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StarCraft Wiki
This article is about the game. For the novels, see StarCraft: Ghost: Nova, StarCraft: Ghost Academy and StarCraft: Ghost: Spectres.
StarCraft Ghost Logo2
This article or section contains information about StarCraft: Ghost, which has been declared non-canon. Elements may be taken as 'flavor lore' however.
The content may be significantly out of date. Please do not add speculation to this article, and remember to cite a published source for details.

StarCraft: Ghost was a tactical action game for video game consoles, announced on September 19, 2002, under development by Blizzard Entertainment and Nihilistic Software.[2] Development later shifted to Swingin' Ape Studios,[3] which Blizzard eventually bought.[4] The game was based in the StarCraft universe.

Blizzard, known for computer games, took a step in a different direction by developing it exclusively for the Xbox and PlayStation 2 video game consoles. A GameCube version was also planned, but it was cancelled in November 2005.[5] The development of the primary version of Ghost was infamously delayed and plagued with issues, becoming one of the most famous examples of vaporware.[6] In February 2014, a functional gameplay prototype from the Tokyo Game Show was released on the internet from an early Nihilistic build. This build contained the first two sets of levels for the game, as well as gameplay and story data.[7] Later that year, Blizzard CEO Michael Morhaime listed the game as one of several cancelled projects.[8]


SC-G Cover1

Preliminary cover of StarCraft: Ghost

Ghost's gameplay centered around a single-player campaign, in which the player controlled Nova, a ghost agent. The game was stealth-based, meaning Nova would frequently stealthily approach objectives, using darkness, shadows and cloaking to avoid detection. However, the opponents could sometimes use decloaking devices to detect her. In addition, opponents who couldn't see her would still try to hunt her down if they detected her in some way.[8]

The player would need to solve simple puzzles in some parts of the game in order to bypass security "locks." For instance, in order to bypass zerg security, Nova must match her psi energy with the system code, and the player must work out color wave patterns to simulate this.[9]

Nova was capable of a wide variety of combat moves, including climbing and sliding down ziplines.[8] Nova can use techniques such as "dangle snipe" (in which she hangs from a pipe with her legs and snipes an opponent)[10] and also make instant stealth kill attacks[11] in a mini-game in which the player uses different button combinations against different opponents. Nova can even kill an opponent by forcing a grenade into an opponent's helmet and then sealing it shut.[12]

In addition, a variety of vehicles played a role in the game, some of which could be directly controlled by the player;[13] Nova could direct other vehicles to strike enemy targets.[9]

Nova was typically equipped with an AGR-14 assault rifle and a sniper rifle,[14] but could carry a variety of other weapons[15] and grenades.[12] She sometimes used the psyblade, a melee weapon designed using protoss technology.[16]

Nova has powerful psionic abilities, including cloaking, psionic sight (which enables her to see heat signatures through walls) and psionic speed (which quadruples her speed).[17]

Multiplayer Modes

In multiplayer mode, players could play (as terrans) light infantry, marines, firebats and ghosts.[18] They could drive or fly vultures, stingers, siege tanks and Grizzlies.[19] As zerg, they could play zerglings, hydralisks, infested marines and mutalisks.[20]

Several multiplayer game modes were available, such as Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, King of the Hill and Capture the Base.[21]

Mobile Conflict

MarSaraMobileConflict SC-G Art1

Mar Sara Mobile Conflict map

Capture the Base, also known as Mobile Conflict, involves two teams of up to eight players trying to capture a mobile factory and bring it to their own side using infantry units, which can fight inside it;[22][21] they would be dropped off using Grizzlies.[19][21] The battle takes place on Mar Sara.[23]


HeliosInvasion SC-G Art1

Helios Invasion Map

Another game mode was Invasion, in which players attempted to take control of resource nodes for points, gaining more powerful units which could be used to destroy the enemy base.[22] Points can be gained for killing enemy units.[24] Taking control of an unoccupied node requires a player unit to remain near the point until a control meter fills up. If the node has already been occupied, the panel controlling it must first be destroyed.[25]

