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Starcraft offers a lengthy single-player campaign featuring ten missions 

for its three diverse races, totaling 30 single-player missions in all 

(there's also an unsupported veteran campaign included as part of the campaign editor). 

The story is compelling enough to make playing through all three worthwhile, 

and the campaign difficulty is tiered so that each is more challenging than the last. 

While this may seem like an uninteresting point, it helps Starcraft to avoid the problem 

that has plagued every other game in the genre: Each side is not the same. You don't have to go 

through a set of training missions once you've already mastered one side. 

The missions themselves mainly stick to the "gather, build, and conquer" philosophy, 

but there are a few innovative missions thrown in, and Blizzard has added 

some narrative elements to the missions themselves that help to keep things interesting. 

With the exception of the installation missions (in which you are given a handful of 

units to raid an enemy base, an attempt to break from the mold that is only 

occasionally successful), the missions are well designed. The solo player also has 

the option of skirmish missions, though the computer opponents have the annoying ability 

to see everything you are doing and defend accordingly, making the dreaded "rush" 

tactic one of the only viable means of emerging victorious.

Starcraft offers an equally nice suite of options on the multiplayer side: 

There's head-to-head and up to eight-player battles over LAN or Internet 

(though Internet play is only available over Blizzard's Battle.net server, 

which includes a ranking list and seems to be as lag-free as it gets nowadays). 

There is a good variety of multiplayer game types, and you can easily download new maps. 

Multiplayer has its own set of negatives, the major one being the predominance of rushing. 

Like it or not, creating a horde of the most basic units and attacking the enemy 

immediately is an effective tactic. Only a heavily defended base will survive an 

early rush of Terran Marines or Protoss Zealots. Starcraft has a built-in safeguard 

to discourage rushing, but it's one of the game's most problematic areas.





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