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1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/5/2016 09:33:00


Quicksilver
Level 47
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On the 1 v 1 ladder map, how long do the pros spend choosing their starting picks?

I'm training on this map and it would help to know the level of effort pros put in to choose their starting picks. That's one of my weakest skills.

Edited 7/5/2016 10:07:27
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/5/2016 09:39:47

AI
Level 59
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I'm not sure if I'm a pro but I never spend more than 5 minutes but ofc you should have some thoughts behind your picks, they are very important
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/5/2016 09:44:27


Norman 
Level 57
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Their "first" picks? As for me I press the commit button when, I haven't moved stuff around for like 10-20 minutes. The total picking time lasts then up to maybe 50 minutes or so.

That being said I calculate the outcome against all viable opponent picking strategies and am aiming for versatile picks which can win against every opponent picking strategy which isn't a direct counter to mine.

Edited 7/5/2016 09:47:58
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/5/2016 10:11:08


DanWL
Level 61
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It's situation specific.
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/5/2016 10:12:29


ZeroBlindDragon
Level 57
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Most games are decided from the starting picks, yes! I take all the time available (2 days & 20 hours) to make these. I try to make sure I am pleased with all 11 combinations of picks I can get. To keep things simple, I analyze the following when choosing my territories:

- Coverage: the placement of random wastelands can create one or several "zones" rich with income compared to the rest of the map. You usually want to have a spot in each one of them because you don't want to let your opponent grab them for free!
- Safety: while coverage is good, you may want to have bonuses that are isolated (in zones that are not rich) so they cannot be contested, which makes it easier for you to fight your opponent in the contested zones...
- Expansion possibilities for each starting territory: while safety is good, having too many "safe" picks will get you cornered and unable to gain income while your opponent does so. Here's a very good example:

https://www.warlight.net/MultiPlayer?GameID=11255731

When the only bonus you can expand into is South Africa, you know you're cornered! Meanwhile, I had the opportunity to invade Asia (rich zone!) after repelling Tac(ky)tical from Western Russia.


It's important to adapt what kind of picks you want depending on the map.

So yeah, hopefully this proves my point: picks can make or break a game.
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/5/2016 10:34:21


Ex-Kaerox
Level 59
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Not a pro but an average+ player here, Zero said it all.

Also, Dan's right too, sometimes, you get instantly inspired and pick in like 5 minutes, and you're confident about it.
And sometimes, you pick after 2 days and considering all possibilities, and still think : "well, my picks suck".
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/6/2016 02:32:34


Quicksilver
Level 47
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Thank you Zero, your answer was exactly the sort of thing that I wanted. That's fantastic.
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/30/2016 05:32:06


ZeroBlindDragon
Level 57
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Sorry for the "bump", but could a moderator bring this thread to the Strategic forum? I find myself often coming back here to fetch what I wrote for the players I am tutoring and I believe this could be discussed further!

@Quicksilver: You're welcome, buddy! =)

@Kaerox: Dang, I never noticed you posted here! What a coincidence!

Edited 7/30/2016 05:35:11
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/30/2016 05:54:44

Omniscient 
Level 54
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I usually make picks in under 2 minutes.


It's...probably a bad idea.

Edited 7/30/2016 05:56:36
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/30/2016 06:02:50


NoonTiger 
Level 55
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Just remember to check the settings, I sometimes make this mistake when playing with commanders. (Zero has some insightful info, I just tried to contribute)

Edited 7/30/2016 06:06:38
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/30/2016 07:28:01


Semicedevine
Level 59
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sometimes first pick is extremely important... but not for the reason you think it is

because you can actually use it to figure out the maximum amount of intel your opponent can (and more importantly, can't) potentially have

this strategy works best when you have a board where theres one obvious pick thats much more OP than all others (could be because of relative safety, positional advantage, etc.)

when its obvious that you and your opponent will have the same 1st pick, set either your 4th or 5th as a counter to it that only works if your opponent has no intel on it

the logic is that if your opponent happens to get 1st pick order (which you can determine from losing 1st pick), you can deduce that if any of his picks end up conflicting with your 4th and 5th AT ALL, he'll always get it regardless of what number he puts it under; thus, you can safely assume that if you get your 4th and 5th, the picks never conflicted and therefore the opponent has no intel on it; if they're counterpicks, then he would have to expand in a really weird guessing way to avoid getting countered

NOTE: This only works 100% of the time for 3 picks

heres a barely relevant example:
https://www.warlight.net/MultiPlayer?GameID=11493743

I could expand somewhat safely in my 4th pick knowing he very unlikely had intel that I was there

game would have been over 10 turns earlier had he expanded normally in the 4 bonus, but instead he decided to play a really risky blind counter gamble

(darn wish I had a better example to show because in 4 picks, an opponent with 1st pick order can still get intel on your 4th and 5th so long as they make it one of their last picks)

(sht gets complicated real fast in 4 picks lol)

tl;dr: I will find you
- hidden post by Semicedevine
1 v 1 Ladder: how pivotal are the first picks?: 7/30/2016 08:53:16


Buns157 
Level 66
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Usually about 5 minutes, though sometimes I guess it's as high as 10.
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