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Blizzard’s Rush: 36 Hours of Zerg

The Zerg are here.

Ending a long period of Rumors and leaks, Blizzard has once again chosen an event held in Korea to announce the latest major development in the StarCraft Universe. On March 10th, 2008, Blizzard has unleashed a true Zerg Rush of information dealing with the long awaited third race.

The large amount of screenshots, concept art pictures, videos and game data provide an in-depth view of the last playable race of StarCraft 2.

The Zerg Rush begins

The information rush includes:

  • 13 confirmed Zerg units.
  • 24 new action-packed Zerg screenshots
  • A 15-Question FAQ covering key Zerg aspects
  • A StarCraft2.com update, featuring Zerg lore, new Zerg unit pages and brand new concept art pictures
  • Three videos, featuring a cinematic introduction to the Zerg and a gameplay exhibition, along with footage of a pro-gamer playing as Zerg
  • Two interviews with Sam Didier, Blizzard’s art director, and Dustin Browder, lead game designer

The late arrival has only benefited the Zerg, both feature and graphics wise. Well thought-out abilities such as burrowed unit movement and the complex role of the Queen are clear indicators that the Zerg is a far more mature race than the Protoss and Terran were during their initial presentations.

Here’s all the information we have gathered since the announcement. First up, the new pictures:

84_hr.jpg85_hr.jpg86_hr.jpg87_hr.jpg88_hr.jpg89_hr.jpg90_hr.jpg91_hr.jpg92_hr.jpg93_hr.jpg94_hr.jpg95_hr.jpg97_hr.jpg98_hr.jpg99_hr.jpg100_hr.jpg101_hr1.jpg102_hr.jpg103_hr.jpg104_hr.jpg105_hr.jpg106_hr.jpg107_hr.jpg96_hr.jpg

 

Two official videos have been published. One is an introduction to the Zerg race, narrated by Kerrigan, and the other a long gameplay exhibition video. A third camera movie follows sAviOr, a Korean Pro-Gamer, playing StarCraft 2 as the Zerg.

 

Thirteen Zerg units have been announced so far:

* Drone: Unchanged from StarCraft 1.
drone.gif

These remain the Zerg’s peons – able to harvest minerals and mutate into structures.

* Zergling: Mostly unchanged from StarCraft 1.
zergling.gif

Fast and relatively weak, best used in large numbers. In StarCraft 2, Zerglings can morph into Banelings. For more details, check out our Zergling focus article. The Zerglings have changed since their last appearance, and now no longer have accented wings.

Cute, isn't he?

* Baneling: New unit.

baneling.gif

This previously revealed unit is new to StarCraft 2. The Baneling is not much more than a mobile suicide bomb, replacing the Infested Terran of StarCraft 1.

* Overlord: Somewhat changed from StarCraft 1.

overlord.gif

Overlords grant control points which allow the Zerg to field more units. The Overlords are no longer detectors and can no longer transport units. However, they receive two new abilities:

1) Slime: allows the Overlord to disable resource nodes and neutral observatories.

2) Create Creep: allows the overlord to generate a temporary patch of creep on the ground. This will allow the Zerg to easily expand their influence on the battlefield without expanding and creating additional Hatcheries.

The Overlords can also morph into Overseers.

* Overseer: New unit.

Overseers lose the Overlord’s new abilities. They gain the ability to detect cloaked and burrowed units and also receive a larger sight radius.

No word has been given regarding the missing transportation ability for the Zerg.

* Queen: Completely changed from StarCraft 1.

queen.gif

The Queen of StarCraft 2 shares nothing more than the name with its previous incarnation. The StarCraft 2 Queen is a unique unit – only one can used at a time, similar to the way the Protoss Mothership used to be. The Queen is built directly from the Hatchery, and can no longer leave the ground and fly. The Queen can be built relatively early in the game, and evolves as the Zerg progress in the game. Only the Queen can construct Zerg base defenses. The Queen has many abilities, including:

* Create structures that expand creep and act as stationary defense turrets

* Deep Tunnel: allows the queen to instantly move to any Zerg building

* Toxic Creep: makes a small area of creep harmful to enemy units

* Swarm Infestation: the Queen transforms any Zerg building into a defensive turret

* Regeneration: allows the Queen to quickly heal damaged Zerg buildings

Some of these abilities will likely cost little to no energy, allowing the Queen to use them frequently. However, aside from all these abilities, the Queen is also a formidable attacker in itself. Its attack is powerful enough to kill a Marine in one strike.

