Quick thoughts after an hour of HOTS

I personally wasn’t blessed with a Heart of the Swarm beta account, but Julie was, and we played around with it today for an hour or two. Julie played 2 games against the AI with Protoss, and I played a Zerg and a Terran game against the AI. Then, I played an unranked TvT.

The units were largely as described. Admittedly, the experience was somewhat underwhelming. The units are interesting, but they weren’t mindblowing to use after having seen them in action.

The graphical and interface tweaks are nice. The weirdest part for me was the workers being automatically sent to mine at the beginning of the game. It’s a nice touch since a lot of games will lag on entry, though I don’t know why Blizzard hasn’t introduced an in-game counter at the beginning instead. That also helps with the sometimes surprising start. Otherwise, I’m mostly fine with things.

The TvT was interesting. I went 2rax Reaper into mech since that’s where all the action is at, and yes, the Warhound appears to be the real winner here. I ended up losing after a really good start, mostly because of poor control on my side, but I was disappointed that mixing in Hellions was pretty worthless, and Thors even melted to the Warhound.

When I think about it, it all feels beta-ish and underwhelming, but I can’t deny that I’m excited about playing StarCraft again. After playing that TvT, I thought that I might try laddering WoL again to get my skills back in shape. And being able to play unranked games will do wonders for ladder anxiety. If I get back into it, I’m sure you’ll hear about it here. In the meantime, enjoy all the pros coming out of the woodworks to stream again.

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