Starcraft II Q&A: 30-40

Discussion in 'StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty' started by Emperor Pan I, Feb 16, 2008.

  1. Emperor Pan I

    Emperor Pan I Respected Member

    Aug 8, 2002
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    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 30: Map Maker Series 3---

    Going along with out monthly discussion topic about map making requests, we've sought to get more answers to help direct these upcoming discussions.

    Chat with Devs: Brett Woods is back with us to answer our community map making questions. We cant stress enough that StarCraft II is going to have immense potential in the UMS (User Map Settings) area, where we hope to seriously empower the community with the tools you need, to create some awesome gaming additions to StarCraft II.

    As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if you are enjoying these batches!

    1) Will it be possible to code the game so map makers can make maps where people can stop incoming spell/missile?

    This should be possible through customized ability data and/or triggers.

    2) Will we have selectable male/female of every unit?

    No, we don't have plans to include male and female versions of each unit.

    3) Will we have the option to give players the option to change weapons in-game?

    While we don't have any plans for a specialized interface for this, it would be possible using the highly flexible ability system.

    4) Will you guys link multiplayer maps, so mapmakers can make multiplayer campaigns?

    Yes, we do plan to support multiplayer campaigns and linked maps.

    5) Will all buildings stand alone and also can we have the ability to disable tech trees?

    The tech tree will be fully configurable through customized data and/or triggers.

    6) Will research or firing a skill in a certain location be part of the tech tree enabling, for example Stim Packs could be researched to enable a Factory?

    Yes, the tech tree and upgrade system will be fully configurable from the editor.

    7) Will it be possible for AI to be commanded to research a skill, perform an upgrade, build a building at a location, build a unit at a location, retreat from a location?

    Yes, there will be extensive AI scripting support.

    8) Will mapmakers have the ability to set weather that can change the terrain and interrupt gameplay for players? Is this for anywhere or in a specific location?

    Weather effect technology has not yet been finalized. However, even if weather effects do not affect gameplay normally, it would be possible to drive both the desired weather effects and associated gameplay effects through triggers.

    ---End of Transmission---

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 31---
    Gameplay Blog: This past week while playing a Terran versus Terran mirror game, I discovered a new unit option from the Factory. This new unit is known as the Jackal, which is a fast vehicle like the Vulture, but instead wields a rail gun, which does an area of effect damage in a straight line at ground units.

    My opponent built the standard Marines & Medics (M&Ms) composition while I bunkered my choke point and teched straight to a Factory with a Reactor add on, which allows me to build two Jackals at one time from a single Factory.

    After I built a group of 6 Jackals, I rolled onto the field with my Jackals broken up in two groups with 3 Jackals each. I engaged his M&Ms with my first group, having the Marines line up around my Jackals as they naturally do while firing. Quickly, I brought in my second group of Jackals along the side to flank the M&Ms and the line attack did the rest, killing up to 2-3 units with a single focus fire command. With a little micromanagement, I was able to decimate his whole group of 15 or so units, while only losing two Jackals. That battle gave me a significant military advantage, which eventual led to a relatively quick win.

    As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if you are enjoying the batches, especially the new sections like the gameplay blog we've added.

    1. How will Marines mount into a pod? Is this done via the barracks, or an entirely unannounced building, or Dropship-like airship yet to be revealed? (

    Terran infantry currently load into the Shadow Ops building (prerequisite for the Ghost). A Ghost can then launch drop pods, which originate from that building.

    2. Can a player order a Ghost in a Bunker to call Nukes and Drop Pods? baboonsy (

    Yes, Terran infantry currently have all abilities except the SCV repair ability available for use while inside a bunker, including the use of Nukes and Drop Pods.

    3. What spells are specifically affected by the Nullifiers ability? Will physical spells like the Marines Stim Pack, the Ghosts Nuke, or Reaper Mines be disabled? Also, will spells cast before entering the area (I.E. Ghosts cloak) be disabled upon entering the area? (StarCraft 2 -

    Only abilities which require energy usage will need be unable to be cast while in the Null Voids area of effect. Additionally, the Null Void ability will disengage cloak by units such as the Ghost. It also currently reveals burrowed Zerg units, but this is still being debated in terms of balance.

    4. Last we heard, Veterancy was active for the Terran but we havent heard anything about it since and are quite curious is it still in the game? (

    Veterancy will likely be seen in the single player campaign, but will not be in the multiplayer game.

    5. In StarCraft, some units had instant attack animations (Corsiar, Mutalisk, Vulture). This allowed people with good micro to make these units move and shoot. In contrast there were units that had an attack animation which required the unit to stop and shoot. This allowed people with good micro to dance (move, shoot, move shoot, maximizing the distance travelled without the unit losing any shooting time). In Warcraft III, units tended to have attack animations which took as long as the cooldown for the attack, making micro actions such as these non-existent.

    Will units in StarCraft II have attack animations that last as long as the cooldown for their attack, similar to Warcraft III? or will players be able to dance (moving in between shooting) like in StarCraft? Also, will there be any units with instant attack animations that can be micromanaged to move and shoot like in StarCraft? -Fen / GenericTerranPlayer (

    Balance will be the first priority when determining the animation duration for units. With that said, there will be certain units that players will be able to dance with, and there will be other units which will force the unit to stop and fire. Some units in StarCraft II will not only need to stop and fire, but will do additional damage to a target while it focuses. All of these characteristics which determine how a unit will be used in competitive play will be chosen based on balance.

    6. When a unit is cloaked or burrowed, can the sensor tower still see the unit in the fog of war? DarkAlaskan (

    Yes, the Sensor Tower will reveal all units in the fog of war, including cloaked and burrowed units. Sensor Towers are currently a staple to any Terran defense or offensive.

