Reviews and Problems with StarCraft II:Heart of the Swarm
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StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm
2 September 2013
Summary: It appears Blizzard's learned quite a bit from Diablo III 's launch , as Heart of the Swarm was instantly playable on release with virtually no server problems -- a bit of a rarity, it seems, with recent PC releases. It's a good thing, too, since as soon as I logged in at midnight, I got hooked on StarCraft again.
Excerpt: Minimum System Requirements: StarCraft 2: Wings of Liberty OS: Windows® XP/Windows Vista®/Windows® 7/Windows® 8 (Updated with the latest Service Packs) with DirectX® 9.0c Processor: Intel® Pentium® D or AMD Athlon™ 64 X2 Video: NVIDIA® GeForce® 7600 GT or ATI™ Radeon™ X800 XT or better Memory: 1.5 GB RAM Spoiler alert: This review assumes that you have played SC2: Wings of Liberty (WoL) and attempts to avoid spoilers for Heart of the Swarm (HotS) unless related to a...
Pros: Great RTS game, high level of polish, fun story, long-lasting multiplayer
Cons: Most of the new content is in single player, limited single player replayability, large price tag for those not interested in the single player campaign
Conclusion: We aren’t overjoyed at the sight of a new Blizzard game as much as we were in the past. As for the narrative, well Blizzard is leaving us in the middle of a story, which, realistically, could’ve been told properly years ago in a single release; preferably one that includes campaigns for all 3 three major StarCraft races – Terran, Zerg and Protoss. At this point though, this is wishful thinking.
Pros: Exciting and diverse single-player mission structure, a beautiful and overall engaging real-time strategy with that traditional Blizzard glimmer that gives it a terrific epic feel, the brilliant art, cool-looking graphics and awesome sound create a fine atmosphere;
Cons: Some character and story inconsistencies, relatively short story campaign, friendly AI not as alert as it should be
Summary: Blizzard saves much of its designer polish for the raw game itself: Heart of the Swarm looks great, plays great, and comes with plenty of ways to extend your interest in the Starcraft universe as a whole once you’ve strolled your way through the game’s core campaign. We only hope that Blizzard hasn’t made its game too tight to tweak; a few extra new units, a new building or two, or even bringing some of the upgrade focus of the game’s single-player campaign into the...
Pros: Excellent graphics; creative in-game mechanics; great re-playability
Cons: Lame plot; multiplayer additions feel a wee sparse
Excerpt: A lot of people were upset when they heard that StarCraft II would be broken into three separate campaigns. StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm is the first of two planned expansion packs to 2010's StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, which focused on the Terran. The next expansion pack, Legacy of the Void, is not yet dated (although it is safe to expect a two to three year wait) and will focus on the Protoss dark templar Zeratul.
Summary: Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm has a less varied but a more personable campaign than Wings of Liberty , and its unit additions—a mix of tweaked upgrades of older units and entirely new ones—do a good job mixing up multiplayer. The hero-centric campaign doesn’t entirely suit multiplayer, but the lessons learned do give players a leg up as they segue into online and skirmish play. Minor issues aside, Heart of the Swarm is a great game.
Conclusion: StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm embodies an evolved RTS that shows Blizzard has taken on even more superior genes from other gaming greats, even when those greats coincidentally happen to be of their own creation. If this is what happened since Wings of Liberty, then we should be in for a real treat when Legacy of the Void drops out of hyperspace.
Conclusion: Concept: Explore the twisted but fascinating zerg, and update the already top-shelf multiplayer
Graphics: Everything is beautiful, from action-packed cinematics to in-game unit animation
Sound: An unusual score mixes traditional orchestral work with guitars and growling sound effects – a perfect fit for the subject matter
Playability: The campaign guides players every step of the way, but making the leap to multiplayer is still daunting
Entertainment: A darker,...