May 27, 2022

Gameplay of ‘Cancelled’ StarCraft: Ghost Surfaces

On September 20th, 2002 Blizzard Entertainment announced StarCraft: Ghost to phenomenal reception. Fans had waited years to see the Starcraft franchise stretch it’s legs into other genres outside real-time strategy. Some had hoped for a StarCraft MMO in the same vein as World of WarCraft, however a 3rd person action adventure game was what Blizzard had in mind. Fast forward 3 years from the announcement of StarCraft: Ghost, and it’s in a state of “indefinite hold” (not technically cancelled). Jump ahead another 15 years, and leaked footage of a playable build of StarCraft: Ghost has surfaced. ResetEra has speculated that these playable builds may have been from a devkit leak.

We’ve compiled the most prominent gameplay leaks for your viewing pleasure. The following footage was supplied by the proceeding YouTube users. The first of which started a cascade of Ghost leaks, shows an individual playing through one of the game’s opening missions – with some questionable aim.

YouTube player
Delso Bezerra
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RetroGamerBB2019

This footage exemplifies some of the probable issues plaguing the title, primarily crashing. The following is the largest of the leaks, covering levels 2-6.

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Stranno

Now, by today’s standards It can be understood that what’s been presented is nothing special – standard 3rd person stealth/shooter action. But back in 2002, graphics of this caliber were outstanding, and fans were watering at the mouth for anything StarCraft. The anticipation and impending hold placed on StarCraft: Ghost was incredibly disappointing to many fans, myself included. Though fans kept a close eye on Ghost news in the following years, it was only met with further dismay. Years later some of the individuals involded from Blizzard opened up a little about the project and it’s indefinite hiatus.

It’s always really, really hard to make those kind of decisions. It was hard when we canceled Warcraft Adventures. It was hard when we canceled StarCraft Ghost. But it has always resulted in better-quality work

Mike Morhaime to Polygon in regards to ‘Titan’
Blizzard’s former CEO Rob Pardo had this to say to next-gen.biz in 2007

I still believe in that game and the characters but were not able to execute [the game] at the level we wanted to

Rob Pardo

Even with the term ‘indefinite hold’ assigned to StarCraft: Ghost, the then CEO still uses the dreaded word “canceled”. Though we all knew Ghost’s fate long ago. Maybe now we have a clearer picture of what it means to not live up to the old Blizzard’s standard of quality. What has been presented looks to have had a solid foundation with the potential to be crafted into something great – too bad we will never know.

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But at least we can finally see what could have been – impressive or otherwise. Do you remember the hype for StarCraft: Ghost? Were you excited? What do you think of the leaked gameplay? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.


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