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95 players online: 42 of them fighting in 14 battles, 4353 on discord

Commander wanted!

Drive giant robots, build an army of a thousand Fleas, move mountains if needed, bury the enemy at all cost!

  • Real time strategy.
  • Physically simulated units and projectiles.
  • Terrain manipulation.
  • 100+ varied units with unique abilities.
  • Singleplayer campaign.
  • Challenging, non-cheating AI.
  • Multiplayer 1v1 - 16v16, FFA, coop.
  • Multiplayer online campaign.
  • Really free, no in-game currency, no unfair multiplayer.

Fully Utilized Physics

Simulated unit and projectile physics is used to a level rarely found in a strategy game.

  • Use small nimble units to dodge slow moving projectiles.
  • Hide behind hills that block weapon fire, line of sight and radar.
  • Toss units across the map with gravity guns.
  • Transport a battleship to a hilltop - for greater views and gun range.

Manipulate the Terrain

The terrain itself is an ever-changing part of the battlefield.

  • Wreck the battlefield with craters that bog down enemy tanks.
  • Dig canals to bring your navy inland for a submarine-in-a-desert strike.
  • Build ramps, bridges, entire fortress if you wish.
  • Burn your portrait into continental crust using the planetary energy chisel.

Singleplayer Campaign and Challenging AI

Enjoy many hours of single player and coop fun with our campaign, wide selection of non-cheating AIs and a survival mode against an alien horde.

  • Explore the galaxy and discover technologies in our singleplayer campaign.
  • Face a challenging AI that is neither brain-dead nor a clairvoyant cheater.
  • Have some coop fun with friends, surviving waves of chicken-monsters.
  • Cloaking? Resurrection? Tough choices customizing your commander.

Casual and Competitive Multiplayer

Zero-K was built for multiplayer from the start, this is where you can end up being hooked for a decade.

  • Enjoying epic scale combat? Join our 16v16 team battles!
  • Looking for a common goal? Fight AIs or waves of chicken-monsters.
  • Prefer dancing on a razor's edge? Play 1v1 in ladder and tournaments.
  • Comebacks, betrayals, emotions always running high in FFA.
  • Want to fight for a bigger cause? Form a clan and join PlanetWars, competitive online campaign with web-game strategic elements, diplomacy and backstabbing.

Power to the People

We are RTS players at heart, we work for nobody. We gave ourselves the tools we always wanted to have in a game.

  • Do what you want. No limits to camera, queue or level of control.
  • Paint a shape, any shape, and units will move to assume your formation.
  • Want to spend more time on tactics? Use construction priorities.
  • Want to focus on economy? Order units to kite, strafe or zig zag bullets.

Plenty of Stuff to Explode Explore

Zero-K is a long term project and it shows, millions hours of proper multiplayer testing and dozens of people contributing ever expanding content.

  • Learn to use all of our 100+ units and play on hundreds of maps.
  • Invent the next mad team-tactics to shock enemies and make allies laugh.
  • Combine cloaking, teleports, shields, jumpjets, EMP, napalm, gravity guns, black hole launchers, mind control and self-replication.
  • Tiny flea swarm that clings to walls?
    Jumping "cans" with steam-spike?
    Buoys that hide under water to ambush ships?
    Mechs that spew fire and enjoy being tossed from air transports?
    Carrier with cute helicopters?
    Jumping Jugglenaut with dual wielding gravity guns?
    Meet them in Zero-K!

or just view the media

Zero-K v1.11.6.0 - Floating Superweapons

This is mostly a fixes and tweaks update as the 3v3 tournament is only in two weeks. Each team must have a new player so everyone is welcome to join. Sign up in this thread if you are interested.

There are two big balance changes: nerfs for superweapons and shields being disabled underwater. Aspis can now float, to give it some use in sea, and floating has been improved in general. The superweapon changes were motivated by some of the epic games on the large maps added in April. Starlight is much more expensive as it is the best at ending games, but games were ending a bit too early. Disco Rave Party and Zenith were differentiated by leaning into the slow aim and rate of DRP compared to the instant response of Zenith. Thanks for all the feedback in the thread on the forums.

