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Dark Skies is the eighth mission of the Nova Covert Ops campaign, and the second mission of the third and final mission pack.

HistoryEdit

The Emperor's JusticeEdit

"The Dominion has always had a strong leader. Stepping into my father's role was challenging, and I often relied on others to support me, as General Davis did, when the Defenders of Man began spreading disinformation about my response to the Zerg attacks"

Emperor Valerian Mengsk gave his speech in front of a large crowd on Vardona, condemning the Defenders of Man for plotting against the Terran Dominion, and stating that General Carolina Davis misinformed the population on the Dominion's response to the feral zerg attacks. He also stated that they had evidence the Defenders of Man were behind the attacks, and had a group of marines bring Davis before the crowd in handcuffs. Valerian stated that a trial would be forthcoming.

However, as this happened the Tal'darim Death Fleet arrived, and began attacking the city and its inhabitants. Highlord Alarak projected his image on the city's screens, stating that he had come to annihilate the Defenders of Man. He then psionically contacted Nova Terra, saying their bargain had been completed, and the Defenders would be destroyed. Nova then began to mobilize Dominion defense forces to aid in the city's defense.[1]

MissionEdit

"Nova... Why are you helping these vermin?"
"There are innocent people here. You already know that. You just don't care."

- Highlord Alarak and Agent Nova Terra(src)

Nova's forces began to mount a defense against the Death Fleet, with the aid of forces under Admiral Matt Horner. The lower ranked Defenders of Man forces also came to the aid of the Dominion, stating they were unaware of the agenda of Davis. Admiral Horner stated that the Dominion Fleet was arriving to reinforce their ranks, but it would take time for them to arrive. Nova reinforced the Dominion and Defender's positions and began to whether the Tal'darim onslaught.

Reigel noted that if the Defenders of Man line fell, the city's science facility would also fall, and they were on the verge of a breakthrough. Soon the Dominion Fleet arrived, and Gorgon-class battlecruisers began to reinforce the Dominion position. At several points in the battle, First Ascendant Ji'nara arrived using a Tal'darim mothership, attempting to break the line of the Dominion. However, the Dominion defenses held, and the Tal'darim invasion force was defeated.

During the chaos of the battle, General Davis was able to escape aboard the Medusa. Nova and her crew then boarded the Griffin and began to hunt her down.[2]

WalkthroughEdit

This mission is a defensive mission, where the Tal'darim will attack down set lanes. While initially they will only come through three lanes, four more will open up as the level progresses, two on each side. The bonus objective of the level involves keeping a building near the frontlines alive, essentially requiring that the front-center lane of defenses not be overrun.

The first waves are fairly weak, and can be handled by the Dominion and Defender of Man defenses as well as Nova and the siege tanks and liberators the player starts with. As such, the early game should be focused on establishing a firm economy, and taking the two expansions near the main base. Once that is up and running, begin pumping out more liberators, siege tanks, and battlecruisers, especially if they are given the special ordinance upgrade. These can use their tactical jump ability to teleport to areas where defenses are weak. Marines also serve as a good mineral dump, as they can attack the air units of the later waves.

Around the mid-game, the player will gain access to Gorgons, which will strafe a lane and destroy most units it comes across. They will deal heavy damage to high priority targets such as the mothership, and relieve pressure on a lane long enough for the player to reinforce them should they begin to fall. Beware, as they are not invincible, and units such as void rays can destroy the Gorgon before it completes its run. There is one Gorgon available for each starting lane, and each have a separate cooldown of 180, 240 and 300 seconds on normal, hard and brutal, respectively.

Across the city is a subway system, with one entry point near the player's base one and several near most of the lanes of attack. Use these to move ground forces around to each lane, and reinforce weak spots. Nova herself can serve to nearby solo one of the lane's defenses, and can use pulse grenade to weaken groups or snipe on key targets that funnel in. In addition, building several ghost academies is beneficial for large waves of attack, as the Tal'darim utilize minimal detection and nukes can clear out large attack waves, even doing serious damage to the Tal'darim motherships. When motherships appear, use Nova's abilities to deal damage to it, preferably snipe as it can stay out of its detection range. Marines and goliaths can aid in bringing it down quickly should it begin to seriously pressure defenses.

For the "One Woman Army" achievement, construct a large number of ghost academies, around 15-20. Through the early game, try to ensure Nova gets the last hit on as many Tal'darim as she can. As the midgame approaches begin to nuke every opportunity that it seems like there will be a large cluster of units. It may be beneficial to allow the outer defenses to fall, as when the Tal'darim hit the Dominion lines to lanes of attack cluster together, allowing nukes to hit a greater number of Tal'darim.[2]

AchievementsEdit

DarkSkies1 SC2AchiveImage Dark Skies
Points

10 Achievement SC2 Game1

Criteria

Complete the “Dark Skies” mission in Nova: Covert Ops.

Edit
DarkSkies2 SC2AchiveImage Until Death Fleet We Part
Points

10 Achievement SC2 Game1

Criteria

Destroy 300 enemy units with Gorgons in the "Dark Skies" mission.

Edit
DarkSkies3 SC2AchiveImage Battlecruiser Operational
Points

10 Achievement SC2 Game1

Criteria

Destroy 15 units with the Battlecruiser's Yamato Cannon in the "Dark Skies" mission on Normal difficulty or higher.

Edit
DarkSkies4 SC2AchiveImage One Woman Army
Points

10 Achievement SC2 Game1

Criteria

Destroy 333 units with Nova in the "Dark Skies" mission on Hard difficulty or higher.

Edit

TriviaEdit

  • In the eastern lane of the map, there is a structure with a holographic Space Lord's Starbreaker mount as well as posters of the Queen of Ghosts Kerrigan skin from Heroes of the Storm.

ReferencesEdit

  1. Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Nova Covert Ops. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Cinematic: The Emperor's Justice (in English). 2016-11-22.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Mission: Nova Covert Ops, Dark Skies (in English). 2016-11-22.