Blizzard has announced it is bringing back its classic sci-fi real-time strategy (RTS) StarCraft in 'Remastered' form, boasting new graphics and support for 4K resolutions - and to help build hype it's making the original release available free of charge.
Blizzard is bringing classic StarCraft back, making the 1998 RTS and its expansion freely downloadable while teasing a high-definition Remastered release for summer.
Launched in March 1998 and expanded with the Brood War add-on in November that year, Blizzard's StarCraft puts the player in charge of one of three species - Terran, Zerg, or Protoss - in a clash of high-tech and bio-inspired weaponry. A massive critical success, StarCraft languished as Blizzard concentrated on its Diablo action role-playing and World of Warcraft massively multiplayer on-line role playing games; in 2010 the story continued with StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, the first version to include a 3D engine, followed by the Heart of the Swarm expansion in 2013 and Legacy of the Void in 2015.
Now, Blizzard has announced that StarCraft is going back to its roots - literally: the company is to launch StarCraft Remastered, which includes the original game and Brood War expansion with all-new graphics and a game engine supporting 4K resolutions. As well as graphical tweaks, the Remastered version includes new dialogue and audio, built-in support for friends lists and matchmaking, but - the company promises - entirely untouched gameplay. 'We’ve remastered our units, buildings, and environments, improved game audio, and broadened our supported resolutions,
' the company claimed in its announcement this weekend. '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.
To build up hype for the Remastered version, Blizzard has announced an update to StarCraft and its Brood War expansion which will include bug fixes and new features originally developed for the Remastered release. Better still, the game will be made available completely free of charge when the update is ready later this week - whether or not you already owned a copy. The Remastered version, naturally, will be a paid-for update when it launches in the summer.
More information is available from the official website