How To: Scouting.

Posts: 528
http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/627973877?page=1
This is my how to on build orders. If you find this useful please feel free to bump it with a post or thumbs me up.

Alright, so today I'm going to talk about scouting.

First, lets take an overview of units that terran scout with. SCV, reaper, marine, hellions and OC. Additionally you can scout with a barracks/factory and air units later in the game.

When to scout: I usually like to send the SCV that built my supply depot off to scout. while he is building you can rally point to different areas by holding shift and then clicking so you can set up where you want him to scout. If you're planning to cheese send your first SCV that you create, if you're really weary of cheese send the SCV right after the one that starts building the supply depot. So really you either scout on your 7th supply, your 10th supply or your 12th supply.

Now to break scouting down in the game.

Early: Scout your opponent with an SCV, then either build a reaper, build a barracks near his base to float into his base, or comm sat him to see what he is going. The cheapest is the reaper, the most cost effective is the barracks, and the fastest is the comm sat.

Mid Game: Air units or an scv/marine/hellion need to be scouting expansions. You don't want him hiding an expansion. Comm sat and floating builds are the only way you're going to get to look at his base at this point, if you choose the building you will lose it however. Still cheaper then the comm sat. Use an SCV or a marine to scout his army, you can see his composition, placement, etc... and although you'll lose 50 minerals it's no biggie.

Late Game: Comm sat is still your best scout. SCOUT EXPANSIONS, do not let him get a hidden one. If he gets an expansion you need to know about it. Also scouting his army and it's positioning is very critical at this stage.

Now, why is it important to scout? Well, for two reasons. You want to know what your opponent is doing. Is he building hellions to harass you? Does he have a phase prisim to warp in units? What about surprise DT's? If you know what he is doing you'll be able to effectively combat him. Second, you want to know when and where he is expanding. You need to know this because you can either choose to expand or choose to punish him for expanding. One way or another he is spending 400 minerals on that expansion so you will technically be "up" on that expansion, not to mention the cost of workers to saturate it.

Finally a list and overview of units the other two races have to scout with and how to stop or deny scouting.

Protoss:
Probe: Just like the SCV roll for us the probe has the same roll. Without compromising your build they will nearly always scout you early, that is ok though kill the probe before revealing your hand. Later map control plays a key roll in denying scouting for expansions. Also not keeping your whole army at the front will deny scouting for unit composition.

Observer: Ravens or missle turrets and a viking or a few marines handle this easily, and since observers are a hefty 100 gas it's well worth it. I highly suggest incorporating a raven into a build vs. toss in order to eliminate their map hacks observers.

Phoenix: This one is hard to stop, it's very fast. The only real thing you can do is hope it flys over your army and have enough marines to 1 shot it. Really just an undeniable scout.

Zerg:
Drone: (Read probe)

Zergling: (Read probe) These guys will often hold the watch towers too. Before you move out send a marine or two to clear the watch towers so as to not tip your hand.

Overseer: When you hear sac an overseer it's basically the same as what we do with our floating buildings. Keeping a few marines at the edges of your base will help dial this down but it's really just impractical to stop this all together. The best way? Vikings. They'll either force him to recall his overlords or kill it before it sees anything.

Overseer: Just like an overlord but faster and healthier, really it's unlikely you'll be able to stop him from scouting. Just make sure you kill the changeling when he drops it.

Liked this thread? Find it useful? Please give me a thumbs up and post on it so that others will see it and it gets bumped. If you have any questions feel free to ask and I will do my best to answer.

This is Beammeup signing out.
Edited by Beammeup on 8/30/2010 8:48 AM PDT
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Posts: 1
Very helpful, thank you.
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Posts: 188
Could you please sit behind me while I play and remind me to scout? Every game I lose comes from not scouting, and I have no excuse for it :(
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Posts: 43
There is an easier way to scout expansions. Build a Hellion and let it patrol from one expansion to the next. Once set up the thing will do that forever and you will know when stuff is happening.
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Posts: 528
Yeah hellions, I knew I'd forget something... I'll edit the post... thanks lol...
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Posts: 33
Nice post and tutorial for those that need help with scouting. :) i feel like everyone needs to learn how to scout and prepare for whats coming, and lacking it is the reason why people lose to cheese or surprising things at the lower levels.