    ---End of Transmission---​


    Just so you know
    "The Jackal's attack is instant, whereas the original StarCraft Lurker had an attack that would go outwards from the location of the Lurker, which allowed a player to potentially dodge the attack even if you were originally standing in its line of attack."

    "The Jackal does not currently hit air, but be assured that Terrans will have their counters to air. At the moment, they are still figuring out what unit best fits that role (such as the Thor)."

    "They currently need to stop and fire. But if your opponent's units are in the line of attack of a Jackal when it attacks, they will surely take damage, whereas if it were a Lurker (from StarCraft), they would still have about half a second to react and possibly dodge that attack."

    "The Banshee now has a single target attack. It will still be able to cloak and is still only able to hit ground targets.

    It is true that Terran does have various area of effect attacks now, though most of them all require micromanagement."

  2. Emperor Pan I

    Emperor Pan I Respected Member

    Aug 8, 2002
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    Starcraft II Q&A: 30-31

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 32: SCREENIES---

    There is lots to talk about in Batch 32 and I'll be answering questions through the day about these screeenshots so fire away :) I hope everyone enjoys them!

    Community ScreenCraft: In addition to our Q&A Map Maker Series, Gameplay Series, Lore Series, we are going to include our Community ScreenCraft Series, featuring screenshots crafted specifically to progress the dialogues and discussions we have currently going on in the community. To start us off, I have taken four screenshots which capture our latest discussions over the past month. Feel free to comment, give feedback, or ask questions in regards to these screenshots. When doing so, it will help to identify the screenshot you are referring to as Screenshot A or Screenshot B and etc. If you have you have additional screenshots you would like to see, that would also benefit our community discussions, please request them here: StarCraft II General Discussion -

    Screenshot A: Blink Assault

    In Blink Assault you can clearly see and feel the new sense of Terran grittiness. Team colors are a bit worn from battle and the metal texture in Terran units and building have been desaturated a bit. In this screenshot you can see Immortals take on the pounding of fortified Siege Tanks with their hardened shields, while the Stalkers blink up on the cliffs for the assault.

    Screenshot B: A Lone Outpost

    The Terran Army struggles to defend their lone outpost in the scrap yards, fending off a Protoss onslaught just long enough until the Battlecruisers arrive. Though even with their reinforcements, the battle is far from won, as the Protoss also arrive with their fleet of Carriers to counter.

    Screenshot C: The Final Push

    This screenshot depicts a large counter attack upon a Protoss base responsible for warping in several waves of attacks on Terran outposts. Dropped Siege Tanks bombard the area, while the Jackals torch up the surroundings with their area of effect line attack. Furthermore, the Marauders slow incoming Zealots as the Battlecruisers plasma weapons make short work of them.

    Screenshot D: Anti-Gravity Back Door

    As requested by the community, I have taken a screenshot showing a Dark Templar squad secretly infiltrating the Terrans front lines with the help of the Nullifier and its Anti-Gravity ability (previous moved from the High Templar). The Terrans wont know what hit them until it is too late.

    As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if you are enjoying the batches, especially the new sections like the ScreenCraft section we've added.

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 32: ScreenCraft Series ---

    1. Will allies be able to use each others transport/teleportation methods? Marines in Overlords, Zealots in Nydus Worms, etc.. ? (

    Many of these questions are still being debated within the development team and the final decisions will ultimately be determined through balance. Nonetheless, classic abilities, such as heal by the Terrans, will be usable on allies regardless of faction.

    2. Does the Anti Gravity spell work for your own units? In other words, can you use it to lift up buildings to protect them from an early wave of Zergling? (

    Yes, the Anti Gravity ability can be casted on friendly units and buildings. Also, the Anti Gravity ability has been added to the Nullifier, as the ability has proven much more effective in the earlier parts of the game. Nonetheless, this is still being tested and is subject to change.

    3. What happens to units who are under a flying building when it falls down? Can you build a building under the building that are flying? and if that is the case, what happens to that building that it is landing on? Get.Yourgun (

    This is actually a notable design challenge the development team is currently facing with the Anti Gravity ability. Currently, players are not allowed to build buildings under the floating object. When the object does land, it will land on top of whatever unit is under it. For example, if a Supply Depot is lifted up by Anti Gravity and it lands on a Marine when the ability duration is over, it will indeed land on the Marine (but will not cause damage). The Marine can then move out from under that building in the direction of that players choosing. The details around Anti Gravity are still very much in testing. As this is a new ability, many of the details are not finalized.

    4. In StarCraft many glitches and near-bugs were discovered with the years passing. Many of them are used regularly and changed the game (Mutalisk stack, patrol-attacking, mineral hopping, Lurker hold, etc). This is and was even more true for other games (bunny hopping in quake or through-floors dmg, etc) and it became part of the identity of the game that people knew about those glitches, learned and mastered them. They became important aspects of the game.
    Will any of these bugs make an appearance in StarCraft II, but as intentional features?
    - Chosi (

    Yes, certain unit characteristics like the firing on the move dynamic of the Mutalisk, as well as stackable flyers will be in StarCraft II. Some of these characteristics may not feel completely the same, as it is a bit tougher to get flying units to stack, it will still be possible. Although it is important to note that not all of these characteristics will be making it back to StarCraft II, there will be plenty of opportunities for players to find new ways to use the units of StarCraft II in creative ways similar to the original.

    5. What are the duties of the Blizzard eSports team, and how much will they be responsible for promoting Starcraft II as and eSport?(

    The eSports team is responsible for developing Blizzards presence in the increasingly popular eSports scene. Their duties include the planning and operation of Blizzard tournaments around the world in places such as Asia, Europe and the United States. They also provide third-party support for the eSports leagues that host both online and live events using Blizzard titles. Additionally, they help provide balance feedback to our development teams based on interaction with professional gamers and response from the eSports community. They will have an integral role in promoting StarCraft II as an eSports as they have done for the previous Blizzard titles.

