Campaign review: Impending Doom

Impending Doom is a campaign made by DK in 2018. Here’s my review.

Mission 1 - “Unwavering Strength”: Would have been useful to me having Agrovak’s abilities from the beginning. Story has been a bit hard to follow up, it seemed to me that Agrovak was collecting Terrazine just for fun (based on what he says on mission briefings). Offers a bonus cinematic which was OK.
Mission 2 - “Killing Spree”: I liked the format of different side stories alternating in the campaign. This mission was a bit challenging. The map was a bit too big.
Mission 3 - “Discovery”: Luckily I collected everything and brought it to the beacon before the countdown timer even started, because I didn’t have any clue where to put all the Terrazine when playing this map and there was only that beacon. Zerg AI behaves differently each game; at one occasion, it burrowed lots of Hydras in the same spot. Resource limitation makes this map too long, and the extraction was slow too because of having few mineral fields.
Mission 4 - “Into the Fray”: So many 1-hit-KO traps, thus resulting in a really flat learning curve for the player. Requires saving on each step, especially on the final boss. I restarted this mission and saved all units until the final battle. With an immortal Marine and Firebat rescued in the upper left corner. The aesthetic of this temple’s layout is not good, and the interaction of units was very glitchy.
Mission 5 - “Savagery”: Very annoying the potions that disappeared in front of you. Was hard to catch them because the healing trigger was delayed.
Mission 6 - “There Will Be Violence”: Not knowing what comes next in the map made it frustrating. Games are never designed this way. Gateways are destroyed, but there’s no way to know what units to train. Final boss dialogue was just an explanation of what happened during the whole mission, like a recap, so it wasn’t really storytelling and it certainly was unrealistic.
Mission 7 - “Nailed. Dead. Risen.”: It gets worse here, because it was very monotonous to play across the temple’s rooftop. Again, there are important issues with the tileset. Boss fight was more of the same 1-hit-KO stuff.
Cinematic - “Recounting The Past”: The main story of this campaign is interesting. However, there are so many characters introduced, the story gets a bit messy. Considering the length of the campaign, there shouldn’t have been such a level of detail throughout the story. But I see that some campaign creators like to tell the player a lot of stuff.
Mission 8 - “City of Refuge”: Terrain is unbearable, can’t move Dragoons along the outpost tileset connecting to main enemy base. The difference in tech availability is tremendous. AI has lots of preplaced units and also trains lots of them.
Mission 9 - “Return to Lexar”: The question “are you a traitor?” when destroying the Missile Turret in the entrance of the city was so silly. Couldn’t find the secret objective inside the city. Doesn’t make sense to find a friend in an entire city without knowing its location. Lacks information about extra units you can buy at the store when going outside, which by the way, appears out from nothing. Too many Zerg to kill, at this last moment there’s a broken trigger that causes a defeat because of some dying unit in the city. Couldn’t finish the mission because of that, so I moved to the next one.
Mission 10 - “Live or Die”: Harvesting 10k gas with one geyser at a time, for real, incredibly slow and boring. I skipped the previous mission, so I only built the first base and skipped this mission too.
Mission 11 - “Death Approaches”: Mineral fields in the bottom right corner are so poorly distributed that I really doubted these worth the expansion. Annoying EMP, a huge fortress to explore without a single clue where to go. The same tech limitations. Power Generators outside the fortress are barely protected, which doesn’t make sense. Skipped this mission because it was too complicated.
Mission 12 - “Stranger Things Happen”: Instead of making a Zerg base invincible, mapmaker should have located it on a corner that cannot be reached unless by air, e.g. the top right. Also, not controlling Agrovak but requiring him to survive wasn’t a good combo in my opinion.
Mission 13 - “Impending Doom”: Again annoying EMP. Purple AI gets stucked after a while. Siege Tanks on high ground. Only one Observer. An excessive difference between the enemy tech and yours. Decided not to finish this because it was too hard.

Even though this campaign was intended for a non standard gameplay, StarCraft should be played as an RTS. By playing this I got clear that the author of this campaign put a lot of effort making it, but did so trying to reach really high goals on game design, which I consider was the mistake of this campaign. Should have gone for something simpler and would have been a great campaign.
5 stars out of 10.


I liked this review, but I also enjoyed the campaign as well. Imo, It’s nice to see more campaigns made by people who’re enthusiastic about StarCraft, even when it might not be as appealing to everyone else.

Well, I focused more on the negative, but I meant to give note of all the bugs and how it could have been better from my point of view. I prefer old school campaigns (like the official ones). But something very positive I forgot to mention is that DK made everything without modding the campaign, thus making it compatible with almost any version of StarCraft. Modded campaigns are not always bad, but in some cases modding is not necessary, though campaign creators decide to go modding anyways.

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I played this campaign some time ago and it left a good impression on me. I too had to skip some parts due to excessive difficulty or obscure goals, but it still gets a positive rating from me.

As both a player and a designer, I too prefer old school campaigns, and I agree with Savora, modding should always be considered discretionary. However, the problem with modding in the StarCraft community is that such thing is no longer considered an option, but a necessity. Many map makers, who have been conditioned by a debatable school of thought, have fallen to the misconception that the base game (whether it be 1.16 or Remastered) is no longer suitable for producing decent scenarios without resorting to extensive modifications, which is silly to say the least. This is even more aggravating if we consider that in the case of StarCraft, modding has been stretched way beyond its original scope, to the point of hacking the exe, which is a no-no from a legal point of view (StarCraft is free since 2017, but not open-source yet). As a result, many potential new designers don’t even start working on new projects because they are daunted by the expectations: they fear that without a brand new mod, nobody will play their creations, but this isn’t true, as there’s plenty of people who still love the original game and want to be there for the story and the gameplay, and not just for the additional programming.

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