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    Multiplayer Guide by shockwave_xpow

    Version: 3.2 | Updated: 08/20/10 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    Revision: 2.0
    Author: Shockwave.xpow
    Email: shockwave.xpow@gmail.com
    Copyright: (c) 2010 shockwave.xpow - All rights reserved
    0. LEGAL INFORMATION                                               CH0
    All trademarks and copyrights contained in this document are owned by
    their respective trademark and copyright holders.  This document is
    protected by copyright law and international treaties.  This may be
    not be reproduced under any circumstances except for personal, private
    use. It may not be placed on any web site or otherwise distributed
    publicly without advance written permission. Use of this guide on any
    other web site or as a part of any public display is strictly
    prohibited, and a violation of copyright.
    If you wish to reproduce any or all of ths information, you must
    contact me via my email address above and request permission.
    Permission may not necessarily be granted, and non-response by me does
    not grant permission.
    VER. VERSION HISTORY                                               VER
    1.0: 8/1/2010
    2.0: 8/5/2010
    	 Added details to various sections based on feedback.
    	 Added more detail to Orlan portrait achievement.
    2.1: 8/11/2010
    	 Minor miscellaneous corrections.
    3.0: 8/13/2010
    	 Added a UI tricks section for each race.
    	 Added single player campaign section.
    	 Added Q&A section.
    3.1: 8/20/2010
    	 Added more detail to single player section.
    	 Miscellaneous minor corrections.
    	 Added more UI tricks.
    3.2: 8/25/2010
         Miscellaneous corrections to single player campaign.
         Added more UI tricks.
         Added more resources.
    TOC. TABLE OF CONTENTS                                             CHT
    0.     LEGAL INFORMATION              CH0
    VER    VERSION HISTORY                VER
    TOC.   TABLE OF CONTENTS              CHT
    I.     INTRODUCTION                   CH1
     A.    ABOUT THE AUTHOR               CH1_A
     B.    WHAT TO EXPECT                 CH1_B
    II.    OVERVIEW                       CH2
    III.   CORE PRINCIPLES                CH3
     A.    THE BIG FIVE                   CH3_A
     C.    SUMMARY                        CH3_C
    IV.    STARCRAFT2 BASICS              CH4
     A.    ECONOMY                        CH4_A
     B.    TERRAIN                        CH4_B
     C.    CORE GAMEPLAY                  CH4_C
     D.    INTERFACE                      CH4_D
    V.     RACES                          CH5
     A.    TERRAN                         CH5_A
     B.    ZERG                           CH5_B
     C.    PROTOSS                        CH5_C
     A.    GENERAL                        CH7_A
     B.    MAP FEATURES                   CH7_B
     C.    DEALING WITH RUSHES            CH7_C
     D.    ALLIED GAMES                   CH7_D
    VIII.  RESOURCES                      CH8
    IX.    OFF TOPIC                      CH9
     C.   Q&A WITH SHOCKWAVE              CH9_C
    IX.    QUESTIONS?                     CH10
    I. INTRODUCTION                                                    CH1
    Welcome to Shockwave's Starcraft2 ("SC2") faq!  This guide covers
    basics of SC2 and is primarily geared towards players who (1) want to
    succeed in multiplayer (2) have some experience with SC1.  This guide
    focuses on broad SC2/RTS principles, since SC2 will inevitably
    experience balance and gameplay patches.  Bearing that in mind, I will
    focus more on general principles that are less likely to go obsolete,
    and then point you to sites and forums that can give current
    information.  Although this is named a beginner's guide, this is
    useful for players across various skill levels.  I cover both very
    basic starting skills, as well as advanced concepts.
    IA. ABOUT THE AUTHOR                                   CH1_A
    I was Starcraft1's b.net forum MVP and played competitively
    particularly during early Starcraft1 ladder seasons.  I am responsible
    for the widely-referenced SC1 Beginner's Guide
    I was never a top player but I am very familiar with strats and
    fundamentals at all levels.  I was responsible for uncovering several
    key mechanics in SC1 such as the sprite limit bug.  I participated in
    Starcraft2 beta since its early inception and was a top diamond player
    during various phases.
    IB. WHAT TO EXPECT                                     CH1_B
    Outright, I need to start by giving a big caveat: This guide will not
    make you win all your games as you start out with Starcraft2 for the
    first time.  You can read and digest all the concepts here, watch
    every Starcraft2 tutorial online, etc., but you will still lose a LOT
    of games as you start out, regardless if you were a top pro player in
    SC1.  This guide will help you learn as quickly as possible, but for
    starters, you will need to hop in with low win expectations and eat a
    lot of losses while you learn.  This can be rather humbling if you
    were a top SC1 player since you will lose to players ordinarily much
    worse than you just because they started playing a bit before you did.
    The solution is to read through the principles here, jump online, play
    your games and get beaten and put into one of the lower leagues,
    swallow your losses, and practice.  After a few dozen games, you'll be
    back up to speed and rising through the ranks quickly just like in
    your old SC1 days.
    II. OVERVIEW                                                       CH2
    Most of you reading this document are probably former Starcraft1
    ("SC1") / Brood War ("BW") players, so a lot of this guide will assume
    a basic understanding of SC/RTS mechanics.  I will start with a
    general overview of the differences between SC1 and SC2.
    Two common questions from SC1 players are: (1) Is SC2 similar to SC1?
    (2) Am I going to lose games frequently as I start out playing SC2?
    The answer to both questions is "Yes", but hopefully this guide will
    help you start winning shortly.  If you're a SC1 player, here are some
    fundamental things to expect when getting into SC2:
    In terms of the overall feel of the gameplay, SC2 is closer to an
    expansion than an entirely new game.  If you can think back to how you
    felt when you first started playing BW in terms of familiarity with
    the game but unfamiliarity with strategy and interface improvements,
    that's how you'll feel when starting off in SC2.  If you liked SC1,
    you'll like SC2.  If you did well in SC1, you will do well in SC2 and
    should be able to pickup strategy fairly quickly.
    Just about everything you dreamed of is in SC2: unlimited sized
    control groups, rally directly to minerals, ability to hotkey multiple
    buildings and types, etc. (more on this later).  The interface
    improvements make economy/base management a lot more pleasant such
    that you can spend more time focusing on battles and micro.
    * E.G. You can now use shift queueing to tell a siege tank to unsiege,
      move to another location, and siege.
    * E.G. You can assign multiple barracks to a control group so that you
      can queue up a bunch of marines easily.
    Don't expect to be able to use identical strategy in SC2 that you did
    in SC1 (SC1 carrier rushers take note).  However, if you had a good
    handle on strategy in SC1, you'll find that you can translate that
    easily into SC2; you'll just be building different unit compositions.
    At the start, getting used to how to use the various units
    strategically is challenging, but you'll quickly adjust to being
    familiar with the new unit combinations.
    * E.G. Carriers are decent units but carrier rushing is not nearly as
      powerful and is not a common strategy.
    * E.G. Hydras are no longer stocky all-purpose units, they are frail
      and die quickly without support.
    In SC1, outside of ladder, you would often be put into lopsided games
    because player records are not an indication of skill.  E.G. Even if
    you created a "noobs only" game, it was likely that you'd end up
    against someone far better than you who is just playing you to pad his
    record.  By contrast, in SC2, all games factor into your ranking, and
    the matching system attempts to place you against similarly skilled
    players.  It might seem scary that every game "counts", but overall
    this sytem allows you to settle into a comfortable zone where your
    games are more likely to be challenging without being overwhelming.
    Of course, as you get better, your rank will improve and you'll hit
    better players, and likewise if you started on a lucky streak then you
    will not be doomed to keep playing against crazy platinum-level
    opponents; the matching system will bump you down to an appropriate
    The ranking system also awards you fairly for wins and losses
    depending on skill discrepancies.  If you are a bronze level player
    and lose against a diamond player, you will be penalized barely any
    points, and thus those games will be more like free practice and an
    opportunity to learn.
    The decision not to use public chat rooms has generated much
    controversy.  Suffice it to say, in SC2 you will only be able to
    network with other players by adding them as friends.  You can add a
    friend using your friend's registered email address, or their SC
    gameID (each SC2 account has a unique ID which is displayed when they
    login).  So, for connecting with friends, just ask them for the email
    that they used to register for SC2, or if they've logged in already
    then ask them for their gamerID.
    III. CORE PRINCIPLES                                               CH3
    Winning a game in SC is dependent upon many different factors.
    Beginner players often focus on wanting to know what units to build
    and what counters what; e.g. a typical beginner question is "My
    opponent made a bunch of tanks and creamed me, what am I supposed to
    build to counter this?" or "What constitutes a good attack force for
    Terran?  How many thors and tanks should I build?"  Unfortunately,
    these are actually the wrong things to focus on as a beginning player.
    While unit composition and proper counters are important for winning
    games, it is far more important to focus on fundamentals first versus
    specific strategies.  The following section contains the most
    important concepts to master in order to excel in Starcraft2.  Those
    are: basic economy and production management, and hotkey usage.
    IIIA. THE BIG FIVE                                     CH3_A
    The Big Five is my attempt to reduce SC1/2 learning into focusing on
    the most important issues that will help improve your gameplay.  You
    can read my original Big Five guide in my SC1 doc
    (http://www.gamefaqs.com/pc/25418-starcraft/faqs/29831), but I'll also
    include it here with some improvements.
    Most of these guidelines are focused to buliding a solid economy and
    using it; this (not unit composition) is the key to winning games at
    most skill levels.  Although technically you win games by killing your
    opponent's units, your ability to kill your opponent usually depends
    on how many units you have, which then depends on how strong your
    economy is.  If you have twice as many bases as your opponent, then
    you will almost certainly win due to having a superior economy
    (i.e. "win the resource war").
    You need lots of probes/SCVs/drones ("workers"/"peons") for each base.
    The general rule of thumb is to never stop building them.  You can
    never have enough peons.
    Zerg's paradigm is a bit different, but for Protoss/Terran, your
    Nexus/CC ("town hall") should always be building a worker.  It can be
    a bit cumbersome to remember to build workers, so if you have to,
    queue up a few workers so that they automatically build one after
    another.  Those workers should always be put to use, of course - you
    can rally them straight to minerals so that they automatically start
    mining/gathering once built (just select your town hall and
    right-click on a mineral patch).
    * E.G. An easy way to continually build workers is to put your town
      hall into a control group (I use "2").  With Protoss an example,
      when you're in the middle of a battle, you can just hit "2eee" to
      start a few more probes from your Nexus.  You can in fact hotkey
      multiple Nexuses to build peons from all of them.
    As mentioned above, Zerg's paradigm for building workers is a bit
    different, because you have to decide between building drones versus
    units.  I talk about this more in the Zerg race section; suffice it to
    say, there is no simple rule that works with Zerg, although the
    temptation is still to build too few drones so this rule holds as a
    general statement.
    Always build depots/pylons/overlords ("supply") early enough in
    advance so that you're not waiting on supply to finish ("supply
    blocked") in order to build more units.  You should try to never get
    the "You must construct additional pylons"-type supply block messages.
    * E.G. Generally in early game, you'll want to start building your
      next supply when your supply is 3 under its limit.  In later game,
      you'll want to build supply much earlier or in multiples.
    Spend minerals/gas ("resources") that you earn as fast as you can.
    Don't let resources pile up (this is called "floating" in some
    RTS-speak), because resources in the bank are doing nothing for you --
    those resources could have been more zealots, an expansion, etc.
    * E.G. Once you have a gateway, make sure it's making zealots whenever
    you have enough resources to spare, and if your gateway is building a
    zealot and you have even more resources then build a 2nd gateway (or
    tech, expand, etc.).  It's less important at beginner level what you
    do with your resources just as long as you spend them on something.
    Resources tend to pile up in particular while you're executing a
    battle (e.g. controlling your marines as they take out some zergling),
    so get used to the habit of reminding yourself to build unit even in
    the middle of battles.  SC2's interface makes this easy; you don't
    need amazing APM (i.e. keyboard/mouse speed) but rather just need to
    reemember to build at all times.  Watch your replays and keep an eye
    on your resources to see where you tend to fall behind.
    A related rule to this is: Don't queue a lot of unts in your
    production buildings just to keep your resources close to zero.  In
    other words, do not queue up 5 battlecruisers in a single starport.
    The reason is that when you queue units, this ties up your available
    resources even though you're only actively building the first unit in
    the queue.  If you have enough resources to queue up 5 battlecruisers
    in a single starport, then you should instead build 2 more starports
    so that you can be building those 5 battlecruisers in parallel.  When
    watching your replays, check that your production buildings are not
    idle (i.e. are always building something), and do not generally have
    more than 2 units queued up at any time.
    A standard beginner trend is to build tons of cannons, bunkers,
    turrets, spines, spores ("static defense"; i.e. buildings that attack)
    in your base, because static defense keeps you safe from attack and
    most such as cannons also detect cloak.
    However, because static defenses are defensive and in general don't
    move, they can't help you attack, which means that you automatically
    present less of an offensive threat to your opponent.  If you're
    playing against the computer, it'll happily send units at your wall of
    cannons and get those units killed, so this seems effective.  But when
    playing against a human, your opponent will realize that you have
    little to attack him with since you've been spending money on defense
    ("turtling"), and will take over the rest of the map and starve you
    out.  This means that you may not lose early in the game, but you will
    still lose because you've lost the resource war.
    * E.G. Do not incorporate a forge into your early build in order to
      make cannons.  
    * E.G. Be careful even about building bunkers.  Yes, you can salvage
      them for a full refund, but while you have bunkers, that's resources
      that's tied up that you could have used to make more barracks, start
      an earlier factory, etc.
    In fact, if you're starting out as a true beginner, then I would advise
    just pretending that static defense doesn't exist.  This will seem like
    a major handicap since you'll lose games because you don't have enough
    defenses at first, but this will force you to build units instead of
    relying on static defense.  Of course, as you become more experienced,
    you'll get a feel for when to appropriately build static defense.
    Send a worker out to your opponent's base fairly early in the game,
    e.g. usually when you are around 8-12 supply (you scout with a worker
    because around 8-12 supply, you won't have other units available).
    Once your worker is in your opponent's base, keep it alive as long as
    possible by having it continue to move around the base.
    Scouting is vital for getting an idea on what strategy your opponent
    is adopting, since your own strategy is typically defined by what your
    opponent is doing.  It is also not just a one-time event -- later,
    you'll want to send an observer or overlord or other expendable unit
    into your opponent's base to see what he's up to, or try sending
    another worker in, etc.  Even if you're not experienced enough yet to
    how exactly to respond to what you see when you scout, you will still
    benefit from what you see.
    * E.G. I scout with a probe in early game and see that my opponent is
      building a forge.  This means he is probably making cannons.  I will
      keep my probe alive long enough to see whether he starts warping in
      cannons after his forge is done.  If so, then I know he will be
      unable to attack me early on, so I can expand early.  I should then
      scout about a minute afterward to see if he is teching quickly
      (e.g. if I see a stargate and fleet beacon, I know he is making
      carriers so I need to make some anti-air).
    IIIB. HOTKEYS AND CONTROL GROUPS                       CH3_B
    Learning how to best use your keyboard and mouse when playing SC2 is
    the other big basic principle for success.  Beginner player are often
    frustrated by the wealth of options and actions in SC2, and some of
    you may just not be that fast with your fingers.  Two tricks can help
    you greatly with managing SC2 even if you are not lightning fast with
    your fingers.  These are keyboard shortcuts and control groups
    (collectively known as "hotkey usage").
    Keyboard shortcuts and control groups use are critical to effective
    play in SC2.  They are on par in importance to the Big Five but
    require more explanation so I've moved them to a separate section.
    There is no getting around using hotkeys -- you cannot become an
    effective SC2 player without good use of hotkeys.  As painful and
    nonintuitive as this may be, you must learn this section.
    If you have your Nexus selected, you can either click the build probe
    action button icon in the lower right corner, or hit "E" to build a
    probe.  "E" is thus the keyboard shortcut (sometimes called the
    "hotkey") for building a probe.  Why care about keyboard shortcuts?
    Because hitting "E" is much faster than mousing over to the action
    button, and thus hotkey usage presents a clear advantage for how
    quickly you can execute actions.  You should in general never be
    clicking on action buttons since every action has a hotkey.
    Keyboard shortcuts takes a bit of practice and getting used to but it
    is critical for effective play because in a combat situation you will
    not often have time to mouseover psi storm to select the spell, and in
    general want to minimize unnecessary mouse movement.
