StarCraft® II

MmG_Terran - The Marine Power

(Sticky)

Hello and welcome to "Micromanagement Guide" a thread focusing in on hopefully simple and straightforward strategies to improve your gameplay.

This first thread will be about the terrans and their backbone units marines. There are always different ways of executing things depending on situation. But hopefully it can provide some help in deciding how to use your units.

Marines got a huge damage per second countering their price and a great movement speed with stim. The only thing that really outshines them are zerglings, but marines are ranged and that is huge, specially in larger numbers. Now this guide will not tell you if you should retreat or attack more how you should try to micro in a fight.

The early game is more how you counter certian units vs other units, later on it's more about position (placing "tankier" units at the front) since both players will have several units.

--- early ---

Now we start with something simple, in the early game you will problary have marines and marauders, now you will need stim to get superior movement speed (but don't overuse stim) since marines will deplete Hp pretty quick.

A lot of players have screamed of imbaness over terrans "A-move". It's not really what we will do, but it's sort of true. You Attack-move the ground in front of your units and imediatly move back with your army and then Attack-move again. This is called kiting. Versus most units in the early game you will use defencive kiting. The only few examples are:

Stalkers: if you have succesefully kited all the zealots the protoss players loses a lot of their dps and "tank-power" and protoss player now tries to run you should always try to pick of those stalkers in order to actually do damage to a protoss player. What you do instead of attackingmoving and then retreating you do the opposite you attackmove and then move forward and then attackmoving again. This will hopefully land a few extra concussive shells and kill of more stalkers then it would otherwise do because of stalkers great mobility.

Zerglings: these cheap and huge dps speeddemons can easily kill a stimmed marine group if you just try to kite them. What you do is that you try to move as close toghether as you can and if you got time clump yourself at a wall which will increase your marine survivability tremendous. So instead of trying to kite zerglings decrease the directions in which they can attack.

Banelings: Now there is no quick guide to dealing with banelings, here it's more about speed and fast thinking. But what you basicly want to do is spread out your units but only the front units since if you spread out every unit zerglings will quickly surround them and kill. If you got armored units like marauders you should try to position them in the front.
*You create a "mini-wall" with units that will hopefully hold the baneling wall while you keep the other group of your army toghether and follow the standard vs ordinary zerglings.

--- mid ---
Now you might have gotten siegetanks or medivacs (remember this only covers the most basic terran armies consisting of marines) and there are different ways of approaching the way you play now. Either you focus on spreading your army into 2 groups, one "normal" army and the other army as "specialised" army. (Now I don't mean spellcasters this time)

The normal group could be consisting of marines / medivacs and the other group could be marauders or non-sieged tanks. What you want to do here is that your marines mainly just attacks and the marauders fire at that huge and armored colossus that would deal a tremendous amount of damage if not taken care of.
*Basicly A-move and all units that deal +damage to armored should be focus fireing armored targets.

A pretty common strategy is the so called "MMM-ball" now it's pretty similar to the early game kiting. You kite your enemy with your only ranged army and marauders and marines does this very well. But one common problem I see is that they keep their medivacs in the same unit group, doesn't seem bad does it? Well the problem is that medivacs could be seen as a unit with "0" cooldown meaning they don't benefit from moving and then "attacking", they will lose healing time. So splitting your marine+marauder army from your medivacs will make the medivacs constantly healing while your kite with the marine and marauders.
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If you got siege tanks you should start at the end of your siege tanks range and then kite your way back to the siege tanks prefferably behind the siegetanks. But don't leave them to undefended just enough to force them to attack.
The reason is if you got more then one seige tank, and the others are spread out more. This way you force the opponent to attack because he think he will kill a free tank but what you have done is to lure him into your ambush remember to continue to kite back to your other siege tanks to lure him even more, if he decides to retreat then start to kite forward)
*If you face a terran player you need air units to gain increased vision but don't let the air units die the player with not vision at all will lose.

--- late ---
Since this is focused mainly around marines there is not a lot of ways to widely use your army (still not counting spellcasters like ravens or specialiced units like banshees, you still want to use this techinques and use the spells of your other units)

Now vs zerg it's not easy to kite anymore with slow units like thors and stationary units like siegetanks. Your main micro is now pretty similar even if it is vs zerg and protoss. But vs terran can be quite complicated and would problary need a guide of its own. It's metagame is also constantly changing from siegetanks containment to medivac drops to hellions+banshee.

Remember what has been told, even though you might have tier 3 units marines are and wil always be your main force to deal dps. Therefore you need to keep them alive to the end of the clash at all cost, but they don't actually need to survive the battle since they are so cheap and thors are much harder to produce.

The way you keep the marines alive are basicly the same way you did at the early game, you kite and you "hide at walls" but this time the walls are your stronger units like thors and marauders. Alternatly use your medivacs, expose your marines stimming them and dealing a bit of damage and then as fast as you can lift up your marine and drop them somewhere "safe" (*laughs*) The downside is that you might lose more thors but keep more marines alive and be able to counter-push really fast.

