StarCraft 2 – Heart of the Swarm – Mastery Achievement Guide

StarCraft 2 - Heart of the Swarm - Mastery Achievement Guide

Ver. 1.00        

Introduction - What You can Expect from This Guide:

Welcome to my strategy guide specifically written for obtaining Mastery 
Achievements in the Heart of the Swarm expansion pack single-player 
campaign. I assume the readers have already played the missions at 
least once, so I will not try to be spoiler-free in this guide. 

Being a Casual-Level (noobish) player myself, I used the experiences
I gained from my gameplays and applied to my strategies the best I could 
in a way that anyone, regardless the level of expertise in this game, 
can get their coveted and often difficult Mastery Achievements with
minimal setbacks under Hard Difficulty.

I intend to make this guide primarily a video guide, because I'm a
big believer of: A Picture Worth a Thousand Words. Therefore, I am
keeping the text part of this guide as short as I can. 
Each Achievement in This Guide Will be Supplied with a Video Link (if I
have one actually posted) from My Youtube Channel. If you still having
trouble following a particular strategy in this guide, I encourage you
watch the video I supplied first, before considering to ask questions.

If you want more help or reporting possible bugs and errors, I recommend
leaving your question(s) on a correspondent Youtube video page so there
can be more people to help you out. If you don't have a Youtube account,
you may leave your inquiries in my GameFAQs inbox and I'll do the best I
can to answer. For now, I check my inboxes weekly due to low traffic,
so I apologize in advance if I can't answer your question within a day.   

I Plan to Keep the Raw Videos for a Year, So After 1 Year From
Videos' Post Date(s), its existence is NOT GUARANTEED. If Anything 
Happens, I'll Post on the "Version History" Section on This Guide. 


Version History:

May / 12 / 2013  (Happy Brood Mother's Day!)  :  Ver. 1.00 Posted


                            TABLE of CONTENTS

      (Use Ctrl + F and Enter the Code in Bracket for Quick Search)

The Grand Video Playlist Link with a Few More Strategies not Covered in
This Guide is Here :

1.  Umoja missions     {UMJ}

	Mad Dash     {MDH}
	Nick of Time     {NTM}
	Premature Evacuation     {PVC}

2.  Kaldir missions     {KDR}

	Psi-lence is Golden     {PGN}
	My Cool Bay Explosions     {MBX}
	Monster Smash     {MSH}

3.  Char missions     {CHR}

	Shutout     {SHT}
	Going, Going, Gorgon!     {GGN}
	Home Wrecker     {HMW}

4.  Zerus missions     {ZRS}

	Whack-A-Brakk     {WCB}
	Short Life Expectancy     {SLX}
	Whose Queen Reigns Supreme?     {WQU}

5.  Space missions     {SPC}

	Ludicrous Speed!     {LDP}
	Fast Break     {FBK}
6.  Skygeirr missions     {SKG}

	Once, Twice, Three Times Malady     {OTL}
	Dominion Domination     {DDM}
	No-Toss     {NTO}

7.  Final missions     {FNL}

	Crash the Party     {CPY}
	Speed Bump     {PBP}

Credits & Legal Claim     {LECM}


*** Umoja missions     {UMJ} ***

1. Mad Dash     {MDH} : 

Destroy 3 Factories in the "Lab Rat" mission in less than 10 minutes on 
Hard difficulty.

  Strategy > 

I did not record a video for this one because the enemies are easy to
defeat that you probably don't need help to get this achievement. Don't
try this in Brutal Difficulty though, since enemies are a lot tougher 
and making it impossible for you to destroy all factories in time.

