Warcraft 2 - Tides of Darkness

 

War 2 History

The epic 2v2 battle vs the Server Admin [~Sept 2008] (Dave's comments are in colour at the bottom of each picture)


To add later: the 4 vs 1 "FFA" game story

War2.RU Pictures

 The best ever? Probably not =P

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2v3: Darq_Amin and Darq_Ubernoob vs 3 others:

So much respect =P

 









 

 

 Forced to invade black and yellow at the same time as they were triple teaming Dave.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



















If you played warcraft 2 and actually feel like seeing more of our recent screenshots, get the awesome piclens plugin for firefox (easier to view images) and go here, click play on image:

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/5579

http://www.flickr.com/photos/36207133@N00/sets/72157603217865718/


This page shows how custom maps were made, one of our favourites, Canals. An incredible amount of planning and work went into those Kali puds, and that's probably why they are so fun.


War2 history

Warcraft II was my first great multiplayer game. However, I played it rather low scale early on. After finishing the campaigns, I was ready to embark on my first foray into the multiplayer world: A War2 modem to modem game.

I still remember the first time James and I got it working, without knowing what we were doing really. Basically, when you clicked dial, the 14.4 modem would dial, and the receiving person’s phone would ring normally, but if you picked it up you would hear a weird screeching sound and the game would not be created. So, both James and I often had to yell, “don’t pick up the phone” to our moms before the phone rang 5 seconds later, followed by the modems screeching away on both computers. Of course mothers will be mothers, and they were usually perplexed about how we knew the phone was going to ring and picked it up anyway. We were too young (Grade 6) to be waiting for girls to call, so they were truly perplexed about our apparent phone pick-up obsession. Sometimes the first dial would fail, so we had some phone signals to signal when it was us calling each other instead of the modem dialing [dial and let it ring 3 times, hang-up, and dial again, if you wanted to talk on the phone].

 

James and I played many countless games against the computer. We did play against each other, but not that much, except for a few ‘accidental’ battles. Most of our games were on garden of war, though we played on a lot of maps. We enabled some cheats, but they were cheats that helped both the computer and us. Basically the make it so cheat (which sped up building construction for everyone) and the Every little thing she does cheat (which researched all the spells for everyone, and gave infinite magic mana to everyone, basically meaning you could cast as many spells as you wanted without having to wait for the guy to recharge). These cheats actually helped the computer equally or more than they helped us, as you’ll see.

 

Our greatest and craziest game was in the usual garden of war map we played. James and I walled in, and had a base from 4 o clock to 6 o clock on the map. At 6 o clock, there was some trees, with an enemy army on the other side, and many mages and death knights casting multiple spells against the outer edge of our base. James and I decided to fortify the six o clock area, and we built an army of ogres and knights ( I was usually orcs, James was usually humans). James came up with the seemingly brilliant idea to chop our way to them instead of breaking down our wall in on the other side.

After we felt confident and ready, we chopped through the trees, expecting an easy battle.

 

Instead, right after we opened a hole there, hordes and hordes of computer troops ran into our base. We fought hard, but the computer, with its “Infinite hands” blood lusted everybody, and their paladins would stop every 5 seconds to all simultaneously heal each other, and with the magic cheat, they could do that without running out of mana. They killed off our army, and started destroying james’ base. James rapidly tried to throw up some scattered walls (computers don’t usually attack walls so that would have stopped them) but the computer killed his peasants and continued the onslaught. I brought over all the reserve ogres I had, and threw up runes, and just kept pumping our ogres while james got knights and mages and blizzarded territory, killing both our troops, but it was necessary as they outnumbered us like 10 to 1. We fought hard, and most of james’ base was destroyed, but we managed to stop them at the edge of my base, and fortify down. After getting a force of exploratory ogres and knights together, we started very slowly to explore back into the dark fog of war that covered the ruins of james’ base. We were so wary, even afraid, of what sort of army would be waiting out there, after the huge invasion that happened earlier.

 

Well we cautiously and anxiously went past the treeline, and do you know what we saw? Nothing. There was barely any computer resistance. The computer players had probably used up all their gold mines in financing that attack, and had no troops left to fight us. We then spent an hour just destroying their huge, spanning bases, and enacting a terrible and very enjoyable revenge. That was a crazy game, and I’ll never forget the surprise the computer gave us there when we cut down the last tree, nor the actual sense of fear we had as we left the base into the foggy unknown.

