StarCraft Universe is a MMO RPG utilizing the battle.net service. Featuring an emphasis on story, combat and multiplayer, StarCraft Universe allows you to save your character like in any multiplayer RPG. The story is fully voice acted, featuring cinematics created by StarCraft: Legacy's Freespace.
StarCraft Universe released a trailer for their demo "Chronicles of Fate" a few months ago:
However, the project requires additional funding to see completion. Thus, the team, having acquired permission from Blizzard, requires your help on KickStarter:
Even if unable to donate, be sure to spread word of the project to help increase exposure, and bring this project to completion.
Project Blackstone, the StarCraft alternate reality game, just received a full page in the lore section of the StarCraft II site.
It is my profound pleasure to welcome each and every one of you to Project Blackstone. Hold your heads high, people. You are now members of a select team, a group that has been handpicked by top officials in Dominion intelligence and approved by Emperor Mengsk himself. You will be the front line in scientific research dedicated to the protection and expansion of our empire of man throughout the Koprulu sector.
The Project Blackstone page has all the project logs and info on the project staff, so you should definitely check it out.
Blizzard has announced and released a desktop app for Battle.net, which basically allows users to keep all of their Battle.net games updated and accessible through one location. Below is Blizzard's description of its functions:
What’s this launcher update do? The new single sign-on functionality allows players to log in once to access World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Diablo III, and the upcoming PC and Mac versions of Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft, and stay logged in for up to 30 days.
Players can also install games directly through the app and, if you choose to leave the app running on your desktop, keep them up-to-date automatically even while you’re away from your computer. Please note that it’s entirely up to you whether you wish to leave the app running—you can exit it at any time, and it will automatically re-launch whenever your standard launchers would.
You can download the app here. You can also read the FAQ for this desktop app here.
A new Color Blind Mode has been added and can be enabled in the Gameplay options menu. When enabled, the following changes take effect:
Alternate colors are used to show the build grid when “Display Build Grid” is enabled.
Alternate colors are used to designate player colors when playing in teams.
Placement grid textures indicating unbuildable locations have been updated to display an “X” rather than changing from green to red.
Minimap terrain is darkened to provide more visual contrast between units and terrain.
A notification message is now broadcast to every player in the game when a player, spectator, or referee changes the game speed.
Destructible rocks now appear on the minimap.
Icon art for all three Protoss Ground Weapon upgrade levels have been updated to make them more visually distinct.
Friendly fire information is now stored in the PlayerStats events for replay tracker events.
A “Ladder Maps” option has been added to the Browse dropdown menu in Custom Games. Selecting this option will filter the map list to display only the melee maps that are being used in the current season of the ladder. The map pool from each matchmaking queue can be displayed by selecting 1v1, 2v2, 3v3, or 4v4 from the “Category” dropdown menu.
A Technology column has been added to the Score Summary tab on the Score Screen.
On a new post on Battle.net, the new replay features have been revealed to be coming with Patch 2.0.10, and the restrictions of viewing old replays explained.
Simply put, after patch 2.0.10, you won't be able to watch old replays with your friends, and you won't be able to recover multiplayer games from replays created in 2.0.9 and earlier. This was also the case when Heart of the Swarm was released -- watching replays with others and recovering games only worked with replays created in 2.0.4 and later.
In patch 2.0.10, we’re continuing to make improvements to the replay system based on community feedback. You can now jump ahead to any time in the replay. Prior to 2.0.10, you could seek backward in a replay, but you could only jump forward to the latest timestamp you'd already reached when watching the replay.
Patch 2.0.10 is said to be "coming soon". Check out the full post for the upcoming replay features here.
Celebrating the third year since StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty released, Blizzard has started a few events that will give some bonuses to players.
XP Bonus For a limited time, we’ve increased the XP gains you get when you play StarCraft II by 25%. It’s the perfect time to log in and play some Multiplayer, or Versus A.I., or Training Mode games. Perhaps you’d like to level up the race you play the least often. Now’s the time!
All Three for Free Once again, we’ve unlocked all three races in the StarCraft II Starter Edition. That means that any player who hasn’t yet upgraded to the full edition of StarCraft II can check out what it’s like to play from the Protoss and Zerg perspective. Combine that with Spawning, and you’ve got a holiday on your hands!
Also, there's a new wallpaper specifically for this celebration, drawn by Mr. Jack, which you can see below and download in multiple resolutions on this page.
San Diego Comic-Con 2013 is well underway, and attendees are able to visit the various Blizzard booths that are showing off some cool new items. Of the new licensed products revealed today, the Kerrigan statuette by Sideshow shown above is one of the two highly-detailed recreations of StarCraft II characters. The other StarCraft II recreation is the Raynor 1/6th scale figure, also by Sideshow, images of which you can see below.
The Raynor figure features LED lights and moving parts that make his suit look and feel authentic. The Raynor figure will be available for pre-order "really soon", and the Kerrigan statuette will be available for pre-order later this year. To keep track of the Kerrigan statuette's updates and previews, head over to the Sideshow site to add it to your alerts.