The bases are connected by a web of these interconnected nodes. Each node must be captured in turn, which enables dead characters to respawn at a point closer to the front line.[24]

This game mode includes a minimap.[24]

Players start as the lowest ranking unit on each side; light infantry for terrans and zerglings for the zerg. Gaining access to higher ranking units requires an expenditure of points: a marine costs two points, a firebat costs three and a ghost costs the most at five, while a hydralisk costs one point, an infested marine costs two points and a mutalisk costs the most at five. Respawning takes 0 points.[25]

At least one Invasion Mode scenario would take place on Helios over a khaydarin crystal.[26]

New and changed units

For StarCraft: Ghost in-game unit quotations see: StarCraft: Ghost Unit Quotations.


Player Units:

Unit Name Description
Light Infantry Light infantry are security guards found in various terran installations, they are equipped with lighter armor than marines.[27] They can produce gun turrets and decloaking devices.[18]
Marine In addition to their standard issue C-14 "Impaler" Gauss rifle, marines can now carry flak pistols and grenades.[18]
Firebat In addition to their standard issue Perdition plasma-based flamethrower, firebats can fire napalm rockets, of the guided or unguided variety.[18]
Ghost Ghosts will wield an assault rifle/grenade-launcher combination as their standard weapon. The AGR-14 rifle is less powerful than the C-14 "Impaler" gauss rifle. This weapon is different from the original C-10 canister rifle. In addition, ghosts can use the BOSUN FN92 sniper rifle (which is, again, different from their long-ranged canister rifle from StarCraft), a special lockdown device,[18] and the psyblade (a psionic melee weapon developed using protoss technology).[16]

Player Vehicles:

TerrVehicles SC-G BlizzCon2005

Terran vehicles in StarCraft : Ghost.

Grizzly SC-G Game1

Terran Grizzly bomber

Unit Name Description
Grizzly The Grizzly is a fighter-bomber which carries passengers.[28]
Siege Tank Equipped with plasma cannons.[19]
Stinger This six-wheeled terran jeep fills a role in between that of the vulture and the siege tank. It has a crew of two and is equipped with a heavy assault cannon.[29]
Vulture The vulture is armed with a powerful laser[30] or grenade launcher.[19]
Goliath The Goliath serves as a vehicle Nova can drive in the first few levels of the game. In early builds, it would serve as a boss of the second chapter.

Non-Player Units:

Unit Name Description
Spectre The result of genetic experiments conducted on ghosts using terrazine gas.[31]
Seeker droid These small robots prowl installations. They can reveal a cloaked ghost to other units.[32]
Mini Science Vessel Miniature science vessels that can detect Nova while she is cloaked and alert guards to her presence.[7]


Player Units:

Unit Name Description
Zergling Virtually unchanged from StarCraft, has a bloodlust ability.[20]
Hydralisk Also virtually unchanged, but now has a melee attack.[20]
Infested Marine Capable of firing poisonous rounds from an "infested" gauss rifle, in addition to its suicidal explosion ability and a claw attack.[20]
Mutalisk Fires a bio-plasma attack and can pick up ground units to drain them of life.[20]

Non-Player Units:

Unit Name Description
Infested Terran
Infested Scientist
Infested SCV pilot
Overlord Can be targeted by irradiate. Some have been locked into tanks.
Lurker In early builds, serves as a boss of the 4th set of missions.
Scourge They can be found resting in groups by hanging from Creep-covered ceilings, but will swoop down to attack if disturbed.
Mini Cerebrate When destroyed, would send all zerg around it into a frenzy.


