15 December 2008

Leaders of the War

A preview of the leadership cards in StarCraft: Brood War

This article is about one of my favorite additions in this Brood War: Leadership cards. Each of the six factions has a unique deck of Leadership cards that can greatly alter and enhance their strategies. Not only does this provide exciting new strategies, but it also makes the factions within the same race play differently!Using Leadership CardsAt the start of each of the three stages, each player chooses one Leadership card (of that stage) and places it facedown. Once all players have chosen their cards, they are turned faceup and resolved in turn order. Some abilities on Leadership cards are resolved immediately, while some provide ongoing effects.


In addition to these affects, each Stage I Leadership card provides different starting units.  Not only does this allow players to choose their starting units, but it is also a vast improvement over referencing the back of faction sheets. You will also note that some Stage I leadership cards provide players the ability to complete their special victory. If a player does not choose this card, then he will be unable to complete his special victory condition during Stage III. This leaves players with the daunting choice between gaining an super powerful ability, or the ability to eventually complete his special victory. Installations


Some leadership cards provide powerful new tokens known as “Installations”. Installation are destroyed in the same manner as bases, but each provide unique abilities. Installations include the protoss Warp gate, Infested Terran bases, a Zerg Cerebrate and the mighty Overmind itself! Since we’re talking about installations, I might as well talk about a new unit ability known as “Collateral Damage.” This ability allows a player to destroy an installation, base, or all worker tokens mining the area if his unit survives the battle. This is extremely powerful and can be found on some Siege Tank, Guardian, and Reaver cards.Heroes


Some Leadership cards provide special Hero units. Heroes are represented by placing a hero token beneath the unit of the appropriate type (for example Jim Raynor in a Vulture). These units are not only more powerful than normal units, but each has an amazing ability!Hero units can turn the tide of battle with their abilities, and are often the target of opponent’s ambushes. This can lead to a risky assault on an opponent’s hero that can lead to a round of applause and high fives. Heroes also play a role in some of the scenarios, which we will be discussing in our next article.  Be sure to tune in next article when we will be discussing planets, modules, the defend order, and a sneak peak at Scenarios.

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