Starcraft II 10th Anniversary Game Updates
July 27, 2020
Ten years of base races, marine splits, cannon rushes, and baneling busts. Ten years of galaxy-stretching adventures with Kerrigan, Zeratul, Jim Raynor, and Artanis. Ten years of player-created tower defense maps, MOBAs, campaigns, and competitive ladder maps. For the past 10 years, we’ve seen StarCraft II evolve, both as a game and a community, and now it’s time to celebrate.
To commemorate this decade of comradery in the Koprulu Sector, we’re introducing some player-requested features to the game, along with a few extras we hope you’ll enjoy:
A DECADE OF PLAYER CREATIONS
Since StarCraft II entered beta in 2010, you’ve pushed the boundaries of what could be done in the Galaxy Engine, published unbelievably creative and complex maps and mods, and shared them with the world. Now, let’s keep it going. With the anniversary update, we’re adding a suite of editor improvements and tools to put more power in your hands. But before we dig into what’s new, let’s take a moment to appreciate some of the incredible endeavors our community has undertaken over the past 10 years of modding:
- Direct Strike: Since its inaugural appearance as the “Desert Strike HotS” mod, Direct Strike has remained as one of the most popular maps in the StarCraft II Arcade. Community developer Tya’s mod tests your strategic unit choices, careful positioning, and economy management in a competitive tug-of-war battle.
- Squadron Tower Defense: This hugely popular tower defense mod is a perfect example of what makes this chaotic and strategic genre compelling. Create structures, manage resources, and have fun with friends while protecting your security system.
- StarCrafts: The YouTube animation channel Carbot created a graphics update mod where you can step into the high-contrast world seen in their videos. Battle with tongue-lolling zerglings, over-excited ultralisks, and enemy-zapping packs of plucky probes.
- Odyssey: A custom campaign from creator Luis Rocha, StarCraft Odyssey takes you to the distant Kardyan Quadrant where you’ll learn what it takes to lead a band of Terran Marines known as the Hell’s Rejects on a multi-act journey of survival and story-driven discovery.
- Player-Created Ladder Maps: Some of the most iconic StarCraft II maps weren’t created at the desks of our designers, but rather by you, the community. Cloud Kingdom LE, Daybreak, and Overgrowth (just to name a few) will go down in history alongside countless others as the arenas where esports history and our own ladder triumphs were made.
EDITOR IMPROVEMENTS AND NEW FEATURES
Your feedback has been loud and clear: the editor should be easier to use. As part of our anniversary update, we’re absorbing a host of ease-of-use and customization elements from the Warcraft III editor into the StarCraft II editor. Our largest editor patch to date, these changes will not only relieve some of the frustrations common when creating maps and mods, but will also unlock a ton of new functionality and features. Check out the details over on the PTR patch notes blog, but be sure to warm up your scrolling finger beforehand —there’s a LOT of new stuff.
We’ve seen your unmatched creativity in the custom campaigns made with the StarCraft II editor, not just from a storytelling and gameplay perspective, but also in how you’ve manipulated the editor to build your worlds. To make your lives easier, and to open up the editor for more stories and creative campaigns, we’ve added a new Arcade map genre: Campaign.
With this addition, custom campaigns will now support map-to-map loading. This means that many previously offline-only campaigns will be accessible through the StarCraft II Arcade. This also means that players will be able to introduce co-op custom campaigns in addition to their single-player experiences.
NEW CAMPAIGN ACHIEVEMENTS
While only four years had passed in the Koprulu Sector, the StarCraft II story campaign was our return to the ever-familiar war between three space-faring races after a nearly 11-year hiatus. Stepping out of Mar Sara and back into the Hyperion, we united under the banner of Raynor’s Raiders in the first of three campaigns, Wings of Liberty. Next, in Heart of the Swarm, we led Kerrigan’s newly recovered Zerg Swarm to battle against the brutal Dominion forces and the encroaching evil of the Void. Finally, with Artanis at the helm of the Golden Armada, Legacy of the Void wrapped up the StarCraft II trilogy with a battle to oppose the oncoming darkness before it consumed the galaxy.
