Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness
|Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness|
|Publisher(s)||Davidson & Associates|
|Platform(s)||DOS, Mac OS, Saturn, PlayStation, Microsoft Windows|
|Release||PC, Mac OS
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness is a fantasy-themed real-time strategy (RTS) game published by Blizzard Entertainment and released for DOS in 1995 and for Mac OS in 1996. It was met with positive reviews and won most of the major PC gaming awards in 1996. It sold over 2 million copies.
In 1996, Blizzard released an expansion pack Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal for DOS and Mac OS, and a compilation Warcraft II: The Dark Saga for the PlayStation and Sega Saturn. The Battle.net Edition, released in 1999, provided Blizzard's online gaming service, Battle.net, and replaced the MS-DOS version with a Windows one.
Players collect resources, and produce buildings and units in order to defeat an opponent in combat. Players gain access to more advanced units upon construction of tech buildings and research. The majority of the main screen shows the part of the territory on which the player is currently operating, and the minimap can select another location to appear in the larger display. The fog of war completely hides all territory which the player has not explored. Terrain is always visible once revealed, but enemy units remain visible only so long as they stay within a friendly unit's visual radius.
Warcraft II's predecessor Warcraft: Orcs & Humans, released in 1994, gained good reviews, collected three awards and was a finalist for three others, and achieved solid commercial success. The game was the first typical RTS to be presented in a medieval setting and, by bringing multiplayer facilities to a wider audience, made this mode essential for future RTS titles. Warcraft: Orcs & Humans laid the ground for Blizzard's style of RTS, which emphasized personality and storyline. Although Blizzard's successful StarCraft, released in 1998, was set in a different universe, it was similar to Warcraft II in gameplay and in attention to personality and storyline. In 1996 Blizzard announced Warcraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans, an adventure game in the Warcraft universe, but canceled the game in 1998. Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos, released in 2002, used parts of Warcraft Adventures characters and storyline and extended the gameplay used in Warcraft II.
Warcraft II is a real-time strategy game. In Warcraft II one side represents the human inhabitants of Lordaeron and allied races, and the other controls the invading orcs and their allied races. Each side tries to destroy the other by collecting resources and creating an army. The game is played in a medieval setting with fantasy elements, where both sides have melee, ranged, naval and aerial units, and spellcasters.
Warcraft II allows players to play AI opponents in separate Human and Orc campaigns, and in stand-alone scenarios. Most of the campaign missions follow the pattern "collect resources, build buildings and units, destroy opponents". However, some have other objectives, such as rescuing troops or forts, or escorting important characters through enemy territory.
The game's map editor allows players to develop scenarios for use in multiplayer contests and against AI opponents. The editor runs under the Mac and also under either Windows 95 or, if the WinG library was installed, under Windows 3.
The scenarios can be played against the AI or in multiplayer games with up to eight players participating. The DOS version initially provided multiplayer games by null modem cable, modem or IPX, and Mac players could also play via TCP/IP or AppleTalk. Blizzard quickly released a facility to connect with Kali, which allows programs to access the Web by means of IPX.
Economy and war
Warcraft II requires players to collect resources, and to produce buildings and units in order to defeat an opponent in combat. The Human Town Hall and Orc Great Hall produce basic workers that dig gold from mines and chop wood from forests and then deliver them to their Halls. Both buildings can be upgraded twice, each increasing usable resources per load from the workers. Players can also construct Shipyards, which can produce both combat ships and Oil Tankers. Tankers build construction offshore Oil Platforms and then deliver the oil to buildings on the shoreline. As all three resources are non-renewable, players must use them efficiently,; forests players can also serve as defensive walls in the early game when combat forces are small.
Workers can also construct Farms, each of which provides food for up to four units, and additional units cannot be produced until enough Farms are built. Farms, being very tough for their cost, are also employed as defensive walls.
Humans and Orcs have sets of buildings with similar functions, but different names and graphics, for producing ground, naval, and air units. All but basic combat units require the assistance of other buildings, or must be produced at buildings that have prerequisite buildings, or both. Many buildings can upgrade combat units. When advanced units appear, the Orcs have a strong advantage in ground combat, while the Humans have the more powerful fleet and spellcasters. The most advanced ground combatants on each side can be upgraded and taught some spells, which are different for the two sides. Some campaign missions feature hero units, which are more powerful than normal units of the same type, have unique pictures and names, and must not die, as that causes the failure of the mission.
