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Thread: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

  1. #1
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    Default 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    1) I've never been a fan of burrowed movement for Roaches. When the unit was first revealed two years ago, I instantly fell in love with it - it was simple and straightforward, like the Hydralisk and Zergling in Brood War. It was a unit that could be used to brute-force your way through situations, yet also had the opportunity for interesting micro.

    However, I feel that the Roach has lost a fair amount of its appeal since its original incarnation. There's an extra layer of complexity in that they only regenerate when burrowed now, but more importantly, they can be upgraded to move while burrowed. I personally don't really make use of this, and even less so now that the movement bonus has been nerfed. Personally, I think that Zerg can live without the Tunneling Claws upgrade.

    Despite these changes, the Roach still feels like the straightforward 'beat face' unit that I originally envisaged it to be, largely in thanks to its relatively high vitality.

    In a nutshell, do you guys think that the Zerg need the utility of Roaches that move while burrowed? I don't think they really do, and I feel that Blizz could keep the 'purity' of the blunt-instrument Roach, and save the gimmick of burrowed movement for a specialist non-Infestor unit.

    I just can't help but feel that design space in StarCraft has its limits. I mean, there are only so many things you can do with Burrow. You have Lurkers which can only attack while burrowed, and I don't think Burrowed Movement is something which every other Zerg unit should have. Burrowed Movement shouldn't be 'wasted' on a unit which already has such a clear and strong role in the Zerg army - a role which doesn't rely on burrowed movement.

    Do you guys agree that Zerg don't need the utility of burrowed movement on Roaches?


    2) I didn't go into any of the threads in detail, but on both this forum and TL, I noticed that people don't think it's fair that Roaches only cost 1 Supply.

    As a Zerg player, my belief is that once you get to a lategame battle, the number of bodies that you can throw at your non-Zerg enemy is very important. By that point, there'll be a ton of AoE out on the field, and you'll want to make sure that you have enough bodies to take a lot of AoE damage and still dish out enough damage in return to hopefully damage the enemy army enough so that your next round of troops can finish it off.

    To use an exaggerated example, imagine if Zerg were capped at 100/100. Then, no matter how strong your economy is and how many Larvae you have, there is no way you are going to be able to defeat a 200/200 Protoss army. They will steamroll your 100/100 army while suffering very few casualties on their side, and then proceed to destroy whatever piecemeal reinforcements you send.

    Also, Roaches do have diminishing returns the larger the fight gets. In a lategame 200/200 battle, it's likely that a fair amount of your Roaches won't even be doing damage until the Roaches in front of them get killed. You just need a lot of Roaches because they need to be taking a lot of hits.

    If Roaches require 2 supply instead of 1, you'd basically only be able to field half the number of Roaches you currently can, and that would be really painful in the lategame, as your maxed out army would be that much smaller and that much more easily killed.

    Powerful AoE from Terrans and Protoss are the reason why units like the Marauder and Zealot (which are frequently compared to Roaches) cost 2 supply - because both races can perform well thanks to the tremendous AoE damage of their support units. While Zerg do have some lategame AoE (namely the Infestor), it's not quite comparable to what a few Siege Tanks/Seeker Missiles/Colossi/Psi Storm are capable of dishing out. And even if you have Brood Lords, you still need the tough Roaches to gum up the ground. Otherwise, Broodlings alone aren't enough to stop stuff like stimmed Marines from running under your Brood Lords and murdering them.

    In a nutshell, that's why I feel Roaches only cost 1 supply. Because they're generally the backbone of the Zerg army, and you basically need to have a lot of them.



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    Last edited by GRUNT; 04-21-2010 at 07:13 PM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    Quote Originally Posted by GRUNT View Post
    In a nutshell, that's why I feel Roaches only cost 1 supply. Because they're generally the backbone of the Zerg army, and you basically need to have a lot of them.



    .
    And, in a nutshell, that's why people don't like them: as a zerg player you have to be too reliant on Roaches, and it's never good to have one unit be that essential.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    And this is how threads get derailed .

    I'm specifically addressing a supposed balance issue people have with Roaches. Whether or not it's boring to see them play a prominent role in all 3 matchups is a different discussion :].

  4. #4

    Default Re: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    Roaches are a good strong unit from early game throughout, but towards late game it's better to move towards hydralisks, for the larger range, higher attack speed, and the fact that they can shoot air.

    And to argue the tunneling claws point, it's useful against any opponent who has no detectors, if you can just "walk" straight under the army guarding his base and he has no overseers, missile turrets, or photon cannons, then you can just unborrow next to his resources and basically take out his whole economy within a few seconds, before he can move his army over. Then you've got an advantage. Of course, that's only if your opponent leaves his base open without detectors...

    They're also useful to be able to burrow in the middle of the field, move around to the other side of the enemy army, and attack the dangerous units in the back rather than the infantry in the front.

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    Default Re: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    Quote Originally Posted by GRUNT View Post
    And this is how threads get derailed .

    I'm specifically addressing a supposed balance issue people have with Roaches. Whether or not it's boring to see them play a prominent role in all 3 matchups is a different discussion :].
    Well, this is how arguments get retarded, because if a unit is so essential it plays a vital role in all three matchups this is a severe balance issue and needs to be addressed. Your arguments are part of that larger discussion. Plus, I just woke up and didn't feel like typing something long :P

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    Default Re: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    I personally think the roach as alot of potential that players dont realized because strats are still being developed. The Roach by my definition is an early game tank, mid game meatshiled and late game gurilla fighter. Roach burrow movement makes it really easy to base raid and surround any unsuspecting army. With some micro they can be just if not more annoying as dark templar. Taking away roach burrow movement would make the zerg even more bland and give them less options. People just need to experiment with them more. Getting the surround is very critical in battles and the roach can get the surround quite easily.

