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. Also, sometimes Artosis mangles my name during GSL broadcasts. Anyway, 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!
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[PvT]Dear's DT into Blink & Double ForgeIt's been a long time since we've had a PvT Dark Templar opener in build of the week. The last time was NightMare's blink DT all in over a year ago and that was basically a meme build. I've really been liking Dear's play lately so I figured I'd feature another one of his builds as he had quite a good showing at IEM Katowice.
DT into Blink & Double Forge/h5>
|16||Gate [Chrono Nexus]|
|17||Gas --> Rally probes in|
|@100% Cyber --> Stalker [Chrono] + WG|
|@100% Stalker --> 2nd Stalker|
|@100% Twilight --> Dark Shrine --> Send a probe to proxy location|
|@100% 2nd Stalker --> 3rd Stalker|
|3:40 Proxy Pylon + 3rd Gas --> 4th Gas|
|4:00 Blink + Shield Battery|
|@100% WG --> 2x DT|
|4:40 3rd Nexus|
|5:00 2x Forge|
|2-3 Rounds of stalker warp ins|
|@100% Blink --> Charge|
|~6:00 4-5x Gate + Robo|
Build Explanation & Example Game
Dear and TY face off at the IEM World Championship (1:38:00)
Link to the source replay of Dear vs TY from IEM Katowice
This build is actually quite straight-forward and doesn't require all too much explaining. Like always, there's a standard Gate-expand opening with a 20 Nexus (19 if you're a super cool hipster like me) that leads into a Chrono Boosted Stalker and a Twilight Council when you have the money available (which is usually at 26 supply). [Now, the build I've laid out is actually slightly different from the one Dear used in the example game, as I've tweaked it slightly to make it things line up more cleanly. Dear got his second Gateway earlier than necessary and delayed his Stalkers, which caused him to Chrono his third Stalker. If you just wait to make the extra Gateways at the same time and get your Stalkers one after the other, then you won't have to worry about doing that. You'll have a slight pause in Probe production to get the two Gateways down at 38 supply, but other than that you won't need to cut anything. Those two Gates at 38 allow them to both finish right alongside Warp Gate and the Dark Shrine so it's nice and clean.]
When your Twilight Council finishes you can make a Dark Shrine right away, and at the same time send out a Probe to warp in a proxy Pylon at an opportune spot for Dark Templars. Before the Probe arrives to place that proxy Pylon, you can start building your third Stalker and another Pylon in your base so you don't end up getting supply blocked (and so that if your Terran opponent is actually counting pylons, they won't notice one missing). Your third Assimilator should be warped in right after the proxy Pylon at around 3:40, with your fourth Assimilator following the completion of your third (if that's too annoying for you, then just get both at the same time). At 4:00, which is shortly before Warp Gate research completes, you can start Blink and get a safety Shield Battery at your expansion if you want.
Like I said before, your Gateways, Warp Gate, and Dark Shrine will all finish at the same time, so you can warp in two Dark Templars right away (three if you really wanna YOLO). Be sure to split your DTs up and send one to each base, forcing Terran to divide their attention and expend as many scans as possible. If Terran messes up and thinks the first DT is the only one, then the second DT can do an insane amount of damage. In the example game, Dear is able to deal a fair amount of damage even though TY has a Raven complete right when the DTs walk up his ramp. If you want to be safe in case Terran has detection and an army waiting at the ramp, send one DT in first to draw attention (and to be sure it doesn't auto-die to a widow mine or something) and then send the second DT in when the coast is clear.
Behind the Dark Templar harass you should be getting your third Nexus and two Forges. In the example game, Dear warps in multiple rounds of Stalkers to continue to dominate the map and ends up using them to kill TY outright. That's a very optimistic outcome which was only possible because of Dear's good micro against TY's tech-heavy opener. Against 3-Barracks or other infantry oriented openers, the Stalkers are meant to take potshots at units and generally annoy/delay the Terran as their bio army marches across the map for an attack (good Stalker harassment can buy you enough time to get extra Shield Batteries or allow your extra Gateways to finish). After establishing map presence with Stalkers, you can drop down some extra Gateways and a Robotics Facility at around 6:00 to continue going into a relatively normal PvT mid-game. The example game ended before Dear could fully transition, but just going into Blink-Charge-Immortal and Storm soon after is a very solid and standard follow-up to a build like this.
Scouting Notes and Potential Variations
While this can be a fun build to punish some greedy Terrans, it isn't the safest opening you could go for. There's some early pressure builds by Terran that hit before the Dark Templars are out, and if you don't take them into account, then you'll just roll over and die with only three Stalkers out to defend. Things like 4-Cyclone openers or the 2-Cyclone-2 Hellion-Marine push can be very punishing to players that don't scout for them.
It's important to do a re-scout with your original scouting Probe to best figure out what kind of opening the Terran might be going for. After seeing a normal opening from a Terran player, they could be making either a Marine or Reaper as their first Barracks unit. A Marine will normally pop out at around 1:50—if there's no Marine to chase your scouting Probe around by that time, it means Terran went for a Reaper instead. Upon confirming that there's no Marine forthcoming at 1:50, send your Probe outside the Terran base to a hidden place on the map. Wait until around 2:25 to send your Probe back in for a second scouting run (this is right after your Cybernetics Core should be finished, so once you make your Stalker and Warp Gate you can send the Probe back). This timing should allow your Probe to get into the Terran base for a second time while their Reaper is moving across the map to scout you. In a best case scenario, Terran will have forgotten to close the wall on their ramp, and you'll get in and see everything. But even when Terrans wall off, many of them have the habit of placing buildings right by the top of the ramp anyway.
If you see a Factory, then you'll know they're doing a fast tech build. That means some sort of pre-5:00 aggression is coming your way, be that a Widow Mine drop, early Cyclones, or some other combination of units. If nothing chases your Probe away, try to wait around until the Reactor is done so you can see what they do with it. If Terran leaves the Barracks on the Reactor, that most likely means it's a Mine drop. If you see Terran switch the Factory onto the Reactor, then you should be worried about early Hellions or Cyclones. The latter requires earlier Shield Batteries to stop (3:30 is usually when the Cyclone builds start to push across the map so be sure you have a Shield Battery or two done around then). If you really want to be safe, send another Probe across the map to patrol around the Terran entrance to see when, or if, they move across the map. Stalkers aided by Shield Batteries and some Probe militia will be more than enough to deal with such an attack, but if you want to be even safer you can Chrono out the next Stalker in production.
In a normal game, you can also alter the build a bit to be safer if you aren't comfortable with taking such an early third base and double Forge with only Blink Stalkers. You can delay the third base a little bit and get an earlier Robo around the time you're warping in Dark Templars. This will give you earlier access to Immortals and Observers if you feel safer having a more robust army at home with vision everywhere, instead of relying on the more micro intensive Stalkers to keep you alive. You would also only get one Forge at first with an early Robo, adding a second Forge once you've secured your third base. After that, the game would basically unfold the same way. Add extra gates around the six minute mark, and power hard with Blink-Charge-Immortal into Storm.
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.