Momma Zerg

* Hydralisk: Unchanged from StarCraft 1.

hydralisk.gif

The Hydralisk of StarCraft 2 is still the highly versatile foot soldier of the Zerg. It can shoot its deadly spines at both ground and air targets. Like in the Brood War expansion, Hydralisks can morph into Lurkers.

Hydralisk mass

* Lurker: Unchanged from StarCraft 1.

lurker.gif

The Lurker can only attack while burrowed. These relatively armored Zerg units, morphed from Hydralisks, have a devastating area of effect line attack which is extremely deadly to infantry.

* Roach: New unit.

roach.gif

The Roach is a melee ground unit. The Roach’s specialty lies in its ability to regenerate health extremely quickly. Few units will have enough fire power to actually kill a Roach single-handedly; to be effectively countered, these new Zerg menaces will have to come under concentrated fire.

Roaches in battle

This is an interesting new mechanic for StarCraft, one that creates an incredible tactical advantage for a skilled player who can “dance” with his Roaches, constantly keeping those that come under fire out of harm’s way.

* Mutalisk: Unchanged from StarCraft 1.

mutalisk.gif

The Zerg’s Primary flying attacker, the dreaded Mutalisk, is back. This flying monstrosity can hit both ground and air targets. It is fast moving, fast hitting, and easy to use in large groups. Its only downside is relatively low health – the Mutalisk is too fragile to be able to face anything more than light resistance and come out on top. The Mutalisk can morph into a Swarm Guardian.

Mutalisk gang

* Swarm Guardian: Mostly unchanged from StarCraft 1.

Like in StarCraft 1, the Swarm Guardian is an aerial siege weapon. In StarCraft 2, its long range, highly damaging projectile attack also spawns small broodlings that can attack the enemy for a short period of time.

* Nydus Worm: New Unit.

nydus_worm.gif

Another previously revealed unit, the Nydus worm is an evolution of the StarCraft 1 Nydus Canal. The Nydus Worm can tunnel to any point on the map, allowing Zerg units to funnel through. In the video, several Nydus Worms are used together to deliver units, implying that every worm can only deliver a limited amount of units (unlike the Nydus Canal).

Shaihuludata Gigantica canal

* Infestor: New Unit.

infestor.gif

The Infestor is the primary support unit for the Zerg, taking on the role of the Defiler. It has no attack of its own and relies on powerful abilities to bring harm to the enemies of the Zerg:

* Can move while burrowed. As we have suggested long ago in our “Suggestions for StarCraft 2” article, the Zerg race now features one unit that can move while hidden underground.

* Dark Swarm: Unchanged from StarCraft 1. This ability creates a cloud made out of small insects, making ranged attackers unable to hit units inside its cover.

* Disease: The Zerg’s Irradiate-equivalent, this ability targets a single enemy, giving it a damaging aura that slowly hurts it and other surrounding units.

* Infestation: An evolution of the old Queen ability, the Infestor no longer requires its target structure to be critically damaged. At the moment, it is unclear which buildings the Infestor can infest: Some rumors claim it can affect ALL buildings, including Protoss ones, while others only include specific Terran structures.

Infested!

Infested buildings only stay infested temporarily. During that time, they automatically create Infested Marines.

* Infested Marine: Changed from StarCraft 1.

infested_terran.gif

The StarCraft 2 Infested Marine is no longer a walking bomb. This time, it wields a normal marine rifle, and generally fights like a normal marine, with the only difference being a decreased movement speed.

* Corruptor: New Unit.

corrupter.gif

The Corruptor is the Zerg’s answer to the other races’ air superiority. The Corruptor is not a heavy unit like the Protoss Carrier or Terran Battlecruiser, but it is more than a match for them. Instead of destroying its target, the Corruptor transforms the enemy into an ally – after attacking a target long enough, it becomes corrupted and functions as a stationary turret in the service of the Zerg.

Corruptors on the attack

* Ultralisk: Somewhat changed from StarCraft 1.

ultralisk.gif

The Zerg’s heaviest hitter and most durable unit, the Ultralisk returns improved in StarCraft 2: it now has an area of effect attack, inflicting damage to any unit standing in front of its huge blades, and can also burrow.

