Description

Since I did a PvZ all in for the Welcome to 4.0 BotW I'll start with PvZ now to give you a macro build to use as well. This is probably one of the most solid openers I've seen for PvZ so far that has the opportunity to kill before the zerg gets to the brood lord infestor omega death ball. I've seen Stats go for this style in almost all of his PvZs on his stream in the last week or so and it seems pretty legit so let's get to it.

VOD

https://www.twitch.tv/videos/200377898?t=02h03m40s

Replay - Ascension to Aiur LE (155)

Build Order

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  12  0:00  Probe (Chrono Boost)  
  13  0:13  Probe (Chrono Boost)  
  14  0:19  Pylon  
  14  0:22  Probe  
  15  0:37  Probe  
  15  0:40  Gateway  
  16  0:48  Assimilator  
  16  0:49  Probe  
  17  1:01  Probe (Chrono Boost)  
  19  1:13  Probe (Chrono Boost)  
  19  1:21  Nexus  
  19  1:24  Probe  
  20  1:33  Cybernetics Core  
  20  1:36  Probe  
  21  1:45  Assimilator  
  21  1:48  Probe  
  21  1:52  Pylon  
  23  2:10  Adept (Chrono Boost)  
  23  2:11  Warp Gate  
  27  2:36  Stargate  
  29  2:42  Stalker  
  35  3:10  Gateway x2  
  37  3:19  Oracle (Chrono Boost)  
  41  3:24  Pylon  
  43  3:36  Assimilator x2  
  44  3:45  Robotics Facility  
  47  3:57  Phoenix (Chrono Boost)  
  47  4:00  Pylon  
  52  4:20  Sentry  
  55  4:26  Pylon  
  56  4:35  Nexus  
  56  4:39  Warp Prism (Chrono Boost)  
  60  4:52  Sentry x2  
  64  4:54  Adept  
  68  5:02  Twilight Council  
  68  5:03  Forge  
  71  5:16  Observer (Chrono Boost)  
  71  5:23  Gateway x2  
  71  5:32  Blink (Chrono Boost)  
  71  5:35  Protoss Ground Weapons Level 1 (Chrono Boost)  
  73  5:37  Gateway x2  
  74  5:44  Immortal  
  85  6:20  Robotics Bay  
  87  6:28  Stalker x3  
  87  6:32  Immortal  
  101  6:54  Assimilator x2  
  103  7:02  Stalker x3  
  103  7:03  Gateway x2  
  103  7:07  Forge  
  103  7:08  Extended Thermal Lance  
  109  7:14  Protoss Ground Weapons Level 2 (Chrono Boost)  
  115  7:23  Charge (Chrono Boost)  
  115  7:25  Templar Archives  
  115  7:32  Zealot x5, Colossus  
  125  7:49  Protoss Ground Armor Level 1 (Chrono Boost)  
  125  7:57  Zealot x3  
  131  8:03  High Templar x2  
  135  8:16  Archon, Gateway  
  135  8:17  Zealot, High Templar x2  
  141  8:22  Archon  
  141  8:25  Nexus, Colossus  
  147  8:40  High Templar x2  
  147  8:41  Zealot  
  155  8:44  Archon  
  161  9:01  High Templar x2  
  169  9:05  Archon  
  169  9:16  Shield Battery x3  
  169  9:21  Photon Cannon x2  
  169  9:22  Colossus (Chrono Boost)  
  175  9:27  High Templar x2  
  175  9:31  Archon  
  199  9:56  Archon  

Analysis


Build Explanation


For this build I've done some very very slight alterations to make it simpler for you guys to learn. Stats did a Nexus first variant of this build and also a proxy stargate variant, however it works perfectly fine by just doing the same 19 Nexus opener into Stargate that is used for Harstem's builld, so I merged the few games together to get this build. I've seen Stats basically do the same thing on his stream as well.

