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Thread: Unit removals possible for HOTS

  1. #1

    Default Unit removals possible for HOTS

    So I haven't been on the forum in a while. I would think this possibility would make DemoSquid gleeful.

    I'm personally on board with doing whatever it takes to end up with the best game possible. I also think it would be kind of neat to go back and play WOL, HOTS and LOTV and there's different units.
    I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Unit removals possible for HOTS

    T'is an interesting topic, for sure. Here's my take on what multiplayer units could be removed or replaced in HotS, with detailed explanations. Some of this may sound familiar.

    Terran: Reaper, Banshee

    Long ago, we discussed the notion that shoving BW levels of units into WoL was a bad idea. More units per race creates more redundancy and confusion, and with two more games Blizzard would have to be very careful how much they inflated unit variety in multiplayer. I feel that the Reaper and Banshee are by far the two most redundant units in the Terran arsenal, and I suggested before WoL came out that they were the best units to remove from the game and save for an expansion. Every other unit is either too iconic or too valuable in their role right now. So I stand by my reasoning.

    The Reaper overlaps superbly with the Hellion (I still hate that name btw, preferred Jackal). Low HP, fast, anti-light attack. The strongest advantage of the Reaper is its cliff-jumping and anti-building attack. However, Medevacs can lift too, thus Hellion drops are very common today. On the Barracks, there is also the Marauder, which is are very strong against buildings. Some might say remove the Hellion instead, but that's illogical. You'd be left with only two factory units. The Hellion has important AoE damage and promotes a level of positional micro the Reaper does not. Blending the Firebat with the Vulture was a great idea and I will support the Hellion over the Reaper any day.

    The Banshee is a more controversial subject. The cloaking technology is an important part of the unit, and many feel is vital to the Terran identity. This provides a strong air harassment option. In Brood War, the Terran lacked a strong AtG option until they got the Battle Cruiser. Wraiths, like the Protoss Scout, were effective against air but embarrassing against ground targets to stay balanced. The most common form of Terran air attack was Dropship play and Science Vessels for support. I feel this has changed with SC2. Terran have more options now.

    First, the Viking effectively replaced both the Wraith and Goliath. Vikings, like the Wraith, continue to excel in the air, but their ability to transform into a strictly GtG mode lets them be focused to deal more damage in that mode than the Wraith ever could (over double). Secondly, the Dropship Medevac can now heal its biological cargo. This eliminates the need to use valuable cargo slots on the Medic infantry. Also, SCV's can now heal mechanical units while safely stored inside the Medevac. This make drops even more streamlined and effective than they were in Brood War. Finally, the Raven replaced the Science Vessel. This may actually be the most important change. Where the Science Vessel was restricted to Irradiate on generally biological targets, and EMP to kill off energy and shields, the Raven is far more versatile. Auto-turrets attack everything, and can provide a locational based play previously only created by the Siege Tanks. The Point Defense Drone has many uses, not least of which is providing cover for other incoming air units - like Vikings until they can land. The Seeker Missile, while costly, can have the same kind of impact as Irradiate did, but again without the restriction of biological targets. Its tracking feature also provides skilled micro opportunities.

    Ultimately, the only thing the Banshee has going for it is the cloaking, which could just as easily be given to another unit to fill another role. Both the Reaper and Banshee have one important thing in common, and that's the way they seem to fill the harassment niche. Honestly, I'm not convinced that role needs any more filling with the Hellion, drops, the Viking GtG mode, and Raven Turrets already existing.

    Protoss: Zealot, Observer, Phoenix, Colossus, Archon, Carrier, Mothership

    I know, I know. That's a lot of units to suggest. But hear me out.

    The Zealot is iconic, yet its probably the least iconic of the the three starting units. Its also, arguably, the least useful. That's not to say it doesn't have value. Recently, the Zealot has become integral in a strategy paired with the newly buffed Archon. Compared to the flexibility of the Marine and Zergling, however, it just doesn't compete. That's why Stalkers are seen far more often. Zealots can tank damn well, but who needs to tank when you can Blink away from damage? I could see the Zealot being replaced with little complaint.

    The Observer is extremely important. Its also extremely dull. It sits there cloaked... and that's about it. I'd eagerly support any way to improve the Observer, and have even suggested abilities for it. I would not cry at replacing it.

