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Generally favorable reviews- based on 1133 Ratings

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  1. Mar 13, 2013
    Overall, an excellent package. Blizzard has carefully crafted this expansion portion of Starcraft 2 to feel very different from Wings of Liberty with respect to its single player campaign, and the effort pays off. By having a different interface between missions used to tell the story, as well as mission structures that tend to favor the "zerging" mentality, they create a very different dynamic in how that story unfolds. Some of the dialogue is a bit on lame side (from a writing perspective, voice acting is top notch as usual), but generally this is a story that has weight and gravity, and sets itself up well for the grand finale with Legacy of the Void. I'm terrible at the competitive multiplayer, but it is still excellent fun (balance is different with new units, but still very tight). Great job Blizzard! Expand
  2. Mar 12, 2013
    the story of heart of swarm is very bad, but the cinematics are very good. Heart of the Swarm's gameplay has been focused way too much on e-sports and multiplayer. They oblivion de people who play singlepalyer
  3. Mar 12, 2013
    the game is everything they promised. if you loved wings of liberty, you'll love this game as well. the multiplayer is running surprisingly smoothly. it's all working just like it did during beta. in fact, there was more lag during the beta than there is now. the slick new interface and leveling system should be a huge draw as well, in case multiplayer is not your particular cup of tea. this is the ultimate pc game, it requires fast hands and quick decision making. the ultimate skill based game for those who love the feeling of constant improvement. Expand
  4. Mar 15, 2013
    Very average. I think most of these 9 & 10 reviews are based off people still on the hype train. The writing, average, the story average, the game mechanics average and nothing excelling or pushing the boundaries. That said nothing is bad about this game, its just it never seems to go anywhere. Everything is predictable. The cinematic videos are superb but this is a game and not a movie. They do redeem this from scoring lower. A lot of potential wasted, a buy for the true fans or people, an easy skip for everyone else. Expand
  5. Mar 12, 2013
    we wait more than 10 years for this, f--k very much blizzard, was sc2 a bad space soup opera a bad hollywood story, what happened with the dark intelligent story of sc1.

    All the technology and good visual art, can´t hide the junk story is sc2, respect the old fans and new fans with a good story that will last not something who will rise and dissapear fast like coca cola Froth. Greedy
    pays more than art i supossed.

    Did they spent the whole budget in the game except to have a good writer.
  6. Mar 12, 2013
    I have played Starcraft for 13 years, Im a total fan. In HOTS The Campaign is awesome, it has a lot of cinematics, they have a lot of quality in graphics and plot, the AI in BRUTAL is not very strong but if you make a big mistake you will lost and i believe that the AI is not very strong because Blizzard want that new players and the lazy ones get fun and finish the game (Brood war was harder). The plot is 2/3 you get fun on the campaign. The only bad thing about the campaign is that is short, you finish it in at least 10 hours. The next part of the game is the MULTIPLAYER, it has new units, and with 7 new units is a different game now, you can win games that for sure you will have lost in WOL. Playing as Terran you can use widow mines to finish draws, same goes to oracle with protoss and Swarm host for zerg. the ladder is not fully balanced but as always more patches will come all over again to improve the game. This time the multiplayer is HARD because people that play HOTS already bought WOL they have skill and experience and you can choose the server you want (You can be Master in NA and Platinum in Korea). At last, the game has A LOT of extra minigames in custom, unranked games, coop vs AI. My recommendation is the next: If you only want to play the campaign and not multiplayer wait for the price to drop. If you want Campaign but most important the MULTIPLAYER (The real game) buy it because you really feel the difference between WOL and HOTS and HOTS is harder. Expand
  7. Mar 12, 2013
    The overall design of the game is amazing. The sound and music are great, the graphic is dated but very beautiful and full of details with plenty of cut-scenes (much more as in WoL and they are of a much higher quality). The missions are very varied and very fun to play. The game is a little bit easy, even under the highest difficulty (at least for me), but I'm fine with it. If somebody wants a challenge there are mastery missions where you play a extra hard version of the mission with all upgrades unlocked I haven't tested it yet. So, from a design standpoint is game is very, very good. So why I'm giving only 8/10? Because the story is kinda meh and the script is very, very cheesy taking every overused line of dialog there is and every overused cliche. Blizzard (Metzen!) must work on their scripts! But in the end: If you liked WoL or Starcraft/Broodwar then you can buy this and have very much fun. If you like RTS games, you can buy this, too. If you have no idea what Starcraft is pick WoL up (costs not much), play it and take a look if this kind of game is something for you. Expand
  8. Mar 13, 2013
    A good, solid and LATE expansion. The quality of the campaign is good but not as good as WoL. Reason being the characters that drive the plot forward are simply not as interesting. This is an unfortunate side effect of playing the Zerg race: They generally have no minds of their own. This fact means the only interesting character in the swarm is Kerrigan and her focus is entirely on revenge. So this limits where the story can go a great amount. That aside, the Missions are the same general fare that can be expected with a few new twists. The highlight being the Evolution Missions where you test and then choose from 1 of 2 genetic mutations for a specific unit. This really gives you the feel of driving the Swarm's evolution forward to deadly effect. Other than that, it's all about Kerrigan and her very, very powerful unlockable as you level abilities. I will leave the details out as it is much funner to find out for yourself. Multiplayer, though I have played only 4-5 matches, is as strong as it has ever been and will be the focus of many a player for years to come. There are a few interface improvements and the new units are interesting without being overpowered. Old strategies still work most of the time so you won't feel betrayed or thrown in over your head. So to wrap I just want to say I don't understand how it took 4 years to make this expansion. Other expansions on other games with similar content took far less time. I wonder if they have a small development team or they intentionally delayed the launch. That aside, as it stands HotS is a very solid expansion to a great game. While the campaign could have been better it is still very entertaining and the multiplayer will keep you happy for a very long time. Worth the money. Expand
  9. Mar 24, 2013
    This game just made me miss brood war even more. What the happened to blizzard's writers? Why the are there boss battles? Why do the primal zergs look like naga from warcraft 3? What happened to the factions battling for survival? Now they just fight over who is a bigger jerkface and who kills more and there is some sort of wuv story. The gameplay is still a gimick fest. Who's deathball can kill the opposing deathball first. Who's unit can puke some gimicky ability to pull some nonsensical to exploit an otherwise sensical situation. Why can a flying zerg act like some sort of frog on a massive unit like a colluses. I know its a game but that is just taking it too far. At least be in the realm of believable. WoL was mediocre, but this is just terrible. Points for polished cinematics i guess... Luckily I borrowed a friends account to play so jokes on you blizzard. I enjoyed the fact that I got to enjoy your labor for a minor enjoyment out of your product Expand
  10. Mar 12, 2013
    I'm just a few missions into campaign, and I can already say I'm excited for the story. I've been playing Starcraft since it's original release years and years ago, and this is just completely epic. I cannot wait to finish the story, and hop online. A good price for what will seem to be a completely new game. Also, it seems there were some slight graphics improvements. Everything seems a lot nicer. Also, some models seemed to have changed. Expand
  11. Mar 12, 2013
    Here's the trouble. Nevermind the paid reviews flodding metacritic (and there will be more). Nevermind the ad dollar scraps thrown out at the "gaming journalists" to buy their opinions. Nevermind the massive hype that Blizzard/Activision has pushed and will continue to push from Youtube to the Super Bowl. At the end of the day, the play of this game is a rehash of the last chapter, shot through with more plot holes than a shotgun to swiss cheese, and wrapped up with gorgeously empty cinematics. This game is certainly everything that they promised it would be. It's also a complete perversion of everything that they once promised in games. The scenarios play out just like Wings of Liberty, in that they teach you basic mechanics you picked up already in the last game, pushing you to choose certain paths that ultimately have no impact on the ending. The play does not translate over to multiplayer either, same as Wings of Liberty did not. The writing is depressingly cliche, while the voice actors inflect with a sort of "I can't believe we're saying this stuff" vibe. And as of yet, we'll have to see how multiplayer shakes out, but the previews of units and live gameplay show that there will be an awful lot to tweak on the dev's side. All of this for a price that so many other games can beat. You have to ask yourself if this truly is the best that one of the largest gaming corps can do. There will be a moment in HotS and you will see many that get close when the naive twelve-year-old inside you that once thrived on cool and interesting gameplay, dies once again, and the bittersweet aftertaste of nostalgia will never be washed away by all the dew and doritos in the world. I won't spoil it for you, but if you're so interested to see what's become of the "point" of modern gaming, you can look at gameplay videos on Youtube or just check out the other franchises drained of fun by BlizzActi: SC2, WoW, and D3. It will be the last time I buy a product from Blizzard, as I should've done long ago. Expand
  12. Mar 12, 2013
    For my taste, Heart of the Swarm's gameplay has been focused way too much on e-sports. It's not "playing" a game anymore but learning modes of behavior to win. Even within the singleplayer campaign, 99% of the missions seem to be about getting used to the way the race of the zerg is supposed to be played in multiplayer-mode: Gameplay is frantic, almost every mission has some kind of timelimit and you're supposed to be clicking everywhere on the map at once. Building a base with nice defences? None here, that's "not the way the zerg are played". In Starcraft 2, the campaign was the only fun part of the game for me, because it wasn't always frantic and hectic... Since there are no good RTS-alternatives right now, it's a shame that SC2:HotS is so monotonously action-oriented. The GUI and menus of the game strengthen these aspects: You access the campaign/story of HotS via a generic button within an e-sports-oriented interface. Expand
  13. Mar 13, 2013
    THE BAD--Heart of the Swarm goes down the dreaded path of "the prophecy" storyline. Attention writers: Prophecies are OVERUSED and are LAME! They are cliche and in this case the prophecy featured in SC2 retcons the original Starcraft and BroodWar, yielding many of the plot elements in both games nonsensical and convoluted. Game is also WAY TOO EASY. In the original Starcraft some of the later levels make you sweat. In this one the AI never cloaks, NEVER, for example. Lastly, the game is designed for casual players, which means everything is watered down and dumbed down.

