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Editor's Note: While many of these will be obvious to anyone who has played the game, or even Warcraft III, we hope there are still some useful tricks here that everyone can benefit from.

Basics

  • You can select units with the left mouse button individually, you can select groups by dragging a selection box around them.
  • To add units to your currently selected force, hold the Shift while clicking on them or dragging a box around them.
  • Alternatively you can deselect units from the current force by holding Shift while clicking on a selected unit.  You can also do this in the command card in the bottom center of the screen.
  • To select all units of the same type on the current screen, hold the CTRL when clicking on a single unit.
  • You can add all units of a single type to your current selection by holding Shift+CTRL when clicking on a unit.
  • You can alternatively deselect all of a certain type of units from the current force by holding Shift+CTRL and clicking on a single unit of that type.  This also works in the command card in the bottom center of the screen.
  • The right mouse button makes the currently selected unit do an obvious action (known as an "auto-action") that depends on what you right clicked on.  If an area of the map is right clicked, the selected units will move there.  If an enemy unit is right clicked, they will attack it.  If an allied unit is right clicked, they will follow it.  If a worker right clicks on a mineral field or a refinery/extractor/assimilator, they will gather from the resource.
  • Using the attack command (hotkey: A) and clicking on ground will order the selected units to attack anything leading up to that point.   This is different than a move command, which they will simply move past units without retaliating.  This is generally known as "attack-move" or "attack-ground" and is the most common command used in the game.
  • An alternate hotkey added in StarCraft II for attack-move is to hold Shift while right clicking the ground.
  • Buildings which produce units have an ability called "Set Rally Point" which allows you to set the destination of a unit after it's produced.  Right clicking on a target area or unit is a shortcut.
  • Rally points emulates auto-actions as if you right clicked the target area or object.
  • Holding down the left-click mouse button on a portrait of a unit that is moving will force the camera to smoothly follow the unit's movement.
  • Holding the middle Mouse button will "pan" the camera across the battlefield in a smooth fashion.
  • In simple summary, left click selects units or the target of abilities, right click performs an assumed action, Shift will add/remove and CTRL changes a selection/deselection action to "all units on screen".

General
  • Any unit in the game can be pushed around by other units, including Archon Warps. However, this only works if the unit isn't issued a "hold position" command or is in the process of attacking.
  • Hit ALT to see the HP bars of every unit on the screen.
  • New Idle Worker Button shows up in the lower left corner of the battlefield area.  It will show you the number of worker units not performing an action.  It's shortcut is F1.
  • Holding CTRL while clicking on the Idle Worker Button or pressing CTRL + F1 selects all idle workers.
  • Holding Shift while clicking on the Idle Worker Button or pressing Shift + F1 will add an idle worker to your current selection.
  • Abilities can be targetted in the wireframe squares in your command card at the bottom of the screen.
  • Hit CTRL + ALT + F to toggle the framerate counter in the top left.
  • Mutating Hatcheries' field of vision is very small. A Bunker can be placed near it without the player noticing.
  • Workers are now targeted by default by enemy units, but repeatedly hitting "S" will lower their priority if you have the workers selected.
  • Assigning workers to a Vespene geyser before the building is finished will cause the workers to start gathering gas after the building is finished.
  • Hitting the Space Bar button after you heard a tactical nuke callout may bring you to the location of the red dot.
  • You can set a complex patrol path by holding Shift while you select the waypoints.
  • Hitting F12 brings up the Help Menu, allowing you to see the tech tree of each race and unit information sheets.  This allows you to quickly identify generic counters and weaknesses if your new to the game.
  • In the settings, you can set some very useful options that are turned off by default, such as default healthbars to always or showing building grids when placing buildings.
  • If a production building is surrounded completely, it will halt production until it has an exit point.
Creating Control Groups
  • Hit CTRL + any number to bind selected units to a control group. Then hit Shift + the same number to add newly selected units to that control group.
  • TAB and Shift-TAB will cycle between control groups.
  • CTRL group selections are not removed if units enter a transport or Bunker and the group is selected, like they were in Brood War. The units will not be able to be selected while they are in the transport or Bunker, but they will be once they leave.
  • In a large selection group of various units, each specific unit type can be cycled through by pressing the TAB key, while Shift + TAB will cycle backwards. This is often used for Terran production buildings, and Protoss can use it to Chrono Boost production buildings without going back to their base. A single unit is selected by just clicking on its wireframe, while CTRL + clicking a unit selects all units of that type. Shift-clicking an individual unit removes them from the selection.
  • The above mentioned TAB method to cycle between sub-groups changes the action card in the lower right, allowing you to change the usable abilities used within a selected mass without deselecting the force.
Creating a queue of Multiple Commands
  • With a unit selected, multiple orders can be used in succession (or "queued up") by holding Shift while clicking the mouse or hotkey.  Actions involve almost anything from basic commands (ex: Move, attack, Hold position) to abilities (ex: EMP, Infested Terrans, Force Field) to changing modes. (Seige mode, Burrow, Warp Prism's Matrix Mode)
  • The maximum number of these waypoints a person can queue for a unit is 32
  • Units can queue up attack commands by holding Shift and giving an attack order on each unit. This will not always work due to the AI and pathing.
  • Multiples of a building can be added to worker construction waypoints by holding Shift. The building does not have to be reselected from the build menu.
  • SCVs and Probes should almost always be ordered to go back to mining after they have created a building by holding Shift and right clicking on the resources.
  • Up to four spots that units will follow once they leave the building can be assigned to a rally point by holding Shift and clicking.