Now. . . it’s time to go back. The 10th anniversary update will add brand-new achievements for every mission in the StarCraft II campaigns, including the Nova Covert Ops mission pack. Relive the story, discover new ways to play, and earn the Stone Announcer for completing every new achievement.
PRESTIGE TALENTS FOR CO-OP COMMANDERS
Adding mastery talents to Co-op commanders was our effort to reward those of you who really dug into this game mode and wanted ways to customize and experiment while playing. There’s room for more, though. Now, you can replay the level 1–15 progression for each maxed-out commander up to three times, and earn a new Prestige Talent each time you complete it. These Prestige Talents can completely change the way your commanders play, opening tons of new gameplay options and strategic decisions. Here are a few examples:
We’ve shown you the big stuff, but let’s talk micro. In the sparse (but impactful) words of Abathur “Make faster, stronger… Evolution never over.” Ten years in, we still believe that StarCraft II is an ever-evolving game, with features and improvements we can add to upgrade the quality of life for players in every mode. Here are just a couple additions coming with this patch, but you can expect to see more in the future:
- Countdown to Start Timer
- This feature adds a short countdown to the start of a StarCraft II matchmade game. Now, players aren’t immediately dropped into gameplay after the loading screen.
- Choose Game Server in Custom Lobbies
- When creating a new custom lobby, you can now select the game server where the lobby is hosted. This is particularly valuable for online tournaments and for players connecting from across the world.
Thank you for being a part of our community during the incredible decade we’ve spent together on the ladder, in the editor, and throughout the Koprulu Sector. Now, on to 10 more— GLHF!
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Created by Mythic
Warcraft III: Reforged Developer Update – Ranked Play
- Jul 22, 2020
July 22, 2020
Greetings Warcraft III: Reforged players!
Since our last update, we’ve released a variety of changes to Warcraft III: Reforged with our 1.32.6 PTR and patch. From a major balance update, to more bug and desync fixes as well as additional matchmaking improvements, our quest to make Reforged ever better continues.
As we mentioned in our last Developer Update, we’d like to continue sharing details and insights on our ongoing development plans for Warcraft III: Reforged alongside each patch. For this installment, we wanted to give you a look at the changes we have in store for our highest-priority feature addition currently under development: Ranked Play.
When revisiting our designs for Ranked Play, we established a set of primary goals to guide our decision-making. Fundamentally, Ranked Play should provide a clear and trustworthy way for players to gauge their level of skill, as well as the skill of other players. In support of this, we’ve opted to make players’ ranks linked directly to their MMRs, rather than using a more detached, progression-based system. Additionally, while Ranked Play is the most competitive way to play Warcraft III: Reforged, it’s also important for us to ensure that this experience will be friendly for new players and veteran alike.
As we continue building this next generation of Ranked Play, we want to deliver an experience where the features and functionality build upon the original Warcraft III Ranked mode, while also considering the community-driven variants that have emerged in both legacy Warcraft III and Reforged.
A LOOK AT RANKED PLAY
As with the legacy version of Warcraft III, all five of the game modes in Reforged (1v1, 2v2, 3v3, 4v4, FFA) will have their own ranked ladders. In keeping with legacy Warcraft III’s spirit, we also wanted to ensure that there are no requirements for moving up or down in rank beyond your raw point value. This means we will not institute systems like promotion or demotion matches.
Work in Progress: 1v1 Leaderboard
However, we have made some changes from the legacy version that we believe will lead to a better Ranked Play experience for players. We will be moving from the previous levels system to a more distinct medal system. Those familiar with StarCraft II ranked ladders will recognize the Bronze through Grandmaster ranking system, which we are bringing to Reforged.
The Grandmaster division will now be the highest rank and will only comprise the top 300 players with the highest MMR globally. When players jump into Ranked matches, they will be able to see their rank badge next to each player’s name on the loading screen. Those in Master and Grandmaster will additionally have their MMR displayed to all players as well. In another change from the legacy Ranked system, we will now be displaying a player’s own MMR directly to them in the main menu and in their in-game profiles as well.
Additionally, we wanted to address the aggressive experience decay that was in place in the legacy Ranked Ladder for Warcraft III. The original intent behind such an aggressive decay was to retain active players so that they could maintain their ranks. We believe that this was too punishing and have now decided to remove experience decay from Reforged for all ranks. We may decide to implement experience decay for Grandmaster in the future, but we’ll continue to monitor the data and see what would make the most sense for our top competitive players.
