StarCraft: Hands of Power -- Completed!

(June 6th, 2009 - June 15th, 2009) Completed: July 31st, 2009
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby thebrowncloud » Fri Jul 17, 2009 9:14 pm

Alright, so we have made it through the first 15 missions. they arent perfect, but theyre pretty much done. we just need to test them and fix any bugs that they may have. We havent gotten around to getting screenshots yet, as we've been working our asses off. we should get u some in a couple of days (and this time for real. we know the whole "big update" thing last week didnt happen. it was going to be our first 6 maps as a demo to the series, which we still may do.) As far as our series goes, its a very traditional bunch of missions and is the kind of thing that Blizzard would have made back in the 90s with SC1. We like to think that some of our objectives are slightly unique and go well with the story, but you guys will be the judges of that because we havent been here that long :). And, by traditional, I mean no mods, no mini-games (still kinda unclear as to what those are), no boss battles, nothing. It's StarCraft the way it was originally intended to be played. Would anyone care to see a list of all the characters we use? Or do you think that is to big of a spoiler? It's really not too big of a mystery, but whatever you guys would like!

10 more missions to go, then testing! Wish us luck!
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby Church » Sat Jul 18, 2009 8:47 am

thebrowncloud wrote:Alright, so we have made it through the first 15 missions. they arent perfect, but theyre pretty much done. we just need to test them and fix any bugs that they may have. We havent gotten around to getting screenshots yet, as we've been working our asses off. we should get u some in a couple of days (and this time for real. we know the whole "big update" thing last week didnt happen. it was going to be our first 6 maps as a demo to the series, which we still may do.) As far as our series goes, its a very traditional bunch of missions and is the kind of thing that Blizzard would have made back in the 90s with SC1. We like to think that some of our objectives are slightly unique and go well with the story, but you guys will be the judges of that because we havent been here that long :). And, by traditional, I mean no mods, no mini-games (still kinda unclear as to what those are), no boss battles, nothing. It's StarCraft the way it was originally intended to be played. Would anyone care to see a list of all the characters we use? Or do you think that is to big of a spoiler? It's really not too big of a mystery, but whatever you guys would like!

10 more missions to go, then testing! Wish us luck!


Your'e doing great! Keep it up!
Traditional misssions... I always liked Starcraft more than Starcraft: Brood War, I hope it's more like that, on the whole that sounds AWESOME!

Weelll... Overall it's up to you to realease the characters, I would like to see them ;D but overall it's up to you. As for a demo, I'm all for it! I would like your campaign more, but a demo would be cool!
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby thebrowncloud » Sat Jul 18, 2009 4:24 pm

The best examples of minigames basically come from some of the "big city" maps.  From Life of a Marine, there's a "big city" mission where the characters can go to a casino and gamble on zergling battles, or play a 'mini-starcraft' game where you buy units and fight an enemy group of units.  Aeon of the Hawk also had a big city map where you were supposed to get minerals by competing in arena battles.  It was sort of an rpg-lite deal. 

Of course, the most obvious example of non-campaign based mini games is MilleniumArmy's fantastic "Mini-Game Party" that basically is one of the pinnacles of modless triggering imo. 

Ah, I see. That sounds pretty cool. It would be a nice feature to any campaign, but, unfortunately for us, time is not on our side. We'll have to keep it in mind for future projects. Thanks!

Alright, so a small list of characters (I won't include them all, as some of them do give away parts of the plot):
Main Characters:
Arcturus Mengsk
Alexei Stukov
Jim Raynor
Artanis
Zeratul

Supporting Characters:
Gui Montag
Colonel Hauler
General Martin (from Mercenaries)
Tom Kazansky
Magellan
Matt Horner
Eredas
Mojo
Selendis
Danimoth (pilot to be named.... maybe)
Warbringer
Taldarin
Kendratis (the only made-up character on this list)
and many more! (15 more official Blizzard characters and 6 that we made up)
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby thebrowncloud » Sat Jul 18, 2009 4:40 pm

Krazy wrote:
Colonel Hauler
Eredas
Selendis
Taldarin

Where are those 4 from?

Colonel Jackson Hauler is the leader of Nova Squadron, the Confederate/Dominion black-ops branch. He was going to be in StarCraft: Ghost before it got cancelled, but the StarCraft Manual says that he is canon (I believe....?)