The Ultralisk gently gathers up a group of marine to make a sandwitch with

In addition to the revealed units, many familiar buildings are also making a comeback in 3D form:

* Hatchery               * Lair                        * Spawning Pool

hatchery.giflair.gifspawning_pool.gif

* Hydralisk Den        * Spire                      * Ultralisk Cavern

hydralisk_den.gifspire.gifultralisk_cavern.gif

So far, it looks like the StarCraft 2 Zerg buildings are not much more than 3D versions of the originals, similar to the Protoss and Terran races.

It's an ugly planet! A BUG planet!

This long Q&A sheds some more light on the Zerg race and the state StarCraft 2 is in now:

Q: How far in development is SC2? And how much of it will be included in the final version?

A: Nothing’s for certain. It took us such a long time because we were developing other games. Because of our perfectionism we can’t say for sure when SC2 will be released.

Q: I heard there were immense changes to Battle.net. What are these changes?

A: Unfortunately we can’t give away too much on this right now. I can only tell you it’s going along well. Expect great changes!

Q: There’s no Kerrigan in the video. Is the Queen Kerrigan? If not, how is Kerrigan represented? Also the Roach looks like a… roach. People called Paladins from WoW Roaches so is that the reason?

A: The Roach has nothing to do with the Paladin. Kerrigan is a unique unit and will only be playable in the single-player campaign.

Q: How many Starcraft 1 developers are involved in SC2 right now? I heard some developers of C&C were brought over and therefore was not a real sequel to SC1.

A: There are about 12 original developers. It also sticks to the original and is therefore a sequel! We’ve worked hard to make this a fun game and tried to satisfy picky players on multiplayer.

Q: How is the balancing process going?

A: The balancing process is very complicated! That’s why us devs are always playing and balancing the game. Fortunately we have great talents here. We’re planning on getting feedback from this demonstration. We will also balance through patches. Map developers from WC2 are participating in SC2. We can’t tell you much now but you will be able to experience it soon.

Q: I heard SC2 uses a new graphics engine. Can you tell us the specifics?

A: I’m not a graphics expert, but I can tell you we have several advanced graphics techniques being used.

Q: The Zerg scenario ended with the Protoss attacking, but the Terran were conquered for the Protoss assault. Is the sequel loyal to the original storyline? The Queen seems to be used like a hero. Do we have to tech to use it?

A: The storyline is still under development. We can’t give you any details on it yet. The Queen is usable from the beginning and is specialized towards defense. More to come later.

Q: In WWI the Mothership was a super unit and was changed to a normal unit in Blizzcon. Queen has become a superunit so what’s become of the Mothership? Do terrans have a superunit as well? The graphics look great and the system requirements look pretty steep.

A: We can’t tell you anything for certain in the game right now. The Queen’s not really a superunit but really a specialized unit. It’s weak when not defended! It’s not a hero. The sys reqs are low enough so many more users can play. A graphics card with Pixel Shader 2.0 is required.

Q: How will the testing take place? Pro gamers say SC2 feels similar to SC1 and was that a main focus? Or was the focus more on new content?

A: We’re still discussing the best approach to testing. Because SC1 was so loved we’re trying to capture the feel of SC1. However we are adding new content.

Q: Zerg’s Infestor. In SC1 Infestation wasn’t used much. How much will this be used in SC1? Do the infested units count toward population?

A: Infestation is still being tested. We’ve only shown our work in progress. We’re trying to make Infestation a valid tactic in SC2. Supply depots can be infested as well. This will be a useful ability this time around. Currently you can only produce infested marines but that’s subject to change.

Q: SC1’s AI was a bit weak. How’s pathfinding and singleplayer? The Protoss have a cliff walker unit but the Zerg don’t seem to have one. Is there a unit made with this ability? Recently user-made maps are popular but there are some restrictions with licensing. For example making a map unusable is downloaded then changed. Is there a way to secure maps?

A: The devs are working to resolve this issue (AI and pathfinding). But this is still under construction! We can’t tell you anything about what the final build will look like. The Zerg do not have a cliff walker but use Nydus Worms. We’re aware of the problem with securing user-made maps and are considering options to resolve this issue.

Q: You said the development process takes a long time but Activision Blizzard’s CEO Bruce Hack (spelling?) said it’ll be out soon. About when will SC2 be released? And what will happen to SC1’s sales and marketing once SC2 is released?

A: We can’t say when we’ll release. We’ll be going for perfection. Also we have differences with Bruce Hack. However we both want to release this game ASAP. And because we have SC2 it doesn’t mean we’ll forget about SC1. If there’s one user that loves SC1 we’ll keep it going.