Vindicator SC-G Game1

Protoss vindicator

Unit Name Description
Vindicator Also known as the purifier,[33] little is known about this unit. It carries a single, large "lightning gun" on its arm. The vindicator does not move while firing the ranged weapon.[34]
High Templar
Dark Templar


Blizzard declared the storyline of the unreleased game non-canon in 2012.[35]


NovaTerra SC-G Game1

The game's login screen

The story was supposed to take place four years after the Brood War.[31] However, this appears to have been retconned to 2503.[36]

Emperor Arcturus Mengsk has rebuilt much of the Terran Dominion and built up a new military, despite having to worry about the zerg.[31] Smaller factions have been taking this opportunity to seize power while larger factions are otherwise distracted.[37]

Mengsk and his new adviser, General Horace Warfield, have begun a secret project codenamed "Shadow Blade".[31] The project uses protoss technology.[37] The program uses terrazine gas to alter the genetic makeup of ghosts. These ghosts are transformed into spectres – shadowy superhuman beings bent on executing the will of their true master.[31]

In addition, a Blizzard panel at BlizzCon 2005 revealed that Kerrigan was massing her forces on Char and was strong enough to "crush the entire sector", Mengsk rebuilt the Dominion military with robotics and stolen protoss technology and has retaken a number of worlds, while Artanis was trying to merge the two groups of protoss, made more difficult because many Dark Templar hate the protoss who had banished them from Aiur.[38]

The main character of the game is Nova, a terran ghost (psionic espionage agent) in the employment of the Terran Dominion squadron, Nova Squadron,[39] working for Colonel Jackson Hauler in his ghost squad.[40] She used to be a member of the Confederate Old Families, but has since undergone a memory wipe.[41][39]

Nova is about to embark upon a perilous mission to uncover the frightening truth behind Project: Shadow Blade – this conspiracy will cause her to question her own identity while embroiled in a struggle between the Terran Dominion and the rebel Koprulu Liberation Front.[31] She was expected to have to make a choice between her loyalties to Jackson Hauler and to Arcturus Mengsk.[42]


The opening video shows a group of Terran Dominion marines (and a few firebats) assaulting a zerg-infested "vespene" refinery[43] (actually a terrazine refinery)[44] on Mar Sara. Captain Buck leads the group, but is incompetent and refuses to listen to Lieutenant Haggs' suggestion to scout the area first, and when HQ says it will send three dropships with reinforcements, one with a black ops unit, Bock tries to cancel the order. Bock's forces promptly fall into a zerg ambush. He pleads for reinforcements, which arrive in the form of the dropships, one of which is carrying Nova and a black ops team. Two of the dropships are shot down by mutalisks but the third safely lands, disgorging the black ops unit and Nova.[43]

Storyline Notes

StarCraft: Ghost "had a killer plot and a really good bad guy," according to Blizzard Entertainment. It was unrelated to the main storyline of StarCraft.[45]

Robert Clotworthy was hired to voice act for Jim Raynor in the game.[46] Other characters connected to the major protoss and zerg plotlines were not projected to play a role in the game.[45]

Nihilistic Story
For StarCraft: Ghost campaign quotations see: StarCraft: Ghost Campaign Quotations.

A full build of Nihilistic Studio's version of StarCraft: Ghost leaked in February 2020. It contained notes describing the story of the early builds of the game, though it was changed at many points during development:

The story begins with the explosion of Borgo Refinery on Mar Sara, which attracted a massive swarm of zerg to the planet. Ghost agent Nova is sent to investigate by Colonel Jackson Hauler of Omega Squadron, and finds the refinery leaking a gas called terrazine. Investigating further, she discovered the root of the attack was from a rebel group named the Koprulu Liberation Front under Cole Hickson, who made off with some of the terrazine. However, zerg attacks increased, and Nova had to help the forces of General Horace Warfield push the zerg forces from Mar Sara. After fighting through their lines, Nova was sent to hunt down Hickson.

