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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

StarCraft II Source Exclusive Q & A

This is an exclusive Starcraft 2 Source (fansite) Q&A
Blizzard will now take your questions:

1. Are you still developing new units or are you satisfied with the amount of units for each race and, therefore, more concerned about the fine tuning and balancing?
Our philosophy has always been to keep the amount of units for each race to a certain number to keep the gameplay tight, and we are satisfied with what we have right now in terms of that number. Once we head into beta we definitely evaluate the role of each unit and will potentially add or drop units as needed based on feedback.

2. Can you explain the movements of big melee units like the Ultralisk in detail? While running through idle units smaller units tend to move away so the Ultralisk can walk in a straight line. Will that happen only in battles or while moving your whole army as well?
The way movement collision works right now is that a unit has to be idle for it to be pushed to a new location by another unit like an Ultralisk. Generally if you are controlling your forces and they are active, you will not see this behavior.

3. In the campaign of StarCraft II, there are many optional objectives to do so that the player can choose how to play through the campaign. But there are players who want to see every cinematic and play every mission. Are there missions where you have to decide, which way you go (e.g. the Terran campaign in StarCraft I, where you decide to choose nuclear weapons or Battlecruisers), or will the player be able to play the whole campaign in a linear progression? Will there be a menu were you can replay already completed missions? If so, can you also unlock new missions in that menu?
As you play through the campaign, there will be a few cases where you must make a distinct choice that could change the outcome of a certain side plot or the fate of a specific character. These choices will be made very obvious to players, and for those who want to see all the possibilities, you’ll have the ability to go back and choose the other path. We will also have a way for you to replay completed missions or cinematic cut scenes via the story mode interface as well.

4. In the single player campaign of Warcraft III, even races like the Naga are playable temporarily. Is something like that planned for StarCraft II too?
The single player campaign for StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty will focus on the Terran campaign, but there will also be a short series of missions where players take the role of Zeratul and other Protoss forces.

5. Is the range of the stalker’s blink ability limited to the distance between him and the target area or are cliffs and trees considered; so a stalker could blink farther when he’s blinking down a cliff than if he’s blinking up the cliff?
The distance you blink is the same regardless of blinking up or down a cliff.

6. Will players be able to send resources to their allies? If so, will there be a limit to the amount of resources they are able to send?
Yes, players can send and request resources among teammates but only after a few minutes into the game. The reason for this is to minimize imbalances that could be created by one player getting a massive early economic boost from his or her partner dumping resources at the outset of the game. There currently is no limit to how many resources you can share.

7. Some replays were not compatible with new patches in StarCraft I. Are you working on making replays compatible with new patches for StarCraft II?
Yes, we’re working on allowing replays from previous versions of StarCraft II be compatible with new patches as they are released.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

SC2 Q&A Batch 54

---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 54 ---

[SC2 Forum]
1. Does the Zergling vs. Zealot ratio remain at 4:1 or has it changed in the latest builds?
One zealot can usually take out two, and sometimes three zerglings. However, the ratio is mainly based on positioning and micro-controlling. As the number of zealots grows, it will take more zerglings to win the fight since the zealots can clump up and reduce the attacking surface area. Smart use of terrain, such as a choke or backing up against a wall, will also help a protoss player reduce this attack area. Zerglings have to secure a good surround around the zealots to keep the ratio close.

[SC Legacy]
2. In World of Warcraft pvp they found an issue over time that it was "very unsatisfying" to the player when they lost control of their character as it limited their ability to do their job or role. There is a noticeable increase in stuns and immobilization in Starcraft 2, which was barely present in Starcraft 1. From your experience in testing, do you feel abilities, which limit unit control, provide more dynamic game play so far or are you noticing more concern?
First of all, there were actually some abilities in the original StarCraft that could cause players to lose control of units. These abilities include the ghost’s lockdown, the corsair’s disruption web, and the dark archon’s mind control. It may be premature to suggest at this point that there’s a “noticeable increase” in stuns and immobilization in StarCraft II.
To address the comparison anyway, in World of Warcraft, you control a single character, unlike RTS games where you manage multiple units and bases. The difference in the World of Warcraft is when you lose control of your character you simply have to wait it out, assuming you don’t have any control breaks. However in StarCraft, when units in your army are being controlled, you can still issue orders to the rest of your army, manage your base, build new units, etc. There are a lot of options and we happy with the diversity it brings to gameplay at this point.

