generic.
      HOTS was… well the story was ok but it’s the Zerg so obviously they lack any strong characters.

      At this point I just want to finally get it over with.

    • Jeroen D Stout says:

      I am playing through Starcraft 1 at the moment (first time) and it certainly is not ‘equally bad’. It feels more like it saw science fiction at the time and tried to make a game like it. I think I prefer almost everything about, except for that cursed unit selection cap.

      Actually it’s a bit like Moffat’s Doctor Who, where people also claim that the series has ‘always been like this’ but the older series were more rich still, in a certain way.

      (Ur-Quan above me says the Zerg obviously lacks strong characters but Starcraft 1 manages to make talking sacks of puss interesting characters, so…)

    • Frank says:

      I agree 100%.

    • thetruegentleman says:

      The original Starcraft was a huge mixed bag: on the one hand, the Terran were awfully nonchalant about aliens showing up and destroying entire worlds, the Zerg campaign petered out after the Kerrigan reveal, and the Protoss campaign completely failed to make the player feel like he’s fighting a losing war, which was the central premise.

      On the other hand, the characters were probably the best written of any RTS game ever, which really prevented the game from falling into tedium. Each race was also well characterized, which helped to make the player feel involved with them.

      Starcraft 2, by contrast, scaled back the character interactions during each level without increasing each level’s plot significance to compensate, effectively making each level feel the entire campaign feel empty and irrelevant, even if each level was fun to play individually.

    • ludde says:

      Blizzard’s been going down hill with the writing.

      Bought Wings of Liberty on launch, didn’t bother with the second expansion and won’t with this one either.

  6. Rao Dao Zao says:

    MY WIFE FOR HIRE

  7. vargata says:

    Ive already bought both fallout and starcraft and i dont mind at all that they will come on the same day. im nearly sure fallout will have annoying bugs so when i will go mad enough on fallout, while bethesda will be working on bugfixes, i will have plenty of time to raid the world with the protos. i actually think it was a good move from blizzard

  8. Neutrino says:

    I can not abide the horrendous cheesy ‘transformers’ style of unit design that has prevailed throughout the beta, and the enforced base expansion mechanic just removes what little strategy element remained in what was already little more than a click fest of grouped MOBA units.

    Loved the original StarCraft, but won’t be getting this. I’d give my right leg for a Dune remake by Firaxis or Amplitude though.

  9. Premium User Badge

    municipalis says:

    That was rather boring. I think the script needed another couple of drafts, as that went on, back-and-forth, in ham-fisted fashion, for way too long.

  10. jayfreck says:

    I have such low expectations for the plot of this that i’m just going to watch someone else play the whole game on youtube

    • Shadow says:

      Sounds fun.

    • Dominare says:

      You think the plot will be bad so you’re going to take an action that still exposes you to the plot but skips the gameplay? What the actual fuck?

  11. Chris Cunningham says:

    I remain staggered that anyone enjoyed HOTS’s single-player. The campaign is practically linear and insultingly easy, and the plot is like a bad Star Trek: Voyager episode. To wit: a massive reset button, a cast of immediately forgettable aliens (plus Stukov, to remind you of how good things used to be), lashed together with craven fan service (a previous RPS article on the camera shots used on the alien Tricia Helfer springs to mind) and the same sort of “this one bad guy is really a good guy and will save the world” rubbish that Metzen pivoted the whole Warcraft franchise around.

    I’ll be waiting for a good few reviews (from people who didn’t lap up HOTS) before I consider stumping for this. And I’m a Protoss fanboy.

  12. NemesisZidar says:

    “But I was never interested in Protoss personalities, your typical Stick In The Space Mud species wanking on about honour and duty and saving ancient places with silly names;”

    Im sorry but thats pretty much…wouldnt say ignorant but comes close to it.
    Its quite unfair to rate a species designed the described way (fighting for honor and such stuff) as a “typical” race, when we talk about a game that pretty much made this type of race big in the first place.
    Thats like watching a sequel of the Alien Movie and then saying “oh its again a typical alien with acid as blood and a thick chitin armor ripping people with its sharp arms, again”. Or watching Lord of the Rings and moaning about the typical green orcs and elves being dicks about everything because they typically think they are worth more than other races and dwarves because they like living under the earth and forging weapons all night long.

    Yeah thats typical, it was used very often in media. But thats because these games and movies made them interesting in the first place.
    Starcraft is old, and they have these races and their themes running now for such a long time, that others just used these types of races and themes over and over again. I even remember that for example Tolkien pretty much invented the classical Orc. Shall i now moan about its typical use in the movies now?
    So i dont see this as a valid approach to one of the oldes RTS Series we have and say “oh no its a typical snob race again”. So either you just started PC Gaming this year or you didnt know that Starcraft 2<– had a prequel. Otherwise i cant imagine how someone would then call out a typical stereotype of a race.

    There simply are certain universes that started to make some races and themes big. Warhammer for example, but also Stories like the Lord of the Ring. Starcraft and Warcraft belong to those who made them big and "typical" in the first place.

