StarCraft® II

HOTS Protoss: fixed?

Posts: 4,057
Herein, I'm including a link to a thread I created on the Protoss forums addressing my current concerns with Protoss:

http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/topic/7764376883

The overall thought is that Protoss is lacking in defensive detection, and offensive harassment capabilites in HoTS almost as much as in WoL. Some new timing attacks were added to their arsenal; however truely viable harassment is still an elusive thing for Protoss.

Suggested fixes are moving the observer and warp prism to make it easier for Protoss to attempt new strategies in HoTS (non-deathball stuff) while being able to create mobile detection (not locked into robo). Also mentioned is the hope that with these two swapped, Blizzard may begin to see enough attempts at harassment-centered play from protoss to know what needs to be buffed, if anything (probably some form of gateway buff, if any, at the twilight council).

Please leave constructive criticism, so that I can reply...or refine my thinking!

EDIT: if someone wants to post a link to the original thread in the HoTS forums, I'd be obliged.
Edited by Edowyth on 1/27/2013 5:58 PM PST
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What I post is from what I have seen on the HotS forums two or so weeks ago, so people may have stopped complaining about it by now.

01/27/2013 04:31 PMPosted by Edowyth
The overall thought is that Protoss is lacking in defensive detection


Cannons.
Whenever I read the HotS forums, I see protosses complaining that they can't fend off widow mines since they lost detect at mothership core. Multiple said that terrans have scan and zergs have spore crawlers without evo chamber requirement which means that protoss should have it at mothership core. Why not get a forge (which most do anyway) and some cannons? How hard is it for a protoss to put a cannon in their mineral line/front of base? Terrans and Zergs already need to put missile turrets/spore crawlers for oracles.

01/27/2013 04:31 PMPosted by Edowyth
create mobile detection (not locked into robo)


Oracle
Oracle is a mobile detect not in robo. It may not be as good, but it is still not based in robo.
Also on the HotS forums, I saw someone say that the oracle is not good for detect because it isn't invisible. The observer is the only cloaked detector in the game.

I don't play WoL or the beta, but it isn't unreasonable to build a few cannons if you scout a factory or use the Oracle's detect if you don't want to get the observer instead of complaining that the Mothership core got detect removed. The mothership core already is a great defender with the photon overcharge and it didn't need to have detect.
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Cannons.
Why not get a forge (which most do anyway) and some cannons? How hard is it for a protoss to put a cannon in their mineral line/front of base? Terrans and Zergs already need to put missile turrets/spore crawlers for oracles.


Very hard. Terrans and zerg have massable defensive units from a single production facility early on. Protoss do not. If you want to get any useful amount of stalkers/ sentries you're gonna need more than one gateway. That 300 mineral investment into defense severely hampers your standing army and makes (terran, especially) all-ins impossible to hold.

--EDITED--
Also, to be able to move out vs cloak (banshees, swarm hosts, widow mines) you'll need detection for the entire march across the map (and back, if anything survives). This means that, after 'investing' in a cannon you've got to buy robo + observer anyway. Terran uses scan for this situation and zerg...overseers (which they wanted anyway...). The last thing I want is to have to invest in a very-low dps static defense that I'm going to immediately have to spend MORE money making obsolete in a few seconds.
--EDITED--


create mobile detection (not locked into robo)


Oracle
Oracle is a mobile detect not in robo. It may not be as good, but it is still not based in robo.


You are correct that it's not based in robo. Do the math, how much gas is required for 2 minutes detection? How much time spent sitting around gathering energy on a unit that's supposed to be a harassment tool? Moreover, this LOCKS protoss into another deathball style. Who wants that?

--EDITED--
It's not mobile detection. It's emergency detection until you can get an observer.
--EDITED--
Edited by Edowyth on 1/27/2013 8:27 PM PST
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Oracle is fine. It's pretty damn good unless your opponent scouts. Even then you get a free scout by using revelation on his army when you pass through the base as well. I see it as a win win!
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Protoss detection is fine from what ive seen in pro streams.
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01/27/2013 11:57 PMPosted by Enigma
Protoss detection is fine from what ive seen in pro streams.


Protoss is more than fine in HotS.
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01/27/2013 11:52 PMPosted by Trista
Oracle is fine. It's pretty damn good unless your opponent scouts.


And if he does? It seems like a waste of money to have a harassment unit that does no harassment if it can't get into the mineral line. Sure, you can proceed to scouting with it, but what does it do if it does no damage, then the opponent does a standard timing attack?

