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Thread: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

  1. #1

    Default SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    That other thread about Enumerate made me think: if Blizzard would reboot the Starcraft universe, what are the "things" that MUST be kept? What do you think?

    It might be easier to list what can be removed/replaced/changed rather than what must stay. Here's my list below so far in no particular order. I'm not fully decided on some of these yet.

    -Everything SC2 (you knew this was coming )
    -Of course, everything form the EU
    -Duke and Aldaris (imo it's more about what they represent in the story rather than the character themselves so I think they can be changed)
    -Every Terran organizations other than the confederacy, Dominion/SoK and the UED
    -Fenix (hard to say this but I can't say he's essential.)
    -All Terran units except marine, ghost, Siege tank, Battlecruiser
    -All Protoss units except Zealot, HT, DT, maybe Archon
    -All zerg units except lings, Hydra, Muta
    -Pretty much all buildings except pylons and the concept of creep
    -The entire story of BroodWar except for the arrival of the UED (including Stukov and Dugalle) and also the fact that Kerrigan manages to play everyone somehow. Everything else can go. Duran, the matriarch, Shakuras, the Fall of Aiur, Hybrids (imo this idea is too obvious to be left unexplored though), etc. I'll think more about this since it's drastic...
    -Magic crystals
    -Every planet except Aiur, Char, Tarsonis, Khoral
    -All cerebrates
    -Ion Cannon
    -Most dialogues except a few specific ones (not sure which right now other than that first interaction with the Overmind)





    Edit: hmmmm, in retrospect, it might be easier to write a small timeline of plot points to keep and say everything not included can be changed. I'll work on that later maybe.

  2. #2

    Default Re: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    So you're essentially trying to pear down StarCraft to its absolute core, retaining those aspects that composed StarCraft. It might be easier to make a list of things to keep rather than discard.

    Clearly, the Protoss, Terran, and Zerg are all core components. Within those three categories, the Khala, factional infighting, and the Overmind may be all that is necessary for those respective races. The Xel'Naga myth cycle, and Hybrid potential, may be the only other categories worth pursuing.
    Aaand sold.


    Be it through hallowed grounds or lands of sorrow
    The Forger's wake is bereft and fallow

    Is the residuum worth the cost of destruction and maiming;
    Or is the shaping a culling and exercise in taming?

    The road's goal is the Origin of Being
    But be wary through what thickets it winds.

  3. #3
    Gradius's Avatar SC:L Addict
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    Default Re: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    You've got to keep Carriers and Ultralisks. :P

    I'd be fine with axing magic crystals.

  4. #4

    Default Re: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    Quote Originally Posted by Visions of Khas View Post
    So you're essentially trying to pear down StarCraft to its absolute core, retaining those aspects that composed StarCraft.
    That's exactly it!


    The Xel'Naga myth cycle, and Hybrid potential, may be the only other categories worth pursuing.
    I'm not sure about the cycle but, in my opinion, hybrids are just a logical next step for the story to eventually go. I say this because, fundamentally, the Zerg and the Protoss are conceived in a way to make the audience almost beg for a merger. I found it strange that Mis wanted to avoid the topic completely. If you don't want hybrids, you'd probably have to remove the fact that the Xel'Naga had 2 children with 2 ying yang characteristic. Of course, that would probably remove a lot of Starcraft's appeal.

    You've got to keep Carriers and Ultralisks. :P
    Ah man, that was a tough cut. It's no surprise that SC2 kept these 2. My reasoning was that the fact that they're the top tier units contribute more to their icon status than their shape or behavior. I think I can live with another Protoss giant ship or another giant bug. In that sense, I guess it's a bit unfair that I'd keep the BC. Always was more of a Terran player so I'm biased I guess it can go too...

  5. #5

    Default Re: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    No Aldaris or Fenix? I wonder how the Protoss campaign would start... Aldaris is too important to be gotten rid of since he contrasts against Tassadar not only just in character but in how the plot develops, much in the way how Mengsk contrasts against Raynor.

    If we can get rid of Aldy, we might as well nix ol Zeratul's character, too. You still need to have the DT as plot device but otherwise you can fold Zerry's character stuff into Tassadars character because he supposedly commands both Templar and Dark Templar powers. Tassadar wouldn't have to die at the end of Sc1 neither if this was so. However, I suspect that Tassadar had to die at the end of Sc1 because otherwise he would be too powerful to keep around and to write stories around...