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 33: ScreenCraft---

    Over the past week since the Zerg announcement, we've had many requests for an EPIC battle screenshot, thus I'm happy to present our 'Psi Onslaught' to the community for this latest ScreenCraft batch.

    Make sure to make your screenshot requests for our future ScreenCraft batches here:

    Also, we are always in need of good questions to guide the latest in StarCraft II discussions. Add your questions to our community questions request thread:
    StarCraft II General Discussion -

    Chat with Devs: After the Zerg release, I have been asking Dustin what types of changes are being made to the other factions during this process, and one of the most interesting ones that have been added has to do with the Terran Ghost. In order for the Terrans to counter the various new casters that have been introduced to all sides in StarCraft II, the Ghost can now detect units with energy in a 30 yard radius. This passive ability works similarly to the Sensor Tower, revealing their location even within the fog of war. This ability could also no doubt open up some interesting assassination type single player missions as well with the Ghost.

    ScreenCraft: Psi Onslaught
    StarCraft II

    As requested by the community, the Protoss have brought their heavy hitters in this psi onslaught upon a developing Zerg base. In retaliation, the Zerg counter with a ravaging pack of Ultralisks and Zerglings upon the advancing Templar army. While the epic battle begins, the Protoss player cleverly sneaks a group of Stalkers to raid the Zergs economy as well.

    As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if you are enjoying the batches, especially the new sections like the ScreenCraft section we've added.

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 33: ScreenCraft---

    1. What upgrade type (assuming these are returning) is the Viking using? Vehicle or ship? (Or perhaps infantry?) (

    The Viking is built from the Starport again and will use ship armor rather than vehicle armor.

    2. What will Zerglings be able to do against new Jackal? (StarCraft II -

    Attacking Jackals efficiently with Zerglings will take a bit of micromanagement, making sure that Zerglings are spread out or attacking from different directions. The Jackals hit points have also been reduced from 125 to 75 with a slight increase to their speed. This will make them more vulnerable to Zerglings if you can get them close to surround the Jackals.

    3. If a unit is being produced at a Protoss building while it becomes unpowered, does it continue production or pause until re-powered? ( Blazur

    If a Protoss building becomes unpowered, all production including research at that building will pause until re-powered.

    4. In lieu of the Nydus Worm, will the Zerg Overlord maintain its "Ventral Sacs" upgrade? Will the Ultralisk have any sort of unit carrying capacity? (

    Currently, the Overlord's original Ventral Sacs ability has been taken out. With the introduction of the Nydus Worm, the Zerg will have more than enough mobility to keep their enemies on their toes. On that note, the Ultralisk will not be able to carry units.

    5. To what degree will StarCraft II allow for remapping - limited remapping a la Warcraft III, or complete remapping of key bindings?
    - Excalibur_Z (

    We are planning to support key-mapping for StarCraft II. The extent of the ability for remapping keys is still to be determined. Even in current experimentations, we have found that there are often many issues with conflicting key bindings as there are very few open unmapped keys to be swapped in and out.

    ---End of Transmission---

    ---StarCraft II Q&A - Batch 34---
    So now that all three races are out of the bag, you may have thought you've seen it all- nope! The Dev Team is still working very hard to add even more innovation and clever balance affecting design changes that will indeed polish out the gameplay of StarCraft II that much more.

    Also, if you haven't already, be a part of StarCraft history by participating in our "I <3 SC" event! Your picture will be added to a wall of StarCraft fans! It is fast and easy to join up! Info here: Blizzard - "I <3 SC" Photo Mosaic

    Chat with the Devs: As of recent, the Dev Team has added a new ability to the Protoss Carrier that will give it a little more Umph! versus Zerg Corruptor attacks or Viking raids. In the past, the Carrier simply had a large swarm of Interceptor fighters which you had to build from scratch. Carriers now come built with 4 Interceptors already loaded (which is also the max number of Interceptors currently). They also have the new ability to have Escorts built for a temporary power boost to focus fire. Strike Fighter Escorts cost resources to build and last only 45 seconds, but add a decent amount of firepower to a Carriers attack. A Carrier can have a maximum of 4 Escorts. Escorts are given attack orders to focus-fire on whatever the Carrier is attacking and they can be destroyed independently of the Carrier or each other. The cost for these Escorts will be significant enough to where players will not want to just have the max number all of the time, as that would bleed your economy needlessly. Thus, players will have to pick and choose their battles in where they want the full force of the Protoss fleet present.

    As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if you are enjoying the batches.

    1. An important aspect of any RTS game is for all races to have a way to siege fortified island positions, do the Protoss and Terrans [[and Zerg]] have a unit that is capable of doing so? (

    All factions will have units capable of attacking from a longer range. Zerg have the Swarm Guardian, Terrans have the Battlecruisers Yamato Cannon, and the Protoss have the Carrier (which has gotten some additional abilities since we last talked about it). However we are not at all sure that these are enough to deal with fortified islands. More testing will tell us if this is sufficient or if we need more.

    2. The Infestor is a very impressive unit that enchanted the community, because we all wanted to see a unit that is able to move while it is burrowed. Nevertheless there are still pending questions. Can the Infestor even infest Zerg buildings? Are infested marines produced as fast as it is shown on the gameplay trailer? Do you have to train them manually or will they pop out automatically? Do they cost minerals?(

    Like many Zerg units the Infestor is still under development. It cannot infest Zerg buildings though that is something we are still discussing. The speed at which Marines are generated changes frequently as we work on the ability. Sometimes its fast, sometimes not so fast. They will (probably) pop automatically. They do not have any cost associated with them.

