Why I picked Protoss

In this blogpost I will explain why I chose Protoss as the race for my Starcraft 2 bot. Protoss has a lot of interesting abilities for a bot to master. A lot of them will be tricky to use properly, but they should also be tricky for the opponent to counter. Let’s look at a list:

Dark Templar
The Dark Templar is fairly easy to use, but can be very annoying to deal with. The Brood War API (BWAPI) allows your bot to ‘see’ where invisible units are. They get to know their position and what type of unit it is. They still need detection to be able to see them.
With the Starcraft 2 API you do not get to know where they are. You can tell that there is a Dark Templar near your units when your units mysteriously start losing large chunks of their health. If you suspect DTs, getting detection at your base and with your army is essential.

Force Fields
I expect that using Force Fields correctly will be very tricky for a bot. When you can use them well, however, there are some interesting things you can do with them. There was the Immortal Sentry all-in during Heart of the Swarm, where you would make a bunch of Immortals and Sentries, drop them in the opponent main and then block the ramp with Force Fields.
Any bot which does not understand Force Fields may find its army locked out of its main, helplessly walking back and forth, while the main is being destroyed.

(Warp Prism) Warp ins
Warping in units near the enemy base can allow a bot to do quick harassments or counter attacks. I would love to try out ways to catch the opponent off guard. The Warp Prism allows you to send in a flood of Zealots or a couple of DTs and do loads of damage. You can even take a peek at the opponents defenses to see if you want to risk it, before commiting the resources to the warp-in.

The huge area of effect damage of the Disruptor can destroy large portions of the enemy army if they are not careful. I expect that Disruptors will prove very strong against most new bots, since they probably lack the skill to dodge Disruptor shots.

Other than these big ones, there are a number of other abilities that could be very fun to experiment with. Just think about Blink, the Adept Shade, Mass Recall and Warp Prism pickup micro.

Protoss just has so many toys to play with, I can’t wait to get started!

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