Archive for June, 2011

SC2 Season 3

Everyone currrently playing Starcraft 2 competitively should be rather excited as the new season is here. With it comes arefreshed map pool.

From the official blizzard website:

Along with a new season of ladder play, we continue to update and refresh the map pools, with the goal of providing a fresh and invigorating set of challenges for StarCraft II players of all stripes. With the start of Season 3, you’ll find a number of new maps to explore and master:

The 1v1 ladder map pool

Our goal for the 1v1 ladder map pool is to have the most competitive, balanced maps across three main categories. We want to have a good mix of maps that give a lot of variety which, in combination with our veto system, should empower each player to customize their map list to best fit their individual playstyle.

The 2v2 ladder map pool

In 2v2, we’re trying to go with mostly maps where you and your ally have a shared choke point to defend. At higher levels of 2v2, there are clearly team compositions that are stronger than others on open maps. We’re hoping to address this balance issue through map layout, since this is only a 2v2-specific issue.

The 3v3 and 4v4 ladder map pools

Looking at the statistics, we’re seeing that the higher level players rarely play these formats. Therefore, we’ve decided to go with a bit more of a casual-player-friendly selection of formats. We want to provide a good mix of fortress style maps, as well as rush maps, to cater to the broad player base here. Our goal for these two formats is for players to be able to enjoy variety in the gameplay, rather than trying to provide an eSports level of game balance.

If you notice from the site all of the maps are called test. Do play them and give Blizz your feedback!

Heart of the Swarm Trailers

The last time we had news about Heart of the Swarm was when there was a mysterious video proof of what seemed to be a leaked ending of heart of the swarm chocked full with spoilers. Needless to say, don’t watch it if you don’t want to be spoiled. What we have now though is real official trailers from Blizzard for their next expansion!

It might take you a while to stream from the official blizzard servers and the websites though, so you might want to use youtube links at the bottom if the blizzard stream is too slow for you. The links to youtube are provided below

The two trailers that blizzard has released deals with different aspects; one is a cinematic style teaser trailer showing you high definition footages, the other is a gameplay trailer showing you what has changed and what hasn’t from the first game.

For the movie like trailer, what you see at the start is ghost and more ghosts chasing after another ghost. Nova which you would have seen from Starcraft 2 and heard from the abandoned game project, is likely under orders from arcturus mengsk to chase down the new now human form once ghost Sarah Kerrigan.

Naturally Jim Raynor is not too far from the action and once again you see his trademark yelling after kerrigan scenes. In my humble opinion however kerrigan looked much better before she was zergified. Her converted form has zerg tendril-like hair.

As for the other trailer that deals with the gameplay, it really is pretty much the same old with some new cosmetic changes. Instead of being onboard Jim’s Battlecruiser in Starcraft 2, the expansion has you joining Kerrigan on her journey to regain her powers and retake control of the zerg horde. So instead of the researcher to guide you down the tech tree or the mechanic at the forge, you have two unique zerg creatures taking over those roles. From the trailer it looks like you can also give Sarah Kerrigan herself upgrades, and it appears she takes a more active role in the individual campaign missions than Jim Raynor did in the first game. While there will be new units, new tech and new abilities the expansion looks pretty much the same in terms of game mechanics as the old!

The Trailers here: