A lot of things to get to on here. Since a lot of info has come out about the campaign mechanics here’s a small listing.
The main change is the role of Kerrigan as a hero unit that will be used in most missions. Blizzard gives her a feeling of massive power due to her higher stats, unique spells, and a new RPG feature. You can choose a “Battle Focus” that determines her statistics, spells, and passive boosts and level up your Kerrigan.
Battle Focuses can be changed between missions, and they are thinking about allowing it mid mission as well. So far there are 4 shown and only two were available. Spec Ops is more spell oriented, giving you a AoE attack, a boost to your energy, and a hallucination of herself that can deal half damage. Corruption is defense based giving extra armor. For commands it gives you Spawn Broodling, which turns the targeted non massive/hero unit into 5 broodlings and instantly kills it. Corrosive Spores is another AoE attack that grants temporary damage increases from all attackers against the targets as well as damaging them.
The last two Battle Focuses have nothing shown. Since the 4 core attributes shown are Energy, Armor, Strength, and HP are shown, it’s likely that Strength will give passive boosts to damage and close range abilities while HP will probably be designed with HP boosts and spells to heal and protect Kerrigan from damage.
The other most interesting thing revealed is how regular units in your army will be more customizable. Wings of Liberty allowed you to get Tech Lab upgrades and unique to the campaign upgrades that would be kept from mission to mission. Heart of The Swarm seems to have that same feature for the Zerg Units using the Evolution Chamber. However, the truly interesting this is that you will be able to evolve each unit. Zerglings can turn into Swarmlings (Spawn 3 Zerglings at a time instead of 2) or Raptors (which get a 10 HP boost and a Zealot Charge like leap onto nearby enemies). These effects are permanent like the Research Path in Wings of Liberty and must be chosen carefully. Below are the list of known units.
Spawns 3 Zerglings at a time instead of 2 at no additional cost.
Leap at nearby enemies and gain 10 additional HP.
A special Baneling that’s explosion splits it into two smaller units. Those smaller units have the same attack but the splitting ability stops after the smaller ones explode.
Buildings destroyed by them are turned into collectable resources.
Basically the Roach with the Tunneling Claws ability, Prowlers currently can move while burrowed.
Gain +10 life per kill (up to 6 times) and gain more HP regeneration while burrowed.
The gameplay video above also shows of some of the first two missions. “War For The Brood” takes place on Char and pits Kerrigan against a Brood Mother who denies her right to be Queen of Blades. “Silence Their Cries” takes place on a world making use of the hidden Iceworld tileset from Wings of Liberty. Kerrigan seeks out another Brood Mother but ends up fighting against the Protoss. This mission has a environment mechanic like in Devil’s Playground from Wings of Liberty with the lava, except in this case you see units being slowly frozen and thawed from the world’s dangerous weather.
Anyhow, here are the results from last month’s poll. I have to disagree with the majority as I enjoyed Starjeweled more than Left 2 Die. Aiur Chef being last doesn’t surprise me, but if you haven’t played that yet you should try it just to hear the voice acting’s hilarity.
Which is your favorite Blizzard Custom Map?
- Left 2 Die (56%)
- StarJeweled (33%)
- Aiur Chef (11%)
Total Votes: 35
This month’s poll asks whether or not you will be picking up a copy of Heart of The Swarm when it comes out, and if so whether or not you get the Collector’s Edition.