The Macro-Structure of an Opening Build
One of the keys to being successful in StarCraft is planning. One of the best ways to plan is to refine your build order timings and I want to stress that although we’ll be looking at a Zerg build, the key concepts can be applied to the game play of any the races. The reason this is such a relevant concept for all players is simple: I’m going to explain the macro-structure of the build – how all the pieces come together, which is not often studied in great detail but is, in my experience, incredibly important to success on the Starcraft II battlefield.
Many times when someone learns a build, they’ll quickly look at the food timings and focus primarily on controlling their units. In reality, there is much more to a build than just food-relative timings. And you would think that it would make a lot more sense to start with the little pieces – to start with the micro, unit control, hotkeys, and build up and build up and then talk about the macro-structure. But that’s actually backwards of what we need to do. And the reason is the large-scale structure of the build is WAY more important than any of the little things – the little things will come when the structure is there. How you organize your play is going to determine to a large degree whether your play is effective.
So, I’m going to remind you of that annoying advice that you probably got from your 5th or 6th grade English teacher when you first started essay writing – and that’s “first you have to have an outline, then you have to have a rough draft, then you have to have a final draft, then you have to polish it.” And you know, this advice is pretty much right in SC2 as well. However, most people don’t work this way, most of my students do not sit down and first sketch an outline of a build, and then practice, and then make some alterations, and then practice, and then make a final build order. What they do is open a game and start playing. However, if you’re dedicated to learning and perfecting a build, this isn’t the optimal way to proceed. Instead, the following steps should be utilized when trying to learn a new build:
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