Everything I write is my own opinion and is only intended to give an decent overview over the current unit state of Zero-k. Feel free to post a comment if you disagree with parts of this tier list. I made the tier list while keeping in mind the micro skill of at least top 50 players. Some units share multiple categories but I placed them where I thought it makes more sense. If anyone wants this on the wiki, feel free to add it.
S: Core units which are not only great at their intended purpose (role), but are either hard to counter or take over other roles too. These are units you would generally facswitch for.
A: Great units which can easily be used for their intended purpose (role). Sometimes they can take over two roles but are mediocre at both.
B: These units are neither bad nor really good. They are used mostly because you are unable to spend metal for a facswitch.
C: These units underperform compared to most other units. They have some niche situations where they can be used but are rarely build.
D: These units fail at their intended purpose or cost way too much compared to what they can achieve.
Total tiers per factory (sorted by max S + A count as 1/2 S, displayed with S total score before Factory, then B, ….,)
Athena doesn’t count as it can build more units then any factory.
(T stands for Tier)
|A||Gremlin||A||Vandal||A||Impaler|| || ||A||Trident|
|A||Imp||A||Snitch||A||Crasher|| || ||C||Charon|
|A||Iris||B||Aspis|| || || || ||B||Hercules|
| || || || ||C||Skuttle|| || ||C||Djinn|
| || || || || || || || || || |
|S||Corsair||A||Merlin|| || ||A||Scythe|
|A||Mistral||S||Funnelweb|| || ||S||Moderator|
|B||Siren||A||Paladin|| || ||S||Recluse|
|S||Envoy||B||Detriment|| || ||A||Blitz|
|B||Zephyr||S||Shogun|| || ||A||Knight|
| || ||D||Reef|| || ||S||Phantom|
| || ||A||Scylla|| || ||A||Impaler|
| || || || || || ||A||Widow|
| || || || || || ||A||Gremlin|
| || || || || || ||B||Aspis|
| || || || || || ||A||Iris|
| || || || || || ||C||Djinn|
| || || || || || ||S||Ultimatum|
All comparisons are between the same unit class.
1v1 - Small team games (1-4 Players on each team):
Glaive is fast, has high dps and out of combat regen. Being able to fight against all other raiders with either superior speed or proper use of retreat advantage makes it one of the best Raiders in the game. Due to its low metal cost it can easily be used in multiple locations or to surround even riots to beat them.
Scythe is fast, can 2hit mex, is cloaked and has out of combat regen. Due to its low energy requirement (1 e/s) Scythe is able to be built even in early stages of the game. They can be a pain to deal with as they are threatening mex and even commanders all over the map. They are hold back due to easily dieing against even a small number of raiders when they are decloaked.
Bandit really shine against glaives as they are outranging them but they have lower dps and cost more. Bandit is hold back by being somewhat slow for a raider which means it can barely catchup to most skirmishers without having them retreat into defence.
Dirtbag is just one thing… annoying. Having a jump and high hp they are good to screen for cloaked units but easily loose against any other raider. Raiding mex with Dirtbag is nearly impossible due to its low dps. While they can be used to block vehicle movement, you should usually build other units which are actually able to fight back.
Dart is fast, has high vison range and does slow dmg and does deal low normal damage. While you usually won’t be able to kill mex or fight fast firing raiders with darts, they are excellent for vision or screening for cloaked units. Darts work wonders when used against assaults as they are able to decrease their fighting ability for very low cost. Dart can fight against most units with a reload time, as they are cheap enough to even swarm other Raiders like e.g. Ducks.
Scorcher is fast, has decent range to kite many other raiders and the dmg to crush anything getting to close to it. If you don’t pay attention for a short amount of time you usually lose either a commander or your base against this unit. Scorcher is one of the best Raiders in the game.
Dagger is very fast but has no dps to back up its fighting potential. Instead it usually is used as anti-Raider as it can 2 or 3hit most other Raiders. Dagger is somewhat bad at clearing mex as you need at least 5 to raid in a reasonable amount of time. Even though Dagger can hit underwater with Gauss, it is outperformed by most other water units.
