Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Starcraft 2 Beta Keys

I've had a beta key for a solid 2 months now. It's been fantastic. GameStop is running a deal where pre-ordering gets you a beta key. I feel obligated to pass this information along wherever I can.

Standard Edition
Collector's Edition

Also, my name is now, and will be (when the game goes live), Dhinanta.dhinanta.

A side note: Blizzard has ripped off Warhammer Fantasy and 40k in every way possible really (Terran = Space Marines, Zerg = Tyranids, Protoss = Eldar). It's fun to think of their games in Warhammer terms sometimes :)

I actually feel compelled to do a full on unit comparison...expect that tonight/tomorrow.


  1. How does the game work out?

    I remember really enjoying the first one and playing that a whole bunch. I'll be honest, the inspiration from 40k never bothered me (if indeed that's where they took it from).

    The idea of a hyper-aggressive bio-weapon race is hardly unique to 40k and you could say that a lot of the core tyranid shapes came from Alien and perhaps Geiger's works.

    Still, hoping the game is a good'un

  2. Oh, it's fantastic. It's a large part of why my blog has utterly died. I've played two games since I got the key. The only thing that inspried that burst of Nurgle stuff was my killing my graphics card >.>

    It's a lot faster than the original, and there are no "bad units". I find it to be a lot more strategy and reaction than "Oh...I didn't know ______ sucked." It's also much harder to just mass one unit and win. To be fair, I'm playing at a fairly competitive level. Not pro, but there is an automatic league and ranking system and I've been in the top 8 (of roughly 100 people) ever since I got my bearings.

    To the Blizzard vs Games Workshop stuff: It's not really disputed. Warcraft 1 was pitched to Games Workshop as a Warhammer RTS and there was a long bitter lawsuit over it when they released it as "Warcraft". It was basically resolved with one word "Tolkein". Then when Starcraft came out it started again. The resolution there was "This is going to be way agree to never make a tabletop mini game and we'll let it go."

    Zerglings are Hormagaunts. Hydralisks are Raveners. Ultralisks are Carnafex. Marines are Space Marines. Firebats are Flamer Space Marines. Goliaths are Dreadnoughts.

    To include a new unit, the new Marauder is basically a Terminator (I really with they'd given them a personal shield to cap it off, lol).

    This one does have a good bit or originality to it, which is cool. All-in-all I don't care if Blizzard rips off other stuff (legally). They make it better (usually) and I really enjoy their games. They're fun, something a large section of the game development community has lost sight of.

  3. When I say I've played two games, I meant of Warhammer. I have played over 200 games of SC2...and that's since the first profile wipe (Reset rankings and records).

  4. Yeah, it's a shame GW didn't hop on the offerings from Blizzard. Starcraft had a great storyline as it was but it could have been given such a big depth if 40k could have been part of it.

    I'm totally with you on fun games. It's important to remember at all stages of game design that the players must end up enjoying the experience. Fancy graphics and so on (Crysis) will only wow for a bit before people get bored. I've not played the game but while the videos look incredible, many people complained that the latter part of the game was extremely dull and uninspired.

    Good news on the game and well done for doing well in the rankings for it. Shame about your graphics card. What kind was it? Perhaps you should invest in one of the fancy new Radeon 5000 series cards :-)


  5. Yeah I figured that was the gaming you were talking about :-D

  6. I did play Crysis. It was okay, but they were really just trying to sell an engine. The expansion was a lot better and the sequel looks to be a "Game" as opposed to a graphics demo too. So here's hoping :)

    Back to Starcraft 2: The graphics of the game are very, very sexy. The zerg look disgusting. Some of their buildings literally look like a pile of writhing intestines when they build.

    I think the best part of the awesome graphics is how modular they made it. If you turn them all the way down it gets very cartoony, but runs smoothly on my roommates machine from 2002. If you turn them way up, it almost looks like a good sci-fi movie.

    As to the graphics card...Um...I have a GeForce 9800GX2. It weighs 5 pounds and is basically 2 graphics cards in one housing (Imagine dual core cpu, but this is dual graphics card.) It runs pretty hot. I got uppity and tried to replace the thermal grease and failed. It's out being repaired at the moment.

    The worst part is the overheating problem was because my cpu heatsink sucked (it was running at 80ºC it's at 41ºC with the new heatsink) and it was super heating the air in the case. Hopefully I'll get it back soon and all will be well. Until then I'm on my wife's machine...which has an equally ridiculous card (also a 9800GX2. They both used to be in my machine, but holy hell does 4 graphics cards make "copious excess" not a redundant phrase.)