Here are the Key Points to complete this challenge :

- Memorize the tutorial beforehand, so you can complete the steps before 
they even speak about it, knowing the use of hotkeys will be even better.
- Have 10 to 15 drones to do the mining and get 50 or more 
supply/control, so you won't worry about shortages in money or supply.
- Rescue the first bonus objective zergling group but ignore the other 2, 
because you don't have time for them.
- After you destroy the first factory, auto-attack your way straight
to where the Eradicator is, where the rest of the factories are, to 
engage least amount of sentry bots possible.
- Never stop producing zerglings and continuously sending them to the
- Once you made it to the Eradicator, do not destroy it (because
killing him will end the mission). Eliminate every single sentry bots 
that surrounds the Eradicator and the factories, then focus-fire on
the factories itself, destroy any sentry bot that pops out of a factory
to keep your lings alive, and ignore the reactors as it does nothing
when no factory attach to it.

2. Nick of Time     {NTM} : 

Complete "Back in the Saddle" with more than 40 seconds on each 
lockdown on hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

Here are the tips for getting through the 2 areas I personally have 
troubles with :

- When you see an ultralisk for the first time in the mission, you
should crushing grip the ultralisk, kinetic blast the debris, and then
ignore and run past him. Continue to run past the next Dominion group
you sees, but get the health pack as you're likely near death, and you
magically skipped 2 skirmishes by this point.
- At the final part when you almost reach the Tram, choose the Zerg
option and wait for the Dominions to be wiped out in the first room
just to be safe (not much waiting at all). Kinetic blast any roaches 
that's in your way, crushing grip the last group of Dominions before 
the Tram and make a run for it.

3.  Premature Evacuation     {PVC} : 

Destroy all Dominion structures in the "Rendezvous" mission before 
Naktul's brood arrives on Hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

Your bare minimum requirements are 2 hatcheries and Level 1 Carapace
upgrade. You have about 6 minutes to set up your base and grow army,
which is a plenty of time. Use this time to send Kerrigan solo to destroy
the bunker and rescue the queen at the right side of the map, and help
out against any incoming wave. Pump out as many Swarm Queens as you can 
because they're your main force in this challenge. 

By the time the Hellions are here, it is the time you have to move out.
Before you go, drop down one more spore crawler beside the one 
already there, and have at least four spine crawlers guarding your east.
I opted to clear the map in clockwise order, as it is the easiest route
for myself AND preventing them producing any Thors (yes they are in this
mission). For clearing the west and the north base, there wasn't much 
complications as long as you have adequate amount of queens. Rescue any
trapped allies as soon as possible when you're closeby, and constantly 
reinforing your attack troop but leave some queens at your base to 
defend. You'll be fine as long as you keep your troop together and avoid
being spread out.

The northeast base is, in my opinion, the most difficult base to break in.
My suggestion is to use Kerrigan to lure out as many defending units as
you can and kill them. Assuming the bunkers are their only defence by 
this point, destroy those bunkers ASAP and then break past the chokepoint.
This base is yours to take once you made it in. 

*** Kaldir missions     {KDR} ***

(I suggest you to finish planet Char first before attempting the first 2
Kaldir Masteries, because it's very difficult to do them with initial

1. Psi-lence is Golden     {PGN} : 

Complete all objectives in less than 12 minutes in the "Harvest of 
Screams" mission on Hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

Have Zerglings with Raptor Strain and Metabolic Boost ready before the 

Time is short, if you finish the first part under 2 minutes, you'll have 
3 flash freezes to work with (including the first one). During the first 
flash freeze and before the 2nd enemy attack, push north-eastward 
and eliminate every unit you see including what's in the base. After 
that's done, destroy every pylons in this base but leave gateways alone 
since they will not rebuild pylons back. You can leave this Psi-Link for 
later spare time if you can't destroy it in time.

The rest is very straightforward: Defend your base during unfrozen time
(if you haven't finish off the northeast base and the Matriarch, this is 
the time to do so). During a flash freeze period, rush straight to a 
Psi-Link with every zerglings you have and then focus-fire on the last 
Matriarch to fully utilize this time period. The last flash freeze should 
leave you one last Psi-Link for an easy rush-in.