Flea is fast, has high dps per metal cost and can cloak while standing still. Flea was once the king of Raiders but with their increased metal cost they can no longer dare to engage other raiders. Flea is still able to force your enemy to build Lotus everywhere or lose mex on all sides and is great for attacking artillery or finding cloaked units. While Flea is easily able to swarm assaults, they usually reach a unit density where even assaults can hit and somewhat trade back.
Pyro has high dps and aoe but is very fragile for its metal cost. Pyro works very well against other raiders when retreating, but can be surrounded and taken out when out of position. Pyro is very good for raiding and can jump out of most tricky situations. Pyro is being held back as it is unable to win against a lotus if it is not jumping directly at it.
Puppy has decent speed, deals a good amount of dmg but has low range. Most units are able to outrange Puppy and kill it without dealing any dmg. Puppy is only at B because it can perform somewhat well in stealing reclaim or creating a sudden army advantage from eating e.g. an enemy commander.
Kodachi is fast, can kill mex in one hit, has out of combat regen but very low range. Using Kodachi is similar to using a melee unit while being able to spread fire behind it to harass raiders without actually engaging them. Due to its low range you can usually kill Kodachi with most other Raiders, but if it does get into your base you will definitely lose a couple mex.
Blitz is fast, has a good amount of health, but very low dps per metal cost. Blitz is an anti-Raider and really effective against assaults too, as it can easily stunlock or retreat because of emp. Blitz is a snowball unit which is especially effective in overwhelming enemys and not taking any/much damage in return. While it does have a good amount of hp, it usually dies vs riots and does need 3 Blitz to kill a mex in a driveby.
Duck is somewhat slow, has low dps, but a higher range then many other raiders. Duck is an anti-Raider due to being able to 1 or 2hit most other raiders. Because of their low speed they are hard to utilize as raiders and vs skirmishers even when they can kill a mex with two shots. This is especially noticable underwater as they are outrun by most other units.
Cutter has one of the biggest vision radiuses in the game, while being insanely fast. Cutter is unable to deal any considerable dmg but able to run away while scouting everything the enemy has. Do not underestimate that Cutter has disarm damage as it can be used in swarms allowing to somewhat snowball when catching units out of position.
Hunter has a high movement speed and is able to 2hit mex. While Hunter does deal quite some dmg it has way too low hp to reasonably fight against most other sea units. Units tend to cluster way easier then on land which results in them often dieing to splash dmg (e.g. Urchin).
Seawolf has decent movement speed, is underwater, has slow damage and is surprisingly sturdy. Seawolf has low dps and is thus somewhat bad at killing mex fast. But because of the slowing attack Seawolf is being build in many situations to support your current units and can force your opponent to build units which can attack underwater.
Corsair has high hp, decent dps and moderate movement speed. Corsair is effective against anything which gets close due to its high hp while having a good amount of dps. Corsair is only stoppable by either underwater units. While units which have more range then corsair are effective too, most ships are so fast that they can be microed to dodge the projectiles.
Riots are in a tough spot atm, while this is a comparison between Riots, I think Riots are kinda in a bad spot compared to other roles atm.[Spoiler]
Reaver has low range, low speed, low hp, high dps and out of combat regen. Because Reaver has a low aoe attack, raiders are usually able to surround and kill it with equal metal or a slight advantage. But if this unit is unable to get flanked due to terrain, defence or sneaked in with area cloak, it will definitely crush many enemies.
Outlaw has a true aoe attack, slow damage and mediocre hp. Outlaw is the only Riot which does 0 friendly fire damage and attacks in a sphere which makes it impossible to flank this unit. While Outlaw doesn’t have much real damage, its slow damage cripples most raiders resulting in them being hit by assaults or skirmishers. At the same time it can scan for cloaked units and bombs.
