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#1 Edited by mellotronrules (1247 posts) -

alright gang, just had my first 5 hour binge. REAL TALK:

-production values are still there (and very good)

-the writing is still pretty weak (although i'm only a quarter of the way through according to the mission count)

-the voicework for your female-ish counterpart on the leviathan is TERRIBLE (i can't tell if it was the actor or the direction, but god is it soulless- an not in a good way. she sounds like someone doing a bad robot impersonation)

-how gross is that evolution dude (answer: so gross).

-still really enjoying the custom-built feeling of each campaign mission

-haven't touched the multi yet.

IN SUMMATION: it's almost exactly what i expected, and that's a fine thing.

now your turn- GO!

#2 Posted by KaosAngel (13764 posts) -

CE comes in from UPS, and Blizzard shutdown Battle.net for Diablo III.

So yeah.

#3 Posted by SlashDance (1843 posts) -

-still really enjoying the custom-built feeling of each campaign mission

Sold.

#4 Posted by LornHg (43 posts) -

>Why haven't you touch the multi ?? It's the only thing that counts : )

#5 Edited by Winternet (8055 posts) -

So, what's the strategy equivalent to "make marines, make medics and win" in HOTS?

#6 Posted by Olu (95 posts) -

terruble plot aside lovin' it so far. I just wish there was more zerg buddies to chat with on Leviathan.

#7 Edited by Giefcookie (611 posts) -

Finished it on Normal just now, If you have played any SC2 before I advice to go straight to Hard.

I really, really enjoyed the evolution and customization aspect of your units and Kerrigan, even though after I found a build I liked I just stuck with it.

I thought the plot was on par with the usual Blizzard stuff, nothing that would blow your mind but enough to keep wanting to see more of it.

@winternet said:

So, what's the strategy equivalent to "make marines, make medics and win" in HOTS?

Since you have Kerrigan to command for about 90% of the missions, my winning strategy was making a few queens, having them follow her around and just blast everything to pieces with her powers. Kerrigan's main ability one-shots most stuff including Siege tanks on normal so you can just blast through waves of enemies. It makes you feel like a badass but kinda takes any challenge out of it. Hopefully Hard pumps up the enemy health and damage enough to make you choose a proper unit balance etc.

Overall it was totally worth the 40€. Though its weird to be paying more for an expansion than a full retail game. Guess its that Blizzard premium pricing.

#8 Posted by TheSouthernDandy (3924 posts) -

Can't play till work is over and I AM NOT HAPPY! Only the new Bowie album is keeping me from freaking out.

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#9 Posted by Scroll (601 posts) -

@giefcookie: My copy was pretty cheap off Amazon, less than I bought WoL for at release.

Oh and I like the new music.

#10 Edited by Ravenlight (8011 posts) -

So, what's the strategy equivalent to "make marines, make medics and win" in HOTS?

Hellbats. Hellbats all the time.

#11 Posted by Bocam (3823 posts) -

I can't stop laughing over the fact that Blizzard made Kerrigan a yandere.

#12 Edited by haffy (674 posts) -

@bocam said:

I can't stop laughing over the fact that Blizzard made Kerrigan a yandere.

I don't want to go too much into spoilers, but I really don't see that in her as a character yet. Does something massive change at the end?

I'm about 20 missions in on brutal and really enjoying it. Going to take a break from single player for a bit and play some 1v1s.

#13 Posted by Bocam (3823 posts) -

@haffy: I should have looked at the definition (which is wrong) the GB Wiki used before linking it. I was mostly just talking about how Kerrigan acts during the cutscene after the end of mission 2

#14 Edited by Wunder_ (1171 posts) -

Finished the campaign. I have extremely mixed feelings about the campaign, but I think upon further reflection the story is objectively worse than WoL. I won't go into details but man... Fuck that shit.

#15 Posted by KaosAngel (13764 posts) -

Punched in the serial code and the game froze on the second mission when the Archangel comes out.

Fuck it. I'm making lunch.

#16 Edited by Scrumdidlyumptious (1641 posts) -
#17 Posted by csl316 (9453 posts) -
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#18 Edited by L1GHTN1N (546 posts) -

I'm about 7 missions in (Just finished Char), feeling really mixed about it. The first mission was pretty cool, but after that has been kind of eh. Lots of the same mission types as WoL, the 3rd mission is the exact same "Defend until extraction!" mission but fighting Terran instead of Zerg, and they had one where you had to go out and gather items while competing against the AI just like that one in WoL when you get the Hellions. Also damn the story is dumb.

However, it is still more StarCraft II, and I do love me some StarCraft II.

#19 Posted by StarvingGamer (8555 posts) -

I played like 5 missions and I can't wait for my family to fall asleep so I can stay up until 4 AM and try to take care of my daughter tomorrow as zombie daddy.