2. My Cool Bay Explosions     {MBX} :

Destroy all 3 Protoss Docking Bays in the "Shoot the Messenger" mission 
on Hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

The Hunter Banelings works well in this mission, but in my opinion, the
Aberrations and Swarm Queens combination works best as long as you upgrade
carapace to level 2. Create the Aberrations and Queens team to destroy 
enemy bases, and a team made up of Kerrigan and hydralisks to focus on the
shuttles and you'll be good for the challenge. Remember, the more the 
docking bays are destroyed, the less surprises the enemy can throw at you.
Destroy the docking bays as early as possible to reap the benefits. 

3. Monster Smash     {MSH} : 

Kill 15 units with the Giant Ursadon in the mission "Enemy Within" 
on hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

The first Ursadon's kills actually count toward the 15 units in case you
didn't notice. When you see the second Ursadon, save him as fast as you 
can and heal him up by staying close to the queen. Then produce tons of
zerglings as decoy, make them hold position in any area with lots of
enemies (lings still can attack units that are right next to them which
is perfect). The Ursadon moves in while those Protosses are busy with the
decoys, stun and kill the guys and you'll have the achievement.

*** Char missions     {KDR} ***

(I suggest you to finish planet Kaldir first before attempting the 
first 2 Char Masteries, because it's very difficult to do them with 
initial units)

1. Shutout     {SHT} : 

Destroy Zagara's base in the "Domination" mission in less than 14 minutes 
on hard difficulty before collecting 100 eggs.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

Every structure in Zagara's base needs to go in order to get the

Produce Swarm Queens and whatever advanced Roaches you have, then have
them plug up the chokepoint just below Zagara's base, as Zagara always
come through here. Once you have large enough army, walk into Zagara's
base, destroy every hatcheries/hives and drones first, and dominate.
It is that simple when you have either one of advanced Roach in your

2. Going, Going, Gorgon!     {GGN} : 

Destroy 4 Gorgon Battlecruisers within 120 seconds (2 minutes) in the 
"Fire in the Sky" mission on Hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

Notice there's a green circle surrounds a Scourge Nest when you're about
to spread a Creep Tumor? Your main task is to save 4 Scourge Nests by
place a tumor far enough from a green circle to avoid activation.

Stall a Gorgon for as long as you can and only activate a Scourge when
the Gorgon is about to hit your base. Just like the mission before, use 
a team of any advanced roaches and swarm queens to clear your way while 
you spread creeps. If you feel Creep Tumors are too slow to spread, you 
can build a Hatchery next to a Scourge, it won't activate without 
a tumor.

Once you have 4 unused Scourge Nests on creep, place a tumor on all 
four of them, zip out a bag of popcorns and enjoy the fireworks. ;)

3. Home Wrecker     {HMW} : 

Destroy the Planetary Fortress in the "Old Soldiers" mission before the 
nuclear strike on Hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

I don't know if Kerrigan's "Spawn Banelings" ability is a requirement in
this strategy or not, but it was indeed very helpful for my playthrough.

Since the first base by the gate can be easily destroyed by zerglings, so
I keep all banelings away from the battle for now. Once the first base is
wiped out, you may use Select All and Attack for rest of the challenge.

Work your way northward because it is the shortest route to the Planetary 
Fortress, and auto-attacks are fine with no need to micro manage your
troops. However when you're at the Northwest Base, you'll have to be 
selective on the buildings to destroy from this point and on. In here, 
only destroy the barrack and the factory on the right edge of this base 
and then move on. This is to prevent them producing any more potential
Marauders and Thors that slows down and hits hard on your reinforcements.

Once the above step is complete, regroup as much units as you can and hit
the ramp to the right. This next base is where the Planetary Fortress are,
destroy every bunkers and its enemies inside that you can see here and
search inward for the fortress. When you find the Planetary Fortress, 
which is at the center of this platform, throw everything you have at it
including Kerrigan and forget about anything else.

