Fans of StarCraft may be familiar with the story; a small videogame development company, gaining popularity because of its "Humans vs Orcs" RTS games, decided to create a space RTS which, from conception until beta, looked and played like a trainwreck. This space RTS eventually turned into StarCraft, which remained the world's most famous and most-played RTS for twelve years until StarCraft II came along. Many sites have written articles about the progression and evolution of StarCraft (such as our Evolution of StarCraft article), but it's a rare sight to see a developer for the original StarCraft come forward to discuss the troubles of making such a great game.
Patrick Wyatt, former executive of Blizzard Entertainment, wrote on his blog explaining the problems he and the rest of his team faced when programming StarCraft.
At the time of the StarCraft reboot, according to Johnny Wilson, then Editor in Chief of Computer Gaming World, the largest-distribution gaming magazine of that time, there were over eighty (80!!) RTS games in development. With so many competitors on our heels, including Westwood Studios, the company that originated the modern RTS play-style, we needed to make something that kicked ass.
And we were no longer an underdog; with the successes of Warcraft and Diablo continuing to fill the news we sure wouldn't be getting any slack from players or the gaming press. In the gaming world you're only ever as good as your last game. We needed to go far beyond what we'd done previously, and that required taking risks.
The article is fairly long and gives an insider perspective on the development of the game. To read the full post, click here.
Code of Honor - Tough times on the road to Starcraft