Terran
  • Raising a Supply Depot will force allied units standing on it to move aside.  Enemy units will prevent the action.
  • SCVs cannot be loaded into a Command Center or Orbital Command by simply right-clicking on it with SCVs selected. Instead, the Load button has to be clicked from the Command Center, which loads the 5 closest SCVs.
  • When queueing up attack commands with Siege Tanks it will allow them to conserve their fire and not waste all their shots on just one unit.
  • When making a wall, set the rally point to go into the base so that units coming out of the building spawn inside the wall instead of outside.
  • Type in "/dance" for infantry to start dancing, "/cheer" for infantry to start cheering.
  • Thors will use their GtA attack against Colossi if their GtG attack is out of range.
  • MULEs can be used to either scout, supply fresh expansions or repair mechanical units or buildings. While they have infinite cast range, they must be cast in a visible area.
  • Units can be loaded into transports in order to avoid the effects of the Ghost's EMP.
  • Holding Shift when building Supply Depots can really speed up the process.
  • Remember that you can EMP the opponent's orbital command before dropping a nuke.  If it's their only means of detection this can definately improve your chances of success.
  • Turning on "Show Building Grids" in the options can help with your ramp block ins.
  • When stacking Factories on top of each other, ensure 2 squares are open to the right of their addon to ensure an odd thor can get out if it is produced above the tech lab.

Zerg

  • Zerg Hatcheries have two rally points which can be assigned.  One rallies drones while the second rally point sets the destination of any other unit.  Each will automatically be set based on if you click on a resource or not.   Queens by default do not have a rally point
  • Hatcheries can all be assigned to the same control group such that when the Larvae is selected, it will select every Hatchery's Larvae simultaneously, which can all be given the same rally point.
  • Each Zerg egg can be given its own rally point.
  • Nydus Worms can have their own rally points. They can even be used to manually and "safely" mine from a separate mineral spot.
  • When a Nydus worm erupts from the ground, everyone can hear the announcement even if they don't see the origin of the Nydus Worm.  It's comparible to a Nuke in that fashion.
  • Overlord troop dropping has no announcement noise along with it which is nice for expanding on islands or trying to sneak units to assault the flank of a base.
  • The Overlord's Creep Drop ability is toggle-able. When activated the Overlord will always drop creep unless it is in transit.
  • Changelings can't be loaded into a Nydus Worm.
  • An Infestor can be instructed to move to a location, burrow, move to another location while underground, unburrow, cast two Infested Marines, and then sneak out again all in one go.
Protoss
  • There is an icon in the lower right of your battlefield screen showing how many warp gates are available.  You can click on this icon or hit W to select all Warp Gates.
  • Stalkers can be moved to a cliff, Shift + clicked to use Blink once they reach the edge, and continue moving. This helps avoid the situations where Stalkers are ordered to Blink, but the ones in the back are too far away to make it over the gap or cliff.
  • Carrier Interceptors get a free shot if they're deployed right in front of their target.
  • Archons have three different costs since they can be created by a combination of High and Dark Templar.
    • Two Dark Templar = 250/250
    • Dark Templar and High Templar = 175/275
    • Two High Templar 100/300.
  • Holding Shift when building Pylons can really speed up the process. It also allows you to see their estimated pylon fields to plan coverage.
  • Chrono Boost can be cast on wireframe selections such that the player doesn't always have to go back to their base.
  • Feedback is most useful against Terrans as many of their units have energy.   Prime targets include Ghosts, Medivacs, Banshees, Battlecrusiers and Thors.
Have a tip that we missed or notice an error? Email gradius[at]sclegacy.com.
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