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I'm what most would consider a "sensitive" fellow, enough that I don't plan on playing SC2's campaign should I decide to buy it. What portions of the ESRB content rating apply to the skirmish and multiplayer modes (not counting online interactions of course)?

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What is it exactly your sensitive to? – Ivo Flipse Nov 9 '10 at 7:13
@Ivo: primarily the suggestive themes and language. I watched a couple of basic Starcraft videos showing unit deaths and stuff, but wasn't really sure how much of the content that was. – RCIX Nov 9 '10 at 21:05
up vote 11 down vote accepted

I think large parts of the ESRB's rating of the game have to do with the themes of Drug Abuse and Genocide prevalent throughout the game, but that's merely a guess. I can tell you the relevant parts of the multilayer:

  • Blood and Gore. A number of the units die in less than pleasant ways. Specifically being skewered or dissolving in acid. These graphics are mostly mild and the units small
  • Drugs. A couple units utilized stimulants as a resource (Marines and Marauders). While you don't see them shoot up there is a sound effect
  • Violence. There is the expect warfare based violence and even the use of Nuclear weapons. If you find these sights disturbing, consider yourself warned.

While these graphics are all present, they are usually small and brief. After an hour of play chances are you'll barely notice them. Then again, those little Marines do have a tendency to explode in to gibbets...

A sample can be found here, consider yourself warned.

The official ESRB rating is Teen for the following reasons:

Blood and Gore, Language, Suggestive Themes, Use of Alcohol and Tobacco, Violence

This is a real-time strategy game featuring armies of futuristic races in conflict with each other. Players control assorted units of humans, warrior races, and aliens through combat missions around several planets. Combat is presented from an overhead perspective: players' soldiers use machine guns, grenades, mobile tanks, lasers, and aircraft to kill enemy units. Artillery fire is depicted with realistic sound effects, including battle cries and yells from injured characters; explosions occur frequently, and can be large and detailed. Aliens and soldiers are sometimes depicted bursting into small splashes of blood; gibbing effects and small body parts can also be seen strewn on battlefields; and a few cutscenes may depict small pools of blood around characters, or alien blood spurting across the screen. The game also depicts characters smoking cigars or drinking alcohol in cutscenes. Characters use profanity such as "sh*t," "b*tch," and "a*s" in the dialogue.

You can search their database here

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I'd like to add that there is a Reduced Violence toggle in the gameplay options that "When enabled, limits the amount of blood displayed in the game and during cut scenes. Also turns off the damage-specific death animations on Terran units" including the marines. – Pure Pandemonium Nov 9 '10 at 22:36
@Pure: Nice to know! Thanks! – RCIX Nov 10 '10 at 8:19

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