Starcraft 2: Heart of the Swarm – Guide to Kerrigan’s Abilities
In Starcraft 2: Heart of the Swarm, the single player campaign functions like that of an RPG. Kerrigan gains levels and powers through assorted mutations which arise from completing missions and bonus objectives. Her forces protect her as she continues to harness the power and grow. Take advantage of her on the front lines in your main army as you work your way through the missions. If she dies, she’ll respawn at a hatchery after 60 seconds. As Kerrigan continues to gain levels, her hit points, armor, damage and energy will increase.
Kerrigan’s abilities can be switched around. You can only choose one ability from each pair.
Crushing Grip – 50 Energy: Area of effect stuns enemies for 3 seconds and deals 30 damage over time.
Chain Reaction – Kerrigan’s attack also deals up to 10 damage to up to four secondary targets as a passive ability.
Recommendations: In large scale base assault missions, I like to go with Chain Reaction. You’re almost always going to come across enemies that are clustered together and the splash damage will help soften and finish off most light to medium units. In later missions, you’ll find yourself against heavier units like protoss colossus or terran thor units. Crushing Grip helps by temporarily incapacitating them and giving your armies 3 free seconds where they can attack them without retaliation.
Kinetic Blast – 50 Energy: Kerrigan deals 300 damage to an enemy unit or structure. 10 second cooldown.
Heroic Fortitude – Kerrigan gains 200 hit points and her regeneration rate increases by 100.
Recommendations: I prefer having Kerrigan a little tankier. There will be times where she ends up in an engagement and my armies get wiped out. The crucial health difference helps in providing that extra edge in finishing off enemy units. But the ability to instantly destroy most units with the press of a key should not be underestimated. Kinetic Blast is great at instantly removing battlecruisers or other out of reach units from a skirmish. Go with Heroic Fortitude unless you’re involved in missions that have more dangerous threats.
Zergling Reconstitution: Every 30 seconds, up to 10 killed zerglings respawn from the primary hatchery at no cost.
Improved Overlords – Overlords morph instantly and provide 50% extra control.
Recommendations: Improved Overlords gets the nod. You get a larger supply per overlord and they’re instant. As your army gets larger and diverse, you may find that you’re not creating zerglings to justify Zergling Reconstitution. Sure they end up being free and recurring, but I’d rather have that supply for other powerful units instead.
Wild Mutation – 50 Energy: Allied zerg units in the target area gain +200 hit points and +100% increased attack speed for 10 seconds. Heroic units are unaffected. 25 second cooldown.
Spawn Banelings – 50 Energy: Kerrigan spawns six banelings, which have a timed lifespan. 25 second cooldown.
Recommendations: Wild Mutation is great as it instantly buffs the zerg units that you want. It makes them instantly larger and able to take more punishment while increasing the rate at which they do damage. Useful in case your army gets caught off guard and your forces need to buy extra time. Also handy to have in missions that involve a race against time. Spawn Banelings is great against the select situations where there’s big threats in the way or if you need targets softened up. In most cases, I’d go with Wild Mutation.
Twin Drones – Drones morph in groups of two at no additional cost or control.
Malignant Creep – Creep grants units and structures faster regeneration and 30% attack speed. Creep tumors spread creep faster and farther.
Recommendations: More drones means more resources. More resources leads to a bigger and better army. Having stronger creep is cool but I feel as though it’s best served on defensive missions or if you know your base will be under attack. Being on creep gives units faster regeneration and attack speed. I figure in most missions your army is going to be on the offensive anyway and there won’t be any creep for you to rely on in enemy bases.
Infest Broodlings – Kerrigan’s attacks infest enemies. If they are killed quickly, they spawn two broodlings with timed life.
Fury – Each attack temporarily increases Kerrigan’s attack speed by 15% cumulatively, to a maximum of 75%.
Recommendations: Combine Fury with Chain Reaction and watch as she singlehandedly melts armies. If you’re relying on massive numbers for your game play, then Infest Broodlings is a solid option. At the rate she massacres units, she will continue to spawn broodlings to help distract enemies while your main army finishes them off.
Apocalypse – 100 Energy: Deals 300 damage to enemy units and 700 damage to enemy structures in a large area.
Spawn Leviathan – 100 energy. This ability starts on a 300 second (5 minute) cooldown. It summons a leviathan with timed life.
Recommendations: Apocalypse is like a nuclear weapon which is available every 5 minutes. I use this as my secret weapon in case I come across something unexpected. Great if base defenses need to be cleared out quickly or if an expansion has to be levelled to move forward. The leviathan adds another unit to your army with powerful abilities and strong attacks.
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