    The Phoenix is a pet peeve of mine. It needlessly replaced the Corsair, which would have been perfect for SC2 seeing as it was already a Dark Templar unit, now with the Dark and High tribes working together. Its ability to levitate other units is interesting, but it is the ONLY unit with an attack in SC2 that can never win you the game because it can't hit buildings. Even the Corruptor can become a AtG Brood Lord. Frankly, I vastly preferred the Phoenix's original ability, Overload, which created micro and locational play, as well as fitting its name better and being more Corsair-esque in its AoE. I would love to see the Phoenix replaced, and I know I'm not alone on that.

    The Colossus. I love this unit. Its everything I wanted the Reaver to be: mobile and accurate. However, I know there are many who still miss the glitchy, horrible Reaver and its expensive Scarabs (only Satan knows why). I don't want the Colossus to go, but there's always a chance Blizzard could cave to idiots - it's happened before.

    Who here misses the conceptual Twilight Archon? The epitome of Protoss evolution, a merger of both Void and Khala energy into a swirling mass of psychic destruction? I know I do. Instead, we're stuck with the regular old Archon, which until the last patch was pretty shitty. It doesn't even have any abilities. Where the hell is my Maelstrom? Blizzard themselves have said the Archon only exists to recycle High Templar. I find this unacceptable game design. Give me Twilight, hold the sparkles.

    Can I say "fuck the Carrier?" Fuck it. I hate the damn unit, always have since SC1. It's un-protossy. Swarming units belong to the Zerg. In SC1 it was broken as hell with unit mass effect and immortal Interceptors. It has no defined role except to be a giant banana. The Void Ray is by far a more interesting and useful unit. If the Carrier had indeed been converted into the Tempest, a unit which had a clear purpose, you wouldn't be reading this paragraph. The Carrier is rarely seen in play, and the reasons for it are clear. Get rid of the dead weight already Blizzard. Gameplay trumps nostalgia.

    Finally, the Mothership. What could have been glorious is now a joke. A final insult. What should have been the apex of Protoss might is now a corpulent Arbiter. We can do better. We MUST do better. Give the Protoss the flying caster-class unit they deserve.

    Zerg: Overseer, Infestor, Corruptor

    When I started compiling this post, I thought for sure that Zerg would have the most scrappable units, not Protoss. Funny how that works. So many Zerg units are now iconic or fill vital niches - Overlords, Zerglings, Roaches, Hydras, Mutas, Ultras, the Queen. My options here were surprisingly limited.

    In a recent interview, the Overseer was already been acknowledged by Blizzard as a problem unit. It just doesn't see the play they want it to, and it lacks "oompf." I feel its detection and abilities could be reasonably re-purposed. The Changeling was a horrible replacement for Parasite.

    The Infestor, while having important abilities, could be altered significantly. Many people still miss the Defiler, although I don't count myself among them. I like the Infestor, I just feel its not reaching its potential.

    Finally, the Corruptor. It honestly might as well be called the Devourer. Its another unit that is simply not reaching its potential; a rehash of something old that was also fairly mediocre. Mutas are strong, but Zerg need a other AtA option, and the Corruptor isn't cutting it. The Brood Lord is an important unit with a strong siege niche and a welcome swarmy Zerg feel. I have no desire to see it go, which is why I always supported the Brood Lord being a mutation of the Mutalisk instead of the Corruptor. It makes more sense mechanics and lore-wise, and the Mutalisk is a more iconic and important unit than the Corruptor. Ultimately, the Corruptor is a failure. Replace it.
    Last edited by DemolitionSquid; 06-01-2011 at 11:05 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Unit removals possible for HOTS

    To be fair, I hope they don't scrap units. I'd rather have them edit them. Keep the art, but try to adjust the units' abilities, stats and placement in the tech tree. No need to change all the damn artwork.

    Example with the Overseer: They could simply lower its tier, give the detector ability as a Hatchery upgrade to the Overlord, and/or make the Overlord speed upgrade a Hatchery thing, and perhaps simply add new abilities to the Overseer, perhaps only enhancing its art, not re-doing the whole thing. (To be fair, it's one of my favorite Zerg units aestethically)

    I hope they don't remove the Ultralisk, but merely update it (Concept Omegalisk/Uberlisk, anyone? If it can stun infantry with those tentacles, could be worth it... =))

    Colossus? No way they'll change that. Way too good.

