Starcraft 2 : Heart of The Swarm Mastery Achievement Guide Part 1

by Kelvin Redfield on March 18, 2013

This guide is for those who are interested to complete the achievement, especially the mastery achievement for Starcraft 2 : Heart of The Swarm. If possible, you should complete the entire campaign once in normal difficult, so you can unlocked the master archives feature. This will helps you to complete your achievements, especially Mastery achievements even easier. Save and Load is need for multiple tries. It would be the best if you do it at Hard difficulty instead of Brutal difficulty. Also, I will not go into the details on how many drones you need to makes or should I expand my bases, or how many units I need to have. I am expecting you have basic fundamental of this game by completing the normal difficulty.

1. Lab Rat: Mad Dash
- Destroy 3 factories in the “Lab rat” mission in less than 10 minutes on Hard Difficulty

Well, this is rather straightforward mission, and I don’t think I can offer any useful strategy for this map except keep producing your zerglings and rallying them to your hero’s position. It would be recommended for you to skip the side-objective (save zerglings) and focus on the factories, especially the 2 factories in the end of the map.

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2. Back in The Saddle: Nick of Time
- Complete “Back in the Saddle” with more than 40 seconds on each lockdown on Hard Difficulty

Another easy mission. Each lockdown in this mission is easy, except the one that involving 2 ultralisks. Well, there isn’t much strategy I can tell you except using your Kinetic Blast on every opportunity you have against a high HP enemies, especially ultralisk. And of course, I am not asking you to use Kinetic Blast right off the bat. You need to weaken the Ultralisk HP to 300 with your regular attack, so you can one-shot them with Kinetic Blast. Sure that you can use Kinetic Blast immediately, but you need to remember, you don’t want to waste too many time on killing one Ultralisk or lose too many HP of your hero during the fight.

The good news is that every of the encounter with Ultralisk, there are destroyable obstacle/rock/building to block them. So, use this opportunity to hit the Ultralisk Hp down to 300, and finish them with Kinetic Blast. Also, you can use Jim Raynor as your body shield if you want. Remember that Kinetic Blast can be used against destroyable obstacle/rock/building. Very useful in the last section where you need to reach the designated point under 40 seconds.

There are fews fight that you can skip completely without killing them. So, if you saw a bunch of drop pod , just ignore them and keep moving to the designated point.

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3. Rendezvous: Premature Evacuation
- Destroy all Dominion structures in the “Rendezvous” mission before Naktul’s brood arrives on Hard Difficulty.

Finally, a hard mission. Normally, this mission is a joke, even in Brutal difficulty, but this is different story if you are doing the achievement for this mission. You need to destroy all Terran’s base, including add-on within 15 minutes. The reason why this is hard because you lack of strong zerg units and abilities. You don’t have any unit that can does incredible damage against buildings. I will not recommended you to build mass zerglings in the mission, as there are too many hellbat in Terran bases. Whether you like it or not, you should dump all your money into Queen, Spine Crawler and Upgrades. First of all you need to stabilize your economy as soon as possible, and put a few spine crawlers in front of your base. You definitely don’t want to return to save your base every time you went out to assault the Terran base.

The first thing you need to do is to save your zerg Queen as soon as possible, and it can be done with one Kerrigan. Just Kinetic Blast the bunker, or high HP units such as Firebat, and use Crushing Grip on marines. If your Kerrigan is wounded, just get one of your Zerg Queen to restore her HP.

The Zerg Queen are your primarily forces. You need to use them to kill all the terran units, especially the dangerous one such as Firebat and Hellbat. The reason why you want to use the Queen is because of their durability. Zerglings are too weak, fragile and powerless against splash damage. Once you killed those units in the Terran Bases, command your zerglings to raze buildings. Don’t even dream to command them to fight units. You are going to end up wasting zerglings against Hellbat or Firebats. Leave those Terran units to your Zerg Queen armies. If possible, you should spread your creep to the whole map. More creep, shorter travel distance between your base to Terran Base, and it helps considering that you are racing against time in this mission. Not to mention, you can relocated your spine crawlers that you built in the early game and use them offensively. Basically, this mission is about how well is your unit micromanagements and your ability to use Kerrigan’s abilities in crucial moments. Also, remember to upgrade your armies’s weapon and armor. 1 point makes a different at here.

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4. Harvest of Screams: Psi-Lence is Golden
- Complete all objectives in less than 12 minutes in the “Harvest of Screams” mission on Hard Difficulty.

Kerrigan ability setup: Automated Extractors, Twin Drones, Kinetic Blast, Crushing Grip, Meld
Armies setup: Zergling – Metabolic Boost (Swarmling strain), Baneling – Corrosive Acid (Hunter Strain)

You need to complete this main and the bonus objectives within 12 minutes. It is actually extremely easy to complete it with baneling busts. Basically, you just need to produces at least 70~100 banelings, and blast the Ursadon Matriarchs with 8 banelings and Protoss Psi-Link Spire with 20+ banelings during the flash freeze. It took me 9 mins to complete the entire mission objectives. Just remember, ignore everything and only launches your banelings during flash freeze, or else, it is suicidal move. Just target your banelings on the Psi-Link Sphere and Ursadon Matriarchs.

You need twin drones and automated extractors for faster economy since you need to produce at least 60++ banelings before the 3rd flash freeze occurs.

