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Thread: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

  1. #1
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    Default Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    For years now, I've noticed a fairly dramatic turn with how Blizzard games are produced in terms of world-building, art, and story (and related gameplay mechanics) as i'm sure you all have too.

    I've also noticed that Starcraft youtube seems to be almost entirely dominated by e-sports, per it's nature as a competitive game. I want to represent the rich lore of SC1 and compare it to SC2. I want to really dive deep into how the campaigns of SC2 work and see where they fail and have fault-lines, versus what they do right. I really care about the future of this franchise, But beyond that, I also just love talking to people about it, and the mutual feeling of catharsis you get when you can determine how a particular element of Starcraft is working.

    The currently inactive YouTube channel is called SideCraft, and I plan to talk about Warcraft, Diablo, and possibly other games/series in the future.

    So my question to you guys is: What would you want to have videos about? Also, what should I do to get started if anyone has experience in this realm. Right now my current topics are:

    • Evolution of marines in starcraft
      Dark Templar vs Tal'Darim
      How Dark Templar were portrayed in SC1 vs SC2
      Artistic influences of SC1
      Zerg portrayals in SC1 vs SC2.
      Importance of cutscenes in SC1
      Voice acting of Protoss in SC1 vs SC2


    I have tons of ideas, and I am in no way limiting myself to the narrow range I've described thus far. What do you guys think?
    Last edited by Undeadprotoss; 10-31-2017 at 12:54 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    I might suggest that you consider Sc1 and BW as being separate from each other because that will allow you to talk about some more comparisons and similarities between all 3 works.

    Are you focusing only on what is presented in the games and manuals? How much of the EU are you going to include into these discussions?

    I'm kinda looking forward to this.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    The youtuber uanime1 is currently releasing a series that examines the nonsensical plot of StarCraft 2. You may want to get in touch with him.

    Other resources I would recommend:


    Otherwise, my main suggestions are:

    The cinematics were shoehorned
    Something to note about the cinematics in SC1 is that they were made without discussing with the writers, so the plot of the game was tweaked to account for them. The Amerigo cinematic is a particular offender, since the invasion of the Amerigo was redundant due to the Zerg previously taking the Ghost Academy on Tarsonis.

    The Starcraft story changed over development, for the worse
    The story of StarCraft has undergone dramatic changes across the manual, the game, and the sequels. That is something I think could be explored, especially where the format of the game harms the narrative.

    To wit, there is a massive disconnect between the Terran storyline and the Zerg/Protoss war. After the aliens leave the Koprulu sector (which is poorly explained, especially the Protoss retreat considering their obviously superior firepower), there is no reason for the Terrans to remain involved in the overarching narrative. The inclusion of Raynor in Episodes 2 and 3 feels fake and forced when he should really be fighting Mengsk.

    The Zerg campaign in Episode 2 is bland and boring. None of the characters are memorable except the Overmind and Kerry. Kerry's character is largely pointless and disappointing considering she undergoes zero development and contributes nothing to the narrative. The plot is an incoherent, rambling mess that serves nothing more than to set up plot points in future campaigns. All of this does a huge disservice to the Zerg.

    The manual explains, in no uncertain terms, that the Zerg invaded the Koprulu sector to assimilate human psychic potential. The manual states the Zerg would not survive a war against the Protoss' superior technology and psychic powers without a counter. That suggests, to me, that the Zerg would build an army of psychic Zerg at the very least... of course the game forgets this and spirals into nonsense.

    To a large degree this is due to the extremely compressed format of the original game. It's just the premise of a galactic war, not even the cliffnotes. To do a galactic war justice would require a much, much more detailed plot. You could make dozens of games about the invasion of the Koprulu sector and the Zerg/Protoss war. Realistically, the war would span a period of years or decades, dozens or hundreds of worlds, and Zerg would be fighting two fronts against the Terran Dominion and the Protoss Empire. The Terrans and Protoss will never ally after the genocide of Terran worlds by the Protoss, even assuming the Judicator didn't have their heads up their own asses.

    The original game made no sense without reading the manual, playing the cut missions, or a reading supplementary material
    The plot of StarCraft did not make much sense unless you read the manual. Surprisingly, a large number of people did not and thus had no idea why the Terrans were in the Koprulu sector, where the Zerg came from, what Tassadar was doing in Episode I, or why the Judicator disliked the dark templar. In fact, two missions were cut from Episode 1 that gave more context to the Antigan Revolt, which lasted for half a year (and no, the game does not give much in the way of dates). The game is so poorly contextualized that it is easy to believe everything happened over the course of a week or two, and the DC comic tie-in moronically retconned the length of the Antigan Revolt to a few days.