    There is a simple way to train yourself to use keyboard shortcuts.
    Whenever you don't know the keyboard shortcut to an action, mouse over
    to the action button icon so that you can see the keyboard shortcut,
    and then hit the keyboard shortcut (i.e. do not use your mouse to
    select the action).  For example, if I have my Nexus selected and
    forget the shortcut to build a probe, I'll mouse over the probe action
    button icon, see the "Build probe [E]" tooltip, and then I will hit
    "E" to build a probe.  If I accidentally press my mouse buton on the
    probe action button icon, I will hit ESCAPE to cancel that action and
    then hit "E".  This may seem somewhat cumbersome, but after doing this
    just a few times, you'll be able to build probes using "E" without
    giving it any thought; in other words, you'll build up muscle memory
    to perform keyboard shortcuts automatically.
    Note that the SC2 hotkeys options menu allows you to switch to the
    Grid hotkey layout, which moves all your commands to the left side of
    your keyboard.  If you can get used to this layout, this is very
    useful because it standardizes the keys across all races (e.g. all
    races' workers are built by "Q") and guarantees that the keys are all
    easy to reach with your keyboard.
    Control groups allow you to assign buildings or units to a number key
    (i.e. 0-9).  This is done by selecting something, holding down CTRL,
    and presing any number key.  From there on, whenever you press that
    number key, whatever you had assigned to that key will be selected
    again.  Control group use is critical for managing units and
    production throughout SC2; for example, in late game if you have 10
    stargates, you do not want to have to manually go back to your base,
    click on each stargate, and build a carrier; if you the stargates
    grouped to 1, you could just hit "1ccccccc" to build a bunch of
    carriers without taking your eyes off of what you are doing at the
    How you assign control groups is up to you.  However, be sure that you
    at least put all your town halls in one control group, and at least
    some of your production facilities in another.  Additionally, bear in
    mind that 2-5 are the easiest control group numbers to use (since they
    are easy to reach with your left hand), so generally favor assigning
    those first.  My scheme is as follows when using Terran:
    1 - Home base CC (so I can hit "11" to quickly get back to my main base).
    2 - Main combat ground group (marines, marauders, tanks, etc.).
    5 - Main combat air group (vikings, banshees, etc.).
    6 - All CCs (so during the middle of battle, I can hit "6ssss" to make 
        workers for all my bases).
    7 - All my barracks, factories, starports (so I can build new units at
        any time).
    0 - Temporary assignment (e.g. my first SCV scout, buildings that are
        actively researching upgrades).
    Starcraft2 contains many conveniences when using control groups,
    particularly for selections of mixed units and buildings.  If you have
    barracks, factories, and starports in one group, for example, you can
    use TAB to cycle between them, so that you can build some marines with
    "a", hit tab and build some siege tanks, hit tab again and build some
    vikings, etc.  Additionally, if you have multiple of the same
    building, then new units are queued up smartly -- e.g. if you have 3
    barracks selected and hit "a" 3 times, then 1 marine will be queued in
    each barracks (versus 3 in the first).
    IIIC. SUMMARY                                          CH3_C
    The Big Five and hotkey usage comprises most of what you actually need
    to know to both start off SC2 and get really good at the game.  I
    would recommen taking some time to master those principles above
    before moving on to getting distracted by these next sections which go
    into more specific strategy and information.  Having said that, the
    reality is that none of you are going to stop and just practice the
    Big Five and then read the rest of this later, so my caution is that
    you don't lose sight of the Big Five and hotkeys while reading the
    rest of this.  In the end, mastering those will help you with your
    beginning multiplayer a lot more than any of this information below.
    IV. STARCRAFT2 BASICS                                              CH4
    This section will cover some of the major SC2 principles.  This is
    mostly presented as differences between SC1 and SC2 although even if
    you didn't play SC1, you should be able to understand the concepts
    IVA. ECONOMY                                           CH4_A
    1. GAS IS KING
    The mechanism of gas collection has changed from SC1 to SC2. (1) Your
    base now starts with two geysers instead of one (2)
    Assimilator/refinary/extractor ("gas") costs less to build, and (3)
    Each gas harvests at half the rate compared to SC1 (i.e. 4 gas per
    worker trip instead of 8).
    Gas is the scarce resource in SC2, largely because minerals mine more
    effectively than in SC1 (more on this later).  It is thus not unusual
    to be in a situation where you have more minerals than you know what
    to do with, and not enough gas.  Most opening builds start with just
    taking one of your geyser; getting both is seen as a fairly aggressive
    tech move.  The optimal number of workers on gas is 3 (versus 4 in
    SC1).  (For some gas positions, 4 workers will give you marginally
    more yield, but it's typically so small that you do not need to commit
    the 4th worker.)  The other major gas behavior change is that gas
    cannot be mined once it's depleted.
    * E.G. It's typical to get one geyser very early, shortly after you
      start your first barracks/pool/gateway, since gas costs less than in
      SC1.  There are a few rare builds that delay first gas, but unless
      you really have good reason, get 1 and only 1 gas early.  Once your
      gas finishes, put 3 workers on it immediately.
    Because unit pathing is much better in SC2 than SC1, workers harvest
    minerals more efficiently (i.e. they are smarter about moving to
    patches and selecting empty patches).  You no longer need 3 probes per
    mineral patch; after 2 workers per patch, you will see sharply
    diminishing returns (you will still get gains up to around 3
    workers/patch, but the gains are very small).  You may then think that
    you should not keep building workers because you saturate at fewer.
    While in advanced strategy you will want to keep this in mind, when in
    doubt just build more workers.  This is because you tend to expand
    faster (more on this later) and each time you expand, you will want to
    transfer some workers ("Maynard", that's a verb) over to the new
    * E.G. For a typical 8-mineral base, optimal saturation on gas and
      minerals is 16 on minerals and 6 on gas, i.e. 22 workers.  This is a
      lot lower than SC1 numbers.  You should still constantly pump
      workers, since those can be transferred to expansions, and because
      as mentioned above, more than 2 workers does help with resource intake,
      the returns are just not as great.
    * E.G. Because pathing is smarter, you no longer need to manually
      separate your initial workers when assigning them to patches at game
      start.  Instead, just click on a patch and the workers will split
      optimally on their own.  If you're fast, you can then click on maybe
      one worker and assign it to a separate patch, but it's not generally
      worthwhile to try to manually assign the others unless you are playing
      on a very slow speed.
    It is important that you are familiar with each races' ability to
    speed up the rate of harvesting resources.  More will be mentioned
    about this in the race-specific sections, but you are at a
    disadvantage if you don't utilize these.  Protoss has chronoboost from
    the Nexus (i.e. build probes faster), Terran has MULEs from the
    Orbital Command (i.e. harvest minerals faster), Zerg has Spawn Larva
    from the Queen (i.e. generate more larvae to make drones faster).  Do
    not start playing a race until you're aware of that race's resource
    collection trick, or you'll be handicapping yourself.
    One-base play in SC1 was viable even past early-mid game since it took
    a while for the first base to become saturated with workers.  Since
    resource collection in SC2 is faster because workers mine more
    efficiently, expansions also tend to come much faster.  Prolonged
    one-base play is generally an "all-in" where if you do not kill your
    opponent early, you will almost certainly die from being
    out-resourced.  The first expansion, notably, is typically more
    valuable for its additional gas than minerals, given the rule#1: "gas
    is king".
    Knowing when to expand is always a tricky issue since it depends on
    what your opponent is done and how well your early attacks are
    executed; the easiest way to learn the timing is to watch some
    replays, mirror the build orders, and then make your own adjustments.
    Regardless of whether you learn particular build orders, however, just
    bear in mind that you should generally start your first expansion much
    earlier than in SC1.
    * E.G. It's common for Terran to start their first expansion at around
      25 supply, which seems super early for SC1 players.  Note that
      although the expansion costs you 400 minerals, it gives you 10
      supply (i.e. slightly more than a supply depot which costs 100
      minerals), a MULE shortly aferward if you build an orbital supply,
      and a huge resource income spike once you transfer some SCVs from
      your main to the expansion.  Thus, expansions pay for themselves
      very quickly, cost less than face value (since they give supply) and
      thus are not as risky as they may seem.
    Most maps will have at least one expansion that has gold mineral
    patches.  These give greater yield than normal minerals and
    controlling such expansions for any length of time covers an
    advantage.  Note that there is no such thing as high yield gas, so gas
    at these expansions is the same as in normal bases.  These expansions
    are often centrally located, blocked off by rocks, or otherwise
    inconvenient.  Note that controlling high yield doesn't guarantee
    victory, due to rule #1: "gas is king".
    The way to think of high yield minerals is that they're good to take
    when you think you can defend them, but their presence does not change
    strategy fundamentally.  In other words, if you're new to SC2, don't
    feel like you need to learn particular strategies for securing high
    yield expansions early, or that you'll lose if your opponent is able
    to grab one.  If it's too much to think about, just pretend they don't
    exist, and you'll still do fine.
    * E.G. Take a high yield expansion if it's convenient for you.  Don't
      feel pressured that you have to expand there immediately, or that
      your opponent is going to beat you early by exploiting this.  Do
      make sure you scout the high yield expansions so you can attack the
      expansion or at least force your opponent to overcommit to its
    IVB. TERRAIN                                           CH4_B
    Many maps have destructible rocks that form a temporary wall to bases.
    These take some effort to destroy because they are high health and
    armored, but they cannot be repaired nor reconstructed afterward.
    Almost all balanced maps have just one entrance ("choke") into the
    base, but the destroying the rocks can create another.  Be sure to
    build a pylon or put a unit near your destructible rocks so that you
    can see if your opponent is trying to break through.  Some maps hide
    visibility to the rocks through bushes (more on brushes later), so be
    sure to have a unit or structure that spots past the bushes for you.
    * E.G. Since Terran often relies on walling off their choke with
      buildings, they are very vulnerable to being backdoored if their
      rocks are taken out.  Although the rocks take a lot of effort to
      kill, even sending some units at Terran's rocks is usually enough to
      scare him into devoting considerable resources to defending against
      the threat of those rocks going down.  If you're playing against
      Terran and aren't actively attacking him, send some units to kill
      the rocks.
    A few units are able to walk up and down cliffs, so do not rely too
    much on just defending your choke.  These units are similar to air
    units in terms of mobility since they effectively ignore most terrain.
    When you play on newbie versions of maps (which use rocks to block off
    bases from early rushes) during practice rounds, don't be surprised if
    your opponents use reapers or colossus to attack you sooner than
    * E.G. As a newer player, you are likely to die a few times to
      cliff-traversing units such as reapers and colossus until you get
      the hang of this, but overally it is not a radical change.
    Most maps have at least a couple of neutral watch towers which are
    owned whenever a ground (i.e. not air) unit stands near them.  These
    towers then give a very large sight range.  The towers are generally
    situated in strategic positions to cover standard attack paths.
    Controlling these towers is very important as they give warning of
    attacks and sometimes can even see expansions, so they are somewhat
    like having a legal map hack.  Do not easily yield the towers to your
    opponent; fight over them if you have to.
    In SC1, you could attack units on high ground with a certain miss rate
    (i.e. you have a 25% chance that your attack will miss).  In SC2, you
    will never miss units on high grounds so there is no longer this
    penalty, but you must have sight on the high ground to attack it.
    Units on high ground will still appear to you when they attack, just
    like in SC1, but you will not be able to counterattack.  Sighting up
    high ground involves having a unit at that elevation, or using a
    floating building or air unit as a spotter.
    Weeds, billowing smoke, etc. ("brush") will obstruct sight such that
    if you are one side of the brush, you will not see units on the other
    side.  This is useful for hiding units or giving melee units an
    advantage over ranged opponents.  * E.G. Hide melee units near brush
    so that you can ambush ranged units walking by the other side.
    IVC. CORE GAMEPLAY                                     CH4_C
    In SC1, static defense was fairly robust, such that building static
    defense would assure that your opponent would have to take
    moderate/heavy losses to break through.  Static defense in SC2 is in
    general far less effective, as there are units that can take down
    defenses pretty easily without taking much if any losses.  You cannot
    count on cannons and spines to hold off a concerted attack.
    * E.G. Don't be surprised if you make a cannon in early game and start
      teching thinking you're safe, then a few marauders run up and
      destroy your cannons early while taking minimal losses.
    SC1 had concussive and explosive damage, each of which did variable
    damage to units depending on the target unit's size.  The general
    paradigm was that units would do decent damage against targets they
    are meant to attack (e.g. firebats against zealots), and poor damage
    against other units (e.g. firebats against tanks).  In SC2, most units
    do decent damage against everything, but totally obliterate units they
    are intended to attack.  This is a "hard counter" (versus SC1's "soft
    counter") system, and it means that building generic armies is not as
    effective as in SC1 because it will get destroyed by an opposing army
    that is made to counter it.
    There are no longer generic damage types; instead, some units will
    contain a flat bonus against certain armor types.  Pay close attention
    to these because they will determine what units counter what.  For
    example, immortals have a huge damage bonus against "armored" units;
    roaches and marauders are listed as "armored" type which means that
    you can assume that immortals will perform well against them.
    Similarly, banelings do extra damage against "light" units, and
    marines and zergling have "light" type which means that banelings are
    great against them but not so great against marauders and roaches.
    I realize this makes some parts of the Big Five (i.e. it doesn't
    matter what you build as long as you're building something) trickier,
    and it's a bit scary thinking about starting up SC2 where you'll die
    if you build the wrong units, but this is easily alleviated by just
    learning some good unit compositions (e.g. marine/marauder/tank) which
    will do fine up until the highest levels.
    Also note that Protoss shields no longer take full damage from
    everything; instead, they follow the same rules and armor type as
    their unit.
    * E.G. Banelings kill marines, which kill zerglings, which kill
      marauders, which kill banelings.  This is an example of the counter
    Part of the consequence of #2 is that battles are much more brief than
    in SC1, typically.  Although gamespeed is just about the same, units
    just kill each other and die faster than ever.  Micro (controlling
    individual units to great effect, such as using spellcasters or
    retreating specific units that are being attacked) is important, but
    macro (overwhelming your opponent with a lot of units or superior
    economy) starts playing a larger role.  Also, melee units have an
    easier time chasing after retreating units (e.g. in SC1 you could run
    your marine from zergling fairly effectively, whereas in SC2 your
    marine will get attacked more frequently while retreating), which
    sometimes makes retreat very punishing.  There is really nothing you
    can "do" to compensate for this change in gamepace except to be aware
    of it and to make sure you don't let your macro suffer.
    In SC1, certain unit combinations were quite immobile.  SC2 is full of
    better ways to get around the map, which adds more dynamics and faster
    pacing to the game.  Become comfortable with each race's mobility
    tricks or you'll be caught off guard.
    * E.G. Zerg have nydus worms (you'll lose at least a few games by this
      before you know what's going on), Protoss has warp gates to allow
      them to build units at forward pylons, Terran tends to have more
      dropships ("medivacs") since those double as healing for infantry.
    In SC1, workers were always targetted last if other military units
    were around; i.e. if you had any military unit nearby, the attacking
    units would ignore your workers and try to kill the military unit
    first.  You could exploit this in many interesting ways, such as
    attacking with SCVS+marines against zealots since the zealots would
    ignore the SCVs and walk around them to get to the marines.
    In SC2, workers are treated similar to any other attacking melee unit
    and will be targetted.  This means that if something breaks into your
    worker line, it is typically a good idea to run your workers instead
    of using them to attack.  In fact, workers are typically targetted
    first in priority.
    * E.G. You'll often have to run your workers if a unit gets into the
      mineral line.  In SC1, suppose a zealot got into your Terran base --
      you could just build a marine and have your workers attack the
      zealot and the zealot would get stuck trying to reach your marine.
      In SC2, the zealot will happily cut through your workers and ignore
      the marine.
    Similarly, spellcasters are treated as high priority targets.  In SC1,
    spellcasters that did not have a normal attack (e.g. templar, science
    vessels) were treated as lower priority than all military units.  In
    SC2, spellcasters tend to be preferentially targetted.
    * E.G. In SC1, if you were attacking a Terran siege tank line, you
      could attack simultaneously with zealots and templar, and the
      templar would be able to get into range to storm because the tanks
      would ignore them until after the zealots were all dead.  In SC2,
      your templar are likely to be attacked.
