|"There are so many ways to annoy a Zerg player, it's not even funny. Actually, it's really funny, so I retract my previous statement."|
- mattzarella's The FFA Effect
|Lock n' Load|
|Date: ||08/09/01 05:08|
|Game Type: ||Starcraft|
|Report Rating: , # of Ratings: 2, Max: 10, Min: 9|
Lifetime Rating for |]agomar: 8.6667
Hey, it's me, and guess what - another SC battlereport.
It's been quite a few now - over 100 rookmarks worth - but I'm still chugging along. I think they're getting better lately, and I feel like I'm on the verge of unraveling a totally different style. The title image is a bit of a foreshadowing to that, but I think you'll be quite surprised when you see it.
So, let's get this thing off the ground.
ACT ONE - Pregame
It was the afternoon, somewhere around 2 PM or something, and I was just feeling guilty for not having worked out for a couple days. Putting such thoughts aside I cruised into battle.net with a smile on my face, ready for another frenzied attempt to find a good game to battlereport.
As you can imagine, it, um . . . took me a while.
Nevertheless, after hours of desperate searching, I managed to find an old friend: Wangsonn, the ever sexy defender of all that is weird and crooked, and the star of one of my previous brs ( well, the one who was eliminated quickest in an 8 FFA =P ). Spamming the channel for a couple minutes I was richly rewarded when the venerable IOM, the suspicious-looking TheGame Triple-H and the babbling RiotNrrd tumbled into the lobby, all rarrin' for that most unpredictable and rewarding of games: a 4FFA.
We started, I lagged, and soon enough the glittering world of Ramparts emerged before our waiting eyes. Captain Wangsonn strolls out from his command center around the Northwest, squinting off into the misty Eastern distance at the dimly twinkling lights of Executor IOM's Protoss settlement. Peering up at their Northern neighbors from the South are Commander Triple-H of the Necromian Legion and Colonel RiotNrrd the Queer directly to his East. All four commanders immediately clone their bumbling little peons to their respective mineral patches, and the game proceeds with the usual nervous initial chattering.
As the seconds ticked by, RiotNrrd belts out his enthusiasm with a friendly "hf." Wangsonn, seeking to demoralize his foe in the early stages of the game, replies with a timely curse. Unfortunately, that didn't exactly go over too well . . . .
Um . . . I guess it's a 3FFA then. That's already one player eliminated for Wang.
ACT TWO - Early Game
In the world of Ramparts, there's a couple key strategic considerations that must be taken into effect. First is the presence of an awful lot of cliffs, which makes the scene ripe for turbo newbies and templar drops. Hence, it's vital to have great mobility, and a strong drop/air force.
Also, the center is surprisingly important. Although the resource node isn't particularly impressive, the ease of defense, lack of possible turbo-newbies and immediate map control the expansion gives are worth taking into consideration.
That said, let's take a look at how our brave commanders are faring.
Things remain quiet for quite a while - the early game in this match isn't the most impressive I've ever seen. Wang sends a single SCV over to Riot's former main, where it immediately gets about hacking into the deserted peons. The white terran appears to have claimed the early lead, and he seems substantially ahead of both his foes in tech, production and troop count.
Wang's brand new command center rises slowly from the ground with a cankerous groan, and bumbles off towards the center. Meanwhile, however, IOM's premier shuttle near's completion. As the CC is halfway to its destination the shuttle picks up a probe and shrieks to the center, and just as the command center prepared to land the probe disembarks, warping in a nexus at the very last moment. With a howl Wang is forced to retreat, as he no doubt realizes with great irritation that he's already in a disadvantageous position to the Protoss.
Oh well. Wang's not overly concerned, since that bad-arse SCV of his has just polished off Riot's chobo command center. With a smile the Terran Commander orders the construction of a new CC onsite, as that other one of his makes its way to his natural. All is quiet for a little while - suspiciously quiet. In the growing unease a small, dark form slips into view of Wang's new base, and slides quickly away, scraping its orange paint on some nearby boulders. Seconds later a powerful militia courtesy of Triple-H strides into view, sleek vultures zipping through the ranks of massive, stomping Goliaths. Wang, who has been teching to wraiths while erecting two bustling expansions, is caught rather brutally unprepared. His sole defending fighter is badly owned, and his Command Center manages escape with just 200 hitpoints left. Triple-H quickly builds a new CC at the resource node as that of his enemy floats slowly off into the distance.
