Starcraft 2 Characters - Introduction
Starcraft may often be evoked as the ultimate multiplayer RTS, but it has always sported a deep, complex and well-written storyline as well. Starcraft 2: Wings of Liberty looks set to up the ante, with over 45 minutes of cinematics propelling the story along. For those players who want to go beyond unit stats and build orders, we take a look at the principal Starcraft 2 characters.
Jim Raynor is the focus of Starcraft 2: Wings of Liberty, and players will see the story unfold through his eyes. A central character in the previous Starcraft games and expansions, Raynor was a commander in the anti-Confederate rebel faction the Sons of Korhal until its leader Arcturus Mengsk betrayed Sarah Kerrigan, who Raynor was infatuated with, and left her to be captured by the Zerg. Raynor in turn abandoned Mengsk, and stole the starship Hyperion, forming his own group of rebels, nicknamed “Raynor’s Raiders”. By the time of Starcraft 2, Raynor and his crew are struggling, having to accept mercenary work, but events will soon push him to galactic prominence again.
Once a Terran endowed with psychic abilities, and friend of Jim Raynor, Sarah Kerrigan was captured by the Zerg on Tarsonis. Placed in a chrysalis and transported to Char, Kerrigan became fused with Zerg DNA, creating a Terran/Zerg hybrid. On her emergence, she dubbed herself “The Queen of Blades”, and became involved in a struggle for control of the Zerg Empire. By the time of Wings of Liberty, Infested Kerrigan has become the undisputed leader of the Zerg, though her psychic bond with Raynor continues. Her powers have given her visions of a future where all three races may have to unite against an even greater enemy.
Zeratul is a Protoss Dark Templar who has crossed paths with Raynor before in the Starcraft saga. An honourable creature, he had however allowed himself to be manipulated during the Brood War events by the Queen of Blades into destroying both the Second Overmind and his own Dark Templar Matriarch. Infested Kerrigan has revealed her visions of the coming cataclysm, and Zeratul is terrified by what she has told him. Throughout Starcraft 2, this cryptic speaker of riddles will encounter Raynor and deliver him grave warnings.
Second-in-command of The Hyperion, Matt Horner fled the boring existence of his childhood for a life of adventure amidst the Great War. A former member of the Sons of Korhal, Horner is now dedicated to Raynor, and opposed to injustice and torture. His moral beliefs don’t hamper his usefulness as a tactical officer and outstanding pilot.
A grizzled old Terran marine, Tychus Findlay was a friend of Jim Raynor’s who may have taken the rap and a prison sentence for him. His personality is something of a mystery: terribly in debt and always putting himself first, but to others kind, loyal and self-sacrificing. Raynor certainly holds him in high regard.
Tosh is a Terran ally of Raynor and an agent of his Raiders whose true motivations remain a mystery. A spectre addicted to terrazine gas, Tosh’s dark personality and militaristic viewpoint put him at odds with Matt Horner. Gabriel Tosh will always do whatever it takes to ensure his own survival, no matter what the cost to others. Combined with his psychic abilities, martial arts prowess and sniper rifle, he is a formidable combatant.
Dr. Ariel Hanson is a genius Terran scientist who has allied herself with the cause of Raynor’s Raiders. Selfless and helpful, her character is unlocked in the story by completing a particular mission path, from whence she provides Raynor with much needed support.
The Starcraft lore has become particularly dense, not only from the games themselves but spin-off novels and more. However, Blizzard are determined to make Starcraft 2: Wings of Liberty accessible even to those not steeped in the game’s canon, and have gone to great pains in the game’s opening cinematics to fill in the background of the SC2 world for new players. Hopefully, this introduction to the Starcraft 2 characters will give you a taste for Blizzard’s epic intergalactic RTS.