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Warcraft III: Reforged Review-in-Progress


Warcraft III: Reforged

28th January, 2020

Platform PC

Publisher Activision-Blizzard

Developer Blizzard

It's been a very long eighteen years since the original release of Warcraft III. Seventeen years from The Frozen Throne expansion and an amazing sixteen years since World of Warcraft. Frankly, if someone had asked me if World of Warcraft was released just two years after Warcraft III, I would have said no, it's impossible. I would have been wrong. So, almost two decades after its original release, how has Blizzard worked through the re-release and remaster of what is a true classic of the strategy genre? Welcome to Warcraft III: Reforged.

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As a result of the campaign not having been unlocked prior to launch for review purposes, I've spent the hours I can with Warcraft III: Reforged prior to launch on the multiplayer beta - which is by all accounts and hands-on experience the same as the multiplayer non-beta - and post-launch hours on a small amount of the campaign. As such this is a review in progress (this text will remain even when the review is completed) where I'll start by talking about the multiplayer. When I've completed the campaign I can talk about what works and doesn't work, particularly with the changes they've made.

Fortunately, what playing the multiplayer does allow is a good grasp of how everything plays and looks. Even with the updated nature of the game, this was never going to be the best looking game around but Blizzard has certainly done more than a few small, quick updates. There's been an extensive amount of work done on the environments, character models and animations, with even the destruction of buildings being represented in much finer detail.

It makes for a generally attractive game, one that's so incredibly nostalgic for somebody like me whose first venture into the Warcraft universe was with the strategy games. You can recognise the buildings and units that you used almost two decades ago, with a few added flourishes, shadows and detail, particularly the detail on the attacks and abilities of special units. This extra detail is also supported by a superior and cleaner user interface.

In addition to the superior user interface, bringing in modern sensibilities to Warcraft III: Reforged, Blizzard have also got the game working smoother and simply faster than that of the original, as you would expect from a revamped version of a game from eighteen years ago. Another amazing aspect is that the community is there, with the game allowing people to play one version against each other, from RISK to Tower Defense, Pokémon, and even more. This is the same modding community that literally started new genre's, you've got a lot to work through.

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Of course, with the modding community comes the option for you to join in and start creating yourself. Working with this is the revamped map editor, made clearer and a little more user-friendly than the one you may remember from the past. Joining the new map editor is the support of Battle.net, meaning the connection between players is all well supported and includes all of the social and matchmaking features you find with other Battle.net supported titles.

All in all, playing multiplayer with everything available in Warcraft III: Reforged is a great experience. It's a smooth, attractive and altogether great experience for those who are wanting to see the game that started the DOTA craze as well as a game with one of the most thriving and energetic modding communities in the world. Most of all, it gives people the chance to play what still remains one of the best strategy games ever made. That's multiplayer - so how is the single-player? I'll get back to you soon.

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