#20 Edited by FluxWaveZ (19388 posts) -

18 missions in. I enjoyed some early parts of the story and the whole Zerus chapter is pretty awesome, but I can't believe how much of this is about Raynor and Kerrigan's relationship.

Best supporting character so far is Abathur. Speech patterns are like Mordin Solus'. Also, in the beginning, Izsha's voice really distracted me because it's pretty much Aigis.

I'm playing on Normal, and it's stupidly easy. Actually gets pretty boring at times, so maybe I should have been playing on Hard so there was at least a bit of challenge to it.

#21 Posted by ThatFrood (3395 posts) -

ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE

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#22 Edited by Wunder_ (1171 posts) -

ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE

Dehaka is my fav

#23 Edited by niko555 (124 posts) -

ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE ESSENCE

SO MUCH DAMN ESSENCE IN THIS GAME!

#24 Edited by Olu (95 posts) -

@olu said:

I just wish there was more zerg buddies to chat with on Leviathan.

Man, i take that back. There is like a circus onboard of my ship now

#25 Posted by YI_Orange (1172 posts) -

Sounds exactly like I expected. I can't wait to pick this up and dive into the campaign.

@fluxwavez: I plan to play on Brutal, as I did with WoL(before I was anywhere near good at the game. I went back and played through the campaign 1 or 2 more times and it was so much easier on subsequent playthroughs). And it was a ton of fun. Granted, I love Blizzard campaigns in general. Back in the WC III days I played through both of those campaigns probably like 3 times at least.

As for the story and writing, I don't really care that it's bad. I don't tend to be as critical of these types of things as most people it seems, so I'll probably find it to be good enough to not make me hate myself while playing it. I'll find the kicks and emphasize them. Bummer to hear that it's so heavy on Raynor and Kerrigan being relationshippy though. I kinda really hope this series decides fuck it and makes the Zerg win or something crazy like that. At the very least don't redeem Kerrigan, let her be evil in the end.FOR THE LOVE OF GOD DO NOT UNITE THE ZERG WITH THE OTHER RACES.

Anyway, probably gonna get someone to spot me some money today and dive in so I'll have some real thoughts on it later.

#26 Edited by ZeeL (37 posts) -

I'm loving the multi. The viper is a killer late game unit, one that has been needed since WoL launched. It adds so much depth and possibilities that previously just weren't there. In any case, I'm still sad that ZvZ is still just a nightmare of who is faster and gets the better baneling hit, and is over in usually just a few minutes. Hopefully someday there will be other options to explore. I mean, blizz finally got rid of the stupid PvP, who's the better 4gater last year, so I haven't given up hope.

#27 Edited by baldgye (757 posts) -

The SP is actually quite alot of fun tbf... alot more fun than I remember WoL being

#28 Edited by mellotronrules (1247 posts) -

halfway now- just finished zerus. also noticing they're doing a little recycling of campaign missions- the zerus one collecting meat is almost identical to the WoL one with collecting the terrazine gas.

kerrigan going full zerg again is sooooooooo dumb. wtf was the point of saving her in the first place

#29 Edited by haffy (674 posts) -

halfway now- just finished zerus. also noticing they're doing a little recycling of campaign missions- the zerus one collecting meat is almost identical to the WoL one with collecting the terrazine gas.

kerrigan going full zerg again is sooooooooo dumb. wtf was the point of saving her in the first place

She is different than in WOL.

#30 Edited by MentalDisruption (1670 posts) -

Loving the campaign so far. I like it a lot more than the WoL campaign, but I'm not a huge fan of terran anyway. They really do well in making missions which emphasize the core traits of zerg mechanics from what I've seen so far. I'm a little dissapointed that queens in the campaign are different from multiplayer queens. First mission I was so confused as to why my spine crawlers weren't instantly getting health back. :(

@mellotronrules said:

halfway now- just finished zerus. also noticing they're doing a little recycling of campaign missions- the zerus one collecting meat is almost identical to the WoL one with collecting the terrazine gas.

kerrigan going full zerg again is sooooooooo dumb. wtf was the point of saving her in the first place

There's a couple reasons why that whole overall sequence with kerrigan is important, and it gets explained more later.

#31 Posted by StarvingGamer (8555 posts) -

@mellotronrules said:

halfway now- just finished zerus. also noticing they're doing a little recycling of campaign missions- the zerus one collecting meat is almost identical to the WoL one with collecting the terrazine gas.

kerrigan going full zerg again is sooooooooo dumb. wtf was the point of saving her in the first place

There's a couple reasons why that whole overall sequence with kerrigan is important, and it gets explained more later.

I felt it was perfectly well explained immediately after the mission, and foreshadowed a fair bit beforehand as well.

