Team All-Inspiration is a unique and passionate collaboration of experienced and dedicated gamers. Our goal is to make a positive impact on the StarCraft II community by bridging the gap between macro and aggressive players. Regardless of your individual level and play style, all members are guaranteed a supportive learning environment, and access to help and advice from attentive coaches and team-mates. It is not only an opportunity to improve alongside some of the most creative and considerate people in Starcraft, but also an opportunity to get involved in the production and distribution of quality strategic content.
Stream Video: TangSC’s Drop-Style ZvP (Heart of the Swarm)
(Click on any image to view on Stream)
The fun begins with an early multi-pronged drop, Zerglings in the main…
Banelings at the expansion…
Followed up by 12 Mutalisks to kill Probes / Deny Protoss from pushing while droning and teching…
And finally a 4-Base Roach-Max style with Upgrades (Hydralisks Optional)
Zerg vs Zerg: Defensive Maneuvers
I received a special request from a good friend asking me to produce a guide on defensive tactics for Zerg vs Zerg, so here we are! In my opinion, there are few things more important in SC2 than keeping your composure during less-than-ideal situations, and I actually think that defending all-ins is one of the best ways to improve in situational micro – assuming you can keep your cool.
I’ve lost more games than I can count to early aggression, but I always play it out to the bitter end. So even if you think you’re way behind and doomed, practice setting up the best defense / engagements that you can. You might be surprised to find yourself pulling out of some pretty dire spots. So the next time someone cheeses you, get those angry thoughts out of your head, and focus on the task at hand – you will be the better player for it.
The guide will feature my own games in HotS at the top-master level, but I hope others will contribute their own tactics / replays / advice in the comments.
Click Here to view the full guide on Team Liquid.
Click Here to view the 30 minute Tutorial Video.
Roach-Ling Revisited ZvP (HotS)
Don’t worry Zergs, because Roaches are still good in ZvP! Yes Mothership cores are annoying, and sure Sky-Toss is a little scary, but the new Hydralisk buffs and the Viper complete a well-rounded late-game.
Never give up, never surrender (Pt1): ZvZ Nydus + Luck
Click Here to view this Stream Video.
Builds all have different steps, and when some of those steps go wrong, you may find yourself far behind and in need of some “desperation tactics.” So many players get discouraged in-game when they’re behind, and they focus on thoughts like “Why did I do that?” instead of “How can I still kill this guy’s base?!”
I highly recommend pressing your games a little further, even if you think you’re almost surely doomed, because it improves your mindset and ability to focus under emotional stress. And who knows? You might just squeeze a victory out of a a seemingly impossible situation.
Tang Two-Minute Tutorial: Holding 2 Proxy Barracks
These proxy-barracks bunker rushes can be tough to deal with when you Hatch-first, because the pool isn’t done yet so you can’t rely on Spines and Lings. It’s important to pull all your workers ASAP (don’t continue mining gas or minerals), and start attacking his SCVs and Marines. The absolute first-priority against a bunker rush is building your overlord on 16-17 supply. So often, in the heat of the moment, players forget the Overlord that would allow them to build the crucial Zerglings, and it is game lost if you forget it.
With your initial 16~ Drones, you have two goals: 1)Stop the bunker from completing, 2) Buy time for your Pool. Remember: Drones are strong! Think of them as Zerglings and forget about mining time – that’s not important. What’s important is keeping your Drones alive, so all of your focus should be on engagements. Pull your weakened Drones away, focus fire each individual Marines with 4-5 Drones. Even get 5-6 Drones attacking the actual bunker as soon as it gets started, do whatever it takes to stop the bunker and buy time to get a few sets of Zerglings out. Once Lings finish, you can engage (ideally surround) with Drones and Lings to crush his all-in.
