Match 1:  [PC] attacks Roughnecks at Gotterdammerung, 1/11/99
[PC]Musashi/Protoss and [PC]Bean/Protoss vs Blue-RN/Protoss and Tom-RN/Zerg
Result:  VICTORY

Finally, a match where the opposition shows!  This fight was over the Roughneck planet Gotterdammerung, using the cyclone map.  It was played by Bean and I vs. Blue and Tom of the Roughnecks.  The Roughnecks are ranked #1 in the Deathlands league at the time of this writing, and are aggressively attacking all over the place.  When I finally got into the chat room (after 3 hours of being unable to log onto Bnet), they had just smacked around The Flock, who were  comically pleading for them to withdraw their attacks and ally with them.

Here I display my incredible ignorance of the league rules.  8~/  I should read more carefully… and slap league admin Abaddon for changing them without sending me a messenger bearing the needed information.  (Actually I asked about this and the default is SUPPOSED to be Normal unless agreed otherwise, but Abaddon sucks and didn’t write it in.  8P)  Oh well, I suck…  This did make me a little nervous, since actually I happen to like the 40+ minute game at normal speed, since I find the complex endgame to be interesting, much more so than "me make units, me send units, me make more units" which, with a few variations, is what happens a lot in Faster+ games.  Well what are ya gonna do; I just downed some more caffiene (to compensate for the scotch I’d been drinking) and had my cigarettes close at hand.

The game was played at speed Faster, which I have to admit I never really played at before.  Anyway, here’s what happened, since I was so frantic about unit control I didn’t get good shots during the match:

Both enemies went random, which is a good tactical ploy during a league game, since the enemy can’t autoprep for you based on race choice.  I have to admit I was a little worried that we were up against typical Bnet rushers whose idea of "strategy" was waiting for the last second before entering their racial pick… fortunately this wasn’t true.

Bean and I started lower left and top left respectively.  I just kinda stayed in my base and tried to figure out how to play at Faster without dying right away and built hella zealots.  I have no idea what Bean was doing.  Early recon showed where they were:  Blue upper right protoss, Tom lower right zerg.

Naturally, the first attack was vs me… 6 lings and a few zealots, no doubt trying to probe for info and kill my workers.  When I saw them coming, I thought I was about to get gang raped, and called for help, but when they died, no more came.  I lost a couple, but no problem, with all my wasteful forces standing around with nothing else to do.  Immediately Bean and I charged at Blue with about, umm, 30-40 zealots.  Our attack could have been better, but wtf I could barely mine at this speed.  The gorefest continued, and Blue’s main was wiped out in due time, despite assistance from a couple of friendly zerg along the way.  He did manage to escape with some probes though, and started building again… somewhere.  I did destroy a pylon, 2 cannon and a forge in the middle of nowhere on my way to Tom, but he was apparently building a nexus somewhere else.  (I didn’t find him, but figured I had time to deal with him later.)  The pylon/forge thing was probably the desperation building, the thing you make to stay in the game when you are getting killed.

About this time, Tom started hitting Bean with Mutas… when I heard this, I was sucking so much on tech I had just started making goons, so I did what any loyal teammate would do… sent all my forces right at Tom, ignoring Bean!  Bean pulled his workers away, and apparently a lot of them managed to survive the muta attack.  The headed up for me next, where I was hastily warping in photons and building 3 gates’ worth of goons, and a similar situation ensued… my probes all ran to the photons and escaped (mostly).  I figure what Tom did was shift-attack our respective mineral patches, figuring the mutas would run to Bean, kill his probes, run to me, kill my probes, and come home or something, so he probably wasn’t even watching them fight, and didn’t notice when our workers escaped.

Tom had other things to pay attention to, as about this time, all our zealots were hitting Tom’s base, which had some mutas, a couple of sunkens, and some zerglings (if I remember correctly; I wasn’t paying attention).  At this point I was pumping dragoons, but didn’t commit them… sure the mutalisks would kill a bunch of my zealots, but who cares… they were downing buildings left and right, and I wanted at least 6-8 dragoons before tossing them into mutalisk city, plus I wanted more free command points without hassling with pylons.  8P  I figured at this point, the zealots could wipe the base, then the survivors would run back like idiots to my shield batteries, with the mutas following them into goon/photon land.  This would leave Blue with some half-formed stuff somewhere and Tom crippled (if not dead), ready to be finished… I was sending observers out at this point to find out where they snuck off to.

Right then, Tom’s connection died for some reason, and it was a long time before any of us hit the "Drop Player" button, since a lost connection at this point is sure to be grounds for all sorts of dispute nonsense.  Finally, it was hit (not by me!), Blue said, "What bullshit" and dropped from the game.  Sigh… disputes here we come.

