Tricks, Glitches and Exploits
Be warned that some of these tricks and glitches can be illegal in some tournaments (exploits are always illegal).
The icon next to the title means the race that can perform it.
- 1 Tricks
- 2 Glitches
- 2.1 Stacking workers
- 2.2 Plague on Interceptor
- 2.3 Sunken colonies with infinite range
- 2.4 Disable Missile Turret
- 2.5 Hold Lurker
- 2.6 Faster Units
- 2.7 Medic Hold can't be pushed
- 2.8 Recall Glitch
- 2.9 Cloak Burrowable Units
- 2.10 Build Cloaked Zerg Buildings
- 2.11 Selection Glitch
- 3 Exploits
- 4 Videos
A trick is a game mechanic that has been used (or abused) in an unintended manner.
A Terran player places Spider Mines and proceeds to ally the opponent player. When the opponent moves his army over the mines, the player then unallies the opponent. The mines then acquire enemy targets as intended.
A player constructs a Pylon or other structure in the enemy's mineral line to prevent smooth flow of resources and potentially trap some workers, slowing down the opponent's economy.
More info in the liquipedia article: Manner Pylon.
A player uses a transport to unload units above a Spider Mine field. The single unit will attract all nearby mines and the splash damage will kill all the other mines or units that may be nearby. It is possible to load the unit as the mines explode to avoid taking damage while still accomplishing the purpose.
When a Terran building lands over an Interceptor, the Interceptor will be destroyed. This was overlooked but not necessarily a glitch since the Interceptor meets all the "getting crushed" requirements. Despite Blizzard knowing this for a long time, it has remained in the game.
A player can not use Hold Position on worker units normally, but when selected in a group this can be done. A glitch can also allow Terran Flying Buildings to patrol, and some other things like Larva Trick.
When a group of air units are selected and moved, they normally move to a location relative to its current location, instead of stacked at the same target location. When another unit is selected in the group (from far away), this behaviour is nullified and the units then move to the exact position clicked by the mouse cursor.
Burrowing Lurkers on top of one another to attack as one. Burrow each lurker on top of each other one by one by moving onto the previous burrowed lurker, repeat as necessary. It is best used in combination with 'Hold Lurker' for ambushes or on top of ramps/cliffs.
When a Zerg Drone constructs an Extractor or other structure, the supply count will decrease, allowing the creation of more units. The player can then cancel the structures to retrieve their drones, bypassing the maximum supply.
A unit can be "pushed" to hop over obstacles using several different mechanics. This can be abused to hop over obstacles such as walls.
- Using Workers - In any match up, a worker can be used in conjunction with any unit to push it through minerals. The unit that wants to be pressed through should move towards the minerals, and once it is in position, a worker unit should be told to mine the minerals, and once it is over the unit that wants to be pressed through, the worker should be told to stop mining. Since two units are on top of each other, the units will try to separate themselves. During this process, the player should constantly tell the units to move past the minerals.
- Using Buildings - A Protoss player can glitch a probe through minerals by having a probe mine minerals, then building a pylon that will cause the probe to jump past the minerals. Then the pylon will be cancelled to save money.
- Using Landing Terran Buildings - Landing a Terran building then moving units beneath it before it finished landing.
- Using Add-ons - Simply have a Factory, Starport or Science Facility in place as shown in the picture. Place a unit close to the minerals and on the spot where the add-on will be. Place the add-on and simply right-click the unit past the Mineral Line.
- Using Burrow - This trick does not require a worker unit or minerals. It can only be done by Zerg. Tell two units to burrow on top of each other next to the area where they should be pressed through. Then, tell both units to unburrow at the same time, and constantly tell both units to move past the obstruction.
- Using Spells - When vultures lay mines they can be pushed through buildings.
More detailed instructions here:
This trick is constantly used by all players. It is basically telling workers to mine a mineral patch or vespene geyser. They will then proceed to walk past all units until told to stop.
If you have really fast reaction time, you can give a command to place the second spider mine somewhere beneath the first one, on which cast the vulture will most of the time change its path. More info here.
Also known as a game bug, it is a situation or event that the game's programming clearly did not account for and is usually unintended.
This glitch allows worker units to remain permanently stacked while moving and attacking.
When an Interceptor is plagued and damaged, it will return to the Carrier to repair itself. Once the interceptor receives its one-time repair, the plague causes damage, and the damaged interceptor will "leave and return" to the carrier in the same frame. Since the repair only occurs when an interceptor from outside enters the Carrier, it becomes stuck in an infinite loop, attempted to return to the Carrier even though it did not completely exit.
If a Sunken changes its target before ending the "pre-attack" sequence it doesn't check the range. More info here.
When a turret targets an air unit at the exact same position, the turret may be unable to reach the angle needed to fire missiles and get stuck. This is usually achieved by placing an Observer over an under construction Missile Turret and holding the position. The owner of the turret can press Stop until the head of the turret faces north. The attack angle requirement will be met and the turret will continue to fire.
