archive by month
Skip to content

a few fun games

I wrote up a few fun games between Steamhammer and its rivals. The first of the two games against McRave is especially exciting.

versus Arrakhammer

Arrakhammer is successful, but its ZvZ matchup is not as strong as the others. It has been losing a lot of games to Steamhammer and winning rarely. In Arrakhammer vs Steamhammer, Arrakhammer went with a fast mutalisk opening and Steamhammer chose a zergling opening. Arrakhammer made 3 sunkens to hold the zerglings... and they weren’t enough.

Steamhammer hit a bug this game (fixed in the next version). It intended to take its gas early, but incorrectly thought it couldn’t. If it had played as intended, it would have had fewer zerglings but they would have had speed, and I don’t know how the game would have gone.

versus McRave

McRave has been playing a lot of games against Steamhammer, with increasing success. McRave has been opening with forge-expand—it may sound simple but it is a sophisticated build that is difficult for a bot to master. Steamhammer plays its usual random selection. Many of the games are stomps for one side or the other. Here are the 2 I found the most entertaining.

In a game on Moon Glaive, Steamhammer went 12 hatch into 3 hatch ling, which sometimes breaks the cannons and wins outright. Not this time, though. Both sides struggled with weaknesses. Steamhammer went hydras and then switched to mutas, then switched back to hydras, repeatedly suiciding units all the while. McRave blocked its dragoons in its base with buildings and only got zealots out on the map.

McRave maxed its supply earlier, capping its workers at 60 probes and saving the rest for army. Since only zealots and probes got out of the base, Steamhammer was able to take the map and grow a larger economy, going to 75 drones. Finally Steamhammer got ultralisks and, nearly maxed itself, busted the cannons, letting McRave’s army free. What would win, the bigger army or the bigger economy?

Protoss held the ramp. The ultras could not break in. The battle went on and on and on as both sides burned resources, and the blue ramp on Moon Glaive will probably be red forever. Both bots controlled their units poorly in the usual bot way—more moving than shooting, all butting heads and no finesse. Eventually reavers and storm forced the zerg back and protoss gained map control for the first time.

With its ample economy, Steamhammer was soon maxed again, while protoss had lost many probes in the fight. Protoss had held its ramp, but could not maintain map control for long. A detachment with ultralisks defeated the reavers in the center while most of the zerg army reduced the protoss main, and only mop-up was left.

A game on Andromeda went differently. Steamhammer chose a less economic opening and reacted sluggishly to the cannons. It ended up going mass lings with mutalisks. This time McRave was ahead in both army and economy.

Protoss moved the army to protect a center expansion. Mutalisks had been picking off probes from the undefended mineral only base, and eventually they moved forward far enough to notice that the defending units had departed. Muta-ling broke the cannons and rampaged through the 3 protoss bases around the main. Probes died, and suddenly zerg had a chance. Would the protoss army get back in time to defend?

McRave reacted not by defending, but by countering Steamhammer’s distant corner expansions. Zerg ought to have finished off the protoss tech and production before anything else, but that is not how Steamhammer is coded. Zerg ran to defend, creating a complex situation—and Steamhammer is vulnerable to tactical collapse in complex situations. The zerg units in the picture are not attacking the mined-out center expansion, they are moving past the enemy while taking fire. On the minimap, notice the diagonal line in two colors. It was a debacle.


No Trackbacks


LetaBot on :

Is your bot not going to participate in the CIG?

I don't even see ArrakHammer in there.

Jay Scott on :

Nope. The organizers (in my view) fail at communication.

Joseph Huang on :

If you make your Ultras always attack the closest non flying enemy, the botnwill be less potato overall. Ultras are quite fat, so it's a reasonable choice.

Jay Scott on :

Agreed, or at least closer to that. To me it’s even more noticeable that the hydras were inefficient. Good targeting calls for some analysis of freedom of movement.

Joseph Huang on :

Another option is to attack the closest enemy building. Your attack priority code is using the order location, so that's kind of important.

Jay Scott on :

Here’s a game today where Steamhammer and Arrakhammer chose the same openings. Arrakhammer built only 2 sunkens this time, and won:

Joseph Huang on :

Looks like ling speed is not worth it.

Jay Scott on :

It’s true that ling speed was not much use, with Steamhammer’s lack of skill to abuse it and Arrakhammer’s defensive attitude in the game. The important difference in the games is that Arrakhammer did not waste lings fighting outside sunken range.

Add Comment

E-Mail addresses will not be displayed and will only be used for E-Mail notifications.

To prevent automated Bots from commentspamming, please enter the string you see in the image below in the appropriate input box. Your comment will only be submitted if the strings match. Please ensure that your browser supports and accepts cookies, or your comment cannot be verified correctly.

Form options

Submitted comments will be subject to moderation before being displayed.