A Puzzle Strike player named BT mentioned that he thought Puzzle Strike captures what Starcraft is about better / more elegantly than the Starcraft board game. I thought it was an interesting statement, so I'll explain what he meant.
First, I should say that I have not played the Starcraft board game, but a quick look at it shows that it comes with about a thousand pieces, and looks complicated and long to play. My guess is that it tries hard to capture literally what's going on in the computer game, but that is generally a dangerous approach. Computers are good at keeping track of all sorts of numbers and resources that would be tedious (and yeah, "inelegant") in a physical game. Sorry if my impression of the board game is unfair though, I stress again that I have not played it, but BT said this is part of what he meant.
Meanwhile in Puzzle Strike, you have choices that basically amount to "expand," "tech," and "army."
In Starcraft, you ideally would like to invest as much as possible in your economy, as a way of being weaker now but very strong later. In Puzzle Strike, this means spending your money to buy more gem chips for your deck. Gem chips basically are money, so buying them will make your economy much stronger later, but at the expense of not building "tech" or "army" now. In both games, you have to keep an eye on how much the opponent is threatening you with his army to know how much you can safely invest in your own economy.
In Starcraft, investing in tech gives you the potential to do powerful things. For example, building a Templar Archives gives you the ability to build High Templars and researching Psionic Storm gives your Templars access to that powerful spell. In Puzzle Strike, the analog is buying what players call "engine chips." These are chips that all work together to produce powerful combinations. For example, chips that give you more actions and chips that let you spend those actions drawing more chips. Building an engine in your deck is sort of like teching up in Starcraft, as it gives you access to powerful turns, but it's not the "tech" itself that wins--that's what your army is for.
In Starcraft, your army is your set of attack and support units. It's your army--not your economy and not your tech buildings--that actually apply force to the enemy and win the game for you. In Puzzle Strike, your "army" is your set of purple chips, the ones capable of combining gems in your gem pile and crashing them so they leave your pile and go to your enemy's. Filling up his gem pile to 10 is how you win, so these purple chips are what allow you to directly attack the enemy and to defend against his purple assaults.
Putting it all together
It would be nice if you could just sit back and build economy, but if you take too long to build any tech or army, you're going to lose before you get to use all that money. Having just a bit of army early can let you hold off incoming attacks long enough to let your economy kick in. How much tech and when to build it is also a hard question. It's possible to completely overwhelm other players if you build a solid tech engine, but you could very well be overwhelmed by an opponent's army while you're trying to get that together.
Asymmetry, Build Orders, and Maps
In addition to the expand vs. tech. vs army concept, Puzzle Strike also has asymmetric starts (3 races in Starcraft; 10 characters in Puzzle Strike) and it has the concept of build orders and maps. A build order in Starcraft is a combination of moves that results in a certain level of expansion / tech / army and a certain composition and timing of that army. Doing a Zealot / Stalker rush is a very different build than putting up some static defense and going for air units like Void Rays. Likewise, trying to clog up everyone's deck with useless wound chips while yours stays tight and efficient is a very different "build" than a draw engine or a mono-purple rush.
In Starcraft, your choice of builds depends partly on the map you're playing on. While any given map allows for many viable builds, some builds become stronger or weaker--or even possible / not possible--on certain maps. In Puzzle Strike, the "map" is set of bank chips you can buy for your deck in the current game. There are 24 types of these chips total, but each "map" consists of a set of 10 of these, so that there are millions of possible starting conditions. Your build depends a lot on which of the millions of possible maps you're playing on.
Puzzle Strike certainly isn't the same game as Starcraft, and I'm sure you can easily think of differences, but BT's point is that it's striking how many core similarities there are. None of it was even intentional except for the inspiration of using 4-gems to fill a similar role to Protoss Carriers that I mentioned in this article. Anyway, I hope you enjoy the game, it's got a lot of really interesting dynamics.