Proxy Metagame

There is actually an interesting metagame for proxy now for TvP and TvT.

Proxy is arguably a form of cheese, which relies on the surprise element to succeed. The main reason it works is that the “standard” play does not match well against proxy unless it is scouted. I prefer to categorise proxy into two types. The first is when the building(s) is placed in proxy location early on in the game, and this requires the defending player to react immediately (e.g., proxy Reaper). The other is when the building(s) is placed in proxy location later in the game, and it is mainly to hide a tech that gains an edge over a normal placement due to it not being scouted and also its capability to have an attack at an earlier timing (e.g., proxy Banshee). The recent SSL round was a cheese fiesta, and it got me wondering if there is a metagame within the early proxy itself.

Proxy two or three Barracks Reapers is the most common proxy build (see vod above), and opponent can easily figure it out by sending a worker to scout opponent’s base. The worker will find no Barracks, and a Refinery will be taken. Alternatively, on some proxy favor maps, players can also send a worker to scout at the common proxy locations. Proxy two Barracks Marauders has become a popular proxy choice recently after ByuN had used it against TY successfully (see vod below). The funny thing is TY tried to do the same against ByuN in the next game, but it got scouted (look at ByuN’s expression).

The main point is, proxy Marauder can work well because of proxy Reaper. When you know opponent proxy Barracks, you expect Reapers. The response to Reapers in general is to match them with your own Reapers by continuing making another Reaper instead of putting down a Reactor, then pull Scvs to defend while you wait for your Factory units to push the Reapers away (read more about it here). Marauders do well against Reapers, and the reaction against proxy Reaper simply plays into the hand of proxy Marauders. A good response to proxy Marauder is to build a Bunker on top of the ramp, and this is something you don’t do against proxy Reapers. Below vod is an interesting proxy Reaper versus proxy Marauder game.

Recently, proxy Immortal has become popular in TvP. To the best of knowledge, sOs is the first player who does a double Robotic Facility proxy into Immortal cheese, and he did that against Bunny in a recent SSL game (see vod below). From a Terran player’s perspective, the build looks exactly like a proxy Stargate when the Scv goes into Protoss’ base. Both Refineries are taken, and only one Pylon is in base.

The response to a proxy Oracle is different from the one you have against proxy Immortals. If you go for a tech oriented build like a 15/16 Reaper expand into 1-1-1, you need to make a Cyclone and position that at the mineral line with the four Marines. Then, you put down an Engineering Bay for Missile Turret. If you go for a bio oriented build, you build an Engineering Bay earlier for Missile Turret. However, you want to build Bunkers against Immortal, and have workers to repair them. Similar to the TvT scenario above, proxy Immortal earns its place in the metagame because proxy Stargate is common.

In the vod below, Maru made an Engineering Bay for Missile Turret after he saw what is in Classic’s base. He even sent a worker to scout for the proxy, but he could not find the Robotic Facilities. The main reason Bunny succeeded in defending is that he found the proxy buildings.

This is a short post. I am pretty busy, and I am working on the next Elementary Series post.

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