if Warcraft III wasnt 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 IIIs new expansion.
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 Nezhul, 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 kings 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 Id recommend
website for a comprehensive look at each one.
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
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 races strategy. The new units are
numerous and work well to balance out prior inadequacies. I sure
wouldnt worry about the Night Elves toughness now. Dont forget the
neutral heroes being added to the mix as well. If youve 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.