The most notable fixes are for the rare Zenith gathering bug and the Fencer/Bulkhead transition issue. There are also many backend improvements to scripting and the engine (which was updated earlier in the week), some of which are relevant to modding so are listed in a section below. More Chinese translations have been contributed and a few campaign missions have been tweaked based on feedback.


Shields are disabled when the unit carrying them is submerged.
  • The disable is the same as any other disable. Charge drops to zero and linking does not work.
  • The unit must be completely underwater. This is the same threshold at which cloak is disabled and units are no longer detectable by non-sea vision.

Aspis can now float and floating in general has tweaks to help it stay above water.
  • Units lobbed or gravity-gunned into the sea can float immediately.
  • Note: This was already the case for sea-to-sea lobs and transport throws.
  • Floating units no longer sink while teleporting.
  • Note: Teleporting from land to the sea will still put the unit on the sea floor.

Cloak is cancelled immediately after a unit takes a decloaking action (such as firing). This was always the intention, but at some point action decloak gained a random delay of up to a third of a second.

Cornea no longer pays for personal cloak while area cloaking.
  • This reduces its effective energy drain by 1 energy per second.

Firewalker is less indiscriminate.
  • Now checks whether a friendly unit is directly in front of both barrels before firing.
  • Aims a little higher for more clearance.

Zenith costs a bit more as part of a general superweapon nerf, but has more range.
  • Cost 36k -> 38k
  • Range 8400 -> 8800
  • Fixed a rare bug that would transform it into an expensive doorstop.

Disco Rave Party costs a bit more and leans hard into directionality.
  • Cost 40k -> 42k
  • Health 12k -> 8k
  • Range 7500 -> 7000
  • Aim speed 4 degrees/s -> 2.5 degrees/s
  • Full spin up time 1 -> 2 minutes (via reduced acceleration at high spin rates).
  • Spin speed is now lost while turning, with greater losses at high spin.
  • Eg a 45° turn drops spin 100% -> 58%, a 90° turn drops spin 100% -> 33%.

Starlight is much heavier as it is the superweapon that truly ends games.
  • Cost 45k -> 60k
  • Health 7500 -> 12k
  • Range 10k -> 12k


  • Allied AIs are now Hard AIs on Normal difficulty (previously they were Normal AIs).
  • Replace allied Merlins with Dantes in a few missions as they are prone to friendly fire.
  • Adjusted partially built superweapons to leave cost-to-complete unaffected by balance changes.
  • Moved Disco Rave Party slightly closer to the enemy base to partially account for its lower range.
  • The mission briefing box now expands to avoid using a scrollbar for the tips section.
  • Added a hint about mex income sharing to some of the first planets with allies.
  • Made the hints for the Krow mission say a bit more about how to use Krow.
  • Added a hint explaining Retreat Zones to the Krow mission.
  • Cut hints down to four for Kirdipan (since the window is now expanded to show all hints).
  • Fixed Romolis victory condition not checking for Merlins.


  • Added start boxes for Supreme Strait.
  • Improved lighting on All That Glitters.
  • Fixed Timna Island box names.
  • Enable alternate diagonal boxes for Calayo.
  • Fixed small teams boxes for Angel Crossing.
  • Added boxes for Pillar of Doom.
  • Improved the widget that lets people tweak and save water and lighting tweaks.


  • Aegis spin animation is now based on shield charge (thanks Mach56).
  • Improved line of sight rendering with AMD graphics (many cards were using a shaderless fallback).
  • Contrast adaptive sharpening weakens when zooming out to counteract the grainy effect.
  • Reenabled contrast adaptive sharpening by default.
  • Added a subtle bloom shader.
  • Bumpmapped water is now default for Lowest graphics as the others barely work.


  • Added huge nuke warning toggle ingame under Settings/Accessiblity (thanks dunno).
  • Improved the "Skip pregame chat" button on the replay controls.
  • Language change updates unit selection texts immediately.
  • Added translation capability for Zeno.
  • Updated Chinese (both simple and traditional) translations (thanks Kitty, evilblue, et al).
  • Updated Polish translations.
  • Tweaked unit reply volumes slightly.


