Games like Starcraft and Warcraft weren’t just good real-time strategy games, they were formative for a whole generation of gamers. Many of the tens of millions of WoW players from the early days only got into the MMO because of their connection to Warcraft and made it the most popular online role-playing game of its time. Despite being in a different genre, Warcraft is the direct predecessor of WoW.
And that was no coincidence. Because not only the unique story of the Warcraft series could inspire. Also from a gameplay point of view, at least the later parts were a revelation, which are still among the most popular RTS of all time. Starcraft, which revolutionized the genre years after Warcraft with its two parts plus various expansions, also takes the same line.
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Still extremely successful
Starcraft is still considered by many RTS experts to be the best real-time strategy game of all time. Above all, the excellent balancing, which is not a matter of course given the three factions, is still impressive today. It is not for nothing that Starcraft is still one of the most played esports titles years after its release. After all, Starcraft came onto the market in 1998, the second part in 2010!
Starcraft is still played happily today – not only by esports players. Source: Moby Games
How successful both titles are is also shown by Blizzard’s attempts to score points on the market with various remakes. In the case of Starcraft Remake, one could certainly call that a success internally. In the case of Warcraft Reforged, however, it ended in a fiasco. But that was hardly because the players didn’t feel like it, but rather because Blizzard implemented the remake extremely carelessly and poorly. Many players went back to the original games disappointed.
Are we seeing the resurrection of Warcraft and Starcraft?
With the takeover by Microsoft, a breath of fresh air is now blowing at Blizzard. A better wind, one hopes. At the very least, the reputation that Microsoft has built up by buying from other studios is significantly more positive than Activision’s. It has long been clear that Microsoft has no plans to simply ignore potentially successful franchises from the studios it has bought.
This caused the first, faint hopes of the fans that we would soon get a continuation of the popular and successful brands. So far, however, nothing has happened. Understandable, after all, the deal between Microsoft and Blizzard is far from dry. Xbox boss Phil Spencer has now poured fuel on the fire of hope again.
Phil seems to be in the mood for it!
In an interview with Wired Magazine, Xbox boss Phil Spencer was actually talking about 25 years of Age of Empire, but the conversation also touched on other RTS. When people asked about a potential Starcraft successor, Phil Spencer’s enthusiasm could be read between the lines.
Xbox boss Phil Spencer is a big fan of Warcraft and Starcraft. Source: PC Games Hardware
He called both Warcraft and Starcraft “a landmark moment in gaming history” and praised both games for their “genre impact, the esports world and their storytelling.”
He said he’s looking forward to “sitting down with the teams at Activision, Blizzard and King and talking about their game catalog and the opportunities that come with it.”
That there is more behind it became clear at the latest when Phil Spencer said openly that he would “deliberately avoid the question of a successor at this point” and only say “that it’s not something he can actively work on at the moment. But just the thought of thinking about what might happen to these franchises in the future would be pretty exciting.”
The history of Warcraft ultimately brought many players to WoW. Source: Blizzard
He MUST NOT say anything yet!
Even before answering the question, he makes it clear that he can’t make decisions about what’s happening at Activision, King or Blizzard and can’t “just go to the teams and talk to them about it.” He has no concrete plans for anything related as he “is not allowed to work with the teams.”
Will we get a Starcraft Ghost at some point? Source: Blizzard That is also perfectly clear. Because Blizzard (like King and Activision) is not yet part of Microsoft. Officially, there is no connection or handle yet. While we’re not experts in the field, if Phil Spencer openly admits that he’s already working with the new hires, there’s bound to be a mountain of legal trouble. As is well known, US law is very strict for listed companies.
If you take all the statements together, then you can probably assume that Microsoft wants to continue both Starcraft and Warcraft as a series. Of course, none of that has been confirmed yet and it won’t be anytime soon. But if you think that Phil Spencer and his Xbox team don’t already have various ideas and plans in their pockets, you’re probably wrong.
We say: “Do it, Phil!”
We’re not just saying that because we’re really in the mood for a new Warcraft or Starcraft part. It would be a win-win-win-win-win-win (we don’t want to stop writing Win) move for Blizzard and Microsoft! Everyone would benefit massively.
It’s extremely important for Microsoft that the acquisition of Activision Blizzard is viewed in a positive light. What would help more than fulfilling the die-hard fans’ long-standing desire for a successor to the two series? As the first joint projects of Microsoft-Blizzard, they could become prestige objects that are perceived as representative of the new cooperation.
Blizzard, on the other hand, could polish up its tarnished reputation in no time at all with a good Warcraft 4 or Starcraft 3. Things like WoW: Shadowlands, Diablo: Immortal and Warcraft 3 Reforged would not be forgotten, but they would probably be pushed back in the minds of the players.
Of course, it would be urgently necessary for the two parts to be of high quality and not have any dubious Pay2Win mechanisms or the like on board. If both sides realize how much they have to gain and how much prestige and image is at stake, it should be manageable. I wouldn’t trust Blizzard alone, but together with Microsoft I see it very positively.
StarCraft 2: Free2Play-Launch-Trailer mit Pay2Win-Spott
The Warcraft Adventure was almost finished, but was never published. Source: Blizzard It’s pretty clear to us – even if, we emphasize that nothing is confirmed at this point – that we will get a successor to Warcraft 3 and Starcraft 2. Time will tell if and how they will look like. However, the expectation should be gigantic. The game will probably not be able to fulfill these, but so be it. If we get a good Warcraft 4 and, more importantly to me, Starcraft 3, I’ll be happy.
Maybe that’s not all. A continuation of the franchise does not have to be limited to the original genres. Maybe we’ll get a Starcraft Ghost, a World of Starcraft or the Warcraft Adventure after all. With Microsoft resources behind you and an enthusiastic boss, anything is possible.