*** Zerus missions     {ZRS} ***

1. Whack-A-Brakk     {WCB} : 

Don't let Brakk (any Brakk's brood member) destroy any Biomass in the 
"Waking the Ancient" mission on hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

Mutalisks emerge as the most effective unit in this mission, as the
opposition love to attack a spot that is hard to reach with ground units.
But do not forget to beef up your base's defence while producing Mutas, 
because Brakk sends even larger group towards your base than at a Biomass.
You have about 7 minutes before Brakk make his first move on hard 

2. Short Life Expectancy     {SLX} : 

Kill the Tyrannozor in under 1 Minute after it appears in 
"The Crucible" mission on Hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

To kill the Tyrannozor, all you need are zerglings with metabolic boost
and banelings with corrosive acid, advanced units and mutalisks are not
required. But I do recommend you memorize where the Tyrannozor would show
up before attempting this.

While defending your base, take some spare time to produce zerglings, 30
of them should be enough (I Killed it with 20). Then dash them all down 
to the Tyrannozor spot (or you can break it up into waves like what I did
in the video), Burrow down to shake off anything that wants to attack you. 

Once the lings make it to the Tyrannozor spot safely, morph them into
banelings and burrow back down. After that simply waiting for the 
Tyrannozor to show up, unburrow your banelings and zero in on the 
dinosaur, it will be killed within 5 seconds.

3. Whose Queen Reigns Supreme?     {WQU} : 

Complete the "Supreme" mission in less than 12 minutes on Hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

This is my most hated Mastery to attempt, because I don't feel this
mission designed to fit Starcraft's system. My strategy involves minimal
micro management to allow any casual player to have a chance at this.

During any non boss fight moments, burrow every units except Kerrigan 
to keep them alive, we'll need as many help as possible to keep the time
short. After that, run Kerrigan to a boss fight place ASAP and ignore
everything else, use Psionic Shift to skip over any barricade of enemies.

Sorry to say I struggled against the first boss Yagdra to cut the time
down (still struggles today). The general idea is keep your pack close to
Kerrigan, so she can keep them alive with the Mend ability. And try to
finish a group eggs in 2 Kerrigan moves: Leap at a large egg and Psionic
Shift over small eggs.

The strategy for the second boss Kraith is very simple. Keep your helpers
tight so Kerrigan can heal them all, have them all attack Kraith and 
ignore everything else. Let Kerrigan do all the movings, when enemy 
zerglings drop in, clear them out with Psionic Shifts.

Chances are you will fight alone with Kerrigan during the third boss fight
against Slivan, because it'll be difficult to keep helpers alive unless
you're skilled at micro management. This fight is all about taking 
shots at Slivan, Mend when health is low, and Psionic Shift through Slivan
to avoid exploding banelings.

And surprise, surprise. We have one final battle against Zurvan himself,
who is not as difficult as the earlier bosses. You can totally copy the
Kraith strategy for this one, as the Mends can neutralize tentacles' 
damages. You can kill enemy minions with Kerrigan if you want to, but I
chose not to in the video. When Zurvan does a electricity attack, you can 
easily avoid with a Psionic Shift, just make sure the shifts connect 
Zurvan and stay away from those sparks, as it does continuous damage
against you.  

*** Space missions     {SPC} ***

1. Ludicrous Speed!     {LDP} : 

Complete the "With Friends Like These..." mission in less than 11 minutes 
on Hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

It's hard to put it in words, you'll have to watch the video if you need
further help. You need to use every single ability you have like non-stop,
including the Jumps which not only speeds up the Hyperion but also cancels
enemy Yamato Cannon. Ignore the pirates since it take you too much time to
defeat them, and max out Hyperion's upgrade level because even a few 
attack and armor increase makes a world of difference.

2. Fast Break     {FBK} : 

Complete the "Conviction" mission in less than 10 minutes on Hard 

  Video >

  Strategy > 

This mission is very straightforward even though the time's tight. Make 
sure Kerrigan equips Kinetic Blast and Spawn Banelings and she'll be 
almost unstoppable solo. I strongly recommend you to play this mission 
at least once to memorize the map, so you'll know what to do and which 
way to go while ignoring the bonus objectives.