    Reapers? Ok, one unit that isn't that used per race is fine, as Blizzard have said (though they have also contradicted that by saying they want to replace the Reaper, Mothership and Overseer). I'd have the reaper's guns become weaker and perhaps make it an earlier scout/attack unit (T1 instead of T1.5 or T2, where it is at, perhaps bumping Marauders a bit in the tech tree, but buffing their researched ability, making it research faster or what not), while also giving it a later tier upgrade to throw those D-8 bombs. I don't see how they can justify removing Reapers in the lore...

    Carriers? I totally agree with what you said. I love the idea of a giant Protoss warship, and loved their design in SC1, but that's about it...Perhaps had they given it a giant beam (like in the SC2 prologue on the install screens and in the comics and lore) and made the interceptors a weaker, secondary (perhaps upgradeable) thing, or a temporary ability, that could've made it work (while also scrapping the Mothership). Besides, I don't see what's wrong with a Mothership that can fire a weakened version of the purifier beam, like in the first-ever SC2 live demo? That could certainly make it more used.

    I hear that about the Twilight Archon; I'd love to see Dark and Twilight archons, or heck, just Twilight Archons now. Give them abilities, make them unique, I don't know...

    I loved Reavers, but let's face it, except as a campaign unit in LotV, I don't see it coming back, nor a huge need for them.

    Infestors need to feel more like infestors...the current version is just a joke to still slightly keep to the lore idea of what an infestor should be like. To be fair, it doesn't fly with me. Could be more awesome and swarmy...But the unit's art is very good.

    Corruptor...Sheesh, does anyone even use this unit? Only when the need for AA rises, but even then, Hydralisks and Mutalisks are just a better, easier choice. I agree with the Brood Lord being a Muta mutation instead of a Corruptor one. What's a mutalisk if it can't mutate? Makes more sense lore-wise this way...I'd rather have them try and make it unique like they did with the whole "corrupt" ability. This is why Zerg are barely used and people feel they are underpowered. So many risks were taken with them, and those choices felt so Zergy and natural, but the developers were scared that they went too crazy with the Zerg and were on the way of making them OP, that they just scrapped it all...What a shame.

    Viking? I rarely see its ground mode in action...Give it flames, make it a ground unit with an air transformation upgrade, and give the Terrans the Predator (air unit, not the cybercat), from the alpha (just without the laser ability as that is already on the Point Defense Drone). Sounds good to me. And I guess, forget about the Hellion, then...But I doubt they'll remove that unit, so who knows.

    Banshees...Let's see. I don't find them very useless, and they do see use. The design could look more advanced and hi-tech, but I doubt we'll see anything special for this unit. Perhaps a small rehash of the attack, or an attack upgrade that makes it do AoE damage... (like in the alpha or in the campaign)

    You didn't talk much about the Battlecruisers. To be honest, they should bring those campaign abilities into multiplayer, perhaps more players will end up using them. But don't just do it in a closed employee alpha/beta, do it in an open beta, or at the very least, a friends & family beta, where everyone or at least many can test them, and see if they make BC's OP or overused.

    The rest, I highly doubt will change.
    Last edited by Alex06; 06-02-2011 at 12:09 AM.

    Kudos to Arkceangel for the Terran avatar and sig!

  4. #4

    Default Re: Unit removals possible for HOTS

    I don't mind if they scrap units. There's a few really needless ones right now that have almost no role or become abusive.

    Here's my list of possibilities.

    Reaper - Constant changes have made this early game harass unit a waste of resources once you get enough to be useful. They're glass cannons that are only good at killing workers and buildings, and little anything else. Banshees arguably do what a Reaper does and has much more long-term damage potential for similar amount of resources worth. Banshee tech also forces the opponent into different tech paths or compositions, whereas reapers are easily counterable.

    Overseer - We all know. This thing's useless, might as well give detection back to overlords as an upgrade.

    Mothership - Lets face it, the Blizz devs had their chance at making this a good unit, but ultimately their 'for the casuals' decision should be left to singleplayer instead. This unit really has no place in multiplayer, and its high tech path doesn't make it a good 'casual' unit to make.

    Archon - It's a plan B unit. It should be an awesome, buff unit that's expensive to get, but it's more of an oh-shit meatshield.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Unit removals possible for HOTS

    Infestor? Are you mad!?

