This video gave me a huge revelation:


There is one true way to harness the Zerg's power: overcome the enemy with sheer numbers, with continuous wave of forces, attacking from multiple directions. Yes, the only way to truly harness the Zerg's power, is by going Sauron.

JulyZerg popularized the Sauron Zerg in Brood War, so I'm wondering why he is yet to make it happen in Starcraft 2. I noticed one reason: Sauron works effectively on wide areas, with less to no choke points, allowing you plenty of room to maneuver your hydras and lings. Unfortunately, most 1v1 maps in SC2 have really narrow ramps, making it easier to defend against the Sauron. Protoss and Terran can turtle up, but Sauron must be executed as soon as possible. With waves easily countered by defending a single ramp, we have yet to see Sauron zerg in Starcraft 2.

So as a bronze league player wanting to learn the Sauron in SC2, I'm asking all Zergs out there: what are little things I can do to effectively execute the Sauron?

  • Is "Sauron Zerg" an accepted term in the SC2 community? In any case, +1 for the reference. Commented Jan 28, 2011 at 0:06
  • We don't flame people based on their leagues, that's in the battle.net forums.
    – juan
    Commented Jan 28, 2011 at 4:12
  • 1
    Zerg already have an evil leader(ess), and that's that!
    – DrFish
    Commented Jan 28, 2011 at 8:43

1 Answer 1


So let's talk about Sauron Zerg, because a number of things have changed between Broodwars and Starcraft 2.

First off, Siege Tanks will use smart targeting so they don't all hit the same unit (and waste damage), this means they are much more effective against mass units; Colossus retains all the strengths of the Reaver, but with wider AoE and faster attack rate; even High Templar now have smart cast to make it much easier to get out Psionic Storms. Splash damage has gotten much easier and stronger in Starcraft 2, and many units do higher dps than their Broodwar equivalents, while hit points have remained largely the same. In short, massing units isn't as effective as it once was.

In addition to the increase in AoE, unit production rates and harvesting rates have become much faster. While in Broodwars it was unheard of to hit supply cap on less than 3 based, many Starcraft 2 players do it on 2 base. The result is much shorter games (on average), with Terran and Protoss opponents hitting supply cap.

Finally, there are the map differences. Shorter maps, with more resources per base, and nice chokes really reduce the numerical base advantage that Sauron abused.

In short, its not as effective as it once was... which leads me to my point:

You should try to Sauron every game

Despite everything I just said the Sauron Zerg is the Starcraft 2 equivalent of playing a ZvP on Metalopolis where your opponent has his main and natural and you have every other base on the map. If you're that far ahead, it doesn't matter what you do; this was the whole point of Sauron Zerg: getting more ahead. It doesn't take a genius of July's talent to win from that situation, but it does take a genius to get to that situation. The impressive thing about the Sauron Zerg wasn't that July could wipe the floor with TheRock, he could have done that on 5 bases, it was that he actually could get to 9 bases. July was so much better than Rock that he was able to get to such an impossibly powerful position.

So here is my guidelines for you:

  1. When you're ahead, don't try to win
  2. When you're ahead, try to get more ahead

I know I've said it a dozen times (as has: Idra, Ret, Fruitdealer, Day9, HD, and just about every other pro-player out there, even Artosis), but your number 1 goal is always to get more ahead. What Sauron Zerg teaches us is that getting more ahead is the easiest way to win.

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