*** Skygeirr missions     {SKG} ***

(Your play experience may differ here because I finished Space missions
before Skygeirr to level up Kerrigan a few)

1. Once, Twice, Three Times Malady     {OTL} : 

Complete the "Infested" mission before the Dominion gas the platform a 
3rd time on Hard Difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

In case you didn't realize, the very first gas period counts as one of the
three. In other words, you only has two gas periods to spare. I equipped 
Kerrigan with Kinetic Blast, Chain Reaction, Mend, and Infest Broodlings 
so she can solo any base that's not heavily guarded. Have at least 4 
surviving infested garrisons to have enough number to plow through enemy 
defence (remember you can re-infest a garrison if it's destroyed).

For this playthrough I went with the Hunter Banelings with Regenerative 
Acid strategy. Build enough defence that can defend surviving infested 
garrisons ASAP, have Kerrigan clear way for the infested in the meanwhile,
and infest as much garrisons as you can. Once the essential defence is 
established, start pumping out banelings like no tomorrow, we need them 
ready 1 minute before the 3rd gas attack (I had about 80 of them). 

Before moving in the banelings, clear the entrance area of enemy's main
base (the zone below the ramp where battlecruisers sit). After that's 
done, you need to have banelings hop onto the gate's platform from its 
right ledge and avoid the area above the main ramp, that's where marauders
stations and designed to slow every baneling down and prevent it from ever
touching the gate. Order banelings to jump all over the gate once they 
make it on the platform.  

2. Dominion Domination     {DDM} : 

Kill 3 Hybrid Dominators with Terran units in the "Hand of Darkness" 
mission on Hard Difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

Infested SCVs will not build buildings in Starcraft 2, so forget about 
them. Set up enough defence to defend your base and train one or two
Infestors. Use Infestors to steal at least 1 Thor: there's one at the
bottom right base, another one by the bottom Brutalisk, and they send out
tons more occasionally to attack your base. Have Kerrigan's Drop Pods
ability helps greatly in this mission, because 1 drop pods sized army is
enough to mask your Infestors' way to the bottom 2 Thors. 

Once you have your Thor(s), clear out everything around a hybrid, rinse 
and repeat the following:
Attack a hybrid only with Kerrigan and Thor(s) at distance, when the 
hybrid and its hallucinations are down to red health, have Kerrigan play 
as decoy by stop attacking and constantly running around the hybrid, allow 
the Thor(s) to deal the last blow. I recommend you to start doing this no
later than the 4th Hybrid, because the last 2 hybrid pops up at the same
time, giving you a difficult time to stay alive.

3. No-Toss     {NTO} : 

Destroy all Protoss structures in the "Phantoms of the Void" mission 
on Hard Difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

Unfortunately the countdown timer's replaced with the power bar in this 
mission, the halfway point of the bar is pretty much the max time you can
get for each period, and you have like total of 30 minutes assuming you
finishes every temple in time. You'll have an easier time anticipating
enemy invasions in this mission because they won't attack unless Narud
tells them to.

For this mission, I'm going with the Mutalisks with Rapid Regeneration 
strategy, since it keep your management simple: you attack and defend
everything with mutalisks! You'll want to have Automated Extractors to
speed up gas harvest, and secure the right expansion site next to your
base at beginning of the countdown.

Those 3 Xel Naga crystals are not part of the "protoss structures", so you
can ignore them since they has quite a lot of hit points. After your 
economy's set, you train only mutalisks for the rest of the mission. Clear
one of the enemy main base so they can't attack both flank of your base,
I suggests take out the right one first so your expansion site is safe 
from attacks.

Other than the 2 main bases, structures in and around the temples, there's
some more structures with the left and top Xel Naga crystal that should
not forget to destroy for the achievement.

*** Final missions     {FNL} ***

1. Crash the Party     {CPY} : 

Destroy all Dominion structures in the "Planetfall" mission before the 
5th Bile Launcher lands on Hard difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

Here's my plan for this challenge: Kerrigan and Drop Pods take the left
half of the map and Aberrations Queens combo take care of the right half,
leaving the top-right base for last. Equip Kerrigan with the Golden Solo
Combo of Kinetic Blast, Chain Reaction, Mend, and Infest Broodlings as

Like before, the bonus objective structures are not counting towards this
achievement, so you may ignore the gates to save time. Begin Solo-ing 
Kerrigan her way to the left base when mission starts, since enemies only 
come from left side until a bile launcher lands at the right side, she can 
stop the invaders while destroying a base. Get your base economy and the 
attacking squad going before a bile launcher lands to the right, expand as
soon as Kerrigan finish off a base.

