Anyway, I've found the time to play the occasional Broodwar binge session. So the competition is a bit harder at the beginning of the season, but I really enjoy playing against better players. One of my first games was against a Korean who is currently 47-7 B-. I think it's pretty cool that a noob like me has a chance to play against vastly superior players occasionally. But then again, it's nice not to get absolutely raped every game too. On to the analysis...
(14)ZvZ: 6- 8 42.8%
(16)ZvP: 3-13 18.7%
( 9)ZvT: 3- 6 33.3%
(14)ZvZ: 6- 8 42.8%
(16)ZvP: 3-13 18.7%
( 9)ZvT: 3- 6 33.3%
ZvZ: That's right, an amazing 14 ZvZ's out of 39 games on ICCup. They were really fun, and my stats have shown for a quite a while that ZvZ is my best matchup (don't know if that's good or bad...). Well, I've gotten much better after this gauntlet of ZvZs. Two of my losses I don't really take seriously though, as I got screwed by the map. The first one, I played on Vampire, which I had never played on before, and I built my hatch blocking the choke (if you know the map you'll know what I mean). Little did I know that a hatch in the choke would be ling tight. So when my opponent's lings got to my base, I had to watch as he destroyed my hatch, as my lings couldn't defend, being trapped inside by the hatch! T'was gay. The other game was on Destination. I went for an early ling/lair build (which goes against my better judgment on that map), and when I told my lings to move to the bottom position, they just ran into a corner of my base. Wtf?
Anyway, strategy-wise, I've learned a couple things about ZvZ in these past games. First, if both players get lings at the same time, they tend to form a single-file line. There's a lot to be gained from just grabbing the front ones and running them back a bit, so that your lings will form a better arc when you meet his. That first ling battle can easily decide the game based on who gets a better arc when the lings engage.
Second thing I learned is that fast lair builds get owned by economy builds. Players who rely on getting mutas asap are basically beaten by 2 spore colonies. Placement is important though. One must go right next to the gas, while the other goes on the opposite side of your base. Also, make sure to place your buildings throughout the game with the idea in mind that you may need to defend them with spores. It's important that he can't snipe your gas or spire or drones. The counter, as the fast muta player, is to only make 1 or 2 mutas once you see the evo chamber going up, and instead expand. The two mutas can hunt ovies for a while. Also, you can start air armor really early. But expanding requires some lings to defend too, which is pretty costly with such a shitty economy. Overall though, I haven't had much success with the 9pool-lair type builds, and have been pretty much 12hatching most games. I haven't run into any 9pools yet though, so I'm interested to see if it's autolose for me, or if I can somehow pull out a win.
ZvP: I've been getting absolutely raped in ZvP lately. 2 or 3 games, I lost simply because he made a couple DTs, and walked them right into my base, and I had no overlords nearby! Noob mistake, but it's been quite a while since DTs have been a problem for me, so I got used to having my overlords watching his shit rather than my own.
Second problem is that my 3hatch muta into 5hatch hydra has been getting raped hardcore. This is in part due to the fact that I've been playing against better players than I played when I first started using the build, and these players scout and shit, and play safe against mutas. And in part it's due to my poor decision-making on what to do with my mutas. I need to keep in mind that if they get killed needlessly, that's 900/900 gone, and that's pretty much gg right there. Upon more thought, the only way mutas are gonna pay for themselves is if either
(a)he's not prepared and I kill a ton of probes, kill/chase away his corsairs, and possibly destroy his nexus or something, or
(b) I get at least a couple templar kills, maybe micro and kill a few probes, and shit on his zealots a bit, and force him to make archons to move out, by which time I need to have a hydra army.
Unfortunately, I don't think either of those are all that realistic.
Another problem with my ZvP is that I absolutely hate using lurkers in ZvP, because in the past they've NEVER been worth it. Of course, I was using them wrong. So I'm going to learn a couple more standard builds, 5hatch hydra-mutaswitch for one. I think if I learn to use lurkers the right way, I can do a lot better in ZvP.
ZvT: I'm so bad at ZvT. It's horrible. What really frustrates me is that I used to be better than I am now. I don't know what happened. Now, after the 9 mutas, I just fall apart. I used to be able to make it to defilers before I fell apart, at which point lucky defiler skirmishes could win me some games. But now, it's like ...ugh. I'm just disgusted at my lack of ability in ZvT. I've probably just been focusing too much on ZvP, ZvZ, and stopping mech gayness (which I'm a lot better at, but I still get out-macroed pretty easily).
So I guess I've just gotten a bit rusty as of late, and I need to practice more.
1. None here.
1. A couple ZvPs I played, my opponent used a strategy on Andromeda that totally owned me. He started with 2gate pressure against my 12hatch. I (for the first time ever, I might add) fended it off, but after which, he just blocked his ramp with the zealots he had made, expanded to the 1/2 base atop his ramp, and teched to sairs. I thought I had an advantage after defending his 2gate, but watching the replay, I was way behind, partially because I "overreacted" to his 2gate, and partially because he was able to expand safely to get a strong econ going. The thing is, had I made less lings or whatever, he could have just kept rallying his zeals to my base and run me over. So it seemed like I was forced to make a bunch of lings, then he just blocked his ramp and expoed to his 1/2 base, kind of doing a hybrid 2gate-expo-tech build. It was gay. How can I deal with this?
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I made several mistakes later in the game, like going mutas instead of lurkers, and suiciding my lings in his base. But honestly, by that time the game was pretty much over. His early game dominated me and that's what my question is focusing on.
1. When you play standard 3hatch muta, how many mutas do you make/how long do you keep pumping mutas? Do you just make 9 and go directly to lurker tech, or do you make 11, or do you keep reinforcing based on how much damage you think you'll be able to do?
2. When do you get your queens nest to start hive? Here's my current 3hatch muta build for ZvT:
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ZvT practice: 3hatch muta-lurk-defiler 1.2
-transfer 3 drones, make 6 lings and gas
-drone whore, making creep colonies only as needed,
using a ling scout to know when to morph sunks
-lair with first 100 gas
-2nd 100 gas ling speed, then get nat gas and pump some
-spire as soon as lair finishes
-use remaining larva for 3 overlords, some more lings,
and a few drones which should put you at 33 or 35 supply
-send out a drone to take 3rd
-when spire finishes, take 3rd and hatch 8/9 mutas
-make 2/3 more mutas as gas permits, then build
den and evo and build 2 more hatches in main/nat
for mass unit pumping,and also optionally replace
a few mutas as needed for effective harass
-when den/evo finish, get lurker tech and armor
-when lurker tech is half done, make 5/6 hydras
and send them where you want to morph them if needed
-after morphing hydras get queens nest, (second evo optional)
-when nest done, get hive
-obviously pump lurker/ling as needed, and send
a ling to every untaken expo if you haven't already
-when hive done, get defiler mound (optional: greater spire
into guardians with leftover mutas)
-when defiler mound done get consume
-when consume half done, make 2/3 defilers
Any suggestions? I believe this is referred to as a fast hive build. But that implies that there are slower hive builds, builds that survive on lair for much longer. How is Zerg supposed to survive on lair for so long? By the time mnm gets to 1/1 upgrades, you'd need mass lurkers and a flank to stop them, and even then you'll take heavy losses (my speculation of course). It doesn't seem like the queens nest/hive/defiler mound worth of minerals/gas would make that difference to me.
Those are some big questions; I hope I can get some responses on them.
As always, comments and constructive criticism welcome.