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WGT Chronicles: Intermission
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Date: 04/14/04 06:04
Game Type: Starcraft
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WGT CHRONICLES: Intermission

Hello everyone and welcome to the second issue of WGT Chronicles. I took a 5-day trip to Italy, and when I came back, WGT season 6 was over and not to restart until this coming Friday, April 16th. Despite the lack of official ladder, a lot of WGT players still go the channel simply to play for fun. This is a perfect chance to play the top layer of people on No ladder also means that the old rank barriers are now not in effect, so there is a good chance to play a much higher rated player. Which was what I was loking for.

My rank at the end of the ladder was C4. Not good, but considering that I had not played for 6 months beforehand, I was content with it. This was about getting better after all.

Game 1

My first opponent was NT.arG)Rain. He was very secretive about his rating, so I looked him up. As it turned out, NT.arG stands for National Team Argentina, and Rain was on their B-team with C5 rating. I did not let the fact that he was on Argentina national team intimidate me, and you, my gentle reader, should not be too quick to be impressed either because Latin America SC is about as good as Canadian navy.

The map was 2.3 WGT temple. For those of you who do not know it, here is the quote from the first WGT issue about it:

"You can find a large picture of it here. There are several significant changes made to the map that improve balance. First of all, you will notice that the terrain of 6 and 3 o'clock mains is changed so that terran can no longer hit the Protoss nexus at 6 from the 6/9 gully and at 3 cannot fire as far onto the protoss plateau or fire on the 12 ramp from the 3 plateau. The islands have minerals placed normally, which makes is easier to mine. Minerals at naturals are placed so that only half can be reached from the cliff, which makes the peons a bit safer. There are some other minor changes. The end result is, in my opinion, the best version of temple ever made."

We both picked toss. I drew 12 start. I made pylon on 8, gate on 10 (scout with the builder probe here), and second gate on 12.

My probe saw her enemy counterpart coming out of 3, and found that start position empty. This meant Rain was at 6.

As soon as my first gate was done, I started a zealot. Then I made my second pylon as soon as I had enough money. I placed it next to my first one. This way, if my opponent decided to zealot rush me and made it into my base, he would not be able to disabe my gates by killing one pylon.

My scouting probe made it into my opponent's base at that point and saw that he was going 2 gate as well. There was no point in rushing, so I started assimilator before making my second zealot.

My first zealot popped out of the gate then and I send him the enemy base. Since I paused zealot production to make assimilator, if Rain rushed hard, he might have caught me with slightly lower troop count. The initial zealot sent to his base with orders to kill probes means he has to delay his rush to deal with him. This also can give a few probe kills.

My scouting probe bit it because I was not microing it just as my zealot was arriving. I ordered him into the mineral line. I saw that Rain had just finished his assimilator. My zealot took out 3 probes before defending zealots took him down. That was good.

At home I had 2 zealots. I saw 3 at Rain's base. I ordered 2 more zealots made and started cyber core.

I had 5 zealots and had begun goon production when Rain arrived at my ramp with 4 zealots. They came up the ramp and saw my defending 5. The zealots looked at each other threateningly, called each other traitors, flexed their muscles, and Rain left. My zealots chased him down the ramp for morale purposes and stopped at the bottom.

This incident showed that I was very slightly ahead on troops. On the basis of this, I picked a plan. I would mass units, with the goal of goon/speed zeal, adding gates as necessary (1-base toss can run up to 5 gates of zeal/goon when he saturates the mineral line). As soon as I would see Rain expand, I would hit him. If I saw reavers, I would skip the zealots and try the plan with pure goon.

To this end, I started researching goon range and ordered 3rd gate and a robofac. I also ordered a probe to go hide behind Rain's natural minerals to spot any expansion attempts. When the robo was done, I began observatory and citadel of adun. I also placed 3 goons near my mineral line to defend in case of a reaver drop.

A bit later that probe died. I had about 2/3 control groups of each goon and zeal. Zeal speed was 50% done. 3 gates were working and 4th was morphing in. It was looking right.

