A Brief Introduction
The StarCraft series is one of the few competitive RTS games that has a thriving competitive scene. The game is centered on a military science fiction theme and is developed by Blizzard Entertainment. While the original game was released in 1998, the sequel and current state of the game (StarCraft 2) was not released until 2010. The game’s most popular audience (and competitive players) hail from South Korea but the game’s popularity has expanded worldwide.
StarCraft involves two competitors that choose between three different races to play from. The Terrans are humans exiled from Earth and are skilled at adapting to their present environment. The Zerg is a race of insectoid aliens attempting to solve their genetic imperfections by assimilating with other races. The Protoss is a humanoid type species that delves in the science of psionic abilities and technological advancements as they attempt to preserve their way of living.
StarCraft 2 had severe developmental issues (hence the huge gap between the release of StarCraft and its sequel, StarCraft 2). It was originally announced in 2007 to be in development, but various reasons led to its delay. Original resources that were supposed to be used on the development of StarCraft 2 were instead reassigned to Blizzard’s flagship MMO game, World of Warcraft. The second reoccurring issue was finding the right engine to use for the game and making sure it was both DirectX 9 and DirectX 10 compatible. The game initially used the Havok physics engine but this was later replaced by a more custom physics engine.
It would take three years before a playable beta was released by Blizzard. The game was in such popular demand that beta keys were being sold for as high as $400 on eBay. After 5 months of beta testing, Blizzard decided to simultaneously release their new battle.net platform along with StarCraft 2 and World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. Upon its release, StarCraft 2 was herald as the new benchmark for RTS games. The game featured improved storytelling, advanced graphics and cut scenes, and most importantly, an improved competitive and multiplayer experience.
Betting on StarCraft 2
There are a multitude of different bet types that can be placed on StarCraft 2 matches. If you don’t want to use real money to bet with or just want to practice first, there are numerous companies that allow betting with virtual currency (Unikrn for example). The key is to make sure you’re making smart bets. If you’re new to the competitive scene of StarCraft 2, the research required to make consistent and valuable bets can seem daunting at first. The first step is to analyze the current competitors and formulate your own opinion on how a competitor performs in tournaments. Most individual players will stream on services such as Twitch.tv, and previous competitions and tournaments can be found on YouTube. General practice is to evaluate the competition, formulate an opinion on a matchup, and pick a valued bet that you feel confident in making.
Like any sports, upsets happen. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to bet on competitors that have an 80% or higher win rate. A $20 bet would only net a $4 payout or less, all at the chance of losing your $20 for essentially a low return. Finding a high bet, or where the odds are closer to 60-70%, are considered valuable bets. Medium bets, or where the competition has odds of 50-60% per competitor of winning, is also important to look at. Essentially the competitors are even in skill, but if the bettor has done their homework, they may find subtle differences that would incline them to pick the winning player. It’s important to make bets on games you have an ample amount of information about (I strongly recommend not betting on games that you can’t find information on). Once you start betting just because everyone else is can lead to problems. Always make informative bets.
Develop an Edge
Whether you’re using a sportsbook to bet on StarCraft 2 (you can check out our reviews to find a suitable bookmaker) with real currency or just betting with Unikoins on Unikrn, always check out the odds on multiple sources. Pinnacle eSports has their own odds, and they’re widely regarded as being competitive with other bookmakers. Always check out other people’s opinions as well. Reddit and Facebook have thriving communities that go into detail on each team and popular opinions on who will win. Popular websites like Team Liquid’s community site have current rankings, team information, streams, replays, stats, and a plethora of other information that can be used to make informative bets. Gosu Gamers also has player feedback reports and a community dedicated to just discussing the professional competition.
Making your Bet
Just like most eSports, StarCraft 2 has typical bets between two competitors facing off against each other. Going into a competitive tournament, the first thing you want to do is look for valuable bets. We’ve outlined what high, medium, and low bet values are, so now we want to look for one of those medium-high bets that will return a maximum profit. Generally I don’t want to all-in one matchup, so if I’m looking to spend $20 I’ll bet on 2-3 matchups. This would be a theoretical bet:
In matchup 1, Competitor A (Life) has a 75% chance of winning over Competitor B (Snute). I feel confident in Life winning, so I bet $16 with a payout of $4.
In matchup 2, Competitor A (sOs) has an 85% chance of winning against Competitor B (Soulkey). I know Soulkey has historically played decent against sOs in the past, and I feel they have a slight chance of getting the upset. I bet $2 on Soulkey with a potential payout of $10.
The most likely outcome is that I win the bet for Matchup 1 and lose the bet on the second matchup. The end result is I come out even on the day. However, if I win Matchup 2, then I end the day up $14.
There are other unique bets that can be made, as well as multiplier (accumulator) for higher returns. If you don’t fancy betting on just head-to-head matchups, you can find bookmakers with prop bets, although StarCraft 2 has limited prop bets. As always, have fun with betting. While a select few make it into a career, the majority of people are just casual bettors. Unless you’ve had years of experience, make smaller bets until you have full confidence in your skills.