Selendis is the current (as in post-BW) Executor of the protoss Hierarchy on Shakuras. She is basically Artanis' right hand and is featured in SC2 and the novel, StarCraft: The Dark Templar Saga: Twilight

Eredas is the hero that the player rescues in the second Enslavers campaign, Enslavers: Dark Vengeance. He was only a playable unit in one mission and he was technically expendable, but that's no fun!

Taldarin was the dragoon hero that fought alongside Jim Raynor on Braxis in the Resurrection IV mission (the one where Alexei Stukov is resurrected via infestation and then de-infested). Fun fact: He claims to have fought alongside Adun, but that would make him approximately 1200 years old (minimum). The average life-span of a protoss who isn't killed in combat is about 1000 years. Raszagal was 1045 when she died.
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby Dem0nS1ayer » Sat Jul 18, 2009 5:35 pm

That's true, but Raszagal was basically killed in combat.  She was infested, then Zeratul destroyed her statis prison. :P
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby thebrowncloud » Sat Jul 18, 2009 6:24 pm

Dem0nS1ayer wrote:That's true, but Raszagal was basically killed in combat.  She was infested, then Zeratul destroyed her statis prison. :P

Not infested. Mind-controlled. There is a bit of a difference. Had she been infested, Zeratul and the other protoss would have noticed. Plus, the whole "infested protoss" thing still needs to be cleared up by Blizzard because Metzen and Browder have both said that infesting protoss is impossible because they can "repel the infestation virus psionically" or something like that. Yet, in StarCraft Frontline: Volume 2, one of the stories portrayed an infested protoss zealot.

But, back onto the topic at hand, Raszagal was considered old when she died. She may have been killed, but she probably wouldn't have lasted much more than a few decades.

Source: StarCraft Manual, starcraft.wikia.com
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby thebrowncloud » Mon Jul 20, 2009 6:59 pm

Okay, so I recently picked up a copy of StarCraft: DTS: Twilight and decided to read that first before we made it any further in our series (Tim still made the terrains, but we didn't take it any farther than that). I just wanted to see if we needed to change any of our story arcs because of new developments in the book. However, what Zeratul actually did between June 2501 and sometime in 2505 was made clear to me:
[spoiler]nothing![/spoiler]

So, with this shocking development, we hereby cancel the Zeratul story arc in our series (bringing the mission count down to 20) We may still release a modified version of the story arc later, depending on whether or not the lore permits it (still have 50 pages to go in DTS Twilight). Our count on completed maps is down to 12, so we will be focusing the remainder of our time on the other 8 and then testing (if time permits).

P.S. DTS Twilight is absolutely fantastic! Anyone who hasn't read the three book series should pick it up. I wouldn't say it's a necessity to read it, but it does reveal alot about the coming events in SC2, if you care to know more. And, honestly, who doesn't want some more SC lore???
[spoiler]no one! that's who![/spoiler]
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby thebrowncloud » Mon Jul 20, 2009 7:59 pm

Krazy wrote:Would you say anything from the SC books are actual must-reads?  The only book I actually got through was the one of Michael Liberty, and that was mostly because it was pretty much just a novelization of the Terran campaign in SC1.  I have the Queen of Blades but keep getting bored with it before I get past chapter three or four.  Seems like there's a lot in the wiki based on the ghost books maybe, but I don't know anything really worth it?

That is kind of a tough question.... Although i thoroughly enjoy getting any bit of SC lore I can firsthand (and maybe eventually posting it myself on the wiki, if someone didn't beat me to it), but some of them definitely are wastes of time. The one you read, Liberty's Crusade, was an example of such a book. Everything that happened in it was already in the game, so it basically just gives you a little bit more context on the events.

Shadow of the Xel'Naga was a terrible story, but the concept of the xel'naga temple that is brought forward is actually seemingly very important (I won't spoil anything, but they are most definitely related to the xel'naga's role in SC2).

Speed of Darkness was a good story, but it doesn't tell you anything important. It is more just to understand what a resocialized marine's life is like and shows some of what the Confederacy did to strike back against the zerg on Chau Sara before it was destroyed.

Queen of Blades gets much more interesting, I find, in the later parts of the book. It's whole purpose was to explain why Raynor ended up with Tassadar on Char in the first protoss campaign and how Tassadar overcame the prejudice against the dark templar. It's a great story (despite some of the biggest canonical errors in any of the novels) and shows alot of great character development for Raynor, Tassadar, and Zeratul. It also shows the first appearance of Matt Horner :).