The main screen has five areas:
- Along the top are the menu button and counts of the player's resources and Farm capacity.
- The largest area of the screen, to the right, shows the part of the territory on which the player is currently operating. This enables the player to select friendly units and buildings.
- The top left is the minimap, which shows the whole territory at smaller scale and highlights the part on which the player is currently operating. By clicking or dragging in the minimap, the player can select another location to appear in the larger display.
- The unit descriptions in the area in middle on the left shows the units and/or buildings. If units of the same type are selected, this area have an icon for each unit, showing the unit's vital statistics including the unit's health.
- If a single unit or building is selected, the area at the bottom left shows the actions the object can perform and all completed upgrades that apply to this type of unit or building.
Initially most of the main map and minimap are blacked out, but the visible area expands as the player's units explore the map. The fog of war completely hides all territory which the player has not explored, and shows only terrain but hides opponents units and buildings if none of the player's units are present. All functions can be invoked by both the mouse and shortcut keys, including game setup, the menu options and some gameplay functions including scrolling and pausing the game. Units and buildings can be selected by clicking or [clarification needed], and then their actions can be controlled by the mouse or keys.
The Second War
The First War brought the Fall of Azeroth, following the Orc campaign in Warcraft: Orcs & Humans. The survivors of Azeroth have fled by sea to the Human kingdom of Lordaeron, and the Orcs have decided to conquer Lordaeron, in what is known as the Second War. Both sides have acquired allies and new capabilities, including naval and air units, and more powerful spellcasters.
In the Second War, the Orcs are successful at first, but the Humans and their allies take the initiative, partly thanks to an Orc rebellion initiated by the warlock Gul'dan, who seeks and raises the sunken Tomb of Sargeras. Eventually, the Alliance forces push the Horde to Blackrock Spire, but Anduin Lothar, commander of the Alliance, is slain there. At the final battle around the Dark Portal in Azeroth, the Alliance exterminates one Orc clan and captures the Orc supreme commander and the remnants of his forces. Hoping to avoid further invasions, the Alliance destroys the Portal.
Through the Portal
After the Second War the Alliance lost the allegiance of the Elves, who thought the Alliance had not done enough to defend the Elves' home, and of two Human kingdoms, which advocated exterminating the remaining Orcs rather than keeping them in captivity. One Orc clan that had fought in the Second War's final battle was unaccounted for. Although the Dark Portal had been destroyed, a tear in reality hovered over the ruin. A few years later, the Portal and rift were hidden by a strange darkness, and there were the sounds of hundreds warriors rushing away through the rift, followed by shrieking Dragons, and finally by the repeating phrase, "We will return..." When the darkness lifted, Alliance scouts found the ground around the Portal trampled to mud – apparently the elusive Orc clan had escaped to their race's homeworld, Draenor.
The greatest Orc shaman led an army from Draenor into Azeroth, apparently hoping to steal magical artifacts with which to create further Portals. The Alliance, expecting an attack, sent through the Portal an army led by the Alliance's supreme commander, its greatest heroes and the mage who had destroyed the Azeroth Portal. It seems they destroyed the counterpart of the Azeroth Portal, but it was not known whether the force escaped from Draenor.
After seeing the excellent response of Warcraft: Orcs & Humans, released in November 1994, Blizzard Entertainment started working on Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness. Development began in February 1995 and the game was released in December for MS-DOS and in August 1996 for the Macintosh. Blizzard later explained that the small budgets of the time allowed short development times. The response of Warcraft: Orcs & Humans also allowed Blizzard to recruit additional top-class developers. The company's initial design combined modern and fantasy elements, such as fighter pilots ambushed by a fire-breathing dragon. However, they found that this was unsatisfactory, and that there was plenty of content for a fantasy RTS. The initial release of Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness ran over a local area network using IPX but not over the Internet communications protocol TCP/IP. Kali, which used the Internet as if it was a local area network, became very popular and Blizzard quickly provided to players a program that made it easy to set up multiplayer Warcraft II games using Kali.
In 1996 Blizzard published Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal, an expansion pack developed by Cyberlore Studios, with new Human and Orc campaigns, using new and much more powerful heroes. Later that year the company released Warcraft II: Battle Chest, a compilation of Tides of Darkness and Beyond the Dark Portal, for DOS and Windows 3.