Ripper has decent aoe, mediocre hp and decent speed. Even though Ripper doesn’t have a huge amount of dps it can 1 or 2hit most raiders and force them back with its aoe. Ripper often gets outperformed by microed Scorchers but is definitely a decent choice against a cluster of raiders.
Mace has good hp, decent speed, good dps and high range. Mace is actually not a really good Riot unit as it can be overwhelmed by simply bringing enough raiders as it has no aoe. The reason why Mace is so powerful is because its range and speed exceeds most other riot units. This means it is an anti-Riot Riot unit. Mace is able to push commanders too, as it can stay out of range with some amount of micro.
Venom has good movement speed, low hp and has good aoe. Venom deals nearly no damage resulting in it needing the support of other units or not being able to kill them in a reasonable amount of time. While Venom can stunlock units, if Venom gets flanked it easily gets beaten without any losses. Venom has good aoe which is both good and a bad thing, as multiple venoms often stun your own units too. Venom actually works better against assaults due to its speed, then against multiple Raiders.
Redback has low hp, low speed and good dps. Redback is basically the worse version of Mace. It also can be overwhelmed by simply bringing enough raiders as it has no aoe. Redback suffers in comparison in two aspects. Its range is not that much higher then other riots and it is considerably slower.
Ogre has high hp, decent speed, good aoe and decent dps. Ogre can 1hit most other raiders e.g. Scorcher while having enough aoe to kill multiple raiders at once. Ogre nearly matches the range of Mace and can often fight with commanders without taking much damage in return. One reason why Ogre is not S Tier is, because you are able to surround it with raiders and can kill it with about the same amount of metal cost.
Archer is slow for a Raider but fast for a Riot. Archers damage comes from impulse which can kill especially spiders by pushing them from a hill. This results in them having awfully low dps against static and heavy targets and thus bad at killing mex. They are especially bad at sea as their range is too low to actually deal any dmg and impulse doesn’t do anything on sea. At the same time amph is basically rooted while going to the surface resulting in it being basically useless on sea.
Scallop: C (underwater B)
Scallop has decent hp, high dps and is slow. Scallop is so slow on land that you usually can’t use it other then hoping the enemy runs into its shotgun. While you can utilize the high dps with e.g. lobster thow, you cannot retreat which often results in suicidal attacks. Scallop performs considerably better in the water but suffers from not being able to choose engagements due to its low speed compared to ships and hovers.
Siren has high very high hp, low dps, good range and good aoe. Siren often is used when fighting against amph or other underwater units as they tend to have low hp. Sirens aoe results in them being totally awkward to use in higher densities, because they start hitting each other. The long-range rocket can be utilized with some micro but often hits the water as it targets e.g. moving ships.
Claymore has high hp, very high movement speed and a huge aoe. Claymore is a monster which obliterates amph away from sea, as they have no unit which can reasonably fight back and Claymore is even faster than Duck. Because it is able to run in and 1 or 2hit whole groups of enemy units it can easily kite and kill many different sea units. Claymore is only countered by ship skirm arty, air and using fast units to lure their own bombs back to them.
Ronin has high hp per cost, mediocre range and good dps for a Skirmisher. While the stats of Ronin are quite good, this unit has quite some problems on the battlefield. The main problem is that it can’t be massed even when it does not cost much metal. The reason is, that units can’t shoot trough each other and often your own units stand in the way between the Ronin or the enemy. This results in either not firing or friendly fire. The other problem is having low range resulting in being too close to either defence, raiders and sometimes even riots.
Rogue has mediocre hp, good range and mediocre dps. Rogue has enough range to attack lotus without taking any damage in return. Because they shoot over each other, they can be clustered and used with other units in front. The only reason why Rogue isn’t seeing much play is because it gets outperformed by Felon.
Felon has good hp, mediocre range and insanely high dps. While Felon does drain shield while firing, it can usually delete any unit coming close enough and retreat afterwards. Because of its hitscan weapon it can fight against basically any unit including raiders and air. You simply cannot fight Felon in a direct confrontation if you don’t have enough hp to drain its shield or didn’t barrage it with high range units. The best units against Felon are cloaked snitch or when the shield is somewhat drained Phantom and Likho.
