StarCraft II is preparing to celebrate its tenth anniversary, with patch 5.0 hitting the PTR with a wealth of new features. The biggest news here is a new prestige system for co-op mode. Players can now choose to reset the level of a commander to 1 (this doesn’t effect your Mastery or Ascension levels, praise the Xel’Naga) to immediately unlock one of three new prestige talents.
Rather than offer direct buffs, these talents each provide an advantage and a disadvantage, potentially altering a commander’s playstyle in a huge way. For example, one of Zagara’s talents increases her population cap by 50% and provides her with more free units, but at the cost of removing Zagara the hero unit entirely.
Fans have already collected a list of all the new prestige talents as they appear on the PTR. With three talents per commander, this introduces a staggering array of new options to co-op mode. Patch 5.0 is also giving some love to custom campaigns, including giving them their own subsection in the Arcade.
Meanwhile, new 10th Anniversary achievements have been adding for every single campaign mission. Completing all of them unlocks Ghost operative Stone as a new announcer. And though there has been no official announcement, players are reporting a bonus experience event for co-op mode, presumably to celebrate the anniversary.
We’ve previously argued that StarCraft II is quietly Blizzard’s best-managed game, and patch 5.0 seems further proof that it can still impress, even many years after launch.