Hope you don't mind me adding in about vikings in TvZ. This isn't for you Beammeup, i know you already know this ;)

When you scout, make sure you change your composition accordingly, even if you're still going MMM, change the unit composition within your MMM.

Against Zerg, i feel vikings are the best way to scout. I usually make a single Viking. The cost efficiency of 1 Viking is amazing against a zerg player. During the Early-Mid game, the only AA the zerg has are queens by his base, so you really shouldn't be scared to move that viking out around the map. Usually a zerg player will keep 1 or 2 overlords near your base and others at the different expansions, this will make them bring an overlord all the way from their base to do a sac overlord or a nydus. It supply blocks him which is very detrimental at this stage, and this makes him waste 100 mineral and a larvae. You can snipe out as many overlords that he has out around the field away from his base, then swoop in his base and check everything out. Don't be afraid of those silly queens that are in his base, you can just fly right over them and check everything out, just don't try to snipe out overlords inside his base if the queens are near. Even if you later lose the viking to mutas, the role of that viking is done.
Edited by deso on 8/30/2010 8:57 AM PDT
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Posts: 370
What do you recommend for a probe harras? Specifically when they are harrsing your scv which building and happens to be out up at the front entrance. I've found myself once before having a probe attacking my scv buildling the barracks. I sent an scv to kill it but he simply microed me b/c of how much faster the probe is compared to scvs.
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Posts: 33
What do you recommend for a probe harras? Specifically when they are harrsing your scv which building and happens to be out up at the front entrance. I've found myself once before having a probe attacking my scv buildling the barracks. I sent an scv to kill it but he simply microed me b/c of how much faster the probe is compared to scvs.

When the probe comes in, it will 99% of the time harass your barracks scv building. Always be quick to send a SCV from your mineral line and Attack click near it. If you react too slowly the probe will kill the SCV, if you keep reacting fast enough, the probe can't kill the SCV.

A smart protoss player will then retreat recharge his shields and come again, so be prepared to send the scv back to attack it after it leaves.
Edited by deso on 8/30/2010 9:00 AM PDT
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Posts: 528
Actually all harvesters have the same movement. Anyways... in diamond they ALWAYS building harass. As soon as I see a scout I immediately pull an SCV off the line. Two if my worker is so wounded I need to replace him. Basically just realize you need to ward off the scout with a second worker. Annoying but necessary.
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Posts: 370
Actually all harvesters have the same movement. Anyways... in diamond they ALWAYS building harass. As soon as I see a scout I immediately pull an SCV off the line. Two if my worker is so wounded I need to replace him. Basically just realize you need to ward off the scout with a second worker. Annoying but necessary.


That's interesting on the move speed b/c he was ever so slightly faster than my scv IE going out of range.
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Posts: 528
Only due to the stopping and starting of the workers. If his worker comes to a stop and then moves again and the same happens for you he will appear to be moving fast because he got out of range when in reality you both are moving at the same.
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Posts: 370
Only due to the stopping and starting of the workers. If his worker comes to a stop and then moves again and the same happens for you he will appear to be moving fast because he got out of range when in reality you both are moving at the same.


Actually I am aware of that type of movement, we were going in a straight line. I'm not saying you're wrong here it was just odd that he was going faster than I could.
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Posts: 528
Well I may be wrong since I've never compared it. They're so similar it really doesn't matter. We're getting away from the point though, which is just pull an SCV or two off the line to get him off your worker and you'll be fine.
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Posts: 370
Well I may be wrong since I've never compared it. They're so similar it really doesn't matter. We're getting away from the point though, which is just pull an SCV or two off the line to get him off your worker and you'll be fine.


Sorry about that! Anywho, Thank you for the input, i was hesitant to pull my workers off to take care of it because of the mineral loss but it's certnaily better than loosing time b/c of scout harrasing.

Great post btw TY!
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Posts: 528
It's no problem, you had a question and I did the best I could to answer. Nothing to apologize for. Thanks for the compliment.
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Posts: 528
bump
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Posts: 451
Might want to put something about changelings in here so people know why their marine isn't moving.
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Posts: 126
Good stuff man, I need to do more scouting for expansions with spare SCVs especially when I have an excessive stockpile of minerals.
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Posts: 96
someone needs to compile all of these
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Posts: 528
someone needs to compile all of these


I will be doing that when I finish the series.
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