    Brood War is a mess
    The Brood War plot is laughably bad. Not SC2 levels of stupid, but still ridiculous. It relies entirely on a series of deus ex machinas and similar contrivances, as well as forgetting what the writers previously wrote. Worst of all, it introduces new antagonists out of nowhere rather than building off of what existed before. The Umojan Protectorate mentioned in the original manual could have easily replaced the UED. Any random cerebrate could have replaced Duran, because the entire reason the Zerg even left Zerus was so they could assimilate the Protoss!

    The games have no sense of scale
    Dates were not given in the original game, but realistically the galactic war depicted there should last for years or decades. The official timeline has everything happen in a couple of months, maybe a year or two depending on the retcons.

    The Terran worlds are repeatedly destroyed in the course of a couple years, but the Terran military suffers no apparent losses in every subsequent appearance.

    Supplementary materials indicate there are dozens of Terran worlds in the Koprulu sector, hundreds of Protoss worlds on the galactic fringe, and "countless" worlds consumed by the Zerg as they traveled across the galaxy. The games would have you believe that the half-dozen planets depicted (Char, Aiur, Korhal, whatever) are the only planets in the universe.

    Insurrection, at least the plot, is basically Starcraft done right
    While Insurrection was a buggy mess, although some dude remastered it a few months ago, all of the major plot points were identical to those of Starcraft 1. The execution, however, was vastly superior. Insurrection took pains to show why the Confederacy were the bad guys (they were willing to kill innocents to prevent the risk of infestation), it foreshadowed and logically explained a Protoss civil war (the dialogues sounds like something out of Game of Thrones), it foreshadowed and depicted its own Brood War, it showed the dangerous power of Ghosts and justified Zerg interest in them, and it set up an alliance between Terran and Protoss that felt organic and natural.

    Someone wrote a whole book about how to rewrite the series from the ground up
    If you want a guide for how to write a good Starcraft storyline, then I would recommend Starcraft: Enumerate.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    I might suggest that you consider Sc1 and BW as being separate from each other because that will allow you to talk about some more comparisons and similarities between all 3 works.

    Are you focusing only on what is presented in the games and manuals? How much of the EU are you going to include into these discussions?

    I'm kinda looking forward to this.
    My main focus as of now is comparing the stuff that most people would be familiar with from the perspective of the average player, so mainly the games themselves, manuals, and possibly comics.

    With that said though, i definitely would not have the EU off the table. I wouldn't mind reviewing SC1 novels, talking about the implications of the comics, etc. Honestly, it might be a good exercise to show how the Protoss, Zerg, and Terrans have been portrayed over the years.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    Mislaganissa, thank you so much for the info. I just messaged uanime1 on YouTube and hopefully I can talk to him about this as well.

    With regards to the finer plot details of SC1/BW and the cinematics, I think something that's so integral to how Starcraft 1 and a lot of other early blizzard games worked is that they really brought out the atmosphere through unique and substantive art, sound, and other motifs they used. Diablo 2 is a really good example of this, if one takes the plot of D2 separate from the rest of the game, it's fairly straightforward. You're on a hunt for the Mephisto, Diablo, and Baal. You find Tyrael who helps you out, and eventually you win. What really elevates that game is the atmosphere. The rich music and art style, the way gameplay incorporates RPG and combat elements, the conversations you have with the town-folk and the narration by Marius really propel that game into the entire experience and the story being really amazing even if the plot itself isn't overly grand (though it does have some interesting twists with Marius, which imo keeps it short, sweet, and creepy).

    Same goes for the SC1 cinematics in my opinion. They made you attach certain emotions and connations to different enviornments and creatures. You learn to fear the Zerg when a Hydralisk kills Fenix and a pack of Zerg kill Lester and Sarge, not to mention the Battle on the Amerigo cinematic. The art, the story, everything blends together seamlessly to ON TOP of having interesting and compelling characters like Raynor, Zeratul, Aldaris, etc

  6. #6

    Default Re: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    If your going to do stuff like the evolution of marine armor/weaponry, and or zerg forms/purpose I would definitely be interested. Also be willing to pitch in if you wanted some opinions or another voice.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    Intended to edit previous post, but wrong button...

