A free to play science fiction Multi-Player Online RPG played through Battle.net on StarCraft II. (No StarCraft purchase required)
*** Update: Multi-player-Raid boss demo game play with commentary by Ryan Winzen ***
Starcraft Universe: Chronicles of Fate trailer:
Please note the Blizzard Arcade Highlight video above only features content from the single-player demo.
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.
StarCraft Universe (SCU) is a game mod (Note: it is not a standalone game) for StarCraft II. Originally named World of StarCraft, SCU focuses on telling an epic story and intense combat action, as well as highly replay-able multi-player experiences. StarCraft Universe will be released as a series of custom games published through Battle.net.
The objective of this game is to experience the universe of StarCraft from a third person view and master a wide variety challenges, missions, and raiding experiences. The focus of the game is to have a team of players/friends, creating/customizing their own hero character which they use to battle together through enemy forces and powerful bosses in a rich and living environment.
Please note that this is just a quick listing of the most important features within the game. You can get more information and details by taking a look at our user guide right here.
- A unique story line by Ryan Winzen which plays out in an alternate StarCraft Universe.
You can read an introduction to the lore on our homepage.
- Custom model assets:
Kiefer 'Ghostnova' Traub, arguably the best kit basher in the world, rips apart, dissects, then re-imagines Blizzard assets in his own vision by combining and altering models and textures from World of WarCraft and StarCraft II. His art form allows for the creation of fully pre-animated model assets much faster than building them from scratch, and often has an equally as impressive result.
- A wide variety of monsters, bosses and character classes
Left-Click on the icons to view an alpha video demonstrating some of the abilities for each class.
- A persistent system to customize, save and load existing characters.
Each character can be customized upon creation and its progress will be saved permanently until it is deleted by the player.
- Hundreds of customizable weapons, combat modifiers and equipment variations to choose from.
StarCraft Universe features an advanced item system akin to World of Warcraft with a variety of stats, bonuses, and different gear slots.
- Single and Multiplayer experience
- Vehicle System featuring mounted multi-passenger combat
The game features an advanced vehicle system which allows the player to control vehicles. The vehicles are powered by fuel and have a unique ability set which differs from your class abilities.
Many items will be obtained by crafting them, meaning the player has to collect various components which then can be used to build a new item using a blueprint.
- Unique allocation ability system allowing the possibility of hundreds of unique builds per class.
StarCraft Universe features a unique ability system that gives players a wide range of freedom when customizing their character.
Abilities can be unlocked by paying with Minerals (this is the main resource in SCU).
Once an ability is unlocked, it can be learned at any time from a Class Mentor, adding it to the character's ability bar. An ability can also be unlearned in order to make room for different ones.
The capacity of the ability bar is limited, so it only allows the player to learn a certain amount of abilities at one time. Stronger abilities will require more points (combat weight) to add to the ability bar. This simple principle allows for heavy character customization for combat while giving the developers enough regulation to prevent flavor of the month (FoTM) builds..
Starcraft Universe features a unique, original soundtrack composed by David Orr, an award winning composer for games, animations, television and film.
Voice acting is performed by experienced professionals such as Michael Gough (StarCraft, Diablo, Dragon Age), Danielle McRae (World of Warcraft, League of Legends), and Eric Dieter (Heroes of Newerth, The Leviathan Chronicles).
- Fully voice acted cut-scenes!
StarCraft Universe allows customization of nearly every aspect of the game including arranging the various graphical interface elements to suit one's tastes or changing of hotkey preferences. In addition, there are other game settings which influence combat or display behavior.
- Difficulty and player scaling system
The game can be played in 4 different difficulty levels to be challenging and fun for players of all skill levels. It also features a player scaling system which automatically adjusts enemy strength based on player count. It doesn't matter if you play the game with two or five friends!
- Achievement System
Players can earn tons of achievements within the game by completing certain missions, defeating bosses and sometimes by completing crazy challenges.