    About the expansion, many are saying the story of the first two parts wasnt good. I think its the opposite. Yeah sure, the plot isnt the most interesting or lets say unique ever, but i like how they present it. I like the characters presenting it and i like how they use different approaches and details to underline it. I love their cinematics because they look glroious and epic. I love their use of music and i like that they ever find a neat way of presenting the story in the levels.
    Im not saying its the best story ever, but i think its ok but therefor presented very good.
    At least i enjoyed the singleplayer more than i would ever enjoy the multiplayer. SC1 had great multiplayer which i liked to play. But SC2 doesnt accomplish that in any way, sadly. It ever feels forcing me to click as often as possible. Even when looking at ProGamers on a stream i think its boring.
    And mostly im more confused. I believe they actually do 30% useless commands that werent nessecary just to look pro and have the most actions per minute possible, while they could have done the same trick with less clicks.
    Like they ever select a group of units about 5 times, clicking on the ground to order movement 20 times when only 5 clicks would have been enough.
    It ever seems this game became purely a ProGamer game and people like me who only want to spend an hour max are too slow to play it, too fast paced. Too much stuff to do. SC1 never felt the same way.

    • Vickers says:

      Did you really just compare the protoss as an original race to tolkien’s orcs? I’ve loved Starcraft since I was like 10 years old but come on, are you even aware of Warhammer 40k? The protoss are almost a carbon copy of the Eldar. Both are a haughty, dying race who depend on warpgate technology. Although starcraft has become its own thing, the protoss are hardly very unique, and warhammer 40k already had a pretty big following in the 90’s with a host of successful games.

      • JamesTheNumberless says:

        Agree with Vickers, The Protoss are Blizzard’s Space-Elfs and nothing more. They’re more or less a direct rip off of the Eldar who are in turn a rip-off of aspects of Tolkien’s Elves and Dwarves. The terrans are much less of a a rip-off of Space Marines, except in their appearance. The 40k Imperium is based heavily on Frank Herbert.

      • JamesTheNumberless says:

        Not forgetting of course that there’s a pretty hefty element of both the Vulcans and the Klingons to the Protoss/Eldar. Perhaps though it’s the Vulcans who are the true space-elfs.

        • Zekiel says:

          Yes. I love Protoss, but they are in no way original. I can’t think of anything about them that isn’t described by “Eldar + Klingons” (and Eldar are of course just Tolkeinian elves in space).

    • Asurmen says:

      Nothing ignorant about it. They are Stick in Mud aliens who go on about duty and honour, and she doesn’t find it that interesting.

  13. JamesTheNumberless says:

    Still do not get people’s criticism of the plot in Starcraft. It’s self-aware, over-the-top, slightly camp, cheesy cartoon space opera. Why should people not enjoy that? It’s almost as much fun as He-Man.

    • Asurmen says:

      This.

    • Distec says:

      Because even if it always was silly sci-fi, the recent games can’t even seem to pull it off with any quality. You can have a ridiculous space romp done well, but so much of SC2 reads and plays like bad fan fiction. I’d need more time to really expound on what I think makes it inferior, some of which is tough for me to put my finger on. I’d also grant that the first game did a better job by just generally showing you less; no major story development outside the mission briefings, and the cinematics were often vignettes that established tone rather directly moving the plot along.

      I think the biggest sore spot for me is Kerrigan. Did she really need a redemption arc? And in such a dumb way?

      • Zekiel says:

        Kerrigan didn’t need a redemption arc (her pinnacle was “queen bitch of the universe” at the end of Brood War). And she didn’t even properly GET a redemption arc (even though Blizzard clearly intended it to be such) since HotS basically prsented her as a monster who we are (for some reason) supposed to root for. Man, I hate HotS.

  14. EhexT says:

    This is unbelievably badly written, even for Blizzard standards. It is so stilted as to be almost physically painful, and the number of times keeps trying to iterate that Protoss totally have always had a Hive mind (they sure as fuck didn’t in SC1 or the previous SC2 games) while CONSTANTLY having protoss characters ask each other what they’re thinking and feeling (in the case of this trailer, they’re doing it 10 seconds after clumsily informing the viewer that they totally have a hive mind that shares exactly the thing they’re asking each other about).

    Is each line of this written in a Void (is that why it’s called that?) and by a different writer who has no idea what came before or what’ll come after?

    • Asurmen says:

      Hive mind is pushing what they have. They’ve always had a shared psychic connection though. It allows them to share their thoughts and emotions but doesn’t mean it’s constantly happening. They still have to activity do it.

      Personally it’s better written than the stuff in the game or trailers.

      • jrodman says:

        Did the game already ship and you already played it? I’m just kind of out of date here.

    • Zekiel says:

      Ah I loved it. It was cheesy and overblown and just what Protoss have always been like.

      As for the hive-mind thing I’m sure there’s some stuff in SC1 (at least in the manual) about being “as one” and the Dark Templar having severed themselves from that (didn’t they ritualistically cut out some psychic organ or something to physically sever a psychic connection? Or am I just imagining that?) How exactly this “being as one” works is never explained but having some psychic linkage seems perfectly reasonable to me.

  15. Hunchback says:

    Will i lose my manly-men club badge if i shiver and hold back a tear while watching this video?

  16. PikaBot says:

    SC2’s writing has always just needed a few more passes with a red pen; scenes that were almost good, but where the dialogue felt just slightly off.

    This was pretty good, though, apart from the bits where characters tell each other things they already know for the audience’s benefit.

    Really my big concern, plot-wise, for LotV is: please God, let Whispers of Oblivion be the last time the words ‘prophecy’ are uttered in this series. It pretty well laid that subplot to rest and good fucking riddance.