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…the future. But not just any arbitrary future. There is an actual date, as well as plans for releasing additional StarCraft 2 Beta Keys to accommodate Blizzard’s hunger for crowdsourced QA.

Stefanie GwinnerFew, if any, had doubts about the upcoming beta, and considering the fact that many of us already got our hands on a StarCraft 2 Beta Key, its eventual arrival  is almost inevitable. However, this is the first time that a reliable source has received a confirmation about an existing timetable directly from Xordiah -  Blizzard’s European RTS Community Manager.

The original source is the massive German 4Players.de website, and the report’s key points were accurately translated by IncGamer’s SCWire.

  • Blizzard has a fixed date for the beta. However, it’s still a secret.
  • The multiplayer part of the game is basically done except for a few details.
  • There will be several more opportunities to participate in the beta to come (including competitions, perhaps a kind of story competition or similar).
  • In the current build (internally at Blizzard), there is a Dark Pylon with a cool ability, which enables Probes to harvest faster within the reach of the Pylon.
  • The Command Center now has a new, cool ability that creates a “bigger” SCV, which is better at harvesting.
  • Supply Depots can be upgraded to give +2 Supply.
  • Xordiah, who is a “Protoss Fetishist”, is very happy.
  • This build’s Immortals are extremely strong.

The above list is full of good news. Blizzard has already handed out thousands of beta keys, and as it seems, will hand out many more via various competitions which will be run on official fansites and on Battle.net. The SC2Blog will likely have a chance to hand out more beta keys via competitions, similar to the one we held in September, which sent 4 of our readers to BlizzCon.

We're gonna need a bigger SCV, sir.

It’s interesting to see that Blizzard’s recent balance tinkering touched upon resource gathering, with both Protoss and Terran receiving perks – the Protoss Dark Pylon and the super-SCV are mentioned strictly as economy buffs. This is clearly an attempt to elaborate the “Macro” portion of the game, which, as many of those who’ve had a chance to play say, is lacking. Blizzard’s previous attempt, involving the new gas mechanics, has accumulated an impressive amount of negative feedback. Will these changes bring about the extra complexity demanded by the StarCraft pros?


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