  • Zeno no longer counts for Turtle Shell (but would have needed to deal real damage).
  • Custom submarines now detected as such for Context Menu properly (instead of as ships).
  • Added LUS preprocessing which translate uses of SFX.*, COB.*, math.{pi,tau}, math.{rad.sqrt}(constant) into constants. Local optimisations for these functions or tables should be removed.
  • "morphUnitCreating" is now a game rules param (was team rules param).
  • Added gadget:GamePaused(playerID, isPaused) to gadget handler.
  • Chicken drone morphs now done via customparams.
  • Missile silo automatically works with any custom missiles you add to the buildlist.
  • Custom missile silos can exist and have moddable stockpile capacity via missile_silo_capacity customparam (still needs script support).
  • Removed old nuke/antinuke models.


  • Fixed Zenith occasionally failing to gather meteors.
  • Fixed Fencer and Bulkhead occasionally failing to transition between states correctly.
  • Fixed always-floaters that teleport to from land to sea not automatically floating.
  • Fixed cloak not being disabled on units when they are reclaimed.
  • Fixed area cloakers with personal cloak erroneously being charged for personal cloak.
  • Fixed the live unit reclaim tooltip using the old value (50%) rather than the new one (80%).
  • Fixed an error upon comshared resign (thanks Shaman).
  • Fixed debris texture.
  • Fixed Zeno not being autogroupable (thanks Shaman).
  • Fixed a rare crash to do with terraform.
  • Fixed a bug where disabling units could break a factory.
  • Increased Lua memory limit.
Posted by AUrankAdminGoogleFrog 5 days ago - comment

3v3 Tournament for new and old players, June 17th

Brace yourselves for the exhilarating Zero-K 3v3 Tournament, where battle-hardened veterans and fresh faces unite to claim victory! Gather your forces, for this is your chance to prove your mettle on the grandest stage of strategic warfare.

Date: June 17th [Saturday]
Time: 1 PM EST | 7 PM CET | 1700 UTC

Forum Thread: http://zero-k.info/Forum/Thread/36455
Challonge Registration: https://challonge.com/tournaments/signup/cFEav6t6rE#/signup/ftilozbrcos
Countdown to Tournament: https://www.timeanddate.com/countdown/generic?iso=20230617T17&p0=1440&font=cursive


Enlist your team in the tournament by posting on the dedicated forum thread or signing up on Challonge. Each team must include at least one new player, adding an exciting twist to the competition. Embrace the opportunity to mentor and fight alongside budding commanders. Don't forget to provide your team name to ensure your presence is duly acknowledged.

Curious about the eligibility of new players? Fear not! A new player is defined as someone who meets either of the following criteria at the time of registration:
  • Playing Zero-K for less than 10 days.
  • Having played fewer than 30 PvP games.

Should your teammate not fit these criteria but you believe they deserve an exception, reach out to MDSK Discord or in the forum thread above.
Posted by AUrankAdminGoogleFrog 8 days ago - comment

Zero-K v1.11.4.1 Many Maps and Lots of Languages

For this update we looked through the new maps from the wider Spring (now Recoil) community and featured a bunch of them. Some will play better than others, but that's what feedback is for! The update also adds translations for Chinese and Italian, and includes an engine update that was benchmarked to improve framerate by 9%. In terms of balance there are nerfs for Reaver and Lance and a cost reduction for Krow. The unit reply sounds have also been rebalanced.

New Maps

We have featured 67 new maps, with many from BAR or raaar. Some are makeovers of classics, others are new takes on a theme, and many are completely new.

There are many large maps suited to big team games or comp stomps: Alpha Siege Dry, Ancient Vault, Bismuth Valley , Carrot Mountains, Darkside (v3.0), Eight Horses, Fool's mate, Entrenched Plains, Heartbreak Hill, Highway 95 East, Highway 95 West, High Noon Remake, Ice Scream (v1.1), Ice Scream (v2.4), Omega Valley, Pawn Retreat, Red River Remake, Red Triangle Remake, Riverrun, Silveridge, Sphagnum Bog, Starwatcher, Taldarim, Two Continents Dry, Two Continents.

These maps are a bit smaller, good for 1v1 or small team games: Callisto, Death Valley, Desert (3.25), Desolation, Ditched, Dockside, Hades Ponds, Hexian Arena, Lake Carne, Mithril Mountain, Scorched Crossing, Theta Crystals, The Halite Maze.