    THE GOOD-- Cool cinematics. Nice graphics. The beginning of HoS pretty cool, which subsequently leads you on, makes you think that maybe the writers up at Blizzard learned from their mistakes with Wings of Liberty, but then after the 4th level the game falls flat on its face. Game has good multiplayer, but the expansion only adds a few new units that nobody wanted.
  14. Mar 14, 2013
    As a long time fan of StarCraft and Broodwar, I was naively hoping for a better campaign than what WoL was. I figured it could have only been better, but I was wrong. I guess as long as DBrowder is at the helm, you're going to get the most cliched snooze fest imaginable.

    Where it fails most is what made StarCraft such a memorable and great game. The story. I cannot begin to explain how
    weak and underwhelming the story and dialogue are. Gone are any sort of characterization or suttle narrative undertones. There is no heart, no personality, no life, and no atmosphere. Gone is the once articulate, conniving, Mengsk who has been reduced to a babbling old fool, the fiery Jim Raynor who is now simply there to be a damsel in distress. Kerrigan's actions and motivations are consistently questionable; there are a lot of failed attempts at evoking emotion, but frankly, you just don't care about her or Jim anymore. The flavorful and immerse world that was StarCraft has once again been destroyed by $$BlizzActivison$$. What the hell happened to the storytelling? The heart? The universe? All I see now is a empty shell.


    The actual gameplay is fine, the UI good, and the missions fun though repetitive at times. I'm reviewing mainly the campaign/single-player here. The multi-player is polished and the visuals are smooth, if you don't care about the campaign at all (and just shelled out $40 for a few new units), then I'd give it a 7/10 or 8/10. Blizzard could've continued StarCraft's legend if they gave two about the lore and could've been the best at that, but I guess they wanted to focus on eSports and follow in the shadow of LoL.
  15. Mar 12, 2013
    As the first review to not give it either a 10 or a 4 or less, let me say that this game is far from perfect. The gameplay is still the same Starcraft 2 you love, but with more units and a new story. The new units add a an interesting feel to competitive matches. unfortunately, the story is lackluster and the big glaring retcon is annoying, especially because the story would have worked fine without it. The gameplay in the campaign starts you out at a disgustingly slow pace. Over an hour of a tutorial in an expansion wasn't necessary whatsoever. The difficulty is way too easy. I played the game on hard an I didn't even need to pay attention to win for the most part. You have the illusion of choice for missions like deciding to use different weapons to do the same thing, but in reality this tacked on feature does not challenge the intelligence of the player and, I have to say that while playing I felt like my intelligence was actually being insulted. Luckily the game picks up in later levels, getting far more enjoyable. Forget the main characters because the zerg are interesting creatures to have conversations with. Overall, it's a fine expansion pack with some flaws, but If you enjoyed Starcraft 2, you will definitely enjoy Heart of the Swarm Expand
  16. Mar 12, 2013
    If you're buying the game for it's story then you're in for a royal disappointment, but if you get it for the gameplay then you're going to have one hell of a time with it.
  17. Mar 14, 2013
    I'm a SC2 Fan, and personally liked WoL a lot. Now, I play SC2 for the REASON it's supposed to be played, which is a competitive RTS and E-sport. That's the strength of this game and the sole reason the first one lasted 2 decades. If you judge Starcraft by its campaign then you are not very smart, it's like going to eat steak at red lobster....they serve it, but you'd be a fool to go there specifically to eat one. That aside, the improvements to Battlenet, and Blizzard's desperate attempt to keep up with the current Moba E-sports has made this expansion a good improvement over WoL in so many areas that the list is too long to mention. The Balance of the game is off, of course it would be of, it's a new expansion, but frankly I didn't expected to be this bad considering the extensive Beta and good feedback they got. So, all in all, is a good expansion, good improvements, a poorly written campaign (considering the wonders you can do with the Starcraft universe), with several of the units being potentially overpowered for the first few months and some other minor technical improvements. Not a 10 in my books, even though I'm a fan, but definitely not bad at all. Expand
  18. Mar 12, 2013
    what happened to you blizzard, you can´t say simply we did this game, period. people expect in us to do a good job and they don't forgive us if we act like we dont mean it.

    In a narrative game their soul is THE story not only the programming, if don't is like a beautiful girl with no brain, you can f..r but not marry her, i'm not trying to offend women. Just blizzard must take the path
    again i wish that they had the talent and i hope they have it yet. Expand
  19. Mar 20, 2013
    An uninspiring continuation to the SC saga; the campaign is formulaic and short (any solid RTS player will probably take less than 8 hours to complete), and the plot is without great vision or scope. Probably a requirement for online play since the majority of players will migrate over to HotS, but not worth the price as a single player experience.
  20. Mar 12, 2013
    Though I haven't played through the entire campaign yet, the game sports new units, a fascinating storyline and campaign, epic cinematic sequences that match, if not surpass, the quality of Final Fantasy, and new and interesting ways to evolve your forces. If you enjoyed StarCraft 2 a lot, you won't want to pass it up. Those who, for some strange reason did not like the Wings of Liberty campaign (presumably because you are a boring person), will probably not find Heart of the Swarm all that interesting as, aside from several innovations, is still essentially the same game with different units, cinematic sequences, story, and a handful of other changes. But for the rest of us the swarm hungers. Expand
  21. Mar 12, 2013
    Do not let these low reviews fool you, this game is amazing! It lives up to the expectation and from what I have played the campaign is fresh and new. This is a must buy!
  22. Mar 12, 2013
    Let me be brief..
    Story: excellent dialogues ans cinematics, you get into the character on every mission of the campaing
    Gameplay: exceeds the expectations of the game. Wont get you bored in any moment of the game, the missions are wonderfully designed.
    Multiplayer: i am not very fan of mp gaming, but as far as i played, the new units makes it funnier and makes available more strategic

    Overall espectacular game. Recommended for any type of gamer. It wont dissapoint you
  23. Mar 12, 2013
    Loved this game. Just played through the story, and it was totally unexpected. They sure do a great job hiding the story in the trailers. Gameplay was fantastic as usual, and the replay value im sure will be never ending with arcade modes and regular ladder play. Good job blizzard on this one.
  24. Mar 12, 2013
    Bigots work in Blizzard. I don't know how many times thousands of gamers in Russia were had by Blizzard, but Blizzard did it again. You pay money and get nothing. I don't think, that it's the last time they do it with us, so I give this game zero that's my mark for game, that can't be activated because of greedy publishers.