Your Aberrations and Queens team can begin attacking bases after your 2nd
bile launcher's successfully defended. Leave the bottom-right base before
you have level 2 carapace because it is well-guarded, attack a weaker base
first such as the right Augustgrad Gate base. There's a turret each hiding
on top of a ledge at the bottom-right base and the right Augustgrad Gate 
base, send some raptor zerglings or mutalisks to dispose them before you
forgets it.

The top-most base is the most guarded in the map and home to Kerrigan's 
greatest nemesis : a battlecruiser. You should employ a Bait and Dissolve 
approach with this base by baiting out and kills as many threats around 
the battlecruiser as you can, before you take him down for good. When the
squad of Spartan Company goliaths is incoming, you better have a Drop Pod
or a large army ready for them, or they'll murder you as easy as slicing 
a tofu.

With one last base standing, send everything you have at it and producing
only zerglings at your base(s) for fast reinforcements. Hunt every 
remaining buildings down until the achievement pops up.

2. Speed Bump     {PBP} : 

Destroy the Odin (a huge Thor) in "The Reckoning" mission 
before Mengsk sends it at Raynor on Hard Difficulty.

  Video >

  Strategy > 

The mission's difficult but the concept of beating this achievement is
surprisingly simple, and you have 20 minutes to get it done.

All you have to concentrate are defending your base, produce and upgrade
Mutalisks. Equip mutalisks with Sundering Glave to kill the Odin quickly.
Your main base's resources will run out during the mission, so taking the 
right expansion site is necessary but you don't have to do it right away. 
You better equip drop pods with Kerrigan, because the mercenary units are 
so overpowering even one drop pods sized army can only clear half a base, 
so it's preferable to sacrifice them over your regular army to save money.

You can completely ignore defending your base's left flank, as Raynor's
fully capable of repelling most waves, except for those 3 times he's
asking for your help, with the 3rd wave being the Odin, who you should
destroy before he even start moving.

The first major wave at Raynor's base consists Hel's Angels (Vikings) and
Dusk Wings (Banshees). The trick here is to wait until all angels goes 
into ground mode, so you move your mutalisks in to take as many free shots
before they rise back up. Eliminate the angels first, then the wings since
banshees can't attack air. The 2nd major wave has numerous "Pride of 
Augustgrad" (a.k.a Jackson's Revenge battlecruisers) and Siege Breakers
(Tanks). Zero in and destroy the battlecruisers one by one to lessen the
threats to your mutalisks, and then sweep the tanks before you go.

The battlecruiser wave is your cue to meet the Odin. After you finish off
the wave, take 40 plus mutalisks, pack them tight, and sneak them along
the edges of the left half of the map, all the way to the palace door
(There are bases built along the right edges of the map, that's why I
prefer going left). You have to kill every vikings you sees because they
has splash damage and they follows you around. Once you made it to the
palace door, the Odin's right below it, take everything you have and 
destroy it.


**********   Credits & Legal Claim     {LECM}   **********

All the Video Provided in This Guide are My Own Playthroughs.

You May Download and/or Share Contents from This Guide as Long as You're
Giving Me Proper Credit When it's Due, and DO NOT Alter Any of Mine 
Contents Without My Consent. Counterfeit and Personation of Myself or 
Ownership of My Guide's Contents are FORBIDDEN AT ALL TIMES, Not Even 
as a Joke.

I Don't Need Any Donations for This Guide, But if You're Willing to 
Subscribe to My Youtube Channel and "Like" the Videos if They Works, 
it Would be a Great Help!

Copyright 2013

SLic_K                (watch the capitalization and underscore when
                       crediting me)


                 Thanks for Watching and Your Support!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *