Carriers v. Mutalisk

Posts: 25
How well do carriers fair against mutalisk? I play random, and very rarely see muta v. protoss play, but Carriers would seem a natural counter to Muta base harass. It would seem to me that a single Carrier at a mineral line would be more than enough to handle most Muta harass, and if they go mass muta it wouldn't be difficult to have enough Carriers to counter growing numbers.

Mostly I'm just looking for the reasons this isn't standard play against mass-muta.
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Posts: 3,577
very well
but takes too long to build and tech
/thread
Edited by XxXxX on 2/17/2012 11:05 PM PST
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Posts: 5,676
well, 5 carriers can beat 30 mutas when there is no focus firing

To force a lack of focus firing, throw in a lot of phoenix hallucinations :D
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Posts: 1,227
Mutalisks come out way before carriers, and can be massed much more quickly. On top of this, if the Zerg scouts the Carriers at all, they are bound to have a substantial number of Corruptors on the field.

That being said, you are allowed to mass carriers, and the Zerg doesn't have that many Corruptors, Carriers tear mutalisks to shreds. Much of the Muta's bounce attack, richochets off the interceptors, which allows the carriers themselves to tank for a much longer period of time. This, combined with the huge interceptor range, and the fact that carriers are the highest dps unit in the game, means that they obliterate Mutas for both cost and supply once you get large numbers.

In the end though, on a practical level, Carriers against Mutas is a very hard strat to actually execute.
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Posts: 4,206
Mutalisks come out way before carriers, and can be massed much more quickly. On top of this, if the Zerg scouts the Carriers at all, they are bound to have a substantial number of Corruptors on the field.

That being said, you are allowed to mass carriers, and the Zerg doesn't have that many Corruptors, Carriers tear mutalisks to shreds. Much of the Muta's bounce attack, richochets off the interceptors, which allows the carriers themselves to tank for a much longer period of time. This, combined with the huge interceptor range, and the fact that carriers are the highest dps unit in the game, means that they obliterate Mutas for both cost and supply once you get large numbers.

In the end though, on a practical level, Carriers against Mutas is a very hard strat to actually execute.


This is completely true, but if carriers in even numbers as low as 4-5 come out and he has only mutas to counter, you win. Period. That is, unless he has a few hundred hydras in reserve to buy him enough time to get corruptors.
Edited by Owlfeathers on 2/18/2012 6:04 AM PST
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Posts: 263
Target firing down the Carriers will result in a Zerg win.

Carriers are high tech and hard to get, needless to say they are way WAY more effective once you get the upgrade (Graviton Catapult iiirc), but they are still huge units and are easy to targe fire down.

30 mutas will destroy 1 carrier too fast.
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Posts: 263
Just did this quick on the unit tester map.

10 mutas wreck - 1 carrier with graviton catapult... Mutas lose 1.
Even without micro, just A-move in the mutas still wreck the carrier.

I used the number 10 because if the zerg times his larvae correctly, he will be able to produce 10 right off the bat.

Gonna do more testing.

2 Carriers with GC wreck 10 Mutas only losing 3 interceptors. (NO TARGET FIRE)

10 Mutalisks target firing down 2 carriers... Carriers win. Again mutas have zero upgrades.

I carrier left with 83 Hull.


30 Mutalisks without Micro wreck 4 carriers with 20 + mutas left. No target fire here.

6 carriers vs 30 Mutalisks without Micro. Carriers win, all carriers alive 1 carrier left with 3 HP. Constant stream of interceptors here so mutas lose big time.

6 carriers vs 30 mutalisks WITH target fire. Mutas win only 9 mutas left though.

+1 Attack Mutas vs +1 Attack Interceptors:

10 Mutas vs 1 carrier - Mutas win, 8 mutas left.
15 Mutas vs 2 carriers - Mutas win, 10 mutas left. (no micro)
15 Mutas vs 3 Carriers - Carriers win, 2 left. (No micro)
15 Mutas vs 3 Carriers - Mutas win 4 left 1 at half hp(with target fire)
30 Mutas vs 6 Carriers - Carriers win, 1 with 6 HP left. (No target fire)
30 Mutas vs 6 Carriers - Mutas win, 10 mutas left. (Target fire)

I think upgrades favour Carriers way more so I'm gonna see what happens.

+1 Attack Mutas vs +2 Attack Carriers:
10 Mutas vs 1 Carrier - Mutas win - 8 Mutas left.
15 Mutas vs 2 Carriers - Mutas win, 6 Mutas left.
15 Mutas vs 3 Carriers - Carriers win, 3 left - 1 has 200 HP left(no target fire)
15 Mutas vs 3 Carriers - Carriers win, 2 left 1 with 25 HP left (target fire)
30 Mutas vs 6 Carriers - Carriers win, 6 left, 2 with 180 HP left (no target fire)
30 Mutas vs 6 Carriers - Carriers win, 1 left no hull damage (target fire)

2/1 Mutas vs 2/1 Carriers:
10 Mutas vs 1 Carrier - Mutas win - 8 Mutas left
15 Mutas vs 2 Carriers - Mutas win - 9 left 1 with 25 HP remaining. (no target fire)
15 Mutas vs 3 Carriers - Carriers win, 2 left 1 with half shields. (No target fire)
15 Mutas vs 3 Carriers - Mutas win, 5 left 1 with 25 HP (target fire)
30 Mutas vs 6 Carriers - Carriers win, 6 left 1 with 50 HP left (no target fire)
30 Mutas vs 6 Carriers - Mutas win, 10 left 1 with 1 HP (target fire)

2/2 Mutas vs 3/2 Carriers (this can only mean decent numbers as upgrades are now considerably high)

20 Mutas vs 3 Carriers - Mutas win, 5 left, 2 with 40hp 1 with 10 hp (no target fire)
30 Mutas vs 6 Carriers - Carriers win, 4 left 1 with 90 hull. (no target fire)
30 Mutas vs 6 Carriers - Mutas win, 8 left full HP (target fire)

The muta death cloud really gets above 50, but its safe to assume getting over 6 carriers will be incredibly late game.

50 Mutas 3/2 vs 10 Carriers 3/3/1 - Carriers win, 9 left 1 with 50 Hull (no target fire)
50 Mutas 3/2 vs 10 Carriers 3/3/1 - Mutas win, 17left 3 with red HP left (target fire)

To beat a 50 muta 3/3 cloud with target fire, using 3/3/1 carriers you need.
12 Carriers beat 50 3/3 mutas, with target fire, 2 left full Hull.

Just to check if the outcome favors muta without target fire.

50 3/3 mutas vs 12 3/3/1 Carriers - Carriers win, 10 left 2 with yello hull.(No target fire)

NOTE: This is just unit vs unit on the unit tester, actually achieving something like this in a ladder match is completely improbable (if not impossible) and impractical. Gathering that amount of carriers with that amount of upgrades is really hard, and our current strategies just don't have the capabilites to do so.

Just answering the question... "How well do carriers fair against Mutas?"... and you can read the answer by yourself.

:D

Again... this is quite impractical on a ladder match and most likely done on 4 bases, which makes it almost impossible, so I will only say "Impractical and Improbable".

Thanks for reading
Edited by Psychotropic on 2/18/2012 8:58 AM PST
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Posts: 4,926
Did this a few games ago actually

6 Carriers + Mothership + About 15-20 Stalkers on the ground vs 30 Mutas. The Mothership goes down and 1 Carrier suffers slight hull damage but all 30 Mutas go down and the Stalkers and Carriers live. He targets them keep in mind

Upgrades: +2 attack on Carriers and Mothership and +1 on Stalkers with +1 Shields for all with +1 attack for Mutas

Later on in the same game, About 10 Mutas vs 2 Carriers with the above upgrades and no other support when he tries to counter-attack my main, Carriers don't take any hull damage at all


Replay:
http://www.sc2replayed.com/replay-videos/18019
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Posts: 25
@Psychotropic
So muta's only win with a significant investment advatage, and even then take pretty heavy losses? Did you do tests with the Carriers being micro'd? It is important to note that while Zerg have the "Burst Macro" advantage they are still limited by the same economic factors as every other race over an extended period of time. So while they *can* build 10 Muta's at once, it comes at the costs of production before that period.



very well
but takes too long to build and tech
/thread


In the end though, on a practical level, Carriers against Mutas is a very hard strat to actually execute.

