How To Pick Your Race In StarCraft II

Should you play as Terran, Protoss or Zerg in StarCraft II's multiplayer? Good thing there are experts who can break down the options...

StarCraft II player Duban has a great guide over at the official StarCraft II forums that begins with some welcome advice about which army to command.

First, his warning: "you shouldn't pick Terran because they are human, Protoss because they are cool and high tech, or zerg because of their monstrous appetite. Each race has a distinct play-style and/or play-styles unique to their race."

Some excerpts:


Terran is an extremely defensive race. The race centres around creating an extremely heavily fortified position in the early game, usually by creating a front door wall with supply depots, barracks and/or factories. The Terrans than build up a large force unopposed and move out when the time is right. Because Terran strategy is very straightforward and in the process of climbing the tech tree they unlock almost everything Terran is generally considered the "Easy" race.


Zerg gets a large number of extremely mobile units. Speed upgraded Zerglings are lightning fast, mutalisks are fast and flexible, Roaches and infesters can travel while burrowed. The Terran fight in a chokepoint, like near their base, and the Zerg fight in the open ground of the centre of the map. The zerg win by out-producing, or out-macroing, their opponent... The zerg is often considered the "hard" race, BUT if you're willing to work with their play-style it can also give great results and be very rewarding at the same time.


The Protoss can put up a strong defence compared to the zerg, but not nearly as tough as the Terrans. The Protoss forces are more mobile than the Terrans but can expect to be outmaneuvered by the Zerg. The Protoss are strong against the zerg in a tight chokepoint, but should fight the Terrans on open ground. They can expand to a new base early, or live off of 1 base for some time...The Protoss doesn't really have a definite weakness, but it doesn't specialize either. Its better than zerg at things zerg is bad at and better than Terran at things Terran is good at.

For more on which race to pick, read D's Guide P1: Picking a Race. Then try D's Guide P2: Basic Rules to live by, D's Guide P3: Dictionary of SC2 terms and D's Guide P4: Build Orders.

Thank you, Duban. StarCraft II novices like me salute you!

Note to readers: Duban's page indicates that he plays as Zerg. And is undefeated in league play.


    new players: start with protoss.

    the warp gate mechanic, and the easy casting abilities of the sentry make them the easiest race to get used to. chrono boost will help you catch up when you forget to build probes (terran has mules, which are better, but their army is more squishy in general. protoss units are stronger and more forgiving).

    i say protoss is the most easiest race to use

    I appreciate the publicity, thank you. Also I added D's Guide P5: What you might not know.

    This is very misleading. Terran is mistaken as the 'easy' race because it's the default/human race with the standard building construction > units. But Diamond is not at all like this.

    Terran right now are probably the hardest to WIN good games in because they lack mobility and their units are very specialised. Each unit can fulfill only a single role. The wrong army composition is pretty much game over. Compare with Protoss where 90% their army comes from Gateways + forgiving armour and shields. Or Zerg where all units come from the same larval pool.

    It's pretty much accepted that Protoss are the recommended choice for a player who wants to become competitive and is wrapping his head around basic mechanics.

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