    If we're going to ditch some othercharacters, I would say we could ditch Raynor too since he doesn't really contribute anything of significance in terms of progressing the plot. He's good for providing the normal guys perspective but that's really it.

    I agree on nixing the cycle stuff because that was all in the EU (which is nixed as well) but keeping the Hybrid stuff. At the least, the idea of hybrid is a logical progression of the Overmind trying to assimilate Protoss. Doing away with the majority of BW, especially The Stand, I agree with, too.
    Yes, that's right! That is indeed ME on the right.


    _______________________________________________

  6. #6

    Default Re: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    The thing about Aldaris and Duke is that they represent the old archaic party/systems but I feel like their characters are not necessary. In my opinion, what's necessary is the clash of new ideas/perceptions (Tassadar and the Mengsk) with the old(Conclave and Confederacy). Imagine the universe was rebooted into a movie. Would you be ok with skipping all interactions between Aldaris and Tassadar and replacing them with allusions to the conclave's will? To be fair, I'm not sure if this would be possible. Maybe the conclave does need a face and if it does, then it might as well be Aldaris. I'm not sure, I'll think about it. Making allusions to the Confederacy without Duke though, that's sounds a lot more feasible.

    For Zeratul, I kinda agree that he could be chopped but he's also a fan favorite (something that I think Aldaris is lacking). I'm not sure. There needs to be interactions with some dark templars that's for sure. If there are interactions with dark templars and you need to give them a face, then you might as well show Zeratul I think.

    Raynor I wouldn't chop. Apart from being a fan favorite and the closest thing to the series main hero, he's also important to make you care about the death and rebirth of Kerrigan. That's not to say that it can't be done without Raynor but he's just too iconic to the serie. I'll admit that it's all very subjective and I have a pretty loose methodology to what I'm saying

    The characters that I feel must absolutely stay are:
    -Kerrigan
    -Mengsk
    -Raynor
    -Overmind
    -Tassadar

    The characters that I feel could be removed if you really need more liberty/time are:
    -Aldaris
    -Zeratul
    -Duke (can possibly fall in last category too, not sure yet)
    -Stukov
    -Dugalle

    The characters that I think can be removed freely without too much impacts are:
    -All cerebrates
    -Fenix
    -Everyone else from BW not previously mentioned

  7. #7

    Default Re: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    Quote Originally Posted by sandwich_bird View Post
    In my opinion, what's necessary is the clash of new ideas/perceptions (Tassadar and the Mengsk) with the old(Conclave and Confederacy). Imagine the universe was rebooted into a movie. Would you be ok with skipping all interactions between Aldaris and Tassadar and replacing them with allusions to the conclave's will? To be fair, I'm not sure if this would be possible. Maybe the conclave does need a face and if it does, then it might as well be Aldaris. I'm not sure, I'll think about it. Making allusions to the Confederacy without Duke though, that's sounds a lot more feasible.
    That new and old clash you mentioned is only palpable with the Protoss because of Aldaris' presence. It's actually non-existent with Mengsk and the Confederacy because Duke is not really supposed to be representative of the Confederacy that Mengsk is fighting and the Confederacy being a non-entity throughout the campaign. Duke's ineptitude is probably meant to show an aspect of the Confederacy as being inept as well, but there isn't really anything to the "clash of new and old" when it comes to Mengsk and Confederacy. If there is a "clash" that is apparent in the Terran campaign, it's the one involving pragmatism (Mengsk) vs idealism (Raynor).

    Quote Originally Posted by sandwich_bird View Post
    For Zeratul, I kinda agree that he could be chopped but he's also a fan favorite (something that I think Aldaris is lacking). I'm not sure. There needs to be interactions with some dark templars that's for sure. If there are interactions with dark templars and you need to give them a face, then you might as well show Zeratul I think.
    Oh, I thought we were trying to exclude favouritism/personal preference of characters in making these choices. Anyways, the DTs are necessary as a concept since they are part of the Protoss backstory and inform the current situation, but Zeratul as a character isn't really necessarily since that can be easily folded into Tassadar's character. Zeratul is only noteworthy in the plot for providing the Overmind inadvertent and damaging knowledge that was used against the Protoss and for giving a "reason you suck" speech to Aldy. I could easily see those two things being shifted onto Tassadar. It'd feed into the new vs old clash and give even more meat on that bone because it focuses on the good and bad aspects of the "new" and give more credence behind the opposition of the "new" held by the "old"/Aldaris.