In 1996 WizardWorks published W!Zone, an expansion pack developed by Sunstorm Interactive, Inc. and authorized by Blizzard Entertainment. It was followed by W!Zone II: Retribution, an expansion pack published by WizardWorks and authorized by Blizzard Entertainment
In 1997 Maverick Software published The Next 70 Levels an expansion pack developed by Maverick Software and authorized by Blizzard Entertainment. It was followed by The Next 350 Levels, an expansion pack published by Maverick Software and authorized by Blizzard Entertainment
Blizzard sold exclusive worldwide rights to develop, publish, and distribute console versions of the game to Electronic Arts. In 1997 Electronic Arts released Warcraft II: The Dark Saga for the Sony PlayStation and Sega Saturn, which combined the campaigns of Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness and Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal. The Dark Saga also allowed players to automate upgrade of buildings and production of units, and to select more troops at once, facilities that were not extended to the DOS and Mac versions.,
In 1999 Blizzard published the Warcraft II: Battle.net Edition for Windows and Mac, which combined the original game and the expansion pack, retained the Macintosh facilities and replaced the DOS version with a Windows version that included Blizzard's online service, Battle.net, for multiplayer games. After considering new content, Blizzard preferred to make it easy for new and older fans to play each other. Battle.net Edition included some user interface enhancements from StarCraft – a hot key to center on events, assigning numbers to groups of units, and double-clicking to select all units of a type. However they excluded production queues and waypoints.
Warcraft II debuted at #2 on PC Data's monthly computer game sales chart for December 1995, behind Myst. It held the spot in January 1996, but dropped to #3 in its third month. The game stayed in PC Data's top 3 from April through October, securing first place in April, August and September. After falling to #5 in November, it exited the top 10 the following month. Warcraft II achieved worldwide sales of 500,000 units within three months of release, and of over 1.2 million by November. This made it the world's most commercially successful computer game of the year as of that month, according to PC Data. In the United States, it was the second-best-selling computer game of 1996, again behind Myst. The game sold 835,680 copies and earned $34.5 million in the region for the year. To capitalize on this success, Blizzard released the Warcraft Battlechest on November 11, which bundled Warcraft: Orcs & Humans with Warcraft II and the Into the Dark Portal add-on.
Warcraft II claimed position 13 in PC Data's monthly sales rankings for January 1997, while the Warcraft Battlechest SKU took sixth place. The original game exited the top 20 after a 16th-place finish in February. However, the Battlechest consistently continued to chart through May, peaking at ninth in February. After an absence in June, it returned to the top 10 for two months, before falling to #16 in September and exiting PC Data's top 20 in October. The Warcraft Battlechest was the United States' 17th-highest computer game seller of the year, with sales of 262,911 units.
Warcraft II as a whole reached 2 million global sales by July 1998, and passed 2.5 million by year's end. By September 1999, it had sold 1,250,675 units in the United States alone, which led PC Data to declare it the country's sixth-best-selling computer game since January 1993. Sales continued the following month, when the Warcraft II Battle.net Edition SKU finished 20th for October in the country. As of 2001, worldwide sales of Warcraft II had surpassed 3 million units, with two-thirds derived from the United States.
|Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness (1995–96)|
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness earned enthusiastic reviews, elevating Blizzard to the elite along with Westwood Studios, id Software and LucasArts. The rivalry between Blizzard's series and Westwood Studios' Command & Conquer series fueled the RTS boom of the late 1990s.
In 1996 GameSpot, Next Generation, and Computer Games Magazine regarded the AI as better than in Warcraft: Orcs & Humans, and Computer Games Magazine also said that Warcraft II "surpasses the original game in almost every way". GameSpot approved how the innovative fog of war forced players to scout continuously, and IGN's retroview agreed. Next Generation said that the new units and resources open up a multitude of strategic possibilities, but that the game's greatest improvement over the original Warcraft is its intuitive new control system which allows players to select multiple units at once and access command menus by right-clicking. The Adrenaline Vault noted that players must manage their resources, as all resources run out. GameSpot's retrospective review was enthusiastic about the variety of strategies that players with different styles can use, and The Adrenaline Vault noted that maps set in winter often allow ground units to walk on the ice. Macworld's Michael Gowen wrote, "This game set the standard for the genre and still represents one of the best titles available. If you haven't played it, you have missed something."
