Starcraft 2 Mutalisk Rush

The Mutalisk is a powerful Zerg flying unit with a robust 120 hit points and a decent attack that hits both air and ground units. As a result, the Starcraft 2 Mutalisk rush has become a very popular strategy.

The idea is to produce Mutalisks as fast as possible in order to take out the enemy before he can build a lot of anti-air units. Unlike other air rushes, the Starcraft 2 Mutalisk rush does not hinge on getting air units before the enemy gets anti-air.

Since Mutalisks efficiently kill both air and ground units, the idea is to hit the enemy with a moderate sized force of Mutalisks and simply kill any anti-air units you encounter.

Since Mutas deal light splash damage, they seem to be most effective in a pack. Additionally, Mutalisks are rather weak versus buildings, so it requires a good number of Mutalisks to kill an enemy completely.

For this reason, I prefer not to try a Starcraft 2 Mutalisk rush with just a few Mutalisks. I find that the perfect number is about 6 to 8, depending on the game and map. Any less than that and the opponent will be able to build anti-air buildings like Turrets and Spore Crawlers faster than you can kill them.

2v2 Starcraft 2 Mutalisk Rush

To tip the odds in my favor, I like to use this strategy in 2v2 matches rather than 1v1 matches. In a 2v2, I find that combining the Starcraft 2 Mutalisk rush with a Zergling or Zealot rush to be very effective. The Zergling rush slows the enemy down enough for them to be susceptible to an early air attack. Here is how it works:

- To start, ramp up your economy. Go for a 14 pool (build 14 Drones before your Spawning Pool and get both Extractors up and running while the Spawning Pool is building.

- Have your partner go for fast Zerglings or Zealots. Have him sacrifice his economy slightly (such as a 10 Pool or 11 Gateway) in order to get units faster.

- Build your Queen then tech to Lair

- During this time, flesh out your economy (22 Drones total) while your partner rushes

- As soon as you can, start sending your partner extra minerals so he can build more Zealots or Zerglings with his limited economy.

- Have your partner send you Vespene gas in return. This will allow you to produce extra Mutalisks

- Grab your Spire as soon as you can. Make sure you have Larva spawned and your partner has given you enough gas to make 8 Mutalisks the second your Spire finishes.

I find this most effective versus Zerg players. Zealot rushes work good versus Zerg and Zerg have little in the way of anti-air. Ground rushes make Zerg tech for Roaches rather than for a Lair. This leaves the Zerg player wide open for a Mutalisk rush.

This also works fairly well on Protoss players in 2v2. I would avoid this versus Terran players as they tend to have way too much anti-air. A single Thor and a few SCVs can take out 6 Mutalisks with ease. Missile Turrets are also cheap and very effective versus Mutalisks.

When I am playing against Terran, I generally only use Mutalisks for defense against an early Siege Tank / Hellion push. I avoid Mutalisks once Thors are in the game.

1v1 Starcraft 2 Mutalisk Rush

In a 1v1 match, I again recommend doing something to either throw your enemy off or slow him down. My favorite way to this is with a Roach push. I will use a build order such as:

14 supplies - Spawning Pool
13 supplies - Extractor
14 supplies - Overlord
14 supplies - Queen
14 supplies - Roach Warren

..and then start producing Roaches from there. If it was a small map, I would have built my Spawning Pool a little earlier to prevent a rush.

At any rate, I like to push with 6-12 Roaches (depending on size of enemy's army). While I am either putting pressure on his base (or keeping him pinned inside), I recommend grabbing a Lair and then a Spire. Here is what you will find:

- On occasion, your Roach push will actually kill the enemy or seriously cripple him. In this situation, you want to keep making Roaches and finish him off.

- More commonly, your enemy will barricade himself inside his base. Protoss players will build their Gateway, Cybernetics Core, and a Pylon near the entrance and rush for a Robotics Facility. Zerg players will build Roaches and/or Spine Crawlers in response.

What is important here is that the enemy is defending against Roaches (heavy ground unit) rather than against Mutalisks (light air unit). These two units are the exact opposite and few units in game counter both the Mutalisk and Roach. As a result, your first 5-6 Mutalisks will often finish off the enemy completely.

I only recommend doing this versus Zerg and Protoss players. It just does not seem to work well versus Terran. As far modifying your Starcraft 2 Mutalisk rush based on the enemy's race, against Zerg players you will want to grab a lot of Roaches to put serious pressure on the enemy and slide in with just a few Mutalisks to finish him off. 

Against Protoss players, you will want to "fake" the Roach push, just using a few Roaches. This is often enough to provoke the enemy into building a Robotics Facility and rushing for Immortals. At this point, you swoop in with your 6-8 Mutalisks for an easy win.


Here are the guidelines for a good Starcraft 2 Mutalisk rush:

- In 2v2, have your partner rush while you tech straight for Mutalisks.

- In 1v1, either go hard for Roaches (vs Zerg) or fake a Roach push (vs Protoss), and then secretly transition into a Mutalisk rush.

- Avoid the Starcraft 2 Mutalisk Rush versus Terran players.

This is a great Zerg strategy to add to your arsenal and is very effective with just 1 Hatchery.