Today during Blizzard's TwitchCon presentation, James Waugh, Director of Story Development & Lead Writer of Legacy of the Void, and Matt Morris, Legacy of the Void Lead Campaign Designer, revealed the full version of the animated short, StarCraft Reclamation teased at the WCS Season 3 Premier League Finals in Kraków, Poland on September 13. You can watch the reveal here.
The feature acts as a prequel to the beautiful Legacy of the Void opening cinematic that was also released at the WCS Season 3 finals a few weeks ago. Reclamation takes place on the eve of the Protoss' Golden Armada attempt to retake Aiur from the Zerg. In it, Artanis, Tassadar's protege and the Protoss Hierarch, contemplates his decision to invade Aiur and the typical burdens of leadership.
Artanis and Kaldaris
The short opens with Artanis contemplating the future in solitude. When Artanis' old friend, Khaldaris, the one-eyed Protoss Zealot featured in the intro cinematic, comes looking for him, Artanis shares his uncertainty of their current course. Lamenting the diminished number of Protoss that remain, he questions the wisdom of spending more lives to retake a relic of his race's past.
When challenged by his old friend, Kaldaris, the one-eyed Protoss Zealot featured in the intro cinematic, Kaldaris reminds him that there has been light throughout the darkness. He points out that Khas, the Protoss who introduced the Khala to the Protoss - thus ending the Aeon of Strife, forged order from the chaos. Kaldalis believes that retaking Aiur represents a new beginning for a united Protoss. He argues, that remaking Aiur as it could have been - how it could be - is worth dying for. He believes in it so much that he has volunteered to lead the vanguard and one of the first to step back on Aiur's sacred soil. He expects to perish in the attempt and in doing so provide a future for his people. Kaldaris epitomizes the ideal Protoss warrior and he is ultimately successful in convincing Artanis that Aiur is worth fighting for - it is worth dying for.
The short is elegantly animated, well scripted, and exquisitely voiced. It hits most of the major notes that many fans were hoping for, and ties-in wonderfully with the Protoss ethos. It is a compelling intro to all of the themes and Protoss characteristics that Blizzard has been saying they want to include in Legacy of the Void. If the material we have seen so far is any indication of Legacy of the Void's campaign story and dialogue, it could very well be the best of the trilogy - by far. Our only complaints regarding Reclamation revolve around missing references to Fenix, Tassadar, and Adun. Those warriors represent the very best of the Protoss, and all three, directly or indirectly, were major influences on Artanis. It would have been nice to have seen them included in Artanis' recollection. He has lost much and their deeds are as much a reflection of the Protoss as they are of who Artanis has become. However, Reclamation does do all of the right things and it is a wonderful tool to hype Legacy of the Void. As Blizzard continues to explore new ways to effectively continue the StarCraft story, short vignettes like this are, in our opinion, an excellent option - more, please.