    IVD. UNITS AND UNIT BEHAVIOR                           CH4_D
    Energy-using units ("spellcasters") all have a maximum of 200 energy
    and cannot be upgraded to 250 energy.  Instead of an upgrade that
    increases the total energy, most energy units have an upgrade that
    increases their starting energy.  This is arguably more useful because
    it makes spellcasters more immediately able to cast spells after being
    * E.G. If you upgrade templar energy, they will build with 75 energy,
      which means that they can immediately psi storm.  Using warpgates,
      you can quickly create a templar anywhere near a pylon, so in the
      middle of being attacked, you can warp in a templar and storm
    In SC1, some buildings are smaller (or more "porous") than others even
    if they take up the same amount of space.  For example, if you put a
    depot next to a barracks, then units would be able to fit through the
    space between the two buildings if they were arranged horizontally but
    not if they were arranged vertically.
    In SC2, all buildings fully take up the grid, so two buildings next to
    each other will always prevent units from going inbetween.  This makes
    walling in much easier and strategic.  Also, basic units are now the
    same size -- if a zealot can't fit through a crack, then neither can
    * E.G. As Terran, you'll almost always want to wall off the choke to
      your base so that units cannot get into your base without destroying
      part of your wall.  Two depots, a rax, and the rax's add-on will
      seal the wall as long as those are all flush, regardless of
    In SC1, if you invested in weapons/armor upgrades, you had to wait a
    long time before those actually finished researching.  If you lagged
    behind on upgrades compared to your opponent, it was really difficult
    to catch up.  In SC2, upgrades finish researching a lot faster, which
    means they are very much worth investing in.  Typically, when you have
    an upgrade station constructed, you should be researching the upgrade
    since it will finish shortly and will give significant gains to the
    affected unit.  You can also queue upgrades (e.g. at your armory, hit
    "SP" to start on ship weapons and then ship plating right afterward).
    Most units that have a splash or area of effect ("AoE") attack will
    not damage friendly units (i.e. they do "friendly splash" aka "good
    splash".  One notable exception is siege tanks (which does "non-
    friendly" aka "indiscriminant" splash).
    Additionally, units that do friendly splash will not injure teammates'
    * E.G. In SC1, it was risky in team play for your opponent to use
      reavers because even though reavers won't damage his own units,
      they'll damage yours.  In SC2, you don't have to worry about your
      ally's banelings harming your own units.
    In SC1, if you wanted to psi storm an air unit, you just clicked on
    the unit.  Since SC2 does not use a top-down view, though, you will
    instead have to click slightly below the unit (a vertical line is
    drawn from the unit to its actual spot on the ground).  This takes a
    while to get used to, and in the meantime you may miss air units when
    using area of effect ("AoE") spells such as psi storm and EMP.
    Also note that most AoE spells cannot be targetted on a unit, they
    must be cast onto the ground.
    IVD. INTERFACE                                         CH4_D
    In SC1, if you have 12 battlecruisers ("BCs") and tell them to yamato
    one target, all 12 BCs will waste their yamato on that target.  In
    SC2, the same command will cause only one BC to actually cast yamato.
    Suppose you have 12 BCs (that have enough energy to cast yamato)
    and want to have them yamato 6 carriers to death (i.e. 2 yamatos
    per carrier).  Here's two ways of doing this:
    * Select your BCs, press "Y", hold down SHIFT, click on each carrier
    * Select your BCs, press "Y", click on carrier #1, press "Y", click
    on carrier #1, press "Y", click on carrier #2, press "Y", click on
    carrier #2, etc.
    [credit to hoywolf for pointing out that you don't need to use SHIFT
    with smart casting]
    If you rally your town hall to minerals or gas, workers produced will
    automatically start mining.  You can even rally workers to a partially
    building gas, and the workers will start mining once the gas finishes
    building.  This is a huge improvement because it makes economy
    management a lot easier to handle -- you don't have to keep coming
    back to your base and assigning workers to minerals as they're built.
    You can now select multiple buildings, or really any combination of
    buildings and units.  If you have like-buildings selected and queue up
    multiple units, they will be logically built (e.g. if you have 5
    barrraks and start hitting "a" to build marines, then each barracks
    will start producing 1 marine before any of the barracks queues a 2nd.
    This makes later-game unit production much easier, since you can just
    group 12 barracks in one group and spam hitting "a" to make marines.
    This is particularly useful for Zerg, who uses just hatcheries for
    their unit production.  If you hotkey all your hatcheries to 1, you 
    can then hit "1szzzzzzzzz" to build a bunch of zergling out of all 
    your available larva.
    You can now select more than 12 units in a single control group.
    Control groups are unlimited size.  If different types of units or
    buildings are selected, tab can be used to select between like units.
    This makes late game unit management much cleaner since in SC1, it
    was tough to control a swarm of cheap units (e.g. 100 zergling)
    because you would have to break up the swarm into multiple control
    In SC1, if you had one unit follow another (e.g. select a marine,
    right-click on another marine), then the unit will not respond to
    threats.  Thus, right-clicking on a lead unit was similar in threat
    behavior as doing a move (versus attack-move) command.  In SC2, follow
    is generally treated as attack-move.
    Most abilities work against the minimap now.  This becomes
    particularly useful for abilities that target buildings, such as the
    queen's spawn larvae.
    * E.G. Select all your queens, click V, hold down SHIFT, and click on
      various points on the minimap where you have hatcheries.  You can
      even click a few times in case you miss, since queens will not
      recast spawn larvae on a hatchery that already has spawning larvae.
    In SC1, if you set the rally point of a barracks to some marine, and
    the marine died, then the rally point would be lost.  In SC2, you can
    hold down shift and queue up rally points.  One use would be to hold
    down shift and click on a bunch of marines in the same group; thus, if
    one marine died, then the rally point would then default to the next
    If workers are not actively building, repairing, mining, etc., they
    are added to an idle worker count that is shown on your screen as an
    icon.  You can select these workers in sequence by hitting F1 or
    clicking on the idle worker icon.  Check this periodically; e.g. if
    gas or minerals run out, then workers on those resources will become
    idle.  In particular, one thing to get used to is that your gas will
    run out, so you cannot just put workers on gas and leave them on
    When in doubt, hit stop ("S) before ordering a unit to perform new
    actions, particularly spellcasters ("S" causes the unit to stop its
    current action and clear its action queue).  Otherwise, smart casting
    may cause the unit to finish its previous command before casting the
    spell.  For example, if you attack-move 3 high templar in a mixed
    group, then hold down shift, then cast psi storm 3 times, then your
    templar may first move to the attack-move spot before psi storming.
    If this sounds confusing, the easy rule to remember is that if a
    spellcaster (particularly ones that does not have an attack) is in
    motion, before you cast a spell with it, hit "S".
    In SC1, you had to have enough resources to start building a buiding,
    but if your resources dropped below the building cost by the time your
    worker got to the spot, you wouldn't build.  This could lead to
    critical issues such as noticing that you didn't in fact build that
    turret that you queued up in your base.  In SC2, once you issue a
    build command, resources are taken away and reserved.  Additionally,
    you can shift-queue to build multiple buildings either with one or
    multiple workers, so it's easy to get a couple of SCVs to build a
    bunch of turrets in succession using a single sequence of commands.
    Some ability can be toggled to autocast, such that units will
    automatically use the ability when appropriate.  In SC1, this was true
    for medics.  In SC2, one of the primary uses is with SCVs.  If you
    right-click on the repair icon, it will start flashing, and this will
    signify that the SCV will automatically repair any damaged unit or
    structure (including those belong to allies) if idle.  Thus, an easy
    way to keep your mech army repaired is to select a few SCVs, activate
    repair on auto-cast, and right-click on any unit in your army.
    Carrier interceptors can also be set to autocast, which means that the
    carrier will automatically build new interceptors.
    Hitting SPACE will center your view on the last notification (e.g. "we
    are under attack", "add-on complete").  In SC1, only the very last
    notification would be remembered, so you had no way of centering on an
    earlier notification.  In SC2, hitting SPACE multiple times will
    continue to cycle you back through your notifications.
    V. RACES                                                           CH5
    The following are concepts that you should know about each race in order
    to play effectively.  First, I will list a few things that you
    absolutely must know for each race, then after that I'll mention some
    other good-to-know techniques and tricks.
    I will also discuss each race's "super" unit (or "core" unit).  Note
    that just because this unit is listed as a super unit does not mean
    that you will necessarily incorporate it into all of your builds.  And
    the designation as a super unit is fairly arbitrary; this is something
    that became established during the beta.  Balance patches in the
    future may also make some of these units obsolete.  However, since it
    would be too much to discuss every unit in depth, I will just point
    out each super unit.
    Finally, I will discuss UI tricks for each race.
    VA. TERRAN                                             CH5_A
    Command centers ("CC") no longer use add-ons (nuke silo, comsat).
    Instead, the CC upgrade converts the CC itself.  There are two
    possible upgrades -- the orbital command ("OC") or planetary fortress
    ("PF").  Once you choose either, that upgrade is permanent and you
    cannot switch or undo.
    You should pretty much always build an orbital command on your command
    center as soon as possible -- i.e. immediately after your first
    barracks is done since a barracks is a tech requirement for the
    orbital command.  If you are building an SCV when your barracks is
    done, cancel the SCV so you can start your OC earlier.
    Getting your OC done as soon as possible is critical because of MULEs,
    which boost your economy (more on this below).  There are only very
    rare circumstances where the OC is not the first thing you build in
    early game after your barracks finishes.
    You will generally want to build OCs on your expansion CCs as well.
    Although the OC costs 150 minerals, you will very quickly make up
    the resources.
    The OC gives you access to 3 abilities, 1 of which is a lot more used
    than the other 2.  The MULE calldown allows you to summon a temporary
    super SCV-like unit that mines faster than a normal SCV and can mine
    from the same patch as another SCV or MULE (the MULE doesn't interrupt
    the SCV's mining, or vice versa).  The MULE will mine ~300 minerals
    during its lifetime and the MULE duration is the same as the time it
    takes your CC to generate 50 energy, so you will always have enough
    energy in your CC to call down another MULE after the previous
    expires.  290 minerals within 30 seconds is a TON of resources.
    Therefore, unless you are really in a bind, do NOT use your Orbital
    Command to scan or to calldown supply.  Essentially, a scan costs you
    290 minerals, so everytime you have to scan, your opponent will feel
    very happy.
    * The lack of usable scan is thus a big difference from SC1 where
      scanning was frequent.  Instead, scout using floating buidings
      (e.g. build a barracks and fly it over your opponent's base).
    * Because OC gives you so much minerals through MULEing, you will
      generally want to favor building a OC over a Planetary Fortress on
      expansions.  Regardless of what you choose, you will almost always
      want to upgrade every CC to either a OC or PF immediately after the
      CC is built.
    * You can calldown a MULE straight onto a mineral patch by clicking on
      the MULE icon (or hitting "E") and then clicking on a mineral patch.
      The MULE will then immediately start mining when it finishes its
      summon animation.
    * Note that MULEs don't actually just give you more minerals; instead,
      they cause minerals to be mined faster.  This means your first
      base's minerals will run out faster, which is why expanding early is
    * If you have several CCs in one control group, then you can calldown
      MULEs just using that single control group, and one of the CCs with
      enough energy will cast the MULE.  (This is the same as how other
      spells work in SC2.)  Another good reason for putting all your CCs
      in one control group is so that you can use scan on demand -- if you
      select all your CCs and scan, then whichever CC has energy to scan
      will perform the scan.
    * You will rarely want to keep more than 50 energy in a CC.  Whenever
      you have 50 energy, calldown another MULE.  The only common
      exception is if you are deliberately saving energy for scan (for
      cloak detection or scouting); but, again, try to do without scan
      since MULEs are so good for resourcing.
    Ebays, in addition to upgrading infantry attacks, also can upgrade
    turret range, building structure armor, and bunker capacity.  Turret
    range and structure armor are in particular very useful, and both
    research quickly.  If you are expanding aggressively, then getting
    both upgrades will significantly increase the durability of your
    bases.  The armor structure upgrade will benefit all your buildings,
    including your turrets and bunkers.
    In SC1, Toss's ability to throw down cannons to instantly guard an
    expansion was enviable since Terran could only build anti-air
    (turrets) or would need marines to fill bunkers.  In SC2, Terrans have
    the best base defense in the game, being the planetary fortress
    ("PF").  This is an upgrade for the CC, just like Orbital Command,
    although you have to choose between them.  As mentioned earlier, OC is
    amazing for income generation.  PFs are equally amazing for base
    defense.  The PF gun does a lot of damage, including splash, and is
    attached to the CC so it is difficult to take down.  Since your PF is
    a command center, you will probably also have many SCVs mining nearby,
    so those can be sent to repair the PF as it's being attacked.  
    PFs with a few turrets for anti-air can withstand just about anything,
    particularly if upgraded with range and building armor (from the
    engineering bay).  The general rule is to build OCs on bases which you
    can reasonably protect, and PFs on bases where you need extra defense
    (such as gold expansions).  You really do not want to build a ton of
    PFs due to how amazing OCs are for income generation.
    * E.G. A base with a PF can take out seemingly infinite numbers of
      zergling.  Once the zergling attack, just select your SCVs, click on
      auto-repair, and click on the PF.  The SCVs will surround the PF
      which means they will heal it quickly, and they'll keep the zergling
      out of melee range of the PF.
    In later game, it is sometimes useful to build multiple PFs at
    expansions for defense.  Although they are expensive, you will often
    be mineral-rich (i.e. limited by the amount of gas you have versus
    minerals) in which case spending money to build a CC just to use as a
    PF is justifiable.
    Although as a general rule you should not build a lot of static
    defense, Terran can get away with this because their bunkers can be
    salvaged for 100% return.  Thus, you can build bunkers when needed and
    then just resell them afterward.  This allows for some very effective
    defensive options because you don't have to worry about overcommitting
    to defense.  Having said this, a bunker you build temporarily is still
    taking up resources until destroyed, so don't overdo bunkers.
    Each basic military production building can be augmented with either a
    tech lab or reactor.  These add-ons can be swapped around by just
    lifting the buidings and placing them on the add-ons, just like in SC1
    with CC add-ons.  The advantages of tech swap are twofold: (1) you can
    tech very quickly (2) you have additional flexibility in terms of
    * E.G. It's typical to start with a barracks with a lab add-on; but
      later on, you can lift that barracks and replace it with a starport
      if you want to make banshees or ravens fast, instead of building the
      starport and then making a tech lab afterward.  You could even lift
      your barracks, build a 2nd reactor while the starport is building,
      and then stick your barracks back on your first reactor.
    * E.G. In early game, you often will want to pump out hellions fast.
      It's typical to make a rax with a reactor, then make a factor, then
      swap the factory with the rax.  Later on, after you're done with
      hellions, you can swap back, or even stick a starport onto the
      reactor to make fast vikings or medivacs.
    SCVs can be set to auto-repair (right-click on their repair icon so
    that it animates), which means that they will find and repair any
    nearby units or buildings.  This makes SCVs very valuable to take
    along on attacks of any composition because they can build bunkers (if
    you're using infantry), or repair vehicles/ships (if you're using
    mech/air).  Generally, there is no reason not to have SCVs on
    auto-repair.  MULEs can also be used for repair, and can be called
    down anywhere so you can use them to repair your fleet of BCs that's
    far away from home.
    I will generally keep all my SCVs on auto-repair.  There are very
    few drawbacks to doing so.  Note that as usual, repairing does take
    resources, although the amount of resources to repair is fairly small
    compared to the original cost of the unit; i.e. units are far cheaper
    to repair than to rebuild.
    SCVs autorepairing mech can make the mech very durable.  Thors in
    particular can be kept alive for very long periods of time in early-mid
    game if you bring a few SCVs along to repair, given that Thors have
    a large amount of health and take up a large amount of space (i.e. are
    easy for SCVs to surround and repair).
    Unlike in SC1, you no longer have cheap healing in SC2.  Instead, you
    have to build medivacs.  These operate in much the same way (e.g. only
    one medivac can heal one unit at a time, it costs mana, and the
    healing rate is pretty fast).  If you are going with bio ball
    (i.e. marine/marauder), it's pretty common to tech up to medivacs to
    support your army.  Note that since medivacs are transports too, this
    allows you a lot of mobility and the threat of base drops.