3. What is the current status of the Mothership? What niche does it fill at this time, and if the unit were removed, would there be a reason to fill that niche with a different unit or would protoss still be fine?
Currently the mothership has a passive cloaking field for nearby units and buildings, wormhole transit, temporal rift, and vortex as its abilities. We are happy with the state of the mothership at this time, and would like to hear feedback from the players once beta starts.

4. What is your overall goal for the Infestor? The units have had and removed so many abilities, are you trying to focus into a support role, or disruption and harassment, or just to have a wide variety of spells so it can be a quick response unit?
It is intended to play more of the disruption/harassment role. They are meant to burrow and move up ahead of the swarm to soften up their opponent’s forces.

5. Is EMP dodgeable, or there's some sort of indication that it's going to be launched? And does this cause a problem with Immortals?
It’s possible to dodge EMP, but it is difficult to do. Your options include anticipating your opponent will be casting an EMP by seeing the ghost or its shimmer and predicting it; being near the edge of the EMP range and moving out quickly; or using the stalker’s blink ability.

[Vile Gaming]
6. Map/mod to site communication – Will there be support for map/mod makers to bridge a connection between their map/mod to their site? For example, if a person wanted their map/mod to submit scores/results to the site, and vice-versa the map/mod could pull the highest scores from the site and display it in the game.
It is possible for players to make their own custom score screens but there are no specific plans to bridge map data to web sites via

7. Launcher support – Will maps/mods be able to have their own "launcher" (ala WoW’s launcher), as in shortcut or start icon from the computer outside of StarCraft, and have their own screens, after a authenticating screen (ala Twitter’s, or Facebook’s, application authentication).
There are no plans to allow maps and mods to have their own launcher. However, making a loading screen or launch screen is still possible.

SC2 Q&A Batch 53

Hope everyone has enjoyed all the BlizzCon news and got a chance at our Twitter beta key giveaway! Everything has settled here in the office after various shows and events we've been at, but we are back in the swing of things. If you haven't been following us on Twitter, don't forget to do so too, as we will consistently be adding more spotlights, development info, and fun contests on there as we approach beta and throughout the development of StarCraft II.

Check us out here:

---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 53 ---

1. Computer AI – Does the computer’s online AI vary from its offline counterpart?
No. They are the same.

2. Have you considered allowing a post-game lobby for users to discuss the last game, collectively watch replays, or immediately enter into a rematch?
Yes, we have a plan for a post game lobby. However the details are not finalized yet.

3. Is there any update on additional map features other than the Xel’Naga watch towers, destructible rocks and tall grass?
No. Currently there is no update on additional map features.

4. How many different voice actors are needed for StarCraft II, including the unit sounds and campaign heroes?
There are 58 unique voice actors participating, with some voicing multiple roles, and the number may increase as the game gets closer to release.

5. The terrain types in StarCraft II we have seen so far had names like “Bel’Shir (Jungle)”. Does this mean that “Bel’Shir” is just an alias for jungle and every terrain is just named after a typical planet using it or are there – to stick with this example – other jungle maps with a different terrain set, something like “Aiur (Jungle)”?
We named our terrain sets based on the planets. There are a lot more terrain sets than in the original StarCraft and you will have huge flexibility in modifying the terrain sets (including adjusting textures, doodads, lighting) allowing you to create your own variations of the default maps. There may be other jungle-themed default maps named after other planets.

6. Will there be any chance to have more options on pausing the game? In StarCraft: Brood War every player can pause the game three times, but every other player can unpause it. How about a (user editable) time limit before other players can unpause the game?
We recommend that players communicate with each other in the game to agree on when to pause and unpause during the game. We feel that pausing the game interrupts the game flow and it would be inconvenient for players to be forced to wait for a certain amount of time before being able to unpause. The pausing feature is mainly meant to allow for pausing of the game when all players are in agreement and for which duration.

