As a big final package of the Starcraft 2 saga not only the history of the Protoss is examined more exactly, the interface is revised, new game modes are added or the story of all three factions is told to the end, there are also new units for all three factions. Terrans, Zerg and Protoss will each receive two new units, which will bring a breath of fresh air to the multiplayer games.
In the beta phase the new fighters could be put through their paces and even co-developed by the test players. So over the good half year of the beta a lot has been done to balance the new units – new abilities have been tested and sometimes discarded, weak units have been polished up, the superior ones have been trimmed down a bit. Below we take a closer look at the final versions of the new Legacy of the Void units and reveal all the data worth knowing.
Adepts are the new remote fighters of the Protoss and can be manufactured in the warp knot. With their “mighty Gleven cannons” they don’t reach air units, and on the ground they are also… let’s say “special”. In early combat, adepts can hold their own very well as long as they compete against light units. With a fire rate of 1.61, they are not fast, but they have a decent range (4) and their basic damage is more than doubled against light units (from ten damage points to 23). The peculiarity of an adept’s attack is a deadly shock wave that is triggered when an enemy unit dies as a result of the attack. In this case, the damage jumps to two more units nearby. So they are extremely strong in the fight against hordes of light units like Marines, Zerglings, Workers, etc..
Adepts count themselves among the light units. While they were relatively well equipped at the beginning of the beta, it now looks somewhat different due to game balance updates. Meanwhile, adepts only come with a standard value of 60 life points and 60 tortoiseshell points. For light units this is still enough, but anything else adepts can easily counter (which is due to the low damage against units with armor rather than the low hit points).
The special ability of the adept is the “Psi-Transfer”. The adept creates a blue transparent image of himself, which is visible to all players but not attackable. The image itself cannot attack either, but can only command places. It can be moved through other units, but is blocked by buildings or force fields. Independent of the image, the adept can continue to act consistently. After a few seconds, however, the psi transfer ends and the adept teleports to the last position of his image, which disappears at the same time.
The basic idea for the purpose of the adept is relatively clear: As an early Harass unit he should uncover the base of the opponent and stick annoyingly to the cheek of his workers. In the case of opponents without blockades by force fields or building walls, it is almost impossible to prevent an adept from exploring the entire base and penetrating to the workers. If the opponent’s expansion base is also near his main base, you can easily run back and forth with the adepts and bring the enemy into great distress.
Disruptors are a kind of ground siege weapon manufactured in the robot factory. The spherical appearance (“rum ball”) and its function are a hotly debated topic in the forums – the latter not completely wrongly. Disruptors have no automatic attacks and only one ability: the Psi-Nova. When this is activated, the disruptor changes to its invulnerable energy form and, after a short time, triggers an explosion that causes massive surface damage and additional shield damage in its surroundings. The Disruptor is a rolling bomb, so to speak, that is extremely effective against hordes of weak units such as workers and densely built-up areas.
The problem with the whole explosion thing is: If you don’t pay attention, you’ll quickly send your own units to the other side, because like almost all siege units, the “Rumkugel” also causes strong friendly fire. The only exception are other disruptors. If you are always aware of this and combine the bomb with other Protoss abilities, they can reach their full potential. For example, enemy units with time curvature can be trapped or slowed by the mothership or the oracles’ new stasis trap so that they cannot escape the bombs.
Furthermore, the disruptors can now be transported behind enemy lines with the Warpprisma. The balls are also suitable for defense. If your base is besieged by the new Zerg Sneakers or hordes of Cockroach/Hydralisks try to force their way into the base, it’s a found food for a few Disruptors.
The cyclone was one of the strongest units in the beta. In the meantime, the drone produced in the factory has had to leave a few springs, but good micro-management can still make it very dangerous. With its rocket launchers, the cyclone reaches both individual ground and air units and causes considerable damage, especially to strong units such as Immortals, Ultralisks and Thors. It is quite fast on the way and has a large range. Its greatest strength, however, is its ability to target.
If a cyclone approaches an enemy, it can target it and fire rockets (400 damage) over a period of 14 seconds. Once the target has been captured, the cyclone or enemy can move freely over a greater distance than the normal range of the cyclone’s weapon without the fire stopping. Only when the target leaves the range of the cyclone does the attack stop early. Although the 200 health drone is well equipped, it can be easily killed with the right units (fast units like Speedlings or teleport units like Hetzer). In addition, the kite tactics hardly work in larger troops.
The Falcon is the second new Terran unit. The medium-sized battleship is produced in the space port and with its two modes is supposed to take over the air defence as well as support the ground attack. In Battle Mode, the Falcon uses its twin Rocket Launcher, which deals proper area damage to hordes of flight units.
Alternatively, the falcon can also be placed in siege mode and then used as a heavy artillery platform that cannot directly attack ground units. Instead, the falcon can target a limited area over a long distance with its heavy anti-ground cannon to deal devastating damage to any unit entering the area. Even heavily armored units are not safe.
The advantage of the falcon is its versatility: air defense, ground combat support, siege and thanks to good speed also useful for disturbance manoeuvres (e.g. attack the enemy work line from behind). Unfortunately the falcon is quite expensive and can be blown out of the sky with the right anti-air units – especially heavy air units like porters or battle cruisers. Even worse are the fast anti-air ground troops that bypass the area of the barrage fire or the new Zerg devastators.
This new long-range unit of the Zerg is morphed from cockroaches and can only attack medium-range ground units with its standard plasma attacks. In addition, however, the devastator still has the ability “Corrosive Bile”, which functions like a kind of mortar bombardment. A projectile is fired in a parabolic arc over a large distance (9, with upgrade 13) to the target, which on impact deals 60 damage to all units – even air units – in a small area. The Corrosive Bile is particularly effective on the new Terran Falcons when they are in Siege mode, or on Protoss force fields that are currently destroyed.
Disadvantage of the projectile: It flies quite slowly (2.5 seconds to impact), so only inactive, immobilized or very slow units, workers (always moving in the same area) and of course buildings as well as Protoss force fields can be used as targets. In addition, the Verheerer itself is quite slow on the road, with 120 life points not particularly resilient and, on top of that, not exactly cheap. Without a protective escort, the Devil can be quickly killed by powerful units such as Marauders.
Some players from SC1 will surely know the lurker – now he is back. It is morphed like before from hydralisks and serves primarily again as a ground siege unit. Apart from that, it is also ideal for ambushes, blockades on ramps and bottlenecks as well as for fighting many ground units. As a rule, lurkers cannot attack the surface. They’ll have to dig themselves in first. Once this has happened, they inflict devastating surface damage over very great distances with their cascade-like spiked salvos.
The greatest strength of the lurkers is their enormous range, which surpasses that of almost all other units and defensive buildings in the game. The disadvantages are similar to SC1: long construction times, high costs, units can evade the spiky salvo, flight units have nothing to fear and Terrans can easily move their units with Medivacs over lurkers. In addition, lurkers are vulnerable to other siege weapons such as the new Protoss Disruptors or Terran Siege Tanks.