Spoilers ahead! Protect your children, wives and StarCraft lovin’ mothers.
Well what an interesting couple of weeks it has been for StarCraft fans! Taking up much of the week, the Global Starcraft Team League (GSTL) finals were held in Las Vegas, followed by Round of 32 (Ro32) for the 2012 Season Two of GSL.
Big players such as StarTale_July (Z), StarTale_Parting (P), BboongBboong_Prime (Z), MarineKingPrime (T) and StarTale_Bomber (T) came together in Las Vegas, Nevada to battle it out with one another.
Game 1 was held between StarTale_July (Z) and MaruPrime (the youngest pro-player in StarCraft II, being 14). July went for a very uncharacteristic macro play, getting a very fast third base on Cloud Kingdom, leading into Infestor/Ling/Bane play.
Maru scouted well and used a Raven and two Banshee’s to harass the third of July; the Raven having a Point Defence Drone that will block every single missile-type attack that is sent near the drone, keeping the Banshee’s alive. Further Siege Tank/Marine/Medivac play gave Maru the ability to methodically take July down.
For Game 2 StarTale brought out Parting, their Protoss powerhouse. Playing on Calm Before the Storm, the most Macro-heavy map in the GSTL, with a natural expansion behind your main base, forcing your opponent to get some air units to get into the natural expansion. Due to the very big map size, Maru managed to get a hidden expansion on the opposite side of the map, giving him a significant economic advantage.
The game went into a base-trade situation, where Maru could easily make a whole new base with his hidden expansion. However after losing his entire army during the base-trade, Maru had a third of the supply of Parting, who managed to scout it shortly before rampaging through it with Zealots, Collosus and Stalkers, forcing a GG.
Being tied at one apiece, Prime brought out BboongBboongPrime out, a Zerg player that has a win rate of 1.44 : 1. Parting used two Dark Templars to harass the Zerg base, taking out a evolution chamber and a spawning pool, quite heavily setting back BboongBboong.
The Zerg player did not appear to have a general plan after this, upgrading to Broodlord technology straight from Ling/Roach play. Parting dominated the game from the beginning and he quickly ended it after placing a Nexus inside of the Zerg base, successfully taunting the Zerg to surrender.
Game 4 and beyond
Game 4 is where things got exciting, with the recent winner of MLG Winter Arena, MarineKingPrime playing against StarTale_Parting.
Seeing as MarineKingPrime has one of the best TvP styles and StarTale_Parting has one of the best PvT styles, this was sure to be a great match. MarineKing going for a heavy Bio-army, for which he is known to be one of the greatest Bio-controllers currently in the game.
Parting went for High Templars, Zealots and Archon/Stalker unit composition. Having the ability to cast Storms on top of the Terran player, precision control is required to maintain a high supply. MarineKing showed some far superior moves by micro-splitting his army the instant a storm is cast.
It was at 26 minutes of game-time that the game got…interesting. Parting was inside of MarineKing’s production facilities, having 16 Zealots, six Stalkers and eight High Templars at his disposal, with a Void Prism backing this army up allowing him to warp in his units inside of MarineKing’s base, clearly going to win against MarineKings three Marauders and six Viking army.
However, Blizzards love of the internet struck again, with MarineKing disconnecting before he could surrender to Parting. The crowd was not happy, chanting “We Want Lan!”, as StarCraft II does not have LAN capabilities, all matches having to be played through the internet. This of course does not allow lag-free games, even when the two players are sitting next to each other. It took over half an hour for the judges of the game to come up with a verdict, with a rematch being called.
They did not necessarily have a choice, as any number of mistakes by Parting could have led to MarineKing somehow taking out Parting instead. For the second game both players went for the same strategies, however MarineKing rushing in at eleven minutes with Stim/+1 Attack/Medivacs. This attack dealt a lot of damage to Parting, however it got repelled and both players transitioned into a macro game. Shortly before maxing-out his supply, MarineKing pushed out yet again with fully upgraded Marines and Marauders to take out Parting.
MarineKing then went on a rampage, taking out StarTale_Bomber (T) with another base-trade situation occurring. StarTale_Squirtle (P) fell after, with MarineKing using heavy Marine/Marauder/Medivac play yet again to storm straight past Squirtle’s base.
Being 2-4 towards the Prime team, MarineKing needed one more win to secure victory for his team. Knowing this, StarTale_Curious (Z) was called out, being the player that took down MarineKing when the two teams played each other in the Ro8. MarineKing yet again, showing his Bio-force prowess played brilliantly, denying Curious’s third and fourth repetitively and having 200/200 supply compared to the Zerg players 73/102 supply. MarineKing decides to end it, pulling every single on of his workers to use as a buffer and attack with unstoppable force.
The event was casted by Wolf and Khaldor, with the two being relatively new at casting and Khaldor having a very difficult french accent, the casting is sometimes hit-and-miss. For example, Wolf would say that the Terran player is going for a specific timing, say with +1 attack, and the player ends up sitting in his base and continues to macro, leaving your palm reaching for your face.
Code S has also started off really well this season, with many upsets had in the first two weeks. Round of 32 saw 16 players advance, with several great competitors (such as MVPGenius, IM_MVP, FXOLeenock) along with crowd favourites MarineKingPime and Quantic_Naniwa being among the few who got through.
Being half way through the Ro16, four players have proceeded to the Ro8, oGs_SuperNova, Liquid_Hero, IM_Mvp and Quantic_NaNiWa. NaNiWa being the first non-Korean player to advance this far into Code S – will he be able to do us proud? After being banned from Code S last season for throwing a game in MLG Providence, it will surely be a slap to the face of GSL when he can stand on the podium in first place the following season.
With Code A starting this week your will not have a shortage of matches to watch, with every first match of each VOD available (for free) on gomtv.net. Remember that should you catch the live stream most weekdays at around 6pm, Brisbane time, and with Code A you can also choose between two games at a time, with gomtv dual-streaming due to the large amount of competitors.
Inner’s Guide Time
I will try and give you readers a tasty treat each time I give you guys an update of the scene, beginning with basics and working upwards. Week One, you say?
Working with an army of Marauders and Hellions is good enough, however when your Zerg opponent drops 30 Mutalisks in your lap you may as well call it a day, seeing as you have nothing that can hit air units. Try your best to give all of the bases covered, and keep in mind that the matchup is very important in what you units you will need to train.
You will find the Liquipedia a great start, follow some of the strategies that you can find, read the overviews and general information and you will start to get a grasp on the idea of how to play. Building the correct units is essential in climbing the ladder, and getting out of Bronze league.
Unit composition is tricky to grasp, and generally does not come in to play until silver/gold leagues. Getting out of bronze will require you to know which unit does well against which other unit.
I will cover Scouting, knowing what your opponent is going for is very important.
Well I am tired now, I wish you all a very happy weekend.
Hugs and Kisses, Inner.
Read the latest news regarding CBS Interactive and MLG here. If you need more Starcraft II action or just need to know what the hell Inner is talking about, read our handy StarCraft II: What You Need to Know.