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The tauren marine was an April Fool's joke pulled off by Blizzard Entertainment, and a common easter egg in the StarCraft II games. It was portrayed as a terran unit in StarCraft II. The tauren marine stems from the race of tauren in StarCraft's counterpart Warcraft universe.
In the old Terran Confederacy, marines were mostly criminals or rebels who had undergone mandatory neural resocialization. Freed from any previous allegiances or ideologies, these fearless soldiers stood ready to defend Confederate interests with their lives but exhibited an annoying tendency toward petty larceny, vandalism, and occasional cannibalism. Confederate authorities were unable to requisition enough reliable troopers in this way, and eventually recruiters turned to a new source of fresh meat for the grinder.
The obscure planet of Azeroth was found to harbor a dizzying selection of humans, mutants, and aliens in a state of perpetual superstition and conflict. The most physically imposing of these warrior races were the so-called "tauren," an anthropomorphic bovine genotype with super-human stamina, overpowered racial combat abilities, and bizarrely well-developed horticultural skills.
While most tauren were satisfied with their agrarian culture and primitive existence, the Confederacy was able to lure away large numbers of young bulls for a life of adventure and violence along the galactic rim. Other tauren referred to these adventurers as 'mad cows,' and they were ostracized from the rest of their kin. The newly created tauren marines didn't care--they got neat-looking armor and big guns to own everyone else with. These beefy new soldiers became an integral part of the Confederate military, and have managed to horn in on the roles traditionally filled by firebats and other infantry units.
They are often seen with another type of alien creatures called murloks. It is unknown whether they are mercenaries or mascots. Given that the murlok is seen with a blaster, it is possible that the murloks are indeed mercenaries.
Following the defeat of Amon in the End War, many tauren marines settled back into their peaceful, hunter-gatherer ways. They regularly celebrated the season of life, giving rewards to all who would celebrate with them.
The tauren marine appeared as an uncontrollable easter egg in the Wings of Liberty mission Zero Hour and was otherwise only usable through the map editor. It disappears into an outhouse. Selecting the outhouse several times will cause it to lift off.
One is controllable by the player in the mission Templar's Charge in Legacy of the Void. If the player moves the platform in the directions Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, and Right from the initial starting location, and presses the now-visible "Do not push" button on the command card, his drop pod will fall down into a nuclear blast, killing any units on the platform, where a radiation symbol can be seen indicating the ground zero. He will appear in the nuclear blast, and has the same stats as his map editor version. This script can only be activated once in each campaign.
Tauren marines turn slowly while attacking and fire explosive rounds. They have the same stimpack ability as terran marines, though it's unresearched in Templar's Charge. Most of their quotes consist of puns.
The following section contains information from a previous version of StarCraft II which is no longer valid.
The idea for tauren marines stemmed from a piece of promotional artwork by Samwise Didier for the band Level 80 Elite Tauren Chieftain. This sparked the interest of Phill Gonzales and he began modelling a tauren marine unit in his free time. He was given permission to use it for an April Fool's joke, and things took off from there.
Tauren marines were trained from the mulgore, taking on the role of shock troops. In a video of them on the official StarCraft II website, they displayed splash damage, and a group of five of them were seen completely devastating a small terran base.
Seen in the April 2008 video, they have a different set of less enthusiastic and punny quotes compared to the modern version.
Heroes of the Storm
The tauren marine appears in a television commercial in StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty story mode.
The tauren marine is available as a player portrait for those that bought the StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty Collector's Edition.
Known Tauren Marines
- StarCraft II: Tauren Marine. Accessed on 2008-01-04
- StarCraft II: Noble Garden Celebration. Accessed on 2017-03-21
- Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Mission: Wings of Liberty, Zero Hour (in English). 2010-07-27.
- Tauren Marine Easter Egg. Youtube. Accessed 2015-11-07.
- 2010, Starcraft 2: Tauren Space Marine. Deviantart, accessed on 2011-07-20
- Blizzard Entertainment. Heroes of the Storm (Blizzard Entertainment) (in English). June 2, 2015
- StarCraft Legacy staff. 2010-10-22. BlizzCon 2010 StarCraft II Custom Maps and Editor Panel. StarCraft Legacy. Accessed 2010-10-23.
- Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Mission: Wings of Liberty, Piercing the Shroud (in English). 2010-07-27.
- Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. General newscasts, post-A Sinister Turn (in English). 2010.