Raven (Legacy of the Void)
- This article covers the current multiplayer version of this unit. For other versions see Raven (Heart of the Swarm) and Raven (Wings of Liberty).
The Raven is a flying support craft with detection. It provides both defensive and offensive capabilities through the use of its abilities. The Raven is the spiritual successor to StarCraft: Brood War's Science Vessel.
Ravens are a useful addition to a mid or late-game Terran army. With detection, a Terran player is able to see both cloaked and burrowed units within the Raven's sight range. Allowing them to cast any of their abilities to stop cloaked foes such as Ghosts, Dark Templar and Burrowed Roach Sorties.
Ravens are equipped with an Build Auto-Turret, which creates an automated defense structure with 6 range (upgradable to 7 range with Hi-Sec Auto Tracking) and lasts for 10 seconds after deploying. The range for the Raven to cast this ability is only 2, so using the Raven as a harassment tool is ill-advised. The Auto-Turret deals 18 damage at 0.57 cooldown which adds up to 31.58 DPS. This combined with the Auto-Turret's 150 HP and base 1 armor (upgradable to 3 with Structure Armor) makes the Auto-Turret a very cost-effective ability against small numbers of units or as additional damage support in an extended fight (such as during a push) due to its tankiness. It can also be used to briefly wall off a ramp as it takes the same amount of space as a supply depot. The Auto-Turrent has 150 HP, upgradable armor and can be deployed on creep. It can deal a maximum of 315 damage during its lifetime, excluding armor.
Raven's second ability is Interference Matrix, this is a long range cast-able missile that disables the enemies abilities and attacks but does not stop movement. The effect lasts for 7.9 seconds and is effective at disabling key units much like BW Ghost's Lockdown. The ability costs 50 energy and is castable at 9 range. The raven will deploy the missile which will then rapidly accelerate towards the enemy, not dodge-able once casted. The ability is most effective when used against units such as Carriers and Mothership or other high priority units (Battlecrusier disables warp and yamato). The ability is also highly effective against the protoss Oracle. The Ability can only be cast against mechanical or psionic units.
The Raven's third ability is Anti-Armor Missile, which functions similar to the old Seeker Missile. The missile immediately fires forward and pursues its target rapidly after it locks on. The missile can be dodged by loading the targeted unit into a structure, such as Command Center or Nydus Worm/Canal, and by teleporting abilities, such as Blink and Recall, though it will still detonate where the targeted unit was before dodging it. The Anti-Armor Missile inflicts 15 splash damage in a manner similar to a siege tank's splash in siege mode, targets closer to the epicenter of the explosion are dealt the full damage while enemies farther out are dealt less. As its name implies, the missile also removes 3 armor on all units within the blast radius. The ability costs 75 energy and is castable at 10 range though its pursuing distance can be extended to 18 range given there is vision (such as through a scanner sweep). Against Zerg the missile if effective at shredding ultralisk based comps as the explosion can cover up to 6-7 closely packed ultralisks. Against Terran the Missile is effective against Battlecruisers and Thors. Against Protoss the missile doesn't affect shield armor so it should be used along with the Ghost EMP round and it is effective against Colossus based armies. The missile only reduced hit point armor and not shield armor
It is important note that while the raven is applicable in many situations, it's fragility, cost and dedicated abilities require the player's attention at all times to allow for a worthwhile investment. The Raven like the Ghost is first-mostly an anti-caster unit.
Ravens are primarily used as mobile detectors in TvP, providing protection from Dark Templar, and allowing the Terran to destroy scouting Observers to limit the information gathering abilities of the opposing Protoss player.
The recent changes to the raven have allowed it to be situationally effective in the mid game to late game of a terran fleet as an anti-capital ship using it's Interference Matrix to disable protoss collossi, high templar, tempests, carriers and even oracles. A single raven can disable up to 4 of these units for 8 seconds, long enough for a bio ball or mech force to re-position and/or kill these important targets.
The Raven's susceptibility to a High Templar's Feedback, limits its uses in TvP to an extent however as while Interference Matrix and Feedback both have 9 range, feedback does not have a travel time so chances it procs and kills the raven first.
Raven TvT use is dictated by the opening builds of the two players, and the amount of gas they consume. They are commonly used to defend against early Banshee harass when paired with a defensive Viking.
Ravens can use Interference Matrix to disable key units in the early mid game such as siege tanks and medivacs (disabling them from healing and dropping off units as well as preventing the use of Ignite Afterburners. Later in the game raven's are useful for their Anti-Armor Missile against large clumps of both mech and bio armies.
Ravens have multiple uses in TvZ. One of the major benefits of Raven usage is its functionality as a mobile Detector. This allows the Terran player to defend properly against burrowed Banelings, Roaches, and Infestors, limiting the damage the Zerg units can cause.
The above example is a dated but applicable tactic that can still be applied to the Raven's new Anti-Armor Missile to force zerg armies to retreat or force a fight into the terran's favour. Higher ranked players have also realize that Interference Matrix is also usable on psionic units such as Overseers and especially the Viper to prevent a Blinding Cloud or Abduct.
Raven's quotes (video and sound) - YouTube video.
|Balance Update 2015-04-09 |
|Patch 3.8.0 |
|Patch 3.14.0 |
|Patch 4.0.0 |
|Patch 4.1.1 Balance Update|
|Patch 4.1.4 Balance Update |
|Patch 4.3.0 Balance Update|
- Heart of the Swarm Balance Update -- April 9, 2015
- Blizzard Entertainment (22 November 2016). "Legacy of the Void - Patch 3.8.0 -- November 22, 2016". Battle.net.
- Blizzard Entertainment (23 May 2017). "Legacy of the Void - Patch 3.14.0 -- May 23, 2017". Battle.net.
- Blizzard Entertainment (14 November 2017). "STARCRAFT II 4.0 PATCH NOTES". Battle.net.
- Blizzard Entertainment (18 December 2017). "STARCRAFT II BALANCE UPDATE – DECEMBER 18, 2017". Battle.net.
- Blizzard Entertainment (29 January 2018). "STARCRAFT II BALANCE UPDATE – JANUARY 29, 2017". Battle.net.
- Blizzard Entertainment (15 May 2018). "STARCRAFT II BALANCE UPDATE – MAY 15, 2018". Battle.net.