    * E.G. Use medivacs to heal your marauder army, and then in a lull,
      load up the marauders and drop them into your opponent's mineral
      line.  You'd be surprised how fast this will kill the workers, any
      static defense, and the town hall itself.
    Sieged tanks have a long cooldown which can be exploited by baiting
    them with a single expendable unit.  In SC1, you could send a zergling
    at 12 tanks and maybe all 12 would fire at the zergling, then you
    could send in the rest of your army and slaughter the tanks while
    they're waiting to fire again.  In SC2, tanks will not overfire units;
    i.e. each unit will be hit by exactly the number of tank shots needed
    to kill it.  This means that in the above scenario, only 1 tank would
    fire at the zergling.  Tanks also do decent damage even in unsieged
    mode.  Not surprisingly, these two facts make tanks one of the best
    units in the game.
    On a related note, use tanks both offensively and defensively.  Often,
    newer players will build tanks at their choke and leave them there for
    defense.  This is a great for keeping you safe since defensive tanks
    are difficult to break through, but tanks at your opponent's doorstep
    are equally difficult to break through and present an immediate
    threat.  If you must, leave a couple of tanks in your base for
    defense, but bring the rest along with your attack and set them up
    outside your opponent's base to pound on his buildings or units from
    afar; this necessitates an immediate response because if he can't
    kill your tanks quickly, then they will do a lot of damage as you
    advance them forward into his base.
    Also note that as with SC1, tanks can fire farther than they can see.
    Use air units or scan to extend your tank sight range.  Unlike in SC1,
    if you have sight range and he doesn't, he can't fire back at your
    tanks even as your tanks are hitting his own.
    Finally, bear in mind that tanks in normal mode actually do a good
    amount of damage, particularly to armored units.  Tanks can be used 
    effectively in tank mode and in fact will sometimes kill units faster
    in tank versus siege mode.  Siege mode obviously has the advantage of
    range and splash, but tanks as a combat unit are quite effective in
    certain early-mid game attacks even before siege is researched.
    In SC1, if you walled off your choke and then had to get out, you
    would need to lift your barracks.  In SC2, you can lower your depots,
    move your units out, then raise the depots.  You may want to by
    default lower depots that are built inside your base that are not part
    of a wallin, since this will allow your units to get around easier.
    Raising or lowering doesn't affect depots' combat durability.
    In SC1, SCVs had a very large amount of health which makes them
    decent attacking units to bring along with your army, and also
    fairly resistant to being killed while constructing buildings.
    SCVs in SC2 are not nearly as durable.
    * One consequence is that in early game, your SCV building your
    depot/rax is often far away from your base and thus susceptable to
    being attacked by a scouting worker.  The general defense to this is
    to send two additional SCVs once you see this happening -- one repairs
    your SCV, the other attacks the scouting worker.
    * A tactic that has fallen out of favor is attacking with a mixed
    marine/SCV force.  The SCVs will tend to be targetted first by the AI,
    which will keep your marines alive for longer.  However, since SCVs
    have low health, this is often a waste for resources unless you are
    doing an "all-in" type of attack where you expect to knock out your
    opponent with a massive SCV attack supported by a small number of
    Sensor towers are available after construction of an engineering bay,
    and reveal units on your view and minimap.  Any unit in the detection
    range of the tower and outside your visible range (i.e. in your "fog
    of war") will show up as a red mark.  This includes cloaked units, but
    the tower does not provide detection to attack them.  (E.G. If a dark
    templar walks towards your base, you will see it as a red mark but you
    will still need a turret/raven/scan/etc. to be able to actually attack
    it.  Your opponent will be able to see the extents of the sensor tower
    and thus will know whether you are aware of his units.  Therefore,
    don't depend on them too much, because your opponent can just walk
    around them.
    Sensor towers have a number of good uses:
    * Build one in your base to be able to tell when your opponent is
      moving in to attack.  One is often enough, although two provides
      complete coverage if you them on opposite corners.
    * A sensor tower in your base can give you early warning of
      harassment, such as hit-and-runs from mutas.
    * Sensor towers can be used in conjunction with tank pushes.  In SC1,
      you had to advance tanks forward slowly (e.g. have two lines of
      tanks where you constantly unsiege the back line, bring it forward a
      bit, and resiege) to prevent being caught off-guard with all your
      tanks unsieged and advancing.  In SC2, if you build a sensor tower
      towards the area you are advancing, you can safely move your tanks
      through that area since the tower will tell you if units are waiting
      in ambush.
    Don't overbuild sensor towers since they are somewhat expensive.
    The marauder is the Terran's super/basic/core unit.  Marauders are
    good against just about everything on ground due to the fact that they
    hard counter armored units, slow almost all units upon attack, and
    have high health.  Note that even though they are infantry, they are
    very durable and thus not vulnerable to a lot of anti-infantry
    counters; think of them more like zealots than marines in terms of
    their durability.  Be sure to get both the concussive shells upgrade
    and stim.  Use stim liberally because the health cost is not that
    great whereas the added effectiveness in both movement and attack
    speed is scary.
    * Marauders can go toe to toe against just about anything on the
      ground apart from units that deal area of effect damage.  Forget
      about marines being the backbone of your army; in general, build
      marauders unless you need anti-air.
    * Since marauders deal extra damage against armored units, they are
      also great against buildings.  Notably, they have enough health and
      damage output to be able to charge up to static defenses and destroy
      them with minimal losses.
    * Since marauders are high health, they are also easy to keep alive
      using medivacs.  Medivac healing is nowhere near as effective as SC1
      med healing, but it is still very good.
    * Feel free to stim marauders liberally.  Stim greatly increases their
      movement and damage up to pretty insane levels, and the health hit
      is not that significant.  See for yourself how fast a group of
      stimmed marauders can take out a town hall.
    In SC1, if you wanted to have medics follow marines, you could just
    right-click the med on a marine.  In SC2, if you right-click on a
    marine, the medivac will load it up.  Instead, just hit "A" and click
    on the marine, as if you are ordering the medivac to attack it:
    * Example:
    a. Select your medivacs.
    b. Press "A".
    c. Left-click on a marine in your blob.
    Result: The medivacs will follow that marine and heal it and other 
    neighboring units as needed.
    As mentioned earlier in the hotkey section, you should definitely
    have one hotkey with all your CCs so that you can quickly build
    SCVs.  Hotkeying all your CCs together will also allow you to use
    scan on demand; if you hit "C" to scan, then the AI will automatically
    choose one CC that has enough energy to perform the scan.  This is
    particularly useful for cloak detection.
    In SC1, tank hopping (i.e. have a couple of groups of tanks in an
    advancing line where you continuously unsiege the back row, move it
    forward, siege, and then repeat) was a micromanagement chore.  In SC2,
    you can tell a tank or group of tanks to unsiege, move, and then
    resiege, all in one queued set of commands:
    * Example:
    a. Select your tanks.
    b. Press "D".
    c. Right-click on the spot you want to resiege your tanks at.
    c. Hold down SHIFT.
    d. Press "E".
    Result: the tanks will unsiege, move to the new spot, and siege.
    Suppose you have 2 barracks selected, one with a reactor and one with
    a tech lab.  You would like to build 2 marines and a marauder all in
    parallel (which you should be able to do -- the reactor rax should be
    able to build 2 marines in parallel while the tech rax builds the
    marauder).  If you hit "DAA", you will get that correct behavior.  If
    you hit "AAD", you will instead incorrectly have one marine queued in
    the reactor rax and one marine queued in the tech rax, with the
    marauder waiting for the tech rax marine to finish.
    If that example is hard to follow, sorry this is difficult to explain,
    so just keep this in mind: If you have a mixed group of buildings
    selected such that some have reactors and some have tech labs, hit the
    button to build the tech lab units (e.g. siege tank, BC, marauder,
    thor etc.) first, and then hit the button to build the reactor units
    (e.g. viking, medivac, marine).  In this way, the reactor-enabled units 
    will be assigned to the buildings with reactor.
    Hopefully Blizzard will correct this mechanism soon in which case
    this point will become moot.  In beta, this UI issue was avoided
    because the rax would be assigned to different tab groups (i.e. one
    group for tech, one group for reactor).
    * Example:
    a. Select two barracks, one with tech and one with reactor.
    b. Press "DAA".
    Result: A marauder is started in your tech-rax, and two marines are
    started in parallel in your reactor-rax.
    In SC1, to stim units in a bunker, you would have to first unload the
    unit, stim, and reload.  In SC2, you can just select the bunker(s) to
    stim any units in it.  (Side note: in the single player campaign, if
    you have medics in the bunker, the medics will heal your stimmed
    units; unfortunately in multiplayer medics don't exist.)
    * Example:
    a. Load a marauder, reaper, and marines into a bunker.
    b. Select the bunker.
    c. Press "T".
    Result: The marauder and marines are stimmed.  (The reaper is not 
    because reapers cannot be stimmed.)
    This actually applies to all races but I'll stick it here.  Suppose
    you have some SCVs mining minerals, your refinary finishes, and you
    want to transfer 2 workers to the refinary.  However, those workers
    are carrying a mineral load.  If you just click on the refinary, the
    workers will lose whatever minerals they're carrying (i.e. they will
    enter the refinary and come out with their minerals replaced with
    gas).  To get around this, you could click on your CC, then on the
    refinary, in order to have the workers return the minerals before going to
    the gas.  However, there's a much easier way to accomplish the same,
    using the "C" hotkey, which tells the workers to first return their
    load before executing the current action.
    * Example:
    a. Select 3 workers that are carrying mineral loads.
    b. Right-click on your refinary.
    c. Press "C".
    Result: The workers first return to the CC to deposit their mineral
    loads, then head over to the refinary.
    VB. ZERG                                               CH5_B
    Queens are built straight from the hatchery ("hatch") and do not
    require larvae.  You should almost always build a queen as soon as
    your spawning pool is done (since the spawning pool is a tech
    requirement for queens).  There are very few circumstances where you
    would not build a queen immediately when your pool finishes.  The
    reason you build a queen as early as possible is because queens enable
    the hatchery to generate additional larva, and larva is critical for
    economy and unit production.
    Queens fulfill a number of functions but are primarily used for their
    spawn larvae ability ("puke"), which causes the hatchery to spit out a
    set number of extra larva per application after some time.  The time
    it takes for the larvae to be produced is the same as the time it
    takes the queen to regenerate the energy needed to puke, thus a hatch
    should always be generating larvae.  Larva generation and diligent
    queen use is the key to Zerg play, since the number of larva dictates
    both how fast you can make drones or units.
    In SC1, Zerg had to build a number of hatches to produce enough larva,
    but in SC2 a queen is essentially equivalent to having another hatch.
    You thus do not need to build a second hatch as part of standard Zerg
    play, and there is rarely a reason to build a hatch in your base
    versus at an expansion.
    Note that the queen is a fairly effective anti-ground and anti-air
    unit, which means that in ZvZ, you should not leave your scouting
    overlord at your opponent's base or it'll get shot down.  Queens are
    also decent against even mid-game air, although their long build time
    means you can't just pump out queens if you get caught off guard by
    Overlords ("OL"s) no longer detect cloaked units.  They must be
    individually upgraded into Overseers; this becomes available at lair
    level and costs quite a bit of resources per OL.  For this reason,
    cloaked attacks against Zerg are fairly effective, and teching early
    to lair is fairly common in order to get detection.
    This is moreso a warning to other races versus a must-know for Zerg.
    Nydus operate differently in SC2 than SC1.  You can now build a Nydus
    entrance at lair level (i.e. very early in the game), and once you
    have one, you can then build exits *anywhere you have sight* for a
    modest resource cost.  Note that this includes anywhere your overlords
    or units can see; it does not have to be on creep!  This opens up
    endless opportunities for backdooring into an opponent's base, since
    nydus worms build fairly quickly and there is no limit to the number
    of units you can cram in there.  If your opponent destroys your exit,
    you can always just build another one somewhere else, it just costs
    you some resources for each exit.
    * The nydus behaves as a shared tunnel system (similar to GLA in
      Command&Conquer:Generals) where you can put units in at any Nydus
      and remove them from any other Nydus, versus in SC1 where each Nydus
      was paired.
    * Once the nydus exit finishes production, a sound notification is
      played that is heard by everyone (e.g. similar to how the nuclear
      missile launch notification is seen/heard by everyone).
    * Nydus exits have fairly low health, so if you are being nydus'd, try
      attacking the worm first to kill it and then take care of the units
      that have poured out, unless you know that you can handle the stream
      of units.
    * Because of the power and flexibility of nydus worms, OL drops are
      less common in SC2 than SC1.  Unlike with OLs, units do not die if
      the Nydus is destroyed, and if an attack is failing then you can
      always retreat your units into the Nydus if it is still alive.
    * Nydus can hold an infinite number of units.  You can even rally
      units from your hatches into your Nydus.
    Hatches now have two rally points - one for units, and one solely for
    drones.  Right-click on a mineral patch to set the drone rally point.
    Then right-click anywhere else to set the unit rally point.  Note that
    queens do not ever rally (either to the worker or unit).
    Once you have multiple hatches, hotkey them all together in one
    control group and you can then select them and right-click anywhere to
    set a common unit rally point.  This does not disturb their drone
    rally point so it is very useful.
    All Zerg units move faster on creep.  Some, like queens, move
    significantly faster on creep.  Spreading creep is pretty important,
    particularly spreading creep between bases for shared defense.  Creep
    can be spread by creep tumors, or maintained by overlords at lair
    In SC1, you typically built a second hatch to have more larvae; since
    hatches can produce any unit, you could treat the 2nd hatch as a
    barracks or gateway that can also produce drones.  Since you're
    building a 2nd hatch anyway, you might as well put it at an expansion
    if you can defend that expansion.  Almost all maps have a ready
    easy-to-defend ("natural", as in "this is naturally the first place
    you would expand") expansion.
    In SC2, you can get away with just 1 hatch since a queen effectively
    doubles the hatch's larvae output.  This allows for some interesting
    1-base fast-tech possibilities.  Note though that this does not mean
    you shouldn't get a 2nd hatch.  It is fairly common in most build
    orders to get a 2nd hatch at your expansion just in like SC1,
    particularly if you're going with a gas-heavy strat (e.g. mutas) since
    this gives you access to two more geysers.  It is very rare to have
    multiple hatcheries in one base; just make sure you have a queen for
    each hatchery.
    Spreading creep is fairly essential to mobility and base defense,
    since units such as queens and zergling can more effectively chase
    down and engage enemy units if they are fighting on creep.  Creep can
    be permanently created by queens via creep tumors -- tumors act like
    creep colonies from SC1 but can each plant an additional tumor,
    meaning that once one is down, you can continue to spread creep
    indefinitely.  Although using queen energy for puking is generally
    queens' primary purpose, consider building a second queen to start
    creeping out, or just wait until your queen has enough energy both to
    puke and to creep (since inevitably you'll forget to puke all the
    time, so your queen will eventually have enough energy for both puking
    and creeping).
    Creep tumors are invisible except while building.  Your opponent will
    know that they're there because he'll see the creep of course, but
    he'll need detection to remove the tumor.  Creep tumors also give
    sight, so you can see anything that's on your creep!
    Overlords can also generate creep at lair level and generally should
    be all toggled on to generate creep once your lair tech finishes since
    there is no drawback to doing so (i.e. they still move the same speed
    etc.).  Placing overlords in well traveled paths generating creep can
    help with Zerg mobility.  You can even sit overlords at enemy
    expansions puking creep in order to prevent the opponent from building
    a town hall there.
    Build overlords when larva is about to spawn.  Unlike other races,
    which build units steadily (e.g. one zealot after another), Zerg
    builds units in spurts since larvae is produced in batches.  If 4
    larva from the queen's puke are about to finish, then you should have
    at least 4 extra supply (and typically 8, since many Zerg units take 2
    supply) if you expect to use the larva immediately.  Note that this
    doesn't account for additional larva that are spawned naturally from
    the hatchery.
    Once a hatchery accumulates 3 or more larva (cocoons, i.e. larva that
    is being used to build units, doesn't count towards this total), it
    stops producing any additional.  This means that if your hatchery has
    3 larva, then it is wasting production ability because it is not
    generating any more.  Try to plan to use larva steadily so that you
    never have 3 larva sitting around; this also means that when your
    queen's larva hatch, you will want to use at least all of those.