Some particularly experimental maps are: Crucible, High Forts, Hooked, Sky Fortress Sigma.

The maps Point of No Return and Timna Island are designed for chicken or coop games as they are asymmetric, with one side starting in a fortress.

The following maps are updated versions of classics, although many will feel new as there are a lot of maps to play through: Altored Divide Bar Remake, Coastlines Dry, Comet Catcher Remake, Copper Hill, EmainMacha Remake, Incandescence Remake, Highway 95, Hotlips Remake, Icy Crater, Into Battle Redux, MoonQ20XR2, Nuclear Winter Bar, Ravaged Remake, Seths Ravine Remake, Supreme_Crossing, Tabula Remake, Tangerine Remake, The Cold Place BAR, The Hole, The Rock, Tumult Remake, Valles Marineris, Zed Remake.

Predicting which maps will or won't work is tricky, so send feedback. Old versions of revamped maps were left up as they may be distinct enough to coexist or there could be a problem with a new map.


Live unit reclaim yields 80% of the cost of the unit in metal, up from 50%.

Reaver is 7% worse both at firing and turning.
  • Turn rate 1850 -> 1710
  • Reload time 0.467s -> 0.5s

Conjurer is slower to nerf cloakbot expansion rate.
  • Speed 57 -> 54

Thug is better at hitting things.
  • Weapon velocity increased 200 -> 210

Rogue is also better at hitting things.
  • Weapon velocity 185 -> 190

Ravager is also also better at hitting things.
  • Weapon velocity 238 -> 245

Lance is probably due a nerf of some sort and cost is simple.
  • Cost 1000 -> 1100

Krow needs a buff to make it relevant to modern Zero-K.
  • Cost 4500 -> 4200

Superweapons have 25% less health to make them easier to snipe.
  • Starlight health 10k -> 7.5k
  • Disco Rave Party health 16k -> 12k
  • Zenith health 12k -> 9k

Added an experimental game option that reveals superweapons that exceed 5% build progress. It isn't on by default, but could be interesting to test.


  • Added Chinese and Italian translations (click the flag in the top right of the screen ingame).
  • Cleaned up a few unit reply sounds and rebalanced them relative to each other. Most replies are a bit quieter.
  • The tab playerlist share resource buttons now take your storage into account to display how much will actually be shared.


  • Added a game-side lava gadget so that mappers can create lava maps without copying code into the map file. Maps can add lava by including the file "mapconfig/lava_config.lua". See here for the parameters and here for an example. It even supports tides.
  • The startbox editing tool can now be toggled under Settings/Toolbox. This makes it hotkeyable provides space for a hotkey explaining how it works.
  • Added vertex-wise undo, snap to cardinal direction, and snap to map edge to the startbox editing tool.


  • Fixed UI scale detection for screen resolutions in the 2000s (ie 2560x1440).
  • Reset everyone's UI scale settings to catch people who where affected by the issue above. Set Lobby or Game Interface Scale in the main menu under Settings/Lobby and Settings/Game.
  • Fixed menu volume resetting when the track changes.
  • Fixed and reset the non-functional Unit Reply Volume slider.
  • Improved the performance of the map list.
  • Toggling "Only Featured Maps" in the lobby updates a previously opened map list correctly.
Posted by AUrankAdminGoogleFrog 57 days ago - comment

Zero-K v1.11.3.0 - Visible Slowdown

This update introduces Zeno, the 5th missile for the Missile Silo, which homes onto a target, hits it for a massive dose of slow damage, and then leaves lingering slow in the surrounding area. Another major change is an increase in general unit visibility via a few nerfs for area cloakers. As usual, there are a few months of fixes, features and, contrary to the title, performance improvements.

New Missile

Added Zeno, a homing slow damage missile built in the Missile Silo.
  • Has significant range, equal to Quake.
  • Homes onto its target.
  • Deals 10k slow damage to a single target.
  • Interacts with shields similarly to Eos, as 10k slow damage is 3333 damage to a shield.
  • Leaves a large area of lingering slow damage for 30 seconds.