Meanwhile, IOM has been keeping busy. He's changed his initial corsair/goon strategy in favor of carriers, and begins crafting the fleet that would terrorize a good portion of the game. Cleverly hiding his Stargates near the Northwestern edge of his plateau, he ensures that his opponents will be unaware of his technological intentions until he strikes the first time. Wang forces his hand, however, when two white tanks siege up below his central base, opening fire on a couple outlying structures. IOM moves to counter with the devastating might of triple Carriers.
Not much survives the initial wave of interceptors, as both tanks and a couple buildings go down in a blaze of glory in the opening moments of the assault. As you'll remember, however, Wang's initial tech choice was wraiths, and by now he's got a couple defending his bustling natural. Cloaking the fighters he hurls them into battle, and although the carriers still outgun their fellow aircraft IOM pulls them back, not wanting to damage his fleet this early in the game.
The previous battle was a semi-stalemate ( the Protoss were probably part successful ), and Wang no doubt feels confident that his brown foe will think twice before attacking again. And so he looks to the South, where he realizes to his alarm that Triple-H has now claimed no fewer than three expansions, and is looking to be in a position to dominate the game.
Not so fast.
Wang loads a dropper with two lumbering tanks, and sends the package to the Southeast, towards his former expansion. The tanks unsiege at the cliff above the lightly defended base, and quickly set about blasting everything to smithereens as wraiths scream in for support. The SCV line is quickly smashed, as are a couple nearby turrets. Another shuttle is brought in through the carrier blockade, but it only just manages to lose the whirling interceptors, and drop a fresh load of tanks upon the cliff. Goliaths pour in to squelch the threat, but while the tanks remain atop the cliff they don't dare to attack, for fear of catastrophic losses. So it is that Wang's turbo newbie smashes the command center, and brings the entire expansion to its knees. Smelling victory, the white Commander loads his tanks once again, and drops them just behind the cliff.
But remember the dropper that just made it past the carriers? IOM was alerted to this little skirmish by Wang's frantic curses, which blossomed out to fill the airwaves as the shuttle barely escaped. Seeing a dropper head Southeast made the Executor wonder, and he sends an observer down to investigate. Sure enough, he spots the turbo newbie, and, deciding to seize this opportunity to hurt the strongest player in the game, commands his carrier armada to the same location.
The big ships arrive as Wang unloads his troops, and for a moment all three players are engaged in a short, but brutal, three way battle. In the end, however, the carriers are too much, and both the orange goliaths and the white wraiths are crushed like an armadillo under Mark4's truck. The expansion quickly crumbles, but the Executor is content to withdraw his fleet from the slaughter, satisfied that he's done enough damage.
So, two bases have been destroyed, both at the same location, and three major attacks have been launched, each by a different player. I think it's about time to get Kassondra and Kristen off my lap ( off you go, girls ), and slap down a new section.
ACT THREE - Midgame
We start where we left off, with IOM's sleek carriers sailing away from the smouldering former orange base at RiotNrrd's old main. The Executor's not through yet, however, and he sends a dragoon militia to the South with the intent of raiding Triple's natural, while ordering his carriers down South again to smash the Northern tip of the orange Main.
The ‘goons skitter into a couple supply depots forming a semi wall-in of the natural base, while tanks blast at them from behind. The valiant Protoss warriors put up a brave fight, but the acrilite shells plummet down upon them with renewed fury, and soon all that is left of the attack are a couple smudges of blue goo sinking down into the dust.
The Carrier Captains, incensed at the fate of their brethren, slam into the orange main with irresistible power, crushing all resistance and utterly sacking the entire northern half of the place as Triple's goliaths scamper back to defend. The scene is one of utter desolation as the carriers pull back once more, the goliaths helpless to engage.