    Blizzard isn't worrying about Russian gamers. Publishers
    always complain about piracy on PC, but they do everything to make honest PC gamers to go and play cracked version of the game. OMG, you are paying 100$ for CE of the game, that doesn't work, and are reading how pirates are playing in cracked version. Or how people in other countries are playing this game. The only problem for me is that I've decided to buy this awful game with zero service and support that doesn't answer. Expand
  25. Mar 12, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I'll try to be as unbiased as possible, while explaining my opinions, and emotions, of the newest expansion for Blizzard. Warning minor spoilers not that it matters. I want to say I've been a fan since Warcraft of Orcs and Humans, but I've seen a laziness in the developer for the past several years that has degraded the quality of the games. I began to be worried with the announcement of the Starcraft 2 Trilogy. My initial thought was that it was an attempt to grab some extra cash, though I denied such a thought of my beloved blizzard for years. Now after the catastrophe that is Diablo 3,the bulky, and borderline fluff. that was Wings of Liberty, I have come to the conclusion that my original assumption is true Blizzard has become the next bioware they in it for your money. The entire campaign is a vain attempt to kill a man who should have died in the first campaign for the sequel, I.E, the title being wings of liberty sounds like the dominion would fall right? Yet despite the forshadowing the first campaign lends to the player, there is no development from the big xel naga threat other than the fact that kerrigan must fight it. NOTHING contributes to the overarching story of the series, they even try to make it seem worth 40 dollars by adding seven missions where the whole purpose is to test out two different strands of a zerg mutation. These fluff missions show how little blizzard cares for their products anymore as they have lost all pretense of even trying to create something worthwhile an unique. Playing these missions was like revisiting the same dungeon for the tenth time in Dragon age 2, boring easy and repetitive. Finally in the campaign though I did not even notice till the very last mission, which was extremely anticlimatic and could have been any other level in the game, I noticed that the zerg campaign has no troop transport. Overlords are now nothing better than a moving supply depot, especially without the evolution to overseers. I'm sure the multiplayer is fun and highly competitive, it was the redeeming quality to the bulky WOL, but guess what, getting a couple new units and maps for a game i already own is not a expansion. I paid 40 dollars just to be jerked around and I've had it with blizzard trying to make money of their poor deluded fans. If I wanted that particular experience I would have bought a call of duty map pack, FOR TEN DOLLARS! They were my ivory tower, and now they don't give a damn, Expand
  26. Mar 15, 2013
    Blizzard have made Brood War and Frozen Throne, two of the best RTS expansions of all time, both with jaw-dropping campaigns that were memorable for years to come, and also with changes to multiplayer that COMPLETELY changed the way the game was played. Compared to those, HotS is painfully average. Campaign: The story is okayish, mainly because most of the dialogue is between Zerg characters and has an appropriately odd ring to it, but when it switches back to human dialogue it's once again infuriatingly cliche and facepalm-worthy. The missions vary in quality, there are a couple refreshingly good ones but most of them suffer from the same problem as the WoL missions, i.e. they are extremely gimmicky and serve mainly as a means to introduce a new unit that is super useful for that specific mission and not so much later. There are also extremely frequent time constraints in missions, which don't allow you to enjoy them at your own pace. That's a really lazy way to do challenge. Very rarely will you find a mission that just gives you a giant enemy base and lets you just use your units in your own way and check for weaknesses to kill it, it's all scripted and on a strict timer and feels gimmicky. Very disappointing overall. Multiplayer: Nice additions with clans and replays. The new units however are not that great. Only the Viper can be considered a decent addition, and the hydra speed opens up a couple of more viable army comps, but for the other races it's pretty lackluster. Watch any stream where players are interested in actually winning and not just messing around with the new units, and you 'll see most matchups play similarly to WoL, especially TvT is exactly the same except you start with a couple of mines here and there. Overall, for Blizzard RTS standards, HotS is just meh. It barely shakes things up online, and the campaign is mediocre. Not good enough. Expand
  27. Mar 12, 2013
    Give it zero because my CE key isnt working.. Simple.. Amazing..
    Pay 100$ and get nothing good policy.. ''Burn, pity russians, burn in hell", Blizzard said.
  28. Mar 12, 2013
    As usual, don't mind the trolls. The story is cheesy, but the campaign is great, with many diferent kinds of missions. Visuals and sound are excelent for a RTS game, and this time Blizzard enbraced the casual gamer with great tutorials before you jump into multiplayer, wich is the very essence of Starcraft since Broodwar.
    And the game definitely delivers in this aspect, improving Wings of
    Liberty in all possible way. A must by for fans and a great game overall for the newcomers. Expand
  29. Mar 12, 2013
    A beautiful game with a beautiful story. The cinematics are of the highest quality, the plot is developed perfectly. There may not be huge leaps and bounds of improvements over WoL... But then again, it's hard to improve on something that's already of the highest quality.
  30. Mar 12, 2013
    A solid expansion. Improved gameplay both in the singleplayer and multiplayer department. Better UI and thats it. Nothing too radical. Which also means anything you didn't like about the first one game (WoL) will be present in HoTS. I however liked the first one and I loved the general improvements in the expansion. 9/10
  31. Mar 12, 2013
    The best game ever made just got better the campaign is awsome luvin the new missions and overal look of the game then we have multiplayer this game is just simply the best franchise ever made cant reccommend it enough go out and get it right now.
  32. Mar 12, 2013
    First game I bother to write a review for, because it's just that good. Focusing more on the campaign as I've just finished it, the story is darker and better told than WOL or any other game, there are more cinematics at the same or even better quality than were used to from blizz and the gameplay in the missions is more varied and entertaining as ever. A true masterpiece and a must have for any starcraft, rts, or SciFi fan. Expand
  33. Mar 12, 2013
    Campaing is amazing, so is the soundtrack, the cinematics and so on.

    Multiplayer has come a long way and as a zerg I don't have to rely on infestors on every match up. I like it a lot, definetly GOTY candinant. At least on startegy games category.
  34. Mar 12, 2013
    If you liked Wings of Liberty you'll very much enjoy this. Excellent campaign and worthwhile improvements to multi-player space. Wonderful cinematics is just the cherry on top.
  35. Mar 12, 2013
    It's good, very good in fact. If you are on the fence about buying it take some time and look through YouTube, there are hundreds of videos over the past 6 months about HoTS. It is exactly what I expected that I would get, because I have been following it for some time. I have yet to play the single player, but if it is half as good as the Wings of Liberty campaign I wont be disappointed.
  36. Mar 12, 2013
    Best E sport game ever This game is so addictive, the art style is amazing and the campaign is a huge bonus of goodness. Not to mention the cinematics.
  37. Mar 13, 2013
    so stale, but the cinematic are very fantastic. lol that's all. heart of swarm are not better than wings of liberty blizzard so many habitual behavior
  38. Mar 12, 2013
    Chess is the ultimate strategy game, unlike Video games chess will remain untouched, its perfect in its conception.

