Interview with White-Ra
Thu 1st Nov 2012 - 7:51pm
I recently got the chance to share an Interview with one of the world most well known Starcraft 2 Protoss players and asked him a few questions about Starcraft. Aleksey "White-Ra" Krupnyk was kind enough to share some of his time to help answer my questions, as I try to discover his thoughts and “special tactics” in the game of Starcraft.
For those of you who don't know him, White-Ra is from Ukraine and started playing games in 1999. He started playing Starcraft and Broodwars, to then switch over to Starcraft 2 for 13 years. Now he is playing Heart Of The Swarm.
Thanks White-Ra for the Pictures
Editor's note: we decided not to edit White-Ra's English, because well... it's white-ra.
What would you consider your greatest moment in your life that you were able to do in Starcraft be?
White-Ra: My greatest achievement in my life was beating Boxer on Tv game in Starcraft at Korea. It was my first greatest moment, I not won money, but I was able to gain a lot of respect from Koreans and outside Korean sc fans, since it was my goal and dream to play with Boxer and beat Boxer.
Was Boxer your Favorite player?
White-Ra: Yeah, because by the time I started playing Starcraft, Boxer had already had many championships and most respectful pro-gamer and most popular in e-sport.
What is special about your play style that you believe that stands out from other Protoss players?
White-Ra: I like to more creative games and I like to play more macro games, not really like using all-in strategies, because if it doesn’t work, it’s hard to win. So I just like creative games and make surprise opening.
What is the next tournament you're preparing for?
White-Ra: I’m currently preparing for Intel Extreme Master at Singapore; I was able to take a spot and help represent my country at this event.
How well did you do at IEM Singapore Qualifier?
White-Ra: I lost to many zergs in the tournament, but I was able to take the final spot in an match between Grubby, 2-1.
What do you think about the current match up for Protoss in Wings of Liberty so far?
White-Ra: I think that TvP is pretty balance now, because of Terran has many ways, harass Protoss and play macro game. At the same time, Protoss has a really good chance in macro game in beating Terran, if protecting Terran and not letting Terran harass mineral lines or kill some buildings, like using a lot drops. PvP is random, it’s a little random, but still it’s much more better than PvZ. I think PvZ, Zerg is better than Protoss and Terran. Because of Infesters, almost all Zerg now abusing infesters and it’s not really good for e-sports. So I think that Zerg are a little bit ahead.
Do you think it’s because of the Infesters, Broodlord composition that make Zerg match-ups hard for Protoss?
White-Ra: I see many times with pro-players that have no problem beating this combo. I tried everything all the time, even if Protoss is ahead and you can lose battle, just Zerg can crush your army. Only one way is to use very good vortex. But if you play very good opening, he will always be ready for it and can steal your mothership and use silent vortex on your own units, then there no chance to take the game.
Have you ever thought about using Star-Tale Parting Immortal and Sentry push against Zerg?
White-Ra: Yeah of course I tried, make Immortal push as one of my build orders. But now Zerg is learning how to hold this push. They just stop building a lot of workers and make more units, by making extra units and attacking from two sides. Ahead and Behind and it’s almost no chance to hold Zerg units.
Do you still believe the Protoss Forge opening is still good against Zerg?
White-Ra: I think it’s not bad, but what kind of Protoss not have chance. If an gateway expand makes it very easy for Zerg , because it gives Zerg more macro advantage. Second Nexus will be ready too late.
What would you believe is Protoss' greatest strength and weakness in Wings of Liberty at the moment?
White-Ra: I think warpgate will give Protoss advantage, because you can warp reinforcement almost in battle. The disadvantage for Protoss would be not having the upgrade for energy. The amulet would be when players don’t have energy. Upgrade on extra energy is a disadvantage.
What would you consider you’re hardest match up in Wings of Liberty be?
White-Ra: My hardest matchup is PvZ.
What would you think is the best unit in the game?
Is there any reason you stuck with Protoss in Wings of Liberty instead of switching to any other race? What makes Protoss special to you?
White-Ra: I been experience with Protoss, I’m just a fighter and keep fighting. I believe of what Blizzard not to not make changes and community to like this race. Because this race has many technical stuff, like high tech race and because they like high tech technology.
What are your current thoughts about the new units in Heart of the Swarm beta?
White-Ra: I like more of Protoss units more, Mama Core. Because new units help you protect your base and same time gives units chance to harass opening in the beginning or you can go keep new army alive, by go interrupt and make recall back to nexus.
