Sunday, October 10, 2010

Learning Curve

Learning something is never easy. Starcraft least of all. I know because I am constantly trying to improve and I also watch a lot of my friends try to improve. Watching them makes me realize how much I have learned in the past and which have become so natural to me, that I have forgot that it was something that had to be learned.

I remember back in the early days of Starcraft I, I won a lot of games simply because I knew how to a-move, rather than just move my units! Amazing difference.

So I watch a friend play and I realize how much of a difference it makes that you move your screen by double tapping a control group. I.e I double tap 0 to get back to my main nexus (and that in itself is a bad habit from Brood War) and I double tap 1 to get to my main army. I do this all the time and it allows me to be in two places at once to a much larger degree than scrolling by putting the mouse courser at the edge of the screen. At Bronze level you can probably win games by doing this better than your opponent. I think.

Making enough workers is a relative simple improvement in comparison because it does not require you to learn something physical in the same way. And even though it is simpler I still see friends who have major problems making more than 20 workers. How hard can it be?

Both of the above steps is something you don’t learn gradually. One day you pass the invisible boundary between not doing it and then getting it to work and you will take a jump up the ladder as a result.

At my level I am struggling with when not to make units. I know that in some matchups like PvP a secret is that you don’t need that many units before your fourth gate, but how many do you need? And when? I’m sort of stuck at 1000 points in my division and I think I need to “get to that next level” in my PvP in order to break the barrier that will take me 200 points up the ladder.


  1. I don't have the opportunity to watch other people learn to play Starcraft, sadly, but I do agree that none of these particular skills are learned gradually. To me, getting better at playing the game is passing a series of those "invisible boundaries" that you mentioned.

    I really enjoy the fact that when you do pass a boundary, you yourself notice it at the time(at least I do) and all the times you've seen it done in replays or heard it talked about suddenly coalesce into a single thought of "Oh, I get it now!".

    Good luck getting to "that next level"!

  2. Exactly. It is that "I get it now"-feeling that goes with getting to the next level.

    And thanks btw.

  3. And I remember, back in the day when we played warcraft 2, that you came over and asked if I used the hot keys. I still highly recommend it :D

  4. And I remember back in 92' when Fafner told me that I should havest spice faster in Dune II... ;)

    - Niemann

  5. Ah, Dune 2. So many fond memories of that game. I miss my sonic tanks and my little brown Fremen infantry.

  6. Another thing i did back in War3 was i ctrl grouped my unit producing structures and rallied them to my hero that way i was always able to reinforce my troops. All RTS games have something that transfers over with them when we switch.