There have been some pretty intriguing changes in the Starcraft 2: Legacy of the Void (LotV) beta ranging from the recent huge macro mechanics changes along to minor adjustments that continue the long trek ahead to achieve a reasonable balance for release.
One of them that completely skipped me (which is odd considering my main is Protoss) in the latest 2.5.5 patch is the adjustment to the way Warp-In functions.
For the last 70 bajillion years, the Warp-gate has always been a vitriolic point of discussion in the Starcraft community. Back in the early days of Wings of Liberty beta and just after release, 4-gate was the go-to strategy for Protoss players. Regardless of the race you were against, regardless of the map, and regardless of your skill level, 4-gate would rear its head and be a frustrating point to deal with.
A lot of people say it’s “gimmicky” and in many ways it certainly was. As time marched on, players found ways to deal with it and eventually through innovation (not the player) and varied balance adjustments, Protoss had to actually build something above the gateway tech.
So, we now come to present day LotV and we come about this inquisitive change that Blizzard have put forth for players to have a roll of the dice with:
- Warping in units at a Pylon increased to 16 seconds, up from 5.
- Warping in units at a Pylon that is near a Warp Gate or a Nexus will take 2 seconds
- Warp Prism
- Warping in units takes 2 seconds, down from 5
- Warp Gate research time reduced to 140 from 160
How does this change things for a Protoss player – of that I’m still quite unsure, I’ve only played about 30-40 games since the 2.5.5 patch was deployed, so I’m still way off having a proper diagnosis of the change. Happy to admit that there was a strongly-worded phrase uttered the first time I tried to warp-in some Zealots to harass a Zerg – sitting there for sixteen seconds while waiting to get the psi-blade wielding, front-line warriors into battle…
One thing that was a little quizzical to me was the actual details behind the “warping in” changes. How close is “near”? Near a Warp Gate, or the Pylon that was connected to the gate? David Kim did go over it a little in a recent community update post, however (as is frustratingly normal for Blizzard) the nitty-gritty details weren’t properly expressed.
Here’s a quick run-down of what the Warp-In changes mean for you:
It’s definitely not the proximity to the Nexus/Warpgate itself – as this pylon does actually touch the nexus – however it doesn’t touch the Nexus’ “foundation” we’ll call it. So this Zealot warping in took a lazy 16 seconds to arrive.
As you can see the pylon actually needs to be within a certain proximity otherwise you’ve got a long warp on your hands. Pylon A is over 8 squares away, Pylon C is over 9 away, however pylon B is within 3 squares, and was able to utilise a 2 second Warp-In.
As you can see above, the ‘activated’ pylons glow a slightly different colour, so you may need to adjust your vision along with your foresight when it comes to warping in. Despite being close to a Nexus and being so close to the activated pylon, Zealot A had a 16 second Warp-In, whereas Zealot B had a 2 second Warp-In. So as long as the section of power-field that you’re warping into is part of an activated pylon, you’re getting a quick trip for the unit all the way from Shakuras.
Hopefully you’ve gleaned some info for the latest Warp-In change, I’ll be taking a further look at other facets of the LotV beta in the near future.