Campaign/Back in the Saddle

From Liquipedia StarCraft 2 Wiki
[e][h]Heart of the Swarm
Back in the Saddle
Minimap - Back in the Saddle.jpg
Mission Information
Mission Objective
  • Get to the Sublevel Door
  • Defend the Sublevel Door
  • Escape the Sublevel
  • Defend the Tram Engines
  • Reach the Spaceport
  • Destroy the Archangel
  • Kerrigan Must Survive
Available heroes:

Back in the Saddle is the second mission of the Zerg Heart of the Swarm Campaign.

Kerrigan is in a research facility, and must escape it before Mengsk destroys it.

Primary Objectives[edit]

  • Get to the Sublevel Door
  • Defend the Sublevel Door
  • Escape the Sublevel
  • Defend the Tram Engines
  • Reach the Spaceport
  • Destroy the Archangel
  • Kerrigan Must Survive


This mission is quite linear, so you should not have any problems finding your way forward. The first couple of encounters will be used to show you Kerrigans abilities Kinetic Blast and Crushing grip. The first is a single target damage spell, the other one lifts up all enemies in the marked circle also dealing some damage to them. You should use both frequently during this mission. You will also see stations with healing boxes, these replenish both your health and energy. Once you reach the Sub level door, you will need to defend it from some Zerg units and on higher difficulties some Dominion forces as well.

Once you have gone down to the Sub level, you will have timed shutting doors, simply make it into the next area before the time runs out. There are a lot of health packs so don't hesitate to take some damage and use your abilities. Eventually you will reach a console that lets you either use the gas defense mechanism or release Zerg upon the unsuspecting dominion forces. Releasing the Zerg seems to be the most efficient way to move forward, any enemy surviving the initial fighting should be easy to kill off without even using your abilities.

The next part is defending the tram you're on from Dominion forces. There is a Health station in the middle of the tram on hard and brutal while there are 2 on normal and casual, you still only need 1 to use your abilities all the time, use the minimap to see where the enemies are coming from. After a few minutes you will make it out to the spaceport. There are only a few enemies before this games first boss fight Archangel.

There are healing stations that you can use if your HP falls to low. Since Archangel is a heroic unit, crushing grip does not work on him. Kinetic blast works very well though. Archangel starts off by shooting straight forward, so sidestep that and unleash your power unto him. When he has lost around 25% of his HP, he will go up into the air and do bombing rounds on the platform you are on. These runs are shown a bit before he starts doing them by red arrows. At the same time, the Dominion drops troops unto the platform. Worth noticing is that Archangel does friendly fire, so you can let him kill off the normal enemies, by luring them into his bombing run. He then lands and start shooting rockets at the ground shown by red circles. He continues this pattern until dead.


Back in the Saddle
Back in the Saddle.jpg
Complete the "Back in the Saddle" mission. 10
Complete the mission to obtain this achievement.
Full Throttle
Full Throttle.jpg
Prevent the Dominion from destroying a Tram Engine during the Tram Ride in the "Back in the Saddle" mission. 10
To make this one quite easy, use Kerrigan's Crushing grip to make the enemies unable to move so that you can destroy them before they can damage the engines.
Brutal Legend
Brutal Legend.jpg
Don´t take damage from the Archangel in the Back in the Saddle mission on normal difficulty. 10
Try not to stand too close to him, most of his attacks are displayed on your screen with red circles or lines.
Guide for all Achievements
Nick of Time
Nick of time.jpg
Complete "Back in the Saddle" with more then 40 seconds on each lockdown on Hard difficulty. 10
Guide for nick of time
If you have trouble with this achievement, it's worth noting that you can use Crushing grip to run past enemies. You don't have to kill all the enemies in your path so if you manage to run past them, you may want to do that. The rubble that is blocking the way for the Ultralisks can be destroyed by a Kinetic Blast and the Ultralisk can be held by Crushing Grip. Doing this will save you a fair amount of seconds.

Easter Eggs[edit]

If you wait 1:50 minutes (in-game time) at the start of the mission you will trigger a short dialogue between Kerrigan and Raynor in which Kerrigan makes a reference to Starcraft 1 in which she read Raynors mind when they first met and accused him of having dirty thoughts and called him a pig.

Raynor is a pig


Based on your choices in the Wings of Liberty campaign, Nova will have different reactions.

Nova's different reactions