    Zerg's economy is very tricky to get used to because larva can either
    be used to produce drones or units.  This is unlike other races which
    can build workers at a steady, set rate.  The decision of whether to
    make drones or units is a major deciding factor for winning games as
    Zerg.  If you build too many drones, then you could be run over by an
    opponent due to lack of units.  If you build too many units, then if
    you do not kill your opponent then you will be behind due to weaker
    economy and will probably lose.
    The general guiding principle for Zerg is to build just enough units
    that you need.  If you are playing defensively (e.g. in the process of
    teching to mutas), your opponent attacks you with marines, and you
    make 12 zergling to fend off the attack and end up with 8 zergling
    remaining, then you should have built fewer zergling and built drones
    instead.  In other words, even though you won the attack, you still
    made a poor economic choice.
    Much anti-Zerg strategy thus revolves around provoking Zerg to build
    more units than necessary.  For example, someone may send an early
    marine to attack you, hoping you'll overreact and build 12 zergling
    instead of 2 to defend.  Even a single early game mistake like this
    can cost you the game because you may never catch up in economy from
    not having those 5 drones.  On the other hand, if your opponent leaves
    you alone and you are able to devote all your larva to drone
    production ("powering" your economy), then you will be significantly
    In SC1, suicide units (e.g. scourge, spider mines) would explode
    harmlessly if they were killed before reaching their targets.  In SC2,
    banelings will always explode (and do friendly splash) even if they
    are killed before reaching their targets.  This means that you should
    generally not manually detonate banelings.  In some cases, you may
    even want to move banelings towards opposing units instead of
    attack-moving so that the banelings can nestle up against the units.
    There has been a lot of testing around when to build your first
    overlord.  Possibilities include OL on 10, OL on 9, OL on 10 followed
    by extractor trick, etc.  Overlord on 9 supply is the best way to go
    economy-wise unless you are doing some sort of early pool or early gas
    Zerg buildings can be built anywhere you have creep.  Since OLs
    can generate creep at lair level, this means that you can hide 
    a tech strcture by having a drone build the structure at the 
    location of the OL's creep.  This is useful for avoiding scans
    or normal scouting (e.g. put a drone and OL in some corner of the
    map; once you reach lair level, have the OL start generating creep
    and immediately start a spire there.  Your opponent will recon
    your base and not see the spire, and hopefully not be ready for
    your mutas).
    Note that if the creep disappears (such as if your OL is killed),
    your building will slowly take damage until it loses all its health
    or the creep is replaced.
    If you are doing the standard build of making 12+ drones before your
    first building, then you have many options
    * 9/10 OL (build your OL when your supply reaches 9)
    * 10/10 OL (build your OL when your supply reaches 10)
    * 11/10 OL (build to 10 drones, then make an extractor, make another 
      drone, cancel extractor, make OL; this allows you to exceed 10 supply).
    * 12/10 OL (same as 11/10 OL but you make two extractors and cancel).
    Of these, 9/10 OL is the best economic option and thus should be used
    by default.  If you forget and accidentally make 10 drones before your
    OL, then 11/10 OL is the next best option.  Note that you do lose some
    minerals from canceling the extractor, and you have do the extractor 
    trick efficiently else you end up losing out on mining time.  To be
    safe, just learn the 9/10 build and leave the extractor trick alone.
    The roach is a short-ranged tank (i.e. high health) unit that does
    good damage, is fairly cheap, and has few ground-based counters.
    Roaches have replaced hydras from SC1 as the staple mass unit.  They
    tear through just about everything, including static defenses, due to
    their high health, and are only easily countered by units that deal
    extra damage to armor, which is coincidentally the other races' super
    units (i.e. marauders and immortals).  Since roaches have natural
    armor, they are also somewhat resistant to marines and zergling.
    Since they can be built very early in the game and easily massed due
    to queen larvae production, they make a scary early attack force.
    * Roaches continue to have effectiveness into late game since they
      make for good stock tank units in any unit combination.  Their
      ability to move while burrowed can also lead to some interesting
      attack possibilities because they can bypass defenses, but they are
      more often just used straight up.
    If you have multiple queens and want to puke on hatcheries, you
    can hotkey all the queens in one group, click "V" to puke on a
    hatch, and the nearest queen with energy will perform the puke.
    This is fine but requires you finding and centering on each
    hatchery, but there is a faster method assuming your queens
    are each near their respective hatcheries.  Assuming you have all 
    your queens in one hotkey:
    * Example:
    a. Hit the hotkey for your queens to select them.
    b. Click "V" (for spawn larvae).
    c. Click BACKSPACE.
    d. Hold down SHIFT.
    e. Click BACKSPACE, left-click.
    f. Repeat step#e until all hatcheries are done.
    Result: All hatcheries are spawning larvae.
    At lair level, you will want your OLs to all be generating creep.
    Generally since my OLs at lair level are clumped around the same
    area, I will want to send them out to new destinations to start
    generating creep.
    * Example:
    a. Select a bunch of OLs (after you have reached lair level).
    b. Press "G".
    c. Clone-command your OLs to various locations:
    d. RIGHT-CLICK on a spot on a minimap
    e. Hold down SHIFT and click on a OL.
    f. Release SHIFT.
    g. Repeat steps#d-f until no OLs are left in your selection.
    Result: One OL will go to each of the spots you clicked on the minimap
    and will start generating creep.
    BTW: "Cloning" is a War2 UI technique for making a group of units all
    do something the same action to different targets, such as assigning
    each worker to mine a different patch on game start.  See my SC1
    beginner's guide for details. Cloning doesn't refer to actually
    copying units.
    I've mentioned this already so here again in case there is any
    confusion about how to use this UI.  Hatcheries have two rally point,
    one is just for workers and one is for your other units.
    * Example:
    a. Select your hatchery.
    b. RIGHT-CLICK on a mineral patch. (this creates a brown-ish line)
    c. RIGHT-CLICK at your choke. (this creates a white-ish line)
    a. Drones will go to your mineral patch via the brown line.
    b. All other units except queens will go to the white line.
    c. Queens will not move anywhere (queens do not follow rally
    Almost all buidings can be rally pointed, including nydus worms.
    This can help manage when you have a flood of units coming out
    of your worm, or if you want drones to come out and immediately
    head towards a mineral patch.
    * Example:
    a. Load your nydus worm with a dozen drones.
    b. Select the worm.
    c. RIGHT-CLICK on a mineral patch.
    d. Press "D" to unload the worm.
    Result: your drones all exit the worm and start mining at (or
       around) that patch.
    Mutas have short range and tend to clump when attacking.  This
    focuses their firepower, which is good, but makes them more
    susceptable to splash and area of effect (such as from psi storm, 
    thors, etc.).  In situations where you do want to clump your mutas,
    simply select all of them and then click on the ground near the
    center of the muta group (within the so-called "magic box").  This
    will cause them to all move to that spot (they will then spread
    slightly, but if you click them together and then attack immediately,
    they will mostly be clumped).
    On the other hand, to keep mutas spread out, simply be sure that
    you never click within the group of mutas when moving them.  If you
    move / attack-move a spot, units will tend to stay in the formation
    they were already in.  However, if you attack-move the mutas at
    a target, the mutas will clump once they start attacking, which is
    no good if you are trying to keep them spread out.  Instead, move
    (not attack-move) the mutas to a spot near the target, and they will
    stay spread out.  SC1 players may remember that this technique was
    used a lot in muta vs. corsair/valkyrie battles, since it makes a
    big difference in the outcome (clumped mutas vaporize, whereas
    spread out mutas can win since they are minimally affected by the
    * Example:
    a. Select a group of mutas.
    b. Right-click them on a spot next to an enemy Thor (but do not 
       click the Thor itself).
    VC. PROTOSS                                            CH5_C
    Chronoboost is an ability cast from the Nexus -- for a small amount of
    energy, you can temporarily speed up unit or research production from
    any building.  This is an amazingly useful and flexible ability for
    Protoss.  It can be applied to any building and will speed up
    productin of whatever is going on in that building (e.g. unit
    production, research speed, etc.).  For starters, chronoboost your
    Nexus during early game to produce probes faster; if you're doing this
    correctly, you should have more probes than Zerg has drones or Terran
    has SCVs through most of early game.
    Later on, you will want to save some energy in case you need to pump
    out gateway units faster or speed up researching key tech, but in
    general if you don't know what to do with chronoboost, use it on your
    Nexus as you pump probes.
    Various advanced tactics revolve around selective use of chronoboost.
    For example, you can chronoboost in order to tech faster
    (e.g. repeatedly chronoboost your warpgate research if you are doinga
    proxy rush, chronoboost your robotics facility to get your immortal or
    colossus out faster than usual).
    * E.G. In general, you should use your first chronoboost as soon as
      your first pylon is done.  Chronoboost your Nexus to produce your
      next probe, and reapply chronoboost once it wears off.  Repeat until
      you need to use chronoboost for some other use.
    Warpgates are a mode of the basic gateway that can produce units
    anywhere within a warp field.  Units build much faster than if made
    from gateways.
    Gateways should be immediately converted to warpgates once that tech
    is researched, and warpgate tech is typically the first thing you
    research once your cybernetics core is finished (and you should
    typically chronoboost the research).  Warpgates take a bit of getting
    used to, but their main advantage is that they allow you to build
    units significantly faster than if you were using normal gateways.
    There are three benfits all of which are very impactful:
    1. Warpgates have a shorter cooldown after building a unit, meaning
    that if you use warpgates even semi-optimally, you will outproduce
    another player who is using normal gateways.
    2. You can warp a unit into any area that is covered by a pylon field
    (or warp prism i.e. "shuttle" field).  This gives tremendous
    flexibility because it doesn't matter where you build your warpgates,
    and you can do proxy attacks just by building a pylon near your
    opponent's base (versus in SC1 where you'd have to build your gateways
    near your opponent, meaning your gateways were vulnerable to being
    destroyed if your attack failed) or using a warp prism (the Protoss
    shuttle).  In fact, if you are able to deploy a warp prism into
    an unseen part of your opponent's base, you can then then use the
    warp field to quickly deploy a lot of troops directly into his base.
    3. Units warp in very quickly.  If you build a unit from a gateway,
    you need to wait until the full unit build time before the unit
    becomes active.  For warpgates, you just click on a location and the
    unit is build almost instantaneously, then the cooldown happens after
    the build.  This allows for quick reinforcement ability.
    * E.G. If you upgrade templar energy, this means that if you're being
    attacked, you can warp in a templar to immediately use storm.
    * E.G. If your base is being attacked, you can immediately warp in
    units right at the site of the attack (such as in your mineral line if
    your probes are being attacked), versus having to rally units to travel
    there from your gateways.
    Learn to use warpgates, and learn to love them.  In case you don't
    want to hotkey your warpgates, use the hardcoded "W" key to select all
    of them, and also note that you'll have an icon on the bottom right
    that shows how many warpgates are available (i.e. not on cooldown).
    You can even chronoboost your warpgates to shorten the cooldown.  The
    only major drawback of warpgates is that you cannot queue units from
    them (since you have to manually place each unit), which makes them a
    bit harder to macro.
    Much of the intricacies around Toss revolve around their unit use,
    so several of these tips will deal with specific units.
    Unlike in SC1, shields no longer take full damage.  They take the same
    damage as the unit itself according to the unit's armor type.  The
    only exception is immortals; this is explained in more detail below.
    Shields recharge MUCH faster than in SC1, but unlike in SC1, they do
    not continue to recharge during combat.  This means that a unit's
    shields will not recharge unless the unit has not taken damage for
    some period of time.  Thus, during battles it is often effective to
    back off a unit that has lost shields and wait a few seconds for the
    shields to start recharging (this is particularly important for
    Immortals since they only take 10 damage max per shot unless they are
    completely drained of shields).
    Carrier massing is no longer as large of a threat as in SC1.
    On the plus side, carriers start with 4 interceptors each and
    do not have to be upgraded to carry 8, so they are ready to use
    once they're built.
    On the minus side, interceptors are much more fragile since they do
    not near-instantly regenerate shields when damaged.  In SC1, it was
    often a lost cause to attack interceptors because as soon as their
    shields were damaged, they would pass back through the carrier on
    their attack run and instantly recharge shields.  In SC2, interceptors
    will not regen unless you order them to stop attacking.  This means
    that attacking interceptors is often a good idea.
    Related to this, motherships are not a super unit either to rush to.
    They are powerful in their own right but are not typically a
    game-ender despite their appearance as a hero unit.
    When starting out playing Protoss, avoid the temptation to tech rush
    to carriers or mothership.  Protoss's standard low and mid-tech units
    are very powerful.
    SC2 no longer has reavers, but colossus fulfill a similar purpose in
    being highly mobile and countering blobs of fragile units
    (e.g. marines, zergling).  Bear in mind a few things when using
    a. Colossus are so tall that they can be hit by anti-air.  This
    includes air->air units such as vikings, as well as missile turrets.
    This makes them difficult to protect because they can be attacked by
    just about anything but can only counter ground.
    b. Colossus can walk up cliffs and bypass chokes.  This gives them
    tremendous flexibility especially when attacking bases.  Note though
    that if you attack-move a clump that includes colossus to a faraway
    location, the colossus will arrive first because they can take a
    straight path.  They move somewhat like air units in this regard since
    they largely ignore terrain.
    c. Get the colossus range upgrade from the robotics support bay.  This
    increases their range greatly and thus makes a huge difference in
    their effectiveness and ability to stay alive.  Once you have a
    support bay, immediately get the colossus upgrade and chrono boost it
    while you build colossus.
    Forcefield ("FF") comes from an odd-looking new gateway unit, the
    sentry.  FF use will win or lose you battles.  They are generally
    indestructible, so they are extremely disruptive.  Here are just a few
    common uses of FF:
    a. FF your ramp to prevent units from getting up your ramp.  This is
    an easy way to hold off a rush.  Alternatively, you can let a few
    attacking units up and then FF the ramp in order to split them from
    the rest, so that the ones you let up can be killed in isolation.
    b. FF in the path of melee units such as zergling and zealots to
    protect your ranged units.  FF use with colossus is particularly
    effective since upgraded colossus have a massive range of 9, which
    means that even ranged units can be kept out of range.
    c. FF into groups of units to disrupt their formation.  Casting FF
    into the middle of a ball of units will force the units aside.
    d. FF behind retreating units to cut them off.  You can even cast
    multiple FFs around a pack of units to enclose them completely.
    Blink is an ability by stalkers to teleport to a nearby point.  It
    is on a short cooldown and allows for limitless possibilities of
    harassment and added effectiveness. 
    * E.G. Move your stalkers right outside your opponent's base, use
    an observer to site into your opponent's base (which is usually
    on high ground), blink in to bypass his choke, kill things, blink
    back out.
    * E.G. When attacked by air units, blink right underneath them so
    that your whole group of stalkers can attack.  This is particularly
    effective against muta hit-and-runs; in fact, as the mutas are
    running away, use blink to catch up to them or blink into the path
    that they are running.
    Void rays ("VRs") do more damage the longer they are attacking
    continuously (caveats: they don't immediately lose their charge if
    they stop attacking or switch targets, but will lose their charge
    eventually).  Fully charged void rays actually counter many of the
    units that would ordinarily beat them (e.g. vikings, hydras);
    attacking a decent sized VR army is most often suicide because units
    melt so quickly.
    Thus, VRs are most vulnerable when they first start attacking.  To
    circumvent this, first attack some target to charge up your VRs.  This
    can even be your own unit (e.g. often an archon, since archons have
    enough health to allow VRs to charge to full).  Or attack destructible
    rocks, or an outlying building (such as a refinary or even your own
    pylon).  Pre-charging VRs will dramatically improve their damage
    output and usability.
    This has not changed from SC1, although there is common confusion
    around this so I will mention it in case.  High Templar psi storm
    does not stack.  If you cast 4 storms in the same spot, those will
    do the same damage as 1 storm.
    Immortals look somewhat like SC1 dragoons but are far different in
    terms of their use and limitations (stalkers are closer to dragoons in
    terms of overall usage).  The immortal is an effective anti-armor unit
    and base cracker.  It has two properties that make it well suited for
    this: (1) when it has shields up, any attack that hits the shields
    will do a maximum of 10 damage (2) it gets a sizeable bonus when
    attacking armored units.  
    The first property is in particular useful against units that do large
    packets of damage slowly; e.g. immortals can march up to siege tanks
    taking very little damage.  You often will want immortals leading your
    other units because they can soak up damage and also because they
    do not have long range.
