The Shokz Guide, Starcraft 2 Guide

Starcraft 2 Protoss Beginners Guide

This is meant as a read for people coming in fresh without much experience with the race (or maybe even SC as a series). It is ment as a frame for players to build on, just having something to go by in the beginning before finding your own way to play. I’ll discuss starting BO and unit choices vs the different races.

Starting build:

I have found that a good rhythm is to build the following:

1) Order your workers to mine (wont have cash for 2nd worker if you start building one before ordering)
2) Build your first probe(Shortcut E), keep building probes untill you are at 9/10 supply.
3) After queueing the worker that will take you to 9/10 you are looking to save up 100 minerals to build your first pylon. (Shortcut B-E)
4) After the pylon is placed you should have enough minerals for the last worker taking you to 10/10.
5) As soon as the pylon is done building queue up two more workers taking you to 12/18. Use your first Chrono boost and keep using it every time you know you can build two workers in a row. Later use it on your gateway and Robotics bay/Stargate to get your first tier 2 units out quick!
6) When you have got 150 minerals after building the 12th worker it is time to place your first gateway (Shortcut B-G).
7) Sometime after this you should build one Assimilator to be ready to build your second tier buildings. Move 2 or 3 Probes to get gas as soon as it is done.
7) After that I build up workers untill around 16/18, place a second pylon and build my first Zealot along with a Cybernetics Core.
8) With Cyb. Core done build your second Assimilator and move 3 probes into it when it is done.

And last but not least SCOUT! This is the most important part of SC2 and if you dont scout I can bet you 50% of your losses could have been avoided had you scouted properly:-)

Depending on map and how your start is going send one of your first 15 workers directly out scouting, what you are looking for are clues to what your opponent is planning to do. Usually you are looking for one of these things:

T1 rush - lots of racks and early units. Means you’re gonna be in for a tough time defending your base if you’re teching. Get Forge and Cannons ASAP and you need to learn to micro your sentries well:-)

T2 Tech - meaing he’ll come at you with tanks if he is Terran and Mutalisks (usually) if he is Zerg. Check for the specific buildings and learn what they are needed for. Then make sure you create the units best used to kill your opponent’s

Fast exp - If he goes for a fast expansion you can 99% of the time easily take him down with a T1 rush as he would have spent all his minerals on the expansion. Buildings go down very easily in SC2 and you will be able to hurt him BAD if you attack before he has anything to defend himself with. Go for his workers. In WC3 you only needed 5 workers for max income, in SC2 you need 20. Take them down and you got the game for sure.

Air rush - He will go for alot of air units (Mutalisks, Void Reapers or Bansee/Reaver’s) and kill any unsuspecting enemies that did not scout and prepare for “Death from above”. Having scouted it though you’ll have a host of Stalkers/phoenix/voidreavers yourself waiting to give him a hard time. Make sure you dont have only 2-3 Phoenix’ though because they’ll just get taken down at once and be money wasted. Sentinels are actually good anti-air units, only drawback is that they are not mobile and if your opponent is smart he’ll fly back and forth and harass your base. A nice way to deal with this can be to do the same to him. Have a small force of zealots go to his base and kill his workers while your sentinels are in your base fending off his air units. If he has rushed to air he wont have a big ground force covering his base.

Your own builds:

Each option should be chosen based on what you saw when you scouted the opposition.

- Fast tech, meaning one gate pumping zealots and a few sentires to fend off attacks. Use the Sentry’s F shortcut to create forcefields blocking opponent out of your base on the ramp. Preferably splitting their force in two thus killing off a few of them with your zealots while the others are blocked out. Your pylon and gateway should be built on the ramp helping the blocking out of enemies. Building only one gate allows you a quicker Cybernetics Core and thus leads into the two fast tech choices:

- Stargate, going Stargate (shortcut V-S) means usually a Void Reaver rush taking out opponents buildings, this is a mid-game rush. If not then Carriers (after building a Fleet Beacon, shortcut V-F) can win it for you late game if your opponent has not taken you down by then;-) Carries simply take too long to build for a mid-game rush IMO.

A neat trick is to attack with your ground force (should be a few zealots, sentries and stalkers by that time) at the enemies expansion or ramp while moving your Void Reavers in from behind his base and take out his main and then any building capable of producing anti-air units. His focus should be on the ramp thus not noticing the havoc inside the base:-)

- Robotics Bay (shortcut V-R), This usually means a mid-game push with 1-2 immortals or a Colossus shielded by zealots, sentry and stalkers. It is important to have a sizeable force to protect the damage dealing Immortals/Colossus or they are taken down fast. Usually if you want to go with a mid-game push it is wise to have more than one gateway and probably upgrade them to Warp gates. The research only costs 50minerals and 50 Gas and will allow you to get reinforcements alot faster in what is likely to be a siege attack that could win you the game.

Immortal: Great vs buildings and if the opponent is going for tier 2 units himself. Huge bonus vs armored so rips tanks and the like apart. Also quicker to get out than Colossus so you can usually go faster with immortal. Tradeoff usually is to go with either 2 immortal and catch the opponent before he has teched to his T2 stuff or go 1 colossus and give your opponent more time.

