Friday, February 21, 2014

What's In A Build?

Friday! Yes here we are at the end of the week. All of us wondering what we are going to be doing for the weekend. Before all of that comes to pass though we have this little thing in Gauss Land known as the Reader Post. Now this week's post comes to us from Wade. We were having a discussion about build orders in Starcraft and how important they are. Why some people end up winning when they shouldn't at lower levels but then get crushed completely when moving on up. So I figured I would share something Wade had said to me so here it is.

People do irrational things in Starcraft and Starcraft 2 all the time, even win with build orders which are non-viable. Just because you won with a build order does not make it the correct thing to have done. It just means you got lucky and didn't die to a rush, or it means you have been lucky and haven't faced opponents who realized the timing of the attack would work.

Almost every major, standard build order used in casual gaming and pro gaming is actually non-viable, because it is defenseless, or nearly so against some form of rush. It gets used because people don't always understand the timing attack or rush exists.

In order to be viable, the opening of a build must have at least a 50% chance of winning, regardless of what the opponent does, otherwise what's the point?

If your build cannot stop the fastest possible rush on that map at least 50% of the time, then you should not be using it, even if people almost never use that rush.

Unfortunately, you can actually get a higher win rate over all by playing the wrong build, because people are not properly understanding the availability of these early attacks.

Things like map design change whether or not an opening build is safe. Even build which is safe on most maps is not guaranteed to be safe on ally maps. You're half a screen closer, and that makes all the difference; the build you thought was safe and reliable gets you killed.

Thanks to Wade for the conversation and thoughts. Al;so thank you to every else who sent something in. Enjoy your weekend!


  1. Why cannot people just play the game for fun and not over analyze everything about their play

  2. one does not simpily play starcraft for fun.

  3. Khulk understands it is fun to win. I am sure at low level play you can pretty much do anything and win. You have to be refined at higher level play. You timings need to be there. You don't have to do an exact build but it is helpful to understand when you scout someone what to look for so you can identify what could be coming your way