I find that most successful strategies incorporate excellent micromanagement skills, and the ability to block off important resources - effectively bottlenecking the opponents production output.
Easier said than done - comes with lots and lots of practice.
Proper build order, consistent scouting, timing of attacks, and map/resource control are probably the top skills to have. Micromanagement is a huge one as well, but I would argue these are more important.
I have a similar problem with fighting games like mortal kombat. I cannot play these types of games and enjoy them as there is no skill involved. It is just a case of bashing the control pad as fast as possible and what happens happens.
MK is one of the worst games I ever bought. On the other hand real playable games like GoW & Rainbow Six Vegas involve skill that can be developed over time.
+1 MiiNiPaa: I spent hours playing through those games. Even the dumbed down version for the N64 was more of a strategic shooter then where the current franchise is targeted now. I can't say I blame them for targeting the mainstream, but I do miss spending 45 mins planing a mission that gets executed in less then 5.
I loved Rainbow Six. The only complaint I had was the fact that a single bullet in almost all RS games before Vegas/Vegas 2 would kill you. A little frustrating when you bump into an enemy and get dropped before you could fire.
Same story comes with me when I play in Multiplayers. I'm the champion in the single player but get beaten up in multiplayer. I wonder many times that while I finish building up my economy and start making up the military, the expert gamers are ready to show themselves up with a huge army of monsters.
Tried to copy some and got beaten up more badly and too early....... lol..
@ BHX Specter: That's why you had to read the briefing. I only played the N64 version a few times but on the PC's you had nearly full customization ability. The only way you would have got shot up like that is if you ran into the room like you were playing CoD. You were meant to use the flash bangs, frag grenades, heartbeat sensor, door breaches and multiple access points into the rooms. That's if you couldn't get a sniper into position at an adjacent building. The training tutorial on the first one wasn't as in depth as the others but it did more or less cover that stuff. The most trouble I had in that game was 1.) I would always take III body armor without thinking about the weapons I just read about in the report 2.) I used to think that JHP meant that I was using "silent ammunition" for some reason.
That game was amazing, and now you guys are going to have me digging in my closet back at my mothers home so that I can stay up all night playing it again.
The only way you would have got shot up like that is if you ran into the room like you were playing CoD.
I owned the RS on N64, but there was a mission where you are at night and breaking into a mansion. You could either start in the front yard or on the roof. I would move slow but somehow always miss a guy in a room so when we were doing the mission I'd get shot in the back. That was usually how I got killed, would think the place was cleared and suddenly get dropped by some guy we missed.
For the record, I've been playing games since Atari 2600 and don't care for CoD. I only own the CoD games for my nephew because he swears by them.
Rainbow Six Vegas and Rainbow Six Vegas 2 remain my favourite games, even though I'm a crap player I love the storyline / theme of 'engaging tango'. I recently bought Rainbow Six 3 but it won't play on my xbox 360. It is a shame that Rainbow Six Patriots has been shelved for now as I was really looking forward to it.
As for most competetive games, MOBA, RTS or others, the two best things you can do is: play more(so practice), and watch replays.
Playing more makes you learn from your own mistakes, from enemy's mistakes, and just improve. Current pros at Starcraft were slow at first, but they played so much that they learned how to do stuff fast.
And watching and analysing replays is just as important. You can see exactly why you lost, what was going on. You can learn your enemy's tactic, and you can think of counter-tactic.
Apart from that, you can also watch other players'(better players) replays. You will see their build order, tricks, or whatever. You will notice that in RTS, when you play, everything's timed to miliseconds - there's not much time to think, you must act.
To those of you who asked why play old games, enough blasphemy! My gaming childhood grew on games like Starfox 64, Turok, Battle Tanx, Age of Empires I and II, Stronghold and Stronghold Crusader. Those games will always be special to me and I will always play them so long as I have something that can do so.
as there is no skill involved. It is just a case of bashing the control pad as fast as possible and what happens happens.
If you think that, you are greatly mistaken. If that was the case, pros would get beaten frequently. Dodging your opponent, performing combos, attacking at the right moment, etc are some of the skills involved. Its not just luck+gamepad bashing. Trust me, MK is one of my favourite games.
1. Never admit to being a noob.
2. Insane micromanagement. You must be proficient with the keyboard and all hotkeys.
3. Equally insane macromanagement. You must build reinforcements and grow your economy while also controlling your army.
4. Grow an army as fast as possible.
5. Use that army effectively.
6. Adapt and counter. There is no single strategy or build that will defeat your opponent every time. If an opponent has amassed anti-air units, discontinue spamming air units or you will get demolished.
7. Never linger.
So much emphasis on micromanagement! When I used to play RTS often, I didn't spend too much time on micromanagement. It's far more important to make good decisions about major stuff (what to research and when, how to divide resources, what unit and/or building mix to build, how to react to enemy tactics). I used to do pretty well online vs people back in the days I had time to spend on playing long RTS sessions online.
In the Blizzard realm of RTS games, raids are important. You have to keep pressure up on your opponent to restrict expansion. It's all a resource game - if you can control more resources than your opponent, you have a solid chance of winning, at least over time. It weakens you slightly when you expand, and opens you up for an attack. But the window is small and if they don't take it, you'll come out on top.
Because of this, map control is huge. For example in SC, sticking some siege tanks on high grounds near critical points (high traveled paths) with a handful of marines to guard against air can be devastating. If they have all ground units and walk by, they won't even see your tank and it'll just wreck whatever group they just tried to send by. I always loved playing Terran because I could just slowly leap-frog my siege tanks towards their base, and at the same time be dropping medivacs full of marines in the back of their base.