My observer scout reported that the expansion was indeed being made by Rain and there were no reavers in sight. Zealot speed finished, and I sent my army out.

11 goons and 10 zealots grouped at Rain's mineral only. I ordered the attack. More troops from my 4 gates were already en-route. Rain had 15 goons and 4 zealots (w/o speed) on defense.

Rain danced his goons to keep them retreating from the zealots. 4 of his goons were on high ground, which was giving him some advantage. His dancing worked against him. His goons danced to his ramp. From what I could see from the vision I got from the fire coming from Rain's main cliff, a new batch of troops had come out of his gates. He looked to have more goons than me, but the majority of them were on high ground, and my 8 remaining goons only had to fight 3 or 4 that were below.

While this was happenning, started expansion at my natural and another gate below ramp because I did not have time to shift to main and make it there.

Rain saw that he needed to regain low ground position and moved his troops down with a move command, which allowed me to get a bunch of free hits in. Rain lost his numerical advantage. My reinforcements arrived in form of 2 goons, and suddenly it was 8 of my goons against 4 of Rain's. My reinforcements kept arriving. I was winning as it was, and the zealots mixed in with the goons made it obviously unfair. Rain called "gg."

I think it is interesting to point out that even though Rain had a chance to mine his natural for good 2-4 minutes and I never mined mine, our resource score was almost the same at the end of the game. This means that even if my attack had failed and I had had to pull back and start using my natural, I was not behind in any way in the resource war. My entry into mid-late game would be quite strong.

Game 2

My next opponent was RepEr_cn, a Chinese player with the lifetime high of B4 (which is damn high, enough to be top 150 usually). He said he was a terran players, but when I told him honestly that, in my professional opinion, I sucked at this point, he decided to go random. I picked toss and got bottom start (yes, we are playing on temple again).

I scouted counter-clockwise, and found Reper at 12. He randomed to terran. Doh! I don't get to rape him when he is playing his worst race and fill the screen with "YOU SUCK!!!" messages.

I was following my anti-random build, of gate on 10, and gas on 12. My gate warped in just as I found Reper, so I skipped on the anti-random zealot and began cyber core on 14. At the same time I ordered the probe to run circles around enemy base, hoping to get as much recon as possible while annoying the terran.

I made Robo after my first goon and ordered goon range researched (you'd think with the number of times people have gotten this upgrade it would become common knowledge). I then started adding gates with the usual goal of 3 in mind.

As soon as I had my first observer, I sent it to my enemy base to figure out what was up. Half way across the map, the observer passed a dropship heading for my base. I had 2 goons near my nexus. I ordered a third one to ge there as well.

The drop never came. I assumed he saw my defenses and decided against wasting his units. I had a suspicion though that a B4 player might be somewhat more persistent than to just give up after one try. I placed a few goons on the right side of my nexus in case Reper decided to take the backdoor and ordered my second observer to fly around east of my base looking for the drophship. The cloacked scout found it floating in the bottom left. Bingo! Meanwhile, my other observer reported one factory, one starport, one tank, two vultures at the enemy base. I began planning my attack.

I saw Reper start additional 2 factories in his main. That meant he was expanding. I left 2 goons to guard my nexus against the dropship and made a canon on the right of my nexus as additional defensive measure. The rest of the goons (10 of them) moved out. I also loaded shuttle with 2 zealots to drop on top of tanks. As my forces departed, I started my 4th gate (still no expansion).

As Reper realized I was moving out (via a dead SCV), he ordered his dropship towards my mineral line. The dropship unloaded 2 tanks before my 2 goons could kill it. A few slow vultures came into my base but were easily dealth with by 2 zealots and a goon out of my gates and the canon by my nexus.

Meanwhile, Reper killed my two anti-drop goons and had one heavily damaged tank remaining. I ordered the goon to attack the tanks and shifted attention to my attacking force now that the threat to my probes was gone.