    Quote Originally Posted by sandwich_bird View Post
    Raynor I wouldn't chop. Apart from being a fan favorite and the closest thing to the series main hero, he's also important to make you care about the death and rebirth of Kerrigan. That's not to say that it can't be done without Raynor but he's just too iconic to the serie. I'll admit that it's all very subjective and I have a pretty loose methodology to what I'm saying
    Raynor's role as the hero/icon for the series is only important on a Doylist level. He's really only there to act as an everyman surrogate for the audience member (despite you being the non-entity, player character magistrate). I think he's more important in terms of fleshing out/giving another perspective the Terrans with his ideals and how they contrast/clash with Mengsk.

    Kerrigan's death and rebirth are affecting all on its own without having to consider Raynor in the mix. The tragedy of her dying and not dying/becoming something worse than just dying is interesting in that she's partly responsible for how she ended up the way she eventually did. Kinda makes me wonder whether Raynor's role as the "good guy" couldn't have just been melded into Kerrigan instead, but then we'd be edging too close into Wc3 Arthas territory if we did, so... eh.
    Yes, that's right! That is indeed ME on the right.


    _______________________________________________

  8. #8

    Default Re: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    Quote Originally Posted by Turalyon View Post
    That new and old clash you mentioned is only palpable with the Protoss because of Aldaris' presence. It's actually non-existent with Mengsk and the Confederacy because Duke is not really supposed to be representative of the Confederacy that Mengsk is fighting and the Confederacy being a non-entity throughout the campaign. Duke's ineptitude is probably meant to show an aspect of the Confederacy as being inept as well, but there isn't really anything to the "clash of new and old" when it comes to Mengsk and Confederacy. If there is a "clash" that is apparent in the Terran campaign, it's the one involving pragmatism (Mengsk) vs idealism (Raynor).
    I always saw Duke as representing the negligence of the Confederacy. Presumably, he isn't so much inept but working for the benefit of the elite. That is basically the confederacy in a nutshell. It contrasts with Mengsk aiding the people. It's perhaps not as evident or clear as Tassadar vs Aldaris and Raynor vs Mengsk but it's there a little bit. Though, without any specific reference to the elites I can see why you'd call it absent. The only real display of it is that we see Duke take the time to imprison Raynor but completely ignore the zerg. Or, he is protecting assets and ignoring the suffering of the people.

    Side note: Thinking back on it, it's kinda odd that Duke shows up out of nowhere right after the infested CC goes down. Was he not monitoring this whole time? It would have been better if as soon Raynor starts firing, Duke starts talking and tell Raynor to stop. Then, Raynor would argue that it's necessary and continue to fire which would then make Duke sends in the "police".

    Oh, I thought we were trying to exclude favouritism/personal preference of characters in making these choices. Anyways, the DTs are necessary as a concept since they are part of the Protoss backstory and inform the current situation, but Zeratul as a character isn't really necessarily since that can be easily folded into Tassadar's character. Zeratul is only noteworthy in the plot for providing the Overmind inadvertent and damaging knowledge that was used against the Protoss and for giving a "reason you suck" speech to Aldy. I could easily see those two things being shifted onto Tassadar. It'd feed into the new vs old clash and give even more meat on that bone because it focuses on the good and bad aspects of the "new" and give more credence behind the opposition of the "new" held by the "old"/Aldaris.
    Yeah I can see it. That would work.

    Raynor's role as the hero/icon for the series is only important on a Doylist level. He's really only there to act as an everyman surrogate for the audience member (despite you being the non-entity, player character magistrate). I think he's more important in terms of fleshing out/giving another perspective the Terrans with his ideals and how they contrast/clash with Mengsk.
    Fair, he is the future face of the resistance after all.

