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Thread: Inconsistencies in the Starcraft 1 manual

  1. #11

    Default Re: Inconsistencies in the Starcraft 1 manual

    Quote Originally Posted by ragnarok View Post
    My point here is that even if you add in the protoss knowledge of the xel'naga experiments via the crystals, they didn't exactly know the SPECIFIC DETAILS about those experiments. I'm not even sure of they knew the xel'naga was trying to create the perfect lifeform and all that. You also have to remember that being compatible is only from the xel'naga POV, and therefore what you think should be compatible may not translate into just that as the xel'naga sees it.

    As for why the protoss believe crystal compatible species should be rare and powerful would depend on what they had experienced with the crystals. After all, Aiur has other species too. For all we know, other species got close to the crystals and ended up getting themselves killed or something, which led the protoss to believe that the crystals are powerful and that if you're not physically or psionically strong enough when you come in contact with them, it'll end in disaster.
    The original manual states early in the protoss history that everything they know about the xel'naga is shrouded in myth. The protoss history states that the protoss believed the xel'naga cultivated the development of life, but the zerg history reveals that the xel'naga were actually just trying to create the ultimate lifeform simply to advance their science of protogenetics. In other words, the xel'naga were doing pure research out of vanity.

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    If you wrote Sc seriously, there wouldn't be much of a 3-way conflict at all since the Protoss would realistically roflstomp anyone in their way. The issue with the Protoss is that they're technically too powerful on a fundamental/conceptual level. Short of changing that, they kind of have to be "idiotic" for a protracted three-way war with comparatively inferior opponents to even exist.
    That is the explanation used to justify the prolonged conflict in the (now out of print) miniatures game AT-43. One of the factions is essentially omnipotent compared to the others but constantly loses because their leadership cares more about playing video games and their armies are made of garbage to save on costs.

    A similar explanation is required for a lot of civilizations in popular scifi, like the Necrons, Daleks, Borg, etc.

    The Vietnam War is the closest real world equivalent, which ultimately ended in Vietnam being poisoned with Agent Orange as an unseen side-effect. I can understand the protoss being so arrogant and honor-bound that they refuse to make it easy on themselves, but ultimately coming out on top regardless of the constant string of embarrassments.


    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    It's kinda unclear how much the Confeds really know about the Zerg or whether they really did have nefarious plan for the Zerg since all we really know is their past history of dealing harshly with opposition and then later, Mengsk's biased rhetoric (albeit compelling and seemingly reasonable at the time) to form our opinions on.

    Duke is the only insight into how the Confeds operate and he is surprisingly ignorant, incapable of handling the situation at hand and pliable to Mengks' arguments despite supposedly being a high-ranked military leader and that the Zerg were supposedly intended to be used as a military weapon. You'd think the Confeds would have a tighter reign on things, be more knowledgeable/transparent within their own network and be more prepared for the Zerg if we're to presume they'd been concocting this plan from way before the events of Rebel Yell happen. This is not to excuse their past atrocities or say they're completely innocent mind you, but it seems the Confeds, as represented by Duke, are just blindly poking around in the dark.
    According to the wiki, the initial plans for the zerg were to lure them to populated areas and then exterminate them to make the Confederacy look like heroic saviors. The reason this failed was because way more zerg showed up than the Confederacy was expecting.

    Where were all those zerg before?

    The logistics of the First Contact War are ignored by the canon, even though working out the logistics is vitally important to writing military fiction. There are so many questions surrounding the events prior to the Battle of Chau Sara that are unanswered in canon and any answers based on canon would be nonsensical due to the lore's general unreliability when it comes to pretty much anything.

  2. #12

    Default Re: Inconsistencies in the Starcraft 1 manual

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    That is the explanation used to justify the prolonged conflict in the (now out of print) miniatures game AT-43. One of the factions is essentially omnipotent compared to the others but constantly loses because their leadership cares more about playing video games and their armies are made of garbage to save on costs.

    A similar explanation is required for a lot of civilizations in popular scifi, like the Necrons, Daleks, Borg, etc.

    The Vietnam War is the closest real world equivalent, which ultimately ended in Vietnam being poisoned with Agent Orange as an unseen side-effect. I can understand the protoss being so arrogant and honor-bound that they refuse to make it easy on themselves, but ultimately coming out on top regardless of the constant string of embarrassments.
    Does this mean you're advocating for "bad writing" now? I'm getting confused now.

