The Mechanics Fallacy

Already Playing StarCraft

From Day[9]:

There’s an illusion I want to dispel right now, that in Brood War, you need to master your mechanics before you get to really play the game. There’s this idea that if you practice for three months, you’ll have your mechanics down, and then you get to play the strategy portion. This is totally false. If you watch any fucking pro play, literally Flash, Jaedong, Bisu, Stork – the four best players of all time – stuff is going wrong all the time. All the time. They’re losing track of dropships and missing macro back at home and they have a geyser with one dude in it and they forget to expand. Stuff is going wrong all the time because it’s hard to be a commander. So if you’re sitting there thinking, “Aw man, I can’t wait to get good at the mechanics so I can play StarCraft,” I want you to know, you’re playing StarCraft right now.

I’ve been following Day[9] for ten years and this is the most profound thing I’ve ever heard him say, so I’m going to give it a name. This is the Mechanics Fallacy – the idea that you have to be good at all mechanical aspects of the game before you are really playing it.

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