    Kerrigan's death and rebirth are affecting all on its own without having to consider Raynor in the mix. The tragedy of her dying and not dying/becoming something worse than just dying is interesting in that she's partly responsible for how she ended up the way she eventually did. Kinda makes me wonder whether Raynor's role as the "good guy" couldn't have just been melded into Kerrigan instead, but then we'd be edging too close into Wc3 Arthas territory if we did, so... eh.
    I think it's hard for an audience to feel connected to the protagonist when a complete change in character is not done through a logical emotional progression. By that I mean, if your former hero is gonna turn on his old pals, then you want the audience to also want to turn on the old pals if they were the hero. Otherwise, it creates a cognitive dissonance in your audience because the main character often becomes the surrogate. The audience understand the implication of infestation or curse, but, since they were projecting themselves on the hero AND they're not infested/cursed themselves, they have no desire of doing evil(well, in most cases anyways ). All that to say that by having Raynor in there and not just Kerrigan as the "good guy", you avoid this problem and it makes for a better experience in my opinion. Of course, if a director could make the audience truly feel what it's like to become infested, then maybe that could work. It would be very very hard to convincingly do though. I think they kinda tried with Arthas. Can't say it was super effective for me but I recognize the effort.

  9. #9

    Default Re: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    No one touches mah boy Aldaris. He's amazing as a character, representing a guy who really should be a good guy, but isn't acting like it. His story arc is powerful and emotional for various reasons. Even for the people who hate him, they really like to hate him. After SC2 came out, many more people began to appreciate his depth as a character, in comparison to the breadsticks we got there.

    And I'll step up for Duke, too. Duke is a hard, unsympathizing egoist, and his interaction with Tassadar was fantastic, showing that he can keep his cool even when someone's blowing up in his face. I like what he represents as a redneck, because his existence speaks volumes about the nature of the human population in the K Sector. Think about it for a second. There are actually very few characters in Starcraft, compared to the populations they represent. Aldaris represents Judicator and is the only Judicator character. Raynor is the only human civilian we meet in the game. Zer and Ras are the only DTs, and Tass and Fenix the only Templar. Starcraft concerns billions of people, so each character involved is automatically a pillar of representation.

    Don't you go all foolin' about with the characters. Each character in SC was carefully shaped to represent specific things in the story. Removing these characters risks making things shallow like that pile SC2. Seriously, SC1 had great characters, and Starcraft got where it was because of them. As a writer, I have to say that y'all are freaking me out with the whole idea of chopping out characters. In my mind, the only real characters we can get rid of are DuGalle and Stukov, not so much because they were bad characters, but because the idea of the UED interfering with the K Sector is worth questioning.

    I'm good with adjusting the plot, but don't go removing characters unless you can prove to me you can replace them with characters equally deep, representative, and gritty. Let's talk about plot instead. In particular, Raynor and Fenix working for Kerrigan needs to be questioned. It made very little sense for them to want to help the Zerg hurt humanity, and no suitable explanation was ever given.
    "Seeing Fenix once more perplexes me. I feel sadness, when I should feel joy."
    - Artanis.

  10. #10

    Default Re: SC Reboot: what can be removed? What's essential?

    Quote Originally Posted by sandwich_bird View Post
    I always saw Duke as representing the negligence of the Confederacy. Presumably, he isn't so much inept but working for the benefit of the elite. That is basically the confederacy in a nutshell. It contrasts with Mengsk aiding the people. It's perhaps not as evident or clear as Tassadar vs Aldaris and Raynor vs Mengsk but it's there a little bit. Though, without any specific reference to the elites I can see why you'd call it absent. The only real display of it is that we see Duke take the time to imprison Raynor but completely ignore the zerg. Or, he is protecting assets and ignoring the suffering of the people.
    I'm not sure whether the clash between the ideals of Mengsk and the Confederacy, in isolation, is a meaningful or significant part of Sc1 because it's so one-sided in how it's presented. The representation of the Confederacy, through Duke, seems purposefully anemic in order to make Mengsk seem much more favourable. I think this is where the true value of Raynor and Kerrigan's characters are because they far more effectively counter-balance out the protagonist centred morality of Mengsk.

