StarCraft® II

D's Guide P2: Basic Rules to live by

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There are exceptions to almost every rule, but I'll be compiling a list of basic rules of thumb that are generally a good idea to follow. This is a list of tips and tricks that will help keep you competitive in SC2.

1) Keep building workers out of all of your nexii, hatcheries, and command centers. Never stop. If you've maxed out your workers in one base and your workers are running around instead of mining then...

2) Expand to a new location and send workers to the new location. Build another nexus, hatchery, or command center before your first base has run out of resources. The best thing you can do is to expand as soon as you can, without leaving yourself vulnerable to being overrun.

3) Don't leave resources such as gas or minerals lying around. If you have resources sitting around doing nothing then those resources are useless to you. If you don't spend them you might as well not have them. Always use every mineral and gas you have. If you have 5000 minerals lying around than build a bunch of gateways, hatcheries, or Barracks and start pumping out cheap units in large numbers. Your resources aren't doing you any good if you don't use them. If you must, expand and start collecting more gas .

4) Don't focus too much on static defense. A few photon cannons, spine crawlers, or bunkers can help you hold off your opponent in the early game while you build up a more comprehensive army, but don't expect them to hold off forever. Attack/armor upgrades only affect your units, not your buildings. Eventually your defenses will become weak and crumble to upgraded siege units such as brood lords, siege tanks, or colossi. Even worse, your opponent might just go around them and destroy your unprotected base.

5) Learn to balance economy and your army. From time to time in your game think "ok, can I afford the minerals to build another expansion?" and "Do i have the forces to defend that expansion?". Knowing when to expand and when to focus on your army take experience, but in order to get better at it you must first try.

6) Don't focus only on winning with cheese. Sure you might beat some newbs, and it might look like easy wins for a while but it won't last. Eventually you'll fight better players and you'll find your cheese has stopped working. You'll be forced to use standard strategies only to find out you don't have the slightest idea how to beat a good player without cheesing. Cheese can be a fun and amusing change of pace, but it shouldn't be the only thing you do.

7) Playing with the mindset that something is "cheap" is a good way to lose. Don't whine every time you lose in a way that you didn't expect. Instead watch the replay, think about what happened, think about what you could have done to stop it, and if you still can't figure it out come to the forums and ask what you could have done differently. The game isn't perfectly balanced but in most cases it is a better idea to learn how to stop strategies instead of whining about how you lost to them

8) Build only as much supply as you need and build it as you need it. Don't waste 2000 minerals on overlords, pylons, and supply depots that you don't need. Remember, that's 2000 minerals you could be putting toward troops or on a nexus/hatch/CC. Build your supply units just before you need them. An overlord at 9 supply, 15 supply , and 25 supply is all you really need. There's no need to build 4 supply depots before your second rax.

Part 1: Picking a Race
http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/106670678

Part 3: Dictionary of SC2 Terms
http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/106470658

Part 4: Build Orders
http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/109981001

Part 5: What you might not know
http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/189239122

Part 6: The advantage
http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/608531699
Edited by Duban on 9/3/2011 4:05 PM PDT
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Posts: 607
7) Playing with the mindset that something is "cheap" is a good way to lose. Don't whine every time you lose in a way that you didn't expect. Instead watch the replay, think about what happened, think about what you could have done to stop it, and if you still can't figure it out comes to the forums and ask what you could have done differently. The game isn't perfectly balanced but in most cases it is a better idea to learn how to stop strategies instead of whining about how you lost to them


I think that this point is the best thing that people can take away from this.

When you lose, don't blame it on imbalance or cheese or anything. Take the blame yourself.

If you blame yourself for every loss, the only way you can win is to improve your own play. It makes you able to adapt much easier.

It sounds harsh, but trust me, its alot better.
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Posts: 26
bump

good read!
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Posts: 19
great stuff
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very helpful
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Nah, don't ALWAYS build workers, especially if you are Zerg. There are tons and tons of situations in which you need to stop building workers, especially late game.
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Great post!
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Nah, don't ALWAYS build workers, especially if you are Zerg. There are tons and tons of situations in which you need to stop building workers, especially late game.