Cloak Fields

Many players felt that cloak was a bit too prevalent and that whether to use it lategame wasn't much of a choice. We address this with a few targeted nerfs to area cloak. Most notably, Cornea has a directional cloak field rather than a huge bubble, and larger armies are slower to cloak. The latter is implemented with the new cloak rate mechanic.
  • Area cloakers now apply cloak at a set rate, starting with units closest to the centre of the bubble.
  • Cloak rate is in terms of mass per second, and only spent on units that are ready to cloak.
  • For reference, Bandit has 90 mass, Lance about 300, Dante about 800, and Detriment about 2400.
  • Cloak can still be maintained on any number of units.
  • Units with personal cloak are unaffected. They don't wait to be cloaked, and don't spend cloak rate that could be used on other units. This includes units that cloak while stationary.

Cornea cloaks a much smaller area, but the area can be moved with Fire Special Weapon (D).
  • Jamming range 550 -> 600
  • Cloak field range 550 -> 400
  • Can shift the centre of its cloak bubble up to 200 elmos away
  • Has a cloak rate of 1200 mass/s

Iris has a small range reduction and cloaks at a slower rate than Cornea.
  • Cloak field range 400 -> 360
  • Jamming range 400 -> 360
  • Has a cloak rate of 800 mass/s

Commander Area Cloak loses a similar amount of cloak range and has the same cloak rate.
  • Cloak field range 350 -> 320
  • Jamming range (with cloak field module) 350 -> 320
  • Has a cloak rate of 800 mass/s

Conjurer is the most efficient cloaker in terms of cloak rate per cost.
  • Has a cloak rate of 600 mass/s


Puppy now leaves wrecks and debris when killed, but not when it hits a target. Previously it left nothing.

Imp now only barely "makes cost" against a lone Scorcher.
  • Cost 120 -> 125

Snitch costs a bit more to spam.
  • Cost 160 -> 170

Cyclops slowbeam had a bug that made it do 3x the intended damage to shields.
  • Slowbeam damage to shields 2000 -> 666

Hercules can reach the ground and lift everything.
  • Fixed a weapon bug that caused its laser to not reach ground units while cruising.
  • Can now transport Shogun and Reef.

Advanced Radar is a bit too good after its cost reduction from 500.
  • Cost 400 -> 450

Maps and Campaign

  • Added Zeno to planet Nataa (the Missile Silo mission).
  • Tweaked planet Mstaras (the Gunship Factory mission) to be a bit easier on difficulties below Brutal.
  • Added startboxes for Angel Crossing, Calamity v1.1 and Supreme Crossing V2.
  • The "Sun, Fog & Water" map tweaking tool now loads its defaults from map settings.
  • Added shadow density to "Sun, Fog & Water" map tweaking tool.
  • Added compatibility for more metal layout standards.
  • Removed map fog by default. This is the type that was visible when zoomed out.
  • Tweaked the lighting and water settings on a few maps.

Graphics and Interface

  • Reordered battles in the multiplayer lobby to put empty autohosts below running games.
  • Build spacing UI has more options, found under "Settings/Interface/Building Placement".
  • Added a contrast adaptive sharpening shader. It can be enabled under Settings/Graphics/Effects with "Sharpening".
  • Added notable death explosion to ingame unit help menu (accessed via space+click).
  • Added better support for flipping the minimap, which is useful when used with a flipped camera.
  • Added a widget that displays map info like a label on a painting. Disabled by default.
  • Fiddled with the way line of sight adds to radar. This unlocks more ways to customise radar coverage.
  • Tweaked war and peace detection to spend a bit more time playing peace music.
  • Fixed slight visual misalignment when Missile Silo launches missiles.


  • Improved performance of game mechanics that handle orders.
  • Fixed significant framerate drop (with certain settings) caused by many multi-weapon striders firing at once.
  • Fixed kicking a spectator sometimes causing a player to resign.
  • Fixed X-Ray shader issues on some hardware.
  • Fixed a rare bug with jumpjet behaviour.
  • Fixed a rare crash in the tab playerlist.
  • Fixed missing text on shield charge bars.
  • Blitz description no longer mentions its old EMP death explosion.
Posted by AUrankAdminGoogleFrog 2 months ago - comment

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