An example is a zerg player attacking while you move out (I woulnd't bet a zerg player going all in except if you are threatening his main hive cluster :P) you group all your stronger units into one group and all your marines to another group (alternatly a third group with spellcasters if you want). When you move out you controll all your unit groups in one group but you don't need to bind them to a key just keep them close together so zerglings can't surround units efficiently. He will problary have banelings and/or infestors your main goal is to avoid these nasty marinekab00mers by retreating and kiting while your other army fires or hopefully gets targetet by the banelings. Remember to not spread out your marines to much or the zerglings may surround them or you can get flanked from behind by banelings!
*Remember how to deal with zerglings at the early game? You should always keep close to the wall, keep your marines at the wall and then keep the armored units in front of the wall.

Also always keep in mind that thors/siege tanks are more important to keep alive but they should also tank, a successful fight is when your all your thors got red hp and you still got marines left. You might get promted to continue and attack here since you basicly got the same army as when you started except they are all damaged. Good protoss and zerg players will quickly warp in or morph in a new army to snipe those damaged thors. In this situation you always prioritize your thors before the marines, you can sacrifise a whole horde of marines to keep a thor alive. (unless you will lose the thors and marines, then it's better to just stim and retreat) The only reason you keep your marines alive as priority 1 before the fight is because they deal an insane ammount of dps.
Edited by Twilice on 29/07/2011 19:47 BST
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I like to harass with stimmed marines and medivacs .i once took out 2 command centers with 4 medivacs full of marines.all of my marines died but they were able to do allot of economy damage.
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It's far easier to micro-kite Marines by using stutter-step (move, stop, move, stop) instead of a-move, stop, a-move, stop. That way you only need 1 keyboard button instead of two, and prevent misclicks that lock your cursor (pressing A and then S won't work and your marines die)
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Ah, I never actually thought about that. I guess I played to much dota so I just A-click everything. But I will try it out and eventually add it.

Also my grammar is not the best, so if someone wants they could help me with some of the most mayor errors.
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This is beyond the shadow of a doubt one of the best threads I've ever seen.

Awesome. + 1 looking forward to your next threads. Request for Sticky.
Edited by Archael on 20/02/2011 00:15 GMT
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Thanks, I have started to think about the next installment. Anything in particular you want?
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Zergling/Roach/Hydra or/and Muta micro.

Generally the zerg army since it can be hard to control when it gets to higher tier or with fast micro-dependant units like mutas, infestors or... Ultras with support?

Any of it would be useful for me and lots of other people.

Otherwise, Sentry-usage and zealot/stalker micro would be useful for most people as well.
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Added medivac pickup at late. I think I will try to pickup zerg but instead of focusing one unit I will try to focus the faster units / more micro intense units. (I hope that will suit you Archael)

*Thanks for sticky, it will really motivate me in continuing this.
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Why is it that when people post good things, they get reported? Seriously...


OT: Good job with this thread!
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Where's the "Vote Unsticky" option?
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Ah, sorry I haven't had time to finish this/other chapters. And I probably won't find time to do it.
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TL:DR
Marines are worth nothing, they are only keept alive because their insane ammount of dps. So you focus everything on keeping their dps alive. After a big-fight they are worth nothing because they are easy to build again while thors can be a real pain in the ass to rebuild.
*Always micro the marines to keep them alive, but if you can save units of higher tier by sacrificing marines then do it.


"You may find it strange that the shepherd, who had a hundred sheep, would spend so much time trying to find one lost lamb. In fact, it was because the shepherd was the kind of man who would search for one lost lamb that he had a hundred sheep."

My point is, nothing is worth nothing. Those marines do not just cost 50 minerals, you'll also realise after you "sacrificed" your marines to keep your vital units alive that you don't have any AA except thors that, for MOST circumstances are better of for killing ground units.
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urf doublepost nonsense.
Edited by Rasofe on 20/04/2011 22:59 BST
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i hate a lot marinessssssssss and marauderssssss and medivacs - are almost invincible
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It is a good tactic, why not try scanning the enemy base for gaps in their ariel defences near their primary base (around were the workers are- it is ideal!), then deploy your force right at their worker lines, thus working from the inside out while doing a lot of damage in the bargain. sounds good huh?
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17/05/2011 19:50Posted by Kyrion
It is a good tactic, why not try scanning the enemy base for gaps in their ariel defences near their primary base (around were the workers are- it is ideal!), then deploy your force right at their worker lines, thus working from the inside out while doing a lot of damage in the bargain. sounds good huh?


:O That has never been thought of by anybody in the entire history of the game
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MMM FTW :)
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Thx for teh TL;DR note.
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04/03/2011 17:09Posted by vGiJamven
Where's the "Vote Unsticky" option?


Wheres the "stop whining and L2p"button?
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