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5. Shoot the Messenger: My Cool Bay Explosions
-Destroy all 3 Protoss Docking Bays in the “Shooting The Messenger” mission on Hard Difficulty

Kerrigan ability setup: Automated Extractors, Twin Drones, Kinetic Blast, Chain Reaction, Meld.
Armies Setup: Mutalisk: Rapid Regeneration OR Sundering Glave

Pretty easy mission to get the Mastery Achievement even it is hard difficulty. Basically, you just need to destroy the 3 Docking Bays, and you can do it with mass roaches/hydralisks combo or snipe the Docking Bays with your mutalisks. Rapid Regeneration for Mutalisks allow your mutalisks to hit and run, and staying alive more longer, while Sundering Glave mutation upgrade allows your mutalisks to destroy any armored units easily, and the good news is that Docking Bay is armored, so destroying the docking bay can be easy if you go for this upgrade. There isn’t much strategy required in this mission. Just make sure you produce enough hydralisks to hit air units, and use Kinetic Blast on the Shuttle when you have the opportunity.

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6. Enemy Within: Monster Smash
-Kill 15 units with the Giant Ursadon in the “Enemy Within” mission on Hard Difficulty

Army setup: Zergling: Anything you like (Swarmling strain), Baneling:Regenerative Acid (Hunter strain).

This mission is pretty easy if you are willing to abuse the banelings. Thanks to the swarmling strain, your Queen can produces 3 free zerglings in one egg, and you should morphs them into banelings. They are good in killing anything in this mission. The main reason why I picked banelings in this mission because you need them to restore the Giant Ursadon’s HP. Your goal is to use the Giant Ursadon to kill 15 units in the mission, and it will be a piece of cake because every time your banelings explode around the Giant Ursadon, with or without enemies, your Giant Ursadon HP will be restored. You should abuse this since the banelings are completely free and can be reproduces extremely fast. Just save and re-load if everything didn’t go according to your plan. I did it in first try without re-load the mission.

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7. Domination: Shutout
- Destroy Zagara’s base in the “Domination” mission in less than 14 minutes on Hard Difficulty before collecting 100 eggs

Kerrigan ability setup: Automated Extractors, Twin Drones, Kinetic Blast, Chain Reaction, Meld.
Armies Setup: Roach: Hydriodic Bile (Vile Strain), Hydralisk: Grooved Spines

Ignore the objective of collecting the 100 eggs. You will complete this mission once you destroyed Zagara’s base. There is not much strategy to talk for this mission. In early game, just grab your 2nd base as soon as possible right after your main base. Once your 2nd base established, all you need to do is produces a lot of roaches and hydralisk, and starts to attack Zagara’s base right around 8~10 minutes in-game. At that moment, you should have enough forces to decimate everything that Zagara’s base can throw at you. I usually rally my entire forces to Zagara’s base entrance. This will prevent her to collects any eggs. Plus, there is no aggressive in this map except Zagara’s armies. Camping at her front base actually eliminate the needs to defend your base and your expansion.

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8. Fire In The Sky: Going, Going, Gorgon!
- Destroy 4 Gorgon Battlercruisers within 120 seconds in the “Fire in The Sky” mission on Hard Difficulty.

Kerrigan ability setup: Automated Extractors, Twin Drones, Kinetic Blast, Crushing Grip, Meld.
Armies Setup: Roach: Hydriodic Bile (Vile Strain), Hydralisk: Grooved Spines

First of all, don’t misunderstood the meaning of this achievement; “Destroy 4 Gorgon Battlercruisers within 120 seconds”. You are not supposed to destroy 4 Gorgon Battlrcruisers in 2 minutes once the game started. It actually means that you need to destroy 3 other Gorgon Battlecruisers in 2 minutes the moment you killed the first Gorgon Battlcruiser. It may sounds hard, but it isn’t hard. In fact, it is very easy to do so. You don’t even need to spreads your creep all over the map to activate the Scourage Nests with your Queen.

Roach is the best unit that you can mass in this map, especially when you are using Vile Strain and Hydriodic Bile. Hydriodic Bile made your roach extremely efficient against light units; marine, and you can find plenty of marines in this mission, and Vile Strain made all Terran powerful units become weak. I actually competely this mission with roaches and few hydralisks for anti-air purpose. You don’t really need to produce other units because you don’t have much resources to produce them, especially you need to complete this mission as soon as possible.

The key of this mission is you need to secure 4 Scourage Nests and don’t use them before the Gorgon Battlecruiser reached your main base. Basically, the first thing you need to do is to use the first scourage nest that you can found in your base to kill the first Gorgon Battlecruiser, but of course, you don’t need to use it immediately. Wait until the first Gorgon Battlecruiser reached your base. Reason? Well, as long as the first Gorgon Battlecruiser is on the map, the 2nd or 3 Gorgon Battlecruiser will not appear,a dn you will use the time and opportunity to secure other scourage nests. Those scourage nests are guarded by Terran forces, and these forces can be easily wiped out with sufficient amounts of Roaches. Just use Mend to heal your roaches, and use Kinetic Blast on Siege Tank or Thor, and Crushing Grip on infantry.

Screenshot of the First Gorgon entering the Zerg Base.

To activate the scourage nests, especially you don’t have creep nearby, you can use the drone trick to activate the scourage nest. Basically, you command your drone to build a hatchery near the scourage nest, and cancel the hatchery immediately, and follow up with the command on your Queen to spawn Creep Tumor on the creep that created by your hatchery. Do this trick at all 4 scourage nests simultaneous for the best results, which it means that you need 1 drone and queen at every scourage nests.

Screenshot of 4 Scourage Nests that you need to secure.

Continue to Starcraft Heart of The Swarm Mastery Achievements Part 2

Go to Starcraft 2: Heart of The Swarm Mastery Achievements Part 3

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