WARNING: The following chronicles how I got into SC and my journey this far. Its long. Enter at your own risk. If you're lookin for the good stuff, skip to the pictures.
My BW journey began seriously about a year and a half ago. I had of course played the game before (campaign with every cheat known to man type stuff)but decided to reinstall it one day when I was bored back in like Aug 09'. I didnt really want to play vs computers so I read about where to play online. Enter ICCUP.
From my first two games I quickly learned that everyone on ICC uses resource hacks and that my one base 50 cannons -> carrier strategy is inadequate, so I find liquipedia (or maybe just on TL) a build for each matchup, and I heard it mentioned that knowing builds and having solid play could get you to D+/C-. So i learned a build and practiced a bit and a short while later me and some friends got together for some SC LANing. Long story short, I couldn't really beat them (no scouting, ZERO macro, no understanding of MU, etc. I knew in PvT that i should do 8 pylon 10 gate 11 gas 13 core 15 pylon. Thats it. Taking my nat at 100 seemed reasonable enough. So after I got brutally owned especially after some smack talk of how I would beat them I decided I wanted to get alot better (the game was still really fun).
Around that time I found TL. I started to read a little bit and learn a bit more about the matchups. I continued to play on ICCup, but with my no macro and refusal to hunt for terrible D- (e didnt exist) I went 2-89 my first season (my two wins were DT's where opponent had no detection)Around beginning of 2010 I came across an article that basically explained the most fundamental things, namely the importance of macro and how having those could get you to D+ or C-.
So, I embarked upon the quest for macro. I played about 200 games vs the CPU with the commandments. Always make probes. Keep your gates producing. Expand correctly/pylons on time/sufficient gateways. One took precedence over 2 and 2 again over 3. I wasn't allowed to do anything else if i wasn't making probes. It was a struggle but by the end of those games I could keep my money around 500 or less left to my own devices and I had about 120 APM now (up from 25 before). However, when I went ti play online again it became obvious that I couldn't really manage my army and maintain that focus, so I again played games where I focused on maintain macro but also moving my army around as much as possible. After another 50 CPU games i had a feel for it and could somewhat defend and maintain macro and I would get around 150-200 APM depending on game length.
I was still pretty bad though, this style had made me absurdly passive, I had zero game sense, and no concept of positioning or anything of the sort. But I could hold D rank. To me getting out of D- is a huge jump, but its also one you can make extremely fast with correct practice of the important things. I didn't play a whole lot the rest of the semester though so I stayed stagnant.
A little later in the semester I discovered TSL. I was blown away. The matches were amazingly fun to watch, micro was crisp, and the skill was impressive. I got really into the BW scene pretty much with/after TSL. I'd seen how awesome it was. Wasn't long after TSL until I started really watching proleague regularly and was again blown away, as Korean play was on a whole nother plane from foreigner play.
SC2's arrival saddened me though because of how quickly it snatched the life away from the BW foriegn scene and how most of the TL community's focus shifted completely and BW became a footnote. I had nothing against SC2, but as someone who as just began to appreciate BW and TL for what it really was I was bitter at having alot of it snatched away. In fact I even ended up drifting away from BW over the summer playing more SC2 than BW because there was a much more vibrant community feel.
Didn't take me long though to decide that SC2 community felt too big and too impersonal for me, and that I found BW as both a game a spectator sport far more fun and fascinating. While I enjoy some games of SC2 here and there, I'm continually drawn back to BW. I just happen to like it more. Once I saw that BW wasn't going to collapse in Korea (the match-fixing + lawsuit sure scared the shit out of me though), and that there is still an awesome community of close nit BW players, I was able to put aside my bitterness for SC2 and embrace the new reality. SC2 may be the new game on the block, and it certainly draws people into the community and can only be good for e-sports. I was threatened by it at first but BW is fine: it's going strong in Korea, there is close knit foreign group on TL and that there is a resurgence of BW streamers have all convinced me of the games health.
BW people stop hating on SC2. SC2 people stop hating on BW. It just ain't necessary; and doing so divides the community and drags it down as a whole.
Well that got a little off topic but it was an important issue for me to discuss my experiences and get that monkey off my back. I really was extremely bitter for quite some time.
Anyway, enter fall of 2010. I start playing a little more. Started to work on understanding the game as a whole, especially after Ver's truly outstanding guide. Played a ton on gameranger though, which is like 85% E-, 10% D-, and 5% D-C; so most of my games weren't super helpful for getting betterm though I did get used to alot of wierd as hell (read: awful) builds and i developed my multitasking a little more. By Christmas break it was obvious I wasn't going to get much better playing on gameranger. So i switched and started playing primarily ICCup and only playing known D or better players on GR.
And here I am now. I've improved quite a bit in the last two months. My understanding of the basic concepts like positing, threat, timings, are notably improved (but still bad lol). My macro is so hit and miss. Some games, its really good. I'll have games where I barely touch 500 minerals at any point in the mid and lategame. Then I have games where I try to build pylons but let go of shift too soon, only to find out 1 minute later that I have been supply blocked the whole time and have 1.5k minerals of 2 base. Or I forget to add gates. Those seem to be the main ways I get shitty macro. Most of the time my production rounds are reasonably crisp and my probe production is usually some where between okay and reasonably good. But, it seems I am now able to do often enough, well enough, to get to D+.
WOW...that got long. Like really long, for those of you that read it hopefully it wasn't too terrible
Of course, since this is a rank up blog it wouldn't be complete with out le battle report.
The noble protoss hero spawns top left
The evil terran opponent spawns top right
Everything normal here
Wow. I is sux. Choke all day.
The next Jaehoon?
3 guys on gas. 2 factory terrifies me.
Seriously, I wish i knew how to block the ramp with a zealot. It's like playing the damn lotto.
Yep. D+ and still don't know how to block ramp with 1 zealot
2 gate goon obs expand after 6 goons usually keeps my safe from 2 fact. Usually. Overkill in this case though cause its not two fact.
Playin it safe
Siege Tanks > Dragoon
Man, I hate vultures. Is there a more annoying unit that the vulture? (Okay, maybe DT's if your terran. or Zerg)
Something is wrong with this picture...
Only lost like 4 probes for 5 or 6 vultures, not the end of the world, especially since...
Here comes le terran timing attack!
Terran was nice here and decided to push very slowly. Whats scary is when they have enough to keep on marching. And know it.
Why so friendly?
3.5 ctrl group Protoss army vs 12 tanks; I got dis!
Victory, sweet victory!!
Steamrolled -> D+!!!
Really felt great to graduate from the D rank, I guess its like my certificate of having the most basic RTS concepts down.
As good as D+ felt though, C- gonna feel that much better. Btw, I'm comin for ya Mr. Yellow Rank, you best be scared.