  7. #7

    Default Re: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    And to argue the tunneling claws point, it's useful against any opponent who has no detectors, if you can just "walk" straight under the army guarding his base and he has no overseers, missile turrets, or photon cannons, then you can just unborrow next to his resources and basically take out his whole economy within a few seconds, before he can move his army over. Then you've got an advantage. Of course, that's only if your opponent leaves his base open without detectors...
    This is obviously a strategies usable for every unit who can move while burrowed, it is the same thing for the DT, if you opponent don't have detector get got a real problem.

    But right now the fact that the roach can move while burrowed don't serve its tank role very much. A roach is not sneaky, a roach tank the rest of the zerg damage dealer (I don't argue about if it is good or bad but it is the current situation), so why moving while underground? To sacrifice the rest of the army?

    The roach regen while burrowed is a great ability that serve reallt well its tank purpose. Why do the tunnelling claw isn't on another unit? on a harass unit? On a unit where the ability will serve a purpose.

    Ok i give a try making a new zerg unit. I make it melee because zerg got only 2. Protoss got more =/.

    Impalisk
    Prerequisites: Evolution chamber (why not?).
    Hit point: 80
    Size: Medium (like the sentry)
    Attack: 8 + 4vs light
    Attack cooldown: 10 (20% slower than zergling)
    Armor: 1

    Abilities:
    Tunnelling claw (upgrade at evo chamber, require lair)
    Impaling spine: Attack in a line (2 marauder long), native ability.
    Poison spine (?): Attacks poison the target slowing him for 2 second (upgrade at evo chamber, require hive)

    Cost: 50M 50G


    And maybe this thing could cliff walk ? LOL, what are your tought about it?

  8. #8
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    Default Re: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    Quote Originally Posted by Sietsh-Tenk View Post
    Well, this is how arguments get retarded, because if a unit is so essential it plays a vital role in all three matchups this is a severe balance issue and needs to be addressed. Your arguments are part of that larger discussion. Plus, I just woke up and didn't feel like typing something long :P
    At first I thought you were being serious (albeit misguided), but now I suspect you're just trolling.

    How does being the backbone of your army in all 3 matchups equate the Roach with being imbalanced?

    Your so-called 'larger discussion' is really weird. A unit which is used in all 3 matchups may be overpowered, yes. However, it is impossible to argue that a unit is overpowered only because it is used in all matchups. You must examine the reasons why it is used in all the matchups.

    I've heard lots of arguments about the Roach's toughness, its attack damage, and its cost. People have talked about those a great deal, and I don't want to just make a thread which rehashes arguments everyone's already made. I've also heard people complaining that the Roach should cost 2 supply, but I haven't seen anyone share my particular opinion on Roaches only needing 1 supply (even though it's possible that someone already has made a similar post). But in any case, that's why I made this thread. :]



    Quote Originally Posted by coolswampert View Post
    Roaches are a good strong unit from early game throughout, but towards late game it's better to move towards hydralisks, for the larger range, higher attack speed, and the fact that they can shoot air.

    And to argue the tunneling claws point, it's useful against any opponent who has no detectors, if you can just "walk" straight under the army guarding his base and he has no overseers, missile turrets, or photon cannons, then you can just unborrow next to his resources and basically take out his whole economy within a few seconds, before he can move his army over. Then you've got an advantage. Of course, that's only if your opponent leaves his base open without detectors...

    They're also useful to be able to burrow in the middle of the field, move around to the other side of the enemy army, and attack the dangerous units in the back rather than the infantry in the front.
    Quote Originally Posted by whitefire View Post
    I personally think the roach as alot of potential that players dont realized because strats are still being developed. The Roach by my definition is an early game tank, mid game meatshiled and late game gurilla fighter. Roach burrow movement makes it really easy to base raid and surround any unsuspecting army. With some micro they can be just if not more annoying as dark templar. Taking away roach burrow movement would make the zerg even more bland and give them less options. People just need to experiment with them more. Getting the surround is very critical in battles and the roach can get the surround quite easily.
    I'm not actually disagreeing with you guys that Tunneling Claws doesn't have its uses, and that it can be very effective.

    It's just that I feel that it's adding too much stuff onto a unit that's already very good at carrying out a fairly specific and important role in the Zerg army.

    Look at it his way: you could give Hydras and Zerglings and Brood Lords a non-Burrow activated ability. Maybe they're abilities which are only good occassionally, but they make a difference on those occassions. The point is that Zerg are fine without them - those units don't need any extra abilities. I just feel that at the moment, Roaches are in that boat. It just makes the Roach feel a little 'clunky' to me, and I think Zerg will still be able to win games just fine even without Tunneling Claws.
    Last edited by GRUNT; 04-21-2010 at 10:43 PM.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    roaches move slowly invisible due to the lack of range, high hp, high dmg, low range, low attack speed, get close, surround, victory

  10. #10

    Default Re: 2 Thoughts on Roaches

    Movement, invisibility AND high regen at the same time is just too much... Seriously wtf designers?

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