StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm introducing new multiplayer features
Blizzard will be improving the replay system in StarCraft 2 with the game's upcoming expansion, Heart of the Swarm. Recognizing the importance of the in-game tool as a way to improve your game, Blizzard will be implemented three new major replay features.
The first will be the ability to watch replays with others. By selecting the “Watch with Others” button, you can invite players to a private lobby where it will sync all of the players as if you are watching a live game. Once in the game you can chat with other viewers, each of them able to adjust their individual Observer UI. This is obviously a huge deal in terms of improving your game. By being able to watch a replay of your game with others, you can get feedback from other players, or coaches.
With the ability to now watch replays with others comes the opportunity to even take over the gameplay. That's right, you can now jump into any spot of a replay and resume the game from that point. Simply pick a timestamp, choose which of the original players you're going to take over for, and play the game as you like.
This "Take Command" function, as it's being called, let's you go back to a turning point in the game and play it again. This can let you experiment with different strategies to see how it would play out differently. This feature extends way beyond personal games, allowing you to Take Command of scenarios you've seen the pros in -- provided you have the replay.
Blizzard also has plans to improve upon the game's eSports experience, obviously a huge aspect of StarCraft 2. As Blizzard acknowledges, "Sometimes things go wrong—hardware fails, or network connections drop, or facilities have issues—and that’s not fun for players or viewers."
Heart of the Swarm will add the ability to recover from such events and resume a game from any point using the replay. To recover the game from a spot before the issue, you'll need the original players and a replay from the original game. Simply right click the "Recover Game" option in the Replay screen and it will allow the host to select the time from which to continue the game. To help assist in finding an appropriate timestamp, the game will now monitor for events that "might represent an issue" such as one player ceasing to provide in put.
"We’re incredibly pleased to bring these powerful new replay features to StarCraft 2 in Heart of the Swarm, and Beta testers will be able to start using them in the next major Beta patch, which is coming very soon," Blizzard concluded in their lengthy post.