With this build I'd suggest going for adept first to scout instead of stalker to deny the scout. Although getting that first overlord always feels juicy, losing to a roach all in is NOT juicy. So after going for the normal oracle 3 gate opener you take your 3rd base and then you set up your tech for the mid game. A phoenix can also be made instead of a 2nd oracle to kill any overlords around you, which also helps deny the chance of baneling drops occuring. Your tech will then be a twilight and forge to get blink and +1 Attack, followed shortly by some gateways and a robo bay. While this is happening you can get a warp prism to do some counter harass while you get your tech up and some immortals to beef up your army. From then you get 3 colossus with range, some extra gates, and an extra forge once +1 Attack is done to get the double upgrades going.

The part that makes this style so strong is Stats' special little flair that he adds to it once this first stage is completed. Before that though, I'm going to clear up some stuff about the oracle opening itself and how to use it since there was some confusion last time.


How to use the opening oracle


Many people said that they wouldn't want to use the Harstem build from last week because they didn't know how to open oracle and that they couldn't control it early on, so I'm going to say this:

You do not need to be hyper active with your first oracle and doing game ending damage with it.

The main purpose of this oracle opening is the following:

  1. Scouting

This oracle gives you a lot of scouting information that can help you react well to your opponent is doing. You can fly it around the base and get a scout on his tech while trying to maybe get a drone or two if you want, and it can also use revelation on their army so you always know where they will be. So if you're scared of them doing some early pressure to cancel your 3rd base or end the game past a 2 base all in, then this oracle is your saving grace since it will see those units on the map. Then what you get to do is bring it home in order to...

  1. Secure the 3rd base

The second primary function of this oracle is to secure yourself a 3rd base. With the MSCore and overcharge being gone it can be a little tough to get a 3rd base secured sometimes if they make a lot of lings or roaches early on. The oracle allows you to clear out anything that could be blocking the 3rd base and allow you to safely get some shield batteries up.

So don't go into this build expecting to have to constantly darting in and out with your oracle to get drone kills everywhere in order for your build to work at all. That's not the case, and while it may happen every once and a while where someone is unprepared and you get that opportunity, it's only an added bonus. The main thing is the map control you get from scouting, and the security on the 3rd.


The chargelot/archon switch


Now comes the fun part. What Stats has been doing in a majority of his PvZs to pretty good success is to go for a chargelot/archon switch after he gets up 3 colossi and a decent stalker base. What this does is abuse the fact that zerg now needs to play around your unit composition much more than they had to pre-patch. Originally, if you were going for a ground based army pre-4.0, then they could just go hydra/ling/bane in every situation and basically be fine. However, now that colossi (specifically +2 colossi) do absolutely nuts damage to light units, simply going for big hydra/ling/bane attacks won't cut it anymore (provided you forcefield in any capacity whatsoever). The colossi force zerg to respond with an army composition change just like it used to when it was strong in WoL and HotS, which usually is either corruptors or vipers. Corruptors being the more popular choice since it still allows the zerg to do mid game timing pushes without fully breaking their flow.

So Stats, the genius he is, switches into chargelot/archon right as this corruptor switch is normally happening (around the 8-10 minute mark) and baits the zerg into a terrible fight. The colossi will clean up basically all the zerglings/banelings immediately in the fight (+2 colossi nearly 1 shot zerglings), which leaves mostly just hydras and corruptors left. The colossi will die to the corruptors, but it doesn't matter because they're only useful vs a grand total of 3 of your own units. The chargelot/archon can then surge forward and collapse on the squishy hydras that were left over in the fight, and now the zerg has a useless 20 supply of corruptors floating aimlessly in the air above you.

If they go vipers then you can just keep a few HTs with your army for feedback, or go full into storm as well.

If they go infestors then you can usually just break them before they get critical mass.

What this switch also does is just give you a very robust and well rounded army. You can deal with multiple different things and it propels you well into the late game if need be. You can easily switch into constant chargelot harass while banking up storms, and you aren't stuck into one unit composition that will eventually get out scaled. The original stargate can also help you easily transition into carriers or tempests if they get brood lords out.

Overall this is a very solid opening to set you up for a very strong ~10 minute attack with 3 colossi, blink, chargelots, archons and +2 Attack +1 Armor all done and a solid potential to scale into late game as well. If you macro well and the game is fairly quiet, then you should be able to max out at 10 minutes.

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