Warcraft is a household name in the gaming world at this point, whether it’s the enormously popular MMO World of Warcraft or the beloved Warcraft RTS series. While Blizzard continues to push remasters and remakes to varying degrees of success, fans have taken it upon themselves to create passionate fan projects that honestly match the efforts – and in some cases, completely outdo – even Blizzard. The latest Warcraft fan project, titled Warcraft: Chronicles of The Second War, is a fine example of this.
Created by the LoreCraft mod team, a group of modders who spent nearly half a decade on the project, Warcraft: Chronicles of The Second War is a highly ambitious effort to completely remaster and update the Horde campaign from Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness using the upgraded engine of Warcraft III: Reforged, acting as a companion piece to the experience. It not only revitalises the original campaign with a ton of work put into it, the fan project also acts as a rope that ties together story elements from World of Warcraft and the rest of the series.
This includes 17 missions, new cinematics, hero characters, boss encounters, a recrafted soundtrack, naval combat, new voice acting and much more, all hand-crafted and remade by the LoreCraft mod team.
A message from the LoreCraft team better explains why they chose to develop the project:
“Since the release of Warcraft 3 Reign of Chaos and Frozen Throne – I had a dream to recreate Warcraft 2 campaigns using the Warcraft 3 engine capabilities. I’ve been creating maps and models, doing long pauses, quitting and remaking stuff for years. When Warcraft III: Reforged was released it inspired me to finish this campaign. At that time in early 2020 new teammates that were driven by the same inner fire, contributed to the project significantly – @Shadi, @Moonman, @Bagysta, @Triceron and @Antontama.”
“Chronicles of the Second War: Tides of Darkness is the attempt to reforge the Warcraft 2 Tides of Darkness Campaign,” continued the team. “This is very complicated and challenging task because of great discrepancies between WC2 and WC3/
If you follow the LoreCraft team on Twitter/X, you can trace the project’s development progress back to as early as 2020. You can see below just how much effort went into remastering the campaign, which is honestly impressive:
The Nostalgia started here 🙂 pic.twitter.com/09IynbK07L
— LoreCraft Designs (@LoreCraftMod) January 8, 2024
Warcraft: Chronicles of The Second War – Tides of Darkness is currently available to download on PC via Hiveworkshop.
That said, there’s been some discussions online about the way fans tend to tackle fan-made projects. Keep in mind, the scope of some of these works often extends to several years in development, matching or coming near the ambitions of most AAA games – often only with a very small group of people.
For example, the upcoming Skyblivion mod aims to remake the entirety of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion in Bethesda’s Creation Engine as a total conversion mod for Skyrim. Similarly, there’s a modding team working to remake The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (called Skywind) using the same tools. Since these are simply fan projects and not official releases, they will be released as free content for players (with other means to financially support the teams, naturally).
Technically they’re still being built on the same blueprints as Skyrim complete with the same UI, but it’s still remarkable that further effort such as complete voice acting, animation improvements, cutscenes, scenarios, quest structuring and more go into these works. It goes to show that the demand for these remakes are still high and where companies might fail to see the value in them, the fans will happily oblige.