    Blizzard have done to the RTS genre what Chess did to the board game genre, they have created the ultimate game, how can they better it? they cant so all cry's of stagnation and lack of innovation are futile. You cant innovate perfection, unlike chess RTS's can tell a rich
    and intriguing story and allow you to play scenarios out, this is what makes HotS worth any strategy fans money. The amazingly balanced, simplistic, complex, multiplay is a huge bonus.

    10 out of 10 for blizzard!
  39. Mar 15, 2013
    I have played more and I have changed my mind about the last review. This is really a good addon. It doesn't have a lot of new additions but they can really change the game on multiplayer. I also like the leveling system. The story is not great, the movies are very nice and many. The gameplay is still starcraft 2, nothing special about that, is just cute, I liked WoL better. There are new tilesets, winter, desert, etc, I like that. What is missing is DotA, they where talking about a DotA mode. I am happy I bought it, I recommended to everyone, pro or regular players.

    I wish I could disable the newbish interface (those orange help cards) and the message when you select a enemy unit that you cant move it.
  40. Mar 15, 2013
    A truly disapointing expension pack at a huge price. The new campaing is way too short and quickly over and generally feels uninspired. If you wan't to play custom games there is not much new stuff being added.

    I wouldn't have complained if it was priced somewhere around half of what it is not and even that is fairly high for what you get. With the price they actually charge this is a
    rip-off. Definitely not worth it. Expand
  41. Mar 12, 2013
    VERY very fun, so awesome. Great storyline, great campaign unique gameplay. I have played SC since the beggining and it just keeps getting better. Any popular game like this will get bad reviews, however this one is worth the money.
  42. Mar 12, 2013
    Currently at School I cannot wait to get home and play this GAME! I spent the majority of the night watching the launch event which I thought was epic. gg Grubby
  43. Mar 12, 2013
    Great campaign. Fun missions. I'm not much of a competitive SC2 player myself, so I can't comment too much to that aspect of this expansion. I can say that the one aspect I care about most (the single player campaign) is polished, fun, innovative, and addicting.

    I'll definitely be replaying it multiple times to get all the achievements.
  44. Mar 12, 2013
    A great continuation of the trilogy with pretty solid single player campaign with a nice variety of missions, some new ones like the space combat and others, well known and refined. The story is a bit cliché but with the space cowboy theme I guess thats what you have to expect!

    The big thrill is of course the multiplayer aspect, a tleast for me, which has been upgraded with some really
    nice replay sharing and also new and interesting units to play with.

    Very satisfied!
  45. Mar 16, 2013
    While the gameplay overall is solid, this expansion never does anything to make itself stand out. The plot I actually found less offensively boring than WoL, but you don't get much variety (terran or protoss levels to break things up with), and so far there's no known secret levels, and not much in the way of interesting easter eggs. The campaign also comes in fairly short on the clock, with most people being able to knock it out over the course of a weekend. Also, if goes offline while you're playing, you lose any single player achievements you may have gotten for that map during that play session. Blizzard has the talent and money to produce better quality than this. Expand
  46. Mar 12, 2013
    Quality of Heart of Swarm is on par with Wings of Liberty. But I like it more since it now shows alien race with all kind of weird stuff instead of mere humans. Blizzard did fantastic job with missions, cut scenes and story. The only thing I liked more in WoL is dialogues. The game is now more challenging on highest difficulty. Trust me, you'll reload alot. Cant wait to see the last part of this epic trilogy Expand
  47. Mar 13, 2013
    This game is suicide-bomber inspired. Its all about banelings and widow mines. I dont know what happened to blizzard development team. This is a dumb-downed version of wings of liberty.
  48. Mar 12, 2013
    this game is absolutely fantastic and gorgeous. every negative user review you read on here is obviously written by someone with the brain capacity of a chick pea, especially considering they can barely spell or construct a sentence. A+ Blizzard.
  49. Mar 15, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I'm disappointed on multiple counts. First, understand that I'm a relatively casual gamer. I'm 27. I used to be quite good at warcraft 3, some years ago; but I'm not a no-life teenager anymore. When I buy a game now, it's not in the hope of making it a full-time occupation. So, from this point of view, the problem is that the game is not enjoyable if you do not train yourself intensively: dozens of keyboard shortcuts, ridiculously high APM, boring but time-intensive resource management (why can't the optimal production of workers be automated??) are necessary before you can start thinking about strategy beyond "make an army and rush". I don't want to train for days for a game, I want to start playing and enjoying it almost immediately; in Starcraft II that's not possible, and the campaign doesn't help. That is what I dislike about the multiplayer. But you already know that if you own WoL.

    So I have to rate this extension based on the campaign, gameplay, and story, from the point of view of an older and more casual gamer. Well, if you fit my profile: WoL is okay, but HotS is not worth your time and money. The atmosphere is a bit of a mix between the original Starcraft, Jersey shore (steroid-pumped Raynor, high-heels/smooth-buttocks Kerrigan, nonsensical/trashy love stories, everybody acts irrationally) and dragon ball Z (power levels, Kamehameha fights, martial arts abilities, anthropomorphic Zergs that speak English, but make grammar mistakes). It's clearly written for teens. And the ending is strongly anti-climactic. In addition to this, many of the missions are worthless filler (evolution missions) and a lot of them are not very enjoyable...