She arrived on Vyctor 5 at the KLF fortress at Pinnacle Base. Nova infiltrated the base, discovering the KLF working on experiments with the terrazine and the zerg. Fighting through their forces and a Goliath walker, she eventually confronted Hickson, who told her there was more to what Hauler was doing with the terrazine that he was trying to stop. Reading his mind, Nova realized he was telling the truth, but tried to bring him in. He trapped Nova in stasis, but let her live.

Nova broke out, and confronted Hauler, who commented she should be mind wiped. A tech commented the terrazine she had been given may be making her resistant to them, but she was successfully wiped anyway. Hauler then deployed Nova on an new assignment: defend a "Dominion intelligence operation" on Aiur.

On Aiur, Khalai forces were pushing back the Dominion forces, ad Nova supported them as she disabled their shields, pylons, cannons and arbiters. She was followed by a group of Nerazim from the shadows, and at some point was forced to kill one named Tanagazj. After Nova defeated the protoss, she was confronted by a strange psionic terran named Artemis, and the two fought. As Nova was winning, Hauler directed a nuke to her position. Nova was wounded but alive, and taken by the Nerazim who shadowed her.

Aboard their ship, the Void Seeker, Nova recovered. With her neural implant fried by the nuke, she began to regain her memories. The leader of the Nerazim introduced him as Zangakkar of the Sari'jal Tribe, who sought to bring balance to the universe and revered the terrazine. He told her she had been secretly undergoing terrazine treatments that would kill her in 20 hours, and that Hauler was using terrazine to make an army of super powerful psionics named spectres. Nova agreed he had to be stopped, and Zangakkar took her to the zerg world of Char, where Hauler was mining a terrazine pocket. There the KLF were attacking his operation.

Nova and the Sari'jal infiltrated through the zerg nydus canal network, and fought a lurker, soon arriving at Hauler's mining operation. She rescued Hickson, who was the only survivor of their attack on the base, and confronted a cybernetic spectre named Vulcan. Two of the Sari'jal protoss aiding Nova merged into a dark archon, and with its help she was able to kill Vulcan.

Nova and Hickson followed the shipments of terrazine on Char to Hauler's asteroid base of Gehenna Station. Using one of his ships and Hickson's codes, Nova and the Sari'jal infiltrated the base, defeating the spectre Aries and destroying Hauler's spectre pods. Nova found a decontamination chamber that could purge the terrazine from her system, but was forced to fight and kill the spectre Artemis to reach it. Zangakkar detonated the terrazine in the base, causing the station to begin to self destruct.

Nova and Zangakkar confronted Hauler, who had heavily mutated himself into a hulking monstrosity. Hauler mortally wounded Zangakkar, but Nova was able to defeat him. Before he died, Hauler launched the remaining spectre pods, and Nova swore if any escaped she would hunt them down. Zangakkar gave Nova his psi blade, and said he hoped she would find peace and balance, before dying. Nova escaped with Hickson aboard a dropship, and the game ends as the two fly off into space.[7]


The following missions were taken from a leaked Nihilistic build. Builds in the game [7] Later information suggests that the mission locations and story was drastically changed as development went on.

Mission 0
  • 0-0: Strike Team
Mission 1
  • 1-1: Ghost Training
  • 1-2 A: Scattered Forces (A, C)
  • 1-2 B: Zergling Rush
  • 1-2 B: Canyon Advance
  • 1-3 A: The Borgo Refinery
  • 1-3 B: Sabotage
  • 1-3 C: Nuclear Launch
Mission 2
  • 2-1: The Fujita Pinnacle (A, B, C)
  • 2-1 A: Pinnacle Hangar
  • 2-2: Deadly Experiments (A, B)
  • 2-3 A: In Pursuit of Terrazine
  • 2-3 B: Goliath Boss
Mission 3
  • 3-1: In the Path of the Titans (A, B, C)
  • 3-2: Sacred Ground
  • 3-3 A: Khaydarin Core
  • 3-3 B: Arbiter Tribunal
  • 3-4: Artemis Boss
Mission 4
  • 4-1: Shadow Hunters
  • 4-2: The Way of the Warrior
  • 4-3 A: Terrazine Mining (A, B, C)
  • 4-3 B: The Path of Shadow
  • 4-4: Vulcan Boss (also labeled "Retribution")
Mission 5
Mission 6
  • 6: Hauler Boss (also labeled "Balance")
Mission 7

The following appear under mission set 7, but have objectives that mirror missions in the original StarCraft.