PC Gamer US named Warcraft II the best game of 1995. The editors called it an "easy" choice, and wrote that "Warcraft II stand[s] out — way out — as the most impressive, most entertaining, game of 1995". The magazine also presented Warcraft II with the award for 1995's "Best Multi-Player Game". The editors of Macworld gave the game their 1996 "Best Strategy Game" award. It also won Computer Game Review's 1995 "Military Sim of the Year" award, tied with Steel Panthers. The same year, Next Generation listed it as number 10 on their "Top 100 Games of All Time", explaining that "The strategy is complex, the classy SVGA graphics keep the player in touch with everything that's going on, and WarCraft II features the best use of sampled speech we've ever experienced." Warcraft II was a runner-up for Computer Gaming World's 1995 "Strategy Game of the Year" award, which ultimately went to Command & Conquer and Heroes of Might and Magic (tie). The editors wrote that Warcraft II "will keep you glued to the computer for hours on end", and noted that it "could have won had the competition not been so strong." MacUser declared Warcraft II one of 1996's top 50 CD-ROMs.
The IGN review considered WarCraft II in general a well-balanced game, but GameSpot's retrospective review regarded Ogre-Mages with the Bloodlust spell as too powerful. IGN found that searching for the survivors of a defeated opponent could be tedious, and that the first few missions were very easy, although the final ones were challenging.
In 1996 GameSpot, Computer Games Magazine and Entertainment Weekly praised the SVGA graphics. The retrospective reviews by IGN and GameSpot enjoyed smaller details, such as the increasingly humorous responses when a player's units were repeatedly clicked, the "critters" that wandered around, and the detonating of Sappers/Bombers. WarCraft II won most of the major PC gaming awards in 1996, and sold millions of copies. Players were still playing in 2002, on DOS or using the Battle.net edition.
Retrospective reviews by IGN and GameSpot emphasized the ability to join multiplayer games on local networks or using Kali, and the simple but effective map editor, with which some users published maps on the Web. Another GameSpot review in 1996 commented that the campaigns are rather short, but the scenario builder and multiplayer options were ample compensation.
The Dark Saga
GameSpot was pleased that the ports of the consoles Sony PlayStation and Sega Saturn, combining Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness and Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal, are practically identical. Reviewers in GameSpot for the PS and Saturn suggested that players with PCs should not buy the console versions, but recommended the game to those who use only consoles. Absolute PlayStation and Electronic Gaming Monthly omitted comparisons with the PC and praised the console versions. Sega Saturn Magazine gave the Saturn version a 91%, calling it "a highly enjoyable and compelling strategy warfare game" and praising it as superior to the PC original.
Absolute PlayStation, Sega Saturn Magazine, and Electronic Gaming Monthly commented that the console versions have no multiplayer capability, but were impressed with the number of campaign and skirmish maps. The two GameSpot reviews noted that, while most campaign missions follow the "resource, build, destroy" pattern, some have other objectives.
Absolute PlayStation and Electronic Gaming Monthly regarded the console buttons easy to use. GameSpot's review for the PS noted that the player can to auto-upgrade buildings, auto-build units, and select more troops at once than in the PC version.
Absolute PlayStation praised the graphics and sound, while Electronic Gaming Monthly regarded the graphics as serviceable but praised the sound.
GameSpot thought the AI was predictable but very efficient and the multiplayer facilities, while four years old, made it more enjoyable than at least half the new RTS games released in 1999. The Battle.net service was already reliable after being refined through experience on Diablo and StarCraft, and the fact that it was free would be attractive both to new users and those of earlier editions. While the production values were those of 1995, the cartoonish graphics and excellent sound effects and musical score were still enjoyable in 1999.
- "Warcraft II: Battle.Net Edition goes gold". Blizzard Entertainment. October 1, 1999. Archived from the original on October 12, 1999. Retrieved October 4, 2007.
- Geryk, Bruce. "GameSpot Presents: A History of Real-Time Strategy Games – The Sequels". Retrieved February 5, 2010.
- Fahs, Travis (August 18, 2009). "IGN Presents the History of Warcraft – War with Westwood". IGN. Retrieved February 5, 2010.
- WC2 Tides: Manual Alliance & Orc Units, pp. 42–47, 69–74
- Geryk, Bruce. "GameSpot Presents: A History of Real-Time Strategy Games – The First Wave". Retrieved November 17, 2009.