- Enemy, loot and strategy information directly within the game
If there is a problem defeating a certain boss or you are simply looking for a specific item, you may use the in-game strategy window which displays all this information directly within the game.
Players already familiar with the MMO genre of gaming will pick up StarCraft Universe quickly, as the core game-play elements are very similar. For those who are not familiar with MMOs, we've developed an extensive user guide for players new to the game!
- You must have an internet connection and a gaming PC/Laptop.
- You must have a Battle.net Account. A Battle.net Account is the gaming membership required to play StarCraft II. You can sign-up at Battle.Net by clicking on "Create An Account". Sign-up is FREE and requires a valid e-mail address.
- If you don't own StarCraft II, you will need to download a FREE copy of the StarCraft II: Starter Edition here. Since the file size is very big, downloading may be paused and resumed at your own discretion.
- Downloading the project through the Arcade and start playing!
We must emphasize that all acts and expansions of SCU will be completely FREE to play through the StarCraft II: Starter Edition. You don't need to buy StarCraft II to play!
Yes and no! Here's a good article which clears up the confusion from 2011:
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.
Upheaval Arts is a small company formed in June, 2012 by the lead developer Ryan 'Kreation' Winzen. Made up of a small group of modding hobbyists, members of Upheaval Arts have been modding Blizzard RTS engines for over a decade in the creation of prototypes and custom games and are considered elite developers by Blizzard Entertainment.
Upheaval Arts contracts talented industry professionals and entertainers, aiming toward AAA content creation.
Upheaval is a company created by the fans, for the fans, developing one highly-demanded title - StarCraft Universe.
Upheaval has been developing StarCraft Universe for over two years with no funding whatsoever, donating their time and effort to its development with no monetary reward. All developers on the project have had to return to work their normal day jobs, dramatically hindering the progression of the project due to its time intensive requirements.
After releasing the StarCraft Universe Beta Prologue: Chronicles of Fate to the public, we're hoping to receive backing from the awesome StarCraft community to push our project forward and expand the team with sufficient funds to expedite the development process. With your help, we'll have the time, motivation, and resources we need to put that fresh looking AAA polish on SCU and get it out to you faster, better, and sexier.
Developing SCU is just as complex and time consuming as developing a stand-alone. Remember we've had to build a brand new engine on top of the StarCraft II engine for this to work.
Primarily, the money will be spent on the lead developers so we can produce the mod full-time just like a job. Split among us, we are taking a VERY small amount of money for basic living expenses over the next year of production. Remember that 80,000 quickly becomes 72,000 after Kickstarter and Amazon take their share, and then there's a 26% income tax on top of that. We also have to pay our voice actors, pay for software, hardware, our musical composer, and the list goes on.
Modding isn't anything like it used to be. People's standards are VERY high now, and to produce something of quality takes significant time, energy, and sacrifice.
Can I play a demo of the game before I decide to back it?
Yep! One of the great things about this project is that we already have so much done, you can test out a single-player beta version of the Prologue! Please note SCU is still in the Alpha stages of some elements of its development, but it's fully playable and still enjoyable!
To begin playing, just log into your StarCraft II client, click on the Arcade button, and search for Universe in the reach box! We should pop right up!
If you don't have the time to play through online, or haven't downloaded the StarCraft II: Starter Edition, you can check out this game-play video, or search "StarCraft Universe" on youtube to view some of the many player-uploaded videos and see their reactions.
OK. That was pretty cool. So, if this funding is successful, how will Upheaval Arts release StarCraft Universe, and how will it sustain itself to provide additional content in the future?
Because of our limited Staff, the first chapter we plan on releasing will be a multi-player open beta to test the core system functionality, combat balance, and progression rates of SCU through a gauntlet of challenges. Kickstarter pending, we will release this open BETA in late 2013/Early 2014.
