While StarCraft had interested me for years, I avoided picking it up until the 3rd expansion of StarCraft II, Legacy of the Void. The game looked awesome, but I was a little intimidated by real-time strategy and all those super fast-acting pro-gamers. When I did finally give it a try, I was surprised to find that it wasn’t nearly as rough as I had imagined all those years. In fact, I had such a blast playing it that I didn’t realize my laptop was burning a hole in my leg. Gaming injuries aside, here are some tips to get real-time strategy noobs started with less frustration.

Take Advantage of Training
StarCraft II is a flexible game. There are several different game modes, which are Campaign (playing through the story solo), Cooperative (playing online with a partner against the AI), Multiplayer (player vs. player) or Archon Mode (like multiplayer but 2 vs. 2.) I prefer starting with Campaign mode, but Multiplayer can work as well. These modes are great introductions because they have training sessions. Multiplayer starts with explanations of each battle unit and building, as well as its relevant upgrades. The beginning multiplayer matches are against the computer and are extremely easy. After a few of these they start getting harder, until you are ready to either repeat training or move on to actual matches. Campaign mode eases you into the different functions and strategy concepts more slowly, with the option of repeating missions on harder and harder difficulties.

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