Fencer has mediocre hp, high range, mediocre dps and high movement speed. Fencer it very strong because it has one of the highest ranges of all skirmishers. At the same time, it can hit air units and raiders with its homing missiles. Fencer are extremely strong in the early game and can snowball out of control very quickly. Because they have to stop to fire, they can be overrun by raiders and assaults. This is especially effective when attacking from the side, as fencers can’t shoot though each other. But with their high speed Fencers are often able to run away from tricky situations if microed properly.
Scalpel has mediocre hp, mediocre range, low dps and decent movement speed. This unit does usually not deal enough damage to actually deal with riots or assaults if you don’t have enough to 1hit them. The reason why this is in B and not C is, that it has decent movement speed and homing missiles which reliably hit units slower than Raiders.
Recluse has low hp per cost, high range and mediocre dps. This unit can outrange most other skirmisher and often attack from angles not easily reachable by enemies. Having multiple Recluses results in them working as Riot due to inaccuracy and firing three missiles with each attack. To beat Recluse you often have to utilize air or artillery, if you don’t have enough units to push them directly.
Crab very high hp, high range, mediocre dps and good aoe. While Crab is arguably an assault, it is more often used on terraspikes to gain additional range and be protected against assault units. Crab can actually hit Stingers with force fire without taking damage due to its big aoe. Moving removes Crabs armour and because of this can’t really be used as an assault. With its insane armour hp pool and big range it can stop most units from engaging while firing from a save positon. Even artillery fire can easily be repaired against.
Moderator has low hp per cost, mediocre range, low dps and slow damage. While Moderators stats don’t seem very impressive, it does have an hitscan slow beam which can 1hit or cripple most other units. Moderator really shines vs Assaults and Riots due to its slow beam and because it is excellent flex Anti Air with its burst potential. If you don’t completely overwhelm Moderators, they can usually kill multiple units and retreat again.
Buoy has good hp, mediocre range, low dps, very low movement speed and slow damage. Buoy is very effective against Assaults and Riots due to its slow damage. Because it is very slow it can often be easily pushed with Raiders or killed by Artillery making it very difficult to utilize a cluster of Buoys. Buoys work especially well in the early game.
Mistral has low hp per cost, high range, mediocre dps and decent movement speed. Mistral is basically Recluse on sea with more range and speed. But because most units are either very fast or underwater Mistral often can’t attack the enemy properly. While Mistral is definitely strong against Urchin and slower units, it is often outperformed by Envoy.
Knight has mediocre hp, low movement speed, decent dps and emp damage. Knight is good against other assault units as it can stunlock them and has decent dps. Knight can actually fight against Raiders too as they have an instantly hitting weapon. The main problem with Knight is that they don’t have enough speed to properly attack or retreat. Their comparably low hp per metal cost doesn’t help in this aspect either. But if Knight gets in range with e.g. help of a Conjurer area cloak, Knight is absolutely terrifying in a direct confrontation.
Thug has mediocre hp per metalcost, low movement speed, decent dps and a shield. Thug works especially well because it regenerates hp/s in combat with its shield. Thug can additionally share its free energy shield with surrounding units. Due to their low speed and low damage they usually tend to fail against raiders and skirmisher but are able to push your enemy back with their high hp.
Aspis has low hp, decent movement speed, no weapons and a huge shield. Aspis is in this class because you usually use it to push and act as a damage sponge. Shields actually don’t want to use Aspis because of its energy cost, but they are forced to build them against big aoe or high damage attacks e.g. Likho and Phantom. If those units weren’t a problem, then Thugs would be used instead because they have about the same shield and regeneration per metal cost. At the same time Thug doesn’t need energy and has a weapon.