Lurkers can be hindered from attacking permanently. This can be done with two different ways: the lurkers are ordered to attack a structure under the fog of war or get a hold position command when grouped with an overlord. Even if units come into range the lurkers will not attack.
More info in the liquipedia article: Hold Lurker.
When two units with a speed upgrade (or stimmed Terran infantry) collide when trying to pass each other, they will sometimes pass the other in the same direction, leading them all the way to the edge of the map or until they hit something. This is abnormal because they are twice as fast as they would be if they just moved there normally. This is mostly seen with Zerglings, Hydralisks, and Zealots.
When a Medic uses Hold Position, the medic will not move from its location, even if they are stacked or pushed by other units. You could order a structure to land, move a Medic under it, and order that Medic to Hold Position. It will never be pushed out.
Recall has a very special property which nullifies some unit proximity checks for a single frame if the exit is blocked. This can cause various side effects such as:
- Worker units will gather or return a resource from anywhere on the map.
- Units can completely recharge their shields from anywhere on the map (when moving to a Shield Battery).
- A SCV's terrain collision will be disabled when moving to finish construction on a structure.
- Queens will teleport to infest a Command Center.
For this glitch, you need an Arbiter and any burrowing Zerg units. Set the Arbiter on patrol over a short area back and forth over where the units are cloaked and away to a point where they uncloak. Now, burrow the units uncloaked. Wait until the Arbiter comes to the point where the units would just be cloaking and unburrow. These units should stay cloaked permanently, unless you bring them back near the Arbiter or if you burrow and unburrow them again.
You must first use the Cloak Burrowable Units glitch on a drone. Then, simply use the drone to build a building. This works for all buildings EXCEPT: Hatcheries, Creep Colonies, and Extractors.
This is a precursor to several other glitches. It allows you to control units with a different unit selected. For example, you can have a ghost selected, but when you order it to move, it moves a wraith. The two units (or groups of units) involved are determined by you. In the following steps, source unit refers to the unit you will have selected, and target unit is the unit that you will actually be controlling.
- Select source(selected) unit
- Save to hotkey 1
- Select target(controlled) unit
- Save to hotkey 1 and recall hotkey 1 within 4 frames (or whatever your network frame delay happens to be).
This can be used for several other glitches. Note that this glitch was accidentally patched in BWAPI. It is used to perform commands that are normally only possible through exploits, and restricted in BWAPI.
Use the selection glitch with two flag beacons of the same type, and you can place (and replace) one of them an infinite number of times (or until the flag spawn timer runs out).
Use the selection glitch with one of your factories selected, and the enemy factory controlled. Then set a rally point. Your enemy's rally point will change. Note that the enemy's structure doesn't get hotkeyed, but this doesn't matter since it was the last selection you made.
Use the selection glitch with one of your burrowed units selected, and one or more unburrowed lurkers controlled. You can issue the unburrow order and the lurkers will play the unburrow animation, even when already unburrowed.
An exploit is a glitch that must be performed intentionally (it cannot happen by accident). It is usually initiated using a hack to execute actions that are not available to the human user interface.
The player lands a Terran building, and it moves ("slides") while on the ground to another destination without needing to Lift Off (for example, sliding a Command Center closer to minerals than allowable).
To perform, lift off the CC and order it to land on a valid location, then hold shift and press S followed by a right-click on the location you want it to slide to. The CC stops sliding if colliding with any solid material.
Only works on version 1.04 and lower.
A few patches ago, Blizzard had "fixed" the tank under a building bug. However, little know that it is possible when sieged EXACTLY as the Building becomes registered as a ground unit.
The player trains a unit and lifts off in the same frame. The lifted building retains the unit in the queue. When ordered to land, the unit starts being constructed. When right clicking as the building is landed, the building will lift off once more while still constructing the unit (which will be created where the building lifted off from). This allows, for example, a player to land a Factory in the opponent's base and construct a Siege Tank without needing to build a Machine Shop.
The flying drones and templar glitch allows drones and templar to act like air units. This essentially means that drones can take an island expansion without drop tech and templar can storm worker lines without the use of shuttles.
Only works on version 1.10 and lower.
Controlling a Nuke
A.K.A. "Godly Nuke", "Nuke Hack" or "Nuke Anywhere". This exploit allows a player (with the assistance of an external program) to stop a Nuclear Missile from launching (or landing), and move it around like a regular unit. The player can then proceed to re-launch the nuke at any location on the map (without the need for vision or a nearby ghost). When the nuke lands and deals damage, the nuke death animation can be interrupted and the same nuke can be re-launched infinite times.
Flooding the Order Buffer
The player sends commands with the assistance of an external program in such a way that they are queued in a ridiculous order, preventing any new orders from being executed. This causes all units to stop moving, as well as other major effects such as units unable to execute the "die" command, resulting in 0 hit point unkillable units, or the "cancel" command, but still being refunded the resources. Cancelling a Zerg Extractor will also refund several drones along with resources.