I ordered my 10 goons and the shuttle to move in. Reper had some mines below his ramp and a fw vultures there. Some more vulture were on high ground. One and only tank was on low ground near the expansion command center. As my goons moved in and killed the mines and vultures that were below the ramp, I noticed an orange blow on the minimap near my blue nexus. With that sinking stomach feeling, I shifted my vision there. Reper's tank was sieged an firing on my probes. ASDF!!! That thing was supposed to be dead. I killed the tank with a nearby zealot, but by that time it had killed 11 probes. Ouch! When I watched the replay for explanation, I saw that the goon I had ordered to kill the tank milled about around my assimilator then deciding killing tanks was below it turned around and went to stand calmly by the gateways. OMG! I hate goon pathing!

Despite the cocky goon fiasco, my attack was going well. I killed all the vultures and the tank on low ground without any losses, and my 10 goons were having a field day firing on the undefended SCVs and command center. All Reper had was 5-7 vultures in his main and some mines. The game was mine. Confident, I let my goons wreck havoc and flew the shuttle with 2 zealots into Reper's base. The plan was to drop the zealots on mines and have the blow up the vultures. It worked kind of. I killed most of the mines and 2 vultures, but my shuttle died to a missile turret hidden under the floating ebay. That part sucked.

My some of my goons had been firing uphill on one of the supply depots in the wallin, and after a bit it collapsed. Reper immediately ordered an SCV to build a new one in its place. He tried to run a few remaining SCVs from his natural to his main, but goon fire quickly put an end to that nonsense not letting any escape.

Once the SCVs were dead, I ordered the dragoons to focus fire on the command center. The structure exploded within second within seconds. With the expansion out of the way and at least 15 SCVs killed, I had nothing but mopping up left to do.

6-7 vultures came down the ramp and laid a mine field before heading for my main. Reinforcing goons that were coming from the bottom killed a few of them before they sped out of range. The vultures did not have speed upgrade yet, and as they headed down to my base, they had to make way past more of my troops going north. By the time they made it to the choke of my natural, there were only 2 vultures left. Not a threat.

While the vultures were making their way down. I commenced attack on my opponent's ramp. A siege tank came and sieged. Unfortunately for Reper, the tank was right on the edge. It allowed it to shoot at the goon milling about the 12 natural, but it also allowed the goons to reach it. I ordered some of my troops to focus fire on it. The tank blew up within seconds.

My goons pressed on as another tank came out of the factory and sieged, this time a bit farther from the edge. I could reach with 2 goons at a time firing from the top of Reper's ramp. I ordered them to shoot the tank. Reper had brough a bunch of SCVs to repair the depots. Now he moved the majority of them to the tank. Two goons could not kill the tank, but the rest of them that were firing on the wallin, managed to take down the middle depot. There were 3 vultures and some SCVs milling around besides the tank. I ordered my troops to move into Reper's base. Once again, my plans fell to the infamous gragoon pathing. Instead of walking into the base, the ones that were at the top of the ramp stopped and began attacking SCVs and vultures, leaving the goons at the bottom to mil around uselessly. I zealously pounded my mouse for goons to move, but as soon as the tank would fire on them, they would stop to retaliate, making no progress.

The vultures and some SCVs died, but the tank managed to kill 2 or 3 of the dragoons at the top of the choke. A 10 HP SCV used the newly available space to start rebuilding the depot of the wallin. I still had 8 goons left, but some of them were damaged, and all of them were acting like retards, so I backed off, taking one last vengeful shot at the builder SCV, killin it.

The situation still looked favorable. I had more units and my base was undamaged. With one veteran tank and one new tank coming out of the factory, Reper was in no position to attack. Still, I was quite frustrated. 2ce already goon AI made things rather unpleasant for me. I still had full confidence in my win however.

I had 5-6 newly-made goons sitting in main, so I ordered them to go reinforce my troops outside of terran main. On the way there, they tripped mines at my mineral natural, loosing 3 of their number. The replay showed that those mines had been there from very early in the game. My initial attack force did not trigger them through pure luck, as they walked to the right of them. Meanwhile I had 3 goons less than I would have liked. Still, I was in no danger.

