After a 12 year wait, Starcraft II Gives you one of the Best RTS games ever
Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty (the first part of a trilogy), picks up where the first game left off; with outlaw Jim Raynor leading the Rebellion against the corrupt emperor who's painted Jim to be a criminal, while having two factions of aliens (The Zerg and the Protos) Breathing down his neck, and if that wasn't enough his girlfriend (Kerrigan) was transformed into the Zerg's new Queen, and he must search for a way to turn her back. The Setup is really complicated, and while you don't necessarily HAVE to have played the first Starcraft, it REALLY helps.
The Graphics look nice on a Powerful machine, (though if you really wanted you can run this game on a single core netbook, i know, i've tried it) With great Laser and explosion effects, and very detailed units (though they all look exactly the same). The game does have that more Cratoonish look Blizzard games have been known for, but the high quality lighting and shadows make it look less so than say, Warcraftt III. The Cutscenes are what really stand out though with very detailed characters and very epic scenes that really show you the size and scale of these units and battles that you can't get from an RTS point of view.
The game also sports some great voice acting, with most of the actors reprising their roles form the first game. The writing and characters are also great with a very diverse cast, and NO ONE is a blatant stereotype. The game also strays away from the "War is awesome we can build 50 bajillion units and nothing bad will happen!!" attitude that a lot of other RTS games (such as the Red Alert series) have, by showing you the real tragedy and horror of war.
The core gameplay is where the game really shines though, and while it hasn't changed much in 12 years, why should it? It's still the basic build a base, gather resources, build units, level the enemy RTS game it's always been, but it's been near perfected here. The games has been balanced to a ti, and no unit is too over-powered or under-powered (say for one or two), the game is very fast too and if you aren't on your toes you can quickly get over-run (ESPECIALLY in Multiplayer).
The Multiplayer is also really more the draw of the game than the Single player, with three factions playable (as opposed to the campaign's one), it's even more amazing how balanced the game is, though a word of warning to newbiews, people take this game to a whole norther level competitively, so i wouldn't just jump in right away, you WILL get owned.
So yes, with an amazing Single player, great Multi player, great graphics, and perfect balance this game truly is as close to perfect as the RTS genre is going to get.