    If I can indulge: the Zerg have lost their soul when they lost the Overmind at the end of the original Starcraft. Kerrigan does not compare. Ideally, in HotS, Mengsk would have been thrown away by the people following the events in WoL, Kerrigan would have definitely re-joined the Terrans, a new (different and possibly non-enslaved) Overmind would have spawned, the swarm would have killed and eaten Raynor instead of searching for him in the name of love, and Kerrigan would have emerged as the new human leader... Altogether providing an ideal set-up for the upcoming Protoss campaign. That was my fantasy. It's much too late for any of that now.
  50. Mar 12, 2013
    Beautiful, polished campaign, a better story than the previous part of the trilogy, with more complex characters and action. Good improvements in terms of UI and graphics. The HotS multiplayer looks harder than WoL, because of the new units and strategies.
  51. Mar 14, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I'm rating this as an expansion, not as a game. Starcraft 2 is a great and fun game. Heart of the Swarm added nothing positive. To the contrary, the path that Blizzard opted to follow with the campaign's story is really quite bad. The Zerg were a lot more interesting as mindless killing machines. Choosing to make them muppets was a bad call. Reinfesting Kerrigan pretty much undid the entire plot of Wings of Liberty. And this whole prophesy storyline is so played out. It's obvious to the point of nausea that the end of the trilogy will feature a Protoss+Zerg+Terran vs. Amon battle royale. You did that already, Blizzard. It was called Warcraft 3. And it was lame then too. Blizzard has some truly untalented and uncreative people doing their writing these days. First Diablo and now Starcraft have been ruined with this trite drivel. What a shame. Expand
  52. Mar 12, 2013
    Estou a mais ou menos a 50% da campanha, e posso dizer que Heart of the Swarm um excelente jogo. Melhor que Wingos of Liberty na minha opinião. A trama está melhor elaborada. as fases estão bem divertidas de se jogar. A interface também melhorou bem. O único problema que tive foi que o deu erro no jogo duas vezes, mas graças aos autosaves, não houve frustração. Para quem curtiu Starcraft e Starcraft II: WL, então certamente vai gostar desse aqui também. Expand
  53. Mar 13, 2013
    Overall, the game is superb. It's meant to be experienced online as a balanced and competitive multiplayer RTS, and this is the one thing that SCII: HotS does better than any other game in the genre. Period. The UI is great, and with the new additions of unranked play and the new leveling system, the game is more friendly to newcomers than ever before. Plus, it comes in a nice, polished package that is easy on your hardware even if you are playing on an outdated rig. And perhaps best of all, you won't have to worry about any crippling connection issues with Blizzard's service (a la Diablo III and SimCity), and you can play to your heart's content as soon as you install the game. This is best RTS experience on the market and deserves a 10. However, if you're playing this game only for the single player component, knock the score down to a 8.5. The campaign is extremely entertaining, although it is a bit short, and is also the easiest campaign in a blizzard RTS to date. Some of the mutations available to Kerrigan's swarm as well as some of her own abilities are so powerful that you can basically sleepwalk through many of the missions even on the harder difficulty settings. Despite that, it's still a blast to play. There are several boss-type fights, which are extremely fun, and evolving your swarm in between missions is an enjoyable experience and allows you to customize the swarm to fit your play style. The story is a C+ effort at best typical of Blizzard's efforts as of late. Don't expect the same type of gripping narrative as Brood War, or you will be disappointed. Still, this is a more than worthy expansion to a great game, and deserves all the praise it gets. It's not perfect, and I'd give it a 9.5 if I could, but this is the game that sets the standard for the genre, and HotS definitely raises the bar. Expand
  54. Mar 19, 2013
    As the story is a major aspect for me, I unfortunately have to give the game a bad rating: the story is boring, illogical and without unexpected turns. A total disappointment! Why did it take so long to produce this? Also there are fewer missions than in Wings of Liberty I don't count the evolution mission... They are 5 min each and I don't get their point. Just small videos like in WoL would have been better to show the results of an upgrade. At least you can hear Abathor talk... Multiplayer is OK I haven't played it a lot and so far ti seems it is as good as in WoL. Another reason not to buy this game. Expand
  55. Mar 13, 2013
    a great expansion. Let's first talk about servers and stuff. I played on Launch day, no queue at all, smooth as skill they really learned from their D3 fiasco. Second if you buy the game for its campaign you'll be in for a treat. The Campaign features a wide variety of diverse missions with very fun mission objectives, Kerrigan has her own set of unique upgrades and abilities that you can fully customize like summon a Leviathan or spawn 6 banelings at location (even more fun if you have the splatterling upgrade, world of pain) and it wrapped up the storyline of WoL quite nicely, in all it's one of the best titles i've played Q1 of 2013, definitely worth a buy for its price tag Expand
  56. Mar 13, 2013
    love it realy good campaign no other company can do this epicness. gj blizz. tell me what rts has better story? ofc mass effect 3 or dragon age got better maybe. but this is rts u wont get any better rts. great job bliz and fu to all haters..
  57. Mar 16, 2013
    I don't see how anyone who that has truly played brood and WOL can say that this is a 10, the campaign is very bland and only tries to act like is multilayer, WOL has much more interesting and dynamic campaign compared to this with lots of different mission types and side stories which can't be compared to the kereagan quest things. Multi player attempts to fix some of the problems of 2.0, at least we have our F**** win loss ratio back, HOLY COW THAT ONLY TOOK 40$. And still it seems like a foreign idea for blizzard to let users play community made maps on ladder, or at least on the unranked ladder. As far as balance goes, it seems like they are trying some interesting things but this isn't really all the different from WOL, I can easily see Blizzard slip back into their old pattern of balancing for play only on 6 blizzard made maps. Which is why I stopped playing WOL in the first place.
    Overall I don't think I can honestly recommend this game, the only positive is that it fixed some of the GUI/Ladder problems but still not addressing the major problems of balance. Its like north korea, you like it only because its the only RTS around not because its actually good, and blizzard maintains absolute dominance of the game which is only hurting the community.
  58. Mar 12, 2013
    CAMPAIGN IS AMAZING. Way better than Wings of Liberty. Ignore those negative bigots. The game is a blast. They added some more user friendly features, but the campaign, story, and game play is way more dynamic.
  59. Mar 19, 2013
    I am a huge Starcraft fan and have played the multiplayer part ever since the first Starcraft came out back in 1998. The expectations on the new part in the saga was however not huge from my part. I have played the beta and knew about most of the new units. I had hoped for an adventure equal to WoL and perhaps a bit more advanced when it came to gameplay. However, I was disapointed. The game is even more simplified than in WoL and feels like a 4-5 hour long matinee movie a soap opera in space. Could have been alright as an expansion that cost around 15 bucks but not marketed as a full game.

    The score would have been lower if it wasnt for the great multiplayer but that wasn't really new.
  60. Mar 13, 2013
    Heart of the swarm has a story that i loved and gameplay that i loved even more. I did not think i would like the game that much because zerg is my least favourite faction in the game, but the evolution missions, upgrades and abilities were a lot more fun than the upgrade system in wings of liberty. If you loved wings of liberty, you will love heart of the swarm even more!
  61. Mar 13, 2013
    Starcraft 2 is simply the greatest RTS ever created. It's so incredibly well balanced between the three unique playable races that matches are televised as a e-sport event in South Korea, with top players successfully playing as all three races. With Heart of the Swarm we get more of the same quality with a campaign that gives a human face to the zerg race, pulling you into playing as "the bad guy". I didn't think I'd enjoy a whole campaign based around zerg gameplay, since I had always found their playstyle a little confusing, but the pacing of the game is perfect, and I was able to easily master the race for the first time. Most of the negative reviews on metacritic seem to revolve around the story. I think most of the plot and presentation are incredible, and generally don't understand how a game could get docked 10 full points for a nitpick with a plot point. Even if the game had the worst story in history, the online play is unrivaled in its quality and balance. Expand
  62. Mar 12, 2013
    When checking over the user reviews, please take grammar into account. It's pretty obvious that most of the 0-5 reviews are from people who are unable to communicate a coherent thought.

    I've played about 5 hours of Heart of the Swarm, and so far it is at least as good as Wings of Liberty....likely better. Is it an amazing story? No...but I never found any Starcraft campaigns to have
    an amazing story
    Is it more of the same? Somewhat, but I don't think that's a bad thing. Is more of a great beer a bad thing?
    is it fun? YES! New Zerg units, a zerg storyline, backstory of Sarah K, good continuation of the WoL story arcs, new multiplayer options, new upgrades...what more do people want?!?

    Basically if you liked WoL, you'll probably like this.
  63. Mar 13, 2013
    First game I've reviewed on Metacritic. I created a Metacritic account to review this game. That's how serious I am. I'm a fairly critical person in general. I'll admit that I'm the first one to pounce on the negative aspects of a book or movie or game. But StarCraft II is taboo. You can't do that. You can't be negative about this game and still consider yourself a good person.

    Everything in this game is perfect.
    If you're trying to decide whether or not to buy this game because you're worried the story will be a let down, well, listen. If you've ever watched Firefly or Doctor Who, the same cheesy cliche-esque stuff is in the StarCraft II campaign. The story may be corny, but in that lies the charm.

    I bought this for the multiplayer, having won more than five thousand matches in Wings of Liberty, Heart of the Swarm's predecessor. The campaign (~7 hours in) is fantastic. It's beautiful (graphically), it's got deep characters with questionable motivations and backgrounds, and it's got an interesting story with really fun gameplay. I expected a lot from the campaign, considering Wings of Liberty had a campaign touted as the best in the history of RTS gaming, and you know what? The campaign in Heart of the Swarm TOPPED that. Yeah, it EXCEEDED my expectations, and again: I'm not the most positive of people.

    So when I see 0's and anything less than an 8 on Metacritic, I know that the person who rated the game as such is either a troll, or has no taste in games.

    To sum it up,
    If you're looking for an RTS that's got a casual vibe to the single player with multiple difficulty settings and a fun and interesting, immersive experience, buy this game.
    If you're looking for something competitive to sink hours into fighting battles against others online, buy this game.
    If you're looking for a game to play with your friends online cooperatively in a very wide range of custom games (I'm talking about tower defense maps, tug-of-war maps, hero maps like DotA, etc), buy this game.

    If you want to rail on Blizzard for greedy DRM or whatever other adjectives and nouns you can crunch together haphazardly, go ahead. But nobody cares because as long as Blizzard keeps on shaping these gems, we real gamers will keep on buying them.
  64. Mar 13, 2013
    I wish the campaign was a little less focused on individual hero units and more focused on the overall RTs aspect.

