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86

Generally favorable reviews - based on 68 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 1159 Ratings

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  • Summary: StarCraft II continues the epic saga of the Protoss, Terran, and Zerg. These three distinct and powerful races clash once again in the fast-paced real-time strategy sequel to the legendary original, StarCraft. Legions of veteran, upgraded, and brand-new unit types do battle across theStarCraft II continues the epic saga of the Protoss, Terran, and Zerg. These three distinct and powerful races clash once again in the fast-paced real-time strategy sequel to the legendary original, StarCraft. Legions of veteran, upgraded, and brand-new unit types do battle across the galaxy, as each faction struggles for survival. Featuring a unique single-player campaign that picks up where StarCraft: Brood War left off, StarCraft II presents a cast of new heroes and familiar faces in an edgy sci-fi story filled with adventure and intrigue. In addition, Blizzard again offers unparalleled online play through Battle.net, the company's world-renowned gaming service, with several enhancements and new features to make StarCraft II the ultimate competitive real-time strategy game. Features fast-paced, hard-hitting, tightly balanced competitive real-time strategy gameplay that recaptures and improves on the magic of the original game. New units and gameplay mechanics further distinguish each race. Vibrant new 3D-graphics engine with support for dazzling visual effects and massive unit and army sizes. Full map-making and scripting tools to give players incredible freedom in customizing and personalizing their gameplay experience. [Blizzard] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 66 out of 68
  2. Negative: 1 out of 68
  1. Mar 17, 2013
    100
    For those of us who still deeply love this specific style of real-time strategy and want more of it, this is a must-have add-on.
  2. Mar 22, 2013
    90
    Its accessibility over previous entries may be its biggest strength as for those who’ve always been curious about StarCraft multiplayer but may have felt too intimidated to give it a try will find that learning has never been easier, and is still a hell of a lot of fun, even if you’re not in it to climb ladders and make a name for yourself.
  3. May 9, 2013
    90
    Heart of the Swarm is ScarCraft made better. Welcoming to newcomers, but never dumbed-down, the franchise at its best. [June 2013, p.66]
  4. Mar 18, 2013
    88
    Accompanied by the incomparable multiplayer, Heart of the Swarm is a worthy middle act to tide us over until the protoss warp in for the impending conclusion.
  5. May 9, 2013
    85
    Accomplished, if not exactly groundbreaking. [June 2013, p.80]
  6. Mar 14, 2013
    84
    The campaign is solid, but I can’t help but feel it could have been a bit more robust. The improved multiplayer more than makes up for this fact though.
  7. Mar 14, 2013
    40
    The campaign is poorly written, poorly acted, erratically paced, full of pointless upgrades and meaningless choices, crammed full of overproduced cutscenes that fail to relate to the gameplay, and without a shred of creative insight into how to use a real time strategy game to tell a story, much less how to get me to click "next mission" without heaving a tired sigh. For all their incomparable game design smarts, Blizzard remains one of the worst storytellers in the business, partly for how hard they try and mostly for how spectacularly they fail.

See all 68 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 51 out of 265
  1. Apr 1, 2013
    10
    The campaign features are unqiue, multiplayer has great changes (Especially to mechanics and replay watching) and the graphics are awesome.The campaign features are unqiue, multiplayer has great changes (Especially to mechanics and replay watching) and the graphics are awesome.
    Hands down one of the best expansions I've ever played.
    Expand
  2. Mar 14, 2013
    10
    A great expansion set that makes the original Starcraft 2 much polished. The campaign is fun and detailed. The cutscenes are movie like,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
  3. Mar 12, 2013
    10
    the game is everything they promised. if you loved wings of liberty, you'll love this game as well. the multiplayer is running surprisinglythe 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. Collapse
  4. Oct 4, 2013
    9
    Excellent game, picks up on wings of liberty fluently and brings much improvements in gameplay. Story is criticized for some reason but it'sExcellent game, picks up on wings of liberty fluently and brings much improvements in gameplay. Story is criticized for some reason but it's not any worse than any other Blizzard game, it's perfectly acceptable. Expand
  5. Mar 19, 2013
    7
    Pretty fun experience overall and a more enjoyable storyline than Wings of Liberty. The cut-scenes are spectacular as usual (unlike some ofPretty fun experience overall and a more enjoyable storyline than Wings of Liberty. The cut-scenes are spectacular as usual (unlike some of those crappy ones embedded in WoW these days) and the units, upgrades, etc. all feel very nice. This expansion includes some Evolution missions that serve as tutorials for using your units and that then later give you the choice of selecting a "specialisation" for them as you progress through the SP campaign. Negative bits are here though so I'll list them:
    - Far too easy on Normal (especially when compared to Wings of Liberty)
    - Silly "noob" options enabled by default (i.e. not being able to select your enemy/non-playable units to see their health, constant reminders of "an optimal number of units to mine gas is 3", etc.)...just like Diablo III's elective mode being hidden away.
    - Too linear and short I can accept the linear because I don't expect an RPG and the "too short" bits could have been fixed with a more challenging experience when playing normal (really Normal feels more like Casual with sunglasses). I can't comment on mutli-player because I don't care about it (well I used to enjoy LAN with friends and family but the online lag pauses piss me off now even when playing in the same room).
     
    Conclusion: Enjoyable experience but just not quite worth the price if you're only into the Single Player campaign.
    Expand
  6. Apr 12, 2013
    6
    It's fun to go back to playing more SC2 after it's been close to 3 years since Wings of Liberty came out. Although, I feel like the storyIt's fun to go back to playing more SC2 after it's been close to 3 years since Wings of Liberty came out. Although, I feel like the story hurt the game a lot. Most of this game consists of you destroying what you worked so hard to accomplish in Wings of Liberty. Because of that, I felt as a player that I did not want to do the mission objectives that I was given. When I as a player don't want to do the mission objectives, then how am I really supposed to have that much fun? With that aside, it's still SC2, they didn't do anything to the gameplay to make it worse, it's just the story really hurt the game for me. Expand
  7. Dec 5, 2014
    0
    Starcraft went from a somber military-science fiction RTS about cybernetically enhanced exiles struggling for survival in a hostile sector ofStarcraft went from a somber military-science fiction RTS about cybernetically enhanced exiles struggling for survival in a hostile sector of the universe, to a painfully generic space western with extendi-penis dragonflies grabbing a highly advanced two-story tall colossus. Bask in the glory of real time strategy as two testicular masses of comically isometric units duke it out with lighter fluid filled RC cars, decoy **** inflatable eyeballs, and figure skaters with akimbo popsicles to smack you with!

    By the time Legacy rolls around, RTS will die. Good riddance and RIP in pieces to the RTS genre.
    Expand

See all 265 User Reviews