Seems to me that you should just die. That's not cool. With mutas, banshees, hellions, etc you could at least do some damage behind the attacking force to try to pull them back. Static d pretty much shuts down all the harassment that the oracle could do. Seems more like a timing attack than harassment to me.
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And if he does? It seems like a waste of money to have a harassment unit that does no harassment if it can't get into the mineral line. Sure, you can proceed to scouting with it, but what does it do if it does no damage, then the opponent does a standard timing attack?Seems to me that you should just die. That's not cool. With mutas, banshees, hellions, etc you could at least do some damage behind the attacking force to try to pull them back. Static d pretty much shuts down all the harassment that the oracle could do. Seems more like a timing attack than harassment to me.


Oracles will always do damage.

They come at a time where you can kill all his units if he 1 rax expanded. He has to invest heavily into defences and you can snipe workers, tech labs and supply depots really easily.

They are like mutas who trade dps for health.
Edited by HeavyFresh on 1/28/2013 6:07 AM PST
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Oracles will always do damage.

They come at a time where you can kill all his units if he 1 rax expanded. He has to invest heavily into defences and you can snipe workers, tech labs and supply depots really easily.

They are like mutas who trade dps for health.
It implies it is time for you to stop expecting pure 1 rax expand to work. You need to adapt the build to scouting info and add things like an ebay sooner or go into starport tech sooner, as demonstrated by the VOD in the other thread.

Oracles come at a time when Terran is not expecting any aggression from WOL builds, but they should be expecting aggression from HOTS builds. Stargate in PvT is just a new style that Terrans need to learn to adapt to. Nothing OP about it, especially not the Oracle.

The REAL issue with the Oracle is that it is an all-or-nothing unit.

If Terran plays smart and gets defense (1 turret per mineral line or vikings), Oracles are a waste of gas, and Terran can push the Protoss shortly after and win the game. If the Terran is unprepared, Protoss does crippling damage and can either outright win or the Terran is behind in economy and enables Protoss to be more greedy with tech or economy with Terran being unable to do anything about it.

That's the real issue with the Oracle. If they made the Oracle a little more durable to turrets and vikings fire, they'd be able to do SOME damage, while not wiping out whole mineral lines, and still punishing unprepared Terrans heavily. Maybe a slight decrease in dps would be fine THEN.

Otherwise, Oracles are working as intended against a prepared vs unprepared player.
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I'm not a huge fan of the "oracle as detection" idea. Frankly, oracles are quite squishy and very expensive, meaning having them sit in your army is very risky for that investment. Combine this with the "band-aid detection" that it provides, you still end up needing observers if your opponent is going any kind of cloaked play.

Lets not forget that every time you have to detect with the oracle, that's a fair bit of harass you CAN'T do, making it even more expensive of an ability.
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01/28/2013 09:53 AMPosted by zappy
I'm not a huge fan of the "oracle as detection" idea.


People wanted non robo detection that could move. You guys got what you asked for.
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01/28/2013 09:58 AMPosted by Reno
I'm not a huge fan of the "oracle as detection" idea.


People wanted non robo detection that could move. You guys got what you asked for.
Right, i want that too, but not on the oracle. I thought that was clear in the post you quoted, but i suppose it was not.
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01/28/2013 09:53 AMPosted by zappy
I'm not a huge fan of the "oracle as detection" idea.
As a Protoss player, I will STRONGLY disagree with this.

Oracle/Stargate with detection is the ONE thing Protoss has needed since the release of Starcraft 2. Being pigeon-holed into Robo builds has been the bane of Protoss since WOL beta...

01/28/2013 09:53 AMPosted by zappy
Frankly, oracles are quite squishy and very expensive, meaning having them sit in your army is very risky for that investment.
The power kinda justifies it, but I do agree that increasing the hp slightly for a slight decrease in dps is probably a good idea.

01/28/2013 09:53 AMPosted by zappy
Combine this with the "band-aid detection" that it provides, y
This is not an issue. The "band-aid detection" allows Protoss to use opening builds that utilize Stargate tech instead of Robo, and create more diverse play. IF the need for detection arises, Protoss has to make sure he saves up enough energy on his Oracle for detection, but before that, he will have the chance to do some damage that justifies opening stargate tech, and further using this tech for the midgame and lategame. The band-aid detection is more for emergency detection that active detection that observers provide. If you're facing a skyTerran with cloaked Banshee from 2-3 ports, then Oracle detection is FAR from enough. You need Robo and observers, but you are not forced to OPEN Robo and go Colossus/Stalker.