    Aside from that, the game was fun and multiplayer and more interesting.
  65. Mar 18, 2013
    Average expansion. Over hyped. Just what you would expect from BLizzard lately. What you get out of this for the money is just bad value. Few stupid MP units and average campaign. With stupid story.
  66. Mar 14, 2013
    Great new campaign, more of the same fantastic multiplayer with a few UI tweaks and several additional units. Weakest part is probably the new unit additions, as they don't seem to "mix up" the formula as much as they could. However I understand why they went this way, rather than breaking the delicate balance of the game.
  67. Mar 13, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The game as a whole was very good, intuitive changes made to the unit composition in MP, and a wealth of varied missions in the campaign. However the Campaign was uninspired when compared to WoL. It was great, but it pales in comparison to that masterpiece. Kerrigan is back and quickly reverts to her old ways even after all that Jim has done for her. It's interesting to see her as a more human, more sympathetic and caring version of the queen of blades. Another problem, one you can't really blame the developers for is the difficulty getting attached to the supporting characters. They try their best, but trying to develop a relationship with a beast like the zerg and actually care is difficult, my most exciting and emotional times were seeing the crew of the Hyperion, and helping them through their adventures. I cared little of the zerg companions I had gathered.

    And as a final note, I was saddened to see the disconnect between the excellent book;flashpoint, and the game. Not only did they mention nothing of it, the character changes that developed throughout the book especially with Valarian seemed to matter little in the game which was severely disappointing. All in all the game was great and most definitely worth 40$ pick it up, it's one of the few big name franchises that hasn't turned into a giant money grab.
  68. Mar 13, 2013
    2013 Game of the Year! Excellent story-lines and ways of approaching an RTS from a new perspective. I love the Starcraft 2 storyline more than WoW. They tie in everything in a smooth, easy to understand way. A+++
  69. Apr 1, 2013
    Everyone is a hater on Blizzard now. I thought WoL was cheesy, I thought Diablo 3 was commercialized, I think Heart of the Swarm is a great game.

    I'm a long time SC player and it is ridiculous that this game gets anything less than a 7. Production values are through the roof, cut-scenes are amazing, game play is fun and addictive like always. SC is one of my game staples along with the
    MGS series and even though I was slightly disappointed by WoL, this game pumped me up for the third one. The story could be considered a little over-used and trite but overall awesome time. Great job Blizzard! Expand
  70. Mar 15, 2013
    In the HOTS campaign, my very own intelligence was insulted. I managed to finish the whole game with barely a base defence. I hardly even touched an upgrade in the evolution chamber. most missions a few handful of zerglings was enough to get the job done. I didn't even have to think. I didn't even have to plan. I was even on the phone to my friend with one hand and with the other clicking away aimlessly and before I knew it....MISSION SUCCESSFUL. I don't think there was even a mission that wasn't complete in less than 30 minutes. But it just doesn't stop at the poorly thought out difficulty curve (which treats us like babies who've just developed an opposing thumb). The HOTS story carried the same childish, cliché, predictable, and cringe worthy moments that were dished out to us from WOL. No momentum was lost in the declining storyline. No brain cell was spared either for all of mine were lost just witnessing it. Expand
  71. Mar 28, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Got this game before it's release since I got an e-mail reminding me I can download the client before it's released (to save time.) Since it's a Blizzard game, it will never be on sale or cheap, so I figured I'd get it right away. Blizzard tried to make the game appeal to less hardcore RTS gamers and more noob friendly. Indicator on the base showing how many drones/probes/scvs are gathering out of what is the 'maximum' capacity. This kind of takes away from the management of the economy in some ways so that you can use your time to micro instead. Other features like being able to select idle drones also makes it easier to manage. The campaign gameplay is pretty good. It's different from WOL enough to make it standalone but is a bit on the easy side. Even most of the achievements can be received without playing the harder difficulties. The story is also a bit weak and relatively straightforward and it's also a bit short. The new units are a pretty nice add on, but haven't gotten the time to use them all yet. Especially the new ones for protoss/terran, in which they really should have introduced via the story...went to play multiplayer and they just 'appeared', didnt have time to read or get used to them at all. Multiplayer AI has gotten better and now does not have the same weaknesses as before ie) use air superiority, or purely destroy AI with cloaked severely punishes massing one type of unit. Auto adjusting difficulty of AI is also a nice touch.

    The pace of the game seems quicker, and forces the player to expand and hold positions. It's more about choosing when to expand and when to attack, rather than hiding in your base and massing a huge army, which was much of SC1. Mineral patches and gas, seem to run out faster, which leads to quicker games, quicker gameplay. Learning hot-keys become more of requirement, rather than a want. It's just not possible to keep up to any player or AI without using any hot keys at all...

    Overall, not bad. Would buy it if you have cash to spare or if you have some friends to play multiplayer with online.
  72. Mar 17, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I was counting days to this game. Sure why not? Cinematic trailer gave me hopes, all sneak peaks into story and so forth. Bought the game and played trough story. While playing the campaign i nonstop feeling "When this thing will evolve into a story". No zerg feeling, kerrigan hunting for revenge and most missions were fillers. Story did not go in depth about what is happening. Usually in Blizzard games the story itself runs deep and gives feeling you are actually watching a movie. This time? Mission after mission, nothing new and very little progress.

    Now that the rant about story is done. Let´s look into other parts. Graphics, no improvement there. Still eye candy to play for my taste and i like the way they changed good part of the layout´s etc.

    I´m not big into all this 1v1 action. Game is horrible in my opinion when it comes down to 1v1, game might be over if you looked over shoulder and missed 2 seconds before making first SCV, Probe or Drone. Reacting into something wrong or not scouting something out in time. Just not my idea of an strategy game, but still watching streams, tournaments and so forth it´s highly entertaining. New units are mainly boring and lame. Hellbat & Widow mine are very awesome, but rest just total letdown. Was expecting more, even if it meant deleting few old ones. New maps are nice in visual. In my opinion best part about this expansion is leveling system (pointless, but still), worker count and "competive AI" play..