#32 Posted by mellotronrules (1247 posts) -

@starvinggamer:oh sure, it's explained. but from a writing perspective, it just seems really sloppy. to me anyway. the whole "i moved heaven and earth to bring you back sarah...etc."


that said i am only halfway. so we'll see how the back half is. doesn't take away from the game one iota, fortunately. still great fun!

#33 Edited by TheSouthernDandy (3924 posts) -

I just finished the Zerus missions, haven't touched mp yet. I'm also kinda bummed that she's gone full Zerg again.. I'm not gonna get too upset, I'm sure it'll make sense down the road as the story unfolds. I hope. But for now I'm kinda...eh...about it. Aside from that really enjoying it so far all the upgrades and evolution missions are real cool.

Also is it just me or is Trisha Helfer not really doing a great job with this roll? I like her but her VA in this game has been pretty not great. I don't remember having a problem with her in WoL but maybe that's cause she wasn't in it nearly as much.

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#34 Posted by TheHT (11786 posts) -

sweet! i'll have to get this soon. i didn't touch it after beating it, but i enjoyed wings of liberty.

#35 Posted by Bwast (1342 posts) -

@mellotronrules: I agree, very sloppy. As soon as she learns that Jim is supposedly dead she just becomes the queen again with no real internal debate about it. When Zeratul shows up and is all "You must become even more zergy, blah blah blah." she's just like "OKAY!". I get that she has to do what she does but I would've liked to have seen more reticence on her part. Also Blizzard's thing of using multiple words to describe the same thing like "You will be conquered. Destroyed. Shattered." and the constant theme of "This power is the most power I've ever seen! It's so powerful!" is really dumb. It's like watching DBZ. The thing that really made me shake my head though was that boss fight on Zerus - it's just Belial from D3. Fuck.

Story is garbage but the gameplay is fun. I wish I had played on hard, the campaign was extremely easy. I remember WoL giving me some trouble near the end but here I just 1a2a3a'd my way to the credits. I have no desire to play 1v1 multiplayer. I'll probably play some team games with friends. Could be fun.

#36 Posted by mrpandaman (872 posts) -

@zeel said:

I'm loving the multi. The viper is a killer late game unit, one that has been needed since WoL launched. It adds so much depth and possibilities that previously just weren't there. In any case, I'm still sad that ZvZ is still just a nightmare of who is faster and gets the better baneling hit, and is over in usually just a few minutes. Hopefully someday there will be other options to explore. I mean, blizz finally got rid of the stupid PvP, who's the better 4gater last year, so I haven't given up hope.

And if you survive the early stages of ling/bling vs ling/bling it becomes muta/ling vs muta/ling because infestors aren't as good anymore and then the minute you see hydras to combat the mutas you just get more banelings. It's mirror matchup so yeah... and it kind of sucks for zerg as I find they have the least varied openings and also see them as the weakest of the 3 right now. With how Zerg is designed, it's kind of hard to see other options in the beginning without it turning into ling battles or adding a new tier 1 unit that is easy to get out that is also not the roach.

#37 Posted by baldgye (757 posts) -

I don't know why people have such a hard time with the story, it all made sense to me, was fairly well signposted in previous games and makes sense in the grander story

Kerigan is the one who can stop the shaddow thing from WoL if I remember, how she gona do that as a ghost rather than the Super Queen of Blades?

#38 Edited by Fredchuckdave (6154 posts) -

Last level on Brutal is the hardest RTS level of all time (rest of the campaign is roughly on par with WoL, I'm too good at RTS' to tell the difference unless they really push you), "hard" difficulty is much harder than the WoL version, story's better than WoL; just sucks early on from the damage control they had to do. Supreme is the best "Hero" map in any RTS period; better than any Dawn of War level etc.

There's a few clunkers in the campaign (like the first level) but overall still extremely high quality stuff and some really excellent cutscenes. The Leviathan is not as interesting as the Hyperion, no Arcade Machine, and Abathur is the only good character on your ship for much of the game. Evolution stuff is awesome though maybe a little binary; it's not XCOM where almost everything is incredibly obvious but generally one is somewhat better than the other in terms of permanent switches; but hey at least they let you try out both before you pick. The stuff that you can change is all great; Kerrigan's leveling system and upgrade system are both the best of their kind.

I suspect the story is going to be terrible for the third game unless they make Amon into Iago or something.

@winternet: Depends on the map, obviously Normal is super easy so don't play on normal. Hydra/Roach/Zergling is your bread and butter for most of the game; eventually (like, way later) hydra/ultra surpasses it, but Muta spam also works wonders for some levels and zergling/queen is remarkably effective. Only used Vipers once; since I had forgotten that I had Kerrigan's top tier ability unlocked.

#39 Posted by ThatFrood (3395 posts) -

Impaler hydralisks made the game super easy for me. The AI just cannot fucking deal with them at all. Hell, I didn't even have too many air defense units because kerrigan fucking tears through shit in the last few levels.