    You said that you'd prefer and write the Protoss being smarter in the utilisation of their tech because otherwise it makes them "idiotic" and that that'd be bad writing. Then I said that the Protoss have to be kinda "idiotic" (in their utilisation of their OPness) in order for the premise of sustained 3-way to even be possible in the first place and yet you now seemingly say that's ok/"not bad writing"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    According to the wiki, the initial plans for the zerg were to lure them to populated areas and then exterminate them to make the Confederacy look like heroic saviors. The reason this failed was because way more zerg showed up than the Confederacy was expecting.

    Where were all those zerg before?

    The logistics of the First Contact War are ignored by the canon, even though working out the logistics is vitally important to writing military fiction. There are so many questions surrounding the events prior to the Battle of Chau Sara that are unanswered in canon and any answers based on canon would be nonsensical due to the lore's general unreliability when it comes to pretty much anything.
    Eh, I thought we were only looking at the manual. The wiki info is updated with new lore/retcons as things happen from the games, so it saying the Confeds were really luring Zerg on purpose is nothing more than a derivation of Mengsk's appraisal of the situation in Sc1. The thing is, SC1 shows us Mengsk can be wrong. He incorrectly assumes the Confeds created the Zerg, so how can we really be sure that the Confeds were using the Zerg as a means to prop themselves up as Mengsk suggests? Of course Mengsk is going to naturally say/assume that because he's negatively biased against them, but is it really the truth?

    We really don't see the Confed side of things throughout the game (for better or worse). We only know about them from the manual and it seems that by the time SC1 starts, the Confeds are pretty much secure/on-top of things in terms of general Terran matters. They wouldn't really need to concoct the scheme that Mengsk heavily suggests, since no other Terran agency can stop them anyway nor would they care about public relations. On the other hand, if the Confeds really knew about threat the Zerg possessed and knew how to manipulate them a long time before Sc1 starts, how come they weren't more prepared for them or realise the danger of trying to manipulate a hitherto unknown large alien presence? The Confeds have gone to great lengths to secure themselves in the past, so it's kinda silly that they can both be so invested in something as the Zerg and be so unprepared against them/have no contingencies as well.

    I can only rationalise this away as the Confeds actually and truly being largely ignorant of the threat the Zerg posed. The Psi-emitters were probably cursory forays/experiments on trying to manage these alien creatures that they had recently discovered/captured based on initial observations of them seemingly reacting toward psionic individuals. As to the Zerg themselves, the Overmind was probably not expecting anything much (ie: finding viable psionic Terrans straight away) at first by infesting those fringe worlds beyond gathering data/observing the Protoss reaction.
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  3. #13

    Default Re: Inconsistencies in the Starcraft 1 manual

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    The original manual states early in the protoss history that everything they know about the xel'naga is shrouded in myth. The protoss history states that the protoss believed the xel'naga cultivated the development of life, but the zerg history reveals that the xel'naga were actually just trying to create the ultimate lifeform simply to advance their science of protogenetics. In other words, the xel'naga were doing pure research out of vanity.
    Myths are supposed to contain some element of truth to it, even if it's very distorted. It's possible during the uplifting that's what the protoss were led to believe about the xel'naga's role in life development. It's not like they knew the xel'naga would have anything to do with the zerg back then.

  4. #14

    Default Re: Inconsistencies in the Starcraft 1 manual

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    Does this mean you're advocating for "bad writing" now? I'm getting confused now.

    You said that you'd prefer and write the Protoss being smarter in the utilisation of their tech because otherwise it makes them "idiotic" and that that'd be bad writing. Then I said that the Protoss have to be kinda "idiotic" (in their utilisation of their OPness) in order for the premise of sustained 3-way to even be possible in the first place and yet you now seemingly say that's ok/"not bad writing"?
    It is bad writing. Even the manual acknowledges this by stating that Tassadar's faction deliberately prevented any more planet blasting specifically to extend the conflict indefinitely.

    Why are their ground forces not overwhelming superior? I think this ties into the templar's proud warrior-poet culture: they deliberately handicap themselves to make the battles a genuine challenge.

    This doesn't really solve the problem of protoss seemingly dying faster than they should be able to reproduce. There's no logical reason why they cannot download their personalities into clones or robots through the Khala after death, and that plot point alone could spawn numerous stories (as Altered Carbon attests to).

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    Eh, I thought we were only looking at the manual. The wiki info is updated with new lore/retcons as things happen from the games, so it saying the Confeds were really luring Zerg on purpose is nothing more than a derivation of Mengsk's appraisal of the situation in Sc1. The thing is, SC1 shows us Mengsk can be wrong. He incorrectly assumes the Confeds created the Zerg, so how can we really be sure that the Confeds were using the Zerg as a means to prop themselves up as Mengsk suggests? Of course Mengsk is going to naturally say/assume that because he's negatively biased against them, but is it really the truth?