    Only reason i hit 7 for this expansion is arcade games. Game been out for 5 days and only thing keeps me logging from time to time is play some arcade action. Hat´s off to the hard working map makers out there. Sum up of everything: Overall ok expansion, i was hoping more from Blizzard since they used to have high standards from themselves. I would buy this expansion again only for the story, even if it´s lame. I stop this review by saying good old blizzard phrase "Expansion will fix it!". Protoss campaign im booking rest of my hope on you!
  73. Mar 13, 2013
    As if Diablo 3 was bad enough. Blizzard don't care about the past games and insult greatness once again. They threw Lurkers YES LURKERS into their campaign. Widow Mines, Warhounds, now Lurkers. Another lame attempt to incorporate something from Brood War to try and make their game seem cooler. Why aren't they in the multi-player? They would be totally anti-fun right? Probably too hard to balance like Warhounds. They continually fail to produce an exciting RTS when they cannot even produce a good single-player game. Brutal is a joke and feels like WoL on normal. They even have a Diablo-esque battle which sucks and doesn't relate to what this kind of game is. The storyline is once again mediocre but the units are a lot more interesting this time around. All I can say is, don't stray away from your objective and listen to the you already know because you aren't blind. Expand
  74. Mar 12, 2013
    Starcraft2 自由の翼に続いて今度のHeart of the swarmも本当に名作だった。Storyもよかった。特に主人公の立場や考えをPlayerがもっと体感できるようにゲームが作られていていることがよかった。あのせいかStoryにも夢中できた。Just remember awesome fantastic impressive
  75. Mar 14, 2013
    A great expansion set that makes the original Starcraft 2 much polished. The campaign is fun and detailed. The cutscenes are movie like, exceeding WOL and most games in this regard. Playing the HOTS multiplayer for the first time surprised me a lot: the whole gameplay got much smoother, the graphics got sharper. The tweaks and new units shows that Blizzard listened to the community (of course some minor balance changes will still be required). The new physics engine makes battles more spectacular both in multi- and in singleplayer mode. All in all, this game is the Blizzard quality I hoped I could once again experience (Diablo 3 was a disappointment for me). Expand
  76. Mar 19, 2013
    It is a poorly paced game, seems like most games are failing this time around like sim city. It is a total waste of money, this game is not even worth getting second hand
  77. Mar 18, 2013
    This expansion does nothing to improve on the fundamental flaws of Starcraft, it only adds a few gimmicky units. I would not recommend this expansion to anyone it's as much a waste of money as the original game.
  78. Mar 14, 2013
    I'm kinda splitted when it comes to HotS. Gameplay is fine as always. Cinematics are good. But the story carried by those two is rather weak. Even if it has at least two nice little touches, it feels more like a Anime aimed for 16 year old boys and girls instead of a mature story for the fanbase who grew up with Starcraft and Brood War. The scenes itself feel a little disconnected as when someone thought "Oh, it would be cool if Kerrigan would do this. And later that" without really caring about why she would do it. The game was no edges. It's all round and comfy. Also it kinda does the Warcraft 3 limbo. Now since Humans and Zerg are more-or-less at peace, we will have some Protoss fun in the next title and i REALLY strongly guess that we have to team up against the evil space-god-zerg-protoss-hybrid-xel'naga whatsoever antagonists and we will leave the universe in the state of fragile peace like we did in wc3. So Blizzard can craft whatever they want out of it. Expand
  79. Mar 23, 2013
    Rather than actually base Starcraft II upon Starcraft I, which is, a game about Strategry and Military Tactics, they decided to base Heart of the Swarm upon timed console gaming garbage like Legend of Zelda. Most of the missions are more "Race against the clock" to win trash.

    Avoid this garbage like the plage, it's about console style beat the clock and is nothing like the original Starcraft
  80. Mar 20, 2013
    I've been trying to enjoy the campaign, but Kerrigan is simply an illogical, pretentious, #$%hole.  Revenge obsession can certainly make one do evil things, but when she turns around and pretentiously dresses down her zerg followers on morality, I can only facepalm so many times.

    The single player is simply E-sport training, once you've learned a new unit at a frantic pace, it's time to
    move on to the next instead of letting you have a mission to toy around and learn their nuances.

    I honesty like the new zerg play-style, but I’d recommended against getting this until a real sale is on.
  81. Mar 17, 2013
    Excellent strategy. Timely return of best RTS of 2010. Heart of the Swarm makes you forget about other games. And no more words. Everybody must play!!!
  82. Mar 13, 2013
    The expansion to Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty delivers enough high quality content to be thought of as a completely separate and deserving game. Story-wise, the campaign is only an extension of WoL, but it's a great one, with surprisingly good writing. On game play, it is no surprise that every level brings fresh and polished approaches to the real-time strategy genre; this is definitely not a repackaging of WoL. With 20 new levels and a plethora of bonus objectives and challenges, the game justifies itself even before you experience its wonderful replay-ability. Expand
  83. Mar 13, 2013
    Its bloody awesome, builds on WoL and makes the whole shebang better.. well done Bliz! If you like RTS your gonna love this ride. Bliz rarely disappoints and this is no exception.
  84. Mar 29, 2013
    Great Game! Cant wait to see the third part of the trilogy! Its not better than Wings of Liberty, its just a different compaign. I think Blizzard should still work on some PvP components as there are a few balance issues appear (easpecially when you play toss vs terrans) As fot the story its amazing. I hope they will release it next year
  85. Mar 28, 2013
    In addition to its wonderfully thought out multi-player balance, Heart of the Swarm offers new heights in campaign mode. The player will be tasked to adapt and improve on new strategies that will introduce the player in to the exotic and varied game play the campaign offers. This truly amazing fresh game shines not only in the traditional strategical online player vs player matches, but as well as the lengthy work blizzard put in the campaign. Expand
  86. Mar 18, 2013
    The same things I didn't like about StarCraft 2 wings of liberty are back again for Heart of the swarm (which Ill just refer to as HOS) only in greater quantity this time. Don't get me wrong HOS still has that great polish that Blizzard puts into all of their games, a good balance for the races, a fleshed out storyline and the usual quality they put into their products but it is still lacking in several areas with their old trappings from SC2 back again, only much more this time around.

    I really don't like how HOS is constantly holding your hand the entire time. I never felt like I got to really chose my own strategies and I constantly felt like Blizzard was right there holding my hand and telling me what to do. Every mission you are guided along being told which place you need to build on, which unit to use, how to use it, what you need to accomplish and such. Some missions do give you a bit of freedom but for the most part you are directed on what to do. I just wish I had more freedom in more stages of the game because to me that's what a strategy game is, getting to use strategy and come up with ways to win and it just isn't that much fun when the game is always telling me what strategy to use. I never felt like I got to stretch the old brain out and flex it somewhat with the game doing your thinking for you. You can definitely tell this is from Blizzard because hand holding has become their thing even like World of Warcraft is based around quests and dialogue that guide you, tell you exactly where to go and what to do when you get there with even raid encounters telling you what to do and warning you before a boss does some special attack. The entire time I'm playing HOS I just feel like it's one great big training level that never fully removes the training wheels. Age of empires or civilization would hold your hand but it wasn't long before those games would let go and let you go off on your own. HOS feels like an overprotective mother that won't stop looking over your shoulder.

    The storyline which at its core was good and an interesting continuation it feels overly padded that gets a little long in the tooth after awhile. It had some great ideas in it that I enjoyed but there was too much of it constantly being shoved in my face. I don't always need every single detail of everything that's happening no matter how insignificant explained to me. The problem is a lot of the dialogue in the game just feels so needless and doesn't make me feel like I'm learning anything because it just feels pointless a lot of the time. I'm all for extra story and dialogue if it helps you feel more "in the games universe" because characterization is important but when it just seems like filler to pad out the game it means nothing to me.

    I felt too rushed in most missions. It always seemed like there was a timer, or there was always something forcing me to constantly be moving ahead. Either I'm going to be destroyed, some beam is going to kill me unless I slow it down, a giant ship is heading my way, the enemy is going to escape, I have to gather something before the enemy does or something else. Which being rushed goes back to lack of freedom and lack of the ability to use strategy since those missions usually just mean you bulk up on troops and run out as fast as you can. I mean a good timed mission can invoke a sense of urgency and make you sweat a little but when you get 4 or 5 of them in a row, or every other mission is timed it gets old real fast.

    This is a game worth playing but I can't recommend it for more than 20 bucks.
  87. Mar 21, 2013
    Honestly I was bored, the addition of new units and story really didn't keep me interested. I fear this is the new trend for blizzard resting their lack of New gameplay and compelling story on its laurels.
  88. Mar 18, 2013
    Great on the quality, i loved the artistic content and it was really polished. But at the end the game was over in 3 days, less then 20 hours of game play for me, even on hard difficulty. The game felt short for the time it took to develop it, and considering they did not have to rewrite the engine.

    So great game, too short of a story, overly easy even on Hard difficulty. I even got the
    CE that had nothing special in it it was 100 Euro. All in all disappointed by the content quantity in the game as well as in the physical CE box. Feels like they are just milking it. Expand
  89. Mar 16, 2013
    Look at all the paid shills giving 10/10 reviews. None of them even have spelling errors, like they've all been cut and pasted or computer generated based on Blizzard press releases, HOW FAR HAVE U FALLEN BLIZZARD!!!

    The game: Dumbed DOWN, gimmick RIDDEN, braincell KILLING, mind numbing, boring.

