StarCraft II

Legacy of the Void: Multiplayer Preview

Legacy of the Void: Multiplayer Preview

Goals for Legacy of the Void Gameplay

For StarCraft II Legacy of the Void, the development team has a number of goals for the multiplayer experience. To reach these goals, Legacy of the Void will feature several modifications to StarCraft II multiplayer. This includes fundamental gameplay changes; changes to existing units and mechanics, and the addition of new units to enhance the game in exciting and meaningful ways

  • More action
    • More opportunities to attack at any time, and a decrease in overall passive gameplay.
  • More harassment options
    • One of the core mechanisms Legacy of the Void aims to bring is consistent action. More harass opportunities should help distinguish players who can manage their units effectively due to the high skill-ceiling and micro requirements that harass demands.
  • Incentives to go on the offense
    • Spread players out more on the map and incentivize the use of mobile forces that can strike when there are openings (think low-risk Marine/Medivac drops).
  • Micro opportunities on both sides
    • Create more significant counter-micro opportunities and reduce the number of situations where one player’s ability to micro matters far more than their opponent's.
  • Army vs Army Micro
    • If micro doesn’t matter that much, battles are less interesting. Legacy of the Void aims to make micro much more important throughout a battle so that the results of a battle are more dependent on a player's ability to execute commands during combat.
  • Differentiate player skill better
    • Legacy of the Void will feature armies for all races that can split and become extremely effective. Armies that remain entirely together will find seriously decreased effectiveness.
  • Improve weaker design units/abilities
    • Units like the Corruptor and Battlecruiser will have more utility overall. Legacy of the Void will seek to ensure that units can always affect a battle in different and meaningful ways.

Now that you have an understanding of our goals, let’s move on to discuss the vast number of changes you can expect to see in Legacy of the Void!

A note from the StarCraft II Development Team
The multiplayer changes below are not yet final. With the game in a pre-alpha phase, nothing is set in stone (remember Warhounds?). In the meantime, the team will continue trying new ideas, tuning existing ones, and most importantly, listening to community feedback for Legacy of the Void.

General Gameplay Changes

There are two changes to the general core-gameplay elements of StarCraft II. Both changes are aimed at making Legacy of the Void multiplayer a more action-packed experience.

  • Resource tweaks
    • In order to encourage aggression, we intend to create more places to attack. To do this, we’re incentivizing faster expansions by decreasing the resources on Mineral Fields and Vespene Geysers by 33%. Combined with our unit changes for each race, this should make mid-game aggression much more potent and viable.
      • Mineral Fields now hold 1,000 Minerals instead of 1,500
      • Vespene Geysers now hold 1,700 Vespene Gas instead of 2,500
  • Starting worker count
    • In order to generally reduce the passive time-periods in the game, we’re increasing the starting worker count from 6 workers to 12 workers. The supply granted by the Command Center, Nexus, and Hatchery are being increased to account for this.

Terran Changes

New Units

Unit Name: HERC
Health: 160
Weapon: Damage: 30 - Ground
Weapon Speed: 1.8
Range: 1
Armor: 1
Movement Speed: 2.75

A light-biological unit that can grapple onto a unit to quickly zip into battle. Its attack deals short-range small-radius splash damage making it ideal versus Ling/Bane compositions, as well as versus Protoss “death-balls”

Unit Name: Cyclone
Health: 200
Weapon: Damage: 18- Ground/Air
Weapon Speed: 1
Range: 5
Armor: 1
Movement Speed: 2.81

The Cyclone is a factory unit which can lock onto a target, then deal massive damage over time while on the move. Using the cyclone to its full potential and reacting to it well are both heavily dependent on micro.

Existing Units

  • Siege Tank
    • To coincide with Legacy of the Void’s focus on harass and aggression, the Siege Tank has been granted the ability to be lifted and dropped while maintaining Siege Mode. Doing so requires the full cargo-space of a Medivac.
  • Thor
    • The Thor’s 2nd attack-mode, ‘High Impact Payload’, has been replaced with ‘Emergency Repair’, an activated ability which incapacitates the Thor while healing it back to full health.
  • Banshee
    • In order to further enhance the diversity of Terran harass, a new upgrade for the Banshee will drastically increase its movement speed. This upgrade requires a fusion core and allows the Banshee to outrun all mobile detection units.
    • The Banshee has also received +1 to its attack range.
  • Battlecruiser
    • The Battlecruiser has been granted the ‘Tactical Jump’ ability, allowing it to teleport anywhere on the map (regardless of fog of war) at a very high energy cost.

Zerg Changes

New Units

Unit Name: Lurker
Health: 200
Weapon: Damage: 30 - Ground
Weapon Speed: 2
Range: 6
Armor: 1
Movement Speed: 2.95

The Lurker has returned. The Lurker is a Tier 2 unit which morphs from the Hydralisk. It deals line-based splash damage, but can only attack while burrowed. The Lurker has an available Tier 3 upgrade which substantially increases its attack range.

Unit Name: Ravager
Health: 180
Weapon: Damage: 16 - Ground
Weapon Speed: 1.3
Range: 6
Armor: 1
Movement Speed: 2.75

The Ravager is a new unit which morphs off of the Roach. While stronger than the roach, its effectiveness heavily relies on player micro due to its activated ability: Corrosive Bile.