Q: As of today, all 3 races have been announced. Each race has strengths and weaknesses. What do you think, as a developer, are the strengths and weaknesses of each of the three races?

A: Us developers don’t focus too much upon strengths and weaknesses. That’s why we don’t add so many unnecessary features. The player is left to decide what the strengths and weaknesses are.

Q: SC1 is more popular in Korea than anywhere else. Will there be any plans to be made with Korea in mind?

A: We know about the popularity in Korea. Because Koreans love competitive gaming we’re trying to make this an e-Sport game. Just revealing the game in Seoul should tell you how much we love the Korean market.

Q: Will there be an event where people can play SC2 in Korea? Also the Observer mode in SC1 was rather lacking. Will SC2 have new features? For other RTS’es the game’s site hosts tournaments and leagues. Will this be done for SC2?

A: It was very important for us to announce the game through WWI and Blizzcon. Therefore we’re planning on having more such conventions. The e-Sports department is doing all that they can to create the best multiplayer experience. This can change depending on the players’ opinions, however. On a side note we’re preparing a WC3 tournament and are expecting to host similar leagues for SC2. However this doesn’t seem like the right time to talk about leagues or tournaments just yet.

 

Where's Ender when you need him

Other notable bits of information from the rush:

* Two new hidden Raynors. In the first picture, Raynor is sitting with his good friends, Zeratul, and both are watching the ensuing Zerg versus Terran battle. In the other, Raynor is watching another battle behind the safety of a giant cactus. Click on the pictures for the full screenshot.

raynorzeratul.JPGraynor.JPG

* A new attack for the Colossus, which has recently been revealed, is shown for the first time:

 

Colossus multi-laser

The StarCraft 2 universe has expanded greatly with the introduction of the third race. New unit and building pages will appear regularly, and Q&As will be full of Zerg goodness. Now that all races look great and are almost fully playable, how far away can the beta be?

 

Zerg. Are. Here.

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50 Comments to “Blizzard’s Rush: 36 Hours of Zerg”


  1. Arthur Santana — March 11, 2008 @ 6:57 pm

    AT LAST!!!

  2. George — March 11, 2008 @ 7:10 pm

    YES! Finally, the Zerg are here!!!!!!

  3. Anonymous2.0 — March 11, 2008 @ 7:52 pm

    Wow, the zerg!!! This is very overwhelming, and looking at these screen shots and seeing all the capabilities of the zerg (At least the ones we are aware of) defiantly will cause many terran and Protoss players to think really hard on their new strategy for fighting this rising race

  4. 1591DH — March 11, 2008 @ 8:24 pm

    This comprehensive post was well worth the wait. Great job!

  5. Ken — March 11, 2008 @ 9:27 pm

    well done!! but I have a few concerns.. other sites say that the lurker NOW attacks when it is HALF-BURROWED therefore it is no longer fully burrowed and can be attacked without a detector. But in the video gameplay, the stalkers don’t seem to attack the “half-burrowed” lurkers. I’m still confused.

    The infestor looks great, its so evil!!!

    The new Corrupter looks like the sentinels in the Matrix. cool!!!

    I’m also interested with the new ROACH unit, I’ve read that it is a fast moving unit, much like an upgraded vulture in BW and heals HP half as fast as the Medic can heal a marine. If this is true, then its way too imba!!!

    I foresee very tough TvZ and PvZ games in the future!!!

  6. great player1 — March 11, 2008 @ 10:47 pm

    Can the corruptor attack both land and air, and it looks like from the gameplay, the corruptor can turn a battlecruiser into an ally very quickly, so if it can do that, all the zerg player needed to do is mass corruptors.

  7. sgtslappy — March 11, 2008 @ 10:52 pm

    Write write up; What I’ve come to expect.

  8. ZERGLOVER — March 11, 2008 @ 10:54 pm

    I really have to say that I am disappointed the queen will be a single unit.

    I also feel that I am dispointed in the zerg…It seems impractical to be them. Their units die instantly and show too little movement to be rounded with the other races. I love they are a swarm, I like the idea they are EASY to kill unless there are many of them and here comes when I find a flaw in rounding out the race.

    If rounded with quick birthing time and cheap to build units awsome.

    PS.

    I love the speed in which some of the Zerg units show

    Is there any way you can pass this on?