Target firing down the Carriers will result in a Zerg win.

Carriers are high tech and hard to get, needless to say they are way WAY more effective once you get the upgrade (Graviton Catapult iiirc), but they are still huge units and are easy to targe fire down.

30 mutas will destroy 1 carrier too fast.


So the upcoming "fix" requires that you have a fleet beacon, meaning you will have access to carriers anyway. Why would 3 phoenix be better than 1 carrier? (Time to build, and supply wise that's about equal, but the carrier is cheaper).
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Posts: 1,219
A direct unit vs. unit would almost never happen anyway

In an actual battle, 4-5 carriers protected by a stalker ball in front of them will do tremendous damage to a muta ball as the mutas will need to fly into the stalkers' kill zone before they can even target the carriers. Most zerg army compositions that have large amounts of muta tend to not have too many roaches, meaning a pretty large stalker army will do very well for itself with carriers supporting it.
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Posts: 1,559
1 Carrier kills around 3-4 mutas in a straight up engaugement which is the only way carriers will enguage with mutas...

Edit: just checked on the unit tester. it takes 6 mutas to kill 1 carrier, with 1 muta in the red, and one muta fully alive, to kill 1 carrier.

obviously as muta numbers increase the effectiveness decreases, but if you stop micro carriers, you can effectivly do more damage.
Edited by LGWhiteGlint on 2/18/2012 12:34 PM PST
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Posts: 815
the point of mutas is that they avoid fights, just stalkers plus ht can EZPZ with mutas in a normal fight

so mutas just run away, kill some probes, run away kill some probes, base trade (zerg has 8 bases spread around the map) ftw
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Posts: 25
A single carrier over a nexus could easily defend against harass, once you get to 3 base having 3 carriers protecting your base would win a base race. 6 supply is actually really cheap cost to protect probes, and with the carriers 8 engagement range and 14 disengagement range it would require a quick response for mutas not to take damage.
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Posts: 1,503
if you're trying to base trade a protoss with carriers and you have mutas you're being ridiculous, and carrier range is so ridiculous that the mutas would have to engage eventually....

It all comes down to how many mutas and carriers, if you get 15 carriers nothing except corruptors will save the zerg...
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Posts: 263
Happylime

It is quite improbable to build 15 Carriers in a league match. The cost is amazingly high. 10 Carriers means an entire Gas Geyser and about a full base of resources.
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Posts: 683
very well
but takes too long to build and tech
/thread


I can have 6 carriers, a mothership, +2 air attack, +1 shields, 2 void rays, 4 phoenix, and numerous zealots on the field by ~15 minutes, or 2 less phoenix and a mothership. Take your pick, but it doesnt take that long to tech to, and it is a deadly combo considering how craptastic infestors or hydras are verses carriers, and the fact that you have some voids / phoenix + vortex to deal with corruptors or a large hydra force.

PS <3 sidewinder + venom for showing us that carriers can be obtained and used effectively.
Ive been tweaking my unit combination and so on to squeze out a third and see about making the attack less all-in. But hey, Im gold. I still have a heck of alot to figure out in timings.
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Posts: 88
The problem with carriers is the same problem with using most other units. Carriers are slower than mutas.

Also, investing hundreds (or even thousands) of minerals and gas into carriers can be countered in a snap by the Zerg making some corruptors. Not sure on the maths on this one as for whether corruptors are cost effective with or without corruption ability, but they take less time to make for sure...
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Posts: 231
Carrier is a siege unit, much like Colossi it's effective when the enemy can't fight back. And you can't have it roaming around alone. Phoenix new range upgrade at beacon will let Toss transition to air much more natural. So what you'd most likely see is Carriers being escorted by phoenixes.
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Posts: 112
02/17/2012 11:00 PMPosted by SomGuy
very rarely see muta v. protoss play


What?
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