  6. #6

    Default Re: Unit removals possible for HOTS

    I don't want them to scrap any units. Just upgrade upon what you have.

    Anyways, I've told it before, I believe that the best way to approach expansions would be to introduce a new "faction" mechanic for each race. Basically what I mean by that is that at some point during a game (maybe when you reach T2?) you would have to chose a faction. Once you chose that faction, you would only be able to go in distinct tech paths that cannot be accessed through other factions.

    For example, lets say you reach T2, you change your faction to UED, you get access to a whole new variety of high tech starport units. Of course, all of your units and buildings(even non-faction specific ones) would display characteristic features so that your opponent can easily scout the faction that you picked.

    They wouldn't need to add 173284710943 factions for HotS. Maybe just 2 different ones for each race (Raynor's Raider or Dominion, High Templar tribe or Dark Templar tribe, Kerrigan followers or Renegade zerg) then add one more for each race in LotV.
    Last edited by sandwich_bird; 06-02-2011 at 11:11 AM.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Unit removals possible for HOTS

    Sounds like an interesting idea, but would it fit to "esport" multiplayer?

  8. #8

    Default Re: Unit removals possible for HOTS

    CnC3 expansion went with that concept of factions and it just made the game less fun.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Unit removals possible for HOTS

    Considering that they don't want to add more units, I could see them making it so buildings have more impact on the battlefield and be used more on the battlefield.

    I could also see them adding upgrades(not abilities) that drastically change early tier units (like maybe they'll put that either/or evolution thing of the zergling into multiplayer). I mean imagine there being a Hive level upgrade to the zergling that actually allows you to spawn 3 zerglings for each egg. That would be huge. Zerglings would be so massable so quickly even more but it's a relatively small change.

    For a while I really didn't like the idea of blizzard removing units but now I'm thinking that it might be necessary. Here are the units I think Blizzard could or should consider (that is not to say that there won't be large stat changes):

    Terran - Reaper, Helion, Thor, Raven, Banshee

    - Personally I didn't really like how any of these units in regards to the terran feel. Like none of them made me think of an army holding the line and all that stuff. They didn't make me think of an army thats prepared for war but rather an bunch of raiders. You know, hit and run sort of stuff. I want that "HOLD THE LINE!" back.
    -The ravens abilities were cool and were very terrany but I don't think that it's an irreplacable unit.

    Zerg - Overseer, Roach, Infester, Corrupter, Ultralisk

    - Personally I just don't like how the roach changed the way the zerg play. I wan't the zerg to be running up and ripping you to bits. Not shooting at you from a distance.
    - The Overseer I don't think offers enough to justify its own existance
    - The infester isn't bad but i think the zerg spell caster should be more about helping the zergs other units then being able to destroy an enemies economy on its own.
    - The corrupter is another unit that isn't bad but I don't think it's irreplacable. The broodlord could keep it around if they don't want to transfer the broodlords evolution to another unit.
    - The ultralisk is a classic but that's it. I wouldn't mind seeing a different big unit that functions differently. Like maybe a big unit that has alot of armor and health and draws enemy fire(to protect the smaller units).

    Protoss - Void ray, Zeolot, High Templar, Dark Templar, Archon, Mothership

    - In regards to the Zeolot, templars and the archon. I could see them changing how the function in relation to each other. Perhaps in Legacy of the void they'll make it so that the dark templar is basically an individual upgrade to the zeolot(after all they are both melee units).
    - Or maybe they'll have a Twighlight templar/archon.
    - The void ray is an alright unit for me but I find it functions a battle in a weird way and I don't like it.
    - The mothership I'm sure they'll change up to make it "oooooooo" and "aaaaaaaa." Perhaps they'll replace one of the protoss air units with a bit more standard caster and make the mothership big and powerful like it's supposed to be.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Unit removals possible for HOTS

    Quote Originally Posted by Jconant View Post
    CnC3 expansion went with that concept of factions and it just made the game less fun.
    I haven't tried the CnC3 expansion, but sub-factions worked very well in CnC Generals: Zero Hour IMO. (As in: it was really fun)
    Each side had 3 subfaction, while still having the "normal" one to pick from ie;
    USA
    - USA Air Force
    - USA Superweapon
    - USA Laser

    The downside in Generals:Zero Hour was the balancing - But I believe blizzard could balance such a thing much better.
    Starcraft universe fan: Singleplayer and novels

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