7. I already knew the map editor would be available to beta testers a while after Beta was released, but this is why I’m asking the bland question, will it also be available to non-participating people?
No, the map editor will only be available during the beta for beta testers.

8. When a unit comes out from a building will there be only 4 exits from the building like in Warcraft 3 or will there be “infinite”?
It is not infinite, but your units will come out from a building at the closest point on the building to where your rally point is set.

---End of Transmission---

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Starcraft2 delayed by Activision Blizzard to 2010

Starcraft 2 will be delayed for another year.

Here's the official statement from the Activision Investor Details:
(released on

"As we prepare for next year, we have moved the expected release dates for two games, Activision Publishing's Singularity and Blizzard Entertainment's StarCraft II, into 2010. However, we are increasing our calendar year earnings-per-share GAAP outlook and reaffirming our calendar year earnings-per-share non-GAAP outlook and still expect to deliver record non-GAAP operating margins. Although there is a great deal of economic uncertainty in the global marketplace, we remain focused on the opportunities afforded by our industry and will continue exploring potential new markets and business models that should enable us to continue expanding our operating margins," Kotick added.
So that means, you will be getting your hands on this sci-fi RTS on 2010 (probably longer.)
It doesn't really matter though. As long as the game is as good as we expect it to be, the wait for Starcraft Two will be worth it.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Starcraft 2 No Lan Support

This is one of the most shocking developments for Blizzard's upcoming title "STACRAFT 2"
They said that this decision would try to combat piracy.

No more LAN for Starcraft 2 means no more Starcraft 2 LAN parties.
Blizzard Entertainment has more to lose than gain by announcing that there would be no multiplayer LAN support.

Other people say that Blizzard has become greedy by forcing people to play on BattleNet 2.0 which has potential ad revenue. Others say it's just a marketing ploy to create controversy over the much awaited Starcraft 2.

Either way, here's the official statement released on the matter:

"We don't currently plan to support LAN play with StarCraft II, as we are building to be the ideal destination for multiplayer gaming with StarCraft II and future Blizzard Entertainment games. While this was a difficult decision for us, we felt that moving away from LAN play and directing players to our upgraded service was the best option to ensure a quality multiplayer experience with StarCraft II and safeguard against piracy. Several features like advanced communication options, achievements, stat-tracking, and more, require players to be connected to the service, so we're encouraging everyone to use as much as possible to get the most out of StarCraft II. We're looking forward to sharing more details about and online functionality for StarCraft II in the near future."
What can you say about this? Do you support Blizzard's move to take away LAN capabilities?

Monday, June 15, 2009

SC2 Q&A Batch 52

For all up and coming STARCRAFT mapmakers, here's some stuff for all of you.

StarCraft II Q&A Batch 52 : Map Maker Series

1. Does it still use the JASS language, or perhaps an upgraded version of JASS?
StarCraft II uses an entirely new scripting language, which we’ve called Galaxy. This language is very similar to C, and anyone familiar with programming in C will have no trouble picking it up.

2. Is the language event-driven or object-oriented?
The language itself is not object-oriented, although most of the native functionality is based around operating on game objects.

3. In comparison to the Warcraft III Editor, how much more, if any, can the GUI of the game be edited (it was extremely limited in Warcraft III)?
The in-game UI layout is externalized in data files to a large extent, however there is no editor support for working with these files. So it will be possible to customize the game UI, it just won't be a user-friendly process.

4. Are there new noteworthy functionalities in the Starcraft II Editor, or will the new editor just have general improvements?
I can’t think of a single editor feature from WarCraft III, large or small, which has not been improved in at least some way for StarCraft II.

5. Will the ability to communicate among triggers, for instance via actions or conditions, be improved in the new language?
One significant new feature of the Trigger Editor is support for custom function definitions, including actions and conditions. This means you can create your own actions that are built up from other actions (or custom script code), then use those in triggers just as you would any other action.

6. How does "Hero" support differ from the Warcraft III Editor? Or is it practically identical?
We’ve been working hard to create a hero system that is even more flexible than WarCraft III’s. For example, map makers will have the ability to define any number of custom attributes that modify a hero based on its level.

7. Will there be a public API for the programming language?
As with WarCraft III, there is a large set of “native” functions representing game functionality that can be accessed through scripts. If this is what you mean by “public API”, then yes.