Needless to say, things are not going well for either Terran. The Carriers' mobility allows them to dart from place to place, sacking their target with immense firepower before reinforcements can arrive. Orange is now a far cry from the game-leading titan he was earlier - and his sorrow has only just begun. Wang, with his main running out, now relies desperately upon just one little resource node: if that should be destroyed, he's out of the game. The white commander beefs up his defenses and produces more wraiths and infantry, while Triple takes a similar route, erecting starports and readying himself for fighter production. All players are roughly equal in upgrades at this point, with no one having reached level two in that category.
Wang, growing restless, decides to attack orange once again, fearing that he still has a commanding lead in the game. The white Captain is unaware of the previous battles, and so sends a 12-fighter wraith squadron over to Triple's rebuilt expansion at purple's old main. The fleet is surprisingly successful, and soon enough there's not a single working SCV left at the base. Goliaths troop in, but orange is fresh out of comsats, and they can only wait helplessly a partially built turret is sacked, and a few more peons are crushed. Finally, the wraiths leave, as a comscan reveals their existence and the goliaths surge forward, losing one of their number. Unfortunately, the fighters smash straight into the Protoss natural on their way back, and only two wraiths survive the trip home.
Now IOM's carriers once again trek South, crushing a couple depots and a few turrets at the same northern section of orange's main, before leaving a second time. The fleet heads North, pauses awhile, and thunders into battle at Wang's sprawling natural.
Suddenly, a million turrets open fire, and a tobacco-chewing troop of marines shoots up into the sky. A fleet of wraiths screams in to intercept, and for a moment things look a little dicey. The carriers prevail over the wraiths, smash half the turrets, but in the end disengage with the lost of nearly all their interceptors, deciding that this porcupine is a little too difficult to tackle right now.
ACT FOUR - Lategame
After rebuilding their interceptors, IOM sends the fleet to the Southeast, now fully confident of his domination of the game. The Protoss have map control, a fleet which seems invincible, and the sexy perks of being in a |]agomar reported game ( like free cyber with GamerChickie after the match ). With their resource intake constantly under pressure, the Terrans can do nothing but defend, and hope for some relief for a couple minutes, so they can rebuild their shattered militias.
The Executor is not prepared to let that happen. Rising up at the summit of his Nexus, the wind tearing at his grizzled face, his cloak flapping in the wind as corsairs scream by overhead, he lifts a blazing psiblade in the direction of his Terran foes, and declares: "wtf, stop calling me a homo! Carriers may be gay, but they're pretty darn effective."
As his last words are spoken the behemoths smash into orange's expansion, only to stumble upon a powerful brigade of waiting goliaths. The battle heats up, with the goons spreading out in a semi-circle to hit the Protoss ships. Unfortunately, the carriers are well-supported with corsair, and moments later the dazzling blue glow of disruption web blankets the land. Unable to fire, the goliaths are quickly crushed, and the base is soon sacked. Incredulous, Triple squeals his rage, especially upon seeing the carriers retreat once again, unscathed.
Guess where the fleet moves to this time? You guessed it - back towards the Northern tip of orange's main. By now the routine has become predictable, however, which is bad news for the Executor. Three more carriers rise up out of the stargates, and more dragoons skitter out through the gateways as the leviathans roar down into Triple's main - only to meet a massive army of goliaths, a couple ghosts and a formidable squadron of wraiths lying in wait. A single carrier is downed as the fleet makes a quick retreat without killing a single structure, for the first time in the game. Sadly, however, Triple becomes a little too enthusiastic, pursuing the huge carriers with his little wraith fleet. The Protoss stop, turn around, brutally own the entire Terran airforce, and continue on their way as if nothing happens. So, in fact, the orange commander manages to turn the entire incident into a stalemate - good work.
IOM has now been using his carriers to dominate the game for over 10 minutes, and though he's managed to devastate both his Terran foes he's never really scored an enormous, decisive victory.
