Heart of the Play
Blizzard has released yet another Heart of the Swarm video, this latest one shows off some of the exciting multiplayer improvements that Heart of the Swarm will introduce. Despite the original statement by Blizzard when they first announced StarCraft 2 as a trilogy, it seems Heart of the Swarm will actually bring a great deal of new features for the multiplayer. Most shocking is that Heart of the Swarm will even bring in new multiplayer units, which is completely contrary to what Blizzard had originally stated.
As stated by Blizzard a very long time ago "The stand-alone expansions for StarCraft 2 will only include single-player content, the full multiplayer content will be released with the first StarCraft 2 title"
Regardless of Blizzard's changes to their original development plan, the features that Heart of the Swarm will include are indeed very exciting and I am sure that StarCraft 2 fans can look forward to the expansion with great joy and excitement.
The main features shown in the video at the top of this news post are regarding the way in which players will be able to progress in multiplayer. In Heart of the Swarm, players can now ease in to the multiplayer through Training mode which comes in three stages and is playable as Terran, Zerg and Protoss. The three stages become progressively more challenging and each teach progressively more advanced mechanics. As a first for StarCraft 2, there is now a Versus AI mode, in this mode players can do a 1vs1 against an AI opponent. Additionally, players can also join up with friends and play 2vs2 or 3vs3 versus AI opponents.
The actual multiplayer versus random players online has also been split up into ranked and unranked play. Thus, allowing players to join the unranked play for a less stressful and more fun-orientated play. While those seeking more challenge and wanting to strive for a Ranked rating to show off to the world can still play Ranked mode. Unranked can be played as 1vs1, 2vs2, 3vs3, 4vs4, and FFA. Ranked play can be played as 1vs1, 2vs2, 3vs3, and 4vs4.
The new multiplayer features do not end there; Heart of the Swarm will also receive a new level system for the player account. Each new player starts at level 1 and can level up to 30 by playing any of the matchmaking modes, be it training, versus AI, or proper multiplayer. Each race is levelled separately by playing as that race and by achieving new levels on each race, players can unlock various visual customisation options for that race and its units.