Blizzard recently released an update on the new multiplayer units for Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm, and I have to say, I’m disappointed.
Dey terk our carriers!
As you may recall from the multiplayer announcements at Blizzcon, Blizzard is planning to remove several units in Heart of the Swarm, including the Protoss carrier. This saddened me at the time, but now I’m even more irritated by the decision.
You see, the plan is to replace the carrier with a new capitol ship called the tempest (pictured above). Originally, the tempest was to be an area of effect anti-air unit, which does fill a niche Protoss needed. But since then, phoenixes received a range upgrade and are now much more viable as air superiority units, so the original tempest was no longer needed.
Their solution is to make the tempest a long-ranged, single target siege unit. In other words, it now fills exactly the same niche as the carrier.
Really, Blizz? Why can’t you just fix the carrier if all you’re going to do is give us a new and more boring version of it? It wouldn’t need many tweaks to be a viable unit.
Besides, the carrier is an iconic Protoss unit — the most iconic, if you ask me. It just doesn’t feel like Protoss without, “CARRIER HAS ARRIVED.” It embodies the elegance and power of the Protoss race, and it’s just damn cool.
In other news:
The other updates are equally underwhelming, if less baffling.
The replicant has been scrapped. I’m not surprised, as the ability to duplicate any unit at will would have been impossible to balance, but since this was the only really creative or interesting new unit for Heart of the Swarm, it’s still demoralizing.
The one new Protoss unit that is unchanged is the oracle. It’s still a non-destructive harassment unit designed to piss off your opponent.
On the Terran front, the shredder has also been scrapped, and they may cancel the warhound, as well. New concepts they are considering are aerial spider mines and a long range missile launcher to break siege tank lines in TvT.
The new Zerg units have not changed. The viper and the swarm host are still there, and they’ve decided not to remove the overseer after all. They’re also considering adding more kinds of nydus worms for a variety of functions, such as creep spreading. Yo dawg, I heard you like worms…
Is it just me, or are all these new units, well, boring? Maybe my expectations are too high, but I just can’t bring myself to be excited about any of them.
Admittedly, the new Zerg units look kind of fun, but even they’re not in the “ZOMG MUST HAVE” category — though maybe that’s just because I’m not much of a Zerg fan.
I know they have to be very careful with unit design to ensure a balanced e-sport, but I fear it’s robbed them of ambition. They seem unwilling to try anything new or dramatic.
Oh, well. The campaign still looks awesome, at least.
WhatMMO has posted another of my articles: GW2, TERA, and Secret World: Who Comes Out on Top? This is the article that inspired my last blog on TSW.
Also, Weird Worm has posted another of mine, Six Greatest Simpsons Characters (Not Named Simpson). I think this the last one I wrote for them, but I can’t remember for certain.