As much as I love StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void’s co-op missions, there’s no denying that the experience wears a little thin over time. Blizzard at least somewhat alleviated that problem few months ago, with the addition of Chain of Ascension.
Unfortunately, one new mission would never fix the problem, not in the long run anyways. What might though, are mutators and mastery levels, which are coming to the RTS with patch 3.3.
It seems Blizzard took inspiration from Hearthstone’s Tavern Brawl feature, and went about developing a new weekly mutator rotation for co-op missions. What exactly are mutators though?
Simply put, they are modifiers that change up the core game experience. Here’s what Blizzard have planned for Oblivion Express for example…
- Walking Infested – Every enemy you destroy will spawn infested terrors. The bigger the unit, the more infested will rise from it’s corpse.
- Outbreak – Continuous waves of the infested horde march against your base, forcing you to keep your defenses tight at all times.
- Darkness – The fog of war is replaced with pure darkness and the mission’s objectives are hidden from the mini-map. You won’t know where the trains are and you won’t know where attacks are coming from.
The above will be part of the first week of mutators. Here’s what’s planned for week two, which focuses on the mission, “Lock & Load”…
- Speed Freaks – The enemy moves faster than any unit you have at your disposal, giving you little time to react to their tactics.
- Time Warp – The Time Warp ability will be used against you, slowing the movement and attack speed of your units. These fields of time-manipulation must be avoided if you hope to succeed.
- Mag-nificient – Mag mines will be scattered all over the map, forcing your army to move with extreme caution. If you trip their proximity sensors, they’ll fly straight towards the unit that triggered them, causing terrible, terrible damage to you, or your ally.
Holy crap, that all sounds nice and stressful! I’ll be playing on casual difficulty for sure, thank you very much.
Where does one go when a Commander has been ranked up to level 15? Nowhere! At least, that’s what the answer used to be. Blizzard definitely looked at Diablo III and its paragon levels for inspiration on this new feature…
Any experience you earn on a maxed out level 15 commander will go towards earning Mastery levels, up to a maximum of 90. Each level grants you a point that you can spend on any of your level 15 commanders to increase their power. For example, you can spend points on Kerrigan to increase her attack damage or her energy regeneration rate. You’ll be able to decrease the time it takes to deploy Swann’s Laser Drill or increase the health of all his structures, including his turrets.
Mastery levels sound like an absolute must if a player wants to tackle a mutator map on higher difficulties. It’s a pretty awesome new feature actually, and one I’m quite happy to see.
What about you? Are you happy with these brand new StarCraft II features? Will you be going back to play some more co-op? I think Blizzard are taking the game mode in the right direction for sure with the inclusion of mutators and mastery levels. I wonder what else they have in store?
Last Updated: May 10, 2016