    Immortals are used in many matchups although they typically require
    micromanagement so that they attack armored units and back off when
    their shields are depleted.  Note that immortals do not attack air.
    Interceptors can be set to auto-build, so that the carrier starts
    rebuilding interceptors as soon as they're destroyed.  This saves
    a lot of pain from the SC1 paradigm of having to select carriers
    and hit "IIIII".
    a. Select all your carriers.
    b. Right-click on the interceptor portrait on your bottom right menu.
    Result: The interceptor portrait should animate, and interceptors
      should automatically rebuild as they're destroyed.
    You can chronoboost a building just by clicking on its location on the
    minimap.  This is not always practical and you may "miss" (i.e. click
    on a gateway instead of your Nexus since the minimap does not make
    your buidings easy to distinguish.
    a. Select all your Nexuses.
    b. Press "C".
    c. Click on a Nexus location on the minimap.
    Result: The targeted Nexus is chronoboosted.
    Void rays can be made to nearly double their damage output by
    switching rapidly between ground and air units.  This is similar
    to SC1 where BCs had separate cooldowns for air and ground attack
    and thus if you clicked fast enough between a ground and air unit,
    your BC could essentially be attacking both at full speed.
    a. Select your void rays.
    b. Click on an enemy air unit.
    c. Click on a ground unit.
    d. Repeat steps#b-c as fast as possible.
    Result: The VRs will do damage to both the air and ground units
       at nearly the same rate as if you attacked either unit alone.
    One annoying issue with blink is that if you select a group of
    stalkers and have them blink to a spot above/below a cliff, often
    the ones in the rear will not succesfully blink there (and will
    also waste their blink cooldown).  To mitigate this, queue the
    stalkers to first move to the spot at the edge of the cliff, then
    blink down, then move away from the cliff.
    a. Select your stalkers.
    b. Hold down SHIFT.
    c. RIGHT-CLICK to the edge of the cliff you want to blink past.
    d. Press "B".
    e. LEFT-CLICK on the spot below the cliff you want to blink to.
    f. RIGHT-CLICK to another spot away from the cliff.
    g. Release SHIFT.
    Result: Your stalkers will each go to the edge of the cliff, blink
    across, and then move to your final destination point.  If any or
    all stalkers cannot do this, they will not waste their blink.
    VI. MULTIPLAYER EXECUTION                                          CH6
    Now that you've learned about basic principles for multiplayer and
    race-specific properties, you may be wondering what the best way is to
    improve in multiplayer.  This section details a path of self-learning
    that you can do on your own.  Ideally, you'd find a friend to help
    teach you how to play, but if that's unavailable then the next best
    way is to adopt a strategy that allows you to learn from eaach game
    and thus improve even in the absence of feedback.
    VIA. THE BIG FIVE PATH OF LEARNING                     CH6_A
    One of the best ways of learning multiplayer is to get someone to
    teach you.  Or you can read tons of guides and watch video casts.  Or
    you can just play and hope you get better with experience.  The
    following presents an ordered way for self-learning; i.e. this should
    help you get better just through your own experiences.  I am not
    saying this is the best way to learn, but since it is a self-help
    route, it has the fewest dependencies (e.g. does not require you to
    depend on another player teaching you or answering your questions).
    Follow these steps in order.
    If you're completely new to SC and RTSs, start off playing at least a
    few missions in the campaign.  This will help get your feet wet to the
    basics of the game.  It may not be helpful to play through the entire
    campaign since it doesn't accurately reflect the multiplayer aspects 
    (more details below), but playing at least a few games is recommended.
    In particular, practice the Big Five in your campaigns; be
    particularly mindful of this because campaign play can be detrimental
    to multiplayer play because campaign play can encourage bad habits.
    For example, since the AI does not attack aggressively, it is common
    in campaign play to just have one barracks and build marines as you
    feel like it, then move out and crush the AI after you've built a
    sizeable force.  This will get you killed in normal play.  Thus, when
    playing campaign as a learning experience for multiplayer, you must
    follow the big five, otherwise skip the campaign and move onto the
    next step.
    Note that some missions in the campaign are rather unique/different,
    versus SC1 campaigns which were mostly just like 1on1's against the
    AI.  In SC2, some campaigns have restricted resources such that you
    don't need to keep making SCVs, other campaigns actually require
    hoarding resources as a victory condition, etc.  So, while practicing
    the Big Five is important, I understand that in some missions you may
    not be able to follow them to the letter.  
    As another caution, the single player campaign contains an RPG-style 
    upgrade path which makes units and behavior far different than their 
    multiplayer equivalents (e.g. vikings can do splash damage, refinaries 
    don't need to have workers on them).  As well, there are many units
    available in the campaigns that are not available in multiplayer (e.g.
    goliaths, medics, predators, science vessels).  This may all give
    you a skewed introduction to multiplayer.
    All said, playing through the campaign as a start to multiplayer is
    still valuable, but is not as much a clear cut win as in SC1.
    You can skip this step if you want to jump right into the multiplayer
    fray, but if you're newer I suggest doing games against the
    A.I. because it is fairly predictable and thus pretty easy to learn
    off of.  Practice the Big Five against the A.I. and when you get to
    the point where you can beat it comfortably, you should have a decent
    chance against human opponents.  If you find yourself losing a lot,
    watch your replay, then play the reverse match where you try to
    emulate what the computer did.  For example, if you play a PvT and
    lose because the comp beat you with marauders, then watch your replay,
    take note of the A.I.'s build order, and try it out yourself in a TvP
    to see how the comp handles it.  Note that at insane difficulty
    level, the AI cheats by awarding itself more resources, so don't play
    at such a high difficulty level that you need to resort to building
    lots of static defense or resorting to cheap exploits in order to win,
    since neither will help you against human opponents.
    When you're ready to start playing against humans, it's critical to
    watch your replays whenever you lose and see what your opponent did to
    beat you.  Just as recommended against the A.I., you can then try
    copying your opponent's build order in your next game.  This isn't a
    failsafe way to improve since your opponents are fallible too so
    perhaps you'll learn some bad habits from copying them, but the key is
    that they are at least better than you are currently because they beat
    you, and thus if you master what they're doing then you will at least
    be doing better than you are currently.
    Note that to master this step, you really want to be losing games.
    Winning games against a human is less of a learning experience since
    you only have a vague sense that you won, and might get the wrong idea
    ("I rushed to battlecruisers and won, this must be a solid tactic"
    versus "I only won by building battlecruisers because my opponent
    sucked so badly that he couldn't defend it.").  So, when you lose,
    look on the bright side -- now you have a replay to watch and learn
    I also suggest skipping the practice league matches.  These are played
    on novice-style maps, which includes destructible rocks closing off
    each main base which prevents early rushes (or limits them to gimmick
    tactics such as reaper rushes) and make the games more island-style.
    If you play practice matches, you will learn all sorts of bad habits,
    and most of your opponents will probably be pretty bad so you may not
    learn much from beating them or being beaten.  Additionally, practice
    matches do not count towards your record, and your record generally
    goes up the more games you play, so you'll likely be at a lower rating
    if you spend a lot of time in practice matches, even if the
    alternative is to jump into real games and lose a lot.
    When learning, it may be tempting to just adopt cheap gimmick tactics
    ("cheese") to beat opponents since those will easily elevate your
    standing.  A simple example is playing Zerg and building an early pool
    ("6-pool") for an all-in zergling rush; this is a lot easier to
    execute than it is to defend against, so you can beat a lot of players
    who are more skilled than you.
    While using gimmick tactics has good short term reward, it will not
    help you become a better SC2 player overall, as most gimmick tactics
    violate the basics of the Big Five.  And eventually, you will get to
    the point where your tactic no longer works so you'll have to throw it
    away and start over again with the next gimmick.  Instead, try to
    adopt a solid flexible strategy.
    2v2's can be a good learning experience because many of the basic
    build orders and strategies are the same as in 1v1, but you have a
    partner who can give you feedback and direction during the game.
    Finding a partner who's willing to help you out may be difficult, but
    I suggest just playing random 2v2's and then friending your partner
    and asking for some followup games if you do well.
    When playing with an ally, be honest that you're a newer player and
    your ally will likely be more patient.  If you don't tell your ally
    that you're new, he may flame you for making basic mistakes;
    mentioning at the outset that you suck will instead hopefully put your
    ally in a teaching mode.
    VII. SPECIFIC MULTIPLAYER TIPS                                     CH7
    The following are specific hints and rules that may help you when
    getting into multiplayer.  These are less about basic principle and
    more about gotchas and things to be aware of when playing multiplayer.
    VIIA. GENERAL                                           CH7A
    SC2 has greatly improved graphics over SC1; this makes it a more
    visually appealing game but the graphics don't necessarily make the
    game easier to play.  Specifically, a lot of the graphics effects are
    distracting or may even make it difficult to tell units apart.
    Running on low graphics setting will make your game look like SC1, but
    your units will be more distinct and you will maximize performance and
    framerate on your computer.
    This may seem out of place in a strategy guide but it's a good 
    principle to keep in mind for your own sanity, so here goes.
    Some of even the best players in SC2 are notorious for being poor
    sports ("bad manner") when they lose.  Particularly as you're
    learning, it's always a good practice to be well behaved ("good
    manner").  If someone creams you, ask them for tips.  If the game is
    really close, it's a perfect opportunity to ask if you can rematch or
    your opponent wants to partner up for some 2v2's.  At the very least,
    start each game with "GL HF" ("Good luck, Have Fun") or respond
    likewise if your opponent does the same, and before leaving say "GG"
    ("Good Game") or "WP" ("Well Played").  Try not to lose your cool, or
    it'll just aggravate you for no reason and possibly make you so angry
    (go on "tilt") that you can't concentrate the next game.
    Also be sure to be a good sport even if your opponent or partner
    starts to flame you.  Remember that the internet is full of people of
    all ages and dispositions.  Do not hold online players to the same
    standards as your real life friends; if you're an adult, in
    particular, note that many online players may be half your age.  In
    real life, if someone half your age comes up to you and insults you,
    you would probably not respond in kind or to the same level of
    immaturity.  Bear in mind the same when online.  Do not let others'
    poor behavior ruin your own experience and enjoyment.
    If you're worried about your record, play custom or FFA games, which
    are unranked.  These will allow you to practice strategies without the
    pressure of a loss affecting your rating.  That said, don't get too
    comfortable with FFAs, because the types of tactics plus the
    randomness of FFAs can make them an unreliable measure of actual good
    Better players will often chat in games, particularly in early game
    while they are idle and waiting for workers to finish and such.  There's
    nothing malicious about this (usually it is just for social reasons),
    but don't feel pressured to chat back if you are new.  Focus on your
    game, respond with short but not unfriendly messages if you have to.
    Note also that your opponent may chat during times that are idle for
    him but not necessarily yourself (e.g. maybe he's supply blocked
    and waiting around while his depot finishes, whereas you are in the
    middle of putting together a drop on his base).
    VIIB. MAP FEATURES                                     CH7_B
    Towers give fairly large sight range and are generally near
    well-traveled areas.  You will generally want to try to control the
    towers.  As Zerg, this is trivial since you have cheap zerglings that
    you can send to the towers.  With other races, use a worker or marine.
    Bear in mind that air units do not control towers, so you will need to
    use a ground unit.
    Even if you don't want to commit a unit to watching a tower, you can
    also just walk units past the towers occasionally to gain split-second
    sight.  This can tell you in particular if there are buildings around
    (since those will stay indicated on the map even after you leave the
    tower).  In particular, when sending out your first scout, if you
    are on a map where there is a tower on the way between you and your
    opponent, right-click on the tower and then into your opponent's base,
    and your worker will stop to activate the tower along its way.  This
    can warn you if your opponent is doing some sort of proxy attack (i.e.
    making a building near your base).
    You cannot hit uphill units if you do not have uphill sighting
    (e.g. an air unit/building or a ground unit that's on high elevation).
    If you expand in early game to somewhere that has a cliff (e.g. some
    natural expansions are flush against cliffs), be sure that you will
    soon have uphill sight.  Beware that even certain early game units can
    get up a cliff (i.e. reapers).
    Some maps have small brush areas around the corners of your base.  You
    won't be able to see what's on the other side of these, so they are
    easily exploited for proxy pylons or other sorts of in-base tactics.
    At earliest convenience, build a structure or place a unit in that
    area to maintain vision on it.
    Some maps have destructible rocks in your base which open up an
    additional entrance point if destroyed.  Rocks cannot be repaired, so
    your opponent can whittle them down gradually or all at once.  Place
    units or structures near the rocks so you can spot when your opponent
    is trying to break in through them.
    VIIC. DEALING WITH RUSHES                              CH7_C
    Attacking early ("rushing") was the bane of novice players in SC1.
    War3 (and other RTSs) compensated for this somewhat by having
    structures be useful for defensive purposes (e.g. your nightelf
    barracks in War3 has an attack).  SC2 allows for the same rushing
    opportunities as SC1; these fall broadly into the category of normal
    early attacks ("rushes") and all-in attacks ("cheese").  Although
    losing to rushing and cheese can be fairly frustrating, learning how
    to deal with either (or do them yourself as appropriate) will
    ultimately make you a better player.
    Normal rushes should be defensible.  If someone makes marines through
    a standard build and sends them to attack, then if you are teching to
    battlecruisers without defense then you should lose; this is basic
    common sense strategy.  To defend against normal rushes, scout your
    opponent frequently and be sure that your unit count is similar to
    his.  If you have many more units than him, then attack and win.  This
    mechanism keeps players honest, because jumping tech in early game
    *should* be a risk otherwise all games would just be battlecruisers
    and carriers and boringness.
    Rushes also give you the opportunity to end the game as early as
    possible; e.g. if you are playing against an opponent who is just not
    building any units, then you should be able to attack early and finish
    the game and get onto your next opponent versus waiting 30 minutes to
    kill him later.
    All-in rushes (6-pool, 8-rax, etc.), i.e. "cheese" attacks, are of the
    sort where if it doesn't succeed, then generally the cheeser will
    lose.  These are high-risk, high-reward attacks.  They are tough for
    newer players to get used to because they are much harder to defend
    than to execute, and thus are commonly considered "cheap".
    There's no real advice I can give off the bat except that when you
    lose to a rush, watch your replay so you figure out what your opponent
    did, and then adjust your scouting so you can see them coming.  For
    example, if you scout your Protoss opponent and don't see a gateway
    building near his pylon, then he is either really bad, or he's built a
    pylon and gateway somewhere near your base.
    As a general rule, learn how to defend against cheese but resist the
    temptation to rely on cheese to win.  Cheese are named as such because
    they require doing something out of the ordinary and sacrificial in
    order to secure an easy win.  It is far better in the long run to
    learn standard playing mechanics.
    Many games particularly on higher levels, and particularly if your
    opponent chooses random, involve proxy attacks.  A proxy attack is
    where your opponent builds a structure near your base so that he can
    attack earlier, or so he can setup defensive structures before you
    have units to take them out.  Common proxies include reapers (build
    the rax near the opponent's cliff, rally the reaper into his base),
    offensive cannons (build a pylon inside the opponent's base but not
    within sight range, then start buiding cannons into the base), even
    offensive spine crawlers (build a hatchery at the opponent's ramp,
    build spine crawlers to lock him from exiting his ramp, build a queen
    to generate creep into the base and heal the crawlers).
    Proxies are typically much more difficult to counter than they are to
    execute and they feel "cheap".  Once an offensive cannoning has
    started in your base, it is difficult to counter.  Scout early and
    look around the fog of war in your base to make sure there are no
    proxies going up.  Also bear in mind that a proxy is usually an all-in
    attack where if you beat it, the opponent will be so behind
    economically or on tech that you will win.  So even if that super-
    early reaper kills 4 or 5 probes, you may stil be even in the game
    economically, so don't lose heart.
    VIID. ALLIED GAMES                                     CH7_D
    This section covers the basics of how to play as a team.  SC2 makes
    many improvements and changes in relation to SC1 in order to make team
    play more seamless and interesting.
    Past a certain time in the game, resources can be freely shared
    without penalty.  You can send any amount of minerals or gas to your
    partner instantly.  This allows for some rather aggressive strategies,
    such as having one partner just focus on economy and then feed his
    partner who builds the military units.  If in a team game you get hit
    by an impossibly large tech rush (e.g. a dozen mutas a few minutes
    into the game), then it is likely that your opponents shared
    You can share control with any of your allies, such that they can
    build and control your units (although they can't build structures).