To determine their Rank in the new system, players will now need to complete a series of five placement matches. These placement matches will only be required for any game mode or race combination where a player has not yet received a rank. For those who do have a rank, only one placement match will be needed after each season roll for any mode or race combination where a player has been placed.
Alongside the improvements coming to the Ranked Ladder, we are also going to be bringing Ranked Seasons to Warcraft III for the first time. Seasons will offer an opportunity to roll in balance updates, fresh map rotations, and other adjustments, as well as give players rewards for participating (and seeing how high up the ladder they can climb) in each new Season.
Work in Progress: Season 1 Unranked Status
Work in Progress: Season 1 Ranked Play Placement in Progress
We will adjust player MMR and divisions between Seasons to maintain rank division sizes and prevent MMR drift to keep matchmaking times down. We think Seasons will provide structure for Ranked updates and give players the time to mentally reset and get excited for the new Season and new seasonal rewards.
Work in Progress: Season 1 Ranked Play in Versus - Placed Status
Speaking of seasonal rewards—we plan to award a portrait for each division and players will earn new portraits as they rank up. Portraits will unlock for all divisions earned at and below a player’s rank. With each new Season, players can expect fresh new portraits to showcase their achievements for that season.
Work in progress Ranked Silver and Gold badges.
While Seasons are brand new to the Warcraft III community, we’re excited about the benefits this framework will bring to the game.
SHARPENING SKILLS IN UNRANKED MODE
In addition to improving the Ranked experience for Reforged, we also want to expand upon it by adding an Unranked mode to the game. Unranked will be coming soon after Ranked mode is added to the game, for those players that would like to practice new races, tactics, and more in a competitive setting without the same stakes as formal Ranked matches.
Here’s a look at how this new game mode will work:
Unranked will have its own MMR attributed per race and per game mode, and is separate from the Ranked MMR system. Unranked MMR will never be displayed or reset, and the only way it will change is through the player’s progression as they play. We expect that there will likely be some MMR drift between Ranked and Unranked, but we feel this is acceptable as the Ranked and Unranked players are approaching each game mode with different mindsets.
Work in Progress: Profile Match History
As is the case in StarCraft II, Unranked players will be matched against Ranked players in 1v1 games. Wins and Losses will count as normal for Ranked players to ensure that players still try their best and continue to play to win. Ranked players will also be able to rank up by defeating an Unranked player as well.
When playing in Team games, we will only matchmake teams of all Ranked or all Unranked players onto the same team to ensure the fairest matches. That means Unranked players will only be paired with other Unranked players, and vice versa. For those players playing Unranked in Arranged Teams, the matchmaker will average player MMR and treat you like any other Arranged Team. However, at the conclusion of each match, team history is not tracked like ordinary Arranged teams.
Seasons will also have no bearing on Unranked mode. This means that there will be no Ladder resets for Unranked mode; however, wins in Unranked will count toward unlocking existing win-based portraits.
We know that this is just part of the complete Ranked play experience you’re expecting—we will be detailing our approach to Profiles and more in our next developer update. While we’re aiming to release Ranked Play in the coming months, it’s important that we take the time needed to deliver a combination of features that best serves our players and the Warcraft III community. We’re looking forward to seeing the community discussion around our current plans for Ranked, Seasons, and Unranked modes, and we’ll provide updates on our progress as development continues.
- The Warcraft III Team
Created by Archian
STARCRAFT II 4.13.0 PTR PATCH NOTES
- Jul 15, 2020
We’re excited to announce a major update to the StarCraft II Map Editor!
Since Wings of Liberty, your feedback has been consistent: The Editor should be easier to use. This patch aims to address this feedback without losing depth of customization. As such, we’ve absorbed elements from the Warcraft III editor designed for ease of use without sacrificing existing capability of the StarCraft II Editor. We have also expanded the SCII Editor’s capability even further.