What is your most favorite unit in Heart of the swarm beta?
White-Ra: Umm… it’s hard to say now. Maybe it’s the Swarm Host? Zerg units, because Zerg use right Swarm Host is very powerful. And I also like how the Swarm Host moves, because it looks so funny.
Do you enjoy playing Heart of the Swarm Beta more or Wings of Liberty?
White-Ra: I have a lot of fun playing Heart of Swarm, because here it’s a bit little easy to play PvZ. And more “special tactics” more strategy and more units and more fun. So I like Hots more.
Are you currently enjoying the changes of the Oracle?
White-Ra: I think less change is much better, because now Oracle you can use not only as and harass opening and you can use it as unit support and Time Warp can help you a lot in big battle.
Time-Warp doesn’t work on Air unit’s right?
White-Ra: Yeah it doesn’t work on Air units, but most of the games, your opening is ground army. For example, if Zergs using Infesters and Broodlords composition, you can use time-warp and not let Infesters come close and use a lot of fungal.
What do you believe should be changed in Heart of the Swarm at the current state?
White-Ra: I want to see balance, close balance in this game. I think our unit race must get really good harass opening, that kills mineral lines and high tech units and many interesting and useful spell. Not spell like Phoenix plus two range, nobody but use it.
Would you think the Oracle fills the position of a harass unit?
White-Ra: Yeah it’s very good, because you can try to kill some building, but of course, it’s not enough for harassing, because of the open mineral line.
Would the Dark Templar be consider a better harass unit?
White-Ra: DT is only if your opening is not expect it, there is also too much investment in DT. If you don’t make enough damage, you’re too behind and it will be dangerous for opening attacking and not have enough army protection, because you spent a lot of money on investment money on dark shrine and twilight council and DT.
Is it difficult to use the new beta units as Protoss?
White-Ra: I feel now that it’s not difficult to use, maybe for young players its not easy to use Oracle, because with units not fighting and you need a lot of APM and spell for using this unit.
How about using the Tempest?
White-Ra: Tempest is very easy, but you need to always want to show the target, because if Zerg has Broodlords and Infesters making a lot of infested marines, the Tempest will not be shooting the Broodlords and try to shoot first the infested marines. So it needs to be better on targeting of units.
Any words of wisdom you wish to pass on to newcomers who might be playing protoss? Tips? Or “Special Tactics” that can help them improve?
White-Ra: Yeah of course, make more timing push with your play with Zerg in Wings of Liberty. Just enjoy your race, try to use our Protoss high tech stuff, Warp Prism, Sentry, Colossus and stalker combo and maybe sometimes Mothership, it’s really fun and can be really strong.
Did you enjoy your time playing in Xel Naga trials for the Red bull event? Would you ever enter in another event just like the Xel Naga Trials?
White-Ra: I enjoyed it, just too much fun. Sometimes it’s not too fair, but I enjoyed Team Liquid Attack much more, because there isn’t any nuclear attack on mineral lines.
If you could play another game which game would it be?
White-Ra: Hard to say but maybe some RTS game, I also like shuters but RTS more, you need more thinking here and this allows your brain to work constantly.
If you could change any part of Starcraft, would there be anything you really wish that could be changed or fixed or even added in Starcraft?
White-Ra: Yeah of course, fix Infesters or maybe remove Infester marines spell from game and it would be really close balance.
Would High Templar still be consider good against Infester?
White-Ra: Now no, because when you try, Protoss can’t make many High Templar, because it needs good macro and many gas. But Zerg can lose Infesters and maybe make 12 or 20 or 25 new Infesters. And do, if you use feedback, not have energy to feedback again. Protoss can’t make enough Templar’s, maybe 4 or 5 or 6 same time.
What are your future plans in the pro-gaming scene and are you still going to be part of the scene in 10 years from now?
White-Ra: Yeah, just try to play and enjoy my time and continue to gain support from fans and community, I’ll still try to stay in e-sports.
Are there any last words you wish to say to all your fans in Starcraft? Is there any one you wish to give a shout out too? Where do we follow you?
White-Ra: I want to thank my fans and community for the support and really respect all those people and thank Tt-esports and Playhem for sponsor me and support too. You can follow me on twitter @WhiteRaSC or watch my stream on twitchtv. Also you can follow me on facebook and my youtube channel.