When Blizzard first explained that StarCraft 2 would be broken into three distinct sections, the division seemed like a good way of giving players something to tide them over until the full adventure was released, rather than waiting for a full game for three times as long. That’s obviously not what happened, since it’s been almost two years since the first game released. Regardless, fans finally have something to look forward to, as Blizzard has announced that StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm will be playable at Gamescom 2012 this August.

The show runs from August 15-19 in Cologne, Germany, meaning that the game must actually be almost finished for the team to be willing to put it in front of some seriously devoted fans. They have yet to announce whether the playalbe portions will be focused on the new singleplayer campaign or multiplayer, but attendees can expect to witness plenty of competitive matches between professional players.

The developers will also be allowing firsthand looks at World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria, as well as the WoW expansion’s opening cinematic, and of course, Diablo 3. Europe may be a bit too far to travel for those unable to make the annual trip to Blizzcon, but the gameplay footage and details sure to be released as a result offer some consolation.

Heart of the Swarm Kerrigan

So far plenty of information on Heart of the Swarm‘s new units for all races has been released, but the best impressions will no doubt arise once the game is turned over to the fans. At that point it might be too late to change much but, knowing Blizzard, there is a very real possibility that this expansion might not even make the 2012 release date predicted by analysts. That’s not a bet against those behind the upcoming expansion, but stranger things have happened than Blizzard potentially deciding the new Sarah Kerrigan needs a bit more work before her big debut.

Heart of the Swarm might not be the biggest game shown at Gamescom in August, but it no doubt ranks among the most anticipated PC titles of this year (or next) regardless of how much the Diablo 3 launch fiasco may have soured some of Blizzard’s fans. With no announced plans for a Real Money Zerg Auction House, the company is likely safe from repeating their mistakes.

StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm is expected to release sometime in 2012.

Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

Source: Blizzard