StarCraft 2 Beginner's Guide
StarCrafty is often referred to as the "Most competitive 1v1 game" and as such, breaking into it as a new player is extremely difficult. ...
StarCraft 2 is a Real Time Strategy (RTS) game that has held its own and evolved competitively since last decade when it was released. The game is most of the time played 1on1, which is also the case when it comes to StarCraft 2 esports. This game by Blizzard Entertainment features three unique Races, the human representative in the Terran, The technologically advanced alien race Protoss, and the hungry terrorizing Zerg swarm.
StarCraft is known as the godfather of esports, as it has shaped the esports scene as we know it today. It all kicked off in South Korea as StarCraft: Brood War was being played by a huge amount of the populations and tournaments hit the official TV channels. The long awaited sequel SC2 hit the market in 2010 and has since been very popular, even if it has fallen behind some of the most popular competitive games of today. The high skill ceiling together with the game being played 1on1 might have had a lot to do with the rise of other team based games. Either way, SC2 is still popular and has a big crowd of fanatic fans. IEM Katowice is one of the biggest events for SC2 esports every year together with ESL Pro League, which has replaced the classic WCS.
Each race has their own pros and cons, regardless of what some people will tell you. Mastering each one isn’t very likely as this game requires a lot of dedication to time played in order to climb the ranks.
If you want to play Protoss then play Protoss, If you want to play Terran then play Terran, same goes for Zerg. There isn’t one race that is the sole optimal race, there is only optimal levels of play for each race and whoever is the faster and more efficient player is going to win in the matchup.
Before jumping into competitive play, the game has a predecessor and there are nine campaigns in total between the two games and their expansions. Before you make a decision on which race to play, we would suggest playing through the campaigns and choosing your favorite race in the narrative to take into the competitive scene. You can read more about the differences between Protoss, Terran and Zerg in our guides for playing the game.
StarCraft 2 offers the player a game with more depth than likely any other, strategy comes in at every facet of the game. Knowledge is power and knowing what counters what is super important, being able to react to what your opponent is doing will increase your ability to play as or against any race. StarCraft 2 is available via the Blizzard Launcher, the most played mode is Ranked 1v1. There is also Ranked 2v2, 3v3, and 4v4, although they are less prominent and don’t factor into competitive modes at all. There are non ranked versions of these modes as well which offer a more carefree way to practice.
For more casual players StarCraft 2 has a lot to offer, on top of the initial game modes there is a Co-op mode where you select a major character from the game to play as and team up with a friend or random person to complete a random mission at varying difficulties.
There is also a huge arcade that features community made games, some of which are just absolutely worth checking out such as Direct Strike, Micro Battles and Marine Arena just to name a few. With that in mind make sure to check into the Arcade to find a game that's more your style, there are plenty of maps and mods that there is something for everyone.
Yes. StarCraft’s pro scene is however a little different than the normal team based esport. It has evolved over the years and while there are esports organizations that host StarCraft pros, it normally isn’t more than one with the exception of a few such as Jin-Air and Psystorm. Tournaments host the initial qualifier rounds that follow into a group stage then a bracket stage. Qualifiers have a huge number of players usually in the range of 64-128, and whittle down to 6-64 for the group stages depending on the tournament.
Tournaments like the Global StarCraft 2 League (GSL) in Korea have multiple group stages and filter into their bracket stage when only eight players remain. Many of the biggest tournaments and leagues are held only for Korean players, but the biggest events every year are held worldwide. After years of Korean domination it has been a fresh wind of air that Finnish Joona “Serral” Sotala has risen up as the highest ranked player in the world. It has truly given the game new life in the western region and it might just be more popular than ever.
StarCraft 2 ranks are based solely off of Match Making Rating (MMR). There are seven ranks and the first five, Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum and Diamond contain three tiers while Masters and Grandmasters are based off of the highest MMR players have.
Once you reach a certain MMR threshold you will be promoted to the next rank, reversely if you drop below an MMR threshold you will be demoted in rank. Those playing at the Masters and GM ranks move up and down positions out of the top 250 players or so.
Yes, betting on StarCraft 2 works the same way as betting on any other esports game, or traditional sport too. The game might not be the most popular in the world right now and as such is not offered by every betting site. To learn which ones do offer it you can check out our operator reviews to find out! SC2 betting can be very entertaining as the game is one of the fastest and skill intense there is, but it also requires good knowledge and background work to succeed in.
As StarCraft 2 truly is one of the staples in esports history you might be interested in delving a bit deeper. Whether you are interested in playing the game, watching it or taking the leap to betting on it - we got you covered with our guides that cover all of those topics! We truly recommend you to check this timeless classic out and it’s definitely never too late. StarCraft 2 has been popular for a long time, but it still keeps people invested to this day and more than likely for a long time to come.
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