I Analyzed the Resource Collection Rates of Every TvP Played at IEM Katowice. Here are the results.

starcraft 9 - I Analyzed the Resource Collection Rates of Every TvP Played at IEM Katowice. Here are the results.


Protoss being up in economy is a major point that people have often brought up when discussing PvT and the problems surrounding it however, I have always been doubtful of this assertion. MULEs provide a large income boost and Protoss has to cut probes as well as spending Chrono on upgrades.

This comment,

Then again, this patch is missing a point and that is the fact that protoss economy can outpace terran economy very fast in the early-midgame with the nexus getting chrono'd and getting a 10-20 workers lead consistently, and lets be honest, in that point in the game (before midgame when terran got 3bases) mules dont make up for the fact that protoss is ahead so many workers that early on, because also there's always around 5scv's building something.

must have pushed me over the edge because I decided to do a little investigation to see how big the discrepancy really was. I did think that Protoss was generally ahead in economy, but I didn't believe it was by a large margin.

If you just want the TL;DR then here are the final results:

Also, special shoutout to /u/NoticalsPlaysGames for his web app that sorts replays. It made getting all the TvP replays from Katowice extremely painless and easy, so thank you!

Please note:

The spikes in the graphs are irrelevant to the analysis itself. Here's my explanation for them:

The early spikes are likely from the few games that ran short and are after one player has done critical damage, the later ones simply from critical economic damage. The reason why they appear as spikes instead of being aggregated with other values is because when the game ends there is a player stat event (The game event I get this information from in replays). This causes these outlier values to be isolated, rather than aggregated with other values (Since games are almost never the same length).

I could ignore these end of game values but it was simpler to program if I got data from every player stat event instead of programming in special cases.

TL;DR They're outliers that I didn't remove from the dataset.

What did I actually analyze?

The goal was to try and compare the economies of Terran and Protoss players in a way that mitigated the income spikes of MULEs and allowed us to compare economies at critical points in the game (I.e around the 5-8 min mark).

I calculated what is effectively a running average of both mineral and gas collection rates for each player in each game. This means that at each data point the average collection rate was recalculated. This allows us to see how collection rates change over time in an intuitive way instead of trying to interpret raw collection rate data.


There were 73 TvP's played at IEM Katowice and all of those replays were included in the analysis.


As mentioned above a running average was kept for both minerals and gas for each player in each game. There is one data point approximately every 7 seconds, not including end of game data points. This means we will have multiple collection rates for each time in the dataset.

To account for this, if multiple collection rates existed at the same point in time they were averaged and that result became the final collection rate for that time. In other words, all the matches were aggregated together.

There is a lot of noise in the results because collection rates can vary greatly depending on the events of a match (I.e rushes, all ins or heavy harassment) so keep that in mind when looking at the results.


Average Collection Rates

Average Mineral Collection Rate:

Looking at the graph we can see that both races are actually quite tightly coupled. Protoss has a higher collection rate for a large portion of the game, but not by much. Note that although there a lot of spikes, these are likely not macro games and may be isolated data points rather than aggregated ones.

Average Gas Collection Rate:

Same story for Gas, except Protoss has a slightly larger lead (In terms of the value of each resource) which is to be expected as Protoss is usually ahead in tech and take their 5th and 6th gasses very quickly.

Difference in Collection Rates

In these graphs positive means Protoss favoured and negative means Terran favoured.

Mineral Collection Rate Difference:

Looking at the difference in collection rate over time for Minerals, it seems that Protoss has approximately a 50 mineral per minute lead on Terran throughout most of the game.

Gas Collection Rate Difference:

Here we can see Protoss pulling ahead in Gas collection by approximately 30 in the early-mid game and 60+ in the late game. Again, this doesn't seem to be a large difference in economy.

Update: How could the results be biased?

One possible bias I came up with was game length. If Terrans were generally cheesing then that could throw off the analysis since it would overall be measuring the collection rate of rushes rather than macro games, so I did a quick analysis of the length of TvP's as well.

Vague Match Length Distribution:

Most matches are between 10-22min, with only 8 lasting less than 10min so it is doubtful that this significantly influenced the results.

What does this mean?

I'm honestly not quite sure. To me, it suggests that the economies of both races are surprisingly even and that all of the talk about Chrono boost being too good, Protoss economy being out of control, etc is a lot of hyperbole. That is definitely a bit surprising though.

If anyone has another take on this data or has ideas for improving the analysis I'm all ears.

I'm looking forwards to see how the community looks at this data :).

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