Once the reinforcing goons arrived at my firebase near the enemy base, I decided to try his defenses once more. Reper had 3 tanks sieged at that point though, and I only managed to kill one of the depots at the wallin and 2 SCVs before losing 4 goons and retreating.

My main was going to run out soon, so I started a Nexus at my natural. I kept had kept up goon production all along, so I had 7 new goons in my main. I still felt in conrol of the game.

My observer in Reper's base noticed that he brought back his dropship from the tank drop on my main and was repairing it. He then loaded 2 tanks in it and headed to the right, obviously wanting to turbo my ntural. I could not allow that to happen, so I moved my 11-strong force of goons to line up at across the 3 natural. Their mission was to intercept the dropship. At the same time, I hit the "1" key on my eyboard to bring up my shuttle that I had hotkeyed there. Damn! That shuttle died in my 2 zeal drop on the mines and vultures, and I never built a new one. I hastily ordered one built. Not to worry, that dropship was not going to get through my blockade.

Just as I thought that, the dropship came into view. 3 goons were in position to fire on it. I cheered, but those cheers died as the dropship made it through with 17 hitpoints remaining. One more shot, damn it! I was in real trouble now. My main was about to dry up, and the shuttle was still a long way from completion.

Naturally, in a little while "Our base is under attack!" sounded in my ears. The tanks had landed on the cliff and opened fire. My shuttle popped out when the nexus shield were depleted. The structure blew up just as my goons were almost to the tanks. The tanks unsieged as I landed my troops. I targeted and killed the evil shuttle, but that gave tanks the extra shot needed to kill the goons without taking losses. They were damaged though, and my next load of 2 goons finished them easily. The game was no longer looking too great. Muttering to myself about goons and shooting range practice, I restarted my nexus and added 2 canons to safeguard against vulture raids.

I had left a goon at Reper's natural, and at this point it saw a command center landing and SCVs coming in before a squad of vultures finished it off. My natural nexus was not quite done yet, and my main was dry. I was distance mining. I was quite distressed by this turn of events, which showed in my making 2 Citadels of Adun.

My forward squad of goons noticed a turret being made in front of Reper's main cliff. 2 tanks came soon and sieged there. I ordered the goons to attack them. They were greeted by booming fire of 4 more tanks shooting from the main cliff. To not make the attack a total waste, I pressed on and killed the two tanks below cliff before pulling back. I lost 6 goons. I felt the control of the game being pried from my fingers. Still, those fingers had to be cold and dead before I gave up. I ordered a probe and 2 dragoons to 9 main with orders to expand.

A short stalemate insued. Neither of us was in the position to attack the other. If I managed to bring 9 on-line, I would secure the resource base necessary for victory. Reper's goal, naturally, was to not let me do anything of the sort.

Reper did what all terrans do in stalemates: he went with a multi-dropship turbo newbie. I saw 4 tanks arrive in 2 ship with the 2 goons on my natural cliff. Those goons were quickly dispatched, and the tanks began raining fire on my Nexus. At that point I was in the process of doing what all toss do in a stalemate: annoying drops on terran. I had a shuttle with 4 DTs in it heading for Reper's main, which my observe reported was mostly devoid of turrets. Upon seeing the tanks arrive, the shuttle pulled a U-turn and headed for my cliff. At the same time, I ordered a bunch of probes to go to 9 from my natural.

DTs unloaded and killed 2 tanks. The remaining 2 hopped into a dropship and pulled a valiant retreat.

During the action on my cliff, my 9 ramp had come under attack from 6 vultures. 2 goons on the ramp held, killing all the vultures with the help of reinforcing 2 goons and a zealot, but Reper now knew about my land stake there.

Sticking with the annoying drop policy, I loaded a shuttle with 3 templar and a zealot and sent it on the way to my opponents natural. It was time for some peon control.

As the shuttle was leaving, I saw a pack of vultures arrive in front of my mineral only and lay some mines. I also noticed an SCV begin a missile turret. No tanks came, so I attack moved 5-6 goons, and with the help of an oberver killed the mines, the turret, and the offending SCV. The vultures were not around, and I still saw no tanks.

