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Opening Moves: Learning from the Pros

Opening Moves: Learning from the Pros

In any game of strategy, the opening moves are often the most crucial. A good opening can help a player or team establish a strong board position, provide protection for key units, or perhaps put early pressure on an opponent. Opening moves in games like Go and chess have been studied extensively for hundreds of years, and a wealth of knowledge is available for those who want to learn.

Though esports are relatively new compared to these ancient games, there is still much to be learned about the deep strategies involved at the highest levels of play. As such, we’ve teamed up with professional players from all five of Blizzard Entertainment’s esports franchises to discuss the opening moves and strategies they use to win.

Heroes of the Storm


The 4-1 Split, Everything You Need To Know

How to split your heroes efficiently into lanes, especially on two-lane battlegrounds.

How to Know If You'll Win the Level 1 Fight

Sizing up your opponent's team and determining if brawling at Level 1 will go in your favor.

When, Where, and Why You Should Cheese a Tower Early

An alternate strategy some choose to employ by which you take an opponent's tower for an early-game advantage.

5v5 Mid, Why Do We Do This to Ourselves?

Learn why players tend to head into a 5v5 brawl in the middle lane, even during HGC matches.

The Chinese Bush Meta

The value and history of using the fog of war to your advantage, and tips for how to deal with it.

StarCraft II


Using the Map Advantage

Top-level players discuss how they look at maps when planning for a match.

Plotting Out the Matchup

High-level players detail how they go into a match when looking at their opponent’s race.

Getting Cheesy

A look at cheese strategies by top-level players of the game.

Keeping Out the Enemy

Players talk about building their base thoughtfully to reduce enemy opportunity.

Scouting for Valuable Intel

Pro players talk about the importance of scouting and how they handle this important part of StarCraft II.



Dropping the Hammer

A closer look at Fragi’s freakishly quick Earthshatter.

London’s Lunar Colony Lockout

Spitfire’s coach talks us through how to set up an unbreakable defense.

Navigating the Pirate Ship

Breaking down Junkertown's most popular attack strategy.

Doomfist on Dorado

LA Gladiators DPS Hydration shares insight on an unusual strategy.

First-Point Defense Picks

The most commonly chosen initial team comps on defense, why pros pick them, and why they work.



Win Conditions

Professional players teach us how to navigate the beginning of a game.

Filling a Deck

Fleshing out your full 30-card deck.


A guide on how to mulligan effectively.

Ahead or Behind

The art of playing to win, whether you're in the lead or catching up.

Those First 5 Turns

How do you get through your first five turns?

World of Warcraft


Before the Gates Open

There's a lot to consider before a game of WoW Arena even begins.

Preparing the Front

Don't stand in the fire. Or there. And definitely not there...

Balancing the Cooldown Equation

Tips for not wasting your most important abilities in the Arena.

Mixing it Up

Mastering the art of target-swapping.

Win, Lose, Improve

In WoW Arena, the best lessons often come from defeat.

Thanks for reading! Hopefully these guides will help you take your game to the next level. Also, look out for #MidgameWeek later this year!

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