    If your actually going to go through with this, attempting to talk with Xiarobear, Gradius, etc might be a good way to get some diverse opinions, as well as give a somewhat-known voice.
    Last edited by Nolanstar; 10-31-2017 at 07:12 PM.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    I agree with Undeadprotoss that part of what makes Blizz's earlier work memorable is that they relied on it being evocative. If you get the "feels" right, you can write any old nonsense and it'll still be accepted.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    To wit, there is a massive disconnect between the Terran storyline and the Zerg/Protoss war. After the aliens leave the Koprulu sector (which is poorly explained, especially the Protoss retreat considering their obviously superior firepower), there is no reason for the Terrans to remain involved in the overarching narrative. The inclusion of Raynor in Episodes 2 and 3 feels fake and forced when he should really be fighting Mengsk.
    This is more a limitation of how the story is initially setup though. It didn't help that the Terrans were initially billed as being comparatively weak, prone to in-fighting and easily crushed by either of the two alien powers. On a narrative level, the Terran race is really just a convenient plot device. Them being the "determinant" for the Zerg is just a conceit to include humans into the plot. Why? Because human characters act as a relatable touchstone/ a gateway into that universe. They're not really that important in the grand conflict between the two aliens anyway (as Sc1 eventually shows with Kerrigan not actually doing anything to sway things in favour to the Zerg despite being the determinant the Overmind sought), but they just happen to be there and get-in-the-way sometimes. In that regard, the inclusion of Raynor in the later campaigns (whilst arguably "forced/ fake"), is necessary to give the stakes a relatable and Terran perspective because the story is supposed to be about how these three species interact even though the actual narrative has already excluded any importance the Terrans might have had on it already.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    The manual explains, in no uncertain terms, that the Zerg invaded the Koprulu sector to assimilate human psychic potential. The manual states from the Zerg/ Overmind perspective that they would not survive a war against the Protoss' superior technology and psychic powers without a counter.
    Corrected for you. The distinction here is important because your assumption that the Zerg would not survive a war against the Protoss without a counter being an irrefutable fact since it originates from the omniscient manual narrator is false. The manual states that only the Overmind actually thinks this - and as the game story eventually shows us, its opinion is proven wrong.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    The Umojan Protectorate mentioned in the original manual could have easily replaced the UED.
    I think Mengsk would've been a better replacement for the UED role than the Umojan Protectorate. It would've given us a chance to be continuous with what came before and show us how big a real threat that he and the Koprulu Terrans (which were depicted as weaksauce in Sc1) could be with the "right" leadership.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    Dates were not given in the original game, but realistically the galactic war depicted there should last for years or decades.
    It wasn't really a galactic war to begin with since originally, all the K-sector Terran worlds were in the same system. The speed at which Sc1 events occurred was more justifiable in that respect because the scale was actually quite small (but no less epic). It's why the later retcons about Terran populations and planets being on whole different systems make it confusing. It's why it also makes the 4 year gap where no events of consequence happen hard to swallow (but apparently is enough time for someone to forgive a mass-murderer).
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    This is more a limitation of how the story is initially setup though. It didn't help that the Terrans were initially billed as being comparatively weak, prone to in-fighting and easily crushed by either of the two alien powers. On a narrative level, the Terran race is really just a convenient plot device. Them being the "determinant" for the Zerg is just a conceit to include humans into the plot. Why? Because human characters act as a relatable touchstone/ a gateway into that universe. They're not really that important in the grand conflict between the two aliens anyway (as Sc1 eventually shows with Kerrigan not actually doing anything to sway things in favour to the Zerg despite being the determinant the Overmind sought), but they just happen to be there and get-in-the-way sometimes. In that regard, the inclusion of Raynor in the later campaigns (whilst arguably "forced/ fake"), is necessary to give the stakes a relatable and Terran perspective because the story is supposed to be about how these three species interact even though the actual narrative has already excluded any importance the Terrans might have had on it already.
    You can analyze it all you want, but the story is poorly put together. It falls apart if you try to analyze it on its own merits: if the Zerg were just looking for Aiur, why did they invade the Koprulu sector? How could they know about the Protoss but not that they lived in the galactic fringe? How come it took them millions of years to find Protoss space when the Zerg clearly have enough numbers to send a probe to every one of the ~400 billion stars in the galaxy?