Colossus: Absolutely rips through T1 forces. With 5-10 Zealots infront of it making sure it stays alive you’ll take out 20-30 Marines, zerglings and even roaches in no-time! After rushing with your first Colossus make sure you start building anotherone and set the waypoint to where you attack. If your opponent is good he is likely to take down your first one eventually. Unfortunately for him you got one coming up right behind it and will in most cases if your first attack was succesfull result in a GG.

A neat trick with Colossus is the cliff-walk ability. Most bases in SC2 are up on a hill with a ramp leading up to it. Terrans esp. like to have siege tanks here shooting at anything coming in from below, your Colossus can shoot at these tanks from the area below. They can also be used to harass since most other units cannot move up/down here you can run your Colossus into the base “from behind” and take down a building or two, when the opponent comes running to the back of his base you just move away. If you at the same time then move your main force up his ramp you’ll be able to do some damage before he can move his main force back to the ramp. Going back and forth like this can descimate your opponent and land you a nice win! Remember this ability when running away too, you can loose chasers by moving up a hill when they have to run around it to get to you.

- Tier 1, going two Gateways before getting your cyb. core and then focussing on getting alot of Zealots/Sentries/Sentinels as fast as possible can mean a win and sometimes merely surviving vs opponents doing the same thing. If he is bunker rushing you or throwing alot of zerglings at you remember that forge and cannons are your friend. If you’re going mass T1 yourself (popular in mirror matches) then remember that if you dont slowly tech while getting all this T1 you will get killed by an enemy who did build that one robotics bay to get Immortals/Colossus and the likes. Warp gate is a must here and a cheap upgrade at the cyb. core. Build a pylon next to your enemy to warp in reinforcements right at his base. Usually I take a worker with me for my first wave. If you dont win early you are almost forced to go into High Templars or Dark Templars. As you are stuck with alot of warp gates and need to use them for something;-) Read more about using them in the End-Game section.

Remember that to keep up with your income you are gradually going to need more warp gates, having 4-6 is not uncommon and will make you able to build up quickly after being knocked back by your enemy.


Whether you chose to go T1 rush or mid/late game push with Robotics bay a nice way to flesh out your forces as the game goes on is to build a Twilight Council (Shortcut V-C) to get either Dark Templars or High Templars. Only go Dark Templars if you can see your enemy will need alittle time to get detectors up. Otherwise go High Templars for their Psi Storm and Feedback abilities, they are also cheaper and cost mostly Gas so you’ll be able to get alot of other units alongside them. This will complement your allready existing army and give you enough strength to prevail in a late game. Still going at it with just Immortals/Colossus after your first and second wave has failed will loose you the game.

If you went Stargate the Carriers is the wise choice, my best tip here is to forget about ground forces as your opponent is probably allready stronger there and now preparing to fend off air thus you’ll need to have air superiority. If you went Void Reaver then upgrade to carriers and get some phoenix for support in the meantine. If you allready went for carriers then the only answer is more Cowb.. sorry Carriers with phoenix support and maybe a Void reaver or two if you have them lying around after your Mid-game push. Dark reavers could be a nice supplement but again mostly if he does not have any sentry units. Air is so good because of it’s mobility and use that for all it’s worth. Late game usually is all about map controll and making sure you have expansions while opponents do not. Roam the map and take out what you find undefended. Only fight if you are confident of victory since you probably have the upper hand in mobility and can choke his income.

General tips:

- Always scout your opponents expansions, having as many or more expansions than your opponent can ensure victory amongst evenly skilled players. If he has an expansion you get one yourself as he is probably worried about defending his own and will be less on offense during that part of the game.

- If you’re allready in mid-game and not alot of fighting has happened there is a definite chance your opponent is going for some sort of stealth attack. (Banshee’s, Dark Templars etc.) So get some cannons up in your base as they are sentires and will spot them. Otherwise your workers will be dead before you can do anything and Game Over:-)

- For more detailed information about units, buildings, abilities etc. check out this very nice overview at the SC2ARMORY page: Starcraft 2 Armory - Protoss Overview

- WATCH REPLAYS! Cannot be said strongly enough, watch replays of “pro” players doint their thing. You’ll pick up a ton of tips and tricks. You’ll also learn how the different matchups can be won. Having trouble with Terran? Go watch alot of PvT replays and you’ll quickly see what works and dont work.

Here is a good site for good rep’s: GosuGamers | Replays

Esp. important is to go check out the replay of any matches you just lost. You’ll learn so much from watching replays of your own losses. Usually it is hard to find what lost you the game while playing (esp. if you’re alittle busy with micro/macro like me to be able to see the whole picture sometimes). But watching the replay it will probably jump out at you quickly. Remember you can fast forward so you dont have to watch the entire replay in normal speed, a replay can usually be watched in full in about 5-10 minutes using the FF and pause functions to find the interesting parts:-)

- Colossus can be fired upon by Air to Air units, so the Phoenix can be used to take down Colossus. Given that the Colossus can only hit ground units it can work quite well:-)

- Warp Gate rush in PvP is a strat made popular by a Korean gamer (shocking.. named ChangDuSeop who used it in a tournament called easyXP in Korea. Can be countered with triple warpgates and/or Forge/Cannon + gate.


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