Back somewhere in 2011 a guy named Ryan Winzen made a youtube movie of a mod he made using the ingame editor of Starcraft. He made Starcraft into World of Starcraft. Millions of youtubers got interested in the project, until one day Youtube had to remove the video because of a copyright claim of Blizzard.
Blizzard thought it was created using third party mods and software and not with the game editor provided. By the time they got to hear about the legitime side of the project, they surprisingly invited the guy over to the Campus and made sure he could start development again.
Hundreds of developers worldwide wanted to help the Ryan to create the mod or a game out of it.
The mod had to be renamed though, as World of Starcraft was a copyrighted name by Blizzard Entertainment. Starcraft Universe became the new name.
Now, nearly three years later, Starcraft Universe is on Kickstarter to gather some support and dollars to finish off the project into beta stage and finish off the first campaign. Ryan formed the company Upheaval Arts.
They require a minimum of 80.000 USD with additional stretch goals to add more functionality at a faster pace to the game. At time of writing they are at 75000, so with only 57 hours to go they need another 5000 USD to complete the funding.
Starcraft Universe is like a RPG game in the universe of Starcraft II. With the underlying Starcraft II engine and the on-top engine they program, they create a unique experience set in this world where you will find NPC’s giving you new missions to complete and offer you items and blueprints. With blueprints you can craft new items. You gain XP in the game to gain levels and experience raiding enemies and bosses with friends.
StarCraft Universe (SCU) is a game mod, not a standalone game, for StarCraft II. StarCraft Universe will be released as a series of custom games published through Battle.net.
StarCraft Universe tells a story set in an alternate reality, where the ending of StarCraft II:Wings of Liberty has a grim conclusion for Kerrigan. Without the Queen of Blades to stop the hybrid’s assault, the protoss are overwhelmed and defeated. In this reality, what would the survivors of these shattered worlds do? StarCraft Universe tells this story.
If you are worried that Blizzard would shut it down again or whether this project is legitimate, this is what Upheaval Arts has to say about this:
“While Blizzard is not directly affiliated with this project’s production, we do communicate with them to submit bug reports and make technical requests. They have given their blessing/permission for us to launch this Kickstarter, and they are supporting our efforts by featuring SCU as an arcade highlight.”
Starcraft Universe will be a free-to-play RPG mod, played via battle.net. You require an active battle.net account and either owning a copy of Starcraft II or using the freely available Starcraft II starter edition.
The mod can be downloaded and activated through the Battle.net arcade from within the game. Currently you can download the featured single-player demo of the mod. When this project succeeds you will be able to play the open beta and later on the released version.
Upheaval Arts made a how-to guide for new players you can check here.
Raid boss Gameplay
The Arcade section of Blizzard will make it possible to buy and download mods for the Blizzard games. The money that can be earned for these developers using the Arcade, can then also be used for expanding the mods.
In my opinion it is simply amazing what they have created, considering that the game is a third-person RTS game originally.
So, if you think that this mod should see daylight any time soon, please back this project.