The reason I saw no combat units was that Reper oredered an attack on my 9 expansion. A force of tanks and vultures were heading there.

Reper must have thought I would not have troops there because his tanks were doing a line dance on the way to 9. I did have troops thought. My 6 goons there killed 5 tanks and some vultures, but eventually succumbed to superior numbers. Repers had 5 vultures and 6 tanks left. My 5 goons from my main arrived, but did little damage before being dispatched.

As Reper moved on to 9, my peon control shuttle arrived at his natural. I unloaded the zealot and 3 temps, but Reper was paying attention and started running SCVs away. I still killed quite a few, but a lot made it away. By the looks of it, they were heading to 12 mineral only. I picked up the troops and my shuttle stuck around flying back and forth, making Reper nervous. It worked becuase he did not bring SCVs back there to mine.

Meanwhile my 9 base fell, and with it the majority of my probes. I only had about 10 mining my natural.

I kept producing troops and storming SCVs, but after a minute or two, Reper showed up on my doorstep with a control group of tanks and some vultures. I could not hold it off and called GG, prompting Reper's response:

Reper: I can't believe I won this

Frankly, I could not believe it either. I came away from the game feeling quite frustrated. In hidsight, I made some critical mistakes. Of course, the gay goon AI did mess me up quite a bit, but there were some things I shoud have done differently outside of that. First of all, that zealot drop on mines was simply stupid. Losing a shuttle was not worth clearing a mine field and killing 3-4 vultures. Second, I should have immediately rebuilt the shuttle. Third, After I killed the command center, I should have concentrated more on building up and expanding than on attacking. The game was mine, and even though the only reason I did not break through was goon pathing, I should not have been so eager to attack. Reper was the one under pressure. Pulling back and expanding 3 times was a better alternative. And yes, I mean 3 times exactly. I should have taken my natural, my mineral only, and 9 main. I had over a control group of goons at that point, while Reper only had 1 tank and a control group of SCVs. If I had a shuttle, there was nothing he could have done to stop me from the mass expansion strategy. Lastly, whatever mistakes I made, my loss was also in a large part due to Reper's great playing. His SCV micro repairing was impressive. But above all, it was his determination that won him the game. Many people would have left after loosing their natural and at least half of their SCVs, but he stuck it out and walked away with a win. GG to him.

Game 3

My next game was against a player called unname. He too did not say what his rank was, but he was registered on WGT. The only piece of information he volunteered was that he was from Russia. He picked toss, and so did I.

I started at 3. My scouting probe found nothing at 12, so I went for early gas build:

-8 pylon
-10 gate
-12 gas
-13 zealot
-17 core
-20 gate

My probe found my opponent at 9 doing a quick gas build as well. I sent my first zealot there to do some probe hunting.

He arrived, and I started with the said prob hunting. I had just made my first kill and forced all enemy probes to stop mining and bunch up on one mineral patch when I saw a zealot in my own mineral line. The zealot already had 3 kills. A saying went through my head. Something about some weapon, raising it, and dying by it.

I forgot all about the zealot in the enemy mineral line and ordered my probes to attack the intruder. I lost one more probe before dispatching the zealot. My own zealot only got 2 probe kills before dying. Not good, but thing to worry about really. Early probe killing with zealot is about the equivalent of trash talk before a fight. Lot's of noise, but no blood.

I started making goons from 2 gates and ordered their range researched. When I had 5 goons I began robofac. When I had 7 dragoons, unname attacked me with 2 dragoons and 3 zealots. Upon seeing my forces, unname immediately signaled retreat, but one if his goons died before he made it out of range. I pursued for a bit getting a few more free hits in but not killing anything.

I tried countering, but when I arrived, unname had 5 goons on cliff that I could see, so I decided it was my turn to pull back.

About then I started making observers. For additional recon, I had my usual probe hiding behind unname's natural minerals on a lookout for expansion attempts.

