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The Compleate Noob's Guid to Early Game Terran

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  • The Compleate Noob's Guid to Early Game Terran

    For a beginner it may seem very confusing as to when and what to build in Starcraft II, especially when there are dozens of builds to choose from for each race and for each match-up. Despite the diversity of viable builds, they all grow from the early game. I'm talking about the first 3 minutes of any game.

    Let's start off with the first thing you see at the start of every game, your command center and 6 SCVs. The very first things you have to do are to send your SCVs to work and start your 1st SCV from your command center. Ideally you want to split your SCVs so that they start mining ASAP. That means you send 3 SCVs to one side of your mineral row and the other 3 to the other side. In the most ideal conditions (depending on the map) mineral patches are positioned in a triangular shape in which you can send your sets of 3 SCVs to the most efficient start possible. See "worker Split" image in attached thumbnails (mouse over picture to see image name)

    While your first SCV is in queue, hotkey your command center (I put mine on 6). In order to hotkey your command center select it and press ctrl and any number you wish to put it on, hotkeyed units or structures are called control groups. You can also add units or buildings to a control group by pressing shift + control group number. You can also set camera bookmarks by pressing ctrl + f4, f5, or f6. This is really helpful in giving SCVs the command to return to work as soon as they're finished building a structure, or when you need to look at a certain part of the map for whatever reason.

    After your first 2 SCVs pop out you need to pay attention to what structures you need to build. Once your supply is on 9/11 and you have 2 SCVs in queue remind your self that right when the next SCV pops out you need to build a supply depot (see image named "when to build supply depot" in attached thumbnails). So your 1st supply depot should be building almost immediately after your supply reaches 10/11. After you start building your 1st supply depot queue up 2 more SCVs which will put your supply at 12/19.

    Shortly after your supply depot is finished you will have enough minerals to build your barracks, send out a scouting SCV right after your barracks goes down. After your barracks starts building queue up one more SCV and build your first refinery as soon as you have the minerals for it (refinery at 13). After your refinery goes down, you will have enough time and minerals to buy 2 more SCVs which will put you at 15/19 supply.

    As soon as your barracks finishes start your orbital and make your first marine out of the barracks. As your orbital is morphing you have the option of taking your 2nd refinery or not (building a 2nd refinery depends on the match-up or build you're going for). Once your orbital is done you're ready to decide your tech path, which depends on the match-up or the situation which you may have scouted with your SCV. From here on out constantly build workers and don't forget to hotkey your barracks and any other production structure or units you may have.

    Note: the most common match-ups in which to take a 2nd refinery as your orbital is morphing are TvT and TvZ. It is not really necessary to get a 2nd refinery that early in TvP unless you're going for banshees or a mech build. I personally get my 2nd refinery in TvP around 38 supply

    Outline of early game build:
    worker split
    4 SCVs Complete
    10/11 Supply Depot
    2 SCVs on queue
    12/19 Barracks
    SCV
    13/19 Refinery
    2 SCVs
    15/19 Orbital
    2nd refinery (depending on match-up or build order choice)
    Your next 3 supply depots after this point should be built at 18, 23, and 33 supply.

    Match up-specific variations:

    Terran vs Protoss
    In TvP I usually go for a 3 rax expand which means I build a 2nd barracks shortly after my orbital starts and a 3rd shortly after my orbital is finished.

    Terran vs Zerg
    As you may or may not know, in TvZ you need to create a wall-off at your ramp or base entrance. In order to start your 1st supply depot at the most efficient timing while creating a wall at your entrance, you'll have to make a subtle change: once your supply reaches 9/11 and you have 2 SCVs in queue wait until you have about 60 minerals. As soon as you have 60 minerals send an SCV to your ramp to build your 1st depot. The timing should be more or less perfect to start your depot at the ramp or entrance as soon as you have enough minerals.

    Terran vs Terran
    It's not very common to deviate from this early game build in TvT, but one variation that I personally use from time to time is the "gas first build" which calls for a refinery to be built at 11/11 supply and the barracks at 13/19 supply. This allows you to build a factory immediately after your barracks are finished which is ideal for mech builds.

    There are, of course, other early game builds as terran but this is the most common and possibly the most solid foundation for almost all build orders.
    Attached Files
    *Insert wise words or witty remark here*

  • #2
    I'll practice this tonight.
    Men are very often so busy being ORDINARY that they don't recognize that every one of them is slightly, somewhere, EXTRAORDINARY.

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    • #3
      Good stuff! I like how I know what numbers and times I should be looking after now, thanks!

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