Also, somebody buy Metzen a thesaurus. The number of times I heard the word "essence" repeated by every single goddamn character...

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#40 Posted by Fredchuckdave (6154 posts) -

@thatfrood: Try the last level on Brutal. For anyone else, whether you're good at RTS or not you should definitely try the level Supreme on Hard/Brutal as it makes the bosses much more interesting; no base building or micromanagement needed.

#41 Posted by TheMasterDS (2138 posts) -

I quite enjoyed it. Solid. Missions still as creative as ever, story telling still as cinemative and, way I see it, successful as ever, structure reinvented in interesting ways that make sense for Zerg. Satisfying. Feel good they didn't screw it up. Looking forward to trying my hand at Multiplayer maybe and see what the pros do with it.

#42 Posted by StarvingGamer (8555 posts) -

Impaler hydralisks made the game super easy for me. The AI just cannot fucking deal with them at all. Hell, I didn't even have too many air defense units because kerrigan fucking tears through shit in the last few levels.

Also, somebody buy Metzen a thesaurus. The number of times I heard the word "essence" repeated by every single goddamn character...

That's because it's "Essence" not "essence"

#43 Edited by Seppli (10250 posts) -

For some reason my SCII install refused to upgrade to HotS from my boxcopy at first, so I had to delete it all, and reinstall via Battlenet download. Then I remembered that I haven't played SCII in over a year, bearly remember the story of Wings of Liberty, and have forgotten all my most basic SCII skills.

So I am currently replaying Wings of Liberty on Normal (I got all achievements, and beat the game on hard initially), and I'm loving it. This way, Heart of Swarm will have full impact. Looking forward to getting to know Sarah better. I'll do you right!

btw. is it normal that my online persona and all my achievements disappeared? I deleted the whole SCII folder, because something was severly broken with the install, and all the records of my previous time spent with the game have vanished. Wouldn't such things be stored in the cloud?

#44 Edited by BombKareshi (979 posts) -

The comments so far are pretty much confirming my expectations of HotS, which means I won't be getting it after all. The multiplayer is too hardcode for me, and the campaign has taken such a disappointing direction for me. Does anyone remember this quote?

It may not be tomorrow, darlin'. It may not even happen with an army at my back. But rest assured: I'm the man who's going to kill you some day.

I wish they would have built on this instead of going the other way.

#45 Edited by Fredchuckdave (6154 posts) -

@themasterds: Funny thing is about 10 of the campaign missions are essentially revamped Used Map Settings maps from Brood War; but SC2 has never had anything really scratch the surface due to the terribly uncreative playerbase in comparison. No reason for the old guys to do it since they could just make indy games or work directly for Blizzard and the new generation just doesn't have the chops to make good maps, or if they do they never make it through the impenetrable popularity system.

@bombkareshi: She can't be the chosen one and fulfill the all story if she dies! Raynor's great in HotS; though his most memorable appearance is a bit more interesting for a few brief seconds. On that note Kerrigan seems to have joined the Triumvirate of Invincibility alongside Zeratul and Raynor; so now there's one per race! Even in her weird mass murdering but yet occasionally compassionate way she's still more interesting than new characters not named Tychus and Abathor. If they're going to MMOify Starcraft then those are your faction leads; with Artanis maybe making an appearance. Valerian has MMO character written all over him.

#47 Posted by haffy (674 posts) -

@seppli: You might be on the wrong region. Each region has different achievements and ladder MMR etc.

#48 Posted by Zirilius (730 posts) -

@bombkareshi: She can't be the chosen one and fulfill the all story if she dies! Raynor's great in HotS; though his most memorable appearance is a bit more interesting for a few brief seconds. On that note Kerrigan seems to have joined the Triumvirate of Invincibility alongside Zeratul and Raynor; so now there's one per race! Even in her weird mass murdering but yet occasionally compassionate way she's still more interesting than new characters not named Tychus and Abathor. If they're going to MMOify Starcraft then those are your faction leads; with Artanis maybe making an appearance. Valerian has MMO character written all over him.

I think it lays the foundation for it for definitely once the second expansion and the SC2 trilogy concludes but I also think everything is dependent on how Project Titan shapes up.

#49 Edited by ThatFrood (3395 posts) -

@fredchuckdave: That's what I did. Played through the first half of the campaign on hard and then increased the difficulty to brutal. I had to restart a few missions but otherwise, smooth sailing. I'm serious when I say the AI can't deal with impaler hydralisks.

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#50 Posted by Fredchuckdave (6154 posts) -

@thatfrood: It's not the AI they just don't use detectors offensively for whatever reason, granted defending raynor and your expansion simultaneously is next to impossible without lurkers/impalers so if they did use detectors or nuke spam you you'd run into serious trouble; it's very easy to make the last level completely impossible with a couple of minor tweaks (which conveniently you could do yourself).