    3. The Medivac is a very interesting Unit, but there are not many information given to us so far. Can you tell us any more details about it? At which tier can it be found? How does the healing work? Can it even heal multiple units at once and how fast does it heal compared to the medic? (

    The Medivac is currently available from the Starport (no add-ons required). The healing works just like the medic. We will (if we keep the mechanic) be adding a graphic of the Medivac deploying medical drones to heal friendly biological units. It will only be able to heal a single unit at one time. The speed at which it heals changes frequently as we try different balance options.

    4. There are many ambiguities concerning the Roach due to the much different information that has been given to us. Many users are quite unsure about its kind of attack. Is it a melee unit or is it ranged? Or is it kind of a crazy mix of both? And most important: can it hit air as well? (

    The Roach is ranged. He has been melee in the recent past (hence the art with the big claws) but he is currently ranged. This gives him added utility at chokes where he really shines. We have tried it as ground only and we have tried it as being able to hit ground or air. Currently it is ground only.

    5. Can a Zerg Corruptor infest lifted-off Terran buildings, Colossuses, and other Zerg units such as Mutalisks or other Corruptors? Can Corruptor infest Thors, Siege Tanks or Marines if they are lifted-off by Anti-Gravity? ( PCBANGFT

    Yes, Corruptors can infest anything that flies or is forced into the air by abilities such as Anti-Gravity. In the situation of a unit being lifted by Anti-Gravity, the unit will return to the ground when the anti-gravity effect ends and sit on the ground. The corrupted unit is only allowed to attack air units and will do so if an enemy air unit flies by.

    6. What is the reasoning behind changing Colossus' 'sliding' thermal lances (from 1st gameplay movie) to an array of beams (zerg trailer)? Balance? Visuals? Will it be possible to choose such sliding or array (or is it just 'horizontal' line?) fire mode from the Map Editor (available also for any other unit)? ( Dagguh

    The array of beams give a more interesting AOE template for players to attempt to micro. The sliding beam looks cool, but ultimately doesnt produce any new gameplay. The current visuals on the beam are temp to see if we like the mechanic.

    ---End of Transmission---
  3. Emperor Pan I

    Emperor Pan I Respected Member

    Aug 8, 2002
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    Starcraft II Q&A: 30-33

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 35: Map Maker Series 3---​

    Despite seeing all three factions, there are still many changes being made to all factions which continue to finesse the gameplay of StarCraft II.

    Furthermore, if you are reading this batch, and love StarCraft, show everyone! For the "I <3 SC" event, we've been getting tons of fun entries of StarCraft lovers in their classrooms, playing the game, posing at famous landmarks, and many unique digitally edited entries!

    What does StarCraft mean to you?

    Make sure you are represented in this wall of fans that will be engraved in Blizzard history. It is very simple to participate- Take a picture and join us!
    Blizzard - "I <3 SC" Photo Mosaic

    For newcomers, if you want a quick rundown on the story leading into StarCraft II- we have it here in a nutshell:
    StarCraft II
    StarCraft II

    Chat with the Devs: The Dev team has been working hard to find the best defense mechanic that works for the Zerg. The latest builds have brought back Sunken and Spore Colonies, with a new twist. Sunken and Spore Colonies can now uproot and crawl to a more advantageous position. Incidentally, Protoss Phase Cannons no longer have the ability to change positions.

    Giving the Zerg mobile defensive structures feels a lot more right as this ability opens up many more aggressive strategies in both Zerg mirrors as well as combined with Overlords generating creep to push these defenses up towards the front lines. Furthermore, there definitely is something about watching defenses crawling around that just seems very Zerg-like. Its worth noting that Zerg defenses while in mobile form have fewer hit points and are more vulnerable to attack.

    Gameplay Blog: Over the past few weeks Ive really been practicing up with the Terran faction, as it is probably the one that I am weakest at playing with. After getting beat about three or four times and finally getting my build order up to speed, I realized Terrans actually have a huge advantage in StarCraft II with being able to block off choke points to your base with ease.

    Currently, on most maps a Terran player is able to block off their base entry point before the enemy is able to scout, making it nearly impossible for the enemy to find out what the Terran player is doing behind that wall. With only a few Marines and a couple SCVs, the Terran player can fend off most early attacks, especially since they usually also have a higher elevation sight advantage.

    Three popular options amongst the staff playing at Blizzard include:

    1) Tech straight to Banshees, which have a very powerful single target attack, and can be researched to cloak. This unit devastates if the opponent is not prepared with both anti- air units as well as detectors.

    2) Tech straight to Reapers, which can jump up and down hills without a spotter, and get an added bonus damage versus light units. What this means is that the Reapers are able to quickly get in an enemys resource line to annihilate workers at an astounding rate, as well as get out before the enemy can react. This works great if you can scout/scan to see if their main base is defended well with static defenses. On top of that, did I forget to mention that they can drop mines that do significant damage towards buildings? Yes, that means with a handful of these guys, you can drop enough mines to take out whole Hatcheries/ Nexuses, or strategically use them to take out Pylons or tech buildings. After you drop the mines, jump back out of combat and let the mine cooldown reset for another round of raids.

    3) If a Terran player bunkers up as mentioned above and no attacks are made by this player, one way an opponent may respond is to expand and build a stronger economy, as they do not feel threatened. In this case, a Terran player can simply build up a huge force of Marines and Marauders behind the wall without the opponent knowing, and then strike when their opponent drops their guard.

    Luckily, the Dev Team is well on top of balance, as they have introduced new abilities such as the Nullifiers Anti Gravity ability to lift up buildings blocking choke points and Nydus Worms to bypass such defenses to keep those Terran players honest. Maps will likely have larger choke points in the future to offer a little more chance for opponents to get a Probe or Drone in early to scout early teching Terran players.

    As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if you are enjoying the batches.