Once we feel that all of the game elements are stable, we'll begin developing additional campaign missions as episodic content, released as completed.
Upheaval Arts believes that the Arcade which Blizzard is currently developing to support mod game sales will sustain our ability to provide content for players throughout StarCraft II's lifetime, but we need your help to continue until that point.
We have the talent, we have the drive, and we have the passion - Now all we need is your help.
En taro Adun!
All in-game rewards will be awarded once the first map of the initial stretch goal is finished. In order to receive the rewards, backers will be notified via their Kickstarter provided e-mail with additional instructions.
A relic aspect is a special piece of gear which changes the way your character looks and what stats it focuses on building. The class you are logged in with when receiving rewards will effect what Relic Aspect you receive.
The class you are logged in with when receiving rewards will effect what Weapon you receive.
Pets will be awarded in the form of an item which can be used to warp in the pet. Please note that pets do not take part in combat.
Vehicles will be awarded in the form of an item which can be used to warp in the vehicle.
SCV: The SCV is a single slot vehicle which has a channeled repair ability which can restore health on friendly or neutral mechanical units.
Troop Transport: This vehicle has multiple player slots. The first player who enters the vehicle is the driver and has access to its abilities, such as "Engine Overdrive" which makes the Troop Transport move faster but consume more fuel.
Tanker Truck: The tanker truck is a slow but durable mountable single-slot vehicle able to both tow and re-fuel other vehicles. Warning! If a tanker truck is destroyed it will instantly kill the driver and deal massive damage to both friendly and enemy units in a large radius. Can be used as a bomb in this manner if executed properly.
Armored Personnel Carrier: This huge vehicle has multiple player slots. The first player who enters the vehicle is the driver and has access to its abilities, such as "Engine Overdrive" which makes the vehicle move faster but consume more fuel. It also has the ability to deploy troops from the rear.
Battle Analyzer: This is a usable item which will give you an experience boost for a short period of time. This item gets consumed once it's used.
Mystery Box: The Mystery Box is a usable item which includes random items (Yes, there could be a Mystery Box within a Mystery Box!).
Starcraft Bottlecap Figurine Set
A rare figurine set containing a Hydralisk, a Marine and a Zealot.
Name an NPC
The development team will create an NPC of your desired name and put it somewhere in the game! You'll be able to choose the NPC's unit type, colors, and whether you'd like to it be a vendor or assist your party in combat! Please note that the development team still has the last word on every name to assure the quality of the game.
Name an Item
The development team will create an item with your desired name. All of these items will be obtainable. Name an NPC is now also included with this reward! Please note that the development team still has the last word on every name to assure the quality of the game.
Name an explorable Planet and create its environment!
In Act 1 of SCU, players will be traveling to countless planets throughout the universe to search for more survivors and resources to maintain the operation of a massive star-ship.
Your pledge will grant you the privilege of designing your own immortalized planet in the StarCraft Universe. After successful funding we'll send you a survey allowing you to sculpt the planet's following specifications.
- Name (The name of your planet will be voice acted, prominently displayed when entering the zone and will be displayed on your mini-map.)
- Terrain features (IE. Heavy foliage, icy, volcanic, rocky, etc.)
- Lighting (The ambient lighting on your planet.)
- Sky Color
- Environmental Effects (Rain, snow, fire, lightning, etc.)
You will also be granted the name an NPC reward. Your NPC will be found on your planet, and if you manage to rescue him/her, will join your party's entourage back on the star-ship as a combatant or vendor. (your choice)
Please note that planets are small zones which are randomly generated based on your specifications. You will be able to fly to and execute a mission on your planet during Act 1.
Personalized recording from Eric Dieter, the voice of 'Zerash' from StarCraft Universe.
