4 Warpgate Rush (Legacy of the Void)
The 4 Warpgate Rush, often referred to colloquially as the "4 Gate", is an aggressive opening most commonly used in PvP. Since Adept are strong in PvT, too, this build should work there as well. Due to the way that the Warpgate mechanic works, this build will allow you to produce a large burst of units in or around your opponent's base very early in the game, which will give you a good chance of killing the opponent if they weren't prepared for the rush. The build is an all-in as it is difficult to transition out of it without dealing very heavy damage to the economy of the opponent. The reason for this is that constant unit production from four Warpgates allows no resources for an expansion or additional tech.
Even though it is strong again in LotV, most modern PvP openings don't actively take the 4 Gate into account. An early FE often struggles against this build. This means that a 4 Gate can still be used successfully against an unprepared opponent who fails to scout that it is coming as the 4 Gate rush is incredibly strong if it goes unscouted by an opponent who is trying to either tech-up or expand too quickly. Do note, however, that the 4 Gate is still a dominant PvP strategy on maps where Force Fields cannot be used to deflect or delay the rush or where Adepts can abuse their Psionic Transfer.
The 4 Gate relies heavily on the use of proxy Pylons to produce reinforcements as close to the opponent's base as possible. Keep in mind, you have to build at least one Gateway near the proxy Pylon. This is the key to the attack and if you are unable to place a proxy Pylon+Gate then it is highly likely that your rush will be deflected with ease.
Basic Build Order
This build has to do damage.
- When you start Warpgate Research, boost it until you build Blink
- KiWiKaKi scouts immediatly after his 2nd Gate
- PvT: If the Terran has a Bunker use Psionic Transfer to bypass it
The execution of this build, especially in terms of the units you'll want to build, varies greatly dependent on the match-up.
Protoss players generally want to target fire enemy Stalkers with their own Stalkers at all times, as whoever has the greater number of Stalkers will have an advantage in terms of micro-management potential. However, the 4 Gating Protoss may opt for a high number of Zealots if they are trying to charge up a ramp that their opponent is defending with ranged units, which is because the Zealots will force the opponent to move their ranged units away from the ramp.
If you choose to use this build against a Zerg opponent, only prioritize Stalkers if you come up against Roaches or a heavy investment in Spine Crawlers. Otherwise, you will want to prioritize Adepts in order to deal with Zerglings.
Utilising a two gas 4 Gate allows you to use more Sentries in your composition at the cost of Stalkers. The advantage of this is that it will allow you to block Zerg reinforcements by Force Fielding their main ramp; it also allows you to use Force Fields to trap Roaches against Zealots so that they cannot kite away from the Zealots, and to create artificial chokes for your units versus high numbers of Zerglings.
Aim to do significant economic damage by killing Drones, Queens, and the natural expansion. It is okay to accept losses to destroy a Hatchery, a tech building, or a number of Drones that are equal in cost to the units sacrificed to kill them.
If you manage to kill the natural expansion of the Zerg, do not over commit if the Zerg has their main base heavily defended. Don't be afraid to take an expansion in this situation as Zerg is at a large disadvantage if they have less bases than the Protoss player. In this situation, it can also be a good idea to set up a Force Field contain to delay the Zerg from retaking their natural expansion whilst you get your own set up.
No matter which variation you use, be careful of Zerglings sniping your Pylon or counter-attacking into your main-base. It is often a good idea to fully wall-in your main base with an additional Pylon when you move out to place down proxy Pylons as Zergling run-bys will very quickly lose you the game.
Every Reaper FE take the 4 Gate rush into account, so it's important that the Terran doesn't know that you're rushing them. If they manage to work it out, then they should be able to make extra Bunkers at either their natural choke or the top of their main ramp, and you will never be able to break a Terran with >3 repaired Bunkers whilst using this all-in.
You'll generally want to use Adepts, Zealots and Sentries in your attack. If you can trap Terran units against the Zealots using Force Fields then the Zealots will make short work of them, especially if they're underneath a Guardian Shield. Force Fields can also be used to prevent the Terran from repairing Bunkers (or other structures), which will make it much easier to bust through their defences.
If you see 3 Bunkers or more, or 2 Bunkers that already have SCVs ready to repair them, then it means the Terran is on to you and that you'll have no chance of breaking them. You should either abandon your rush and take an expansion, spending as much Chrono Boost on Probes as possible in order to catch-up with the Terran, or try to run beyond the Bunkers if the Terran doesn't have a complete wall-off. In a run-by situation, Stalkers are better than Zealots due to their better mobility, but you still want to have a mixed composition of Zealots and Stalkers when running past the Bunkers.
If the opponent is building Marauders then try to focus them down first; this is as the Concussive Shells upgrade prevents your Stalkers from cost-effectively kiting against Marines.
Since the Warpgate mechanic allows you to create units anywhere that you have a proxy Pylon+Warpgate, rush distances aren't an important factor for this build. Instead, this build relies more on how safe your opponent is playing and how well prepared they are for your attack.
On ramps that can be easily walled-off (PvT) or blocked with a single Force Field (PvP), you will have massive problems winning with this strategy against an opponent who scouts that it is coming and knows how to defend.
Replays and VODs
|KiWiKaKi||This build was played with a different Patch and it is slightly different. KiWiKaKi harasses with two Adepts and plays a 4Gate as transition. He kills Heart in under 5 minutes.|
- LowKo explains how he struggles against this build. Goblin (Protoss) plays it with only one Gas.
- NeoBlade explains the build while MC is executing it.