Ghost: Nova, in my mind, was a huge disappointment just because I was expecting something a little bit more action-packed and...... ghosty? It's more of a buildup to how Nova went from her old life, a daughter of one of the rich noble families of the terran confederacy, to her current role, an obedient killer (and the transition isn't that exciting. It's more..... depressing.)

I, Mengsk is actually pretty good. It gives you every detail about the Mengsk family history that you could ever want and then some. It starts with Angus Mengsk, Arcturus' father, at the center of the story and switches to Arcturus and then the new character, Valerian Mengsk. It portrays the birth of the Sons of Korhal, why Korhal was destroyed in the first place (with pretty much all the context you could want coming from Angus' story), and goes all the way to giving a very good intro to Valerian, his views, and his differences from his father. Arcturus' story can seem a little slow, but it shows a very drastic evolution from his teenage years to the way he is now. A good read, but can be boring at times.

The Dark Templar Saga is just great because it not only gives you some good insight into the future of the StarCraft universe (SC2), but it shows you some very important moments in protoss history, such as the story behind Adun. Plus, alot of protoss customs and the way they live are revealed (which I find to be fascinating). I don't want to give anything else away, because, out of all the books, these three are the must-reads.

Oh, and I forgot a few things.

Uprising (which is only available in e-book form or in the Archive collection, which is one book that contains Liberty's Crusade, Shadow of the Xel'Naga, Speed of Darkness, and Uprising) was actually a really good book that follows Arcturus Mengsk and Sarah Kerrigan in the early activites of the Sons of Korhal. It reveals alot of significant (the less passionate could say "interesting") information about Sarah's past. It explains what the "experiments with the zerg" that Jim Raynor mentioned at New Gettysberg are, as well as many other unknown and surprising things. I also stress that none of this is mentioned in I, Mengsk (the entire occurence skipped over, actually), so don't think that reading that one will reveal everything you would learn from this one. I really like this one as well.

The Frontline graphic novel series is a whole bunch a very short stories with alot of nice artwork in them (if you have an appeciation for the manga art-style). None of them are drastically important and you could learn everything about them on the wiki, but they are nonetheless entertaining. Two significant series for the future, however, are one series where the son of a senator for the Dominion is a psychic and tries to avoid being forced into the Ghost Program (which will tie into the coming StarCraft: Ghost graphic novel series coming out next year) and another series where a Dominion scientist creates a terran-protoss hybrid (I know, I think it sounds stupid, too, but hopefully the Frontline series will kill it off before it sees the light of day on our computer screens). The biggest downside to the Frontline series is that they are expensive (at $11 for each volume, which there are currently 3 and a 4th coming in september). They bring interesting concepts to the table, but nothing I would say you MUST know for SC2. If you don't wanna pay the money for it just use the wiki.

Or if you don't want to pay the money or spend the time reading any of the books, the wiki will tell you really anything you would want to know about them.
Last edited by thebrowncloud on Tue Jul 21, 2009 12:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby thebrowncloud » Tue Jul 21, 2009 12:45 am

Krazy wrote:
Colonel Hauler
Eredas
Taldarin


Did you actually play SC64?  And what are Hauler and Taldarin from?

Sorry, I didn't see your edit until just now. I rented SC64 once, played it, hated it, and never picked it up again. However, the mission exclusive to it (Resurrection IV) was recreated for the PC version a while later. That is where I played it (and actually where I even heard of it to begin with). I would have probably bought SC64 and eventually found the mission if the controls for the game weren't as retarded as they are.  >:(
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby Maglok » Tue Jul 21, 2009 3:51 am

The problem I usually have with SC novels is that the archive is awesome, but pockets are so small and annoying to read I tend to wait for them to come up with another archive/collection. They bundled War of the Ancients I hope they bundle the Dark Templar Saga the same. That said I did read some bits here and there and it sounds very very awesome.
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby omega20 » Tue Jul 21, 2009 7:57 am

thebrowncloud wrote:
Queen of Blades gets much more interesting, I find, in the later parts of the book. It's whole purpose was to explain why Raynor ended up with Tassadar on Char in the first protoss campaign and how Tassadar overcame the prejudice against the dark templar. It's a great story (despite some of the biggest canonical errors in any of the novels) and shows alot of great character development for Raynor, Tassadar, and Zeratul. It also shows the first appearance of Matt Horner :).