  9. Pls Read This, Blizzard — March 12, 2008 @ 12:03 am

    ATTENTION: PLEASE CONSIDER THIS, BLIZZARD! Just watch the video and tell me, how is it possible for Zerg players (I’m one)to produce SO many units if the unit count so far is just 200. Seriouly, I would want to play Zerg with that amount of units but PLEASE increase the unit count if possible. If not, give Zerg a feature that can produce 4 Zerglings with 1 unit count or something like that. The Zergs are great, honetly. You guys have done a good job, but I’m just worried about the unit count.

    PS: We Are The SWARM!!!!!

  10. whiteknight — March 12, 2008 @ 1:05 am

    Man
    there’s rumor about zerg release on 10th

    but your blog show this tread slower than other website
    but

    you did really good job on information

    thx verymuch this is the most useful formation.

  11. Johan — March 12, 2008 @ 3:47 am

    Quote whiteknight:

    There is differens from quality to put things up first.

    This site are SC fans and the guys behind this blog is deeply fans too. So they whant to put out all info at same time with all quality stuff.

    no other site reweals so much that this blog does.

    Sry for bad english, bit its worth the wait.

    FREAKING AWESOME!

    i think transport will be removes because the new nydus worm unit that just transport a small amout of units.

    Because why should zerg transport via the air? when they can burrow and go under.

    i love it, but the zerg structures isnt not like a nextgen look for sc2. but, its looking good also.

  12. SikTh — March 12, 2008 @ 4:28 am

    You’re right, Johan. This is a kickass way to differentiate the Zerg from other races even more! Only ground transportation for the bug race. Though it looks like the Nydus (Shai-Hulud LoL) can only move small units around.

    Does blizz read this site? so much stuff comes from the posts and even comments
    way cool!!!!!!

  13. MechaBeast — March 12, 2008 @ 5:31 am

    Whats the unit spewin brown junk onto the terran bunker in pic 93?

    I liked the lurkers with lond spindle like legs these one seem like they’ve gotten fat lol.

    great update.

  14. SteelVelocity — March 12, 2008 @ 6:45 am

    I have to second #9. I think the unit count should be….. maybe 400. Simply because this is 2008, SC fans deserve it , and “massive battles” as you guys put it, are going to need many, many reinforcements.

  15. SCV_Operator — March 12, 2008 @ 7:19 am

    Some really cool-looking units from the zerg release! I like the new infested terrans, maybe we could get some other infested terran units too? e.g. Infested Ghost (ring any bells?) and how about some protoss infestation? Infested zealots, anyone?

    As for the unit limit, one of the Q&As did say that they haven’t fixed it yet, but that it will be a ‘healthy increase over WC3 unit limit’ and that they will determine max units very near the end of release, based on performance etc. As for me, I think looking after 200 units is going to be hard enough given the size of some of them, and because I think they blend in more with the backgrounds now that the colours have been turned down.

    Great update – keep up the good work!

  16. Anonymous — March 12, 2008 @ 8:12 am

    How are terrans supposed to survive in a dark swarm they have 1 melee damage unit(SCV)?

    200 units cap is fine Zerg are a swarming race of death and disease not an occupation force.

  17. martix — March 12, 2008 @ 8:40 am

    Wow… finally, the swarm was revealed! Was about damn time too!
    Classics are back, Roach is nice, Infestor looks like a Quake 4 contraption, Corruptor looks like a nice squidly, underwatery kind of creature and Ultralisk is just plain awesome! Queen looks like a kick-ass bug…
    And not that I have(or ever had) anything against the general artistic direction of SC2, but I wonder what would happen if they replace the Candy-like look the zerg have now with a more Giger-esque vision.

  18. Atican — March 12, 2008 @ 9:43 am

    I don’t know what was going through their heads when they conceived “The Infestor.” It’s awful. It doesn’t look zerg, its ability is just bizarre and out-of-place, and I can’t say much beyond that except that I’d be incredibly shocked if it makes the final cut. It’s a silly unit. And this isn’t to mention how overpowered the ability seems. Not only do you take the buildings that ate up a bunch of resources for the Terran player, but you get like 5 marines per barracks. If I recall correctly from sc1, you at least had to spend resources to get infested marines.

  19. Rob — March 12, 2008 @ 11:32 am

    god be blessed! the zerg!
    everything is just great, except the new collossus’ attack.. i liked the old one better

  20. RoboChicken — March 12, 2008 @ 12:36 pm

    I LUV ZERG

  21. RoboChicken — March 12, 2008 @ 12:36 pm

    The Ultralisks look like one big beasty kick@$$ unit.