In this tutorial, there are a few key thing to note. First, at 3:20 in-game time, a Marine arrives at my base which means 100% that he has proxied, so every single Drone is pulled to defend. At 3:40, the Drones are split – 6 attack the bunker, 5 attack the Marine running to the right, and 5 attack the newly-spawning Marines on the left. At 3:50, the pool finishes so I make sure to start the Lings that I can (only 2 sets, but that’s ok). The Drones continue to chase the Marines off-creep, and that’s fine as long as the Marines are split up. If he has 3-4 Marines, he can do the shoot-move “kiting” micro and I wouldn’t chase him like this. But if he only has individual Marines, your Drones can be out for blood. At 4:15, the Lings were coming out so I pulled all the workers back home. I wanted to group up with my Lings so that I could engage together – also bought me a bit of time to mine out a few minerals. 4:20 was the final, crucial engagement. With all the Lings and Drones selected, I right-clicked the mineral patches far away so that the Drones go right through whatever is in their way. This allowed me to get a nice surround and clean up the SCVs and Marines.
Click Here to view this Stream Tutorial.
The basic concept behind Drop-Style is a multi-pronged Zergling/Baneling drop at 8:15 that allows you to be the first aggressor against Protoss who Nexus-First, FFE, or 1-Gate Expand. I will freely admit that years ago when I first devised this build, it was intended to be an all-in and I used to go for the jugular by streaming Lings and Banelings relentlessly. But as I practiced more, I gradually refined the timings, and found that the initial investment of the drop only delays macro by about 2 minutes. That means you can still max out with roaches by 13 minutes! It can absolutely be a stepping-stone into the midgame, because you can use that aggression, scouting information, and map-control to transition in a number of ways (Mutalisks, Hydralisk Doom-Drops, Roach Max-Outs).
The thing that Zergs need to realize about 2-Base Protoss timings is that they cannot reproduce nearly as quickly as you. So if you’re baiting forcefields and trading armies (even inefficiently), and Protoss isn’t killing your Production/Drones, you can eventually get a better engagement against his “deathball”.
In this HotS game, Protoss goes for a scary 2-base Colossus/Stalker/Sentry timing. Zerg moves out with a big Roach army expecting to pressure the third, and is surprised to see such a scary Sentry/Stalker count. It’s an impenetrable army of Aiur that even max-roaches can’t engage head-on. But there are two distinct advantages for the Zerg player in this position:
1) Higher Production Capabilities – With 4-5 Hatcheries and an optimally-saturated 3-base economy (60-66 Drones), you can seriously reproduce FAST – This means you can afford lose tons of units on your opponent’s side of the map, or even mid-map, assuming that you inject frequently, and inject your macro hatch when your Queens reach 50 Energy. You can’t pull back and sit with a Roach army, you must be multitasking mid-field! Think of your Protoss opponent on two-bases: He’s mining minerals from 16 mineral patches, you’re mining from 24. The longer the game goes on, the more it favours the Zerg who will mine more overall resources every second, but you must find the time to keep your larva and inject-energy low.
2) Fast-Moving Army – The swift and agile Roach-Ling composition – with double-speed upgrades, of course – makes it possible for you to do what you need to do, and that is engage as far out on the map as possible, baiting forcefields, picking off units (ideally focusing down a few Sentries with packs of Roaches), and threatening the counter-attack. This stage of the game is a bit of a balancing act: you want to engage out on the map while avoiding a full-on engagement against an army with lots of Sentry energy; you actually want to lose units but you don’t want to go much below 160 supply; you want dart forward too bait forcefields without getting so close as to risk a large portion of your army being trapped by forcefields.
Always remember that you really want to keep your Hatcheries/Queens/Drones alive, so you really don’t want to be playing this passive/defensive – if you can keep your opponent on his side of the map by counter-attacking, you can do damage to his infrastructure and buy more time to rebuild your army. These games are always scary, and it can be so frustrating to get force fielded to pieces and steadily lose big packs of your units, but it’s important to keep your composure and evaluate what options you have left. Never leave a game before one last hooo-raaa!
Here’s another quick game, I went for 15Pool/15Gas/17Hatch, opponent goes for 6Pool full-commitment. Steps include starting an Overlord, removing from gas. When Pool finishes start at least 1 Spine/Queen/Zerglings. With Pool-first builds, it’s generally best to run with your Drones until Zerglings come out. Then with the engagement, you need to be careful to engage in the right concave, and target his high-dps units.
Also, don’t get stuck losing your last drone when you’re at 40 Minerals!
Click Here to view this Stream Tutorial.