01/28/2013 09:53 AMPosted by zappy
you still end up needing observers if your opponent is going any kind of cloaked play.
That's the way it should be. Stargate is not really replacing the need for Robo in dedicated cloaked unit situations, but if the other guys is only going to harass occasionally with 1-2 DT or 1-2 Banshees before a push, then Oracle detection is more than sufficient, and Protoss does not HAVE to invest 100 + 75 gas/obs on a Robo an observers...

It creates better strategic choices for Protoss and opens up the game more.

MS Core detection was actually HURTING strategic choices for Protoss.

Now, in PvP as well, Protoss DT Expand builds are viable again, and in PvT, using cloaked banshee harass from 1 port is viable again.

The moment the opponent is investing a lot of gas in cloaked units, then it makes sense to invest some gas in a Robo and less gas overall in observers which makes the defending Protoss SAVE more gas for higher tech units like Templar, Archons and even Colossi for a follow-up counter-push that will kill the opponent who invested a lot more gas in cloaked units and has insufficient amounts for his tech units like medivacs. ghosts, vikings, or Colossi or Archons etc.

It makes more sense to have a temporary and expensive detection on Stargate to get out of surprise cloaked unit situations such as midgame and lategame DT in PvP, or cloaked banshee attacks in early game from a 1-1-1 expand, whereas getting a Robo and obs makes more sense against someone going for a 1 base DT rush all-in, 2 port banshee on 1 base or 2 base 3 port banshee with cloak and raven.
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01/28/2013 09:53 AMPosted by zappy
Lets not forget that every time you have to detect with the oracle, that's a fair bit of harass you CAN'T do, making it even more expensive of an ability.
This is why SC2 is a strategy game. You either invest in an Oracle for offense or defense.

Offensive Oracles have the OPTION for detection which makes being offensive with Oracles a slight risk that can pay off big, but used defensively, Oracles are actually a solid choice against someone who is trying to harass you while you are trying to tech up faster, and the defensive scouting Oracles offer, work well into the plan of a Protoss who is playing defense and does not want to die to early and midgame pushes.

The Oracle can help see that with Revelation; I know a lot of people don't use it, but it is actually something I use quite often when doing a 2 base 1 stargate Oracle into Zealot/Archon that follows up with 3 base 2 stargate VR. I can know with my Oracle used defensively that my opponent is either doing a build that will hard-counter mine, or that he will be doing a push that will kill me, and I can adjust my build on the fly to adapt to the situation then return to my original plan after the other guy's attack fails.

Before, you HAD to go robo, get that observer out to know for sure what the opponent is doing, and rely on a LOT of guess-work through scouting a bunker, or roaches, gas on a Zerg base, chronoboost energy, etc to GUESS what the opponent is trying, which forces Protoss to use gas unnecessarily on sentries which slows down tech to the extent that you cannot afford ANYTHING but Colossi and Stalkers.

With Oracles, you can basically make a judgment call and choose to go Robo if you see a big attack coming with cloaked units, or you can choose to play more greedily with tech if the other guy is being really passive and is build masses of spines and bunkers.

WOL Protoss could not really do that with JUST Robo. It was either "timing attack or die-trying" most of the time...
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01/28/2013 10:08 AMPosted by Zamara
The "band-aid detection" allows Protoss to use opening builds that utilize Stargate tech instead of Robo
I suppose as band-aid detection it isn't bad, but in the end you still have to throw down a robotics facility if you ever end up having to use the oracle to detect, because that means that your opponent is planning on cloak play.

As to stargate openers, i never really am able to use detect on the oracle that in the capacity you're referring to anyway because since i am opening in such a fashion, i am obviously intending to harass with the oracles, hence draining their energy. Maybe at higher levels people stockpile energy early game with oracles, but i really doubt it.

When it comes down to it, giving the oracle detection isn't all that great in my mind because:
1) The oracles are far more often out harassing than sitting at your base or with your army
2) Due to the high cost, you have to do damage with them, meaning that you cannot rely on them having energy to detect with.
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01/28/2013 10:08 AMPosted by zappy
Right, i want that too, but not on the oracle. I thought that was clear in the post you quoted, but i suppose it was not.


Where do you want it than?
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01/28/2013 10:20 AMPosted by zappy
I suppose as band-aid detection it isn't bad,
It isn't :P

01/28/2013 10:20 AMPosted by zappy
but in the end you still have to throw down a robotics facility if you ever end up having to use the oracle to detect, because that means that your opponent is planning on cloak play.
No, because if the opponent is only using DTs 1 at a time, or cloaked banshees 1 at a time or a max of two, you aren't going to need a robo. It is only if your opponent is trying to send 4-5 cloaked units at you to kill you that will need a robo. the Oracle provides temporary protection, but since that person used up so much gas to make so many banshees and DTs, you make the smart choice and NOT build a second (or 3rd) Oracle, and get a Robo and observers that are exponentially cheaper, gas-wise = you do a counterattack after you kill his crap and you win the game.

