It's a different story for the single-player campaign, however. Due to the fact that it's been left out of the beta entirely, there's no telling just how good or bad it's going to be. The combat is certainly at a very good place, but who can know just how epic or anti-climactic the story will be? There have been a few levels demoed at various events, of course, like the level where lava regularly rises to cover the mineral patches. However, there hasn't really been much beyond that. With only three or four levels shown off and a staggering twenty to thirty levels in the final game, this is one section of StarCraft II that nobody has had the luck to experience.
This has given rise to no end of speculation, of course. There have been questions about the possibility of Torrasque's return as the unstoppable ultralisk, whether or not there will be a bigger version of the Thor for the story campaign, and about just how heroes are handled. The responses have been pretty vague and along the lines of "wait and see" or "we haven't finalized the units yet." One way or another, there are going to be some disappointed fans out there. Not that it's that bad a thing when they request "a heated love scene between Raynor and Kerrigan," though.
There is one question that has been asked that received widespread applause when it was finally answered, however. They are "hoping" that the Starcraft II Mac beta will be out in April. Should they stay on schedule, that will mean that those of us without a PC or dual-boot system will be able to enjoy the beta around the time they release their other big update, the map editor. This editor has been described as able to design entire game modes, including those not really supported by traditional StarCraft. You'll be able to include your own assets as part of your map file in addition to having enough tools to entirely remodel how the game runs. According to the various reports and interviews, its capabilities will far exceed that of the Warcraft III editor, which is saying a lot.
That's not all, however. Blizzard appears to be moving towards a system that will allow custom maps to be played on map-specific ladders. That's right, official ladder play for popular maps like DoTA, Tank Wars, and much, much more. It'll finally allow for the players who declare their superiority to finally face the numbers and be placed regularly against their equally-skilled counterparts. Will this give rise to dozens and, perhaps, hundreds of new games running through Battle.Net?
We'll find out soon, as StarCraft II is expected to be released in the first half of this year. Millions of gamers across the world are preparing their computers in anticipation, and it will hopefully be enough to tide us over before the third edition in the trilogy has been released and the true StarCraft II experience has been realized. It'll be a long ride, but it looks to be an entertaining one every Baneling on the way.