    None of the game units make sense, they're all based on the two retards, Dustin Browder
    and David Kim's, mistaken preconception of WHAT's COOOOOOOOOL, that only ends up being an ill conceived exercise in poor design and contrived mechanisms. But it doesn't matter to them as long as it makes the 13yo kids scream into their mics. Expand
  90. Mar 16, 2013
    I am on mission 20 of 27, and am having a blast. The complaints about the story here are inconceivable. I am finding it intriguing and well done, especially for an RTS at heart. The progression of the campaign feels very fluid as it adds choices and new species to play with. Choices that can be changed at any time. Seems there are quite a few bad reviews complaining about things they wish it was, instead of actually reviewing the game as it is. A shame. This is a very, very well done expansion. If you are a gamer reading these reviews for a push, you have already passed the threshold of needing to buy it. You will not be disappointed. Expand
  91. Mar 15, 2013
    I quite thoroughly enjoyed Heart of the Swarm. I find that the campaign is fairly well written and stands its own even compared to some of the RPG typed games that I've played. Like Wings of Liberty, the narrative brings a certain depth to some of the characters we know, such as Jim Raynor and Sarah Kerrigan. The campaign is about 27 missions long, which is fairly lengthy considering the original Starcraft had about 30. The cutscenes are of course beautifully done, and the way the missions are panned out really gives the game an extra flavor, since it's not always about building and conquering. The new additions to multiplayer also seems to be a welcoming sight, with a few unique units that offers up to strategies to your game. If you are a Starcraft fan, don't pass this game up. Expand
  92. Mar 13, 2013
    Excellent story and loved new Sarah.It remainds me Arthas from WoW because I think Blizzard loves to create a good man turning to a bad one and that's why their games have very good quality.They know how to create a good story and continue that.Nice job Blizzard you made it again..
  93. Mar 15, 2013
    After finishing this masterpiece I have to say it offers you much better campaign than SCII: WoL and the new units for multiplayer are nice as well. Balancing is a subject to change anyway so I won't even bother to say that race x is too strong for race y. If you only get this game for singleplayer it will still be worth your coins because the it offers more variety than multi and the new characters are fantastic. Strongly recommend getting this game. Expand
  94. Mar 14, 2013
    Great game. Everything is simply perfect. Campaign, multiplayer, sound. 10/10 Brilliant game!
    A little bit better than Wings of Liberty. I hope Legacy of the Void will be soon.
  95. Mar 15, 2013
    Don't believe the hater crowd, guys. This game is a gem and it is worth every penny.

    I a big fan of the Starcraft universe and I've played Starcraft and Brood War. When Starcraft 2 Wings of Liberty was launched, I had very high hopes about the game. It proved to be great. This time, Blizzard took a great game and made it even better. Heart of the Swarm is wonderfully crafted. A lot of
    attention has been given to the story, the cinematics, the multiplayer and even the graphics ("Extreme"). Sarah Kerrigan is more impressive than she has ever been and it truly shows that Blizzard tried to make her a more complex character. Those of you who've been disappointed a bit by the light tone of Wings of Liberty will be pleasantly surprised by the darker story of HOTS.

    Thank you, Blizzard, for a wonderful game! I can't wait for The Legacy of the Void. En taro Tassadar!
  96. Mar 18, 2013
    Heart of the Swarm cannot be compared to the impact Brood War had on StarCraft I. Times have changes, games have changed and the gamers have changed. However, it is a fully-fledged expansion set that improves all the aspects of the original StarCraft II. The single-player storyline may be a little dull (still being very well crafted), but it's in the and multiplayer aspects that HotS shines. It guarantees a very smooth transition from WoL, opens up lots of possibilities for newcomers and gives many incentives to play the multiplayer battles for hundreds of hours. In the times of hidden DLCs that are embedded in the original game, Blizzard proves once again that it's one of the best developers in the world that treats the gamers with the respect they deserve. Expand
  97. Mar 16, 2013
    A fascinating expansion: Heart of the Swarm takes everything that was good in WoL and makes it even better, while at the same time polishing the downsides of the original.

    First things first, after the cheesy single player campaign in WoL (and after a horrible Diablo 3 storyline), Blizzard redeems itself in this expansion. The HotS campaign might not feature Bioware-perfect dialogue and
    character development, but it gets the job done, it's engaging, emotional, much less cheesy than before and actually has characters with motivations and feelings. They are quite memorable (unlike the one-dimensional testosterone packed, bravado-infused Hyperion shipmates of the original) It's a very straightforward story, but it's well executed and the in-game and CGI cutscenes work well and don't seem as choppy as in WoLl. Moreover, most of the scenes are recorded so you don't need a powerful computer to see the cinematics in all their splendor.

    The UI of the game got a huge facelift. The multiplayer got a slight overhaul with addition of new units and abilities to each race, but it's mostly in the surrounding areas, where the changes really make the greatest impact. The leveling system, while imperfect, makes sure that losing a game is not time wasted, and the unlockable dances/portraits and unit skins are now only tied to this system, making the simple process of playing more rewarding. Overall, it's a perfect expansion. If you didn't like the original, then there's nothing for you in this installment, but that's the point. SC2 is an RTS where change in underlying mechanics is impossible (how would you change chess?) but the polish and error-correction that Blizzard undertook really makes the game feel more cohesive and enjoyable in all aspects.
  98. Mar 16, 2013
    I will admit i am a fan of cheesy dialogue. I grew up on 90's action movies so the campaign doesn't bother me, i enjoyed the story. I would give it a nine overall but i refuse to let people who give zero's get away with that. No game deserves a zero. Now for the review. The story is going in the same direction that wings of liberty was, so if you didn't mind the dialogue or story in Wings of liberty you will like the campaign. The interface for Kerrigan is cool and being able to choose powers for Kerrigan was fun. The cinematics were great and the online is amazing. I felt the missions were more varied and overall a success. For the online you can complain that not enough units were added in the expansion but i feel starcraft has always been about balance and i think blizzard pulled it off well. If you didn't like wings of liberty there really won't be anything here that will catch your eye or satisfy you. Is it game changing or pushes the boundaries no, but i feel its a good game nonetheless. If you like playing rts games or/and are a fan of starcraft i say buy it. The game is worth the $40 but if your on the fence i say wait a bit and then get it when the price drops. Overall a good game which may stumble a little but i give it a 9/10. Expand
  99. Mar 14, 2013
    I really loved the single player campaign. The story is just as good as ever and its really great to see Sarah and Jim working together in (a few missions) but just having them on screen together is amazing. I've been waiting to see this for a decade and it hasn't disappointed. My only complaint is more time with them together would have been good. Also, lots of the upgrade decisions are meaningless since the Zerg tend to just swarm over everything. The upgrades don't matter much or aren't noticeable. But I'm here for the story not upgrades and I loved it! Expand
  100. Mar 15, 2013
    Awesome expansion to an awesome game. The campaign story while still not great has definetly improved a lot from WoL. And the campaign is self was simply amazing! None of the missions were alike and they were all great. I especially like having Kerrigan as a kind of hero, which really added more depth to the already great gameplay. The changes to the multiplayer though not many have made a major impact on the gameplay. It's fun and interesting and with the new units hundreds of new tactics will appear and make sure that each game is different than the last one, which really keeps the game interesting. One of the best games in a while and i'm sure i will play even more SC 2 in the future, now that HotS has arrived. Expand

Generally favorable reviews - based on 68 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 66 out of 68
  2. Negative: 1 out of 68
  1. Jun 10, 2013
    The tutorials and the A.I have been improved, giving newcomers the chance to calmly try new tactics… before playing against experienced players that will go straight to their jugular. [April 2013]
  2. May 9, 2013
    Accomplished, if not exactly groundbreaking. [June 2013, p.80]
  3. May 9, 2013
    Heart of the Swarm is ScarCraft made better. Welcoming to newcomers, but never dumbed-down, the franchise at its best. [June 2013, p.66]