    Because of the last-minute retcons to the game script, the inclusion of Terrans is invalidated and pointless. This is why I prefer Enumerate's revision, which both makes Terrans actually relevant to the Zerg war effort and keeps them involved in the war against the Zerg after the initial invasion.

    But then, what would you expect when Metzen admitted at a Blizzcon that he forgot what he wrote and some random guy on the internet keeps 150 pages of notes?

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    Corrected for you. The distinction here is important because your assumption that the Zerg would not survive a war against the Protoss without a counter being an irrefutable fact since it originates from the omniscient manual narrator is false. The manual states that only the Overmind actually thinks this - and as the game story eventually shows us, its opinion is proven wrong.
    "Proven wrong" because the game script retconned from the manual and because the game mechanics may differ from the fluff. IIRC, Metzen said that game mechanics trump fluff or something.

    In the backstory, the First Age Protoss easily killed droves of xel'naga before the latter escaped. The Zerg sacrificed billions of their own to crack open the xel'naga world ships. Even though the Second Age Protoss lost a lot of their knowledge and tech, what they rediscovered was enough to let them build a fleet of planet killers. The Zerg clearly have no defense against this. The only reason the Protoss lost the Koprulu sector was because Tassadar refused to commit genocide, and the only reason the fleet was recalled was due to embarrassment. It makes no sense for the Zerg to defeat the Protoss on Aiur so easily unless they were jamming the Psi Matrix the Protoss used to coordinate their fleet of planet killers, which is suggested by the cinematic showing Fenix's psi blade shutting off.

    Again, Enumerate addresses this by explaining that the Zerg used Terran psionics and stolen khaydarin crystals to wage electronic warfare against the Psi Matrix to keep the Protoss from simply blasting them to smithereens. The Zerg go so far as to create Zerg counterparts of most Protoss units as counters, including highly destructive superweapons and so forth.



    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    I think Mengsk would've been a better replacement for the UED role than the Umojan Protectorate. It would've given us a chance to be continuous with what came before and show us how big a real threat that he and the Koprulu Terrans (which were depicted as weaksauce in Sc1) could be with the "right" leadership.
    Enumerate spends a lot of words on explaining this. It's explained that the Kel-Morians and Umojans joined the Dominion as clients. The Umojans got the Confederacy's Zerg research, which they combined with their own ostensibly to assist the Dominion in stopping the Zerg onslaught by developing anti-Zerg weapons. The democratic Umojans disagree with Mengsk's hypocritical authoritarianism, so they secretly fund rebels like Raynor and develop an effective means of controlling feral Zerg during the Brood Wars. When the Umojans later wage open war against the Dominion using enslaved Zerg, it provokes a huge ethics debate among the populace.



    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    It wasn't really a galactic war to begin with since originally, all the K-sector Terran worlds were in the same system. The speed at which Sc1 events occurred was more justifiable in that respect because the scale was actually quite small (but no less epic). It's why the later retcons about Terran populations and planets being on whole different systems make it confusing. It's why it also makes the 4 year gap where no events of consequence happen hard to swallow (but apparently is enough time for someone to forgive a mass-murderer).
    I meant galactic war in the sense that the Zerg and Protoss are the biggest powers in the galaxy and the Protoss Empire covers hundreds of worlds and apparently multiple client races. Not that this ever shows up in the game, which is why the scale of SC1 is way too small.

    It does not make sense that all the K-sector worlds were in the same system. That's one of the retcons that I can accept, since it makes something unrealistic less so.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Making a Starcraft Youtube Channel