 

James and I played many games War2 games in those days - and enjoyed chatting about them and describing them in great detail at school with other Grade 6'ers.  Warcraft 2 was the popular lunchtime discussion.  As I said, we were usually allied against the computer. One game, while I was trying to toggle the share victory button, I think, I had the diplomacy window open, and at the same time my mother picked up the phone [edit: perhaps I toggled enemy right before disconnecting]. The game disconnected, but James angrily told me later that my troops had started to attack him. So we discovered this loophole when disconnecting that caused your troops to attack. After that, we both had a few ‘accidents,’ one time James actually landed a huge forge of paladins on a small island outpost that had no enemies and then right after that ‘accidentally’ disconnected;) Luckily a death and decay mopped up the paladins, though most of the island was damaged by the spell as well. We usually had more of a cold war situation going during the side of our battles vs the computer. For example, sometimes James would try to sneak invisible mages into my base, so I would try and keep some weak units blocking the way (ie at a chokepoint). Sometimes they would sometimes be polymorphed into animals by some mysterious force. And at the same time, if my death knights were ‘practicing’ casting death coil on a seemingly empty area, was my fault that James had invisible mages waiting there? =P

 

I started playing Warcraft online, so, as with any rookie that plays online and returns to play his friends, when I played James again a little while later, I won like 15 games in a row. However, during these thrashings James picked up some of my strategies, which were going orcs because bloodlust was just so powerful (it basically tripled the damage an ogre could do, and ogre mages could easily cast it on each other, and it would last for a minute or so). But I was also a good rusher, so James picked out a map with a lot of trees between us [expansion map "the web"]. I got the usual ogre/death knight army, only to be surprised by a horde of dragons that flew over the trees I was going to blowup/cut down. I barely managed to hold them off with the few death knights I had until I could train a few rarely used axethrowers, and bloodlust them to hold off the dragons. I then used sappers to blow open a way to James’ base, but James had his own horde of ogres waiting. In the end, I won, but it was a great, hard fought battle.

 

It’s amazing that I still remember some of these games, when I spend the time to dig deep in my memory and remember them. Now I remember another game, where it was like four islands on the corners with a sea/lake in the middle. Sort of like the Baltic map of age of kings, except imagine that the land is “cut” into 4 separate pieces by (wide) rivers. [edit: I'm sure now, this map was diamond.pud from the expansion set puds] In this game, I’m not sure what happened early on, but basically James managed to take over the sea ( I think he had a lot of submarines and battleships.) So basically I was boxed in on my island, while James built an expansion base on one of the islands. Luckily, before I lost the seas, I managed to hide a few transports here and there on the ocean. James bombarded my coast, but I sent 2 transports with 12 ogres over to James base, landed, and quickly got the trannies away. Now 12 units may not seem like a lot, but Warcraft battles usually had a maximum of 60-80 units, and most of James military was in the naval form. The landed orgres, bloodlusted each other, and were barely able to kill the islands defence, and the few that remained were eventually killed, but basically crippled the island. James still had another expansion [he had learned from me to expand aggresively] that had to be dealt with. I sent 3 transports full of ogres, and then lost some of the transports to James’ armada. The whole ‘barely avoiding James’ ships with a boatload of ogres’ in that game made it a very fun, though stressful, game. I had one particular transport that was heavily wounded that would just always barely evade his ships.

 

I managed to kill that other base, but I think James had yet another base, and I sent some dragons over to kill it, basically leaving him with only a navy that I managed to mop up eventually. But that was like a 3 hour+ game that I played modem to modem vs James’ 75 pentium computer on my old 486-66 computer in my parents room while my mom was taking a nap as it went on much longer than expected. Talk about old school. But from that point on, James and I both knew how fun (online) gaming could be.

 

James made a few awesome scenarios for warcraft that I wish were still around, but are probably lost forever [perhaps they are on a floppy disk, lost somewhere in James’ house, along with the war2 manual he borrowed from me ages ago] One had a long, narrow chokepoint defence area where you had to hold off the enemy hordes, and really was a great scenario. Later on he made “real.pud” which tried to make the game more realistic, for example, one or two shots from an archer would kill a melee unit, melee units could take out archers very quickly when they got up to each other, and melee units would kill each other faster. There were some other ones as well that I don’t remember too many details about.

