5 Hatch before Gas (vs. Protoss)

From Liquipedia StarCraft Brood War Wiki
This article may require copy editing for grammar, style, cohesion, tone or spelling. You can assist by editing it now.
[e][h]Zerg5 Hatch Before Gas (vs. Protoss)
Strategy Information
Popularized by:


In contrast to the popular 3 Hatch Spire into 5 Hatch Hydra, this build completely ignores early teching in favor of earlier Hatcheries and Drones. As a result, you will deal with most Protoss openings with Hydralisks instead of Spire tech. Your midgame economy will be much stronger than usual, which will allow you to add on additional Hatcheries rapidly.

This build is very strong against the popular Neo Bisu Build, involving 2 Gateways worth of Zealots and 1 Stargate worth of Corsairs. Without early Templar tech, the Protoss is incapable of defending against your slightly earlier Hydralisk production.

Basic Build Order[edit]

5 Hatch before Gas
  • 9 Overlord
  • 9 Spawning Pool
  • 11 Hatchery, scout
  • 10 Six Zerglings[1]
  • 13 Hatchery at your second natural[2]
  • 17 Overlord
  • 18 Hatchery in your natural for sim city
  • 27 Hatchery in your second natural for sim city
  • 26 Extractor
  • 25 Extractor
  • 24 Two Overlords
  • @50 Gas - Hydralisk Den
  • @100 Gas - Lair
  • @100% Hydralisk Den - Hydralisk Speed
  • @100% Lair - Overlord Speed
  • @100% Hydralisk Speed - Hydralisk Range
  • @100% Hydralisk Range - Lurker Upgrade
  1. If the Protoss decides to pressure with 3 early Zealots or 2 Zealots and a Dragoon, you will be forced to make four more Zerglings before you place your fifth Hatchery. If Protoss does not pressure, avoid making any additional Zerglings.
  2. Avoid placing your third Hatchery until you scout the Protoss opening. If Protoss is not going for a fast expand, place your third Hatchery at your natural for sim city and transition into a different build. See the Adaptation section for details

This is a variant of the original build order from LRM)Game. The original build order consisted of no Drone scout and 8 Zerglings instead of 6. It also consisted of not delaying the third base and cancelling it if Protoss does a 2 Gateway Opening. This build cuts Drone production for a brief period to avoid needing to cancel the third Hatchery vs a 2 Gateway Opening.


After you place your fifth Hatchery, you must immediately make the two Extractors. Because of your delayed gas, you must make sure your Hydralisk upgrades are constant.

Because you do not have Mutalisks to deal with early Zealots, you must rely on Sim-City and sometimes Sunken Colonies to defend. There is a small window before all five Hatcheries begin producing constant Hydralisks where you are vulnerable.

You do not have Mutalisks to snipe High Templar, so you must rely on tactics with your Hydralisks. Position ~8 Hydralisks behind a moving Protoss army and snipe High Templar. Be careful not to commit too many units to this or you will whittle down your own army. Do not engage a Protoss army head on unless you have sniped a sufficient number of High Templar. Make sure your Lurkers are coming out on time or you can easily get run over.


1 Base Protoss[edit]

If scouted, place your 3rd Hatchery at your natural for sim city and then take your gas and add tech. Take your third only when you have an army to defend it and be prepared to build Sunken Colonies aggressively in response to a Protoss Gateway push.

Early Stargate into Templar Tech[edit]

Make only a few Hydralisks to hold off the Corsairs. Making more does not serve any purpose, as early attacks will be shut down by storm. Make a few more rounds of Drones and then start Hydralisk production.

If Protoss takes a fast third you have two options. You can flood with Hydralisks to try to prevent the third, or you can ignore it and quickly take a fourth. Only try to bust it if the Zealot count is low and you are confident in your storm dodging.

Early Stargate with mass Corsair into Templar Tech[edit]

Make ~18 Hydralisks to hold off the Corsairs. Send Zerglings to scout all possible expansion locations . If you see that Protoss isn't expanding, expect a mass Zealot followup. If Protoss does expand, add on a few more Hydralisks and take a fourth base. Alternatively, you can try to mass Hydralisks and shut down the third. However, if you lose your Hydralisks to storm, your Overlords will be exposed.

Early Stargate into 2-4 Gate Zealot[edit]

You will most likely need to build 1-2 Sunken Colonies at your natural and third versus this build. Flood Hydralisks as soon as your Hydralisk Den finishes. Once you have held off the attack and have a comfortable number of Hydralisks, you can push out. If Protoss didn't switch to Templar tech fast enough or built a good number of cannons, you can end the game here. If Protoss took a third and has no cannons or High Templar there, kill it. If Protoss took a third and has cannons or High Templar there, do not try to break it as you will likely lose your units for no gain. Instead, switch back to Drone production and take a fourth while containing. If Protoss didn't try to take a third but has cannons or High Templar in their natural, switch back to Drone production and take a fourth while containing.

Early Stargate with mass Corsair and 2gate mass Zealot (Neo Bisu Build)[edit]

Make two Sunken Colonies at your natural and third and flood Hydralisks. Because High Templar are very delayed, you can win in this situation simply by attacking once you have a large enough Hydralisk force. Make sure you bring your Overlords in the attack so spawning Dark Templar do not force you back.

Early Stargate with mass Corsair and Reaver[edit]

Keep at least six Hydralisks at each base to defend, do not move these unless the Shuttle has died.

Double Early Stargate[edit]

Flood Hydralisks and attack the Protoss right away. They should not have sufficient units to defend, and you should be able to break them.

No Stargate 4gate Speedzeal[edit]

Make 2-3 Sunken Colonies at your natural and third and flood Hydralisks. Make sure to thoroughly scout the map with Overlords. You need to check if Protoss is taking a third or adding on more Gateways. If Protoss continues adding on Gateways, do not Drone up and do not take a fourth. Focus on units and getting Lurkers out as soon as possible. If Protoss takes a fast third, you can either mass Hydralisks and try to bust it, or Drone up and wait for Lurkers to take a fourth.

Late Game[edit]

Because of your excellent midgame economy, you can afford a large number of Hatcheries. On four well-saturated bases, you can afford to produce Hydralisks, Zerglings, and Lurkers off of 10 Hatcheries with room to continue expanding and teching. Because of your high Hatchery count, it is a bad idea to quickly switch to Ultralisks, as many of the Hatcheries will have idle Larva.


Pro features[edit]

A close third. Against early Zealots, you will need to be able to quickly reinforce from one base to another.

Con features[edit]

A far third.


Whiteout South Korea Zerg EffOrt ASL 7, Ro16, Group A. 5 Hatch before Gas vs Gateway expand. EffOrt has to build extra Zerglings to hold off Zealot pressure early.
South Korea Protoss Guemchi
Date: 2019-02-10
Patch: VOD