StarCraft 2 fans worldwide have been wondering for over a year about when Blizzard would finally begin rolling out the beta for StarCraft 2's first expansion pack, Heart of the Swarm. Today, Blizzard isfinally ready (opens in new tab)to say that the HotS beta is coming and beta invitations will be going out "very soon."
Unfortunately, they did not specify exactly when that will be, but they have said that they will begin by sending out invites to top players, testers of the 1.5 patch, as well as friends and press.
Heart of the Swarm's multiplayer component is set to introduce a slew of new units that should radically alter the gameplay first introduced by StarCraft 2: Wings of Liberty. We've got a full breakdown of the new units, changes, and abilities here (opens in new tab).
Last month we reported (opens in new tab) on a quote from an analyst who predicted Heart of the Swarm would not release until 2013 under the rationale that Blizzard always conducts a 3-6 month beta test first. He wasn't wrong, it just seems like he didn't think Blizzard would get the beta out so quickly after he made that comment. If it launches soon, there's still a chance it could arrive before the end of the year. If only because right now Q1 of 2013 looks like a murderer's row of AAA hits that even Blizzard might fear.