  22. Rai — March 12, 2008 @ 2:05 pm

    The Lurker looks kinda cute now.

    You can see the Overseer in the picture where Raynor and Zeratul is in.

  23. Arthur Santana — March 12, 2008 @ 3:45 pm

    It’s important to remember that none of it is final… I surely doubt the Queen will make it with that many abilities to the end of the story.

    Zergs are mainly rocking, specially zerglings and the Queen. Roaches seem pretty nice too. I have only two things to complain:
    1. Corruptor: it looks nice, but I will miss Scourge… nothing like the orgasmic pleasure of killing Carriers with’em.
    2. Infestor: the abilities are cool (moving burrowed is awesome) but the look of the unit doesn’t please me at all. It looks more like an UNDEAD unit from WC3. Woudn’t it be much nicer if they just took the same abilities and gave them back to the DEFILER?

  24. Arthur Santana — March 12, 2008 @ 3:48 pm

    Oh and I liked old Lurkers better too.

    (on the other hand, Zerglings, Ultralisks and Overlords were greatly redone!!)

  25. sese — March 12, 2008 @ 3:54 pm

    Hi! The High Quality Gameplay Video stops downloading at 96%. Something is wrong with the file.

  26. Ken — March 12, 2008 @ 4:53 pm

    Quoting gretplayer @ 6:

    “Can the corruptor attack both land and air, and it looks like from the gameplay, the corruptor can turn a battlecruiser into an ally very quickly, so if it can do that, all the zerg player needed to do is mass corruptors.”

    No, the corruptor is and Air to Air unit. and the enemy air unit it corrupts will act as a stationary ally to the zerg with relatively slower and less effective damage. Nevertheless, mass corruptors will be imba against carriers and BC’s. Protoss needs more anti-air!!!!

  27. yangon — March 12, 2008 @ 6:08 pm

    Just to remind you, the link to high quality play video and the medium one is reversed.

  28. Joe — March 12, 2008 @ 7:35 pm

    Good work sc2blog!

    However those Q&A questions should be filtered next time!

    I like the infestation route via the corruptor and infestor, however I don’t really like how the two abilities were displayed. I think if the Infestor infested from underground, maybe with tentacles coming up from and taking over the building, that would look a bit better than VOMITING all over it, which, while cool and concise, is just a little odd. The corruptor’s attack should be more like the devourer from sc1, Except like INK from an Octopus, as should the corrupted unit’s attack.

    Would love to see some hydra death animations! And I feel their attack animation was a little too all over the place. They should be contracting! Not waving about the place (especially the ground to air attack)! In sc1 this helped to make the combat a little clearer. Hopefully they’ll have a similar idle to sc1 also :)

    The zerglings sound fantastic, from some first person youtube videos of the pros. They sound like evil jackals! So awesome!

    The queen has me worried. I hope to see it reworked a lot. I’m not really sure that it fits, even more so than I was about the mothership/thor.

    Wanted to see marines getting thrown around by the ultralisk! Hopefully, the mutalisk’s wing flap is shown in tune with it’s locomotion!

    I’m totally just ranting opinions here :) I’ll stop now!

  29. BarGamer — March 12, 2008 @ 11:15 pm

    So much info, I can barely process it all! However, I do have some possible skill interaction questions:

    Can you combo the Overlord’s Create Creep ability and the Queen’s Toxic Creep ability? Can you use the Queen’s Deep Tunnel and Swarm Infestation abilities on an Infested Building? Similarly, can the Queen build Defensive Structures and/or Drones mutate into structures on Overlord-created Creep? Once burrowed there, is a Nydus Worm “stuck”?

    Are there no replacements for the Queen’s former abilities, like Spawn Broodling, Parasite, and Ensnare?

    Bets that the Super-Unit is gonna be a Cerebrate, a Xel’Naga, or a new Zerg-ed Alien Race we haven’t seen yet?

  30. sese — March 12, 2008 @ 11:46 pm

    I can’t download the high qual. gasmeplay video, something is wrong with the file/servers. downloading stops at 96%. pls. do something :)

  31. Inquisitor — March 13, 2008 @ 6:57 am

    Really nice units. Lurker looked more cool in SC1 I think. Ideas like moving underground, nyduswork and the puking units are awesome.