This is a shot during the countdown to lost connection-land.  Minimap tells all:  notice the dead grey area where Blue used to live, the mass of green and orange in Tom’s town (hella zealots), and the purple in the center; those are mutalisks, flying by my observer, going to get rid of my zealots while I send my surviving probes back to work and pump more goons.  Blue’s expansion is hiding somewhere in the black areas; my observer was heading for the one he had easy access to to find out what was cooking there.  Tom no doubt had an early strip mine expansion… I was thinking of doing the same as the zerg on this map,  since everyone starts with a reasonably safe expansion, and the zerg can take advantage faster than anyone.  Notice my low low mins… I was producing mad units and upgrades.  If Tom had been a little more vigilant about killing my workers it may have been a problem; in that case I was just going to suicide everything to destroy him and let Bean, who was doing fine, kill the crippled Blue.

This is Blue’s main right after disconnection.  Hatchery 1 is down, no colonies in sight anymore, drones are long gone, hatching Mutalisks being joined by the ones from my base, and a big juicy lair calling out to my suicidal troops.  I was about to look around for the spire.
This is a bit of Bean’s base, goons standing vigilant, peons back to their drudgery after the mutas foolishly left.  My base was similar, but of course had a much prettier layout.  8P  Question:  when has a handful of goons beaten 12 mutas?  Answer:  when they have mad upgrades and 2 dozen zealots are destroying your spire.  8P
Here’s a bit of my base.  You can see the edge of one of my new goons hanging out here, and another wing of zealots forming up at the bottom.  Support my attack on Tom?  Pshaw… zealots fear not death!  My happy probes are to the north, picking up where they left off.

That stupid screen with the awful MIDI march in the background.  That friggin Bean has somehow weaseled his way into the lead.  Tom was leading on units and resources, which will be looked at in the following shots…

Tom produced hella units, the typical way for the zerg… every building starts out as a unit, and lings are big on numbers.  A lot of those kills were courtesy of sunken colony city, which took a toll on our mindlessly vicious zealots.  I’m trying to figure out how we killed 48 of his units, since the goons hadn’t gone muta hunting yet and we seemed to be mostly fighting buildings at the end.  Lotta lings and drones, I suppose.

I don’t understand this… in the shot of Tom’s base you can clearly see 3 recently-dead zerg buildings, not counting the hatchery.  I lost one cannon as it was warping in and a pylon or something.  There also isn’t credit here for Blue’s other buildings, which must have been there somewhere because he wasn’t out of the game.  Friggin Bnet.

This is interesting… Bean must have forgotten to put more probes on gas after the muta hit, the moron.  8P  Tom was mining like crazy, obviously went for early gas to facilitate the muta tech tree.

Ah the wonders of Bnet, as their amazing chat servers make it almost impossible to have any kind of conversation.  My chat was lagged by about 3 minutes or more, and many couldn’t see me at all.  here I’m trying to explain what happened to Yoda as Kel acts like a dumb shit.  8P  Apparently, since I wanted to play at normal there was a lot of shit talk from some of the RN about it…  "Only newbies play at normal"… which prompted a bunch of nonsense from my intricate endgame master friends.  I keep hearing this about "the best players play at faster", but I disagree… the best FASTER players play at faster.  People have no idea what they’re missing by just pumping units and  sending them out… StarCraft can actually be a strategic game at normal speeds.  Please, people… GET A CLUE.

During this madness of me trying to tell Yoda what happened, Yoda trying to read my chat 5 minutes late, and Kel being a loser, Tom managed to reconnect, no small feat considering how his ISP was sucking and how I couldn’t get onto Bnet for hours.  After a while of this, Yoda asked me to relog, and I accepted… the WORST thing I could have done.  Bnet wouldn’t let me get anywhere near it, and eventually Yoda, Bean and I retired to ICQ which, although also buggy as hell, was about 300% more reliable than Bnet at this point.  I’m beginning to think Ultima Online servers are the greatest ever.

The conversation went on in the chat, with people yelling at (and squelching) Kel, Blue insisting that 12 mutalisks could have saved his nearly-dead base (he didn’t see the goon squads forming, or the other zealots heading over), and all sorts of nonsense going on.  In ICQ Yoda, Bean and I came to the agreement that if possible, we would replay in 2 hours, or else they would eat the loss, but naturally Bean got drunk as hell or something at his birthday party, and my late night snack run turned into a Broadway production on the icy roads of New Jersey, and when I logged back into Bnet (about 3AM EST or a little later) I was alone.  Sigh…

All in all I think this match went pretty well.  Problems:  I needed to be less spastic playing at Faster, and probably should have gone for some early Templars, but was unsure of my ability to micromanage them at this speed.  Actually, since the muta raids did minimal damage, the templars would have only served the purpose of quelling this "12 mutalisks = sure win" argument once and for all, but since I was going ground anyway, I could have afforded them (I already had cyber core/forge/citadel/robotics bay/observatory).  I thought our opponents played well, although their cooperation was a little lacking, and they seem to place too much importance on the presence of mutalisks, which I don’t really see as problematical unless none of the enemy has been damaged yet or they come in HUGE packs; zealots can safely ignore them and live long enough to deal with the base, especially upgraded (I think Bean and I had attack 1, shield 1 or 2, and speed upgrade, plus range upgrade for the goons).




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