    This can create some advantageous situations since coordinating team
    attacks in SC1 can be difficult when all players are separately
    controlling parts of an army that is trying to attack all at once.
    If you are playing with a trusted partner, I suggest making the habit
    of sharing control near game start once you assign your workers etc.,
    since that's often idle time.
    Shared control also allows you to split duties in various ways.  For
    example, if your partner is better at microing and exectuing attacks,
    then you could just have him control your combined forces during
    attacks while you do base management.  Other examples:
    * As Terran, so Zerg can take a couple of medivacs with
      his group of mutas.
    * As Terran, so Zerg can scan to place his nydus.
    * As Terran, so your ally can hotkey your CC and use scan.
    * As Terran, so Toss can calldown MULEs to repair his units.
    * As Terran, so your ally can lower your depots if you are walling
      off a shared choke.
    * As Protoss, so your ally can take one of your observers.
    If a teammate drops or leaves the game, any ally can fully control
    him, including building units and structures.  The teammate no longer
    has his own resource pool, though; instead, (1) all resources he
    gathers are split amongst allies (2) allies who build using the
    teammate's units/buildings use their own resources.  In a 2v2
    situation, this is fairly uncomplicated, in that if your teammate
    drops then you simply control both you and him with your total shared
    resources.  In a 4v4 situation, though, your teammate's resources will
    be equally split amongst the other 3 of you although you will pay full
    cost for building him.  This presents some interesting and possibly
    advantageous situations.
    Similarly, if an opponet drops, do not consider this an easy win.  In
    fact, some strategies call for one partner to deliberately drop at
    game start because this bypasses the time restriction on sharing 
    resources (i.e. you can't normally share resources in the first X
    minutes of the game).  A Zerg/X team for example can have the X
    player drop, thus giving Zerg immediate resources that he can use
    towards putting down a super early spawning pool.
    Don't quit early (i.e. "rage quit") just because you got wiped out.
    In many circumstances, your partner can still come back and win.  You
    can still be helpful by having him share control so that you can
    essentially play through his units.  And of course, give him all your
    SCVs can repair both Terran and Protoss mechanical units.  Medivacs
    can heal Terran, Zerg, and Protoss organic units.  This makes for some
    interesting strategies since ordinarily Toss units can never heal
    non-shield damage.  As a Terran player, you could even calldown MULEs
    to heal your Toss partner's void rays in the middle of a battle.  Or
    right-click a medivac on your Zerg partner's mutalisks so that your
    medivac follows and heals the mutas.  Or select a group of SCVs, turn
    on auto-repair, and right-click on a colossus so that the SCVs follow
    the colossus and heal it and neighboring units.
    You do not have to explicitly go on allied chat.  Anything you type
    into chat will be displayed only to allies, and you will have to use
    SHIFT to send a message to everyone.  Communicate frequently and at
    least give your partner an indication of what you're building,
    e.g. "going marauders to start."  Of course, if you have voice, use
    You can ping the minimap, which will show the location prominently for
    you and your allies.  Use this to coordinate rally points, attacks,
    scan targets, etc.  For example, if I see opponents coming towards my
    base, I'll often ping right on top of them so my ally sees too.
    If you think 1v1's are full of cheese and proxy attackd, just wait
    until you get into 2v2's.  Certain combinations on certain maps are
    extraordinarily difficult to counter, as these generally involve both
    opponents doing an economy-sacrificing build to hit one partner early
    and take him out.  These are depressing and cheap to lose to, but good
    scouting, conservative builds, and lots of skill will help you be able
    to defeat these.  Many 2v2 teams that do cheese builds aren't actually
    very good and thus will fall apart if you survive their initial
    attack.  As always, try not to adopt cheese builds.  A simple 9rax
    proxy reaper + 9pool will probably get you all the way up to diamond
    so sure it's nice if you want good stats to show off, but it's not
    goind to teach you to be a better player in the long run.
    Headsets make communication a lot easier and faster.  Additionally, if
    you rely on typing, you may accidentally make mistakes and hit keys
    outside of chat (e.g. I once thought I was entering chat and hit "T"
    which promptly stimmed my entire marine force outside of combat and
    lead to me losing the game).  It is hard to overstate how much of an
    advantage it is if you and your partner are communicating over voice
    (or playing in the same room), as this makes coordination very easy
    and quick.
    SC2 has its own built-in voice support.  I have my mic set to
    auto-gain and triggered automatically versus by holding down a key.
    In the main menu, when you talk, you should see white bars appear to
    the left of your portrait.  In game, when you talk, you should see
    your name appear on the top right with a little voice icon.
    For others to hear you, they may need to crank up their volume or turn
    their other settings down, because the voice volume can get easily
    drowned out by SC's normal sounds.
    If you can't get SC's voice to work properly, you can also use Skype,
    Ventrillo, etc. instead.  Those all are compatible with SC, just be
    sure to turn off SC's voice (i.e. mute your mic).
    VIII. RESOURCES                                                    CH8
    In the days of SC1, there were fewer definitive guides and communities
    around understanding and teaching the game.  Youtube didn't even exist
    back then!  SC2 is a whole different matter given the larger player
    base, more established pro game scene, and large beta community.  I
    have done my best in this guide to present basics in a comprehensive
    fashion, but there are numerous other resources out there for
    bettering your gameplay.  I will list just a few of the more
    accredited ones here.
    1. DAY[9] DAILIES
    These are videocasts from Day[9], a top SC player.  These videocasts
    typically go through top-level replays and are full of useful
    commentary.  Day[9]'s videocasts are widely referenced and discussed
    in the SC community.
    This website and associated forums is populated by top SC players.
    There is a wealth of information here from discussions and replay
    archives.  The forums are high quality because the moderators maintain
    high standards for posting and etiquette.  Please read through the
    posting guidelines carefully before participating in discussion or
    starting your own threads!
    This youtube collection contains replays/commentary of top-level players.
    This is a forum created by Husky and HDStarcraft.
    IX. OFF TOPIC                                                       CH9
    The following section contains non-multiplayer-strategy information
    that I do not think is worth creating another guide for, but is 
    useful to know.  I am sure that once there are more guides out there,
    this section will be overshadowed by other guides that look into these
    areas in more detail.  But for now, here you go.
    This has nothing to do with multiplayer strategy, but I'll throw it in
    here just as a bonus for your getting this far through the guide.  You
    can unlock a certain portrait by beating 7 insane comps in a FFA.
    This is ordinarily a bit challenging because insane comps get a
    resource bonus and thus it's difficult to prevent yourself from
    getting overwhelmed.  Of course, there are tricks you can use, making
    this a fairly easy achievement for either Terran or Protoss.
    Before you start reading this the particular strategy I outline, note
    the alternate suggestions below; playing Terran on Lava Flow is for
    example probably an easier way of accomplishing this achievement.
    1. SETUP                                             
    Make sure you follow these steps exactly as listed.  If you
    make the game incorrectly, you will not get the achievement.
    * From the main menu, choose "Multiplayer" (not single player
      versus A.I.!).  To reiterate: You must create a Multiplayer
      game, not a Single Player game, to get this achievement.
    * Create a Custom Game.
    * Select the 8-player map "Extinction".
    * Set your own race to "Protoss".
    * Add 7 AIs.
    * Set all AIs to "Zerg".
    * Set difficulty for all AIs to "Insane".
    * Don't change the handicaps (i.e. leave them at "100%").
    * Set game type to "FFA".
    * Set the game speed to whatever you want (e.g. if you're
      having trouble, slow down the game).
    2. PLAY
    The general idea is to secure both island expansions on the map
    (i.e. the northeast and southwest ones that contain resources), wait
    for the computers to kill each other off, and then cleanup the
    remaining computers using a large unstoppable fleet.  Specifically,
    the comp has never been good at handling large fleets of carriers
    (even if this changes in some later patch, the primary strategy of
    taking islands then building up a large fleet should still stay
    You will eventually lose your main base, but you'll want to keep it
    alive as long as possible so that you can harvest resources.  This is
    easiest to do if your starting location is one of the 4 spots that's
    closest to one of the islands, so if you're having trouble then
    restart until you get one of those spots (yes, it is a pain to setup
    the game each time from start).
    The build order I use is gateway, assimilator, forge, 3 cannons,
    cybernetics core, assimilator, robotics.  Build pylons and nonstop
    probes during this, using chronoboost just on your probe production.
    Put 3 probes on each gas.
    * Once my forge is done, I'll put down 3-4 cannons immediately and
      stop production (e.g. workers and other structures) to save up money
      for them.  I'll continue making a few cannons as money allows
      afterward, towards a total of 6-8 but no more than that.
    * Once my cybernetics core is done, I'll make non-chronoboosted
      sentries from my gateway and rally my sentries inside my mineral
    * Once my robotics is done, I'll make a warp prism, and then
      non-chronoboosted immortals.
    Place your buildings around your Nexus so that you enclose your probes
    and compact your base as much as possible (this is called "simcity").
    Generally, build your normal buildings and pylons on the outside
    (i.e. leaving two squares, i.e. enough room for a pylon, between your
    gateway and your Nexus), then put your cannons flush against the
    Nexus.  This way, melee units will have to walk through or around my
    buildings to attack my cannons.  A typical setup may look like this:
       A  M
      P    M
      PCNN   M
     FFCNN   M
    if I'm expecting attacks to come from the bottom left.  C=cannons,
    N=nexus, O=cybernetics core, G=gateway, F=forge, M=minerals,
    A=assimilator, P=pylon. Note how my cannons are sandwiched between
    buidings such that they are generally flush on all sides whenever
    The cannons are capable of stopping any early-game attack.
    Generally, roaches and zergling will start being thrown at you pretty
    quickly, often from your 2 adjacent opponents at the same time.  As
    long as my 3-4 cannons are up and well-placed, I can hold off these
    attacks with no problem.
    The sentries are there to help against the larger attacks, mostly by
    using forcefield to keep roaches and zergling away from my cannons and
    away from getting into my mineral line.  You don't need sentries (you
    could just build more cannons) but they are fun to use in this
    Later on, I make immortals for stronger anti-roach, since immortals
    destroy roaches.
    Once your warp prism is done, your main base is expendable.  Do not
    continue to spend money on your main (i.e. cut probe, unit, and cannon
    production) because you will want to start saving money for your
    carrier fleet.  It's not a good idea to try to spend more resources
    keeping your main alive because the waves of attacks will start getting
    ludicrously huge (remember, the comp on insane difficulty gets a 
    resource bonus) so it's very difficult to defend your base and you
    really don't need to since by this time you shouldn't have much
    resources left to mine there anyway.
    Note that while this is all happening, most of the comp AIs will be
    eliminating each other.  You will start getting messages that the comp
    AI is asking to surrender and whether you accept; answer whatever you
    like, it doesn't matter for the achievement.
    Once your warp prism is done, load 2 probes into it (or more if your
    main base is about to fall and you want to save your probes), and send
    it to each island.  Be sure not to fly over other mains because queens
    will shoot down your prism.  Your first island should be easy to get
    to, particularly if your start was adjacent to it.  For the far-away
    island on the other side of the map, have your prism move flush
    against the sides of the map; e.g. if I started bottom left then I'll
    move my prism due south until it hits the bottom of the map, then east
    until it hits the bottom right corner, then north to get to the
    Unload a probe at each island, build a Nexus, and then some pylons.
    Make sure the pylons cover the edges of your island so you can place
    cannons against the edges.  Build a forge at one island (since the
    forge at your main will be destroyed soon) and then a couple of
    stargates and a fleet beacon.  As soon as your initial pylons are
    done, build as many cannons as you can afford along the edges of your
    base (you'll need these to prevent units from dropping into your
    base).  You'll also want to build a cybernetics core because the
    one at your main base will be destroyed soon, and you need the core
    for air upgrades.
    Once your island expansions are up, your main concern is to make sure
    that the comps do not use overlords to drop units into your expansion.
    Having around 6-8 cannons in each expansion is more than enough.  The
    comp will generally just build lots of roaches and hydras because it
    is not smart enough to know that it needs air to break into your
    island.  It's o.k. to build more than 8 cannons if you need to, just
    be sure not to overdo it because your islands have limited space and
    you have somewhat limited money to work with (you shouldn't run out of
    resources unless you go crazy though, so don't sweat it).
    Build up your carrier fleet and be sure to get all upgrades (air wpns,
    air armor, shields).  Also get a mothership as soon as possible since
    the cloaking will protect your cannons.  Typically, I will just build
    my air fleet from one island, and have the other island be pure
    cannons and pylons.
    You really shouldn't have any problems here on out.  Once you reach
    roughly 200 supply worth of carriers + mothership, attack-move your
    fleet out and you should cleanup the remaining computers (typically
    there are 2 left max) with no problem.  Be sure to have interceptors on
    auto-build.  If you do start running low on resources, use your
    mothership to recall some probes from an island onto an expansion spot
    and then have those probes build a Nexus (or use your prism to
    transport probes).  You may also want to split up your carrier force
    since the comps have a tendency to try to build or rebuild all over
    the map as you're destroying one base after another.
    That's it!  Once you've eliminated all the comps, you'll get a ton of
    achievements and the Orlan portait will be unlocked.  Right-click on
    your portrait, select "Change portrait", select the Orlan portrait,
    and gloat to your friends.
    If you're having trouble beating this as Protoss, you can also try
    with Terran.  For this case, load up all your SCVs at game start
    (e.g. hit "O" on your command center) and float your CC to the nearest
    expansion island.  Tech quickly to starport, use a medivac to expand
    to the opposite island expansion.  Build up to BCs and Ravens, using
    the Ravens for their point defense capability since this will protect
    your BCs from damage.  As your BCs are damaged, you can either return
    them to one of your bases for repair or calldown MULEs near your BCs
    (be sure to set them to auto-repair).
    [credit: avi]
    Map: Lava Flow Set your race as Terran, the computer races can be
    random if you want.
    Load all of your SCV's onto the CC's, lift off and land into a nearby
    island. The islands have 2 resource bases each!
    From that, focus in building 2 saturated CC's and then build as many
    battlecruisers as you can.
    Another useful tactic is to build a medivac and transport an SCV to
    the other island to repeat the process of building two CC's and
    saturate them.
    When you have full population of battlecruisers, is your time to hunt
    down the remaining computer/computers. (In my case two computers
    remained in the game)
    [/credit: avi]
    IXA. BRUTAL SINGLE PLAYER CAMPAIGN                     CH9_B
    First, this does not contain heavy spoilers, so it is generally
    safe to read.  Everyone has s different definition of spoiler
    so I can't guarantee that you won't read something here that
    will ruin something for you, but I do not believe that this
    reveals any major twists or surprises.
    Second, just to be clear, you gain no direct multiplayer benefit
    from playing single player.  (e.g. It's not like you will get
    extra units or such in multiplayer if you finish single player.)
    The only thing you get from single player is additional portraits,
    which are purely cosmetic.
    The brutal campaign is a good challenge although of course not
    impossible.  One of the more pressing issues though is that because
    you cannot take back your upgrade choices (i.e. your laboratory
    research route, armory upgrades, etc.), you are stuck with the
    decisions you make.  Although you should be able to win even with
    arbitrary upgrade choices, the final missions (particularly the final
    mission itself) is far easier to handle if you made good choices.
    This guide will thus cover some "gotchas" that you may not be aware of
    during your playthrough.  I will not try to dictate all your choices;
    instead, I'll just mention the ones that seemed the most important (or
    rather, are the most likely to not make you feel like kicking the
    computer if you didn't choose them).
    As a warning, it took me 6 hours to finish the final mission
    because I made suboptimal upgrade choices (I was chose an upgrade
    path that would most resemble multiplayer play, so I didn't get
    upgrades such as the friendly tank splash reduction).
    1. GENERAL
    A. Offline doesn't count
    You can play missions offline (i.e. are not connected to the internet
    and choose "Play Offline", but you will not get achievements from them
    nor will they count towards actual mission completion.  So if you
    played a mission offline, you will have to play it again online for it
    to count.  In case you forgot which missions you did offline, just
    check the achievements and "highest difficulty completed" tab on the
    mission selector.  If they have none, then that mission didn't count.
    I believe this factors into missions if you play *any* part of them
    offline; e.g. if you start them offline and then continue online, you
    will also not get the achievement.