At this time, I figured I was pretty safe, so I begain an expansion at my own natural. 7 goons in the front and 2 goons and a canon near my main nexus made me feel pretty safe.

My first observer popped out and I directed it to my goon force in front of my natural. It would save me in case of a DT rush. If you send your first obs to enemy base, a DT rusher will very often catch you before your second one is out.

Well, I DTs never came, but I did bag myself an observer that flew in over my goon force. That was a definite core, but it meant that, even though he never saw the warping nexus itself, unname probably knew I saw expanding.

I was making goons but still had some money left, so I added a 3rd gate. My observer made it to the enemy natural at that time and saw 3 gates and reaver tech. I quickly added some canons at my natural since past early game, that is the favorite dropping spot.

My expansion was on-line, and my hidden probe was still reporting nothing at unname's natural. That was good, but it also meant he was planning a big frontal assault.

All the sudden plasma fire started hitting a canon at my expansion nearest to the cliff. I saw 2 goons on my cliff. The canon fell, but I moved my goons into position to attack the intruders uphill. I lost one goon and another was severely damaged, but enemy goons were gone. I took my force back to defend the entrance to my natural and replaced the destroyed canon.

At that point I had made citadel and began leg research. The probe hiding at enemy natural died. I added 4th and 5th gates and a templar archives.

I had a control group and a half of goons when unname hit me. He had about a control group of goons 2 or 3 zealots and a shuttle with 2 reavers. This was going to be close.

I pulled back initially, but then saw the shuttle advance above the enemy goons. My troops surged forward and targeted it. The shuttle blew up managing to unload only one reaver, which I targeted next and eliminated. After that it was just goon vs goon. It looked like I had numerical advantage, so I let my forces stand their ground and focused on producing from 5 gates. A bunch of goons died. When unname had 4 left facing 5 of mine, he retreated.

I added zealots and templar to my production queue and started researching storm. I had taken an earlier expansion than my opponent and held off a full attack without taking any damage to my infrastructure. I was feeling quite confident about the game, so I sent a probe to 12 natural with orders to begin an expansion there.

Soon I had over a control group of zeal/goon as well as 2 templar with storm researched. I ordered my troops to move out.

When I arrived at 9 mineral only, my observer reported that 6 enemy goons were stationed on high ground. The rest of the goons were at the natural (about half a control group). There was also a reaver and 2 canons.

I ordered my troops to attack and stormed the high ground goons. My troops then moved in. I stormed again, targeting the group of goons on low ground this time. They danced towards me to avoid the storm, but due to storm damage and free hits from my goons, they went down quickly. I went after the reaver next while a few of my zealots mingled with the goons coming down the ramp. Unnamage tried reaver popping with a shuttle, but I pressed on and killed the massive automaton after a small chase.

Taking out the reaver cost me though. When the machine died, I had 4 damaged goons and a zealots left. Unname ordered his probes to help defend. I retreated. 3 of my goons and a zealot were caught among the probes and killed by the one remaining canon and 3 enmy goons. In the end, only one goon made it out alive. My attack force was dead, but the objective was achieved: the reaver was dead. Now all I needed was superior numbers, and that I had. My retreating goon met up with 2 more goons, a zealot, a DT, and 2 templar coming from my main. My new force attacked. I stormed the peons, killing most of them and kept bringing more troops from my base. When my next wave arrived, unname called GG.

Game 4

My last game served to elevate my spirits, so I looked for a new opponent. The guys name was 2oR[d-zone]. [d-zone] is a clan on WGT. My friend Sin, who used to be on nA, is now on their team and has a sponsor, though he is actually not that good. The rankings on WGT had been reset, so I had nothing to judge 2oR by. We talked a bit about our mutual friend, and started the game, I with toss and d-zone 2oR with terran.

My nexus warped in at 12. I made a pylon on 8 and sent the probe on a scouting mission, starting with the 3 spot. 3 Was empty, so I proceeded with my usual build.