8. Will there be improvements on the "Garbage Collector" for the new language? For example, in JASS all local variables need to be set to null at the end of their use, and certain data-types need to be removed from the game (such as Locations) at the end of their use to avoid memory leaks.
Galaxy features a robust garbage collection system for all native types, which is a huge improvement over WarCraft III (which technically did not have a garbage collection system at all). The script memory leak issues from WarCraft III will be a thing of the past.

---End of Transmission---

SC2 Q&A Batch 51

51 is here.
Can't wait now for the new STARCRAFT2 release.

---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 51 ---

1. Add an option in the menu to disable the windows key, and same thing goes for ALT-TAB?

And add an EASY way to squelch your opponent. When their name “IllIIlIIlIIlI​IlllI” (L & i), it's a little difficult. While we are not considering disabling the windows key and Alt+Tab, we are looking into the naming policy to prevent problems like the one you described .

2. StarCraft 2's terrain properties such as Xel'Naga towers, destroyable barriers and Brush have a significant effect on gameplay and appear to create specific points of interest/advantage on the map. Are there plans to introduce additional terrain buffs/effect to the battlefield?

The current terrain features are not finalized. We still have these three map features in the game and we plan to keep them during the beta, but it is always possible to add more features if we find something that’s balanced and encourages exciting game play.

3. Since there are/were plans to integrate voice communications into multiplayer, will StarCraft 2 replays be able to include Audio, as well as chat?

Replay files do not include audio. However you will be able to see all text chats while you are watching replay.

4. You have talked a bit about replay functions lately and since patches will come up definitely former replays won’t work if the system sticks with SC1 or W3. Do you plan on making changes here so that players can view older replays ever after patches occur?

Yes, even as the game gets patched, you will be able to watch replays of matches played on older versions.

5. The interface we see in Battle Reports – is this interface available for Observers during a live game (in real time), or only while viewing replays, or both?

The interface you’ve seen in Battle Reports will be available in observer mode as well as in replays during beta.

6. StarCraft II is a package consisting of single player/campaign, multiplayer (+replay viewer), map editor and All four are complex and without a doubt require testing and patching. Has it been decided which of the above components are planned to be included in public beta testing?

You can have multiplayer game access through during the beta and you can watch the replays as well. There will also be access to the Map Editor during the beta process but not necessarily from the start. Single player campaign will not be included in the beta.

---End of Transmission---

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

SC2 Q&A Batch 50

Ladies and gentlemen, here is Starcraft 2 Question and Answer Batch 50 talking about Replays.

StarCraft II from its conception has been designed to be an eSport and one of the backbone features to helping players learn more about their own gameplay as well as their opponents is through replays.

---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 50---

1. Overlord can be upgraded to carry units, and spawn creep, and Overseer can detect, spawn changeling, and has a longer line of sight. Why not just have the Overlord upgraded with these abilities, rather than have him transform? – Mooiki (Lordaeron)

We want each race’s detection ability to be well balanced. We don’t want to see every Overlord with detection after upgrading the ability once at Lair. Separating detection capability into two units creates important choices for Zerg players, to ensure their army has enough support of each type available.

2. Any support for stereoscopic play? - Ylleks (Azeroth)

Stereoscopic vision can be an interesting feature, as we’ve seen with the recently added support in World of Warcraft and other games. For now however, the team is concentrating on the core aspects of StarCraft II and making sure the core features of the game that will be used by everyone are as good as can be. Later on down the road we can evaluate more features like this and see if they make sense to support in StarCraft II.

3. At previous events with playable StarCraft II stations we often saw players doing classic Brood War build orders and tactics. Taking all the new things into account, how far do you get with playing just like in Brood War? Is it a clear disadvantage or a good way to start? -

It will depend on the player’s play type and creativity. The experience and skills from the original StarCraft will definitely help players get familiar with StarCraft II. However, there are a lot more units, abilities, and buildings in StarCraft II than the original StarCraft. Players can always start out playing in the way that they used to play in the original StarCraft. As they grow more comfortable with the game they can begin exploring the new units and abilities and discover lots of new strategies. It’s not a matter of advantage or disadvantage, it depends more on the players’ play styles and preferences.

