Exploring the StarCraft computer game. I've been playing StarCraft since 1999. I am fairly good at the game but as of 2002, I do not have over 1000 wins likes some players have.

Quickies

Top 10 Basic Tips

  1. Continuously make workers (SCVs, Probes, or Drones) throughout the game. The only time you stop is when you've hit the population limit. In the early game, do not queue up workers; instead have one in production at a time because you need the surplus money to make things.
    • Collecting Vespene Gas. If your town hall (Command Center, Hatchery, or Nexus) is close to the gas geyser, then 3-4 workers is the most you'll need per geyser.
    • Collecting Minerals. You will know that you have enough workers collecting Minerals when every Mineral field always has a worker on it at all times. That is as soon as a worker is done another takes its place immediately. There are usually more than two workers per Mineral field.
  2. Continuously make supply objects (Supply Depots, Pylons, and Overlords) throughout the game. For long games, make more than than the 200 limit in case some get destroyed.
  3. Gather intelligence, ie do reconnaissance. Scout with your 5th or 6th worker: you should at least know the location of the original home base of each player.  Have a few units patrolling large areas outside of your base: this is good for both recon and counter recon. Recon before attacks, esp. before major attacks. Recon counters: Tell one of your workers to attack an early scout because often times they are not keeping a close eye on the scout.
    • Protoss: Place Pylons and Cannons in key locations especially since they have no Supply cost. Place Observers in key locations.
    • Terran: Scan regularly (I usually have one or two ComSat Stations assigned to Group Number 0 and 9). Place Turrets (because they are cheap and fast to make) or other buildings in key locations especially since they have no Supply cost.
    • Zerg: Burrow Zerglings in key locations, but in slightly less noticeable spots. Have Queens apply Parasite.
  4. Spend your Minerals. Never have more than enough to rebuild your town hall, ie roughly 500 Minerals.
  5. Rush attacks will only work in three cases:
    1. You're playing against a computer who will do stupid things like send workers after your scout.
    2. You're playing against a human who has not set up for rush defense. Basic rush defense involves setting up defensive structures almost in the midst of your crystals ASAP. (The alternate method is to plug up your doorway but it will take more time.) Counter attack with your workers but don't bother to chase them a great distance from your base.
      • Protoss: Make Pylon, make Forge, make Cannon.
      • Terran: Get Barracks, make Bunker, fill with at least 1 Marine.
      • Zerg: Get Spawning Pool, make Sunken Colony.
    3. Players team up against a single player.
  6. Avoid sprawl. Focus units and buildings in smaller territories or a limited number of key positions. It takes more resources to cover larger territories or many positions.
  7. Make large numbers of unit producing structures. EG: With one Barracks, you can only make one Marine at a time, but with six Barracks, you can make six Marines at a time.
  8. Attack in intervals. Small groups get killed much easier that larger groups. Keep attacking so you have the initiative and the tempo, ie control the opponent by making him/her react to you. Interval attacks keep your porch clear. Interval attacks buy you time to upgrade your units, gather intelligence, and develop strategies.
  9. Drops are very effective.
    • Offense. Drop either in the middle of the workers, in areas without anti-air units, or the enemy's outer perimeter. Small drops can be effective. Large drops can be as effective, if not more so, than a victory fleet. Use a large number of transport units (even if some of them are empty) especially if you expect some to get killed. If you use decoys, they should arrive slightly ahead.
      • Protoss: Don't forget to have Templars cast Hallucinate to make more decoys. Protoss can use either Shuttles or Arbiters to do drops. 4+ Reavers, a 4+ of Templars, and 1+ Arbiters make a great drop attack force.
      • Terran: A single Siege Tank dropped off on a ledge by a Dropship in the early game can be very effective. 4+ Siege Tanks, 16+ Marines, and 1+ Science Vessels make a great drop attack force.
      • Zerg: There must be a surplus number of Overlords used for drops because they are the slowest air transport units in the game and because they also serve as a supply object. On rare occasions you may "drop" by using Nydus Canals on the Creep of an unwary Zerg opponent. 4+ Ultralisks, 16+ Hydralisks, and 2+ Defilers mak a great drop attack force.
    • Defense. Anti-air units on the edges and scattered throughout a base are essential but they will need support from units. Keep a mix of units through out depending on your opponent.
      • Protoss. Keep Templars scattered about to quickly wipe out dropped forces or air units.
      • Terran. Ghosts are great at Locking. Cloaked Wraiths are quick and fast. Science Vessel is handy to EMP attacking Protoss.
      • Zerg.
  10. Holding doorways:
    • Do not block up a doorway. Usually you should leave a decent path for your units to pass through. In low maintenance areas you may want to truly block it up so that even your own troops can't get through without destroying the structures. Exceptions:
      • Protoss: Small units like your Zealots and Templars can walk their way through a doorway filled with cannons. Reavers and Dragoons will have to use Arbiter Recall or Shuttles to get out.
      • Terran: Terran can leave a path and block up by using a building that can lift or land to open or close the path (sort of like a drawbridge) as needed.
      • Zerg: Small units like your Zerglings can walk their way through a door way filled with Sunken and Spore Colonies. The larger units will have to use Nydus Canall or Overlords to get out.
    • Do not set up in a doorway, instead set up near the doorway (whether in front of or behind it). (I prefer this method over the Terran drawbridge.) More units can be positioned near a doorway than in it. Setting up near a doorway also avoids blocking up the doorway.
      Red Terran has incorrectly set up in the doorway.
      • Only 2 Bunkers defend the doorway used.
      • Troops can only come out in single file.
      • Tanks can't get out at all.
      • Enemy Dragoons can attack 11 abreast.
      Just outside the doorway would be bad as well.
      White Terran has correctly set up near the doorway.
      • 4 Bunkers defend the doorway.
      • Troops can come out in 2 columns, each 3 abreast.
      • Tanks can get out.
      • Enemy Dragoons can attack only 5 abreast.
      SCREENSHOT: Inorrect build in the doorway. SCREENSHOT: Correct build just inside the doorway

Tips for All Races

Tips for Specific Races

Backstabbing

I hate backstabbing, but in StarCraft it seems that there is no shortage of misfits who will backstab. Backstabbers must get some perverse pleasure in the immoral act of breaking a contract (aka a promise). The appeal cannot be the opportunity to artificially raise their win/loss stats, because there are easier, safer and more ethical ways to do that. The simplest way is to set up a 2 versus 1 computer game; even if the other player decides to backstab, the wary player will have prepared for it all along.

I am listing some backstabbing scenarios so they can be avoided.

Move vs Attack Spelled Out

You must know the nuances of the various "attack" commands intuitively in order to be effective:

Links

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