I'm planning to start writing about my ladder experiences, I think. I keep thinking that I want to do something like this, and I kind of used to. I've been playing Starcraft 2 since it retailed, and in some efforts to get my friends to play, I'd write emails and send replays of my games out. Now, maybe I'll start writing blog entries. I don't know if I want to, because I feel like I should be playing, as I'm not Master League, yet, but there are some times that I have access to a computer and can't play; I figure these are the times I shall try to create these blog posts. Hopefully these blog entries serve to entertain, ingratiate myself into the community a slight bit, help us all have good discourse about Starcraft 2, and allows us to take our ideas and skills to higher planes (i.e. become better gamers [we all know where we've heard that before]). I'm doing this for fun, so I hope that is what this read always provides you.
My name is Inertiaddict. I am 30 and I live in New York. Nice to meet you. I have always played video games of almost any type and for all systems. I'm better than average, but still nothing special compared to pro's, semi-pro's, or speed runners. I play Starcraft 2 for fun and I have followed it in esports since it retailed.
I play Terran for a couple reasons that I'll get into later in this post and in subsequent ones. I skipped my Practice League matches and landed on my ass directly in Bronze League. It was clear to me right away that I could never be extremely good because I have a problem with constant SCV production. I've gotten a lot better at it, but I do feel that that is my heroic flaw. I space out sometimes, too. That leads to supply capping issues, as well. I try hard, but also just can't help it to a certain extent. I've never given up on my quest to get better and I don't plan to, especially with expansion packs on the way [as scary as HotS looks], and by watching progamer streams and tournaments, I've clawed my way up to Diamond League. I'm really a Platinum League player at the moment, though. I've hit a small slump because it's difficult for me to play every day. I feel this game does somewhat call for that.
Moving on, I do stream, and I would love it if you came and checked me out, but unfortunately, it might make you worse, lol. I play the game because I enjoy it. I really do love Starcraft 2. I'm grateful for its inception. You'll notice I haven't mentioned its predecessors, Starcraft and Brood War. Well, I have some Starcraft stories to tell you, but some of them don't actually involve playing the game (and they're for another time that WILL come). I was terrible at the original Starcraft, and I never played Brood War, even though I own it and I have respect for it. This'll probably work out better if you don't judge me on that. We can't all be at the party on time, but I assure, I'm not gay, sorry. There's more to my story, but I'm trying not to just dump a wall of text down as my first blog post in what I hope to be a continual effort on my part (I think the idea is to keep you wanting more throughout, right? I'm trying...).
I like philosophy, like really, and I have philosophies by which I live. I have a philosophy towards Starcraft 2. Routine exposure and steady practice makes a person better at something. Now, we can't be hasty, meaning that you just can't rush some things, and we can't all be prodigies. Some of us are going to have to work our way up from a very dark and deep place. I've done that. I would have loved an easier path, such as just naturally being great at this game, but alas, I am not, so it's been a struggle reaching each rung.
My philosophy is to play the game, because I love it for its complexity and thoughtfulness, and as I develop as a player, to respect and appreciate the growth that has taken place as a result of it. I don't play to have fun, I play to improve and I reflect on that process as being fun, even though some nights I want to smash my head through a wall with frustration.
I'm always manner and I don't cheese. I don't get anything out of being BM to other people. I believe that for the most part, you get back what you put out. True or not, I don't want to be a member of a stuck up community and part of the reason that this game sucks to play. I always "gl hf", or "gl hf gg", or "hey, gl hf", etc. and I always "gg" out, whether the guy/girl is a tool, or cheesy or whatever. If you're Terran, I'll write, "Good luck and have fun, fellow Terran!". That's just me. I don't understand the people who say rude things to you, with you already ignored. That behavior is pure trash. I also take screen shots of BM and post it to an album that I have on Facebook, so either way, I am enjoying myself and getting something out of this.
If I find that I am just off one day, or I'm not happy with what I'm doing in the game then I'll take some time off and watch streams, while I look for something that I like. I think you'll get a sense of all this as we spend time together. Let's get to the match ups. I play them all somewhat similarly, which I like and think helps.
I try to hold the Xel'Naga Watchtowers. I know that if I don't see anything for awhile, that perhaps I should expect drop play from my opponent. I don't so a great job of keeping my eye on the Mini-Map though. There's a discrepancy between knowing what I should be doing and actually doing it properly and on time. I'm a work in progress.
Ok, this match up for me has always been a little troubling, even when Terran was strong, lol. I hate Banelings, I dislike Mutas, and Infestors are scare me. I play a Bio style with Medivacs, and eventually I'll add tanks, then realize I should have added Thors (depends slightly on their army composition, of course). I usually get three bases and the fourth started, 3/3 Bio upgrades, 2 Attack on the Vehicles, and either I win at this point or I've already been roflstomped. It really can be either, and I find it all depends on how early the Baneling Nest gets put down. If it's early, I'm screwed and if it's late or not at all, I typically can pull the win out.