    ---StarCraft II Q&A - Batch 35---

    1. Do Banelings damage nearby friendly units when they explode onto an enemy target? (Starcraft 2 Australia - News, Videos, Units, Buildings, Races, Forums, Release Date)

    No, in the current build the Banelings do not damage friendly units caught in the splash. The splash damage does cover its area of effect range evenly, doing the same damage to enemy units throughout the whole area.

    2. When a Nydus Worm is detected, is it possible to shoot it down while it is traveling? (StarCraft II -

    Yes, having detectors in strategic places will keep you from being surprised by an unexpected Nydus Worm showing up in your base.

    3. Does the Nydus Worm, a ground unit, move through open space? ( pop.helo

    Yes. We dont know how we are going to make this look yet. When we come up with a visual solution we are happy with we will show it to the community.

    4. Can Zerg buildings be infested, and if so, what units are produced? (

    Zerg buildings cannot be infested. It is planned that infested Protoss buildings will produce an infested Protoss unit that will play differently than the infested Marine.

    5. Will be there such doodads like customizable light or shader? ( Dagguh


    6. The first screenshot listed in Karune's 33rd Q&A shows what looks like the Mothership's Black Hole ability. However, it was said that the Black Hole was removed. Does this mean the ability has returned in the current build? (

    As mentioned before, the state of many of these units are always changing. In the current build, the Mothership has become more of a support unit with increased hit points and decreased speed. The Mothership now allows Protoss Gateways that have converted to Warp Gates to be able to warp units straight to the Mothership. The warp-in mechanic (which cannot be queued) has also been tweaked to allow Protoss players who use it to get a slight time decrease in unit production as opposed to queuing units traditionally at the Gateways. In other words, the cooldown timer on warp-in doesnt take as long as the build time for units at a Gateway.

    Furthermore, the Mothership will also have the ability to transfer energy down to casters below it, such as Templars. Both the Time Bomb and Black Hole abilities have been removed

    7. Will Phase Cannons be able to rematerialize on an allys Pylon Power, or an enemys Pylon Power for that matter? (

    Phase Cannons are no longer able to move in the current build.

    8. Is the Tauren Marine going to be included in the StarCraft II map editor? ( scorpionbrood


    ---End of Transmission--[/quote]
  4. Wing Zero

    Wing Zero lol just as planned

    Oct 27, 2002
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    StarCraft II Q&A Batch 36: ScreenCraft

    Reminder: This is the final week for I<3 SC Submissions to be eligible for T-Shirts! Send your entries in today! Be a part of StarCraft history!
    Blizzard - "I <3 SC" Photo Mosaic

    ScreenCraft: This batch's screenshot is to show the significant size increase of the Baneling since the original Protoss announcement gameplay trailer. The size increase is to allow the possibility of focus firing on incoming Banelings with additional micromanagement.

    Feel free to discuss the evolution of the Baneling in our Monthly Discussion Topic at:
    StarCraft II EU General Discussion -

    Baneling Invasion
    StarCraft II

    An army of Banelings invade a developing rival Zerg base.

    1. Do Protoss Immortals get killed when a Nuke explodes next to them(seeing as the Hardened Shield blocks all high profile attacks and that a Nuke is definitely a high profile attack)? ( Eragon320

    In term of units, the only units that will be able to survive a Nuke will be the Protoss Mothership and Immortals upgraded with Hardened Shields. An upgraded Immortal will take 10 damage from a Nuke. To all other units, the Nuke will do 800 damage, thus making it much more powerful than the Nuke in the original StarCraft.

    2. How powerful is the Roach's regeneration ability? How much time is needed to regenerate from 1 to full hp? ([/COLOR]

    The Roach currently regenerates 15 hit points per second, allowing it to regenerate to full health in 6 seconds. In countering Roaches, a player must either micromanage the battle to make sure they are focus firing on each Roach one at a time, or they have to bring in high damage units such as Siege Tanks or Archons.

    3. Are Overseers any tougher than Overlords? ( Mestroyer
    When an Overlord evolves into an Overseer, it will gain a speed bonus, passive detection, the ability to generate creep below it, and the ability to corrupt' resources to make it more difficult for opponents to gain access to them. Furthermore, when Overseers sit in the same spot, over time its visual range will increase (but not its detection range).

    4. Is it worth it to build a Terran Reactor Add-on since the benefit of doubling your queue list is not that useful, as it is often a bad idea to have your queue full? (

    Yes! The Terran Reactor doesn't just double the size of your queue list. For a mere 50 minerals and 50 gas cost for the Reactor, that Barracks, Factory, or Starport will have the ability to create two units simultaneously (assuming that unit doesn't require a tech lab add-on). Most of the time, building the Reactor will be worth it, rather than building a second Barracks, Factory, or Starport. Not only will you be able to build from a single building the production of two normal buildings, you will be able to salvage that Reactor if needed to get 100% of the cost back. Being able to salvage allows for quick tech shifts or evacuations.

    5. Will there be different building textures resembling the actual terrain? (in Warcraft 2 the buildings were snowy on the winter maps) (

    This is something the art team would like to do, though it will ultimately come down to time. There's a lot of art work still left to do, such as their current task, which is putting the finishing touches on the Terran Marauder amongst several other units. On the Marauder, players will be able to see many intricate animations for both the weapons and their power suits.

    6. Did the High Templar's Hallucination ability undergo any changes due to the introduction of new tough units, such as Thor or Colossus? ( Elsoron

    The Hallucination ability did not undergo changes because of those new units, but it did get significant buffs since the original StarCraft. First off, hallucinated units still have the same hit points as the original unit, but take double damage. Furthermore, the duration the unit lasts for will be around 2-3 minutes, which will be significantly longer than the original StarCraft. On top of that, to hallucinate a unit only costs 40 energy, which is much cheaper than the original StarCraft's cost of 100 energy.

