So I made a blog at the beginning of the iccup season about my goal of getting A- finally and I said I would update it periodically with my progress in both rank and knowledge. Today i made B rank which im pretty happy with as I still have half of the season left over to achieve the last two ranks http://www.iccup.com/starcraft/gamingprofile/NrG.DragOn.html
Ive come to realize more and more that how you think affects your play tremendously, and confidence in general can be the difference between an ez win and an embarassing defeat. (this applies in real life too lol) In the past I have often played with the additude of being the underdog, and i often viewed myself that way even vs players of the same skill level. This made it seem to me as if any disadvantage i had during the game was larger than it actually was, resulting in rash decisions on my part to try to make up for it, or my forgetting simple things because I was mentally intimidating myself. This is especially true in series matches, and i became known to my friends as the player who always went 1-2 in clanwars, which was pretty depressing lol. It also creates losing/winning streaks during ladder gaming, something any1 who has mass gamed can undoubtedly attest to. This weekend I had a 11 game winning streak, due entirely to my confidence in my play.
This was mainly due to two things, both involving the motw Destination. I was having a lot of trouble on that map because #1 I thought pvz was impossibly hard to play from the top position, and #2 I thought it was impossibly hard to play pvt in any position (plz dont flame me terrans who cant defend cheese) These thoughts were pretty self defeating, especially since I had what seemed like pretty solid evidence to support these conclusions, being that I had about a 15% win ratio pvz from the top, and about a 0% win ratio pvt from any position.
To start off explaining why I was so fucking bad at these matchups, I need to mention that the top position on destination is impossible to FE on. This is because the top and bottom are not reverses of each other even though they look very similar. I dont know if this is common knowledge or not, a couple people ive played did not know about it and some did, but anyway the key difference is that the mineral in back of the top position is 1 or 2 spaces farther away from your nat than the one on the bottom. This means that you cant position a cannon in your natural that will just barely be able to reach the drone trying to mine out your back entrance as is the case @ the bottom position. So this means that FEing @ the top position pvz is incredibly bad, as the zerg can mine out your back entrance free of charge at any point in time until you get your first dragoon, or else you make a an extra pylon + couple cannons above that position in your main to block it off, which would make your nexus and tech very very slow so you get a disadvantage no matter what you do in that position, unless the zerg doesnt realize your mistake and doesnt think of mining out your back. Ive actually had a protoss opponent who got the top position leave the game immediately and remake until he got the bottom lol.
The solution to this problem is obviously just to not fast expand pvz when you get the top. However, this presents the problem of what to do instead...you could 2gate!! you could hope your zerg opponent is too stupid to scout before making lings or drones, and instead only makes 2-6 lings before his overlord gets to your base and therefore loses to your 3-5 zealots that you hid in your base. I have actually lost to this as zerg and its embarassing as fuck. No zerg should ever lose this way. 2gate opening on destination is terrible because the distance between your base and his is too long for an effective zlot rush. In addition, it is easy for zergs to position their hatchery/den/evo and wall off their sunkens or at least make it very hard for the protoss to attack, so zlot rushing is definately out. This applies to a speedzealot rush as well, I have learned not to rush zerg with zealots on destination if they make their 3rd hatchery in their natural, because its just not going to do anything. Well...I could 1gate sair/dt!! Unfortunately this blows and can be killed by almost anything. The reason: As i just mentioned, zergs can wall off their natural very easily so if you cant get multiple zealots past their block its pretty unlikely that a single dt is going to do anything. This means you will be using your dts solely for defensive purposes until the zerg expands again and you might have an oportunity to kill drones. So you cant really do anything do the zerg until after each of you have multiple bases. The only advantage it has is the corsair scout. If you can keep it alive you can try to streamline your build against what he is planning, which is your only hope of getting ahead because you wont otherwise after your lack of aggression or economic growth early on. you will be walking a very thin line for a few minutes, in which the zerg can ling all in which rapes your small force of zealots and then dances around your dts killing probes and buildings, ling runby to mutas which does the same thing except avoiding your slow ass zealots instead of raping them, 2hatch hydra 3hatch hydra etc etc it just seems that you never have enough money to be able to defend all this and then afford more gateways at the same time, allowing zerg to easily contain (a huge bitch on destination)and outmacro you even if his aggression worked out unfavorably. Imo FE is far better than 1gate unless you can harass with your sair/dt which is almost impossible on destination.
Ok, so I didnt like using 2gate, 1gate tech, or FE. Thats 100% of pvz openings LOL OR IS IT? I was playing my friend NrG.YoonHo zvp on destination a few days ago and experimenting with builds, one of the builds he used was an oldschool 1gate forge expand build against me while on the top position, and it seemed to work very well against my 12hatch opening. Unfortunately, the problem with this build was that it doesnt do so well against 9pool or overpool because you cant be aggressive with 1 zlot vs 6 lings. The point of 1gate forge is to expand while zerg is occupied with your 1 zlot harassing his drones in his main. Otherwise you wont be able to expand safely off 1gate. However, the positioning of his 1st pylon allowed him to remedy that situation, and expand safely even if I had gone for an early ling build. You can make a pylon on the ridge above your natural that allows you to place a cannon in your natural from its psi field thing without having to wait for a new pylon in your natural first. This is really important because it narrows the window zergs have to attack your natural before your cannons are up, and further allows, if you are caught with your pants down and too many lings coming, to easily cancel that one cannon and retreat up your ramp again at almost no cost and losing no pylons, turning a disadvantage into an advantage. I tried it out on ladder and immediately felt that I had found the right build to use, it felt as economically and defensively solid as FE but without the drawback of leaving your backdoor unguarded. I give 100% credit for this discovery to YoonHo, that kid is a genius. (however, u still swallow my e-cum ^_^)
Here is a game I played today with that build:
here is a game where I get embarassingly raped that illustrates how bad FE is on that position:
Okay, so after that revelation, I havent lost a pvz from the top position yet
This is getting really long, so ill sum up my pvt experiences by saying that I am a really standard macro based player and that style just doesnt work on destination. Ive learned that I need to be aggressive all throughout the game and prevent the terran from taking a strong position on the map. I cant really prevent him from taking his third as its so easy to defend with the cliff of his main overlooking it, but I can try to stall his natural, damage his main, and prevent him from getting any more bases than three (this one is really important) Also, alot of the time by putting pressure on the terran you relieve pressure (harass) from yourself, so that has helped a alot because I have a hard time dealing with all the openings terran has to harass on that map. So my pvt is still bad but at least ive improved my strategy somewhat.
here are a couple pvt games ive played recently:
I hope u guys can enjoy the replays and perhaps gain something from what i have learned