That, my friends, is about to change. Somewhat frightened by the fact his last assault was repulsed so easily, the Protoss Executor heads directly East from his central base. He buttresses his carrier fleet, and sends his entire armada thundering down South. There's alot riding on this all or nothing battle: both of orange's working expansions lie directly in the path of the fleet, and should those be eliminated, all may very well be lost for Triple.
Let the following collage speak for itself.
The first orange base, the continually rebuilt one at purple's former main, takes only a glancing blow, as its fringe structures and SCVs are crushed, but the command center remains intact. The natural, however - the one expansion more heavily defended and more heavily invested into than any other orange base - that takes a devastating hit. The outlying tanks are eradicated, the hordes of supply depots are smashed, the command center is blown away and any opposing turrets are brutally owned. Suddenly, however, the tell-tale clicking sound of lockdown resounds across the landscape, as nine orange ghosts storm the vanquished natural, out for vengeance. Not even the psionic might of humanity's evolutionary pinnacle can defeat the sheer might of the Protoss behemoths, however, and though five carriers are frozen, the ghosts are still slaughtered by punishing flights of interceptors. Now a new wraith squadron dashes into the fray, firing wildly at a lockdowned carrier. The massive hulk detonates with an earth-shattering roar, but through the explosion a wing of corsairs bears down upon the dastardly Terran fighters. Waves of interceptors swoop in to support the ‘sairs, and soon enough the scattered remnants of the wraiths flutter down into the burning jungles.
The road to Triple's main now lies open. The Executor seems to waver a little while at the entrance to the base, yet pulls back in the end. Perhaps he just lacked the courage to attack - in any case, with that single decision, his control over the game begins to slip.
ACT 5 - The Alliance
Yes, you heard right - Wang and Triple are now allied against their almost invincible Protoss foe. It isn't much of an alliance. The orange commander is left with no working expansions and desperately creates SCVs at RiotNrrd's former main, while Wangsonn is fresh out of resources at his natural. The only player with a mining expansion is IOM - his natural's still brimming with resources. With his fleet stronger than ever, he moves the armada to the center, and waits for a little while.
This is overconfidence in its most blatant form. In StarCraft, never wait to attack when you have the advantage.
After a few minutes of consolidating, IOM confidently moves his enormous doomfleet to the Northern edge of Triple's main, intent on destroying the pesky Terran for once and for all. As he engages, Wang responds the only way he knows how - be attacking the Protoss natural.
And what an attack it is. A terrifying horde of SCVs comes bumbling up over the horizon, supported by a squadron of eight nearly invincible wraiths. Yes - the assault is laughable. But it forces the carriers to disengage, since, with the SCVs "absorbing" the defending fire, the wraiths have managed take out all defending cannons! When the carriers thunder into range not a single probe remains, and, together with a couple goons and heavy, if unexplainable, use of disruption web, the assault is just barely defeated.
You can give Wang credit for delivering such a devastating blow in such a ridiculous way. IOM has been pumping out new ships with near fanatical zeal, and now all he has left in his treasury is roughly 150 minerals - enough for three new probes. Good job.
In fact, looking at mineral stashes, the white Commander has exactly 0, while orange - has over 1000. Yes, his natural is back online, and, with his other working base, he is, after all this time, at last in a position where he can challenge brown. But it's not going to be easy.
The Carrier fleet leaves to attack orange once again, at the same location: the northern tip of the 6:00 main. But Wang has other plans, and once again it's the weakest player who takes the lead. Rallying his formidable army of m&m he hurls them into the fray against the injured brown natural. With a shriek of alarm IOM realizes that his only source of income is in danger of extermination, and hurries back with his armada. It is too late. The nexus and any probes still mining are annihilated, and the marines start work on the Assimilator as the Protoss flotilla rises up above the horizon.
The Earth shakes as the carrier afterburners set in, and the heavy thumping of goliaths echoes across the landscape. The interceptors disengage and tumble out of their hangers, with the marines firing wildly in all directions. With no money left, IOM can't rebuild his interceptors, and when the orange goliaths reinforcing from the south reach their maximum range, the behemoths are forced to retreat. The first important Protoss structures have been destroyed, and the first resounding victory over the doomfleet has been scored.
Continue to the second section, there's more where that came from!