Monday, April 2, 2007

Reverting to Starcraft

So this weekend I ended up playing Starcraft: Broodwars and Warcraft 3: The Frozen Throne with my old lan party buddies. To say the least we have not lost our skills and it seems that I have even improved on Warcraft 3 yet I haven't played a strategy game for more than 10 minutes excluding of course Supreme Commander.

Starcraft was quite the game in its day and to this day it remains one of the best games out there, and whats better is it can run on almost any system to date. We even got it running on a 486 machine on time (we were bored).

Starcraft Strategy: I played as Terran first because everyone knows the best way to defeat a computer is to control a bottleneck that they can't cross. Keep in mind that I am not the best Starcraft player out there, we usually play against the computer AI. Keep in mind it is always a good thing to keep a squad of units that can attack land and air in your base and always remember to surround your perimeter with air and/or land defense depending on the map.

Terran Strategy:
The optimum Terran strategy is to wall off the entrance to your base with Supply Depots and put bunkers behind that with a few SCV's dedicated to repairs. This prevents all but ranged and flying units from hurting you too much. You may also want to park a few seige tanks at the entrance to give you that extra range and power. It gives you a bit of control over what you do. However, make sure you build up to the point that you have shuttles so you can get yourself out. Remember to surround your base with turrets and have a squad of goliaths ready to take out any stragglers.
Things to watch out for:
Seige Tanks - These Little bastards can take down your depots quickly, make sure you have some wraiths or battlecruisers ready to counter any seige attacks. You can also alternate two marines and two ghosts in the bunkers to help with this.
Zerglings - Zerglings are so small they can squeeze between your supply depots and get to the squishy little SCV's. Make sure you have an empty bunker away from the action to stuff your repair SCV's into.
Flying Units - Anything above the ground can cross into your base unhindered unless you pepper your area with turrets and keep a ground/air combat squad to defend yourself.
Reavers - Big AoE booms are bad for your supply depots and SCV's so watch for these scarab-carrying bastards.

Protoss Strategy:
I usually go with the Zealot/Dragoon method when I go with protoss. Fully upgraded Zealots are a force to be reckoned with. Remember to do all armor/weapon/shield upgrades and the speed boost. Always keep some Zealots and Dragoons ready at your base for defense and augment them with a battery and a few cannons as well. After I send in the Zealots and Dragoons I usually have a squad of Reavers air lifted in via a shuttle. I drop them in the enemy's production area and quickly take out all of their harvesters. Remember that Reavers cannot attack air! And you have to build scarabs to make them work, so don't forget to queue scarabs.
Things to watch out for:
Flying Units - Zealots are defenseless unless you have a few dragoons in the squad to help them with flying contraptions. Your Zealots will be picked off easily without some sort of help in this area.

Zerg Strategy:
Okay, I don't play zerg often but here's what I do. I usually go straight for Guardians/Mutalisks and keep a squad of Hydralisks on hand for base defense. At my entrance I keep sunken/spore colonies along with a few Lurkers scattered behind the colonies to add some extra power to defense.
Things to watch out for:
Flying Units - Guardians CANNOT attack air, only ground so they are vulnerable to all of the air-only attackers (Devourers for Zerg, Valkeries for Terran, Corsairs for Protoss). Make sure to keep some defenders with them, usually a squad or three of Mutalisks will make short work of any offending air traffic. Beware of Battlecruisers though, those bastards can take a beating.

General Things
One general thing to watch out for are Templars. Those fuckers are way overpowered, Psychic Storm is a bitch, Feedback sucks and Mind Control is not fun. PS is an AoE attack that damages all units, even those that are buried. FB is like Mana Burn in wow, it does damage based on how much energy you have stored, this can screw your battlecrusers. MC, as described below, gives you control of the target unit.

Protoss Note: Dark Archons are your friend, you can mind control an enemy harvester and get a whole new, or even all three races. If you're playing with friends have them send a basic builder into your base so you can take it over.

Warcraft 3 requires a little more from a computer but it is no less fun. I remember the days of playing Warcraft 2 endlessly. I would recommend to anyone that they pick up these two titles produced by the publisher that made everyone's favorite MMORPG World of Warcraft.

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