4. Will it be possible to use characters to colour ingame text like in SC1? –

No, currently there is no in-game colored text support. Colored text was a neat trick in the original game, but we wanted to ensure that all in-game communication is clear and easily-readable, so we’re only supporting default text style.

5. In the single player, you said we can choose from the missions and the way we want to go forward. Will it be like we definitely will play all the missions and we can choose the order, or does it mean that probably we will miss some missions? – StarCraft II Hungary

In most cases, you’ll be able to go back and explore a mission branch that you skipped earlier in the campaign, so you can experience almost all of the missions in a single play-through of the campaign. There may be a couple of rare cases where a choice you make closes off a mission, however.

6. Will campaign decisions in the Terran portion affect campaign outcomes/branches in the Zerg and Protoss portions? - TheWarCenter

We looked into this possibility, but after some debate, we decided it was most important that each campaign delivers a self-contained, yet epic storyline. Giving each campaign a single start and ending was the best way to ensure a coherent plot.

7. In the original StarCraft, you could make the Lurker (through bug use), while burrowed, hold fire until told to attack, something which led to many exciting situations. Are there any plans to include a “hold fire” command for the Lurker in SC2? In addition, worker units lacked Hold and Patrol commands in SC, will this be the case in SC2 as well? – Team Liquid (Zanric)

There is no hold fire command for Lurker in the current build. However we will look into every possibility that encourages more tactical, exciting gameplay and keeps the game balanced.

---End of Transmission---

Thursday, February 19, 2009

SC2 Q&A Batch 49

The Starcraft II Q&A Batch 49 is here.
Starcraft 2 Questions and Answers right back at you.
Join as we become part of history as we cover the latest Starcraft 2 news.
SC2 is now going Starcraft 2 beta if you did not now.

Without much further ado, the Starcraft 2 archives Batch 49

1) I am very curious... previously, SCVs, Drones, Probes, Vultures, Archons, and Dark Archons hovered above the ground so they were not hit by mines. My question is simple: Are there any hovering units in Starcraft 2? If there are, can they hover over shallow water? -Ancientdefender (

If Spider Mines stay in the game, then there will be hovering units. Shallow waters are currently just a visual effect and will not ‘play’ differently.

2) How does the Mutalisk attack work in StarCraft II, what defines its bouncing pattern? Is it random or not? If not, what is the criteria that defines how it bounces? -Kain175 (

Regardless of the position of the Mutalisk, when its attack hits a target, it will then acquire the next target based on proximity to the first target. The attack will always bounce to the next closest target.

3) Is it possible to toggle off Multiple Building Selection (MBS)?

4) Balancing of 2v2 team play: Roaches + Medivac are too over powered for 2v2 team play unit combinations?

The regeneration rate of the Roaches and the healing of the Medivac will not stack upon each other.

5) What is a good counter for Zerg against Marines, which are upgraded from the original StarCraft?

Zerg actually have a few options that are quite effective. Zerglings can catch Marines out in the open and surround them relatively easily. Secondly, Banelings with the burrow ability are also very effective. There is nothing more gratifying than watching a group of Marines walk over a burrowed Baneling. When it unburrows – BOOM! Another counter that can be used are Roaches with burrow. A player can burrow a Roach at low health for it to regenerate back to full health in seconds, at which point it can unburrow and begin attacking the Marines again.

In late game, Infestor’s with their fungal scourge ability, which causes a biological unit to take damage over time until the unit explodes and does an area of effect damage, decimating groups of Marines easily if the opponent is not fast to react. Additionally, Ultralisks with their new cleave attack as well as 200 more hit points from the original StarCraft also make them an excellent counter to massed Marines.

6) How do you keep the Baneling from exploding on targets that you don’t want them to hit?

The Baneling now has an ‘attack building’ ability now which allows players to have more control over what the Baneling attacks. Players no longer need to worry about Banelings accidentally exploding on a building when they actually wanted it to hit a unit.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

UC Berkeley Starcraft Decal Syllabus

To those curious people who want to know what the Starcraft subject in college is all about, presents the UC Berkeley Starcraft class syllabus.