    ---End of Transmission---

    StarCraft II Q&A Batch 37​

    Chat with Devs: One of the latest changes the Devs are trying for the Nomad is replacing their previous stationary Mine Drone with Spider Mines. The Spider Mines behave the same as Spider Mines from the original StarCraft. It now also does 50 damage plus 50 additional damage towards armored units. Instead of only having 3 Spider Mines, the Nomad will be able to plant Spider Mines with the cost of 15 energy. These Mines will definitely prove quite formidable against mass Tier 1 units such as Zerglings and charging Zealots.

    As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if you are enjoying the batches.

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 37---​

    1. Can the Ghost snipe casting (energy based) units in the fog of war using its passive sensing ability? ( crazy_dave

    While the Ghost will not be able to snipe casters in the fog of war, their current range to detect casters(units with energy) is 30, giving you plenty of time to prepare for incoming threats.

    2. Could you tell us more details about the Reapers' mines mechanics? Are they visible for the enemy? Can they be defused, or should simply be destroyed? Do they deal damage to friendly units and to each other? If so, does the explosion of one mine cause the detonation of its neighbors, or they just die, without dealing damage? ( Elsoron

    Yes, the Reapers mines will be visible, though depending on the placement, they can be covered by enemy units moving over them. The mines have very few hit points and can be killed easily. Nonetheless, it is important to note that they are very small, making it more difficult to micromanage those attacks when there are several mines.

    Mines damage both enemy and friendly units/buildings, so making sure you dont blow up your own Reapers is quite important ;) Mines will not detonate other mines, have a 30 second cooldown, and they currently do 30 damage plus 30 additional damage to armored units (including buildings). Furthermore, the mine is now an upgradeable ability of the Reaper.

    3. In StarCraft II there are destructible obstacles like rocks. Apart from simply killing them the Protoss Nullifier can lift them with his Anti-Gravity spell. Do the other races have any similar options to remove or pass the rocks with spells? (

    Actually, the ability to lift destructible doodads has been classified as a bug and has been fixed in the latest builds. Nullifiers have already proved to be quite strong when used in groups, being able to lift up Siege Tanks and Ultralisks, effectively taking them out of combat until the rest of their reinforcements are dead.

    4. Do Anti-Gravitated Banelings keep their suicidal abilities and act as Scourge? (

    Yes, when Banelings die while being lifted by Anti-Gravity, their explosion will hit air units in its area of effect. This could undoubtedly open up some unique and unexpected strategies in team games.

    5. Blizzard made 2 e-sport oriented games after StarCraft: Warcraft 3 and WoW. What are the biggest lessons that you've learned from those 2 games and how will you apply them to StarCraft II? - VIB (

    One of the main goals for StarCraft II is to keep the game very visually intuitive and readable. As Dustin has mentioned in our recent chat, visually When a unit teleports, it teleports. When it shoots, it looks like it is shooting. It should be easy to follow on a screen and players should be able to quickly understand what is happening in the battles. Futhermore, Blizzards games has followed the premise of easy to learn and hard to master. StarCraft II will follow this philosophy.

    6. How does the Marauders slow ability work against the Zealots charge ability. According to present knowledge the concussion grenade shot of a Marauder forces its target to stop moving for a short time; afterwards the targeted unit can go straight forward. So does it stop a charging Zealot and does the speed bonus remain?(

    When the Marauders concussion grenade hits an enemy target, it will reduce that units speed immediately by a set percentage. The cooldown of the concussion grenade shot is subject to balance. Nonetheless, a charging Zealot slowed by a concussion grenade is still pretty fast. Before the Protoss player upgrades their Zealots with charge, a Marauder can kite a Zealot with relatively little micromanagement.

    ---End of Transmission---​

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 38---

    We have a traditional Q&A Batch this time around, in which we were able to add in additional questions from the community! There are still several art changes which prevent new screenshots from being shown, but once we get them out, they will be worth the wait! The development team has also been experimenting with many upgrades for all sides, which we'll also be updating the community on as testing progresses.

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 38---

    1. If the Roach is hit by any spell like "plague" or "psi storm," something that reduces hit points per second, will this be negated by its HP regeneration, or result in fewer hit points gained per second for the duration of the spell? (

    To clarify, a Roach regenerates at a set rate and Psi Storm does a set amount of damage at intervals in the area of effect. Put that Roach under a Psi Storm in the current build for the full duration and the Roach will have approximately 50% of its original health after the Psi Storm is over. With a new upgrade ability at the Hive which allows the Roach to have an even more increased regeneration rate, the Roach will emerge from a full duration of Psi Storm at approximately 80% of its original health.

    ***Roaches seem very strong with their regeneration, but with even a little bit of micro management, they are pretty easy to kill. In theory crafting, they seem much stronger than they actually are, though you must counter them with either very specific units or spend additional micromanagement time on them. Siege Tanks, Stim Packed Marines, Stalkers, Immortals, Dark Templars, Hydras, and any air to ground unit, are all effective at killing Roaches with a little micromanagement.

    2. Will Starcraft 2's heroes showcase new models for each hero, or will SCII follow in SC:BW's footsteps, leaving heros as normal units with improved stats? (

    StarCraft II Heroes will have unique models in game, which will be different than standard units.
    Heroes will only be available in the Single Player Campaign and in user created maps. They will not be available in the default multiplayer version of the game.

    3. Will the ranking/experience system that Terran units used to have be available in the Map Editor as on option in Starcraft 2? (

    We will try to have this feature in.

    4. Will it be possible to change (cancel, tie up, etc.) alliance during multiplayer game? (

    Yes, players will be able to have all the original diplomacy features as the original StarCraft and possibly a few extras in regards to controlling units and spending ally resources.

    5. Will StarCraft 2 feature new map tile sets and will any from StarCraft be removed? Reiko.Cry (

    Many of the original map tile sets such as Mar Sara, Char, Shakuras, and Space Platform will be back in StarCraft II, as well as a few additional ones including a new Shattered City tile set.

