Terran Strategy Guide

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The Terran race are the humans of Starcraft 2. Their deliberate and defensive style has oft made this race the preferred choice for new players. It is very hard to attack a Terran player early in the game who does not want to be attacked, giving new time players to orient themselves and prepare before making an attack.

However, good Terrans do not just sit back and macro up but instead are constantly trying to inflict damage on their opponent with attacks and drops. In this Terran strategy guide, you will discover some of the best overall strategies you can use as Terran as well the best unit compositions you can use to dominate your opponents.

Slow and Steady

It is no secret, the Terran race has more defensive capabilities than the other races. Between the ability to build Supply Depot walls to the long-range Siege Tank to the explosive power of the Widow Mine, it is very hard to assault a fully fortified Terran player.

The primary way this advantage manifests itself is that Terran players opt to dedicate a lot of their resources to improving their economy while taking advantage of their defensive traits to hold off aggression. Once their economy is rolling, the Terran may then move out and grab their third expansion.

One common way Terran players do this is by building a macro CC. After they take their natural expansion, the Terran can build an extra Orbital Command within the protection of their main base. This Orbital Command can drop MULEs and produce SCVs to help saturate the first two bases. Once the Terran gets enough units out, they can then lift off this Orbital Command and land it at their third base. This allows them to safely grab a third “expansion” without risking early attack.

Drop Mania

The other aspect of playing a good Terran is taking advantage of the Medivac. With Ignite Afterburners and its dual function as a healing unit, the Medivac is superior to any other transport. The Terran have a lot of effective units that can be dropped as well.

It should be no surprise then that performing drops regularly is key to being successful as the Terran race. Some of the best dropship combinations include:

  • 2x Hellbats: Great against harvesters that are lightly defended, particularly after the Infernal Pre-Igniter upgrade has been researched. Hellbats are sturdy enough to take down a Queen or a few units that might be defending a base.
  • 4x Hellions: Hellions are great at killing enemy workers and have the advantage of stacking to up to 4 in a single Medivac. The downside is they are easily destroyed by just about everything the enemy will have on defense and they also cannot easily do damage to buildings.
  • 8x Marines: With upgrades, 8 Marines and a Medivac is sturdy enough to take down small enemy armies. The enemy will have to send in a sizable amount of units to clean up this drop, particularly if you wedge the Marines in the mineral line to prevent the damage dealt by Zerglings.
  • 4x Marauders: Marauders are great at destroying buildings. One great strategy is to try to snipe several related tech structures with Marauders. If you can use 4 Marauders to snipe the Spawning Pool and Baneling Nest, the Zerg player will be very susceptible to a bio-based attack while it works to rebuild these tech structures.

You can increase the effectiveness of your drops by either performing multiple drops at once, performing drops during major engagements, or combining the two. When the opponent is distracted by a drop or by a major fight, send a second Medivac full of units into a distant expansion. While your opponent is focused on the first drop or major battle, they might not notice the second drop come in at all, allowing it to do damage completely unchecked.

Popular Unit Compositions

There are many viable unit compositions that players can use depending on the map, race match-up, and personal preference. Here are the most popular combinations:


Bio forces are armies that are based off of Marines and Marauders with Stimpack and backed up by Medivacs. These armies are very mobile and great at dropping and indirectly attacking the opponent. When faced with higher tier units, this unit base is often supported by Widow Mines, Ghosts, Siege Tanks, or even Vikings.

One of the biggest mistakes players make with bio is that they are reluctant to split up their army into multiple forces. If you are not going to split up your army and attack many different fronts at once, you might as well play as mech, which is stronger in this capacity. Players are reluctant to split up their bio forces because they know that if their forces are not together they have no chance to stand up to the enemy’s full army.

Just remember bio is faster than whatever your opponent is going to put together, so you do not have to engage until you withdraw and re-macro your forces. Use Stimpack and Ignite Afterburners to save as much of your split army as possible until you can get your units back in one place.


Mech forces are based entirely off of units that come out of the factory. With enough Siege Tanks and Hellbats, the Terran can take complete control of the ground. Thors and Missile Turrets are used to chase off light air units since Siege Tanks and Hellbats cannot attack air units. Vikings and Ravens may be tacked on to provide support, particularly from armored and massive air units.

Mech has the advantage of being impossible to engage directly on the ground but the disadvantage of being extremely slow. It takes forever to unsiege and siege tanks that you want to move. Given that tanks not in Siege Mode are quite vulnerable, you need to be very deliberate and methodical in your movements to have success with this build.


Air compositions consisting of Battlecruisers, Ravens, and Vikings are extremely powerful against all three races and difficult to stop. Fortunately for the opponent, building a maxed out army of just these units almost never happens because it is such a gas-intensive build. Battlecruisers and Ravens cost huge amounts of Vespene Gas, so forget going for a maxed-out air army unless you are on 4+ bases.

Additional Terran Strategies

Over time, more and more Terran strategies will be added to this guide. Check back regularly for more updates.

If you want access to some great builds that you can use to start dominating the competition immediately, consider The Osiris Method. This contains the step by step builds you need to crush the competition in Starcraft 2. Check it out below: