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Wednesday, February 20, 2002

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Warcraft III Changes
6:00 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

The recent round of beta testing for Blizzard's real-time strategy game Warcraft III seems to be paying off in the form of substantial gameplay changes, according to the folks at CG Online. In "The Transformation of the Horde," they outline several major changes that may be of interest to gamers eagerly anticipating this title.

Arguably the most substantial change is the removal of the much discussed Mana Stones. Originally used as a currency of sorts for the creation of Heroes, Mana Stones have been done away with altogether. Players need now amass only gold to recruit Heroes, and will receive a free one at the start of a game.

The Heroes themselves have also gone through some changes. Each one will now have the potential to cast some sort of "Ultimate Spell," which they can cast once per day (in game time) upon reaching Level 5. The inventory capacity of Heroes has also been expanded from four to six slots, allowing them a greater capacity for carrying useful items.

Other changes include the concept of Upkeep, which regulates the amount of food and gold available to players based on how much they have of each, and the ability for races to gain special abilities by allying with other races:

Upkeep comes in three flavors, None, Low, and High. In each mode, the AI takes a look at how much food you have, and bases the speed at which your little workers can mine gold on that amount. In other words, the more units you have, the more food you'll need, and the more food you produce, the less gold will be available. You begin at No Upkeep (where the gold flows freely), and as you expand your forces the Upkeep quotient rises. This makes it a difficult decision whether or not to try and amass that huge indestructible last-minute army — a good idea that will provide an organic unit cap.
For more information on these and other changes, be sure to check out the entire feature at CG Online.

CG Online: The Transformation of the Horde
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