    6. What creature did the Zergling gain the inspiration to evolve into a Baneling from? (

    The idea of the Baneling didnt actually come from a certain creature. In actuality, it started from the need of something to fill the role of a ground-based, area-of-effect, suicide unit. To give added versatility to the Zergling, they had the Baneling evolve from the Zergling at tier 1 in current builds. For a suicide unit, the art team then took that idea and created a creature with huge sacs of volatile liquids, which you can see on the Banelings in StarCraft II screenshots.

    7. Can you provide more details on the Reaper's mine ability? How much damage does it do? Is it effective vs. both units and buildings? Is it detectable without stealth detection? What's the cooldown on it? - Solesteeler (

    The Reapers mines currently do 30 damage plus 30 additional damage to armored units (including buildings). These mines are not stealthed, have a 30 second cooldown period between uses, and are definitely small enough to make focus firing on them very difficult. In the current build, an upgrade is needed to allow the use of mines by Reapers.

    8. Are the Zerg Sunken and Spore Colonies capable of moving out of the bounds of creep? Elsoron (

    Yes, they are able to move and plant themselves outside of the creeps boundary. Keep in mind that all Zerg buildings not in the boundaries of creep will slowly degenerate and eventually die. Creep which moves into an enemy base will also damage enemy buildings at a slow rate as well, allowing for new types of creep pushing strategies in StarCraft II.

    9. Will the Map Editor support letters from non-English alphabets (ó, ű, ő, ú, á, é, etc.)? (

    Yes, these characters will be supported.

    ***It wasn´t very clear to me if sunken or spore colonies planted outside of creep will start extending their own creep?

    Sunkens and Spore Colonies will not expand the creep. Zerg players will be able to use both Overseers with their new special ability and Creep Tumors, which will expand Zerg creep significantly.

    Terran and Protoss buildings will not be able to be built on Zerg Creep. Existing buildings will be able to be surrounded by Creep though.

    ***how is Blizzard going to try and prevent backstabbing in ladder games? Will teams be locked just like in warcraft 3? Or is there going to be some other unique way to try and prevent backstabbing.

    Teams will be locked in ladder games.

    ***Does psi storm only hit the ground in the current build????
    Psi Storm hits both ground and air

    ---End of Transmission---
  5. Wing Zero

    Wing Zero lol just as planned

    Oct 27, 2002
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    Re: Starcraft II Q&A: 30-38

    -=Batch 39: Map Maker Series=-

    As development for StarCraft II moves forward, so is the Map Editor for StarCraft II. We have no doubt that there will be countless awesome mods created for StarCraft II, so we want to make sure your Map Editor questions are definitely not left out of the Q&As. Keep the questions pouring in!

    Also, in Batch 38, it was mentioned that Sunken and Spore colonies could move and plant off of Creep while also taking damage when not on Creep. To update, Zerg defenses will not be able to plant off of Creep.

    Chat with Devs: Batch 39 focuses on the development of StarCraft IIs Map Editor and I got a chance to chat with our Map Editor Designer, Brett Wood. Brett was able to answer quite a few of our community map editors below. Furthermore, he wanted to also add that the StarCraft II Map Editor will improve upon the World Editor from Warcraft III in every way, with several new features such as having all abilities in the game being data driven. Brett Wood elaborates here on what it means for all data in the game to be data driven:

    [Brett Wood] Lets say you have a cool idea for an implosion type of ability that will rapidly shrink down a targeting unit, then cause an energy shockwave that damages all nearby units within a certain area. Since there is no standard ability with a shrink-down effect, in Warcraft III youd have to resort to some fancy trigger work to achieve this effect. In StarCraft II, this kind of effect can be set up completely in the data files, and you could make the entire ability without having to use any triggers or scripting at all. Generally speaking, setting up abilities and effects will be easier through data customization than using triggers, although there will definitely be a learning curve there as well.

    As always, feel free to give the Dev Team and I a w00t if you are enjoying the Q&As!

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 39: Map Maker Series---

    1) Will the new map editor support placing of traps, doors, and other things commonly referred to as doodads in unorthodox situations? (ie doors, auto guns, wall traps in a jungle map)

    Yes, any object defined in the data files can be placed on the map, regardless of which tileset it is normally associated with.

    2) Will the new map editor support extended upgrade values? (ie, 30 upgrades)

    Yes, upgrades are arbitrarily extendable, as they were in Warcraft III. In addition, upgrades will now be downgradeable via triggers as well (by using a negative value), which was a very common request in Warcraft III.

    3) Will the new editor still support all the other ideas currently implemented in StarEdit?

    This question is a bit vague. As far as I know, everything the original StarCraft could do, StarCraft II can do.

    4) What additional features will the new editor have?

    How much time have you got? Very broadly speaking, the biggest improvements over Warcraft III will be found in the data editor, where literally every game database file is exposed for modification, and in the trigger dditor, which now features the ability to define custom functions and libraries. That said, virtually every aspect of the editor has at least some improvements over Warcraft III/StarCraft.

    5) Do you plan to take ideas from third party programs and update the editor frequently to meet the demands of the map making community?

    Absolutely. We are very much committed to supporting the map/mod community as much as possible, and well be keeping an eye on the forums and updating the editor as often as we can to incorporate new suggestions.

    6) Will be a tool to transfer WC3 models to SC2? ( -Ragnarok_X

    No, there will not be, as StarCraft II is built with a totally new engine.

    7) Given that we know the Roach regenerates faster than normal, will players be able to change the regeneration rates for Zerg units? ( DrakeClawfang

    Yes, all regeneration rates can be easily changed.

    8) Will players be able to give units Protoss shields or Zerg regeneration that don't normally have them? ie, a regenerating Zealot, a Ghost with shields, etc. ( DrakeClawfang

    Yes, you could create a Roach-Zealot hybrid if you would like. Many passive abilities can be interchanged similarly.

