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Warcraft III: Frozen Throne Preview
game: Warcraft III: Frozen Throne
posted by: GF! Back Catalogue 10/2004 => 1995
publisher: Blizzard
date posted: 09:10 AM Wed May 14th, 2003
last revision: 07:32 AM Fri Sep 23rd, 2005

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By Todd Allen

As if Warcraft III wasn\'t good enough, Blizzard has gone and prepared a major adrenaline shot for what many consider to be one greatest strategy titles ever created. Fans can expect a load of new missions as well as a slew of new units across the board. The game has been balanced a bit better, too. Remember the Night Elves\' pesky ineptitude for melee combat? No longer my friend, no longer.

The opening movie for Frozen Throne is, of course, beautiful. My only gripe with Blizzard about it was the awful time I had getting out of the booth, due to the hundred or so people huddled around, slacked-jawed and staring. After I watched it a couple times myself and quickly discarded some drool, I read the press release and picked up on the story behind Warcraft III\'s new expansion.

The story starts out a few months after Archimonde and the Burning Legion had their butts handed to them. Arthas, the fallen Paladin, is seeking out a new source of power far in the north called Icecrown. This structure is said to be the prison of Ne\'zhul, a Lich King who brought the undead menace to Azeroth in the first place. Arthas is not alone in his search, though. Illidan, once a Night Elf Demon Hunter, also seeks the undead king\'s tomb. He seems to be quite a bit more powerful than your average Hunter because the movie showed him summoning some nasty trident-bearing lizard men from out of the ocean to aid him in his campaign. The only ones standing in these guys\' way are the Human and Night Elf armies. The Orcs are interestingly, are not directly part of this equation. I was assured, though, that the Orcs will have plenty of new missions and a side story of their own.

Besides the new storyline, the most exciting aspect of this expansion is of course the new units and heroes. By making these new units Blizzard hopes to even out any balance issues. The Humans\' new hero is the Bloodmage, a potent wizard that can debuff his enemies and summon a powerful phoenix unit to aid him in battle. The Orcs\' hero, the Shadowhunter, is capable of powerful buffs and healing spells. Night Elves get a boost with the Warden, a knife-flinging warrior that can summon terrible creatures to attack her enemies. The Undead get the Crypt Lord, a spider-like hero with strong defense and the ability to gather locusts and carrion beetles and send them against his foes. There are many new units available for each race and I\'d recommend visiting Blizzard\'s website for a comprehensive look at each one.

Warcraft III: Frozen Throne also offers several new structures, most notably the shops. Each race has its own shop where special items may be purchased to give it the edge that race needs in the battles to come. One such item is the Sacrificial Skull found in the Undead shop. Players can use this to create an instant patch of blight, helpful for rapid expansion. Several new neutral buildings are to be added as well. These buildings will provide players with everything from neutral heroes to boats. Frozen Throne will support naval battles thank goodness.

Frozen Throne offers several new tools for players to work with. The world editor has been tweaked to allow you to form your own campaigns complete with cut scenes and voiceovers. Three new tile sets with their own unique critters will ship with the game as well as new multiplayer maps.

Warcraft III: Frozen Throne offers so much new material that staying away from it come release time will be quite impossible. The new heroes look and play great, adding new depth to each race\'s strategy. The new units are numerous and work well to balance out prior inadequacies. I sure wouldn\'t worry about the Night Elves\' toughness now. Don\'t forget the neutral heroes being added to the mix as well. If you\'ve strayed from those extended forays into Azeroth, prepare to return with a vengeance. Warcraft III: Frozen Throne is set to hit stores in early July.