  • Corrosive Bile: Corrosive Bile is a mortar-style area of effect skill-shot which, once fired, impacts after a short delay. The ability can hit both air and ground units, and also will destroy any forcefields it comes in contact with.

Existing Units

  • Corruptor
    • The Corruptor’s ‘Corruption’ ability has been removed and replaced with ‘Caustic Spray’. Caustic Spray is a channeled ability which deals increasing damage over time to the unit or building targeted. However, the Corruptor cannot move as it channels this spell.
  • Swarm Host
    • To strengthen Zerg harass, the Swarm Host has been shifted from a siege-tool, to a mobile harass tool. ‘Spawn Locusts’ can now be used while unburrowed, but it must be activated manually, and has a much longer cooldown. Locusts themselves have been buffed, and can be upgraded at Tier 3 to fly over terrain. They must then swoop down to the ground to engage.
  • Nydus Worm
    • To enhance the diversity and strength of harass options for Zerg, the Nydus Worm can no longer take damage until it is finished unburrowing. A main effect of this change is that workers will no longer be a viable defense versus Nydus worms.

Protoss Changes


  • Warp-in Mechanic
    • Units that are warping-in have become more vulnerable while constructing. The goal of this change is to strengthen harassing tactics versus Protoss, while also making a Protoss player’s army and warp-in positioning a more tactical decision.

New Unit

Unit Name: Disruptor
Health: 100/100
Armor: 1
Shield Armor: 0
Movement Speed: 2.75

The Disruptor is a light-mechanical unit from the Robotics Facility whose ability, ‘Purification Nova’, can deal a massive burst of AoE splash damage if an opponent does not counter-micro. The Disruptor is extremely potent versus any force that clumps it's units together, as well as against worker lines.

  • Purification Nova: Once activated, the Disruptor becomes invulnerable and gains increased movement speed. After 4 seconds, the Disruptor emits a massive blast dealing AoE damage in a circle and immediately becomes vulnerable again, also losing its speed boost.

Existing Units

  • Warp Prism
    • To strengthen the harassment options available to Protoss, the Warp Prism can now pick-up units from a distance.
  • Immortal
    • In order to create more opportunities for Terran Mech, and to increase the impact of micro, the Immortal’s ‘Hardened Shield’ ability has been removed and replaced with ‘Barrier’, an activated ability which grants the Immortal a 200 hitpoint shield
  • Oracle
    • To create more diversity in Protoss detection, Revelation has been removed and merged with Envision so that any targets tagged are now revealed for 60 seconds. The oracle has also been granted a new active ability called ‘Stasis Ward’.
      • Stasis Ward: This ability places a cloaked Stasis Ward on the ground which, upon detonation, will explode and trap nearby enemy units in stasis for 30 seconds.
  • Tempest
    • To help incentivize action, the Tempest has had its role changed to an aerial skirmish unit – its movement speed has been increased, it can now only fire on ground units, and it has been granted an activated ability called ‘Disintegration’.
      • Disintegration: Disintegration can be cast on units or structures from a short distance, and deals 500 damage over 50 seconds.
  • Carrier
    • Carriers can now activate ‘Release Interceptors’ to permanently launch all interceptors at great distance. After 60 seconds, any remaining Interceptors will perish.

As stated previously, these changes are not finalized, and the team is eager to hear your feedback on what you think about both the goals and changes for Legacy of the Void!

New Features

Archon Mode

Archon Mode is the standard one-versus-one StarCraft II experience… with a friend!  In Archon Mode, you and your ally share control over a single base while facing off against an enemy from the Matchmaking Ladder. That enemy can be another pair in Archon Mode, or a lone player who has opted to face off versus Archons who match-make evenly against his or her skill.

In Archon Mode, you’ll have to decide how you and your partner want to split up what you do. A team that’s working together will play much better than one that’s not, so you’ll want to come up with the best way to split your tasks. Perhaps one player macros and the other micros? Or maybe one player only does drops and uses workers while the other constantly attacks and harasses with your army. We’ll leave it up to you guys to find what works best! We’ll be eagerly listening to your feedback on this new game mode.

Automated Tournaments

We know that StarCraft II players are perhaps the most passionate and competitive players in the world, so for StarCraft II Legacy of the Void we wanted to add a whole new way to compete. With that in mind, an Automated Tournament feature will be released with Legacy of the Void featuring daily and weekly tournaments. To mimic the existing tournament experience as closely as possible, Automated Tournaments will feature group stages that feed into a bracket stage playoff. You will also have opportunities to study your opponents, and maps can be vetoed.

Daily tournaments will be expected to last between three and four hours, while weekly ones… well, they last the week of course! Overall, we expect Automated Tournaments to be an excellent place for players to compete in at all skill levels. Casual players can have a good time, while others can compete at the highest level to earn tournament experience for live events like the World Championship Series.

We’re incredibly excited for the many changes coming in StarCraft II Legacy of the Void. Your passion for StarCraft is what keeps us committed to making the best game possible, and we couldn’t do it without our players and this community. Please continue to offer your feedback. It has been immeasurably helpful in getting us this far and now it is more important than ever. We’ll be announcing more in the future, such as news on the Beta, so stay tuned and keep offering your thoughts for Legacy of the Void.

Next Article

Featured News