Ravager has good hp per metal cost, high movement speed and good dps. Overall Ravager is good. It is often used in clusters and can be tricky to use against some of the riots. Ravager is one of the Assaults which actually have a chance to catch up to skirmisher and have dps to threaten eco when breaking trough. They can still be overwhelmed by Raiders and get considerably harder to use when the game reaches a higher unit density.
Halberd has very good hp in armoured form, higher movement speed then some Raiders (cough Bandit cough) and good dps. Halberd would be totally insane if the range wouldn’t be basically meele. It can somewhat work as a tanky Raider (especially against skirmisher), somewhat as an armoured scout, but often cannot be used as an assault against defences.
Hermit has high hp per metal cost, decent dps per metal cost and low movement speed. Hermit seems to be really tanky but is feels like it isn’t. Reason for this is that you have to use such a big cluster of Hermits that they start to lose against aoe/Riots. They are slow enough that they often cannot properly engage or retreat and don’t have enough damage to 1hit most other raiders. Another problem with bigger Hermit clusters is, that they cannot properly shoot anymore as they block their own line of fire.
Jack has high hp per metal cost, good dps and has slow movement speed. Jack works especially well against defence and can catch units with its jump. Jacks main advantage is that it usually survives long enough to jump in and jump out again to repair. It works very good vs Commanders and has high enough dps to kill most units which dare to get too close. Though Jack can be outranged by some raiders and is generally helpless when wasting its jump.
Minotaur has high hp, decent dps and good movement speed. Minotaur excels the most with the attack and repair tactic. Usually you can’t chase Minotaurs even with Raiders as the Raider won’t be able to properly dodge anymore. Minotaur is really hard to counter when you don’t have the space to outmaneuver them and surround them with high dps Raiders. They are fast enough to catch up to most skirmisher and deal enough burst damage to kill them and retreat immediately afterwards. Against Minotaurs you either need slow damage, stun, placeholder or push them back with burst damage e.g. Lance or even Ultimatum.
Cyclops has very high hp, decent dps, low movement speed and slow damage. Cyclops is absolutely devastating against other high cost units with its slow beam. The main cannon deals enough damage to 1 or 2hit most units. Raiders are able to catch up easier due to its lower movement speed and only one attack compared to Minotaur. Currently Minotaur outperforms Cyclops in many situations, else you would see them instead.
Grizzly has high hp, decent dps and low movement speed. An assault with an instantly hitting high range laser attack? Of course you want to have that. Grizzly can hit raiders and air units alike. Grizzly is seriously hard to counter as you need to surround it with either enough raiders or assault units. Grizzly can usually stay out of range of most other units and even outranges or competes with Skirmisher. Its main problem is its low speed and low hp per cost compared to other assaults. This means you usually need to build Artillery or go for an all-out push against Grizzly. Grizzly is somewhat easier to beat in sea as it is helpless when underwater protection dies.
Sling has mediocre range and low dps. Sling needs line of sight on the building it wants to hit, as it misses over 99% on radar dots. While Sling doesn’t deal a lot of damage, it can push back lotus and Stinger in the early game and shouldn’t be used in later stages of the game.
Phantom has mediocre range, high burst and cloak. Phantom is able to hit nearly any unit in the game, because its projectile is so fast that even most Raiders can’t dodge it. While Phantom has a long reload time, it has enough damage to kill most units in 1hit. Due to its cloak Phantom can dare to go closer to the front and try to kill high value targets like other artillery. If you want to do this you should have Scythes or cloaked Glaives in front, to scout and protect your Phantoms.
Racketeer has good range and disarm instead of damage. Racketeer is an awkward artillery unit as it does not keep defence permanently disarmed. Not dealing damage at all is a huge downside but the Rockets are homing and able to hit even on radar dots and mobile units including air. Racketeer is more useful for disarming heavy units then actual defence and should be used accordingly.
Badger has mediocre range, good movement speed and low burst. Badger is very bad at killing any defence tougher than Picket, as it is totally inaccurate and deals low damage. Badgers main advantage is that its mines stick to the ground and can create a minefield. This is especially useful against low hp targets like skirmisher and cloaked units like e.g. Phantom.
