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Balance Update 6

[e][h]Balance Update 6
Patch Information
NA Release Date:
October 15th 2012
Highlights
  • Balance Changes
  • Developer Thoughts
Chronology
 #5
#7 

StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm - Balance Update #6[edit]

Greetings all -

We will be bringing the beta down shortly to make the following balance changes. Thanks again for all the great help you have contributed in testing Swarm; we look forward to receiving more of your input on the changes listed below. Hop in there, play a bunch of games and let us know!

Balance Changes[edit]

PROTOSS
Mothership Core
  • When Purify is cast on a player’s Nexus, it now also grants detection to 13 range.
  • Energize has been removed.
Oracle
  • The cost of Entomb has been lowered from 100 to 75, while the duration has been increased from 50 to 60 seconds.
  • Revelation has been changed to the following:
  • This ability will now also work on buildings, granting 3 vision around every unit it hits.
  • The duration has been increased from 45 seconds to 60 seconds, and the cost has been increased from 50 to 75.
  • This ability will no longer grant detection.
  • This ability will not affect cloaked targets, even if you have detection of them at the time.
  • The button arrangement for this unit has been adjusted to list Void Siphon first and Entomb last.
Tempest
  • This unit’s native bonus damage to massive units has been removed.
  • This unit no longer requires a Fleet Beacon.
  • We have added a new weapon upgrade called Quantic Reactor at the Fleet Beacon which will grant Tempest attacks +35 damage to massive units.
  • Quantic Reactor costs 200/200.
  • The cost of this unit has been changed from 300/300 to 300/200.
  • The supply cost for this unit has changed from 6 to 4.
  • The scale of this unit has been lowered from 1 to 0.9.
Sentry
  • Hallucination no longer requires research.
ZERG
Viper
  • Viper acceleration has been increased from 2.125 to 3.
  • The radius of Blinding Cloud has increased from 1.5 to 2.
Spore Crawler
  • This unit no longer requires an Evolution Chamber.
TERRAN
Widow Mine
  • The setup time for this unit has been increased from 2 seconds to 3 seconds.
Battle Hellion
  • This unit has been renamed to “Hellbat.

Developer Thoughts[edit]

Mothership Core

Energize is mainly an ability that caters to the Oracle, so that Entomb can be cast twice at once, right when the Oracle comes into play. We felt that, rather than having to balance spell casters around this ability, it was better to just balance spells on their own. Energize seemed a bit limited, and on the design side, we felt it was not an interesting spell that has many viable uses.

Widow Mine

We’ve increased the Widow Mine setup time from 2 to 3 seconds. We wanted a change to the Widow Mine that makes it slightly more difficult to use them in combat, but we didn’t want to eliminate this usage. Our current goal for the Widow Mine is for them to be very all-around and usable in many key locations on the map, good on the defense, and good in combination with your army. We think the Widow Mine has great potential as the new core unit for the Terran, and we want to be extra careful in making sure that it remains a powerful option even when players start figuring out how to fight against them.

One issue we’re seeing, however, is all-in rushes using early Widow Mines are a bit too much, so we’re trying a couple of changes for the other races in order to help with this specific area:

Protoss Mothership Core’s Purify ability now also serves as a detector. Spore Crawlers now require Spawning Pool (not the Evolution Chamber).

Oracle

Because Energize is removed, we felt it’s necessary to improve Entomb in order to compensate for their reduced strength.

Revelation has been changed to be more of an army scouting option, due to Mothership Core Purify now being a detector.

Sentry

We’ve been getting a lot of feedback from lower-level Protoss players saying that gateway units are weak because Warp Gates are too good, Force Fields are too difficult to use, etc. We’ve also noticed that scouting in Heart of the Swarm is more important than ever due to new threats out there.

We’re comfortable with the current power level of gateway units and their fit in the Protoss arsenal. It’s not uncommon for mass Zealots or lots of Stalkers to do awesome things. Perhaps Sentries can be a bit difficult to utilize, but this is only because this unit revolves so much around good Force Field usage.

At this time, we feel that removing the research requirement on Hallucination is something we can try in the beta.

Tempest

We’re trying a new direction with the Tempest. With the Fleet Beacon requirement removed, it will be possible to use Tempests as long-range, low-DPS harassers in the mid-game. The counter to Tempests would be to kill the units that are spotting for the Tempest until air units come into play. This is a purely experimental change, so please take some time to play with it and give us your feedback.

Viper

Thanks to a lot of feedback from many of our beta participants, we’ve decided to increase the radius of Blinding Cloud. Please play with and against the new Viper, and let us know how it goes.

Thank you so much for playing the beta and helping us improve Heart of the Swarm. As always, we aren’t trying to solve every single issue and potential issue with this beta patch, and we hope to continue making Heart of the Swarm better and better with each update.