Monday, 13 August 2007

Starcraft, Warhammer 40k and Starship Troopers

What have they got in common? Space, aliens, humans as militaristic, self-serving assholes and they all make me want to join up with the army. I’d quickly be killed of course, in some kind of embarrassing accident, like having a grenade drop from my belt and land in the toilet bowl I was using.

Starcraft Terrans

The descendants of a thousand generations of rude boys, chavs, crack fiends, sent to the ends of the galaxy, accidentally colonizing a far off world, a galactic Australia. It’s a little bit worrying that Blizzard predicts that in the distant future, we will not only being speaking with a Confederate twang but also take on much of the xenophobic culture too.

The Zerg

An experiment by ancient beings to create the ultimate life form. It seems to me, that if I were part of an ancient race that had mastered space travel, nay, the very building blocks of life, I’d spend my time creating the ‘ultimate massage life form’ or ‘the ultimate sexual pleasure life form,’ something useful. It’s in the name, ‘ultimate’ life form, that there’s a good chance these creatures will baulk off their shackles and annihilate you.

Still, they are fun to play. If you’ve ever imagined what its like to control a hive of ants, wasps, termites etc then this is the army of destruction for you. How can you say no to a giant eye called the Overmind? It’s a trick question, you can’t, it has mind control.

The Protoss.

Yeah, yeah, pro and toss. Ancient but not as ancient as the ancients I mentioned before. Confused? They too were created as the ultimate life form but ultimately said, ‘piss off, I’m having a good time being psychic and having cool light blades.’ Pragmatic and spiritual, the Protoss were always my favourite race but as I become more disillusioned, I like destroying everything with the Zerg.

Next, Warhammer 40K


Humans in the 41st Centaury are a lot like now: Xenophobic, religious, superstitious warmongers and there’s far too many of them. Humanity spreads across the cosmos until crossing paths with alien species that want to rumble in a genocidal way.

Humanity is lead by a crippled and ancient Emperor who sits on Earth in the most pimped out chair imaginable. It’s bigger than that tower they’re building in Dubai.

Things aren’t groovy and we’re constantly at war but it’s all right because there are so many people to throw at the war effort chances are we’ll win eventually. The Empire is very similar to the Terran Domain from Starcraft. Both have advanced technology that still manages to convey a look of imperfection and bodged togetherness. In both instances you get the feeling that the universe might be better off without humanity, due in part, to its corruption and moral ambiguity.


Based largely on Hans Ruedi Giger designs for the anorexic Alien from the Alien series, (he also makes bony furniture) they are bio-engineered insects from outer space, B-movietastic.

Invading the Milk Way for raw materials, but not finding any chocolate bars, they started attacking everything else instead. The Tyranids and Zerg are almost exactly the same. Both operate like a hive society with complete obedience to the Hive mind. Both seek to consume as much genetic material as possible, assimilating new species into the fold.

The Eldar

They look a bit like Elves, Tolkien not Father Christmas. They’re pretty ancient too and technologically advanced enough that they just want to piss about and enjoy themselves. This larking about nearly got them wiped out though. All that debauchery and raw enjoyment was being made corporal in another dimension. That build up of ‘chaos’ energy ripped through into our universe with the force of a thousand exploding suns.

It’s sort of the equivalent of Las Vegas, New Orleans (when it was still dry and partyable) and lets say, Ibiza, all being erased from the map, Sodom and Gomorrah style.

Not physically similar to the Protoss, they do share a lot of the same cultural and spiritual values as well as an arrogance when dealing with 'younger races.' I’m like that with anyone under twenty, ‘shouldn’t you be chasing the horse or firing up the dragon, you yoots!’

The Eldar are a Baptist Preacher's wet dream. Sin and you risk tearing the universe apart.

Finally, Starship Troopers

Terran Federation

A militaristic world government controls everything. You only get to vote for the equivalent of the world president, and then only if you’ve completed federal service.

The Arachnids

Again, just like the Tyranids and the Zerg, in fact like all insectoid species.

The Arachnids have a ‘brain bug’ that looks like a giant blister and has a mouth like a vagina. I’m glad to say that unlike a vagina the brain bug can suck out your brain through a bio-straw, learning valuable information about the enemy. Good times.

Sadly, there is no equivalent to the Protoss or Eldar in Starship Troopers, as that would have added a neat symmetry to all this rambling. My tea’s cold, this is over.


Tad said...

what about the human psychics? kind of sub-group of it?

Bjam said...

Do you mean the ‘Ghosts’ from Starcraft? I don't think being female was a requirement but being psychic couldn't have hurt.

I remember that Blizzard was going to make an action adventure game with a female ghost, creatively titled, Starcraft: Ghost.

A Lara Croft in space kind of thing. I suppose she could be one of the few women that could actually break your heart just by thinking it...

Anonymous said...

There are a protoss equivelent in Starship Troopers– they're called the Skinnies. They didn't make it into the vastly inferior movie.

Bjam said...

Would they be the archenemies of the Obesities?

Anonymous said...

bjam knows how to put down the best of geeks. Well played sir!

Bjam said...

Thanks anonymous, one day I hope all geeks will be able to openly post comments on blogs :)

Kristian said...

Resurrecting a dead post. But I just came across it.
It is no surprise that Starship Troopers, Starcraft and Warhammer 40,000 have so much in common.
Games Workshop based their Tyranids race on the Aliens in the Alien movies, and the Arachnids in the Starship troopers movies.
While Starcraft based their Zerg on the Arachnids and Tyranids.

It has been claimed somewhere, that Warcraft and Starcraft were originally meant to be Games Workshop licensed Warhammer and Warhammer 40,000 games. But did not get the license, do not know if it is true, but would explain alot of the similarities.

NPH gets it on said...