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Heart of the Swarm takes off where the Wings of Liberty ended. Jim Raynor managed the impossible, and with the help of Mengsk's son, the young prince, and a handful of Dominion forces, he rescued Sarah Kerrigan from the clutches of Zerg influence and helped her regain her humanity. While she now appeared more human than when leading the Swarm, she still retained the ability to control the Zerg, but was stripped of her other powers. She might have even considered letting go of her grudge against Emperor Mengsk and leave it all behind with Jim, but when Dominion forces under Emperor Mengsk's command attacked the facility she was at, Kerrigan and Jim got separated and not soon after she was led to believe that Jim was captured and executed. What once seemed like a peaceful escape turned into raging lust for vengeance. She was determined to regain her foothold among the Zerg and once again take the lead of the Swarm. But in order to achieve that, she would have to thread lightly as she lost her once immense influence over the Swarm. Led by vengeance, Kerrigan is set to become The Queen of Blades once again and finish Emperor Mengsk once and for all.

Unlike in base game, this add-on features hero characters much more often on the missions, so Kerrigan will be present during the most ambitious conflicts between her Swarm and the opposing forces. As such, she can level up and upgrade her skills and abilities between missions. But unlike that of Terrans, upgrades with Zerg Swarm can be changed at any point between missions. Only mutation upgrades are permanent. Missions are much more versatile than in Wings of Liberty, new planets are introduced, new map terrain, and a plethora of new and upgraded units, both Zerg and other. While basic Zerg units can select one of the three existing upgrades changeable at any time during or between missions, evolution mutations are permanent. Before Zerg units can evolve, you will have to play evolution missions which will introduce both strains of evolution for the units, and then select the best suitable one for your campaign.


StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm Windows Evolution missions.
StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm Windows Fighting the primal Zerg.
StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm Windows Checking the help menu.
StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm Windows Defending the chrysalis with new Kerrigan.

Promo Images

StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm Wallpaper
StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm Screenshot
StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm Concept Art
StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm Wallpaper


Alternate Titles

  • "SC2:HotS" -- Common abbreviation

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

What all the games in the genre should strive to become Windows MAT (224340)

Critic Reviews

Giant Bomb Windows Mar 16, 2013 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
Ironhammers Windows Mar 16, 2013 5 out of 5 100
games xtreme Windows Apr 30, 2013 9.5 out of 10 95
Chip Power Play Windows May, 2013 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars 90
PC Games (Germany) Windows Mar 18, 2013 88 out of 100 88
GameStar (Germany) Windows Mar 14, 2013 87 out of 100 87 Windows Mar 15, 2013 85 out of 100 85
Gameplay (Benelux) Windows Mar 29, 2013 84 out of 100 84
Game Revolution Windows Mar 15, 2013 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
GameSpot Windows Mar 12, 2013 8 out of 10 80


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A poster for the game is shown prominently in the third episode of the third season of the Norwegian TV series Lilyhammer. It is shown in the house of a freelancer Roar Lien visits to confront him with a crossword puzzle where he is featured.


  • GameStar/GamePro (Germany)
    • 2013 – Best Strategy Game of the Year (Readers' Vote)

Contributed to by MAT (224340)