    I can´t wait to make a Funguscraft 2, if anyone remembers 😛

    Don´t get mad for the things I will write, I like the other games I will mention, but I like SC more, but I would at the same time like to see it possible, to have the animations a little bit more developed in SC2.
    I really hope, when they have decided which units will go to the final version, that they make more animations.
    To see the units interract with eachother in battle, like #28
    “Wanted to see marines getting thrown around by the ultralisk!”
    The marine just stands there, shooting at the Ultralisks which seems to never hit the marine.
    And a zealot charging a marine, striking it with psyblades or what´s it called, and the marine just standing there, taking it like a marine 😛
    It doesn´t look alive..
    And I also hope they will make banking of airunits and the turning of vehicles in another way, and not static like it is now and always has been.
    DoW and SupCom has evolved really really much and has more intense battles, and I would love to see it in SC, but I guess that the e-sport will keep it from developing in this area.
    Blizzard should make 2 versions..
    One with greater battles and nicer animations, and one for e-sports with more micromanagement and tiny explosions so that you always see all your units 😛

  32. Inquisitor — March 13, 2008 @ 9:48 am

    3 more things:

    I also noticed the zerglingsounds and they are really nice.

    The guys who make the textures and doodads to the terrain, do a fantastic job. All the beautiful details.

    In screen:
    http://www.sc2blog.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/98_hr.jpg
    And in SC of course, a tank firing its arclite cannon (I think its the name for the artillery), fires up into the sky when the shell at the same time hits the ground in front of the tank. It looks like its another tank somewhere else firing that shot. Why not make the cannon point at the enemy when firing close. Would look better I believe.

  33. Zetaras Xal'Kurat — March 13, 2008 @ 10:12 am

    Here’s an alternate download location, for those of you who are having problems:

    Gameplay Video [HD]
    Cinematic Intro Video [HD]

  34. Dill — March 13, 2008 @ 10:18 am

    Thoughts on units:

    Zergling, Hydralisk, ultralisk, Lurker: Returning units, not much to say. their abilities seem to make sense, and ultralisk AoE and burrow seems more likely to make them used than they were before.

    Baneling, Roach: These seem like nice ideas for units, Roachs fit perfectly with the starcraft 2 “passive but game changing” abilities that the terran and protoss units seem to have. Banelings aeem nice, actually watching the zerg gameplay videos seem to suggest that banelings are more easily balanced than I had though they would be.

    Infestor, Corruptor: These seem kind of iffy. I can see how they could be fun, but it also seems the zerg could have come up with other passive but cool air abilities, or infestation effects. (Infestation does seem a bit fast in the video, though cloak detection and good targetting may shut it down pretty well.)

    Queen: I also like how this unit is handled. It seems odd that the zerg would not be able to just build their own defenses, but otherwise a “hive defender” unit seems like a neat idea.

    Swarm guardian: Guardians are one of the zerg units that it seemed more likely than not would come back, though with some changes. Broodlings seem an odd effect to add, though, I’ll have to see more how this works.

    Art: In general I like how the zerg units look, and I have a feeling that as more information comes out we will be better able to tell the units apart. (In starcraft 1, I was not able to tell zerglings and hydralisks from each other too well until actually playing some of the early zerg and terran missions)The game looks much better with things moving, attacking, and such than it does stationary.

    They seem to have stuck pretty well with the “Moovers and Shooters” described earlier, Roaches and corrupters seem to fit, but there does seem to be a bit of spellcaster creep coming into the game more.

  35. Anonymous — March 13, 2008 @ 10:55 am

    Doesn’t it seem like Roaches are miniature versions of the old Ultralisks while the new Ultralisks are bigger versions of them ? I’m not sure why Zerg need both of them right now, except to throw more stuff under a Dark Swarm.
    I’d like to know the Zerg tech tree. Also, Roaches were conspicuously absent from the gameplay video.

  36. Dill — March 13, 2008 @ 12:37 pm

    I disagree on roaches just being mini ultralisks, although they will seem similar in terms of being hard ot kill units, the methods for killing them will be different, and some other fighting styles will be different as well. (Ultralisks will most likely handle focus fire better from small damage enemies, for example, and large chunks of damage, while roaches will be better able to recover from lots of battles, and will be more punishing to people who do not micromanage well. At least that is now it seems to break down.)

  37. Arthur Santana — March 13, 2008 @ 3:19 pm

    Roaches are more like Vultures than like Ultralisks.

