Hey guys, my name is Gemini and I'm a Grandmaster Protoss player who has been making guides since 2011 on various sites. The Build of the Week is my most popular series of build order guides that I've been making for about three years now on /r/allthingsprotoss. With the help of TeamLiquid.net and Spawning Tool I'm now bringing my guides over to TL as well!
Each write-up includes build order notes, an explanation/analysis of how the build works, and a VOD section so you can check out the source game and how it should go. I'll also include the Spawning Tool link so that you can practice it in game yourself and download the replay of me doing it. I hope you enjoy and be sure to read the whole write-up before asking any questions as I'm sure some of them will be answered in here!
How to use Spawning Tool
Link to the Spawning Tool Build
Link to /r/allthingsprotoss Guide.
I'm going to continue to keep it relatively simple for the influx of newer players that we have in the game and on the sub, so this week we're sticking with the safe oracle openers but now we're going into the more common PvZ unit comp which is chargelot/immortal/archon. For anyone who is capable of doing it, this build also has an archon drop follow up to the oracle opening to keep the pressure on the zerg if they're being greedy. This is probably the safest and most standard PvZ style right now that doesn't open for gladepts (which will most likely be featured next PvZ) so it's a great style to emulate if you're having problems vs zerg.
[PvZ]Stats' 2 Oracle archon drop into IAC
2 Oracle archon drop into IAC
|16||Gate [Chrono Nexus]|
|17||Gas --> Rally probes in|
|@100% Cyber --> Adept [Chrono] + WG|
|@100% Adept --> 2nd Adept [Chrono]|
|@100% Stargate --> Oracle [Chrono]|
|@100% 2nd Adept --> 3rd Adept|
|@100% Oracle --> Phoenix [Chrono]|
|@100% Phoenix --> 2nd Oracle|
|4:00 Natural Gasses|
|4:30 Twilight Council + 4th Gate|
|@100% WG --> 3x Zealot|
|5:00 3rd Nexus + Templar Archives|
|@100% Robo --> Warp Prism|
|5:30 Charge + Forge + 2-3x Gate|
|When prism is on their side --> 2x Archon|
|@100% Forge --> +1 Attack + Storm + 2x Gate|
|~7:20 2nd Robo|
|~8:00 4th Nexus|
Welcome to This Week in Chrono Timings, brought to you by your host: Gemini
With the recent change to chronoboost making it be a 50% boost over 20 seconds instead of a 100% boost over 10 seconds, it completely rules out chrono before pylon being a thing. You should always do chrono after your pylon finishes except in PvP where you'll want to do it sometime between your first and second gasses so that you can fit them both in early enough. You then want to save your 2nd chrono in PvZ and PvT just in case they're doing any sort of one base all ins or proxies. Saving it in PvP is just dependent on if you want to do a double gateway chrono or just leave one to go on WG. In PvT and PvZ you then wait until your 2nd pylon is done to chrono next (which will be your first gateway unit) and then depending on the build you either use the other banked chrono on probes or on another gateway unit. Now back to your regularly scheduled educational content, back to you Gemini.
Wow thanks Gemini. Like I mentioned in the intro, I'm keeping these builds as simple and solid as possible to give everyone new a good overview of the most basic styles in each match up. Since the last PvZ macro build was stargate into blink colossus, this one is an updated stargate build into chargelot/immortal/archon which is the more common PvZ composition as of the last year to year and a half. You start off with the normal 20 Nexus (I still prefer going 19 Nexus to get stuff down earlier, but you lose like the tinniest bit of gas mining with this, but that's solved by putting an extra probe in gas earlier) and a chronod first and second adept for scouting purposes. Small note: Stats goes for Stargate and both adepts before starting WG as a way to cut corners, if you want to be a little greedier then feel free to do this. Sending the shade through the mineral line allows you to check their drone count and if it's lower than 10 when your first adept gets there and doesn't increase by the time the 2nd adept comes, then they're most likely doing something aggressive even if they have a 3rd hatch. Otherwise they're playing normal and you'll see a healthy drone count. From there your oracle will be coming across and your adepts will be back home with their 3rd sibling that came out while they were gone so that you're safe vs any early pressure. From there you get a phoenix to clear out any overlords and two gates to finish your wall off and to reinforce and then a 2nd oracle to keep up the pressure while you expand.