Data for the Jacobs Installation mission has the objective string "Rescue Zeratul," indicating that "Into the Darkness" may also have been planned as a playable map.

Characters of StarCraft: Ghost

Characters SC-G Art1

Character montage





Planets Visited in StarCraft: Ghost

Later Builds

A protoss starship would also be infiltrated in one mission.[55]

Nihilistic Build



"The first direction was about that question, "what if you were in the middle of a StarCraft battle? Also, Metal Gear Solid was out. Splinter Cell wasn't too far away. So we felt like it was going to be a good fit."

Ghost has its origins in the late 90s/early 2000s. The PlayStation 2 and Xbox had launched, and in 1998, Blizzard, who desired to enter the console market, had released the original StarCraft to positive reception. It was in this context that the idea for Ghost was pitched to Blizzard by Nihilistic Software. Exactly who came up with the idea for Ghost is unknown, but according to Robert Huebner, Nihilistic had been greatly influenced by the rise of stealth games in the late 90s. They presented their idea to Blizzard, based on the concept of players taking control of a ghost, but as a player on the battlefield rather than from a god's-eye view. A demo was pitched that involved a character in a trench along with zerglings coming overhead. The demo included siege tanks and an air strike. Bill Roper could see Nihilistic's passion for the project, but Blizzard itself had its hands full with its own projects, as in the early 2000s, much of its staff was working on Diablo II. The two companies struck a development deal whereby Nihilistic would contribute the main work on the game and Blizzard would guide development with constant feedback. Blizzard would also provide cinematics. No specific deadline was given to Nihilistic.[55]

Course of Development


"Blizzard knew it was an iterative project and the whole success over there had been about taking your time. It was like, 'every month we'll pay you and you give us what we ask for. It was too good to be true, and we thought it was the best thing ever. It provided us security for the team, and gave us time to ramp up. But the dark side was that if it kept going and going and can be trying to work on something for a long time and not see it shipped."

- A Nihilistic employee(src)

Nihilistic began development on Ghost in 2001.[2] Ideas were pitched to have the game focus on being a terran marine or even as Sarah Kerrigan, either as a ghost or in her Queen of Blades persona,[56] but it was eventually settled that the game could center around a ghost named Nova.[57] Nihilistic aimed to release the game for the Xbox, PlayStation 2 and Nintendo GameCube consoles in late 2003.[58] The team put a lot of effort into making the character, and by extension, the player, feel as though they were in control of a ghost. Abilities like cloaking and swift movement would make the player feel like a combat veteran, and the power to call down nukes (as in the original game) would provide a feeling of battlefield domination. The plot in this stage of development underwent numerous revisions, but it was quickly agreed upon that Nova would encounter enemies from all three of the first game's playable races.[55] Playable builds of the game existed within a few months after starting development.[59]

However, at some point, development began to go awry. Interviews conducted with Nihilistic staff members have demonstrated that this exact point can't be agreed upon, but according to Huebner, trouble began when regular meetings with Blizzard became more about adding new features and experimenting and less about perfecting an established idea. The game's open-ended development timeline allowed for lengthy debates and significant iteration to occur without the team making progress toward a shippable title. When Splinter Cell was released in 2002, Huebner noticed that some of Blizzard's feedback was mirroring the features contained in the game. Metal Gear was likewise an influence. Furthermore, Ghost suffered from a number of producer changes, which meant that no one person at Blizzard was responsible for the entire life of the project. This also made the Nihilistic developers feel as though Blizzard wasn't making Ghost a priority, as large gaps between feedback was occurring. Another change was that while Ghost had started off as a stealth title, Blizzard was demanding more action in the game. The stealth-action spectrum wavered over feedback, and the question of multiplayer was brought up. Nihilistic delivered demos quickly, but this led to very different feedback from Blizzard's "strike teams" as the game's style (stealth or action) differed between builds. When James Goddard was hired as a consultant, he pushed the game towards the action end of the spectrum, which, in Huebner's mind, was to the game's detriment. Goddard's appointment, among other decisions, contributed to the cumulative feeling at Nihilistic that no one at Blizzard took the project under their wing. Among team members, there was a collective feeling that Rob Pardo provided much-needed guidance and specific feedback before Goddard came on board, but this didn't last long.[55]

