Ladder Armies?

Co-op Missions Discussion
Here's an idle question: what do you think it would be like to play as a standard Terran, Protoss, or Zerg army in the co-op missions? Would the lack of powerful commander abilities sink you, or would the variety of units you can build make up for it?

I'll bet the folks here calling out for something harder than Brutal would handle it just fine. I'd probably flounder at first, honestly.
I question if it would even be possible without at least some special boost. Amon regularly sends end game ladder armies at you in co-op and that's ignoring the hybrids and A.I micro allowing him to set up a dozen sentry forcefields at once.
I'd prefer the opposite really. PvP using commander armies instead of the generic racial armies.
05/25/2019 10:54 AMPosted by Durazno
Here's an idle question: what do you think it would be like to play as a standard Terran, Protoss, or Zerg army in the co-op missions? Would the lack of powerful commander abilities sink you, or would the variety of units you can build make up for it?

I'll bet the folks here calling out for something harder than Brutal would handle it just fine. I'd probably flounder at first, honestly.
Playing ladder Terran in co-op would be like playing a very gimped Raynor; no calldowns, no unit deployment anywhere, no special upgrades, no instant depots, no spamming of ground bio units. It would be similar for Zerg / Kerrigan and Protoss / Artanis. Sounds like a lot of fun, right?

One reason you play co-op is because it has overpowered units and abilities that are not available in ladder.
The Mission - "In Utter Darkness" was pretty hard. If someone can do it in Brutal, there is no reason they can't pull it off with Ladder Armies in Coop missions =)
Regular verses mode races would struggle in coop relative to coop commanders. The economies in coop are much smaller than in verses mode. The AI opponent also has “free” armies so the standard for coop is to defeat waves without losing anything. This is difficult without coop power level calldowns and top bars. You definitely can win a brutal coop map with regular verses mode races but it would be significantly more difficult.
Honestly, I would actually like it if they did make mostly Ladder armies as future commanders, at least in composition and options, rather than unit version strength, and I think the best way to go about that would be to put most of the commander's strength in a truly powerful hero unit that has all the strength, potentially with an extra calldown or two. By simply challenging oneself and keeping the hero unit back at base, one could try to use just Ladder units to clear missions.

At least for Terran, I could see that being Valerian, given how the Ladder arsenal has a rather widespread and versatile tech tree compared to the Terran Commanders we have currently. A mostly traditional army with Valerian in a Gorgon battlecruiser as a mighty hero unit, supported by all kinds of barrack, factory, or starport units. Could even build Academies to build and launch multiplayer strength nukes with Ghosts, which while lacking the strength of Heroic nuke options of other commanders, quantity is a quality all of its own.

It still kind of bugs me that we can't actually go for a Nuke heavy strat in Coop after all this time. You'd think by now we would have had at least one Terran who could just straight up build Ghost Academies/Spectre Ops and literally build and calldown a ton of nukes if you were so inclined.
The number of vespene geyser and mineral field in ladder game are at least ten times more than coop game. If they give us that number of mineral field, it is possible to play ladder faction in coop without problem.

To compare with coop commander while the ladder units are weaker individually, there are much more unit types for each faction and each of this unit type are specialized which means although their stats are lower than coop units, they excel at their job (vs massive, vs light, vs armoured...) Zagara corruptors failed in coop and have to be changed in Zagara revamp because coop team did not understand this concept of specialised units. Specialised units are possible in ladder because you have every single types of unit to deal with every single enemy while Zagara have barely 5 combat unit types, putting a specialised corruptors that is strong vs massive means nothing.

Another thing to be considered would be the duration of the mission, ladder faction only come in power at 20th minutes while coop comms achieve this faster. If they have to deal with timed mission, ladder units may fail.

So it’s not that big of an issue having ladder vs hybrids. With a strong eco of ladder map, an army of specialised units and some way to get ladder faction into the game sooner to deal with timed objectives, it is entirely possible.
I had an idea similar to this a while back (didn't get received well lol). But some good ideas came from the conversation regarding how to amp a ladder army up to coop standards (just to make it playable), and it sounds like you might be interested in hearing them, so here's the link.

https://us.battle.net/forums/en/sc2/topic/20771337012
05/25/2019 08:05 PMPosted by SeaEmperor
The Mission - "In Utter Darkness" was pretty hard. If someone can do it in Brutal, there is no reason they can't pull it off with Ladder Armies in Coop missions =)

That was WoL beta protoss, most of those units were so broken then, your army there I would argue is significantly stronger than co-op Karax. plus the reinforcing units don’t cost supply, and a lot of them are carriers and void rays and immortals who don’t die, so you have effectively 250 army supply to work with.

I think that playing co-op with standard ladder armies, the diversity wouldn’t be what makes up for it. Being allowed to actually expand would. I frequently will have as many units killed in a 1v1 as in a co-op in the same amount of time. The only difference is that in the 1v1 I would also have that many units produced, whereas in co-op I have to try to do some weird 25 minute 2 base all-in-but-not-all-in-because-my-units-can’t-die.
If you watch any GSL, WESG, or WCS, the pro players all consistently do 1 of 2 things.

1) Expansion to 3rd and/or 4th by 10min.

2) Stay on 2 base for a timing push - to end the game in the next 3min.

Neither of these 2 are optional in Coop Mode. Obviously there aren't enough bases to expand to. And no player can hope to end any Coop map by massing units on 2 base then win said map within 3min (as objectives intrinsically prevent this).

Any advantage in unit composition would be made useless by the above two, unless you can make them for really cheap and fast (but that wouldn't be ladder anymore, would it).
Thanks for the link, Volsarex. I see this isn't a new thought!

And yeah, it looks like I was underestimating how hard doing this with ladder would be, at least with the current rate of Amon attacks and opportunities to expand. I guess I've been playing co-op so much that I forgot what the other modes were like.
05/25/2019 08:36 PMPosted by Kirena
Honestly, I would actually like it if they did make mostly Ladder armies as future commanders, at least in composition and options, rather than unit version strength, and I think the best way to go about that would be to put most of the commander's strength in a truly powerful hero unit that has all the strength, potentially with an extra calldown or two. By simply challenging oneself and keeping the hero unit back at base, one could try to use just Ladder units to clear missions.

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Aren't you basically just decribing Kerrigan, Alarak, and Nova with more supply?

However, maybe hero centric commanders in the future would be good. The Selendis Mothership Hero is a popular concept.

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