- "Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness – PC Review – Coming Soon Magazine". Coming Soon Magazine!. 1996. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
- WC2 Tides: Manual Alliance & Orc Units, pp. 48–50, 75–77
- Fielder, Joe (September 30, 1997). "Warcraft II: The Dark Saga Review for PlayStation – GameSpot". GameSpot. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
- WC2 Tides: Manual Map Editor, pp. 24–27
- WC2 Tides: Manual Multiplay, pp. 17–20
- WC2 Tides: Manual Alliance & Orc Buildings, pp. 51–54, 78–81
- "The Adrenaline Vault – Review – Warcraft 2". NewWorld.com, Inc. Archived from the original on November 25, 1999. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
- "Warcraft II Strategy: General Strategy". Battle.net. Blizzard Entertainment. Retrieved March 16, 2010.
- WC2 Tides: Manual Alliance & Orc Dependencies, pp. 55–56, 82–83
- "Warcraft II Strategy: Orcs vs Humans!". Battle.net. Blizzard Entertainment. Retrieved March 16, 2010.
- WC2 Tides: Manual Paladin & Ogre-Mage Spells, pp. 48, 75
- Dulin, Ron (May 21, 1996). "Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal Review". GameSpot. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
- WC2 Tides: Manual Tutorial, pp. 6–16
- WC3 Reign: Manual pp. 2–3
- WC2 Tides: Manual Aftermath, pp. 85–86
- Blizzard Entertainment. WarCraft II: Tides of Darkness. PC. Level/area: Human Campaign, mission 13: "Assault on Blackrock Spire".
- Blizzard does not state when, but the event was soon after the completion of a castle build to guard the tear in reality, WC2 Tides: Manual Athermath, pp. 85–86
- Keighley, Geoffrey. "GameSpot Presents: Eye of the Storm – A Million Orcs". GameSpot. CNET Networks, Inc. Retrieved May 11, 2010.
- Roca, Jr., Michael. Review – Warcraft 2: Tides of Darkness. MacGamer. Archived from the original on November 1, 2002. Retrieved June 17, 2010.
- Keighley, Geoffrey. "GameSpot Presents: Eye of the Storm – Ogre Entertainment". GameSpot. CNET Networks, Inc. Retrieved May 11, 2010.
- Keighley, Geoffrey. "GameSpot Presents: Eye of the Storm – Passing Muster". GameSpot. CNET Networks, Inc. Retrieved May 10, 2010.
- Fahs, Travis (August 18, 2009). "IGN Presents the History of Warcraft – War with Westwood". IGN. Retrieved February 9, 2010.
- "Warcraft II: Battle Chest". IGN. Retrieved February 3, 2012.
- "In the Studio". Next Generation. No. 23. Imagine Media. November 1996. p. 17.
- Kasavin, Greg (November 10, 1999). "Warcraft II: Battle.net Edition Review – GameSpot". CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved June 6, 2015.
- "Warcraft II: Battle.net Edition". IGN. Retrieved February 3, 2012.
- Staff (April 1996). "Leaderboard". PC Entertainment (28): 20.
- Moran, John M. (April 1, 1996). "Computer Games No Longer Just For Children". Hartford Courant. p. 3. Archived from the original on April 2, 2018.
- Staff (May 4, 1994). "Best-selling Titles: Games MS-DOS/Windows". Orlando Sentinel. Archived from the original on April 2, 2018.
- Staff (June 29, 1996). "Top Software Best-selling Titles: Games". Hartford Courant. Archived from the original on April 2, 2018.
- GamerX (August 8, 1996). "June's top 30 games". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on February 5, 1997.
- GamerX (September 27, 1996). "August's top 30 games". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on February 5, 1997.
- GamerX (November 27, 1996). "October's top 30 games". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on February 5, 1997.
- GamerX (January 10, 1997). "November's 30 best-sellers". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on February 5, 1997.
- Staff (April 1997). "PC Data Best-Sellers". Computer Gaming World (153): 32.
- [dead link]
- "Blizzard Entertainment - 10th Anniversary Feature". Blizzard Entertainment. February 5, 2001. Blizzard Timeline. Archived from the original on April 2, 2002.
- Mooney, Shane (November 20, 1996). "The Warcraft treasure chest". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on February 5, 1997.
- [dead link]
- Staff (November 9, 1996). "WarCraft II Number One in '96". Next Generation. Archived from the original on June 6, 1997.
- Kilborn, Robert; Hanson, Cynthia; Hodges, Debbie (February 27, 1997). "News In Brief". Christian Science Monitor. Archived from the original on April 2, 2018.
- Miller, Greg (March 3, 1997). "Myst Opportunities: Game Makers Narrow Their Focus to Search for the Next Blockbuster". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on May 18, 2016.
