With Starcraft 2 coming out tomorrow and lots of new players jumping online I thought I’d give this little rundown on cheese. No not the delicious fermented dairy product but rather the incredibly annoying and frustrating strategies you will encounter at one point or another.
Knowing your cheese
Cheese is basically a strategy that involves doing a very specific game plan in the hope of pulling a victory by a mean the other player cannot defend against. For example, I could rush to air incredibly quickly with the hope you won’t have any appropriate defenses. Or I could do a cannon rush into your base, building cannons right at the periphery of your base and then building new ones inching closer and closer into your base. If you haven’t seen and prevented my first cannon you will probably be defeated. Cheese can be incredibly frustrating to play against because it often leaves the feeling you didn’t stand a chance, wich is true when a cheese is well executed.
Despite offering quick and easy ways to victory cheese is actually a very high risk tactic that if failed, will usually guarantee a defeat for the one doing it. In order to be able to pull off the crazy speed or weird builds, cheese will leave you with a broken economy and behind in terms of technology. If you can resist a cheese without taking too much damage you will be able to to just roll over your opponent in most cases.
Cheese will be encountered at all levels of play but it’s very much more common at the lower levels of play. There’s a lot of bad players who rely on cheese as their one and only game plan to win and are unable to come up with anything else. They figure that since they win it’s the best way to play but they fail to realize that stable play will give them more wins in the long run rather than their one trick pony. High level cheese is often not something that is decided at the beginning of the game but rather an opportunity seen by a more experience player. For example, if your opponent scout early that you are going for economy build is answer might be to do a zergling cheese wich is faster to execute than your build. This kind of cheese is way harder to defend from and its usually a good sign that you need to rethink your strategy.
Defending against cheese
There’s one and only one way to truly defend agaisnt cheese and that is scouting. If you scout your opponent early in the game and keep doing so, you will have an excellent idea of what he’s up to and what to expect. If your first scout sees a spawning pool and close to no drones for example you can be pretty sure a zergling rush is on the way. Armed with that knowledge you know what to expect and what to do.
The other way to defend is to lose at least once to that particular cheese. Once you’ve been fooled you know what signs to look for.
It’s simple as that. There’s no magic trick or special knowledge. Safe and stable play will beat out cheese almost every time. Every time I’ve been defeated by cheese it was because I forgot to scout or went for some funky build. I had me to blame first and foremost.
With that I’m off to countdown the hours before I get my hand on the full game!