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I understand the advantages warp gates have over gateways, but I'm having a horrible time trying to use them effectively. With gateways it is very easy using just hotkeys to queue up more troops while you're microing a fight. However, with warp gates, not only can you not queue production, but you have to jump the map to wherever your pylon is in order to warp in more troops. At best this is distracting, and at worst it can lose you a battle if your attention is diverted at a critical moment. Or, like me, you forget to be building troops and your minerals pile up.

I know one good solution is to bring a warp prism with your army and warp troops directly onto the battlefield. I'm more worried about that early-midgame period--probably the first battle of the game--before you have a robotics facility. (Plus, I don't want to be forced to go robotech every game.)

So what do other Protoss players do? How do you take advantage of the warp gates despite the extra attention they require?

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

You have many options here. Many protoss players use proxy pylons placed in strategic locations on the map so you don't have to divert your attention too far away from the battle in order to warp in new units. You can even go so far as to bring a probe with you in battle to make pylons a short distance behind your army to help warp in units and also provide supply for the large army you're creating.

Hot keys can be used to great effect here if you practice a bit. Double-tapping a hotkey will center the screen on that location, so if you have a pylon or other unit near a pylon where you want to warp hotkeyed, you can center location on it with a hotkey, hit W (to select all your warpgates), shift+click a bunch, and then double-tap a hot key to go back to your army in a second or so with practice.

Remember also that it's generally a good idea not to queue units, so warp gates enforcing this is a good way to practice your macro for other protoss production buildings and if you ever plan on playing Terran. You generally want to be spending your minerals on things you get now, rather than things you will get later. This is an important point which is mentioned often by Day9 in his tutorial casts.

Most of all, just keep practicing.

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the [W] key selects all warp gates, no matter where you are. This allows you to constantly warp in units when needed. The icon in the lower right corner of the view area also selects warp gates, and tells you how many are ready to produce a unit.

Also, some players hotkey a pylon near their front line to deploy troops quickly.

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Do the other keyboard-layouts have a similar key? –  BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft Aug 20 '10 at 17:01
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Yes? I'm not as familiar with them. Hover over the warp gate icon in the bottom right corner, and it should tell you which key to use? –  McKay Aug 20 '10 at 17:07
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