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Arcade Highlight: Trial of Zeal

Arcade Highlight: Trial of Zeal

This week’s StarCraft II Arcade Highlight is Trial of Zeal, where six players choose one of ten heroes with very unique skills and engage in an action-packed 3v3 brawl. Inspired by the fast pace of World of WarCraft’s arenas, your hero comes with all of their skills right out of the gate -- no leveling or items to worry about. Your objective is simple: be the last team standing by taking out all three enemy heroes. Game creator Zolstice introduces a ‘team health’ mechanic which drains anytime your team takes damage. If a hero falls before the team health reaches zero, they will be revived after a short time, as long as at least one friendly hero is still alive. Coordination and teamwork are key if you want to secure a quick victory.

Want to learn more? Check out our Arcade Highlight video for a taste of Trial of Zeal.

Once you’re ready to play, click here to launch StarCraft II. Have a friend who might want to give it a shot, but doesn’t currently own StarCraft II? Like all of our featured games, Trial of Zeal is available to anyone with the free StarCraft II Starter Edition.

Traysent: How did you get started in game design?

Zolstice: The thought first came to me when I saw how the Warcraft III World Editor allowed users to create various new game modes and introduce new units and abilities. I started out trying to alter campaign maps, but eventually decided to create my own games once I got the gist of things. Back when Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne was released I was constantly trying to create maps people would enjoy.

T: What made you want to make games with the StarCraft II editor?

Z: When I heard news that Starcraft II would feature a more powerful editor, I immediately decided to try it out. It took me awhile to get the hang of the editor but it clearly paid off.

T: What was the inspiration for Trial of Zeal?

Z: The Hero Arena genre during the Warcraft III era was my base inspiration for making Trial of Zeal. I also enjoyed playing World of Warcraft’s arena and eventually wanted to create a deathmatch arena game filled with complex heroes.  Over the past few years I have played many great hero-arena maps out there and Trial of Zeal is my latest take on the genre.

T: How many people worked on this game and what roles did they have?

Z: Most of the triggering, data work and art were done by me. During development, I had the opportunity of having great friends and siblings who would test the game with me.

T: How does the game work? What is in store for a first time player?

Z: Select a hero of your choosing, whether you feel like being a badass Ultralisk or an intellectual High Templar. With each hero, comes a unique set of skills with different special effects. You are then placed in an arena along with your teammates to fight against the enemy team. From there, it’s up to teamwork and your judgment to ensure that you lead your team to victory!

T: What do players who want to conquer the game and be great do to reach that goal?

Z: Patience and skill. It takes a while to learn and get used to a hero’s combos, especially in Trial of Zeal. As with any other hero arena game, unit micro is essential in being a good player.

T: What do you feel makes your game compelling?

Z: Each hero in Trial of Zeal was created with a unique and sometimes radical theme in mind. One hero will have a kit that revolves around damaging enemies from behind, while another spawns illusions that store certain spells for the player. I believe each hero’s combos are the main attraction for my game.

T: Are there any updates coming to Trial of Zeal that the community can look forward to?

Z: It’s been a few weeks since I last updated the game. No worries though, more updates will come soon with visual upgrades, new heroes and other major changes.

T: What advice would you give to someone who was interested in using the SCII editor to make their own game?

Z: Keep calm and mod. A lot of Starcraft II’s editor functionalities are complex and requires some degree of understanding to work with. I recommend new mappers to check out and look at some of the tutorials they have there.

T: How did you get people to notice your game once it was released?

Z: I made a video trailer that I uploaded on Youtube and then linked it to various Starcraft II forums with hopes of making my map known.

T: Do you have any plans for other games or future goals as a game designer?

Z: Yes I do! I have big dreams of getting involved in the video game industry.

T: What’s the best way people can follow you and your work (Twitter, Facebook, Website, etc.)?

Z: I don’t have a website for Trial of Zeal as of now, although I might in the future. For now stay tuned at for the most recent updates.

T: Do you have any favorite games on the StarCraft II Arcade?

Z: I haven’t been on custom maps for a while, but games like Night of the Dead and Pimp my Footman are among my favorites.

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