Saturday, February 20, 2010

Ranked and good to go

I've been playing 1v1 using Random race, and finished my 10 placement games yesterday. This means that the automated matchmaking algorithms have now placed me in the rankings for 1v1 play. I started in the Gold League, Division 4, 37th place. As far as I can tell, leagues are platinum, gold, silver, bronze, and copper, in order. Each division has 100 players, and there are at least 8 divisions per league. Divisions don't appear to mean anything in terms of rank, so I think they're parallel subdivisions within the leagues. I haven't been able to get a good game recorded (one in which I'm not trounced), but I have some good replays, which I might record at some point. While I'm feeling pretty good as Terran and Protoss, I haven't won any matches yet as Zerg.

Yesterday, I played a couple of 2v2 games with someone I met by getting zealot-owned in 1v1. In the first 2v2, his game crashed with an error about 10 minutes in, at which point I took his zealots and my marines and wiped the map with our 2 opponents. Shared unit control works the same as Warcraft III, and I was able to control all of his units and buildings once he dropped.

In order to start up a game with friends, all you need to do is invite them to a party and jump in a game. You can also create a custom game and get all set up before allowing anybody else in if you want.

As of today, I'm ranked 42 in the Gold league for 1v1 and 18 in the Platinum league for 2v2. In 2v2, I've been playing Terran with my Protoss teammate. I get a barracks with a reactor add-on for quick marines, while he gets zealots followed by stalkers. We generally rush or defend against the opponents' rush then counterattack. If that doesn't end them, I build up to marauders and go to factory or starport to support my infantry.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

2/17- Beta begins

I'm going to start up this blog to share my experience with the Starcraft 2 beta. I'm 2-0 against other players and have tried out all three races against the computer AI (only "very easy" available right now).

First Impressions:
Orbital Station (upgraded Command Center) has an ability called "Call down supplies" which is very handy, especially because I keep forgetting to keep my supply high enough.
Siege tanks work a lot better for uphill sieging as they no longer have a chance to miss when shooting at something on higher group (you just need to have sight on the target).
Marauders are very nice and give Terran a handy anti-mech unit.

The Nexus has the new Protoss macro ability "Chrono boost" which speeds up a building's production or researching for 30 seconds. It costs 25 out of the Nexus's 100 mana and might very well be overpowered. It is extremely useful for boosting probe production, pumping out Colossi a bit faster, and pretty much anything that involves training or researching.
Void rays are really useful. I took out the Planetary Fortress in a Terran player's expansion in about 5 seconds using 3 void rays. Their charging up attacks make quick work of buildings as well as Thor, as I discovered.
The Gateway's ability to switch to a Warp Gate and warp in units anywhere on the map within the psionic matrix is also very cool and helps for reinforcing attacks on the enemy base.

The new and more important queen is a nice touch to the Zerg feel. She can lay creep tumors (which are how the creep is extended now), spawn more larva at a hatchery, and heal a friendly unit.
Nydus worms combined with the Overlord's new ability to spawn creep greatly improve Zerg mobility, allowing instant transportation across the map.
The distinct waypoints at the hatchery for drones vs other units threw me off at first until I realize that I could also set waypoints for morphing larva directly.

I'm going to try to record some of my games and put them on YouTube, so if anyone has any special requests, let me know.