    B. Mercenary Achievement
    You get the mercenary achievement by hiring all the available
    mercenaries.  Note that if you don't want to actually use the 
    mercenaries and waste credits on them, you can just wait until
    you have enough credits, save your game, hire all of the mercenaries, 
    get the achievement.
    A. Mission completion
    Contrary to the achievement requirement, you only need to complete
    the 26 main missions (25 normal plus 1 secret) in order to unlock
    the Kerrigan portrait.  This does mean though that you will have
    to play both branches of the missions that give you a choice
    (e.g. kill the infected terran colonies or save them).  If you
    missed a mission or want to play the other branch, choose the
    mission selector on the Bridge console.  You can complete missions
    in any order; missions will not go away or become more difficult
    or alter the storyline if you choose them in a particular order,
    just take on the missions as you see fit.
    B. Storyline choices
    When you need to make a mission choice, you're stuck with your choice
    for the rest of the campaign (e.g. you can have either ghosts or
    spectres but not both).  However, non-Char mission choices are super
    critical, so feel free to choose whichever path based on your
    storyline preference.  The Char mission choice is a big deal, more
    info on that below.
    C. Secret mission
    There are 25 normal missions in the campaign, which includes 2
    branching missions.  There is 1 secret mission which you will
    get after destroying the Science Facility on the bottom-right
    corner of the "Media Blitz" mission.  The science facility is
    easy to spot and can be destroyed by any unit, but note that
    your units will not auto-target it.
    If you missed activating the secret mission and are already
    on Char, you must, at some point, reload to the Media Blitz
    mission, destroy the science facility, and finish the mission.
    The secret mission will then appear as a normal selectable
    mission on the Bridge.  In other words, you cannot play
    this mission through the Char mission selector.  This means
    that if you do not have a save around the Media Blitz 
    mission, you may be out of luck and have to start over.
    If you've finished the campaign and missed the secret mission, you can
    reload to the Media Blitz mission, play that, get the secret mission,
    play that, and you'll get your achievement immediately on completion.
    It's not like you have to play through the rest of the campaign again
    just because you reloaded to Media Blitz.
    D. No more credits or research after Char
    You will not receive any more credits or research after you
    enter Char.  Thus, if you want to be in the best shape possible,
    complete all the missions before Char before heading to Char.
    These are the upgrades I recommend as near mandatory for
    putting yourself through the least amount of pain for the
    later missions, particularly the last one.  I recommend not
    making upgrade choices until you absolutely need them (i.e.
    if you are failing a mission or a mission is much more
    difficult because you are missing an upgrade).  You can't
    take back your upgrades, so be conservative about them.  In
    particular, save credits and research going into the final
    mission since you'll probably end up playing it a few times
    and then realize what you need to upgrade to beat it.  Anyway,
    here's my suggestions:
    A. Laboratory
    * Zerg regenerative bio-steel.
    B. Armory
    * Marines: Both upgrades.
    * Medics: Stabilizer medpacks.
    * Marauder: Both upgrades.
    * Bunker: Both upgrades.
    * Turret: Both upgrades.
    * SCV: Dual-fusion welders.
    * Building: Both upgrades.
    * Siege tank: Both upgrades.
    * Viking: Both upgrades.
    C. Mercenaries
    * Tanks
    * BC
    * Vikings
    A. Marines and Medics Rule
    Marine/med will win you many games even on brutal.  Note that both
    medivacs and medics can heal infantry, although you'll generally just
    want to rely on medics since they're cheaper.  Also be sure to protect
    your medics since the AI will target them first.  A simple strategy
    then is to just get a few rax some with reactor and others with tech,
    build marines and medics and the occasional marauder or firebat,
    research the infantry upgrades at the engineering bay.
    B. Ghosts and nukes are great for base removal
    Some missions require destroying bases that are fairly well defended
    (e.g. Haven's Fall, where you have to eradicate infested colonies).
    Using a couple of ghosts and nukes is a super easy way to accomplish
    this, since the AI will not automatically move overseers to find your
    ghost.  Nukes are cheap and build quickly, so you can just make a few
    silos and work a ghost in gradually into a base, nuking the outlying
    spore colonies etc.  For this strategy, you will want to purchase the
    upgrade to allow ghosts to be cloaked without energy use.
    C. Mercenary Use
    Mercenaries are very useful because they are generally more powerful
    for the same supply, are built near instantaneously, and bypass the
    tech requirements (e.g. you don't need a factory to calldown tanks).
    This all allows you to quickly reinforce your base or create units
    that are needed on demand.  For example, if you are attacked and are
    short on defense then calldown the tank mercs.  The battlecruiser merc
    is particularly useful since you can calldown a BC whenever you need
    it versus tying up the resources for a long time while the BC builds.
    Also bear in mind that the merc building can be rally pointed just
    like any other building.
    You have a choice between not having to deal with nydus worms, or not
    having to deal with air, in the final mission depending on what you
    pick for the second to last Char mission.  I chose to play without
    air and haven't yet tried the other path.  Both paths are tough.
    A. Kill the nydus worms
    This will mean that you will deal with waves of mutas and broodlords.
    Your turrets and vikings will take care of the mutas just fine (you
    did get the turret and viking upgrades, yes?), so you only really need
    to worry about the broodlords.  That said, the broodlords can get
    really annoying.  There is also an air boss near the end.
    B. Kill the air
    This will mean that you won't have any spire units to deal with during
    the mission (although you will still get dropped by OLs once), but
    nydus worms will randomly spawn at various points of the map and send
    waves of units at you.  And these aren't your ordinary nydus worms;
    they send continuous MASSIVE streams of units and sometimes appear far
    from your base guarded by sunkens and spores such that they are tough
    to take out.  The streams of units are colored differently on your
    minimap so you know just how much you are suffering from leaving the
    worms alive.
    This mission made me hate SC2 for a while since I had committed to the
    wrong upgrades and chose to deal with nydus worms, but it won't be so
    bad for you if you follow my advice.  This advice will cover the nydus
    worms version (i.e. no air, but you have to deal with nydus worms)
    only; you'll have to adjust for the air route although again I believe
    it is easier and the same principles hold.
    A. Build a kill zone at each choke
    Ah, back to SC1-style turtling play.  Build bunkers backed by siege
    tanks at each choke.  You will want to completely bunker off each
    choke (e.g. a marine should not be able to move to the other side of
    the bunkers), fill the bunkers with marauders, and then spend the rest
    of your supply on SCVs and tanks.  By end game, your chokes should
    literally be packed with a monstrous number of tanks such that units
    other than the boss will not be able to get close.  Be sure to use the
    merc tanks too since you'll eventually be supply capped and the merc
    tanks do more damage for the same supply.
    The two chokes should be recessed towards your base such that they do
    NOT cover the high ground leading to the artifact.  The reason to
    recess the chokes is that they're close enough to your base so that
    your units can rally there quickly, and the tanks can cover parts of
    your base (e.g. such as when units are dropped into your base).
    This does leave the artifact exposed, but generally units will leave
    it alone and attack your choke instead.  In later game, I build a
    couple of planetary fortresses and bunkers on the artifact area to
    protect it.
    You should always have 3-5 SCVs (at least) at each choke on
    auto-repair to repair your bunkers and tanks.  And oh yeah, you did
    get the 2x repair upgrade I suggested yes?  And you got the tank
    splash damage reduction too so that you tanks don't kill your bunkers
    and the artifact with their splash?
    90% of finishing this mission successfully is just setting up a tight
    choke properly.
    B. Build order
    * Put 3 workers on each of the 3 gas.
    * Put remaining workers on minerals.
    * Calldown MULE onto one of the minerals.
    * Start production of SCVs and hotkey your CC.
    * Start add-ons for your rax and factory.
    * Move your starport to behind your minerals (i.e. get it out of the
      way) and start its add-on.
    * Build two more factories, and then add-ons for those.
    * Fill the bunkers on the artifact plateau with the nearby infantry.
    * Salvage all other bunkers.
    * Grab 3 SCVs per choke and start building a row of bunkers across
      each choke, flush against each other and the terrain so that no
      units can pass through.  Leave the SCVs behind the bunkers and put
      them on auto-repair.
    * When the factories are done, start building tanks.  Rally half
      the factories to one choke and other half to the other.
    * When the choke bunkers are done, fill them with assorted infantry,
      ideally marauders but anything will do.
    * Grab all infantry and medics that are not in your bunkers, hotkey
      them, and start group them in the middle of your base.
    * Grab your banshees, hotkey them, and group them in the middle of
      your base.
    * Grab your BCs, hotkey them, and group them in the middle of
      your base.
    * Start vehicle weapons upgrade from your armory (build one or two
      as needed).
    * Save your game.
    You may be able to get this done before the first major attacks come.
    Your mobile infantry/BC/banshee army is there to reinforce your chokes
    before you have critical tank mass, and to take out nydus worms that
    spawn in your base (the BCs can take out the ones that spawn near
    but outside your base).   I may focus on rallying most of my tanks
    to one choke, and having my mobile force guarding the other, during
    early game.
    From here on out, you will mostly be doing the following:
    * Build SCVs and calldown MULEs.
    * Build tanks and send to either choke.
    * Upgrade tank weapons.
    * Calldown merc tanks whenever the cooldown is available.
    * Replace any SCVs that die at your chokes.
    C. Save the artifact use for the boss
    Since you will often be swarmed with nydus units when the boss
    appears, save your towers for when she gets near your front lines so
    that your forces can focus on just attacking it.  I believe the tower
    also damages it.
    D. Remove the nydus worms... if you can
    The nydus worms appear at various parts of the map randomly.  They are
    not destroyed by artifact use.  They progressively spit out tougher
    units including ultralisks if they are not destroyed.  They are a
    major reason why this mission is hard and they are not easy to remove
    if they appear far from your base, given that there is a vicious cycle
    where you have to devote more units to defense to take out the units
    that the nydus worms spew, which leaves you fewer units to take out
    the worms themselves...
    I used my two initial BCs plus the merc BC to go around killing nydus
    worms using yamato.  Be careful not to let your BCs die from hydras or
    the boss.  Apart from the BCs, you may also want to try a group of
    banshees or medivacs full of infantry.  One thing to try is to get the
    marine pods calldown upgrade to send marines to the worms if you have
    enough barraks.  You will generally want to use the artifact to clear
    the worms, then kill them before new units start arriving (note that
    this violates the earlier rule though of saving the artifact for the
    E. Keep your BCs away from the boss
    You'll learn this the hard way if not, but the boss has an attack that
    destroys any single unit and has pretty good range.  Keep your BCs
    away.  You can try using yamato and then immediately running away,
    although strangely I don't find that yamato makes much of a difference
    in this fight.
    F. Build tons of SCVs
    You should know this already from the Big Five.  You have a ton of
    resources in your base and will need SCVs both for mining and repair,
    so keep building SCVs.  You may want to get the research upgrade that
    allows for two SCVs to be trained simultaneously.  Of course, use your
    MULEs too; you won't need to use your scanner so just use all the
    energy for MULEs.
    G. There is one annoying OL drop to counter
    If you have spare minerals, start building turrets around your base
    after approximately the second boss attack.  There is one scripted
    mass OL drop event that occurs, and it is annoying to deal with since
    you will mostly have tanks and thus no anti-air at this point.  The
    OLs drop all sorts of stuff right into your mineral line which will
    cause your tanks to blow away your SCVs (you did get the friendly tank
    splash reduction upgrade, yes?).
    Hopefully this gives you enough information to beat the brutal
    campaign or at least make the right choices.  Once you finish all the
    missions, you should get your nice Kerrigan portrait as well as other
    portraits from related achievements.  Enjoy!
    IXA. Q&A WITH SHOCKWAVE                                CH9_C
    In response to the flood of emailed questions I've been getting,
    here's some details about my gaming habits in case you're interested.
    Most of you will find this silly and self-indulgent which is why I put
    this at the end of the guide :-).
    1. Are you a pro player?
    No.  I'm too old and crusty to be a hotshot SC player.  Nor do I play
    nearly enough.  My APM is typically not stellar, I violate all my own
    rules when playing, etc.  I was a fairly reputable WoW player (I wrote
    one of the definitive Hunter PvP guides, captained the top-rank 5v5
    arena team on my server, GM'd the 2nd rank alliance guild on my
    server), but for SC I am more of a theorist than a pro.  I am like the
    basketball coach who knows a lot about strategy but would get my butt
    kicked on the court by most decent players.  I am really not that
    good, seriously.
    2. What race do you play?
    At the time of this submission, I play mostly Terran.  I was a Zerg
    player through most of Beta.  I like Zerg because of the flexibility
    of making drones versus units, although this makes them more difficult
    to play.  I've always liked Terran and played them almost exclusively
    in SC1, even in the early days when they were horribly weak; in SC2
    allied games, I particularly like how they can repair or heal allied
    3. I notice you don't have a lot of 1on1 games in your record, why?
    In SC1, I was fairly addicted to the game and lost a lot of
    perspective on the importance of maintaining a normal balanced life.
    Once I started playing 1on1's any given day, it was hard to stop;
    e.g. friends would ask me to go see a movie with them, I'd try to play
    until the last minute, then I'd be in the middle of a game when I was
    supposed to leave for the movie and I'd miss it entirely.  Those of
    you who are avid video gamers can probably identify with this sort of
    behavior.  Same thing happened with WoW.
    For SC2, I've resolved to maintain a healthy distance from the game.
    Allied games create a natural limitation because I can't play if my
    partners aren't on, I have to quit for the day once my partners quit,
    and I have no feeling that I should be top diamond since this depends
    on the quality of my partner too whereas if I played 1v1's, I would
    keep playing day and night until I hit top diamond.
    How much time you devote to any given game or activity is of course
    your choice, so I am just mentioning the choice I've made for now due
    to my lack of self-control :-).  While we're at it, though, I'll pose
    a simple question to help you make good decisions: Do you think that 5
    years from now, you'll look back and say that your current habit was
    time well spent?  I remember that SC1 was released around final exam
    time at my university and some people were tempted to play instead of
    study; this to me is an example of a decision you may look back at in
    5-10 years with regret.
    4. Can I add you as a friend on b.net?
    I don't use shockwave.xpow@gmail.com as my b.net account.  Although I
    am flattered at the requests to friend me, I already have too many
    people both from the SC1 community and in real life whom I am
    committed to playing with.  You are welcome to email me to ask me
    questions about the game, but I am limiting how many friends I
    maintain online.
    5. What race do you recommend that I play?
    If you want the race that is currently (at the time of this guide's
    writing) the most powerful, play Terran.  That said, up until high
    competition brackeets, the racial imbalances aren't very severe.
    If you want to play the easiest race to control, I recommend Protoss,
    since they the easiest build paradigm, the easiest defensive
    structures (e.g. cannons attack air and ground and detect), and use
    more expensive units so you'll generally be controlling a smaller
    Zerg is a ton of fun to play, but they're difficult for beginners to
    pick up because of the constant decision-making between whether to
    build units or drones, and because their playstyle focuses more on
    mobility, harassment, and flanking, which means that their units are
    more frail.
    6. Can you write for my webpage or consult for me?
    I am actively involved in forum communities and such as a poster, and
    used to run a gaming forum during SC timeframe, but I probably do not
    have time to commit to anything formal for SC2.
    7. What do you do in real life?
    I'm an engineering manager at a well known gaming company.  My
    specialization is in graphics and rendering.  I will leave out the
    name of the company but suffice it to say, they are not a competitor
    to Starcraft.
    8. Will you actually let me use your guide if I ask?
    In general, yes.  If you write to me and ask for permission, I will
    generally give it out if your site checks out as reputable.  I am
    (obviously) not getting paid to write this guide so my main
    motivation, like most gamefaq-ers, is to just to spread the word and
    hopefully help you all out.
    9. Thanks for your guide!
    You're welcome!  Glad I can help.
    X. QUESTIONS?                                                     CH10
    You may contact me at shockwave.xpow@gmail.com for questions about
    this guide or for any general multiplayer questions.  However, since I
    am just one person, I would suggest that unless you have specific
    questions about things I brought up in the guide (versus general SC2
    questions), please visit the official b.net Starcraft2 forum (which I
    also post on): http://us.battle.net/sc2/en/forum/13436/
    If you would like to contribute to this FAQ such as by giving ideas
    or making corrections, feel free to email me and I will incorporate
    those.  If you would like to be credited for your contribution, 
    please note that in your email and also the name under which you
    would like to be credited.

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