UC Berkeley Offering a StarCraft Class

Starcraft, Blizzard's heralded RTS title, now has a place in the classroom.

After nearly 11 years and millions of fans, StarCraft is going beyond the casual and competitive gaming scenes and heading...to the classroom? The University of California in Berkeley is doing just that. Offered by a Professor Feng, the class may sound like the road to an easy A, but do not be fooled.

According to the course description, students will "go in-depth in the theory of how war is conducted within the confines of the game Starcraft." The course also recommends that its students be familiar with Calculus and Differential Equations. Also, "the class will take the theoretical into the practical world by analyzing games and replays to reinforce decision-making skills and advanced Starcraft theory."

So what does the professor want you to get out of the class? "...we want you to think more deeply about the game to derive a greater satisfaction from playing. Furthermore, this understanding should have applications in real life...students will be applying critical thinking, quick decision-making, and game theory skills throughout the sessions. Students will also learn what to look for in a replay or game to learn most effectively." From looking at the class' official website, homework includes recording demos of matches for in-class analysis.

The official site says the class will initially seat up to 60 students, but that number could expand to 120. For those who are not UC Berkeley students, Feng says he will attempt to upload his lectures in the coming weeks. It should also be noted that the StarCraft class is a DECAL class. The Democratic Education at Cal is a student organization whose objective is to "provide support for student facilitators," or allowing students to suggest and operate their own classes. So while the class is indeed real, you won't find it as part of a particular departments class offerings.

Perhaps the biggest advantage of this class is the price; instead of spending hundreds of dollars on books, students need only buy a StarCraft Battle Chest at Best Buy for $14.99. I would say this is one of the strangest college courses I've ever heard of, but the pornography class at Providence University in Taiwan still takes the cake.

Also, you can find the class Facebook group here.