Published on NA, KR and EU.
Update: Middle Kingdom is posted on the PlayXP map forums as well. If you can read or write Korean, please visit TL and PlayXP and help our communities share awesome maps!
This map Middle Kingdom is all about the third base:
The mains are 25.5 CCs. There is plenty more space to build between the natural and third if you are a huge player and need gigantic bases. No really, there is extra space there for actual base building on purpose.
+ Show Spoiler [Analyzer Summary] +
Early on the natural plays like many familiar maps, but moving on to a third base is where things get really interesting. You can take the nearby 6 mineral/1-gas base and essentially expand your main onto the middle elevation area there.
What's so fun about that? The third base is ultra close so you can make some nasty moves with 5 gas relatively early. Or you can go for one of the normal 8/2 center bases as your third, and pick up the 6/1 base as a fourth later on.
Middle Kingdom certainly supports 1-base and fast expand openers. And three-base turtle-to-200 is boring and silly if it is too safe, so Middle Kingdom intentionally makes it hard to just sit behind a tiny wall on 3-base:
The third base resources are practically hanging off the cliff! All races can harass the living daylights out of this base from the low ground with vision to force a turtling player to respond. (Roaches, too!)
So what is the strongest way to defend the third base? Play like a champion and take the fight to your opponent to control the map. Take bases with impunity! Or grab 3-base and work towards 200 supply but also execute brilliant high-tech ambushes when your opponent tries to kill the third from below. This map wants you to be your most amazing!
The map is mid-to-large, not quite as big as Tal'Darim but still pretty big.
main2main is 174.9
nat2nat is 157.0
main2main is 145.5
nat2nat is 127.1
The Tower and how-not-to-make-a-boring,-obvious-place-to-rally-everything...
The watchtower in the center is situated in a tight web of passages to discourage large armies from just sitting on it. If you a-move a ball or particularly platoon of siege tanks then half of it will be wiggling around in the back. Play smart! Use scouts!
That's it, let me know what you think!