StarCraft 2’s latest patch buffs Artanis, Raynor, and Swann in Co-op
StarCraft 2 has received its latest patch, and it focuses primarily upon the game’s Co-op game mode. The commanders Artanis, Raynor, and Swann have each received significant rebalancing, largely in the form of buffs. Artanis’s changes in particular are quite significant, lowering numerous cooldowns, research timers, and resource costs to create faster gameplay with less ramp-up time.
With Raynor, his playstyle generally reflects that of the Terran faction in the main game mode. Players have the option of “mechanical” or “bio” builds — that is, mechanical units or foot soldiers like Marines. While Raynor’s bio build has always been strong, this patch aims to buff his mech build.
- Orbital Strike energy cost decreased from 50 energy to 25 energy.
- Orbital Strike cooldown decreased from 60 seconds to 30 seconds.
- Shield Overcharge cooldown reduced from 300 seconds to 180 seconds.
- Dragoon damage increased from 14 (22 vs armored) to 14 (28 vs armored). Damage increased from weapon upgrades from +2 to +1 (+3 vs armored).
- Dragoon base range increased from 5 to 6. Range after Singularity Charge increased from 7 to 8.
- Phoenix base damage increased from 5 (10 vs light) to 7 (12 vs light).
- Psionic Storm upgrade cost decreased from 150/150 to 100/100.
- Khaydarin Amulet upgrade cost decreased from 150/150 to 100/100.
- Khaydarin Amulet research time decreased from 90 to 60.
- Plasma Surge upgrade cost decreased from 200/200 to 150/150.
- Plasma Surge upgrade research time decreased from 120 seconds to 90 seconds.
- Shield Overcharge Cooldown Mastery replaced with Shield Overcharge Duration and Damage Absorption Mastery. Shield Overcharge Duration and Damage Absorption Mastery Mastery increases the durability and duration of Shield Overcharge by 3% per point up to 90%.
- Warp Charge Cooldown Reduction Mastery replaced by Energy Regeneration and Ability Cooldown Reduction Mastery. This Mastery increases the energy generation and ability cooldowns of all of Artanis’ units by 1.5% per point, up to 45%. Affected abilities include the Zealot’s Charge and Whirlwind, the Immortal’s Barrier, the Reaver’s Create Scarab, the Phoenix’s Graviton Beam, and the Tempests’ Disintegration. High Templar and Archons will have their energy regeneration increased.
- Artanis’ Level 2 upgrade, Guardian Shell, now provides 15% life and shield regeneration for friendly units.
- Guardian Shell Life and Shield Restoration Masteries now provide 0.5% additional unit regeneration per point, down from 1% per point. Maximum additional restoration reduced from 30% to 15%.
Han & Horner
- All of Horner’s units’ Tactical Jump abilities no longer require vision of the target area.
- Mirage base damage increased from 5 (10 vs light) to 7 (12 vs light).
- All Raynor’s Factory and Starport units now receive 20% gas cost bonuses instead of 20% mineral cost bonuses.
- Banshees now gain +2 range when cloaked.
- Battlecruisers can now shoot while moving.
- The Battlecruiser’s Yamato Gun cooldown decreased from 100 seconds to 60 seconds.
- Replaced Stimpack Duration Mastery with Research Cost Reduction Mastery. Research Cost Reduction Mastery reduces the costs of all research by 2% per point, up to a maximum of 60%.
- Medic Heal Damage Reduction Mastery replaced by Mech Attack Speed Mastery. Mech Attach Speed Mastery increases the attack speed of Raynor’s Factory and Starport units by 1% per point up to a maximum of 30%.
- Hyperion cooldown Mastery increased from -3 seconds per point to -4 seconds per point. Maximum bonuses increased from -90 seconds to -120 seconds.
- The Battlecrusier’s Tactical Jump no longer requires vision of the target area.
- SCVs now benefit from the Level 1 Vehicle Specialist upgrade, which reduces the SCV’s build time by 20%.
- SCVs now benefit from the Level 15 Mechanical Know-How upgrade, which increases the SCV’s HP by 20%.
- Hellbat HP increased from 135 to 235.
- Cyclone cost decreased from 150/150 to 150/100.
- Targeting Optics upgrade cost decreased from 150/150 to 100/100.
- Targeting Optics research time decreased from 90 seconds to 60 seconds.
- Mag-Field Accelerator upgrade cost decreased from 200/200 to 100/100.
- Mag-Field Accelerator upgrade research time decreased from 120 seconds to 90 seconds.