 

 

Gradually, I began to play Warcraft online more and more often. I was crushed at the start like any newbie, but began to pick up strategies. I played with the slightly more powerful orcs, learning the various grunt rushes, the bloodlust rush, sapper tactics, etc. Orcs were considered better than humans by most players because of bloodlust, which is a simple spell ogre magi could cast on each other that would triple the damage they did to units and buildings, and at least double the damage that other organic non-ogre units did. The death knight spell haste was also useful at times, speeding up slow units like catapults up to the speed of ogres. Blood and haste had a particularly strong effect on dragons, when used in combo, a group of 9 dragons could actually be a really dangerous threat.

 

Humans did have their advantages, but they required expert players with expert strategies to beat the best Orc players. Humans had to make use of their best unit, the mage, with mage bombs using the spell blizzard, and invisibility. Invisibility was also quite useful on sea maps for hiding transports, and the spell slow had to be used to manually slow down the blood lusted orcish hordes. Polymorph was useful if you needed to eliminate one organic unit right away for some reason (turned them into a sheep), but generally it was better to use the mage’s mana for casting blizzard and killing/injuring a lot of units.

 

Powered by my orcish strategies, I began to increase in skill. I joined a clan, DOR, which I think stood for Dragons of Rage. So my name became DORxUnccPapa [the kids at my mom’s daycare liked to call me UnccPapa for some odd reason…] I joined Case’s ladder, and began playing ladder games on the zone (Kali was the first major playing area, but the Zone room “The Craft of War” was growing rapidly}.

 

 

I began to become an expert on some maps. One of them was the spiral, a water map with 5 pieces of land. I was also decent on GOW, but even though I was a good rusher, I didn’t enjoy the predominately rushing dominated games on GOW. I was much better on the water maps of High Seas Combat and Fierce Ocean Combat. There would still be “rushes” but usually it would be the race to bloodlust before attacking. Water Map games also tend to last longer than land map games.

There was one player that I met who I should mention because I always lost to him, and he was one of the best Warcraft players ever. And I can’t even remember his name, but I remember him. He used humans most of the time, even though as mentioned they were weaker than orcs. He was always just one step ahead. A lot of games I was a minute, 30 seconds, even 10 seconds away from attacking him with a large force of bloodlusted orgres, when he would hit me with mages or prevent me from getting that force off my island (on the water maps). Oh, and when he went orcs, there was no chance for me. I managed to beat him once, on the spiral map (my best map), after a hard fought 3 hour battle. Anyway, I played a lot of 1v1 with this guy, then we started playing 2v2 a lot together, and were unstoppable. He even joined my clan I think. It’s too bad I lost contact with him, I’m sure he would be a great Age of Kings player as well [edit: or any other RTS], and he was a good guy.

 

Gradually, I began to tire of warcraft. It was a great game, but real life is inevitably more enjoyable than games [despite the fact that my website is mostly about old games…] and I got bored of it. I remember I was playing a lot of soccer at the time; our team was doing quite well.

Eventually, I slipped out of the War2 ladder, and my name was deleted for inactivity. But the war2 community was also dieing at the time, and was over except for the new Russian server that we play on occasionally. 

 

War2 Russian server (2007 - ~2011) 

 

Warcraft is such a fast game compared to newer RTS games that War2 games usually last only about 30 minutes now. It’s funny how you lose a lot of the skill you had in a game, usually the quick buildup and rushing strats. However, I played quite a few ocean games so I am very good with ships, I often take out much larger fleets and armies nowadays with proper ship tactics and mage bombs against opponents who have much faster and bigger economies than me, since they have perfectly memorized and executed a few build orders, but have no real combat micromanagement experience. That's a theme that also appears in my Age of Kings experiences.

 

Finally I have to mention Spike Maverick, a guy Dave and I met this year playing War2. He is university student in Ottawa and apparently only has dial up internet, which is why he doesn’t play newer games than War2. This is something we cannot really fathom, a guy in the capital of Canada with dial up, when I have friends in the Queen Charlotte’s with high speed internet. Anyway, Spike is pretty good at using mages. Pretty damn good, actually. When you play him, if he even has one or two you often lose a lot of troops taking them out. And now that I think of it, most Warcraft games now are on very fast computers, set at the fastest speed. That means micromanagement with mages is more difficult. Back in the day the lag and the game speed made the game much slower, which is why you had multi hour games, and Spike Maverick would have been even more effective in that era.