I 1 Rax expo into 3 Rax total (2 Reactors and one Tech Lab - Stim first, Combat Shields second), followed by double gas**, to get a Factory moving towards a Starport for Medivacs. After that, I'll get the Tanks or Thors. It's quite standard, as all my match ups are. I scout on 14. If they have an extractor, I make 2 bunkers at the front. If they don't have extractors, then I gear up to make a big 2 base attack, when I take my third and begin upgrades across the board while sustaining unit production.
As I said, if the Baneling Nest is early, it's trouble, because I move out with all the marines I could make, plus my first Marauder (he takes the lead). I can tank a Spine and Queen with him, while the marines pick off drones if they're pulled and Overlords. I retreat at some point, hopefully. I try not to over commit. I keep the pressure up all game long by keeping my Marauders in front and Medivacs over there heads. If I have Marines left after the engagement, I generally feel very confident that I'm going to take the match. If they transition into Infestors I stick with Tanks, and if they go anything else, I switch to Vikings (I can usually retain my Medivacs well enough or put down a second Starport) and Thors.
**Note about the double gas: I know that I write that I get the Tech Lab and the Reactors. This happens before I put down the Factory. So, I put down all the Rax, then I double gas, then I get the Tech Lab with Stim, then the Reactors then the Factory... Like anyone else, right? But I wanted to make it clear. Same with the TvP match up, which is next. One Tech Lab, the second and the Reactor come slightly later, but again, before the Factory (I have experimented with an early Factory, but the infrastructure is better to get than the tech, I have found). TvT is slightly different, as I go for an expand 1/1/1.
TvZ Replay Pack:
I do the same 1 Rax expo into 3 Rax total (2 Tech Labs and one Reactor - Stim and Concussive Shells together, with Combat Shields afterwards), followed by double gas, to get a Factory moving towards a Starport for Medivacs. I used to try to push out with a small force before the Medivacs, but I don't always feel comfortable doing so. I try to poke a little, though and kill some things, because I feel like if they defend the Medivac drop and I haven't done damage before it, then I lose.
I suck with Ghosts. I barely make them. I don't have the coordination to have them in front, hit the EMP's then cloak or whatever (who can afford all this?) while Stimming my Bio army and splitting, or spreading. I know how to fight, I just sometimes can't do it all. I watch Polt play and he doesn't make Ghosts, so I cling to the vestige that I don't either.
I will say though that I have to do damage at some point, or I'm toast. I think that's the project of playing Terran though. The toughest part of this match up for my is identifying that he's going HT early, or Colossi, and having the Vikings in place or the micro needed to beg and dodge Storm. As long as I'm ready for the right one and I;m cognizant of my army, I can edge out the victory.
I'm actually pretty good at seeing Observers. I try to Scan and snipe them. I have to admit, I still out right loose to DT's if I don't expect them, and I usually don't see the Dark Shrine until the last possible second. Getting the Engineering Bay down at a safe time is something I try to be very aware of. I also try to keep an eye on the mimi-map for War Prisms, but I've been known to not spot those very well.
TvP Replay Pack:
This match up is unlike the other two, in that I go for the Factory and Starport in this match up and not the 3 Rax. I used to go for the Rax, but I like Tanks in this match up more, so I make them and try not to die to heavy Marine/Marauder pressure, a 1 base Siege push, or a Cloaked Banshee.
Beyond that, I know it's a game of Tanks and positioning, so I try to win it. I find that this is the match up I am trying to play defensively, whereas the other two match ups, I feel that I need to go in for the kill. I try to macro and take my third base and since it's a mirror match up, I just worry about what I'm doing more than what they're doing. I'm generalizing a little here, but I plant a Marine at their third so I know whether or not they're macroing or just building up for a 1 to 2 base all in or something.
I found with Bio, that I couldn't win straight up fights or hold ground and that was a cause of concern for me. I love the Siege Tank as a unit and I pretty much let it shine in all of its glory in this match up. I find Marauders work for me better in the other match ups. Marauders are good against Mech in TvT, but otherwise, Jinro told me not to make them, so I typically don't.
I also am not very fond of Hellions, in general. I just don't care for them that much. They don't excite me very much, but I'll admit, with Blue Flame they're good to have against Marines (depending), Zerglings (pretty much always), and Zealots (that don't have Charge).
TvT Replay Pack:
So, this is pretty much the state of my game, at the moment. I'll be writing more in the future to expand on each of these topics, so really, this was just meant to wet the palette, so to speak.
Thanks for reading, thanks for watching my stream or any VOD's if you do, and good luck in all your games and your Ladder experiences.
Thank you, Team Liquid, for the blog space, and everything else you do.
Thank you to all the Terran players that have been big inspirations to me:
I've watched these players a lot, and modded for some of them on their streams. I greatly appreciate the examples that they've set forth in their dedication to excellence. I am their humble servant and herald. I've had a lesson from some of them and some of them have taken personal time to help me. I'll never forget their kindness and generosity. I give it back in to the scene as best I can.
Thanks, we'll do this again soon after I play more games. Please feel free to comment or critique. I only hope that it's constructive and somewhat positive.