I think the intent is to get people used to always macroing. If you think "I always need to build workers" then you are developing good habits for success in this economy focused game. Once that is down then cutting workers for specific build orders and figuring out when to stop them completely at T3 will come naturally. Having the base line "always build" as a new player, who I assume these instructions are intended for, is a good thing.

Nice guides, quality posts.

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Awesome posts Duban!

Its really helping myself as a former SC1 player get back into the mindset that I need to start thinking about how I'm playing the game and how to succeed.
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Posts: 89
Awesome! I love every bit of this game and this is possibly the Best Game ever Created! It has everything thought out and well-balance. Well Done Blizzard!!!!
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thx for the advice i will use it
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6) Don't focus only on winning with cheese. Sure you might beat some newbs, and it might look like easy wins for a while but it won't last. Eventually you'll fight better players and you'll find your cheese has stopped working. You'll be forced to use non-cheese strategies only to find out you don't have the slightest idea how to beat a good player without cheesing. Cheese can be a fun and amusing change of pace, but it shouldn't be the only thing you do.

Considering that you might actually be writing a guide to help "newbs", I would ask, as a newb myself, just what is it that you mean by cheese? Help a brotha out. I just don't know what you're getting at here. The rest of the guide I appreciate greatly. This, I just don't understand. hehe.
I'm just not cheese-savvy.

Edit: I see you answer this in Part 3 of your guide. =)
Edited by Roosta on 7/28/2010 4:51 PM PDT
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Posts: 1,796
6) Don't focus only on winning with cheese. Sure you might beat some newbs, and it might look like easy wins for a while but it won't last. Eventually you'll fight better players and you'll find your cheese has stopped working. You'll be forced to use non-cheese strategies only to find out you don't have the slightest idea how to beat a good player without cheesing. Cheese can be a fun and amusing change of pace, but it shouldn't be the only thing you do.

Considering that you might actually be writing a guide to help "newbs", I would ask, as a newb myself, just what is it that you mean by cheese? Help a brotha out. I just don't know what you're getting at here. The rest of the guide I appreciate greatly. This, I just don't understand. hehe.
I'm just not cheese-savvy.

From Part 3: The dictionary of Terms

Cheese- An all in strategy that is highly unorthodox and usually involves taking an opponent by surprise

Cheese can be anything from building photon cannons inside your enemies base and then overwhelming him with cannons, it can be proxy gateways built outside your enemy base, it can be a 6 pool zergling rush, it can be an all in reaper gambit, or you can lift off your Command center early put it next to your opponent and turn it into a planetary fortress. Basically if it's unusual, banks on your opponent not knowing how to deal with it, and if you lose you've lost the game because you're behind economically it's probably a cheese.
Edited by Duban on 7/28/2010 4:56 PM PDT
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Posts: 254
I have to agree with everything except for number 8. I've seen a lot of good zerg players make a ton of overlords so they don't run into the dreaded supply block. Same with the other races, but mostly for zerg.
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Good Job Keep it up
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I'll thumb-up this post before reading it just based on the fact that the last one you made was quite useful to people. :P Keep em comin Duban!
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Thanks for the tips. I'm new to the Starcraft franchise, I was too young to really get started in it when it came out then never got around to playing SC1. I've been watchin alot of videos and commentaries (HuskyStarcraft FTW) to try to get strategies and learn what I should do, but tips are always nice for newbies like me.
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Wow! As a new player any insight is welcome! This topic is much appreciated! Keep 'em coming!

Thank you!
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Posts: 6
Excellent guide!

I am too lazy/impatient to run through the tutorials (sorry!) so I apologize if I am asking for redundant information but...

...is there any way to select units without the mouse? I like to have my AOE units "Hold Position" while I let the Medics and Marines run back and forth as needed. This works great until something changes and I need just 1 kind of unit somewhere else.

What I do now is select the entire group and then unselect everything I don't need. Needless to say, this can be cumbersome. I need a better way.
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