- "Media Alert". Web.archive.org. December 20, 1996. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
- "Blizzard Unleashes Battle Chest". Next Generation. November 12, 1996. Archived from the original on June 6, 1997.
- GamerX (April 15, 1997). "February's 30 best-sellers". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on July 20, 1997.
- Lee, Helen (May 1, 1997). "PC Data Releases Monthly Numbers". GameSpot. Archived from the original on March 6, 2000.
- GamerX (July 10, 1997). "May's 30 best-sellers". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on July 20, 1997.
- GamerX (August 29, 1997). "July's 30 Best-Sellers". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on February 23, 1999.
- GamerX (November 6, 1997). "September's 30 Best-Sellers". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on February 23, 1999.
- GamerX (November 26, 1997). "October's Best-Sellers". CNET Gamecenter. Archived from the original on February 20, 1999.
- Staff (April 1998). "The Best-Selling Games of 1997". PC Gamer US. 5 (4): 44.
- "Warcraft II Comes to Battle.net with New Platinum Edition" (Press release). Irvine, California: Blizzard Entertainment. July 10, 1998. Archived from the original on January 27, 1999.
- IGN Staff (November 1, 1999). "PC Data Top Games of All Time". IGN. Archived from the original on March 2, 2000.
- Mullen, Micheal (November 19, 1999). "Age II Takes October by Storm". GameSpot. Archived from the original on March 10, 2000.
- "Blizzard Entertainment - 10th Anniversary Feature". Blizzard Entertainment. February 5, 2001. Frank: Warcraft!. Archived from the original on April 2, 2002.
- "Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness for PC – GameRankings". Game Rankings. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
- Cirulis, Martin E. (March 1996). "More Orcs and Humans". Computer Gaming World (140): 206, 208.
- Ferris, Duke (June 5, 1996). "Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness review for the PC". GameRevolution. AtomicOnline, LLC. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
- Dulin, Ron (May 1, 1996). "Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness Review for PC – GameSpot". GameSpot. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
- Keating, Tim (1996). "We're under attack!". Computer Games Magazine. Archived from the original on January 30, 2003. Retrieved April 14, 2010.
- Kim, Albert (March 22, 1996). "Warcraft II – News – EW.com". EW.com. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
- "Tsunami". Next Generation. No. 15. Imagine Media. March 1996. p. 91.
- Gowan, Michael (February 1999). "Name Your Game; From Goofy to Gory, Macworld Reviews 48 Ways to Play". Macworld. Archived from the original on August 10, 2001.
- The Editors of MacUser (December 1996). "MacUser's 1996 Top 50 CD-ROMs". Games. Archived from the original on June 5, 2000.
- Bates, Jason (January 31, 2002). "IGN: PC Retroview: WarCraft II". IGN.com. IGN Entertainment, Inc. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
- Colayco, Bob. "The Greatest Games of All Time: Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness – Features at GameSpot". GameSpot. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved November 30, 2009. The full list is at GameSpot Editorial Team. "The Greatest Games of All Time". GameSpot. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved November 30, 2009.
- Editors of PC Gamer (March 1996). "The Year's Best Games". PC Gamer US. 3 (3): 64, 65, 67, 68, 71, 73–75.
- Levy, Steven (January 1997). "1997 Macintosh Game Hall of Fame". Macworld. Archived from the original on January 8, 2003.
- Staff (April 1996). "CGR's Year in Review". Computer Game Review. Archived from the original on October 18, 1996.
- "Top 100 Games of All Time". Next Generation. No. 21. Imagine Media. September 1996. p. 68.
- Staff (June 1996). "The Computer Gaming World 1996 Premier Awards". Computer Gaming World (143): 55, 56, 58, 60, 62, 64, 66, 67.
- Fielder, Joe (September 30, 1997). "Warcraft II: The Dark Saga Review for PlayStation – GameSpot". GameSpot. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved February 14, 2018.
- Fielder, Joe (Sep 30, 1997). "Warcraft II: The Dark Saga Review for Saturn – GameSpot". Warcraft II: The Dark Saga Review for Saturn – GameSpot. Retrieved February 12, 2010.
- "Warcraft 2 – Review – Absolute Playstation". Absolute PlayStation. Retrieved February 12, 2010.
- Nutter, Lee (September 1997). "Review: Warcraft II". Sega Saturn Magazine (23). Emap International Limited. pp. 76–77.
- Underwood, Peter, ed. (1995). Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness. Irvine, California, USA: Blizzard Entertainment.
- Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos. Blizzard Entertainment. 2002.