My probe found 2oR at 9. Interestingly, he chose to make his walling out of a barrax and a factory instead of the usual depot-depot-rax. I tried attacking his SCV with the probe, and through some sort of a bug, she passed through the wallin and ended up on the other side. I sent her into the base for more scouting. Unfortunately, 2oR was determined to keep me in the dark, so he made a marine and gunned down my scout.

When my first goon arrived, I sent it to the terran base, as I built robo, researched range and added 2 more rax at home. The goon got to pound on the barracks for a bit before 2oR's first tank popped out and chased it away.

At home I had commenced goon pumping, placing soem goons at the ramp and some near the nexus to cover all possible contingencies.

Meanwhile, my observer made it to the terran base and saw the the barracks had been lifted and there were no troops near the choke. It was too early for the terran to ahve expanded, so I figured he must be a Gundam fan doing a 2-factory rush. No problem, this is exactly what this build is for: to bitchslap any terran who acts too agressively, be it agressive rush or agressive expansion.

2oR showed that he was more than just agressive. 3 tanks, 3 vultures, a couple of marines, and at least 4 SCVs moved to my ramp. I had 8 goons on top. Before my opponent could pull back, one vulture was dead, and some token SCVs and rines. Terran troops retreated from the ramp, and my goons moved out to pursue.

I did not have to chase my enemy for long. As soon as he was away from the ramp, 2oR sieged his tanks and ordered construction of 2 turrets. I moved my goons next to his tanks. 2oR started laying mines. A bit of chaos insued with my goons firing on the tanks and mines going off. When the smoke cleared, I had 4 goons left, and my opponent lost his entire force. I believe it is noteworthy that when the mines blew up my goons they took all the vultures, marines, and some SCVs with them because the goons were packed too closely for vultures to escape the encirclement.

2oR[d-zone]: nice

Well, that felt good, and I definitely had gained an advantage. 3 more goons came out of my gates and I moved my 7-strong goon force to outside of the enemy natural. At the same time I ordered an expansion at natural.

Once my goons arrived at their destination, I saw from the observer that one and only tank my opponent had was placed close to the edge. I moved my goons to attack it. They hurt the tank and killed some mines that 2oR had placed at the entrance to his natural. In the end, the tank survived by unsieging, moving back a bit, and sieging again. I retreated my goons, one of their number. No problem, one goon is worth a chance to annoy the terran.

While this little play was happenning I was building a shuttle, some zealots and reinforcing my natural with canons to guard against vulture raids.

I had 4 zealots and was ready to try and hit 2oR where it hurt when I saw half a control group of vulture run around my containment for of dragoons. At home I had one goon defending ramp, 2 canons at my natural, and one canon by my main CC. I knew that with my canon defense my probes were safe, but one goon was not going to hold 5-6 vultures. This meant that once 2oR got into my base, he would mine around my gates, which would cost me the next batch of troops. Alternatively, I could postpone the attack and defend my main.

I decided in favor of sacrificing the next set of troops and proceeding with the attack. The opportunity was just too good. 2oR only had 2 tanks on high ground to defend.

At home things happened just as I predicted. 3 vultures out of 5 or 6 made it into my main, saw that they could not do any damage to my economy and proceeded to mine the area in front of my gates.

Meanwhile I ordered a full frontal attack on 2oR's natural. I unloaded 4 zealots on top of one of the tanks and attack moved the dragoons into the natural. 2oR was keeping alert, however, and quickly unsieged the 2 tanks on top of the cliff and brought 2 vultures to help defend against the zealots. After some dancing and zealot popping, all the zealots were dead along with 2 vutlures, and both tanks remained, thought hvily damaged. While this was happenning, my dragoons destroyed one tank on low ground and a missile turret and went to work on the command center.

2oR siged his surviving tanks of top of the cliff, so I moved the goons away from that and restarted my attack on the command center. 2oR tried to float it away, but my goons managed to destroy it just as it came under the protection of the tanks on top of the cliff. I only lost 2 goons in the attack, so I ordered the remaining 6 to retreat to the mineral only. I parked them there.

