BlizzCon 2010: Upcoming Starcraft 2 Mods
While there was no word on the upcoming Starcraft 2 expansion at the Blizzcon opening ceremony, there was some exciting news for Starcraft 2 fans. Blizzard has been hard at work on four new mods, which will be released one at a time before the “Heart of the Swarm” expansion comes out.
Aiur Chef (a parody of Iron Chef) is a mod that will have players taking control of a spatula wielding zealot with a pot on his head. Your mission is to hunt down different ingredients and cook up more point scoring dishes than your opponents. These games are eight way free-for-alls that will have you scouring a map fraught with peril just to bring home the bacon… er… Ultralisk. The catch is that the other “chefs” may just decide to chop you up instead of their entree.
StarJeweled is a puzzle-based game similar to Bejeweled, that will allow you to acquire new units based on energy you get from matching 3 of the same jewels. If you line up the correct colored jewels, you might send an Immortal or Ultralisk at your opponent. If your not good at puzzle games, you’ll be stuck with the few measly marines that spawn automatically. You may want to break out Dr. Mario to practice for this one.
Left 2 Die is Blizzard’s take on Valve’s popular “Left 4 Dead” series. Terran players cooperate to hold off wave after wave of Zerg that include special units such as the “Kaboomer.” If you ever wondered what happens when you cross a Baneling with a Boomer, this is the mod for you.
I actually got some hands-on time with Left 2 Die and enjoyed it immensely. The map is the same as the “Outbreak” mission from the campaign, but you are playing cooperatively with another player to defend your base and every time you kill a special Zerg unit or building, you get biomass, which you can use to upgrade new technology. I was a little unprepared for how vicious the special Zerg units were and when something called a “Spotter” started spewing death on me from above I had to frantically call to my teammate for help. His marines barely brought this thing down. Afterwards, gratuitous amounts of missile turrets were set up at the base entrance to avoid another incident.
The last game is “Blizzard DoTA.” Based on the gameplay of “Defense of the Elders,” this mod gives you the chance to pit Ultralisks against Night Elves and Thor’s against Abominations. I didn’t get to play this one but I like the idea. Who hasn’t battled their Kerrigan action figure against a Demon Hunter? What? Just me?
The great thing about this mod is that once it’s released, the heroes from Warcraft 3 will be be available to the map editing community of Starcraft 2. In fact, Blizzard announced that all these custom maps will be “unlocked” so players can peak under the hood and modify them as they see fit. The game developers know Starcraft 2 fans are in for a long wait for the next expansion, and they’ve decided to whet the community’s appetite with some exciting new mods. I know “Blizzard DoTA” isn’t out yet, but I’m calling it now: “I get Kerrigan.”