Course Facilitator: Alan Feng (

Units: 2 units, Pass/No Pass, CECs by email

Time and Place:
Thursdays 7-9pm at Haas C230
Lab/Discussion (Optional): 12pm – 5pm 1st floor of Moffitt Library

Course Description:
UC Berkeley students with an interest in real-time strategy games and the competitive gaming landscape are encouraged to participate in this class.
This course will go in-depth in the theory of how war is conducted within the confines of the game Starcraft. There will be lecture on various aspects of the game, from the viewpoint of pure theory to the more computational aspects of how exactly battles are conducted. Calculus and Differential Equations are highly recommended for full understanding of the course. Furthermore, the class will take the theoretical into the practical world by analyzing games and replays to reinforce decision-making skills and advanced Starcraft theory.
Class will start with lecture and usually include a special discussion topic having to do with the day’s lecture to inspire new and original thought. At the end of lecture, there may be time to analyze student-submitted replays to illustrate a point or to improve analysis. Homework will be assigned at the end of each class and is due at the beginning of each lecture.

Course Learning Objectives and Goals:
What may look like complex topics are just ways we want you to think more deeply about the game to derive a greater satisfaction from playing. Furthermore, this understanding should have applications in real life, to further synthesize new information from limited inferences. The primary goal is for students to learn, enjoy the art of competitive StarCraft, and have fun. Overall, students will be applying critical thinking, quick decision-making, and game theory skills throughout the sessions. Students will also learn what to look for in a replay or game to learn most effectively.

Students should be familiar with all units and some basic StarCraft strategy. All students should of course enter the class with an open and analytic mind.
Starcraft: Brood War

Other Reading:
The Theory of Starcraft by Alan Feng
The Art of War by Sun Tzu
Crazy as Me by Lim Yo Hwan

Attendance and Participation:
All absences must be excused (you should inform the course facilitators no later than the Friday before) and more than two absences will result in a grade of “No Pass.” Please note that you will not be able to make up any work you missed during class and that new material will build on previous weeks’ instruction. Furthermore, there will be several pop quizzes graded based on completion given in class at a random time, and these will contribute to your participation score as well. It is also expected that students participate by asking questions and voicing their analytical suggestions during the instruction, and by practicing with others.

Course Workload:
Each week, students must submit 2 replays of games they played and are willing to analyze in depth. Students are expected to explain the flow of the game, identify the time of several positive and negative moves, and show an understanding of how to overcome mistakes in these replays. Some replays will be reviewed by the class together. These replays must be emailed to with this subject title: First Name, Last Name, Week #. Submissions without that subject title will not be guaranteed to be filtered into the correct folder, and hence, we cannot guarantee that it will be graded. Grading for these replays will be on a credit/nocredit basis. In addition to submitting replays, there will periodically be homework assigned online due in class the following week.

(Tentative) Course Outline:
Week 1: Orientation / Competitive Gaming Industry Overview
Week 2: Units, Strength, Weakness, Attributes, Stats
Week 3: Fighting Micro and Unit Use
Week 4: Army Movement and Positioning
Week 5: Expo and Macro
Week 6: Building Placement and Base Layout
Week 7: Scouting and Counters
Week 8: Harass
Week 9: Overloading the Enemy, Multi-plays
Week 10: Economic Basis, Micro vs Macro
Week 11: Timing and Evaluation of Resources
Week 12: Deception
Week 13: Mindset and Series Play
Week 14: Tournament

Grading Breakdown:
Final Project: 40%
Replay submissions and other homework: 40%
Attendance, Participation, and Quizzes: 20%

Final Project:
There will be a final project where students will present and explain their contribution to the Starcraft Community. This may take the form of an essay detailing new theory or calculations, or an in-depth analysis of a significant game. Whichever final project is chosen will be displayed or published on a public forum for peer criticism.

There you have it. Hope nobody fails Starcraft class.Wanna get in?
Enroll yourself at the University of California Berkeley.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Starcraft 2 Valentines Day Wallpapers

The guys over at Blizzard have something in store for Valentines day.
They have released STARCRAFT2 Valentines Day themed wallpapers!

