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Silicon Sports | 31/05/2020

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More balance changes to come

More balance changes to come

Dustin Browder, one of the StarCraft II developers, has highlighted some balance changes which look to completely change some of the early game tactics for Terrans as well as making the Zerg a little more competitive as well as some race win statistics. His post can be found on the NA site and the SEA site.

Some of the play stats (NA region stats):

Protoss are played 38.5% of the time.
Terran are played 38.0% of the time.
Zerg are played 23.5% of the time.

Planned balance changes:

  • We’re increasing roach range. This will allow roaches to be more effective in large groups, giving the zerg more options in the mid to end game.
  • Fungal Growth will now prevent Blink, which will give zerg a way to stop endlessly Blinking stalkers which can be very challenging to deal with in large numbers.
  • The Barracks are going to require a Supply Depot, which will impact a lot of early terran reaper pushes.
  • The reaper speed upgrade will require the Factory, which is meant to weaken a lot of the early terran reaper attacks that dominate so many matches, especially in team games.
  • We’re making a number of increases to the health of zerg buildings, which will make the very vulnerable zerg technology structures more resistant to raids.  We don’t expect these hit point changes to have a super significant impact on the game, but the current numbers felt way too low.

Dustin’s post also points out that the Protoss are winning the majority of games, yet the above planned changes involve nerfing the Terrans? Seriously, what the hell? Why are there not any changes to the Protoss?

I believe the Zerg changes are good, and will make them more accessible in the lower leagues. But the Terran changes are quite counterintuitive and are going to change the way they are played dramatically. Requiring a supply depot for a barracks is a bit over the top; increasing the build time of the rax would have been more suitable as would the same with the reaper speed upgrade by increasing the build time of the tech lab or the upgrade.

I can almost foresee the Reaper becoming extinct as it is really only an early game unit and thus will dissappear from most if not all games due to the requirement of the depot for a rax and the factory for the speed upgrade

Needless to say, these proposed changes have caused a bit of a stir in the community (5000+ comments on the US blog) and it also shows how the developers are a little out of touch with the community.