Eric Dieter is a professional voice actor with decades of experience in the industry, best known for his roles in Heroes of Newerth and the Leviathan Chronicles. This backing will get you a personalized mp3 recording for a ringtone or otherwise in the voice of Zerash with effects applied! You can also request anything else you'd like. He does a great Optimus Prime too... (15 second recording)
Option of Phone Call with legendary voice actress Danielle McRae or a personalized recording.
Danielle McRae is a professional voice actress who has recorded for games such as World of WarCraft, League of Legends, Planetside 2, Skull Girls, and more! Your donation will get you a phone call with her, or a personalized recording of her saying a line of whatever you like!
Boxed Collector's edition of StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm signed by the Blizzard Development team
Skype with Upheaval Arts for an hour
Your generous donation will get you a Skype conversation with our development team for up to an hour long! You can talk everything from game design, to what you're having for dinner with us. We'll have fun...
Work directly with the musical composer for StarCraft Universe, David Orr, to produce a soundtrack for the game under your own vision and guidance.
You'll direct legendary composer David Orr to produce a musical track for SCU under your own vision and guidance.
In-game name-plated statue dedicated to your character featuring his/her biography.
We'll create an in-game statue dedicated to your hero, prominently displaying their features and their name. When examined, players will be able to read a biography about your hero. You can write this biography yourself, or Upheaval Arts will come up with one for you.
Direct Upheaval Arts in the design of a boss fight for StarCraft Universe through your vision.
We've all dreamed of what it would be like to design a boss fight for a video game. Now you can! You'll work with Lead Developer Ryan Winzen to direct Upheaval Arts in the creation of a boss fight under your own vision and guidance. Please note Upheaval does have the final say on what is created to ensure the quality and consistency of the game.
Attend BlizzCon 2013 with Upheaval Arts, all expenses paid.
We'll fly you to Anaheim, CA for the Blizzard Convention time of your life! We'll put you up in a hotel with members of Upheaval and go to the convention center together. We'll even go bug members of the Blizzard staff on the floor and harass them about imbalance and game bugs.
Direct Upheaval in the creation a main character which guides the StarCraft Universe storyline.
Have you ever wanted your own imagined character to influence the over-arching story of a game? Now's your chance! Your generous donation will land you the opportunity to develop a main character for StarCraft Universe. You'll work with us to create a character sheet developing the personality, traits, visual design, and combat AI of your character! We'll then figure out how your character fits into our imagined storyline! (This donor will be required to sign an NDA with Upheaval Arts to protect the integrity of the project's storyline.)
An entire start-up zone made in your image, dedicated to you or your character.
We'll make an entire zone dedicated to you, your name, and your vision on how it should be built. This zone will feature character creation, character class mentors, a trading and vendor area, an arena for dueling, your own name and banners, a name-plated statue dedicated to your character featuring his/her biography, and a garage where players can test drive most of the vehicles in StarCraft Universe! All players on battle.net will have access to this zone, making you a pretty popular person!
What is StarCraft II?
What's the difference between a standalone game and a mod?
Most mods are like mini-games, but like StarCraft Universe, some are complete re-workings of the StarCraft II engine which make the game play completely differently than it was originally designed. These custom games are created using the map editing program included with StarCraft II and are published online through Battle.net.
Will I need to own StarCraft II or its expansions to play this?
NOPE! The StarCraft II: Starter Edition, which is FREE, is all you will need to play StarCraft Universe!
Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Because we've already completed most of the core systems and functionality behind SCU, and we're permitted to use the endless assets provided by Blizzard Entertainment's StarCraft II Editor, the risk factor is very low in our development.
Some risks do include converting the RTS engine to run properly within a third-person RPG engine. Some players have experienced synchronization issues with the current camera systems and slight delay with input commands. This is an issue both Blizzard and Upheaval are aware of and working to remedy.
The biggest challenge we face is the time required to implement custom assets and script in content for players to explore, but with your monetary assistance we'll be able to eliminate many of the challenges of our lives, and focus on our work.
If delays in production do arise, backers will be notified of the issues via provided e-mail.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.