As to stargate openers, i never really am able to use detect on the oracle that in the capacity you're referring to anyway because since i am opening in such a fashion, i am obviously intending to harass with the oracles, hence draining their energy. Maybe at higher levels people stockpile energy early game with oracles, but i really doubt it.
They do.

You can use this in PvZ. Open 1 stargate Void Ray/Oracle after FFE, followed by 2nd stargate, then use the 1-2 Oracles purely for scouting and revealing, and using them to kill drones and Zerglings wherever the Zerg leaves holes (i.e. no spores and/or queens at a base), then the Oracles are used all game long as a scouting tool and emergency detection against someone who decides to go Swarm Hosts.

It is very APM intensive, obviously, but it has its uses this way, and at pro-level, you can only imagine how wicked Oracles will be in this state. They are in the right spot now, with detection on them. MS Core detection was flawed as it was SUPER-restrictive on strategic choices for the opponents who wanted to use cloaked unit harass. Oracles are usually later, and there is a window where a cloaked unit can pay for its cost in damage, whereas with MS Core detection, cloak was a dead tech for the most part.

When it comes down to it, giving the oracle detection isn't all that great in my mind because:
1) The oracles are far more often out harassing than sitting at your base or with your army
2) Due to the high cost, you have to do damage with them, meaning that you cannot rely on them having energy to detect with.
This is because you are ONLY using Oracles offensively and not DEFENSIVELY. Maybe you aren't at the level where you can use them in any other way, but that does not justify writing off the ability on this unit without looking at its benefits for other user types.

By using it the way I mentioned before, you can basically tech up faster to Templar and/or Fleet beacon tech, or you can take a faster 3rd or 4th against Zerg because the Oracle revealed X about the Zerg's army positioning, or that the Zerg is still just droning and teching to Hive on 3 base (which is becoming more common now).

I recommend you examine ALL sides of the issue before judging. Oracles with detection are actually a good thing because it gives players like you the FLEXIBILITY to choose to have SOME detection at the appropriate time while using it more primarily for doing some harass (and teaches you not to over-commit), and it gives players like me a more defensive choice to use Oracles because I can still use them vs a 2 base swarm-host all-in and win with my 2 stargate VR production while still using them as a very good army and tech scouting tool to allow me to be as greedy or conservative as I want to be with my tech choices or economy.

More choice is better than less, and Oracles with detection offer MORE choices :)
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01/27/2013 06:45 PMPosted by Zakarious
Cannons.
There was a very long thread of debate on this subject and the short of it is that cannons don't work. It is impossible without a wall-off (which is stupid against Terran to stop a widow mine from walking in to your base and getting free kills with little investment from the Terran.
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This is because you are ONLY using Oracles offensively and not DEFENSIVELY. Maybe you aren't at the level where you can use them in any other way, but that does not justify writing off the ability on this unit without looking at its benefits for other user types.
Hmmm, the problem could be with me, but how would i justify the relatively expensive oracle if i only have it sit at home in the case that i might get attacked by a narrow range of units?
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01/28/2013 12:06 PMPosted by zappy
Hmmm, the problem could be with me, but how would i justify the relatively expensive oracle if i only have it sit at home in the case that i might get attacked by a narrow range of units?
The fact that Oracles can be used offensively is your asset. you show them the Oracle, and the opponent HAS to build static defenses, or get vikings or place 2 stalkers semi-permanently at each mineral line, and force the other player to not attack. That buys you time, and it puts the opponent in a position where they risk taking immense damage by not getting defenses, and attack to kill you, or they play it safe. 90% of the time, they'll play it safe with Queens/Spores, Turrets or viking/marine, stalkers and later cannons.

You don't have to do direct damage; all you have to do is show them you have 1-2 Oracles and that's threat enough. You may lose to someone who knows that you will not attack/harass, because he sees you tech up or have no defenses at your front, but usually when you're using Oracles defensively, you're backing them up with some other tech unit like a Void Ray, or you're getting a bunch of gates to protect your expansion. Of you're being offensive with Oracles, you're going to use them purely to DO damage as quickly as possible and will be rushing out 1 stargate THEN expand a little later, kind of like a DT Expand, but faster.
Edited by Zamara on 1/28/2013 12:13 PM PST
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