More StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm lore questions answered

Blizzard's creative development team has published a series of StarCraft story Q&As leading up to the release of Heart of the Swarm. The 11th installment brings us answers to such pressing matters as why Zerg can't play nice, and how Tychus Findlay is able to smoke in his space armor without passing out. Like we did last month , we've collected some of the best answers below, and condensed them into nice, Zergling-jerky-sized bites.

Answers provided in this post are from Brian Kindregan, lead writer of Heart of the Swarm.

Q: "Why haven't the Protoss advanced in tech over the course of the games?"

A: "The protoss are an inward-looking race. They feel they achieved the perfect approach to technology and civilization long ago, and now they have little interest in changing. There are certainly protoss innovators, but in general they prefer steady, methodical progress. The protoss basically value stability above all. New tech has a way of changing everything."

The Short Version: The Protoss are fine with how awesome their laser beams are now. They don't need to make more awesome laser beams.

Q: "Is there any chance that the Swarm could manifest some kind of compassion if the zerg stopped being driven by the singular goal of protoss destruction?"

A: The mandates and operating parameters that kept the Overmind from having complete free will were mostly subverted when the Queen of Blades, an infested terran who retained much of her sapience, took over. (As I've said elsewhere, there was still some influence from the Dark Voice, as she had lots of zerg mutagen floating around in her system, but her non-Zerg sapience freed her up a great deal.)

From that point on, the Zerg became capable of acting in whatever way their leader was capable of acting. But why would the leader of the Swarm ever want or need to show compassion? Compassion would not serve to grow the Swarm, and it's unlikely any race would ever accept the Swarm as allies or equals.

The Short Version: Nope.

Q: "If the zerg are biological life-forms, how can they survive traveling across the universe without any air, shields, or armor suits?"

A: "They can adapt to handle those environments. The question of how they can do things without tools is a uniquely human way to look at a problem. When we can't do something, we build a tool to do it for us. A race that can evolve and adapt so rapidly and so well simply doesn't think that way. As an example, there are creatures that thrive on the bottom of the ocean here on Earth, in places where our tools and equipment have only recently allowed us to go."

The Shorter Version:

Q: "Why does Tychus Findlay, who always smokes a cigar in his armor, never get choked?"

A: "I'd like to say it's because he's got special air-circulation pumps. But the truth is, he's just that tough."

The Short Version: Because he's Tychus effing Findlay, that's why.

You can read the rest of the Q&A here .