Sunday, May 30, 2010

#8 - StarCast: "Christmas comes early with an extra week of beta"

SC2 beta gets extended for another week June 7th specifically
No battlenet chat rooms, SC2 is region locked, and no LAN
Blizzard strikes a deal with a new broadcast company for e-sports in Korea
Kyle plays some Custom Maps
3v3 and 4v4

David covers High Templars, Archons, Psionic Storm use, and Colossi in his segment this week.
Joel Duggan shows a "whole lotta love" for the Marauder in his Terran segment
Josh from Seattle writes in with an extensive Zerg strat (read below)

*Josh's Zerg Tips
Creep Advancing
Creep Tumors are important.  Creep not only reduces the time it takes to get your units in a forward position, but it also provides map vision as well.  Considering how invaluable map intel is in SC2 and the fact that all creep advancement will cost you is attention and some energy from your Queen, this is an approach that should be used in every match.  Practice it until it becomes an automatic command you issue every game.

Burrow can save lives!
Any player worth his salt is going to send an auxiliary force at your money line.  Since its usually a suicide squad (if land based), they are unlikely to include detection with that group.  This obviously isn't all that useful against Terran due to Scan, but against Zerg and Protoss, it can usually save you a lot of grief the first time you get caught like this.

NEVER stop Spitting!
Being Zerg, your goal is to overrun your opponent with mass units with superior macro as early as possible.  After you have gotten good at producing enough drones and expanding, the surefire way to further improve your massing capacity is to practice Queen spitting throughout the entire match.  It doesnt matter if you are control capped, light on minerals, or whatever, just keep spitting as often as possible.  The main point to consider is that larva do not expire as long as they are on creep, so you need to constantly be producing larva throughout the match nonstop.  This also includes expansions as well!
The more larva you have at your bases, the easier it will be to stay at control capacity throughout the match, which as zerg, is precisely what you need to do to win.  Having a flood of larva at your disposal with a strong economy means that you will be able to bounce back from engagements faster than your opponents.
Say for example you and an opponent trade forces in the middle of the map... you look back at your bases and you are sitting on 8 - 10 larva at each hatchery... within 30 seconds of both players losing most of their units, you could have 60 zerglings as a follow up force to wreck any (now undefended) expansions, or just go straight for their main money line.
Numbers account for everything as zerg, and Queen spitting is the last piece of the great zerg macro machine... just after drone production and expanding of course.

Tech Switching
This is somewhat related to Larva production.  Even if you don't think you will need a particular unit, diversify your military buildings, because one of the best things Zerg can do is instantly respond with something unexpected.  Having the ability to start with one strategy and instantly flip to another is a great advantage that is not shared by the other races.  This capacity to switch production on the fly will keep your opponent guessing and can possibly be used to exploit a discovered weakness.
This can be explored in greater depth when one gets into a meta game conversation about mid game (trying to keep the email brief as is).  So, in summary tech switching is one of the advantages zerg inherently has to take advantage of, as their units don't have the utility that Terran and Protoss do, so use it as needed!

Infestor Importance
Infestors are the backbone of mid and late game play.  Get them early so they are full on energy when you engage.  Without a doubt Fungal Growth is the greatest equalizer Zerg has against Colossi and massed Siege tanks.  Fungal Growth will also work well against Medivacs, as it not only stuns the Medivac, but all the units beneath it.  Infestors are the best answer Zerg has to AoE damage and Capital Ships, hands down.