With another major vitory under my belt, I moved a probe to expand at 3 o'clock main. I defended my new territory with 2 goons blocking the ramp and a canon to help them. A new oberver finished building, and I cleared out the ramaining mines in my main with the 5 fresh goons waiting cautiously by the gates. I also added more gates, began weapon upgrade, and constucted a citadel of adun to get zealot speed during the battle.

I had about a control group of dragoons when 2oR moved out with 6 tanks and a bunch of vultures. I retreated the goons towards my main to stay away from tanks. 2oR tried some vulture harassment, but I ordered the goons to hold position, and they cured the vulture problem; a sole remaining vulture ran back to the cover of the tanks. Said tanks were giving me trouble however, as they had sieged at the the top left temple wall and were contesting my map control. 2oR also added some depots and turrets to his push, making it that much harder to attack. To keep flanking an option, I moved 7-8 goons down to below the temple center. I also begain adding gates at my 3 expansion.

The goons at the bottom were holding their position when a control group of speedy vultures ran head on into them. Some vultures died, the rest rode around the goon and headed for 3 main after laying some mines in front of the tank push. At 3 they ran into goons and a canon blocking the choke, lost some of their number and ran back to the tanks.

Seeing my goons below his push had an interesting psychological effect on 2oR. He was now afraid to leave his natural completely undefended and made a mini tank push there. I went in and out with my goons killing a tank of two to make sure he stayed worried. Those tanks sieged there meant he was not reinforcing and advancing his push.

In a little while, my 8-gate pumping produced about 3 control groups of zeal/goon. It was time to kick that tank push back at my enemy. I suicided a few groups of 2-3 zealots, clearing the minefield, then ordered full attack. With no mines to intervene, my zealot/goon mix rolled over the tank push, which had about 2/3 of a control group of tanks in it blocked off with some supply depots. Upon seeing his tank push destroyed, 2oR decided he had no chance in this game and left after offering a GG.


-Goon pathing really sucks.

-Goons still rock. Terrans these days tend to be overconfident. 2oR did not even allow for a possibility that my goon force was too strong. First he attacked my ramp, then refused to retreat. Metal is sure as hell strong, but it has its limits. 3-gate or good strong 2-gate can defeat gundam-style rush. Know when to pull back, and never ever try to roll up toss ramp. Unless toss went one gate, he'll have enough goons to destroy your units.

-3-gate build counters terran's agressive plays, and counters them hard. 1 factory variations all face the danger of frontal attack with zealot drop to clear out problem tanks. 2 factory pushers have very little chance of success; toss will simply have too many troops. 3-gate is a strategy that forces terran to play to counter it rather than have toss react to the terran moves. Think of it, the usual PvT for toss consists of watching closely for what terran does and they playing to counter. If it's 1 factory expand, toss tried to dual expo; if it's tank drop, toss rallies to defend; 2-factory attack--toss scrambles to defend against it. All those counters are passive, so terrans are free to proceed with their plan in peace. In the case of 3-gate, the counters are agressive. You attack 1-factory builds, you defeat the gundam-style rush and counter quickly, that type of deal. 3-gate is actually a threat to terran.

-Terran can counter 3-gate though without making any sacrifices. First of all, there is the passive counter, which is 2-factory expand. 2 factory will give terran enough units to defend against goon/zeal drop attack. Then there are the infantry-based strats. Pure academy rush or academy/tank rush are both very strong against this toss build because toss will have pure goon and infantry does very well against them. A lot of terran progamers, use academy rush time to time and then switch to metel later on. Nada does this really well (he does all things really well when it comes to playing terran actually). If you are a Heartcutter fan though, you can stick with MMF/tank for the rest of the game. You can even give deep6 a go, but beware, unless you can scan/stim/lockdown in under 2 seconds, you will have problems. I know this because I used to play terran a while back and used deep6 a lot. You have to really micro your infantry if you don't want it slaughtered.

-Well, this is the end of this session. Thanks for reading. Hope you enjoyed it. And comment, comment, damn it!
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