During the summer of 2002, the entire Nihilistic Software development team quit en masse.[60] Following the resignations, Blizzard reassured their customers that there was nothing to worry about, that Nihilistic Software had merely finished the job they were hired for, that there were no power struggles inside the company and that the game will be delivered on time.[61] A playable build of the game was revealed at the 2002 Tokyo Game Show. At this point in time, Blizzard was still introducing new features rather than polishing existing elements of the game. By this point, Splinter Cell had become an established franchise, and Blizzard pushed Nihilistic to lift elements from the IP. Reportedly, at this point in time, Nihilistic was divided evenly as to how the game should play. One half, along with Blizzard, was pushing for a more action-orientated game, while the other half wanted to keep Ghost as a stealth game, keeping in with the original concept. Bill Roper has noted that the constant back and forth of development was taking its toll on Nihilistic's staff, also noting that presentations would use both Metal Gear and Halo as points of inspiration. Roper has further noted that Nihilistic was simply following Blizzard's direction, but could never reach the desired balance between action and stealth.[59]

After the Tokyo Game Show, the art style was changed, a multiplayer mode was implemented, and a team co-op multiplayer was "being chased." However, the game was entering a point where Blizzard was starting to feel that it wasn't shippable, either (in Huebner's view) due to lack of resources or too many decision-makers. A Nihilistic staff member has claimed that the story had undergone numerous rewrites, which exacerbated the development issues.

In 2003 and '04, the issues came to a head. No progress was being made, and Nihilistic was looking for a partnership with Electronic Arts. The levels were playable, but felt cobbled together from different games. By 2004, according to David Paul, the game was in a shippable state, but had a lot of missing content. That same year, a meeting occurred between Nihilistic and Blizzard. According to Huebner, both sides felt that production needed to wrap up. At some point afterwards, Nihilistic ceased work on the game.[55]

Swingin' Ape

"Swingin' Ape did a really good job, and the game was really going somewhere and really impressive. The gameplay was good. The shooting was good...and when they got multiplayer working and you're playing multi-console and jumping on speeders? That was just, holy shit."

According to Goddard, when Nihilistic ceased work on Ghost, Blizzard considered the project was in good enough shape to hand off to another studio.[55] In July, 2004, Blizzard Entertainment employed Swingin' Ape Studios to work on the game,[3] almost immediately after Nihilistic ceased development. According to sources, when Swingin' Ape took over, development became less stressful, and feedback became more streamlined and consistent. While Nihilistic had introduced some multiplayer elements, there had been pushback due to team members feeling it was moving away from their original vision. With Swingin' Ape, according to Goddard, the multiplayer could be given more attention. Reportedly, Swingin' Ape moved to make the game "its own," repairing what it saw as being broken in Nihilistic's version of the game.[55] Blizzard bought Swingin' Ape outright in May, 2005.[4] However, Swingin' Ape still worked in their own facilities, separate from Blizzard. However, Matthew Bell has since claimed that under Swingin' Ape, Blizzard was making Ghost a priority. Feedback was carried out directly, and a cinematic was released at BlizzCon 2005.[55] However, the Gamecube version was canceled in the same year.[5] Reportedly, the 2005 build elicited generally positive feedback, though some Nihilstic members have mentioned that they felt resentment to the more action-focused game Ghost had become, rather than the stealth game they had originally conceived.[55]