  38. Ken — March 13, 2008 @ 4:27 pm

    Quoting arthur santana:

    “Roaches are more like vultures than like Ultralisks.”

    I totally agree. It would have been better though if they show the roach in the gameplay a little bit more. We know very little about it. Even the new Ovies are not shown.

  39. Dill — March 13, 2008 @ 6:35 pm

    Having one of those browder demonstrations migth have been kind of neat.

    “The lurker is a returning unit from starcraft, and it still burrows and attacks with rows of sharp spines that deal splash damage to all units in a line. The neemy is now sending his stalkers in to attack, and has foolishly not brought along any detection, allowing our lurkers to tear them up with ease and force them to blink away.”

  40. SCV_Operator — March 14, 2008 @ 4:50 am

    Definitely second that, Dill – I’d have liked a commentary with the gameplay video.

    And from an aesthetic point of view, tanks that aim at their targets and ships that bank in the air would be great. whether this would put too much strain on a game designed to run on a wide range of systems is another matter.

  41. Dill — March 14, 2008 @ 9:08 am

    whoops, “neemy” in the previous post should be “enemy”. (The example commentary could be better also, though it seems ot get the point across.)

  42. Joe — March 14, 2008 @ 7:07 pm

    I also thought the roaches were mini ultralisks, or ultrazerglings, from the screenshots alone. I think they are visible in the gameplay at the superbattle at the end.

    The roaches seem a little odd to me – just a ground based unit that regenerates quickly.. Maybe if they could move while burrowed as well, that would make them more exciting to me! But as others have said, we haven’t really seen them in action, so it’s too early to pick it apart.

    Regarding the missing commentary, maybe there’s still one to come? Although I personally didn’t like the fella’s voice – he sounds too marketing-speak for a my tastes! Although they should do another one (20 minutes! with all units!) just to be consistent.

  43. Joe Matt — March 19, 2008 @ 3:16 am

    Some aesthetic points:

    + points: Corruptor has sinister sexy movement animation,
    -the queen distinguishes zerg gameplay-wise and is burgled barefaced from aliens, class.
    – Nydus worm is a cool concept for zerg transportation and looks rawsome. -Ultralisk attack is badass powerful yo.

    – points: Corruptor and Infestor are laughable names. They sound like slayer songs. Is blizzard alluding to obscure metal bands from the eighties that no-one can remember or are they just strapped for monikers? (Or both?) Seriously man: INFESTOR! (cue guitar/bass pounding)
    -I could imagine Ash Ketchum commanding the new lurker in battle but not Kerrigan
    – Infestor design is Kentaro Miura level URGH. It looks like a pitlord who was pretending to be a demon hunter when he got his head cut off, and subsequently sprouted extraneous legs/mouths. His infest ability strongly evokes explosive/ projectile dysentry. It would be embaressing to field these corpulent zits. I heartily approve of the zerg being repulsive but this is simply tacky.
    Finally – buildings. The zerg base now resembles a clearasil commercial. I cannot view the hatchery/lair as anything but immense, rosy turds. The others are plastic enough to be mcdonalds toys. It is not the actual architecture so much as the fact they are not interacting with the surface at all, zerg buildings should be alive, have an entire gastrointestinal mess beneath them; bifurcated arteries palpitating the entangled creep, fields of waving epethelia fanning out from the radioactive green, cascading endocrine pools.
    It makes sense for the toss/terran to have neat distinction betweem terrain and structure (warping in, aerial migration) but the zerg should look like an embedded organ system, vile and interconnected. Vivify these happy meals blizzard.

    -Note: I know the zerg are still morphing, and this is not meant to mock the dev team who I’m sure are sweating to make this game all it can be, I simply wanted to convey the full distaste that my reaction included so as to provide honest feedback. Mad props sc2 team, you are the rad.

  44. Blacklizard — March 20, 2008 @ 2:38 pm

    I wholeheartedly agree about the Infester needing a graphic overhaul. That unit is far and away the one unit out of all the races that just really really doesn’t fit, IMO. Same for the infest ability… it does indeed look like poop. Neat idea, but it just isn’t delivering.

    Queen, Corrupter, Ultralisk, and Mutas all look great. Most units look very good really. The only unit I’ll complain about other than the Infester is the roach. I’m fine with making it easy to distinguish from other units, but right now it looks awkward instead of scary, creepy, or Zergish.

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