Maybe, but if you watch more carefully, you'd learn that this novel's lore isn't very trustable.

StarCraft wiki wrote:
StarCraft: Queen of Blades deviated from the StarCraft storyline on multiple occasions.

- Char was described as being in a system with one visible sun, but both suns are visible in the between-levels artwork; the two suns are also discussed in StarCraft Maps of the Month.

- The sequence of events around the death of Zasz were very different. In the game, Tassadar and Zeratul had seemingly formed an alliance by this time, but were hiding from the Zerg. Kerrigan detected them with her newfound powers after leaving the Amerigo with the knowledge of the Ghost Program. Tassadar lured her into combat with an illusion while Zeratul slew Zasz.

- Zasz's Garm Brood was then destroyed by Zerg commanded by the player Cerebrate (this would be Kerrigan's personal Brood). In the novel, Zeratul slew Zasz before he even met Tassadar, the Garm were destroyed by Daggoth's Tiamat Brood, Kerrigan faced Tassadar many times before being fooled by the illusion (which happened after the death of Zasz) and used lines that occurred earlier in the game (when Zasz was being set up for assassination), and only later did Tassadar and Zeratul form an alliance.

- Later during the Zerg missions, Kerrigan destroyed a substantial portion of the Protoss base and slew many Dark Templar while holding aggressive conversations with Zeratul. Zeratul was later captured and had to be rescued from a terran installation. In the novel, Eye for an Eye is ignored and skipped with Zerg fighting Protoss much later and loosing the battle heavily rather than winning. The Protoss were then immediately "reinforced" by Aldaris and Artanis.

- Zeratul is repeatedly referred to as Praetor, rather than his correct rank, Prelate, though it is possible that the Prelate is the Dark Templar analogue of Praetor.


The point is that you shouldn't consider as truly canon the lore shown on the novels unless there are any other reference for it on any other Blizz materials. Actually, the only ones I consider truly canon are the ones from the DT Saga (considered by Blizzard as the introduction of SC II) and other books or novels that doesn't interfere with the SC storyline shown to us on the Blizzard campaigns and those which follow the campaigns plot without changing them (and example should be Liberty's Crusade, that changes little to nothing  the original SC Terran campaign storyline adding its own story).
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby Maglok » Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:41 am

You know it has been stated again and again that all novels are canon. That they do not agree on every aspect, that's where it gets interesting. So any novel is canon, blizzard authorized of course, just the details that dont add up are the question.
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby thebrowncloud » Tue Jul 21, 2009 11:00 am

The point is that you shouldn't consider as truly canon the lore shown on the novels unless there are any other reference for it on any other Blizz materials. Actually, the only ones I consider truly canon are the ones from the DT Saga (considered by Blizzard as the introduction of SC II) and other books or novels that doesn't interfere with the SC storyline shown to us on the Blizzard campaigns and those which follow the campaigns plot without changing them (and example should be Liberty's Crusade, that changes little to nothing  the original SC Terran campaign storyline adding its own story).

Yeah, thats what i meant by it having the most canonical errors of any book. One thing that everyone thought was an error (Artanis being an executor) turned out to be a retcon, so who knows how many of these "errors" aren't the official way it happened.
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Re: StarCraft: Hands of Power

Postby omega20 » Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:57 am

Maglok wrote:You know it has been stated again and again that all novels are canon. That they do not agree on every aspect, that's where it gets interesting. So any novel is canon, blizzard authorized of course, just the details that dont add up are the question.


Yeah. But I'm not saying that they aren't officialy canon, as I know Blizzard authorized them. I'm just saying that they aren't truly canon for me. :P

thebrowncloud wrote:Yeah, thats what i meant by it having the most canonical errors of any book. One thing that everyone thought was an error (Artanis being an executor) turned out to be a retcon, so who knows how many of these "errors" aren't the official way it happened.


Actually, I'd find it kinda weird to see the events shown on Queen of Blades as a retcon, specially when most of them do happen in a different way on the original Blizzard campaigns.

Anyways, it's upon you to consider those events as canon or not. Blizzard authorized the novels, so they're officialy canon. If you want to portray as truly canon the Blizz campaign's lore or the novel's lore is another matter. ;)
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