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Battle Report 4: David Kim’s Terrible Terrible Damage

The fourth Battle Report has been officially released! The battle report has been leaked to the net a couple of days ago, but now’s your chance to download a high-quality version straight from Blizzard’s official page, where you can also opt to watch it streaming along with the transcription of the shoutcast. The current Battle Report takes place in the StarCraft 2 incarnation of the legendary Lost Temple – an original StarCraft 2v2 ladder map that was extremely popular for 1v1s as well.

Lost Temple

StarCraft 2’s version of the Lost Temple has the following distinctive terrain features:

  • Very narrow main base choke points
  • Unlike the classic version, the top player’s natural expansion is placed to the left, at 11:00, instead of 01:00
  • Two Xel’Naga watch towers are placed at key center locations
  • Destructible Rocks block high yield mineral mining spots
  • High ground locations have been “standardized” to eliminate the original Lost Temple’s slight imbalances

The match itself is as fast and brutal as all StarCraft 2 games we’ve witnessed to this point. However, it was different in some key aspects, many dependent on the nature of the map, which has most of the minerals in the surrounding areas and a large open space in the middle.

It was very apparent that the Terran player, David Kim, prepared for a long game. He invested in an Orbital Command to call down Mules and gain an economic advantage very early on – just after constructing his first Barracks, in fact. Later, only 5 minutes into the game, he builds two command centers concurrently, floating one to his natural and another to the island. The Protoss player, Yeon-Ho Lee, had his natural expansion up at that point as well. The Terran also carefully blocked the entrance to his main base using the crucial “Gateway” Supply Depots, denying the Protoss important information about his base and making any early attack virtually impossible.

Double Command Center next to the blocked ramp

The battles between the two opponents went back and forth with their large standing armies, but also took place in their naked home fronts. Both players successfully harassed each other’s mineral lines many times, scoring important hits and damaging the enemy economy.

Standing Armies

In a devastating move, the Protoss player easily sent an undisturbed Phase Prism over to the Terran’s island expansion, knocking it out without even needing to load it up with troops first – just by acting as a power generator and warping in four Zealots from four Warpgates. The Terran player was the clear master of harassment, though, using the superfast Hellions to sneak past defensive lines, dropping units all over the enemy mineral lines and hidden cliffs, using stimmed reapers for hit and run attacks, and finishing with some extraordinary terrible, terrible damage…

Hellion Drop

The two players were able to set up impressive economies, and the battle remained undecided very late into the match. The Protoss player made impressive use of the new Psi-Storm, making short work of the Terran player’s tier 1 army, and did a great job constantly being on the attack.

Holy Psi-Storm, Batman!

Unfortunately, his late game unit use showed that he’s not an expert Protoss player, choosing to use Colossi and Stalkers against the armored Thors and against Marauders, which have a bonus against armored units. As well, and as Dustin comments, he fails to use the High Templar’s new Phase Shift ability, which would have taken out individual Thors out of battles, leaving the reduced Terran army crippled. A smart use of Immortals, which are resistant to the highly damaging attacks of the Thors, coupled with Phase Shift, might have made all the difference in this one.

Thor vs Colossus

However, what really sealed the deal was David Kim’s expert use of a single Ghost riding in a single Medivac Dropship. This successful team managed to drop 5 Nukes in succession, utterly devastating the Protoss Player’s economy, Warpgate farm, expansions, and will to fight. No screengrabs for these, since it will not do the effect justice! This paved the way for the Terran forces to walk all over the leftovers, prompting a “gg” from Yeon-Ho Lee.

Indeed, Nukes are no longer the “coup de grace” weapon of StarCraft 1, but an amazing tactical weapon to be used in normal games, with the potential to turn the tide of battle if used correctly.

A very interesting and intense game, once again dominated by David Kim. When will he be dethroned? Perhaps in the upcoming beta…

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