Fan-built remake of Warcraft 2's Horde campaign launches as Chronicles of the Second War: Tides of Darkness

Warcraft Chronicles of the Second War statue
(Image credit: Lorecraft Designs / Blizzard Entertainment)

What you need to know

  • A team of game designers named Lorecraft Designs have been working on a mod for Warcraft 2 for the past couple of years. 
  • Working in the engine of Warcraft 3: Reforged, Lorecraft Designs have built a remake of the Horde campaign from Warcraft 2: Tides of Darkness. 
  • The mod is titled Chronicles of the Second War: Tides of Darkness and includes cinematics, voice acting, and more. 
  • Chronicles of the Second War: Tides of Darkness requires users to own a copy of Warcraft 3: Reforged before playing. 

If you're longing to explore the adventures of Blizzard Entertainment's early strategy title days again, there's good news. 

Lorecraft Designs, a modding team of game designers, have been working to remake Warcraft 2: Tides of Darkness for the past few years under the title Chronicles of the Second War. Building within the engine of Warcraft 3: Reforged, the Horde campaign is now here with the launch of Chronicles of the Second War: Tides of Darkness. You can check out the trailer for the mod below:

Chronicles of the Second War: Tides of Darkness requires players to own a copy of Warcraft 3: Reforged in order to play it, but if you own a copy, you can experience a rebuilt version of the Orc campaign with new voice acting, a remastered soundtrack, and much more. 

Warcraft 2: Tides of Darkness was developed by Blizzard Entertainment and released for MS-DOS and Mac back in 1995. Critically acclaimed and commercially successful, the game was firmly in the pre-HD era of strategy titles, though it would heavily influence Blizzard's work on its next real-time strategy game, StarCraft.

Heroes of the Storm is also seeing a fan-led revival effort

Warcraft 2 isn't the only game from Blizzard Entertainment's library that's being remastered under fan efforts, with a team working on recreating Heroes of the Storm within StarCraft 2. This free-to-play mod, titled Resurgence of the Storm, is available now with two maps and a variety of heroes like Diablo to choose from. The team is working on more, but has noted that due to limitations of the engine, not everything from Heroes of the Storm can be recreated exactly as it was. 

Analysis: Fun passion projects that keep the fire going

I always love learning about fan projects to mod or build an older game using a more modern engine. As some games get older and older, compatibility with modern hardware sometimes gets weird, and graphics or gameplay systems will inevitably feel outdated as technology marches on. Fan efforts to rebuild or remaster games like Warcraft 2 can provide a fun experience for new players or someone who has been there from the beginning. 

On the development side, these modding teams are also a great way to learn about game design, and some of the people who work on these projects can even go on to be hired by studios as full-time employees.

I'll be keeping an eye on both Chronicles of the Second War and Resurgence of the Storm moving forward. As Activision Blizzard was recently acquired by Microsoft, it'll be interesting to see if Blizzard takes the opportunity of having a bit more freedom to look to some of these fan projects for inspiration, and perhaps even return to working on in-house strategy games at some point? Hey, we can hope. 

Samuel Tolbert
Freelance Writer

Samuel Tolbert is a freelance writer covering gaming news, previews, reviews, interviews and different aspects of the gaming industry, specifically focusing on Xbox and PC gaming on Windows Central. You can find him on Twitter @SamuelTolbert.