We encourage map makers and mod makers to jump in, explore, and send us your feedback as we’re always interested in adding more exciting changes in the future. This is the largest Editor update we've ever made, and we're excited to hear what you think! Below is an overview of some of the exciting new features. It is critical for us to get feedback about how your maps are behaving with these changes. So please try publishing your custom maps to the PTR and let us know if you run into any issues or strange behavior on our PTR forum.
Before you start: Please do not to forget to backup your maps before you try them on PTR as PTR is meant to be experimental.
Also: Please keep in mind that while War Chest XP can be earned on the PTR, progress will not carry over onto the other regions, and most rewards from the War Chest will not carry over from the PTR.
Read the full article: StarCraft II Official Game Site
Created by Mythic
1.32.7 PATCH NOTES
- Jun 30, 2020
June 29, 2020 - PTR
July 7, 2020 - LIVE
- The score screen for campaign missions now accurately displays time elapsed during that mission.
- Fixed an issue that was causing default loading screen text to display on custom loading screens.
- Fixed an issue in the user interface during Custom Games creation that caused the IME indicator to not display.
- Fixed a desync that occurred when a player in Classic mode and a player in Reforged mode were in a game with a unit that is both bloodlusted and hexed or polymorphed.
- Fixed an issue where Anasterian Sunstrider would sometimes use Death Knight Arthas’s model in Reforged mode.
- Frost Wyrm illusion auto attacks no longer apply the frost breath passive.
- Developers’ notes: Having illusions apply a slowing effect on auto attack was unintentionally added recently. This fix shouldn’t have much effect on balance overall.
- Music on the score screen now only plays once.
Created by Mythic
With a concept that's been in development for 11 years, the fourth rendition of Bosses of Warcraft is here! Constant development ensures rapid updates -- including new dungeons, graphics, user interfaces, and other exciting features you won't find anywhere else.
- Jun 22, 2020
"Whether or not you have already played our Warcraft III map, Bosses of Warcraft is an expansive project created to combine the elements of Professions, Dungeons and raid-style Bosses with the highly adaptable Warcraft III engine to create a unique user experience."
Bosses of Warcraft features epic 24-Player bossfights inspired by the map Impossible Bosses, made by Psyris. It uses a save/load system to enable players to store their progress as they advance through the map.
• Inventory System
• Quests & Dialog System
• Fullscreen Looting
• Custom HDR Settings
• Weather System
• Multiboard showing statistics
• Over 600 items
• Over 100 Custom Abilities
- A spell caster without peer, the Magician is able to both aid his allies and unleash magical havoc upon his foes. Magicians are not to be underestimated; their balance of offense and defense makes them an ally like no other. While their single target damage is not the greatest, when it comes to vanquishing multiple enemies, no class does the job as efficiently as the Magician.
- Highest area burst damage
- Can buff allies and disorient enemies, as well as recover mana
- Magical barriers for teammates
- A master of divine arts, protecting his allies as they defeat the forces of evil. On his own he isn't able to do much, but together with his group, he can make them unstoppable. The Healer can keep your allies up, healthy and full of fighting spirit, and is thus essential to any group.
- Recovery magic
- Buffs and areas that significantly reduce damage taken
- Specializes in single-target or area healing, and self-defense
- The cornerstone of any good party. The Tank absorbs damage from enemies, standing as a guardian between friend and foe. While not able to do as much direct damage to enemies as the other classes, they are able to harm stronger opponents by weakening them and breaking their battle rhythm.
- Great disruption
- High sustain, and can protect others
- Causes more threat than other classes
- A hero that strives in danger, the Duelist is able to deal the highest amount of single target damage and destruction upon enemies. Though the Duelist needs to be covered by a tank whom is able to keep threat, when that need is met -- there is no class as swift and lethal.
- Can be built both ability based and basic attack based
- Highest single target damage
- Can increase attack speed and attack damage for allies
- A master of the bow and the gun, the Ranger utilizes physical damage from long distances consistently -- especially when focusing down a lone prey. The Ranger is able to outmaneuver his opponents, dealing damage and dodging enemy attacks before making his retreat. When you need damage you can depend on, the Ranger is ready to hunt down your foes.
- Mixed mastery of area and single target damage
- Consistent long-range damage
- Can dodge attacks while attacking
- Dedicated guilds, staff members, and players ensure a welcoming experience.
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