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I was nuked for the first time in multiplayer (ladder) earlier today and, if it weren't for the fact that my opponent forgot to cloak (I'm in Bronze league), I wouldn't have known which mineral-line to evacuate (my army was out of position).

I don't recall seeing an indicator on the minimap and I assume I must have missed the indicator on the main screen. (I'm not sure if the replay will show me exactly what I'd seen during the game.)

My question: what is made visible to the (soon-to-be) victim of a nuclear launch on (i) the minimap and (ii) the main screen? And what are tips for quickly pinpointing the location of a nuke?

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There is an audio warning when a nuke is placed.

  1. A Notification is shown above the minimap which indicates a nuke has been placed, doesn't indicate the location though.

Yellow Nuke detected text above minimap

  1. There is a small red dot visible to you on the main screen regardless of vision (ie. you can see it through the fog of war).

Red dot on corner of nexus  

The audio warning should be enough to prompt you to look for the red dot.

The dot that pinpoints the exact location can be hard to see and you don't have much time, think about the most likely targets: your army and your workers.

You can easily move your army somewhere else just to be sure and then check on your bases starting with the base that is most likely to be hit (probably your latest expansion). Using camera hotkeys on your bases can sometimes be useful, especially in these situations, but not necessary.

Another likely target is if you have a large amount of depots grouped close together (one nuke will destroy them). Obviously you can't move them so your only defense in this case would be to not build them all close together, or to take out the ghost quickly.

With a bit of practice it gets really easy and quick to find where the nuke is going to hit and simply move your workers away.

  • Usually the nuke will be placed around buildings (like in the picture) or behind probes or minerals to make it slightly harder to see.
  • Be wary that you don't move your army INTO a nuke, sometimes people will nuke in a location that anticipates you retreating your army.
  • Spreading out your army while idle (or after hearing the warning) could be useful
  • Like in the picture your buildings/units may be red, the same color as the dot, which may make it even more difficult to spot. Playing in team colors would prevent this from being an issue.
  • 2
    the nuke placement in that pic is incredibly sneaky! i do use green/red colors (i.e., i am always green) so it should've been easy for me to spot. i'll go back to the replay. – iceman Apr 20 '15 at 4:33
  • just wanted to come back to this question - are we sure that we get a minimap notification in-game when opponent launches nuke? it seems like we may only get a minimap ping in replays but not during the game itself... – iceman May 14 '15 at 1:28
  • From what I read you do get a minimap notification in game, it sounds like it was a change to make the game more accessible to people who could not hear the verbal notification. I would have to do some testing to validate it also it may have changed. iirc i'm pretty sure that there is though, a flashing red notification. I'll try it tonight and get back to you. – Aequitas May 14 '15 at 1:33
  • btw, i'm happy to hop in a custom game w/ you if it speeds up testing - lmk! – iceman May 14 '15 at 1:50
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    Looks like there is no ping on the minimap, observer UI will have a ping with the location of the nuke. Updated answer – Aequitas May 15 '15 at 22:39

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