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Call to Action: January 29 Balance Testing

Call to Action: January 29 Balance Testing

We’ve just published a Balance Test Map to the StarCraft II Custom Games list titled “Deadwing LE (2.1.8 Balance v1.0)”. In this test map, we’ll be testing major changes to the Swarm Host as well as a reduction on the duration of the Point Defense Drone. These changes are more significant than any we’ve tested before and we’ll be relying on community participation to ensure they are tested thoroughly.

Below we’ve outlined the changes, as well as how you can test them out in a way that is both fun and easy! Remember however that none of these changes are final. We intend to explore how each change impacts the game and potentially test more changes after reviewing your feedback. Let’s have a look now at the full list of changes you can check out in this version:

Balance Test Map Changes

Balance Test Map:Deadwing LE (2.1.8 Balance v1.0)”


  • Swarm Host
    • Cost modified from 200 Minerals and 100 Vespene to 100 Minerals and 200 Vespene
    • Supply cost increased from 3 to 4
    • Movement speed increased from 2.25 to 2.95
    • Swarm Hosts now require the Burrow research in order to burrow
    • Swarm Hosts no longer collide with Locusts
  • Spawn Locusts – This ability has been reworked
    • Auto-cast removed, Spawn Locusts must now be manually cast.
    • Spawn Locusts cooldown increased from 25 seconds to 60 seconds
    • Casting Spawn Locusts no longer requires a Swarm Host to be burrowed
  • Locust
    • Weapon speed increased from .8 to .6
    • Locust duration increased from 15 seconds (+10 seconds with Enduring Locusts) to 30 seconds
  • Infestation Pit
    • Enduring Locusts – This upgrade has been removed
    • New upgrade: Flying Locusts - Allows Locusts spawned by Swarm Hosts to fly. Flying Locusts can use Swoop to land and attack
      • Requires Lair
      • Cost is 200 Minerals, 200 Vespene, 160 seconds
      • Allows Locusts spawned by Swarm Hosts to fly. Flying Locusts can use Swoop to land and attack
      • Swoop: Orders the Locust to land at the targeted location, allowing it to attack


  • Raven
    • Point Defense Drone duration decreased from 180 seconds to 20 seconds

Balance Testing Extension Mod

We’ve also updated the Extension Mod for balance testing, so that you can try your hand with these changes on maps other than Deadwing. Those of you who are interested in trying out the Extension Mod can use the following steps to get a game started:

  1. Navigate to Browse Maps on the Custom Games menu,
  2. Select a map and click the Create with Mod button in the lower right corner,
  3. Choose to sort by Blizzard Mods from the dropdown list at the top of the screen.
  4. Select the “Balance Test Mod” Extension from the list and then hit Create Game.

New “Balance Testers” Group

In order to make finding an opponent as easy as possible, we’ve gone ahead and set up a group where you can find players of similar skill to play with in the Balance Test Map! To join this group, simply follow these steps:

  1. Press the “Groups” icon in the bottom right, next to “Menu”
  2. Click “Find” to bring up the list of all featured Groups
  3. Search for "Balance Testers" in the top-right corner

Now that you’ve joined the StarCraft II balance tester community, you’ll find it much easier to find players of similar skills who are also interested in testing out our balance test maps, including this one!

If you're interested in the StarCraft II Balance Team's reasoning behind these potential changes, you can check out David Kim's recent forum post on the topic.

We’d like to remind you that feedback based on playtesting is the most helpful information you can share with us at this time. We kindly ask that you spend some time playing games on the test map before offering your thoughts on the changes listed above.

As always, thank you for your continued feedback and support. We’d like to restate that none of the changes listed above are final. Once you feel you’ve had enough time to test thoroughly, we welcome you to share your feedback!

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