There was also the issue that World of Warcraft had launched in 2004, and by 2005, had over a million players. Consequently, staff had to be diverted from other teams to maintain the game, Swingin' Ape included. Furthermore, Ghost had begun life at the start of one console generation, but by 2005, the next console generation was about to be launched with the Xbox 360.[55] During the summer of 2006, Blizzard announced that StarCraft: Ghost would be indefinitely postponed while they examined the capabilities of the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Wii systems.[62] According to Goddard, Blizzard was faced with the question of whether to devote even more resources to Ghost to make it ready for the new console generation, or shelve the game and possibly return to it at a later date. Bell has further commented that Ghost had been designed for consoles, but Blizzard was seeing such success on the PC that pursuing a console game no longer seemed an essential proposition.[55]

Blizzard eventually decided not to continue producing the game, as it was in internal competition with World of Warcraft and StarCraft II.[63][62] Reportedly, Blizzard gave the development team the option to continue development and to bring Ghost to the current console generation. However, Bell has expressed doubts that if this had been pursued, it might not have been completed, as so many different projects (World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, and the new iteration of Diablo III) would mean that the Ghost team would struggle to get things done.[55] Eventually Blizzard chose not to continue the game because they didn't believe it could succeed.[63] It was supposedly 6 months away from completion at the time of its cancellation.[64] The development team was dissolved, and assigned to other projects within Blizzard.[55]

The Aftermath

"The project had its own problems from the very start, and Blizzard wasn't set up as a publishing company, but they have their own culture. And they kind of had to break through that cultural barrier. As for me, well, I'm no fan of working with external developers either!"

Blizzard employee Rob Pardo suggested that Ghost had failed but could be brought back;[65] Blizzard has explained that the game was never announced as canceled or dead[66] and it is simply focusing on other games.[67]

At the World Wide Invitational 2008 Rob Pardo has suggested that the game was a "miss" and so was canceled.[68] The console division appears to have been canceled; Blizzard has no plans to reopen it and as of August 2008, no-one is working on it and it wasn't even on the radar,[69] Blizzard having its hands full with other projects.[70] In July 2008 the Guardian newspaper reported that Blizzard had quietly shelved StarCraft: Ghost due to the economy.[71] At BlizzCon 2008 Mike Morhaime said that StarCraft: Ghost was losing resources in competition to World of Warcraft, StarCraft II and Diablo III, and Blizzard decided that "now is not the right time" for StarCraft: Ghost.[72] At BlizzCon 2009 Chris Metzen said Ghost would "rest in peace".[73] However, Michael Morhaime also suggested it could return when a team becomes available.[74] By 2011, he stated that the game had fallen into a position where it could not succeed.[63] Occasionally the development team behind the game has been talked to, as to whether the project could be finished.[75]

In 2011, Blizzard confirmed that StarCraft: Ghost was not in development for financial reasons.[76] The lack of development remained true in 2012—the game has no development team, and was not discussed, though according to Dustin Browder, it was not impossible that the game could be resuscitated at some point in the future.[77]

At PAX East 2013, Blizzard employee Matthew Burger stated that the project was on hold, had never been canceled, and did not rule out the game being released one day.[78]

In an interview explaining the cancellation of Titan in 2014, Mike Morhaime described StarCraft: Ghost as canceled.[79]

The game was described as being "indefinitely postponed" in 2015.[6] As of BlizzCon 2015, there are no plans to continue the game, and Team 1 remains focused on StarCraft RTS games.[80]

Assets from the game, such as interior installation art, were used in StarCraft II.[81]

In 2016, an expose by games journalist Patrick Stafford featured interviews from Nihilistic, Swingin' Ape, and Blizzard staff members, detailing the history of the game's development.[55]