  7. Oooh the GX2. That was a beast of a card. I'm really impressed with the engineering behind dual GPU cards.

    Have you seen the latest insane test on Tweaktown. It's a 5970 (two radeon 5870 GPUS) with a massive overclock and 4gb of RAM. The damn card is putting out 300+FPS on some games with everything turned way up.

    If your card isn't fixable, you could pick up a nice Radeon 5770 for cheap (~$160) that will be almost as fast as well as much lower on the heat and power consumption. Of course, there are much beastier cards available but that means less money for 40k ;-)

    I'm looking forward to Crysis 2 also. I think that looks really good and will bring some good stuff to the table story wise as well as graphics.

  8. On a card-to-card basis, only the 400 series catches up to the 9800GX2, and they just released those. I'm also one of those guys that has always been nVidia and won't blaspheme to install an ATI card :)

    My ultimate goal is also to water cool the system with both 9800GX2s in it.

    In theory it will lead to quad-sli with 8GB of 2000mhz DDR3 RAM (with a sync'd 2000mhz FSB) and a 4.5ghz-5ghz processor.

    I don't want to do that until it's "necessary" (i.e. ~1-2 years from now). The $700 to watercool it will be cheaper than buying a new machine and it should be fairly comparable at that point. All of the parts were purchased for future overclockability.

    My favorite part about Crysis 2: It has lower system requirements than Crysis. They went back and fixed their engine. They did terrible things to achieve those effects.

  9. I think the new engine seems really solid and I'm very impressed with it. I'm looking forward to the time I can afford a good PC and play all these fun games.

    I've always been slightly on ATI's side of the fence, though I will not deny the excellent engineering that has come out from Nvidia and during the 8800 days, I wouldn't have chosen ATI. Now, though, the Geforce 400 series is not much faster than ATI, generally more expensive, runs pretty noisy (from all accounts) and sucks in some cases 100W more power in games.

    I think that when Nvidia fix their engineering on this generation it will be worth looking at but at the moment, they are pretty much outmatched. Still, I never count out either of the two companies because they've traded major blows so many times before (Geforce 3, Radeon 9700, Geforce 8/200, Radeon 4000/5000). Competition is always good.

    That will be a sweet PC once it's all water cooled and ready to run like lightning.

    I recently put in an application to do quest design at Bethesda Softworks (Oblivion and Fallout 3) so if I get that job, I might end up getting to play with cool PCs for work as well as fun :-)


  10. That's sort of why I like the 9800GX2 so much, it's basically two overpowered 8800s in a sort of super fast SLI.

    It's kind of crazy to me how close you and OSH are...that we just happened into each other. The power of the internet and all that. That your apparently a tech nerd and game designer too is just that much funnier.

    I know some people that work over there. By all accounts it's a sweet environment. And it is definitely awesome to have a computer at work that you can run real games on. Lunch time SupCom, Left4Dead, Starcraft 2 (now that they all have beta keys too) is just awesome :)

    Good luck with the application :)

  11. Yeah, the whole putting two cards into hyper SLI/Crossfire is really impressive and looks so cool to me.

    Yeah it is really quite something. Also Asmo from Boisterous Exhuberance is in the Glen Burnie area so it's all very close and comfy here lol.

    Is there a chance that any of your friends there would be interested in chatting/emailing with me to see if there is a way I can help boost my chances to get in? I know it's rude to ask sometimes but I saw a statistic recently that said something like 80% of jobs are found because of networking.

    If there is any chance with that, drop me an email at

    I appreciate it and I'm looking forward to meeting up at some point for a nice game of 40k. Perhaps we can all go up to the Glen Burnie Battle Bunker and throw down 2v2 (Me and you with tau vs OSH and Asmo playing marines/sisters). That would be a sweet game.

  12. One day I will get my introverted self out of my apartment and down to a store to actually play with new people :) It will day >.<

    Sent/sending you an e-mail (depending on how fast you check this).

  13. Got your email and I'm writing back to it. You sir are the man and I owe you a beer or three when we meet, regardless of how my application turns out there.

    Lucily the IT guy here is supportive of what I'm doing and thinks it would be a cool job to have. He's setting me up with an old desktop that can run Fallout 3 (at least on low detail) so I can have a place to work on the GECK in my lunch break because my laptop sometimes struggles with Morrowind's editor. With any luck I can get up to speed and really have a shot at things.

    I appreciate all of your advice and so on.


    PS: Sending you an email back too.