Muta/Baneling Expand (vs. Zerg)
This is a safe build designed to reach mid-game with a small group of Mutalisks and an expansion.
Mutalisks will shut down the Zergling/Baneling early game and force your opponent to transition if they have not already. Compared to a Roach opening, a Baneling opening allows for early aggression before your opponent is able to mass a fair number of Roaches. Since you already have a Baneling Nest, speed Banelings are more easily obtained in the mid-game. Having Mutalisks out before your opponent who is also getting Mutalisks will potentially let you snipe Drones or Queens.
Against a player who opts for Hydralisks over Mutalisks in the mid-game, the Mutalisks allow you to take map control and expand.
Basic Build Order
- Since ZvZ is incredibly volatile, after 18 supply you must judge the number of Zerglings you need to stay alive.
- Versus a confirmed Mutalisk build, instead of building 4 Mutalisks you may wish to build 3 Corruptors and research air upgrade. This can force your opponent to abandon Mutalisks in favor of Hydralisks and prepares you for a Brood Lord endgame.
Use your initial Overlord to scout your opponent's base. In the case of long rush distances, use a drone scout.
- Spawning Pool: This opening is safe versus most pool timings on most maps, excluding very early pools and maps with short rush distances.
- Extractor: Gas before pool indicates a speedling opening. A slightly later Extractor often indicates Roaches.
- @100% Spawning Pool: This is the ideal time for your opponent to build a Roach Warren. Your opponent will not have units to kill your scouting drone. This is also when your opponent may begin researching Metabolic Boost, which you can scout by closely observing the Spawning Pool's animation. A faster rotation indicates that it is researching.
Versus Roach Warren
Your opponent has opened a brief window of opportunity where a Baneling attack may be fruitful for killing workers. You want to threaten your opponent to force him to build more Roaches, giving you time to prepare your ramp for a Roach counter while continuing to tech to Mutalisks. On maps with short rush distances where Roaches can travel from main to main faster than a Spine Crawler can be built, you will need to either build a Roach-tight wall of Spine Crawlers (and Evolution Chambers if need be) to prevent a Roach counter-push from killing you. This way, you may invest in drones for later economy rather than Zerglings to hold off Roaches (cost-equivalent Zerglings decrease in effectiveness the larger the Roach count). On some maps, this means building a Creep Tumor to connect your base and ramp. The spinecrawlers can be repurposed later in the game to hold off larger Roach pushes attacking your expansions, against small numbers of speedbanes looking to puncture your economy. The immobility of Roaches versus speedlings and Banelings makes your opponent vulnerable to economic harassment before he makes a mid-game transition.