Just before you expand you'll need to set up your follow up. A robo, twilight council, and fourth gateway all come up before your 3rd Nexus to set up an archon drop to keep the pressure up vs the zerg and abuse any potential greediness out of them. This part of the build is an example of something that is NOT necessary for the majority of players to do. If you don't think you can pull off the multitasking required to use oracles and a prism while macroing back home, then don't. This is for people wanting to push themselves to better their multitasking skills or for people who are already capable of doing this. If you want to instead just make two archons to keep home to keep your expansion extra safe and use the robo for observers or earlier immortals, then that is perfectly fine.
Once you get your 3rd started you'll start charge, a forge for upgrades, and also get some extra gates to help round out your production. Remember to get storm once you have the money to, which should be around when your forge is finished, and immortal production starts when you have the money as well. A 2nd robo comes down relatively quickly for Stats this game for more immortals and if all is going well then you can get your fourth at around eight minutes.
IAC: An Old Comp in a Slightly New Meta
For about as long as anyone can remember, chargelot/immortal/archon with storm has been the standard for PvZ and it continues to be about a month into patch 4.0. For zerg, hydra/bane still is very prevalent but now there's an added increase in lurker popularity again due to the fact that the lurker den can be made as an independent building now instead of an upgrade from the hydra den, and their hive tech upgrade to burrow faster is absolutely nuts. Due to this rise in lurker popularity, it has kept some protoss from switching to different compositions that go away from storm and immortals as the main damage. Chargelot/immortal/archon with storm is by far the best composition you can have vs lurker compositions since immortals stay alive for so long and deal good damage, archons also take forever to kill, storm is absurd, and chargelots can actually get on top of the lurkers unlike anything else.
With these lurker comps being more and more popular, so too does the reaction from protoss to be continuously scouting. Once lurkers are on the field it's so super important for protoss to always know where the zerg army is. Lurkers are an extremely punishing unit positionally speaking. If they get into a good choke point and you didn't see it coming then the game can simply end right there because there's no way you're getting a favorable engagement vs lurkers in a choke. The key to beating lurker comps is about army positioning and army movement. If you can see where they're going and respond quickly, then you'll be able to set up a good engagement vs them and potentially even catch them unburrowed. Going for two oracles early instead of just one helps with this as you'll have much more energy for revelation, so this is a great opportunity in this new meta to train your multitasking skills by trying to tag the enemy army as much as you can. The more you see the better you'll be able to fight it.
If neither of you are able to break each other though, the game can get a bit turtley. Mass lurker defensive play can be extremely obnoxious to break, so it's at this point that you'll need to be transitioning into carriers and SkyToss. This would also be the time to add in an extra warp prism and abuse the fact that lurkers need to reposition themselves. Unfortunately, the new upgrade makes doing that much easier, but it's still a downside that can be abused with well timed double pronged or triple pronged attacks. This game from Classic is a great example of how to handle this style and transition in the late game.
Hopefully this style gives anyone struggling with zerg a bit more success. It's even more safe vs early pressure builds with the addition of a 3rd adept and a later 3rd base. It has the potential added pressure of the archon drop after the two oracles and is the best style to go for if lurker compositions are giving you trouble. If anyone would like to see some more tricky/fun builds in future BotWs instead of these overall safe and solid builds then be sure to let me know.
Thank you all for reading and if you have any questions/comments please leave them below and I'll try to get to all of them!
Brought to you by the TL Strategy Team in collaboration with Overwolf and Spawning Tool.
Brought to you by the TL Strategy Team in collaboration with Overwolf and Spawning Tool.