Here are the goodies for all you lovebirds out there:

You are always on my overmind - Zerg

My Life For Aiur. My Love for you. - Protoss

Hell, It's About Valentine - Terran

Click on these images to download the 800 x 600 wallpapers.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

SC2 Q&A Batch 48

StarCraft II Q&A - Batch 48

Ladies and gentlemen, Starcraft 2 Q&A Batch 48

Here's the Chat with Devs: The new year is well on its way and with it, the devs have been making much progress in both the artistic polish of the game, as well as continued development of multiplayer game mechanics. The art team has been adding several new death animations for units including the Drone’s disintegration into ashes when torched by Hellions, or the explosion of the Overlord sacs by Marine Gauss Rifle fire, and even Marauders being sliced into various pieces by Dark Templars. All of it is quite a sight to see and it is the hope of the art team that these additional animations will really give players a grand experience of immersion into an epic StarCraft battle. On the multiplayer side, the designers are testing out various macro-management encouraging mechanics that will be implemented to each race, but still be played out differently per race. These macro elements will be aimed to allow players with greater macro-management skills to compete with the advantage of gathering more resources than a player who does not emphasize as much on resourcing. More details about the mechanics that are being implemented will be covered in the next Q&A batch and is also planned to be showcased in the next StarCraft II Battle Report.

---StarCraft II Q&A - Batch 48---

1. The recently released screenshot ( shows a combat in rainy night appearance. Will night or different weather be limited to campaign mode? And will it be possible to select it on the map editor? - Kain175 (USEast)

Night and rain effects will be possible in campaign mode but are not likely occur in multiplayer. Additionally, these effects will be available to map editors to use for custom maps.

2. Does blizzard plan any interface options for people with physical issues (such as color blindness, deafness)? - Kain175 (USEast)

This is a good suggestion and we would like to give all players opportunities to enjoy our games. While we may not be able to create accommodations for everyone, there have definitely been strides made to accommodate more players than the previous StarCraft. For example, you can find more alerts on the screen, such as attack, build complete, and more in StarCraft II and this system will be helpful for players who have difficulty hearing the game sound.

3. Will there be any multi monitor support? - SC2Pod

StarCraft II will support widescreen but not multi-monitor. Widescreen is definitely becoming more of an industry standard, but multi-monitor support for StarCraft II may be too great of a tactical advantage over other players without more than one monitor.

4. SC1 "caster" units did not have a regular attack; some of WC3 "caster" units did have a regular attack; will SC2 "caster" units remain attack-less? – TheWarCenter

Some of the caster units in StarCraft II like the High Templar and Infestor lack a default attack, but there still are some caster units which also have a normal attack ability such as the Mothership and the Ghost.

5. When two opposing forces come to a Xel'naga tower who gets control? Is it the person with the largest army or is it on a first-come/first-serve basis? – TheWarCenter

When two opposing forces are near a Xel’Naga Watch Tower, they both lose control of the Watch Tower, regardless of the size of the army or the order of who arrives first. For example, when you have a ground unit next to the Xel’Naga Watch Tower, you will get vision of the area surrounding the Xel’Naga Watch Tower. When the opponent’s unit approaches close enough to control the Watch Tower, the Xel’Naga Watch Tower will shut down and both you and your opponent will lose the increased visual range given by the tower.

6. Is the charge ability only limited to the distance between the zealot and its target or is it also limited to the time that is needed to reach the target? Presumed you have a zealot on a cliff and you want him to charge an enemy unit below the cliff, will it charge all the way over the ramp or will it stop charging after some time? - StarCraft 2 Source DE

Zealot’s Charge ability is based on the ground range, regardless of the height. So a Zealot on the cliff will not start charging a unit below the cliff, even if they look like they are visually right next to each other. The Zealot must be within a set pathing distance from the target for it to activate it’s charge ability, meaning the path in which the Zealot takes to get to the target is a set amount. Additionally, Zealots will not be able to charge through cliffs. They must go around.

7. Are you going to add some of the best custom maps to the regular ladder pool? - StarCraft 2 Source DE

In the future, there will be opportunities for map makers to get their maps added to ladder pools. These maps will of course, be selected based on quality, in terms of competitiveness for multiplayer games.

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