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Speedling Expand

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[e][h]ZergSpeedling Expand
Strategy Information
ZvP, ZvT
Popularized by:


This build is a safe, all-around build that allows you to be very aggressive against an opponent opening with Hatchery First. It sacrifices a bit of economy in favour of a faster Tech to Metabolic Boost, which will allow you to exploit the timing when you have Metabolic Boost and your opponent has not. This build is usually followed by an expansion as you push toward your opponent's base, but an early Baneling Nest can turn this build into a powerful all-in if unexpected.


Build enough Zergling units to deny natural base blocks and feint an Early Bust attempt. Metabolic Boost is researched to take map control, watch the opposing army movements, or poke in for scouting.

Basic Build Order[edit]

Speedling Expand
  1. Pull Drones off gas (or not), see Notes


  • If you do not plan to all-in and your opponent opened Hatchery First, you should pull two Drones off gas.
  • If you do not plan to all-in and your opponent matched your Speedling Expand, you can pull Drones or not, depending on how confident you are that you could hold a Zergling/Baneling all-in. Should you opt to pull Drones off gas, you should consider building a Spine Crawler at your Natural
  • If you plan to all-in or at least put heavy pressure on your opponent, do not pull Drones off gas.


  • Try to scout for your opponent's gas timing: at the earliest, he or she will have Metabolic Boost 3:15 minutes after planting down the first extractor.


  • Make sure to have your Zerglings near your opponent's base just before Metabolic Boost finished, so that you can fully exploit this timing.
  • If you go for a Zergling/Baneling Pressure:
    • It is sometimes a good idea to split two or three Zerglings away from the battle and morph them into Banelings in your opponent's base to surprise your opponent and maybe kill a large number of Drones.
    • Always move-command your Banelings, never attack move! Similarly, you ideally want to manually detonate your Banelings when a large number of enemy Zerglings are around.
    • Keep your Banelings spread out! It only takes two Banelings to kill a pack of Banelings, so be careful!


Replays & VODs[edit]

Norway Zerg Snute Ladder Game, Snute opens with a 14/14 against Zenio's Hatchery First, and performs a Baneling all-in.
South Korea Zerg Zenio
Date: 2012-08-17
Patch: 1.5.2 Replay
Germany Zerg TLO Ladder Game, Min opens with a 14/14 against TLO's Hatchery First.
South Korea Zerg Min
Date: 2012-08-08
Patch: 1.5.2 Replay