Since it will be a bit longer now before you StarCraft fans get your hands on the long awaited StarCraft II, you might as well spend a little time reading up on what you can expect from Blizzard’s upcoming sequel. G4tv.com’s own Brian Leahy recently spoke with the game’s lead designer Dustin Browder, and found out quite a bit about what Blizzard has in store for the highly anticipated sequel.
Especially interesting is Browder’s discussion about easing newcomers into multiplayer. As anyone who isn’t a hardcore multiplayer fan knows, jumping into online matches can be a frustrating and terrifying experience, especially when it’s a game that features a large and dedicated multiplayer community. So to help minimize this all too common barrier to entry, Browder says that his team went with a graduated scale approach to get players comfortable with multiplayer before they actually jumped into full blown online matches.
“We’re encouraging you to take some baby steps. So, you’ve played the solo play. Okay, play some against the AI - hey look, there’s some achievements for that. You know, maybe you should try to get some of those. You know, maybe you should try this casual league. There’s no rushing on these maps, by the way, we’ve blocked everything off and made these maps just really no fun for the hardcore guys, but really fun for you, right, because you’re scared of being rushed. Play on that one a little bit, and oh, by the way, here’s a score screen with some really relevant stats. Hey, there’re some challenges, you should try these.”
Given the rabid fandom that surrounds StarCraft, having this kind of multiplayer design approach should prove highly successful in getting new players into all-out multiplayer battles far quicker than most other online RTS games, and ensuring that they aren't obliterated within a few short minutes. Of course, we’ll just have to wait and see if that ends up being the case when the game ships early next year.
And to find out more about what Blizzard is concocting for StarCraft II, be sure to check out Brian Leahy’s full interview.