Starcraft 2 Terran Heart of the Swarm Change List

Starcraft 2 Strategy Guide --> Heart of the Swarm Guide --> Terran Changes (you are here)

Click Here to Get The Osiris MethodIn Starcraft 2's Heart of the Swarm expansion, the Terran race has seen some major changes in addition to the introduction of two new units. In this guide, you will find a video guide detailing all of these changes as well as the new units in addition to gameplay footage showing you how all these changes work.

Below the video, you will find a specific list of changes to the old Terran units as well as new upgrades that have been added to the game and how these changes will affect the meta game in Starcraft 2.

Terran Heart of the Swarm Changes Video Guide

New Terran HotS Units

There are two new Terran units which have made it to near the end of the beta cycle of Heart of the Swarm, the Hellbat and the Widow Mine. This article will focus on changes to older Terran units. See the individual new units guide pages for specific gameplay videos strategies, and more information:

Changes to Terran Wings of Liberty Units

Many Terran units changed with the release of Heart of the Swarm. Here is the specifics and how they affect strategy:


The Reaper has changed significantly. The Reaper no longer deals bonus damage to buildings or light units. The speed boost upgrade has been removed from the game. Reaper's base movement speed has been increased (up to about 3.8, which is faster than un-upgraded Reapers but slower than a Wings of Liberty Reaper with Nitro Packs). Additionally, Reapers heal outside of combat and now have 60 HP (instead of 50 HP). Finally, Reapers no longer require a Tech Lab on the Barracks.

These changes are both buffs and nerfs. The Reaper becomes much more survivable with its self-healing ability, extra HP, and speed, but its damage has been significantly reduced.

Reapers have become popular as part of opening builds in Starcraft 2. They can be used to gain map control against Zerg players as an alternative to the Hellion. With good micro, you can still kill a few workers in the early game, but good Zergs will minimize their Drone losses.

Reapers work well against Zerglings when the Zerglings are off the creep and do not have Queen support. A Reaper or two can allow the Terran to safely grab their expansion, assuming the Terran's micro is decent.

Reapers are also popular versus Terran and Protoss players. Terran players can use proxy Reapers successfully to win games. These builds can actually be quite effective, particularly on small maps with just two spawn locations. Using a proxy Reaper build on a big map is a bit risky.

Reapers are also popular against Protoss players for scouting purposes. A Reaper only costs 50 minerals and 50 vespene gas. Since they can hop up cliffs, you can hop into the Protoss base, take a look around, and hop out. If you save the Reaper, you can do this once every minute or so until the Protoss finally gets enough units out to take down your Reaper.

Siege Tank

The Siege Tank was outright buffed, as the Siege Mode upgrade is no longer in the game. Siege Tanks now start with the ability to go into Siege Mode. This means you can get tanks much earlier in the game and no longer have to dedicate extra resources towards Siege technology.

This opens up the possibility for more aggressive openings, both with an economic focus (cheaper and faster tanks for defense) or pushing on one base (earlier tanks for offense).


The Thor's 250mm Strike Cannon ability has been removed. However, in its place, a new ability called High Impact Payload has been added. This does not need to be researched. This ability allows the Thor to switch its anti-air attack to a more powerful, single-target attack.

This significantly boosts the Thor's DPS versus armored air units. The old air attack is still superior however for dealing with packs of light air units like Mutalisks.

This upgrade essentially allows players to go full mech without being hard countered by a couple of heavy air units. In Wings of Liberty, a handful of heavy air units like Brood Lords or Void Rays could take out an entire mech army, whereas an increased number of air units will be needed to handle the Thor.

Ship & Vehicle Armor

These upgrades have been merged. Upgrading Ship & Vehicle armor is a single upgrade which boosts the armor of both Starport and Factory units. This is simply a buff.


The Raven now always has access to Seeker Missile and it only costs 75 energy. The Raven's access to this ability (i.e. whether or not it needs to be researched). It has been reworked to become quite a powerful skill given its low energy cost and high damage.


The Medivac has a new ability, Ignite Afterburners, which increases its speed by 70% for 8 seconds. This ability has no energy cost and only a 20 second cooldown. It makes the Medivac move ridiculously faster and lets the player sneak in drops or escape with friendly units in a manner that is almost impossible to stop.

This new speed boost also increases an old problem: when you are running down units with stimmed Marines and Marauders and your Medivacs fall behind. Medivacs can now keep pace with stimmed Marines and Marauders thanks to this Ignite Afterburners ability.

Starcraft 2 Terran Heart of the Swarm Changes - Conclusion

Many old Terran units were changed in Heart of the Swarm. You may have read that the Medivac's healing capacity and the Battlecruiser's damage were buffed significantly, but these buffs were removed in later patches.

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