True Blue Episode 5

General David “teargas” Dunne
It’s another weekend, and so it’s time for another episode of True Blue, GosuGamer’s blue post tracker. As usual, if it’s blue and it’s on the forums, you’ll find it here. This week we got a plethora of gameplay information from various sources, but primarily from Lead Designer Dustin Browder, aka Cavez.

For the Protoss, we learned quite a few more specifics about the warp in mechanic. From the last first Battle Report, we saw that units can once again be damaged while they are warping in. Now, we also know that warp in will only function inside of your own Pylon power grid, not in that of an enemy or ally. We also know that, should your power grid be destroyed while units are in the process of warping in, you will receive a refund for the resources spent. There is still no word on whether or not this will still activate the cooldown of your Warp Gate, but at least your resource investment will be safe.

There was also some information on the Protoss air units. It is confirmed that the final line up for air units is: Phoenix, Void Ray, Carrier, Warp Prism, Observer and Mothership. The Mothership will be a unique unit, but now can compensate for its slow movement speed by virtue of being able to teleport to any Protoss structure. Also, the Vortex ability is now single target, and the cloaking field is passive. Testing on the Mothership is, of course, complicated by its high tech level, and so its status is far from final.

The Zerg also had a few questions fielded and answered by the devs. For instance, the Infestor cannot burrow under buildings; no, not even buildings that don’t touch the ground, such as Pylons. Also, the Swarm Guardian’s ability to spawn Broodlings when it attacks can be used to cause friendly fire on groups of Siege Tanks and cause Banelings to detonate on one another. The design team is waiting for the beta to make the call on whether or not this will be a balance issue. On another interesting note, the idea of having different Egg graphics for different Zerg strains was raised. While Dustin stated that currently there are no plans on having a different graphic for any Egg but the Baneling Egg, he did not close the door on the possibility. This could make for some interesting art updates in the future if Browder decides to take this bit of input to heart.

And last, but certainly not least, the Terran have also gotten some attention in the past week, though substantially less than their Zerg and Protoss counterparts. For starters, we know that, while calldowns have made their way back into the game in the form of the Mule and Extra Supply, the Orbital Command building cannot call in any support units such as Marines. Calldowns are in, but the Drop Pods are still out. Also, although the addons themselves have drastically changed between Brood War and StarCraft 2, the mechanics surrounding them are the same. If a player is researching a tech at any addon, and the attached building is destroyed or lifted, the upgrade will stop just like in Brood War.

In other news, the Blizzard Amusement Park art contest is in full swing, and Browder has unveiled what match will be featured in the upcoming Battle Report: Terran vs. Zerg. He has still declined to set a release date. That wraps things up for the week. Tune in next week for another episode of True Blue!