3-Gate Dark Templar (PvT)

[e][h] Dark Templar Fast Expand (vs. Terran)
Strategy Information


A rush to Twilight Council, on two Assimilators followed by two extra Gateways. The choices are Dark Shrine, Charge or Blink. Sacrificing early army, unless Zealot-heavy, three Dark Templar can have the opposing player struggling to wall-off the main and try and squeeze out detection as fast as possible.


A Dark Templar fast expansion aims to punish early pressure and opposing fast expand builds from the opponent lacking mobile detection. Dark Templar should be split up to force more area for detection cover and maximize damage. Afterwards, Dark Templar can merge into Archon and attack with a Zealot/Archon timing attack before the opposing forces as time to recover from the harassment.

Basic Build Order[edit]

Basic Build


  • Dark Templar should be ready to warp in with the second round of Warpgate, Chronoboost if necessary.
  • Proxy one of the Pylons before your Dark Shrine finishes (the 23 or 30 Pylon) near their base so you can warp in the DTs immediately after the Dark Shrine finishes. Keep a probe around the opposing player
  • Place your Twilight Council and Dark Shrine away from your Nexus and choke so they are unlikely to be scouted.
  • If you feel that there is an incoming all-in, save one warp-in for a DT at your base.


  • Scout for early tier 1.5/2 units like Marauder/Roach or Siege Tank/Banshee. These are sure signs of incoming pressure, and chronoboosting Warpgates for more army is needed.
  • Signs of an all-in: 3 Barracks, 1/1/1, 6 Barracks with no addons, 2 Starports
  • Signs of a tech path (i.e. multiple Factories)


  • Transitions well to a standard Archon/chargelot mid/late game. Get charge, and make sure to upgrade well.

Countered By[edit]

Hard Counters[edit]

  • 2 Starport Banshees
  • Marine/Raven/Tank push

Soft Counters[edit]

  • Fast Raven play
  • Can outright lose to early pressure builds


Send a few DTs to your opponent's main as you expand and tech up. Make sure to split the DTs so you can force as many scans as possible. As you do this add warpgates and start to tech up.


2 Starport[edit]

When you scout a two Starports, either make an Archon and some cannons for detection, or some Stalkers with a robo.


If you see a Marine/Raven/Tank push, try to get as many Zealots as you can and do your best to snipe the Raven. If you can, try to flank.

Standard Play[edit]

This usually includes a reactored Starport and many Barracks. You can either get charge and do a two Archon timing attack with chargelots, or you can delay charge for a robo to get observers. In the latter case, you would transition to late game play with chargelots, blink Stalkers, Immortals, and Archons.

6 Barracks[edit]

You should outright win if you split your DTs. They should do huge damage which will win you the game. If/when he attacks, retreat your army and let DTs clean up.

Mech Play[edit]

If you scout mech play, go light on Archons and quickly get chargelots and continuously produce Immortals from a Robotics Facility. Colossus, added in later, can be very good.


Pro features[edit]

Maps that encourage fast expansions are favorable to this build, as well as maps with shorter natural-to-natural rush distances. In the current map pool, this can be applied to Xel'Naga Caverns or Tal'Darim Altar.

Con features[edit]

This build is not especially map specific and is generally very safe. However, cross-positions can hinder your build.



http://www.gomtv.net/2011gslsponsors2/vod/62509 Game 1 and 3