StarCraft 2’s competitive side is always in flux, always looking for that perfect balance, and the dev team gave us a little look into plans for a rework of some Terran staples. Marauders, Ravens and Vikings are getting some tweaks, with Marauders getting the biggest changes. Check out what’s coming and get your build orders… uh, in order.
We appreciate the continued feedback and discussion. After reviewing the most recent round and observing more high-level play, we feel good about continuing with our plans to reduce Anti-Armor Missile’s late-game strength and improve Terran‘s mid-game strength in the TvP matchup.
We considered different options for rebalancing the Anti-Armor Missile, but we settled on damage reduction. This change decreases its late-game damage potential while minimally affecting utility in the mid-game, where it can still be used as a reliable source of armor reduction. Another popular suggestion that we considered was to reduce the speed or acceleration of the missile in order to promote more counter-play via splitting. While we felt this change would have similar effects in the late-game, we thought this would be too much of a hit to its mid-game strength, when more manageable armies allow for easier splitting.
We realize Terrans will take a hit to their late-game strength due to the Anti-Armor Missile change, so we feel this is a good time to provide a buff to the Viking. We will be increasing Viking health to increase its survivability, specifically against area-of-effect abilities like Psionic Storm and Parasitic Bomb, which are commonly used in the late game. In addition, this buff will aid Terrans against Colossi, a unit that has become more popular in TvP over the last few months. This buff doesn’t fully offset the Anti-Armor Missile nerf in the extreme late game, but as we mentioned in the last community update, we’d like to focus more on how Terran’s mid-game power scales into the late-game, which will hopefully grant Terrans with more control over that transition.
Near the end of Heart of the Swarm, Zerg players would struggle when transitioning from Ling/Bane/Muta compositions to Ultralisks because of how effective Marauders were as a counter. At the beginning of Legacy of the Void, we split the Marauder’s attack into two separate shots to encourage Terran players to transition to more specialized units against Hive tech. Throughout LotV, a popular suggestion has been to revert this change because it also had the side effect of reducing the lethality of the Terran army in the mid game against Protoss. We believe this is a good time to do so, since we’re now less worried about strength of Marauders in TvZ. For one, Ultralisks now have one additional starting armor and are thus more resistant to both Marine and Marauder attacks. In addition, Zerg is now less reliant on Ultralisks to stabilize in the late-game, as Hydralisks, Vipers, and Brood Lords are now frequently used for transitioning. As for TvP, we believe this change will improve Terran’s ability to apply more consistent pressure during the mid game. This change will be particularly noticeable against Light Protoss units (Zealots, Adepts) when the Terran is behind in upgrades.
When we reintroduced the Raven’s Auto-Turret ability, we reduced the cast range from 3 to 1 in order to provide more of an opportunity for counter-play against Auto-Turret harass. Our feeling now is that we may have reduced the range too much—Auto-Turrets just aren’t being used much for harass. In addition, this cast-range increase allows Ravens to place Turrets out of range of anti-air static defenses, which slightly helps when attempting to break stalemates in the late-game.
Our current plan is to release this balance update, along with the new ladder season, on May 15, but this is subject to change. As always, thank you for your continued feedback and let us know what you think!