    [added from thread] 9) Is the new StarCraftII map editor able to make our own 4th race by combining 3 races different looking and ability etc. together? even more combining with some new units from the editor? ( -cS)beta

    Yes, custom races are fully supported, including the ability to choose them from the game lobby while playing melee maps, as long as the mod defining the race is loaded.

    I'm sure you guys will love that :) I know I'm excited!

    ****Will you be able to customize the UI? Will there be improvements on camera control from warcraft 3?

    All UI layout is defined in external files, so this should be possible. However, we are not planning on having any user-friendly support for this (i.e. no UI Editor).

    Also, the camera will be fully controllable through triggers, as it was in Warcraft 3. More info will be released as it becomes available.

    --End of Transmission---

    ---StarCraft II Q&A Batch 40---

    This week we have launched the 3rd episode of BlizzCast, featuring an interview with the Lead Designer of StarCraft II about the Evolution of the Zerg from the original StarCraft to StarCraft II. Be sure to check that out here:
    BlizzCast - The Blizzard Entertainment Podcast

    Also, I've been curious - would you guys prefer having these Q&A Batches (multiple answered and added into a consolidated release) or would you rather these 4-7 questions be spread out across the forums in pertinent threads on I have been doing a bit of both, but would love to get your feedback on it, to make it easiest for you to follow up on the latest updates in regards to the development of StarCraft II.

    1. By the current look of the game with spectacular death animations you could worry that you can get slightly distracted by dead units while playing. You could for example waste precious APMs (Actions per minute) trying to click on a spliced Space Marine that you thought was still alive. The wrecks of some larger units or deaths for some others could block your sight in-game too. Could this fear be a real issue and will there be the option to toggle down these model details in the settings? (

    Yes, this is an issue we are looking into. For multiplayer, we want to make absolutely sure that players can clearly see visually what is happening on the battlefield. Currently, we are looking to have different types of death animations available for multiplayer than will be present for the single player campaign. A lot of people do still love watching intricate death animations when not in a competitive scene.

    2. Battlecruisers do employ more than one gunner right? So will they be able to attack both air and ground at the same time? (

    Battlecruisers will only be able to attack one unit at a time.

    3. What happens with the units inside a Nydus Worm if it gets killed? Considering it can carry 255 units, would they all die? (

    Units inside the Nydus network will only die when all entrance/exits are killed. This includes the Nydus Warren building, the prerequisite to build Nydus Worms, as it also acts as an entrance and exit to the Nydus network. Nydus Worms that are not deployed as an entrance/exit will not count as an entrance/exit to the network.

    4. So far the map editor seems to be a very powerful tool which doesnt constrain the map makers creativity at all. Will it even be possible to edit critical abilities like path finding? If so, there would be really no limits, or at least none we can imagine at this point. (

    Pathfinding, the method in which a unit will determine how to move, is handled by code, and will not be able to be edited within the map editor. Nonetheless, map makers will be able to edit things such as footprints, speed, and the size of units, which will affect the movement rates of units.

    5. Why were Plasma Torpedoes added to the Battlecruiser when the Banshee has virtually the same attack? (

    The Battlecruiser no longer has Plasma Torpedoes that hit ground. Instead, they can be equipped with a Missile Barrage which will be an air-to-air area of effect attack ability. This ability will make the Battlecruiser even more effective against lightly armored air units, as the attack also gets additional damage points versus light armored units.

    6. In SC: BW we have terrain bonuses for units, for example standing behind a tree or being on higher ground while shot from lower. Are you keeping or maybe even improving such this feature and what happens with large units that are more massive (Thor) or simply larger (Colossus) than a tree or even a cliff? (

    Terrain bonuses are no longer present in StarCraft II. Instead, line of sight will be vastly more important. For instance, units firing from a higher ground will not be able to be seen by ground units without line of sight vision, and thus the ground units will not be able to fire back.

    7. If a Zerg player corrupts a Dropship/Medivac, will they get control of the units inside? - Luddite (

    No, the unit's contents will be destroyed when it becomes corrupted.


    ***The more I think about this the more it has me worried. Take the map Lost Temple as an example. It was common for players to wall their choke ramp with first tier units to prevent their bases from being breached. In SC2, does this mean the players wouldn't even be able to climb that ramp unless they have detection or air units to see at the top of the ramp?
    Know what I mean?

    This is true, though in StarCraft II, there are more units that are able to give you sight in those situations (Reapers, Medivac Dropships, Colossi, Banshees, Sensor Towers (to let you know units are on cliffs), Overseers, as well as older units including Observers, Terran's Scan, and others).

    Furthermore, new abilities like Anti-Gravity help break the choke points, as well as more incentives to build dropships for Terran, Phase Prisms for Warp-In, and Nydus Worms to unload your whole army in a place that bypasses well defended positions.

    On top of that, the better pathing in StarCraft II allow units to get to where you want them to go much faster, such as up ramps and around units

    ***Thor got Anti Air Area Attack and Battlecruiser now too. Are there any big differences in their anti air attack?

    The Battlecruiser's ability takes energy, whereas the Thor's ground to air attack is standard.

    The Battlecruiser's ability is to make it more effective against what it is already effective against. Also, users have the choice to go with the air to air missiles or with the Yamato Cannon. If you are in a game where they have massed a lot of light air units, then you know what to get. This ability simply gives the Terran player more flexibility of options against air in late game.

    ***Do units that move out of the Jackal's flame take less damage then units that stay in the flame for the entire duration of the flames existance? EX: A marine moves out of the flame and takes 10 damage total, but a marine that was in the flame for the entire duration of the flame, would it take more damage?

    Yes, units that move out of the flame will take less damage.

    ---End of Transmission---