In 2018, an article by games journalist Jason Schreier touched on the issue of Ghost, that it and Project Titan had contributed to Blizzard's current policy of not commenting on unannounced games and keeping development on said game secret.[82]

In 2017, Blizzard began development of a new StarCraft first person shooter codenamed Ares. Though previously unannounced, in June 2019 it was announced the game was canceled. Media outlets made parallels to Ghost as the project suffered a similar fate.[83]

In 2020, a build from Nihilistic Studio's version of the game was leaked online, containing several working levels, models for the majority of the units and characters, and an outline of how the story was to progress.[7]


Licensed Fiction

SC-Ghost-Nova Nov Cover1

Nova—the first novel in the Ghost sub-series

StarCraft: Ghost Lore Products
StarCraft: Ghost: Nova
StarCraft: Frontline: Weapon of War
StarCraft: Frontline: War-Torn
StarCraft: Frontline: Orientation
StarCraft: Ghost Academy
StarCraft OGN
StarCraft: Ghost: Spectres

StarCraft: Ghost can be considered to form a sub-series of its own in the realm of tie-in StarCraft fiction, with novels and manga designated as such. According to James Waugh, the story is split into a "meta-tale" involving a long series of products.[84]

StarCraft: Ghost: Nova, a Keith R. A. DeCandido-authored novel and the prequel to StarCraft: Ghost, was published after development on StarCraft: Ghost was put on hiatus. It was intended to be published alongside the game (and its release was delayed in an attempt to ensure this).[85] Focusing on Nova's backstory, the novel's plotline largely took place during the Great War.[41]

Several stories in the StarCraft: Frontline series featuring Colin Phash[86] were linked to the graphic novel series, StarCraft: Ghost Academy. Ghost Academy is based on the adventures of Nova during her training at the Ghost Academy,[87] taking place at the end of StarCraft: Ghost: Nova.[88]

The StarCraft OGN was to be part of the subseries, but was itself placed on indefinite hold.[84]

Plot elements of the StarCraft: Ghost storyline were revealed in a novel entitled StarCraft: Ghost: Spectres.[88] In it, Agent Nova is sent to investigate incidents of ghosts being kidnapped.[89]

Nova was given her own game in the StarCraft II mission pack Nova Covert Ops. Elements of Ghost's story, such as the disappearance of ghosts, and Nova leaving the command of the Dominion, were mirrored in this mission pack, though the story itself is largely different.[90]

StarCraft: Ghost in StarCraft II

Nova SC2 SMS1

Nova on a Hyperion TV screen

Elements of Ghost's featured in StarCraft II. Gabriel Tosh, a character from the subfranchise, appeared on the Hyperion in Wings of Liberty and served as a connection between the two storylines.[91] The storyline of Ghost, especially parts revolving around the Terran Dominion, acted as a building block for StarCraft II.[92] Horace Warfield also returned, albeit with a redesigned appearance and backstory.[93]

GabrielToshMissons SC2 Icon1
This article or section contains information from the optional Covert Missions in StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty.

As revealed through optional missions offered by Tosh, Project Shadow Blade, led by Gabriel Tosh, had rebelled against the Terran Dominion, but many of its spectres were captured and put into New Folsom Prison at the hands of Agent Nova.[94]

Tosh hired Raynor's Raiders to collect materials needed to create spectres: jorium and terrazine.[95][96]

Nova SC2 Head1

Nova in StarCraft II

However, his secretiveness worried Jim Raynor. Tosh tried to hire him for a final task, a raid on New Folsom Prison. However, Nova contacted Raynor, telling him that Tosh and his spectres were psychotic, and he should help her shut down Tosh's spectre-making operations on Avernus Station. Raynor could choose to either help Tosh or Nova.[94]


In February 2009 China banned StarCraft: Ghost's name as an e-sports brand due to issues involving "superstition".[97]


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This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at StarCraft: Ghost

The list of authors can be seen in the page history of StarCraft: Ghost.

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