- Thor 330mm Cannon animation cast start and finish times decreased from 2 seconds each to .5 second each.
- Thor 330mm Cannon cast range increased from 7 to 10.
- The Wraith’s Pulse Amplifier upgrade has been reworked. It now has the following functionality: When the Wraith is moving, the damage of its Gemini Missiles is increased by 100% and the damage of its Burst Lasers is increased by 300%.
- The Wraith’s Displacement Field upgrade now provides Wraiths with 20% additional movement speed when cloaked.
- Decreased the deceleration of Wraiths from 2.6 to 1.25.
- Increased the attack arc of the Wraith’s Burst Lasers and Gemini Missiles weapons from 0 to 90.
- Increased the Wraith’s turning rate from 720 to 1440.
- Decreased the time between the Wraith’s Burst Laser attacks from 1.7 to 1.25.
- Reduced the damage point of Wraith’s Burst Lasers and Gemini Missiles from .167 to .0446.
- The Hercules’ Tactical Jump no longer requires vision of the target area.
- Enemy units near the target of a Drakken Laser Drill’s attack will now try to find and attack any units providing vision for the laser.
- Increased the life regeneration of Regenerative Bio-steel from .6 per second to 2 per second.
- Laser Drill Build and Upgrade Time Mastery renamed to Laser Drill Build Time, Upgrade Time, and Upgrade Cost Mastery. It now reduces the build time, upgrade time, and upgrade cost by 1.5% per point up to a maximum of 45%.
- Normalized the repair rates of all mechanical Protoss units.
- Correctly added the Psionic tag to Alarak’s Mothership.
- Fixed a typo in Artanis’ Plasma Surge upgrade.
- Fixed the hotkey hookup of Artanis’ Psionic Storm upgrade in the Templar Archives.
- Correctly renamed the ground armor labels of Dehaka’s Primal Locusts, Explosive Creepers, and burrowed Impalers.
- Fixed a bug where canceling warp-ins would trigger Fenix’s Avenging Protocol.
- Updated Fenix’s level 6 upgrade tooltip for “Fenix Upgrade Cache”, to reflect the updated damage values.
- Updated Fenix’s level 4 upgrade tooltip for “Shock Troop Research Cache” to reflect the updated Ricochet Glaives upgrade.
- Han & Horner
- Updated Han & Horner’s level 7 upgrade tooltip for “Dominion Starport Upgrade Cache” to reflect the updated Wraith attack speed increase.
- The Strike Fighter Platform now has the Select Worker button while building.
- Fixed a bug where Widow Mines were not receiving armor upgrades while they were burrowed.
- Fixed a hotkey issue related to the Theia Raven.
- Fixed an issue where Raynor’s level 15 upgrade, Mercenary Munitions, was providing slightly too much attack speed.
- Correctly added the Biological tag to Stukov’s Apocalisk.
- Correctly added the Armored tag to Stukov’s Aleksander.
- Fixed an issue where the Apocalisk was dealing its splash damage to its primary target.
- The Apocalisk’ Burrow Charge ability now correct does spell damage instead melee damage.
- The Infested Colonist Compound now has the Select Worker and Halt buttons while building.
- The Infested Bunker now has the Select Worker and Halt buttons while building.
- Fixed a bug where Swann’s ARES Bots were not stunning enemies.
- Slightly decreased the number of periods of the Lock-on ability to avoid applying fractional damage.
- Fixed a bug where the Cyclone’s Lock-on ability was doing too much damage to Dehaka.
- Fixed a bug where Swann’s KMC Auto-Loaders upgrade was providing slightly too much attack speed.
- The Overseer’s and Observer’s deacceleration will no longer delay the activation of the Oversight and Surveillance Mode abilities.
- When casting Parasitic Bomb on the same target multiple times, the glow effect will display properly and will not disappear prematurely.
- When using Neural Parasite on a Viper that used Parasitic Bomb, the Parasitic Bomb effect will not change ownership.
In general, these changes are all in line with the development team’s previously released plans for each commander. Artanis and Raynor so far seem to have nailed the developers’ intent. But while Swann’s changes are in line with the developers’ goals, some players don’t believe the changes have gone far enough.
Early impression on the StarCraft 2 forums suggest Swann’s changes have indeed sped up his gameplay. But it’s still slow and plodding — just not as painfully slow as it once was. He’s stronger overall, which is a huge step in the right direction. However, players would just like to see more. But players always do, don’t they?
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