So you're telling me to play a lot and not focus so much on strats?

  (Edited: )

TL;DR Yes.

So, I saw Sean Tweeted an article tonight about producing the best product possible via Quantity over Quality. The excerpt from the article that struck me hardest was this bit:

The ceramics teacher announced on opening day that he was dividing the class into two groups.

All those on the left side of the studio, he said, would be graded solely on the quantity of work they produced, all those on the right solely on its quality.
His procedure was simple: on the final day of class he would bring in his bathroom scales and weigh the work of the “quantity” group: 50 pounds of pots rated an “A”, 40 pounds a “B”, and so on.
Those being graded on “quality”, however, needed to produce only one pot — albeit a perfect one — to get an “A”.
Well, came grading time and a curious fact emerged: the works of highest quality were all produced by the group being graded for quantity.
It seems that while the “quantity” group was busily churning out piles of work—and learning from their mistakes — the “quality” group had sat theorizing about perfection, and in the end had little more to show for their efforts than grandiose theories and a pile of dead clay.

All of his Tweets cascade over to his Facebook page, where a user asked the question...

So you're telling me to play SC2 a lot and not focus so much on strategies?

That got me thinking. The short answer is yes, of course. But why is this the answer?

The more games you play, the more experienced you are. Not only with experience does the muscle memory in your fingers, and the memorization of all of your hotkeys come into play, but with more experience, you begin to realize, "Damnit, this has happened to me several times now... if he's constructing building A I usually get struck by tech A within a few minutes..."

This is the light bulb moment. After playing a large amount of games, you can start to recognize more robust patterns now that you have a greater number of games you've experienced and are able to study and relate to one-another, which leads to strategies in how to counter these specific circumstances over time. Since you've seen some of these strategies or patterns several times now, you are more able to understand why things happen the way they do.A good example is thrown out by that article linked with the clay pots. Who would be more experienced: A Starcraft 2 player who has played 10 games every day over the course of 3 months, or a Starcraft 2 player that studies 10 strategies every day for 3 months, and plays a single game on the final day of the third month? Who do you think would perform better?

Then an argument is posed...

Experience is great and all, but skill simply isn't measured by how many times you do something. Its about how many times you do it well.

I don't believe that this is true! Skill is something that can be built upon and constructed over time.

It all comes down to how receptive the player is, and their willingness to explore further into the game than most normal people. Those hypothetical 10 games a day will have to eventually pay off, if the player is willing to learn from those games and improve on their strategies. Practice will definitely never make perfect, since perfection is, well.. perfection. But practice can equal something more within someone who wants to learn and improve.

I hate comparing video games to sports or physical activity, but it's a similar situation with making different plays in American football. Making those plays over and over should eventually increase how accurate the player is at making them, if the player is devoted and willing to build on them, and making small adjustments where necessary to maximize effectiveness.If you keep your mind open and are exploring different aspects of the game in front of you, coupled with continuous repetition, wouldn't you say that you'd eventually learn proper mechanics to maintain your economy at the same time as you strategize on which front to attack the enemy, countering his plays where possible? Skill isn't necessarily some sort of godsend trait that's unattainable by those that haven't been blessed by it.

I'd like to hear everyone's thoughts on this, as this is my quite large 2 cents worth. Reading that article sort of gave me an epiphany of sorts...