Which game needs no introduction? Which game's known by all? Which game is legendary? ... No, not Monopoly. It's Warcraft. This one is the very first one from the famous series where orcs and humans battle it out over Azeroth.
The game begins with the choice that will change the world. Will you command the orcs or the humans? Depending on this choice, the entire campaign is different. Your troops, buildings, upgrades and spells are of an entirely different order as well. You either build a medieval village or an encampment of adobes, go raid and pillage villages or ride out to prevent this from happening.
There's a wide variety of missions you will receive. Some are to build a camp of a specific force, others are to collect a certain amount of resources or to take out some villages, while yet others set you up with a relatively small amount of troops, no ability to build anything and have to rescue key characters.
Although it all might seem as simple as quickly building up a vast army to clobber anything that moves, the game is actually far more challenging. You need to balance offense and defense out carefully, plan your resource in- and outcome carefully, see which upgrades're needed faster than others, all together with exploring, both for finding new resources in case the ones you have at the moment are exhausted, and to know where the enemy resides. An all-out offensive strategy, for example, will leave your encampment unguarded, meaning it will only take one enemy troop that sneaks past your troops in order to have to retreat in all haste, hoping you still have peasants left, or the ability to make another one, as they're as important as, if not more important than your offensive troops.
Graphics of this game are nice. The mission briefings are extremely well drawn and the ingame action is clean and smoothly drawn. The intro, although some animations in it are a bit choppy, it is quickly looked over ,especially since the rest of its quality is superb to the standards of its time.
Music and sound are terrific for its time as well. Music is of top-notch quality, even to today's standards. Same goes for the speech and sound effects. It might not be surround, but the stereo sound certainly doesn't take down on the atmosphere of the game.
A few downers for Warcraft are obviously known by Blizzard, as they fixed those in Warcraft II, but it feels slightly odd in number I. To move a unit, you always have to select the Move icon before moving it. The few seconds this takes can be decisive for the outcome of your mission. Another thing is that you can't select more than four troops in a group, so attacking with large groups will take alot of time, as you'll need to select each small group of four, give them the same order as before and hope the troups before will manage until enough others have arrived. These reduce the gameplay slightly, but not so much anybody with some strategic insight can't overcome these slight problems. At the end, it adds to the challenge.
Any gamer can't be a true gamer without having played Warcraft, so if you concider yourself a gamer, grab this game. If you already have played it, you'll know why. Otherwise, you're not a true gamer and need to get it in order to get closer to becoming one.
The CD version of Warcraft seems to hang at the main menu unless you press the ALT-TAB key combination to leave the DOS window (this will not exit the game on either Windows XP or DOSBox), then simply select the window (it may have minimized to the taskbar). You will now be able to enjoy the game without interruption!
The CD version of Warcraft also comes with the Warcraft Unit Editor (run by opening WAR_EDIT.EXE), which allows you to create and edit your own units. However, this has not been tested, so there are no guarantees on how it will run.