    We really don't see the Confed side of things throughout the game (for better or worse). We only know about them from the manual and it seems that by the time SC1 starts, the Confeds are pretty much secure/on-top of things in terms of general Terran matters. They wouldn't really need to concoct the scheme that Mengsk heavily suggests, since no other Terran agency can stop them anyway nor would they care about public relations. On the other hand, if the Confeds really knew about threat the Zerg possessed and knew how to manipulate them a long time before Sc1 starts, how come they weren't more prepared for them or realise the danger of trying to manipulate a hitherto unknown large alien presence? The Confeds have gone to great lengths to secure themselves in the past, so it's kinda silly that they can both be so invested in something as the Zerg and be so unprepared against them/have no contingencies as well.

    I can only rationalise this away as the Confeds actually and truly being largely ignorant of the threat the Zerg posed. The Psi-emitters were probably cursory forays/experiments on trying to manage these alien creatures that they had recently discovered/captured based on initial observations of them seemingly reacting toward psionic individuals. As to the Zerg themselves, the Overmind was probably not expecting anything much (ie: finding viable psionic Terrans straight away) at first by infesting those fringe worlds beyond gathering data/observing the Protoss reaction.
    Whether something is a retcon depends on whether it contradicts a prior element. If it merely answers an unresolved question, then it is not a retcon.

    The games were very vague on what the Confederacy was really doing, allowing audiences to fill in the blanks. The Liberty's Crusade manual actually contradicts the game script in order to fix minor plot holes, such as explaining explicitly that the zerg are aliens and that the Confederacy did not understand the threat they represented despite telepathically extracting limited information from the zerg about their motives and knowledge of the protoss. (Which implies that Overlords always know this sort of thing, hinting at a zerg culture never explored in the lore.)

    Quote Originally Posted by ragnarok View Post
    Myths are supposed to contain some element of truth to it, even if it's very distorted. It's possible during the uplifting that's what the protoss were led to believe about the xel'naga's role in life development. It's not like they knew the xel'naga would have anything to do with the zerg back then.
    The information possessed by the protoss should not be accurate, and even subject to disagreement.

  5. #15

    Default Re: Inconsistencies in the Starcraft 1 manual

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    It is bad writing. Even the manual acknowledges this by stating that Tassadar's faction deliberately prevented any more planet blasting specifically to extend the conflict indefinitely.
    So you're essentially saying that "good writing" for Starcraft is to not actually have a sustained 3-way war between the races/that the Protoss just roflstomp the others/that the Protoss are not "idiotic" in the utilisation of their technological prowess(?). Wouldn't have much to go on if this were the case...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    Why are their ground forces not overwhelming superior? I think this ties into the templar's proud warrior-poet culture: they deliberately handicap themselves to make the battles a genuine challenge.
    And this somehow doesn't make the Protoss somewhat "idiotic"? Like I said, the Protoss have to be "kinda idiotic" for the premise of Starcraft to hold relevance for any period of time (because otherwise there'd realistically and honestly be no contest - the Protoss would be undisputed victors in any conflict with the other two). This is an example of a narrative conceit - something that all stories have - and is not necessarily or inherently "bad writing".

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    This doesn't really solve the problem of protoss seemingly dying faster than they should be able to reproduce. There's no logical reason why they cannot download their personalities into clones or robots through the Khala after death, and that plot point alone could spawn numerous stories (as Altered Carbon attests to).
    By that accord, there's no logical reason why Protoss should even be on the battlefield at all, let alone dying on the battlefield, either....

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    Whether something is a retcon depends on whether it contradicts a prior element. If it merely answers an unresolved question, then it is not a retcon.
    Incorrect. Retcons are not always necessarily (or at their core have to be) contradictory with prior elements. They merely impose a different interpretation of previous events. Additive retcons, for example, do not contradict previously established facts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    The games were very vague on what the Confederacy was really doing, allowing audiences to fill in the blanks.
    That's what's so great about Sc1. It allows multiple interpretations/can be interpreted in many ways beyond the surface/most obvious/overt one given, allowing the audience member different levels of engagement with it. I think that its "greyness" largely comes from this.
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  6. #16

    Default Re: Inconsistencies in the Starcraft 1 manual

    Quote Originally Posted by Mislagnissa View Post
    The information possessed by the protoss should not be accurate, and even subject to disagreement.
    Assuming that's the case the protoss didn't show it, maybe they just let their differences slide

  7. #17
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    Default Re: Inconsistencies in the Starcraft 1 manual

    thank you for the details

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