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Blizzard have made a video showing what would happen if they brought Kinect support to StarCraft 2. Who else thinks this is a brilliant idea? Rich is excited, but he'll take anything that could potentially improve his APM.
Fans of e-Sports rejoice! We've got lots of exclusive coverage coming up in the next few months. Keep your eyes on the site for updates. But, just to get you prepared, here's a teaser: one of the best Starcraft 2 matches we've ever seen. Great sporting moments are also great human moments. Tears, incredible fightbacks, and skin-of-the-teeth survival in the face of overwhelming odds – this Starcraft 2 match, from the semi-finals of the GSL's World Championship, has it all and then some. Best of all, it's free to watch. But fair warning: the World Championship has now finished, and if you haven't watched past the quarter-final stage and want to avoid spoilers, don't click through. If you're up for some incredible action, though, join us through the link.
Today Blizzard have wielded their +1 master hammer of banning, and have deactivated over 5000 Battlenet accounts for players who have been caught cheating and hacking maps in Starcraft 2.
Blizzard have released a demo for StarCraft 2 giving us a free taste of the singleplayer campaign and skirmish mode, and you don't even need to a Battle.Net account to download and play. Read on for details.
Recently Blizzard launched their first mass banning of Starcraft 2 players caught cheating in online games, but those hacking the single player portion of the game have also found themselves caught up in the action. Those found to be using single player hacks such as trainers in the the campaign and in skirmish games against the AI have found themselves suspended from their Battlenet accounts for a couple of weeks, or even frozen out completely.
Starcraft, the most mouse and keyboard game known to man. As much about frantic clicking and precision control as it is about grand strategy. It would be impossible to play any other way, right? Wrong. This video, spotted appropriately enough by Joystiq, shows a man achieving the impossible, playing Starcraft 2 with a joystiq. Read on to find out how and more pressingly, why.
It's been a long time coming, but Blizzard is finally gearing up to invite players to see the changes to Starcraft 2 in Heart of the Swarm. If you want to be one of them, now's the time to log into your Battle.net account and make sure your Beta Profile Settings are set to "Hell Yeah!"
Why settle for just one hugely impressive CGI trailer with little to no relation to the game its purportedly promoting? Here, have a second, courtesy of Blizzard, who have released the opening cinematic for Starcraft 2's first expansion, Heart of the Swarm. I have unofficially titled it: "Stompy, Stompy, Boom, Squish." There's a Wilhelm scream and everything. Enjoy.
Blizzard have been busy prodding Starcraft 2's soft insides with the balancing stick, releasing the second patch for the game in a month. Read on for a summary of the changes.
"In the coming months," according to an announcement today, Blizzard will add an option to play StarCraft 2 against anyone in the world. Cross-region play functionality was mentioned back in May by the developer, but Blizzard is following up with additional details. To play on other regions, you'll create a separate profile for each server region you'd like to play on. "Each region will have separate profile data, meaning that characters, profiles, ladder rankings, progress, and friends lists will not carry over from region to region," says Blizzard.
In the still-early life of competitive StarCraft 2, we've seen hundreds of incredible, memorable matches. Many professional players' fame or infamy has been earned by toppling the giants who came before them. That shift in attrition, that expert pivot of micro-management or creativity in a single match can surge a single player's reputation—when an unknown kills a Goliath (no, not that one) he becomes an Internet champion, epitomizing the wonderful parity that's emerging with competitive SC2. Everyone loves to root for the underdog and watch a good upset—here are StarCraft 2's top four.
StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm was designed to be a competitive sport, so it's only fair that it nicks some of sport's idioms. The most important of these is cribbed from football: it's a game of two halves. The front half: a 20-odd mission campaign with a steadily evolving spread of controllable units spurred on by an earnest, overwrought story of revenge. Dig through that, learn the game's many long and greasy ropes, and you'll find the back half: a competitive strategy game so finely balanced and so tactically varied that people are able to play it as their job. No matter your experience with Heart of the Swarm's predecessor, Wings of Liberty - first of Blizzard's planned three StarCraft IIs - it's the campaign you should start with. Not simply because it does an appreciable job of teaching new players the basic mechanics for one of the game's three races - the Zerg, the swarmy stars of this StarCraft show - but also because it's incredibly well put together in its own right.
Starcraft 2: Heart of the Swarm's new units have been unveiled at Major League Gaming's Anaheim Championship this weekend, and I've just had a chance to play with them. Read on for advanced tactics* with the new toys from a master of the game**. *Hah! **Hahaha!
The voice actor who plays Kerrigan, Tricia Helfer, has been teasing StarCraft 2 fans on Twitter confiring that voice recording is underway for StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm. "Voicing some #Starcraft today. Kerrigan/Queen is so fun. Bet some of you wish I'd take a pic of the script : )" she tweeted, before posting a picture of the script, facing away from the camera. Darn. Heart of the Swarm was playable at last year's Blizzcon, and a finished script suggests that it's pretty far into development. It's set to be released alongside the Blizzard Arcade and some updated StarCraft 2 mod tools. Find out more about the new units and characters that will be added by the expansion in our Blizzcon 2011 coverage. Meanwhile, here's that picture of the Kerrigan recording sessions, straight from the StarCraft 2 studios. Thanks to Scott for the heads up.
It wasn't only the GSL finals that took place at Blizzcon 2011 this weekend. Blizzard threw a separate tournament with a $50,000 prize pot to take advantage of the wealth of top StarCraft 2 talent in California. It was a dramatic and close fought contest that resulted in one of the most spectacular StarCraft 2 finals ever. VG247 have spotted a video of that final game online. You'll find it embedded below. If you don't want to know who the finalists are, then read no further. If you want to see an incredible StarCraft 2 game played in front of thousands of rapt fans then you're in for a treat.
The final rounds of Major League Gaming's StarCraft 2 Columbus tournament are underway and streaming live. The high-quality video stream is also free. Pop some corn and tune in to watch the surviving players duel for the championship.