Starcraft 2: Zerg-Zerg 2v2 Cooperative Team Strategies

written by TeamLiquid

Generally speaking when opponents see a ZZ team they will be expecting something ridiculously cheesy like a double 6 pool rush, which gives you the potential to play a more econ friendly build (14 Gas 14 Pool) and force the game into the later stages with a tech advantage. If one of you 10 pools/overpools and the other 14 pools your lings will be out early enough that if you do scout early aggression you can fend it off rather easily, in the event you get double double gated by a PP team or reaper rushed. Assuming you do play a conservative 14 pool, and your opponents cheese, the longer the game goes the better off you’ll be.

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Fast expanding is something done on a situational basis. If you scout a protoss with two gates and a terran with two rax reactors, play it safe and get roaches first. If you scout a forge first toss with a terran that builds a fast factory, by all means expand.

Late game, diversity in unit composition is key. Mass roach/hydra is powerful against the typical midgame P or T armies, but blindly massing hydras will get you killed by Colossi or siege tanks. I repeat: do not blindly mass roach/hydra and expect to win. Typically, if one player mixes in some mutas (for harass), and infestors (the most powerful zerg unit in the game to some), it will force the opponent to make units specifically for countering these threats. For example:

If your partner makes a small control group of mutas and starts harassing probes, a protoss opponent will start mixing in more stalkers in an effort to hard counter the muta threat. The fewer Colossi and Zealots, the more likely your Hydra force will be able to walk straight into his base. Likewise if a terran has to pump more marines to counter mutas, he will have fewer mauraders for roasting roaches.

Most people love to push together (especially when it’s a Terran/Protoss combo), but Zerg has the flexibilty to engage in multiple places, or on multiple flanks. Assuming one of you went Mutaling, you have ability to use your mutas to hit into the enemy mains when they push out with their armies, and leave your lings and your teammates roach/hydra at home to defend. Forcing the enemy to decide between saving his workers or going through with the attack puts you at the advantage. Just don’t skimp on the spine crawlers.


Surviving the early game:

Getting Rushed: Something that all Zergs are familiar with in team games is the early rush. We’re prime targets for early unified aggression from opponents in any team game, so the ZZ team should be no stranger to this concept. Certain steps should be taken to prepare for the rush that is inevitably coming. Early scouting is obviously the most important part. Make sure to take note of things like gas timing and the number of unit producing structures. Familiarity with the potential Protoss and Terran Builds will help you make sense of the scouting information you receive. Getting caught off guard by early pressure with not enough units to defend will lose you the game twice as fast to a unified opposing army.

The one thing that helps more than anything is the large rush distance on 2v2 maps. The more time you have once you’ve scouted the rush to create units and prepare a defense, the better. Have scouting units immediately outside where the opponent will be pushing from so you know as soon as possible that it’s coming.

Now we get to the most important part of defending rushes:

Unit Composition: One of the most difficult parts of surviving early rushes is the unique ways that opponents can use different units together in ways that most Zergs aren’t familiar with. For example: Whereas mass marine is easily defendable with speedling baneling, a handful of reinforcing zealots will make your zerglings wish they were never spawned. Likewise, while Roaches are great for taking out said Zealots, BOOM here come the Marauders.

An effective solution is to split the tech paths down the middle between teammates. If against a PT team, one teammate will go entirely roaches with a slow tech to hydras, while the other goes speedling baneling with a slightly faster tech to Mutas (ling/bling can be easier on the gas). Having a diverse army will allow you to deal with a multitude of possible early pushes.

But just having the units sometimes isn’t enough, which leads us perfectly into:

Micromanagement: The worst possible scenario is as follows: you and your ally are well prepared. You have 6 banelings and about a dozen speedlings with another 12 on the way, and your ally has mustered up 7 or 8 roaches in time for the first big battle with 6 more on the way. Your opponents have massed zealots and marines, and are barreling down on your front door. Both sides a-move together and… all 6 banelings suicide into the zealots, inflicting minimal damage, leaving a handful of lings and roaches to fight a still formidable zealot force, and a completely unharmed marine ball. GG.

The most important part of the first battle is using your super awesome army to it’s full potential. You created those banelings to kill marines, don’t waste them on zealots! Roaches are amazing against zealots, so don’t waste them on marines. This will take a lot of your focus away from macro in the early game, but getting your units in position to inflict maximum damage on the proper enemy unit will make early game battles a cake walk.

The best possible scenario to the above situation would be as follows: all six banelings explode perfectly, instantly cutting that fearsome 20 marine ball down to only 4 or 5, which are soon engulfed by speedlings. In the meantime, your ally’s roaches are microing perfectly against the enemy zealots, whose short stubby little psi blades are no match for the ferocious acid spit of the roach. In no time your reinforcements have spawned, and a once scary situation has now turned into a solid advantage going in to the midgame.

Spine Crawlers: Spine crawlers offer great return on investment in pressure situations. Not only do they inflict a great amount of damage, they also help tank damage to help your units live longer in battles. They are particularly useful against zergs that are going for speedling baneling, and Protosses that are making a lot of stalkers. They are less useful against Terrans with lots of marauders, or zergs that are making roaches and hydras.

Queens: In the event that the attack occurs near a hatchery, be it in your main or if you have a natural up, pay attention to any queens you have in the area. The Queen’s AI has the unfortunate habit of auto-attacking nearby enemies (just like any other fighting unit you have), leaving them to die alone and ruin your ability to spawn larva after the attack is over. If your army is large enough to fight without the help of your queens, keep them far enough away to avoid danger.

Random tips:

Spawn larva: You can spawn larva on your ally’s hatchery with your queen. If your ally loses his queen to harass and yours is sitting on 100 energy, help a brother out.

Creep: With two people actively spreading creep there should be no reason your armies should ever be caught off creep. The occasional “creep” reminder in chat goes a long way.

Scouting: Any good zerg already knows this so it goes without saying: Knowing what your opponent is doing before he does it will help you have the proper counter prepared. You should never be surprised by void rays or banshees. Keep scouting drones alive as long as possible, sacrifice the occasional overlord if need be. If your opponents expand and you don’t know about it, you’re doing it wrong. Put those overlords to use. Between the two of you you should have every expansion/choke/ramp/cliff covered. Keep a spare group of lings around to stop expansions before they get fully up and running.

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Don’t be afraid to be “cheesy”: If you see that an enemy is doing a really silly/cheesy build (either something super aggressive like a 6 pool, or something super passive like a 15 hatch), don’t be afraid to change your build and double mass speedling roflstomp him. It’s not cheese if you’re reacting to scouting information and punishing his bad decisions. Forge first FE tosses are begging to be ling’d. If a terran fails to wall off but still gets a fast factory without enough marines, you owe it to him to force him out of the game.

Constant pressure: A little harass goes a long way. Keeping the pressure on the enemy throughout the whole game makes him waste money on things that will help you in the long run: make protosses build extra cannons, make terrans build turrets and bunkers, make zergs build crawlers and spores. Money invested in static defense is money that can’t be used to hurt you (and trust me, large late game Toss/Terran armies are SCARY).

Backdoor Shenanigans: Turtling terrans/tosses with lots of siege tanks and cannons are almost IMPOSSIBLE to break at the front. If the map has destructible rocks, use them. If not, try some Nydus or drop Shenanigans until you can tech to Brood Lord.

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