    Makes you wonder, given how poor the Confederacy are represented, whether it was the "correct" thing to do. On one hand, despite them being a superficial opponent, it drove the plot/momentum forward by giving a common enemy to work against and was a lens to focus on the real meat: the development of the Mengsk and Raynor characters (it's quite telling the Confeds are not the real reason behind why the Terran campaign works given the final mission is about Mengsk and Raynor). On the other hand, that superficiality makes the Confeds feel perfunctory and not worthy of the little time we do spend on them. Makes one potentially wonder whether they could've excluded them altogether. But if we did remove them, there would be no basis for the dynamic that gets setup between Mengsk and Raynor.

    The Confederacy are somewhat necessary, if only in a mechanical way, for the plot to develop as it did. In that way, Duke is also important to give the illusion that the Confeds are more than just the "designated antagonist for the plot" that they really are.

    Quote Originally Posted by sandwich_bird View Post
    I think it's hard for an audience to feel connected to the protagonist when a complete change in character is not done through a logical emotional progression. By that I mean, if your former hero is gonna turn on his old pals, then you want the audience to also want to turn on the old pals if they were the hero. Otherwise, it creates a cognitive dissonance in your audience because the main character often becomes the surrogate. The audience understand the implication of infestation or curse, but, since they were projecting themselves on the hero AND they're not infested/cursed themselves, they have no desire of doing evil(well, in most cases anyways ). All that to say that by having Raynor in there and not just Kerrigan as the "good guy", you avoid this problem and it makes for a better experience in my opinion. Of course, if a director could make the audience truly feel what it's like to become infested, then maybe that could work. It would be very very hard to convincingly do though. I think they kinda tried with Arthas. Can't say it was super effective for me but I recognize the effort.
    I agree with this... in parts. I don't fully agree that cognitive dissonance and having characters be a surrogate for the audience member necessarily means that further character progression has to go along with the audience members expectations because, at the end of the day, the character is not really you/ they exist entirely separate to the audience member on a Watsonian level.

    Arthas is a "better" representation of this change from good to evil than Kerrigan, because the curse isn't the instigating thing that "turns him". It's himself. It's his own selfish drive to do what he thinks is right (the stinger being that he was correct on a pragmatic level) is what leads to his downfall. His point of no return was when he decided to kill the civilians at Stratholme because they were already infected with the Undead plague. He then finds Mal'Ganis, blames him for everything (and perhaps for what he was forced to do in killing civilans/burning Stratholme) and is consumed by vengeance making him vulnerable to Frostmournes/the Lick Kings wiles. He epitomises the phrase "the road to evil is paved with good intentions".

    In contrast, Kerrigan's human characterisation in Rebel Yell is quite a bit underserved and doesn't set her up in an overt way as it was with Arthas (which is a bad thing). But on some level, she does decide to choose that evil as well even though the infestation takes precedence and is the more overt reason for her "supposed" change. Her naivete and her reservations against the Psi-Emitter mark her out as being potentially "good", but yet she willingly works as an assassin after being freed from forced servitude as an assassin and acquiesces to the use of the Psi-emitter despite seemingly knowing the potential extent of the damage and "evil" it would wrought. This goes hand-in-hand with the manual description of her "never embracing the darker aspect of her true nature". Her passivity and (as paraphrased from the manual) inability to reconcile with her true dark nature led her to make choices that eventuated into her being abandoned at New Gettysburg. She probably realised that in the moment and it broke her. This would've been her turning point to embrace the dark/being part of the Zerg.

    We don't see it from Kerrigan's perspective though in the game because that moment is used for dramatic purposes and to setup the plot twist of her being infested. Whether that was good or bad in the end is subjective (Misla thinks it was bad at any rate). If the story did have time to flesh out Kerrigan in Rebel Yell (by diminishing Raynor's character, if not removing him), I think it would've been more apparent that even despite the infestation (afterall, the Overmind insists that "the greatness of her spirit has been left to her"), Kerrigan always had the potential to be evil lurking underneath. Her turn to evil is epitomised by Alan Moore's Joker phrase "all it takes is one bad day to reduce the sanest man to lunacy".


    Quote Originally Posted by Nissa View Post
    Let's talk about plot instead. In particular, Raynor and Fenix working for Kerrigan needs to be questioned. It made very little sense for them to want to help the Zerg hurt humanity, and no suitable explanation was ever given.
    I think Bird has decided to nix the majority of BWs story since it doesn't really cover anything fundamental about what makes Sc tick.
    Yes, that's right! That is indeed ME on the right.


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