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    if the Zerg were just looking for Aiur, why did they invade the Koprulu sector?
    These two things are not mutually exclusive "ends" on their own. Both of these are a means to a singular end - that end being the assimilation of Protoss.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    How could they know about the Protoss but not that they lived in the galactic fringe?
    Well, they knew enough to eventually find them in actuality. Therefore, they must have known where the Protoss were in a general sense when they first started moving out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    How come it took them millions of years to find Protoss space when the Zerg clearly have enough numbers to send a probe to every one of the ~400 billion stars in the galaxy?
    Easy. Stellar drift, that the Zerg are not innumerable or everywhere at once, that travel and communication times are not instantaneous or that the Overmind spent that time, you know, wisely preparing for what could be the greatest conflict it would ever face?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    "Proven wrong" because the game script retconned from the manual and because the game mechanics may differ from the fluff. IIRC, Metzen said that game mechanics trump fluff or something.
    I'm claiming "death of the author" here. From what we have to go on and nothing else, the "determinant" the Overmind wants and the supposed benefit of it is just a subjective fancy to assuage its own fear of the Protoss. Its "importance" is not to be taken as an objective, be-all/end-all fact. That the game goes to subvert this expectation (well, at least it does to me at any rate) by having the determinant not be that crash-hot and actually be the cause of the Overminds own downfall, is somewhat ironically poetic.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    In the backstory, the First Age Protoss easily killed droves of xel'naga before the latter escaped. The Zerg sacrificed billions of their own to crack open the xel'naga world ships. Even though the Second Age Protoss lost a lot of their knowledge and tech, what they rediscovered was enough to let them build a fleet of planet killers. The Zerg clearly have no defense against this. The only reason the Protoss lost the Koprulu sector was because Tassadar refused to commit genocide, and the only reason the fleet was recalled was due to embarrassment. It makes no sense for the Zerg to defeat the Protoss on Aiur so easily unless they were jamming the Psi Matrix the Protoss used to coordinate their fleet of planet killers, which is suggested by the cinematic showing Fenix's psi blade shutting off.
    So? The Overmind was well and truly aware of the might the Protoss possessed. Their infestation of Terran worlds was not only a way to investigate the Terran psionic potential but to test and observe how the Protoss would react. The Overmind was expecting those first forays to fail. Besides "Planet killers" are only useful on stationary targets and the Zerg is a mobile force made up of many individual units acting as one whole unit. The fact that they spent and probably have many years worth of resources that they've accumulated and prepared for before coming to confront the Protoss is another distinct advantage the Zerg have.

    As to the Zerg defeating the Protoss on Aiur so easily with their initial invasion, the Protoss were not expecting a blitzkreig tactic from the Zerg. After that, the Protoss were actually holding their own against the Zerg. They were equally matched on the ground because the Protoss couldn't exactly turn their "Planet Killers" on their own planet. Also, I'd like to think that the Conclave/Aldaris are competent, speaking from some element of truth and not blatantly stupid or lying to themselves when it says they were "convinced that its strategems are winning the war against the Zerg" when they go off on the hunt for Tassadar.

    The Protoss are only actually losing to the Zerg on Aiur when Tassadar is brought back to Aiur and incites insurrection amongst their own ranks. Their forces are spent fighting each other and not the Zerg. This has thematic weight because the Protoss are losing because they become un-unified. In contrast, Tthe Zerg have always been largely unified, which is partly why they make such progress in the war up to that point.

    As to the Psi Matrix theory being the "overt" reason for why the Protoss are losing, it's much like Visions of Khas' theory where he suspects that this was the reason for why the Overmind invasion required this intricate setup to make it manifest on Aiur. For me, I can take it or leave it, though I probably lean slightly more toward leaving it because its kinda plot contrivance-y.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    Enumerate spends a lot of words on explaining this. It's explained that the Kel-Morians and Umojans joined the Dominion as clients. The Umojans got the Confederacy's Zerg research, which they combined with their own ostensibly to assist the Dominion in stopping the Zerg onslaught by developing anti-Zerg weapons. The democratic Umojans disagree with Mengsk's hypocritical authoritarianism, so they secretly fund rebels like Raynor and develop an effective means of controlling feral Zerg during the Brood Wars. When the Umojans later wage open war against the Dominion using enslaved Zerg, it provokes a huge ethics debate among the populace.
    Hold on. Didn't you just complain that the Sc1 story we got requires supplementary material like the manual to understand? Yet here you go on and espouse this particular piece of supplementary material which is fundamental in understanding and establishing the Umojans for the UED role in this revised take on BW. Smells fishy to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    Not that this ever shows up in the game, which is why the scale of SC1 is way too small.

    It does not make sense that all the K-sector worlds were in the same system. That's one of the retcons that I can accept, since it makes something unrealistic less so.
    Be that as it may, the established scale of Sc1 was relatively "small" from the get go. Just because it's inconvenient from what you prefer doesn't make it any less true or "unrealistic".
    Last edited by Turalyon; 11-01-2017 at 10:13 AM.
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