Impaler has a huge range and decent burst. Impaler really shines with its huge range which is only beaten by Merlin, Shogun and static buildings. Impaler has the potential to even snipe mex near the enemy base and can somewhat hit downterraformed caretakers. Impaler is limited though needing line of sight and not being able to hit moving targets at all.
Lance has good range, decent movement speed and a high burst beam. Lance excels at onehitting most units of the game including defence like Stinger. Lance can easily take out Nimbus out of the sky and hit moving targets for most of its burst phase. Lance damage is not a single projectile but a beam over about 1 sec which means that it cannot penetrate shields below 3000 hp. Lance itself usually restricted trough terrain as it does need a clear shooting path and often fails at pathing. Beware that moving with a Lance cluster often results in teamkilling because of the 1 sec burst phase.
Firewalker has decent range, low burst and a huge aoe. Firewalker does quite some damage, but only with its fire field. This means it does still do quite some damage against buildings over time, but units which walk out of the fire don’t take much damage. Firewalker can cover quite some area and does interrupt repair of units and defence with its dot. This is why Firewalker is effective, even when it is not dealing a huge amount of damage and has nearly no burst damage. Firewalker is especially strong vs spiders and other low hp units as it can kill entire groups with its range and huge aoe.
Emissary has a huge range, decent burst, high movement speed and decent aoe. Emissary basically works like a long range Skirmisher. Due to its aoe it is able to hit radar dots and even moving units. Emissary has enough damage to kill most Skirmisher in one hit, most Riots die in two hits, while they can’t do anything against it. Emissary even works as a counter Artillery. Countering Emissary is very hard because it has a long range and nearly has the same speed as Raiders.
Tremor: A (big teams S)
Tremor has a huge range, high dps, high aoe and can flatten terrain. Tremor does create a no-go-zone for anything that is not an assault. Tremor is able to drain the shield of a shieldball in a matter of seconds while standing extremely far away. The reason why Tremor is only S in big teams is, that Tremor is more effective in higher density fights, as it is unable to kill specific targets e.g. Stinger in a reasonable amount of time.
Envoy has huge range, high hp, decent burst and high aoe. Envoy is Emissary on a ship. What changed is that it has more hp, less movement speed and a tiny bit more range. It can still hit moving targets, radar dots and works as a long range Skirmisher against most surface sea units.
Imp has very high movement speed, idle cloak, is all terrain, and has a huge aoe. Imp excels at stunning entire groups of raiders (multiple Imps even work against Assault!) when placed beforehand and can turn a game around when properly followed up. While you can’t just run on raiders without dieing, you can engage skirmisher without cloak due to its very high speed. Imp has to be carefully used or you will stun your own units. Imp can be screened for with low cost units and sometimes it randomly dies against artillery fire.
Iris has mediocre movement speed, radar jamming and area cloak. Iris is very powerful in combination with bombs, raiders and assaults as they no longer take a beating from longer ranged units while closing the distance. Iris energy cost is high and can be screened for and is often easily found when suddenly units appear. Iris is usually built in mid to lategame as units get more range and you need a way to close the gap.
Snitch has very high movement speed, idle cloak and huge aoe. Snitch is the explosive counterpart to Imp. While snitch does about half of Imps stun damage, it doesn’t need unit follow up to kill your enemy. Snitch is especially useful for blowing up shieldballs and groups of raiders which dare to get too close.
Dominatrix has mediocre movement speed, mediocre range and a capture ray. Dominatrix is the definition of snowball unit, as you can steal your opponents’ units instead of killing them. Dominatrix doesn’t feel like it does anything most of the time due to its insanely long capture time. But if it works you can easily crush your opponent. The reason why Dominatrix isn’t built anymore is, that it loses against Raiders, Skirmisher, Artillery and takes a long time to capture Assaults.
Widow has good movement speed, a huge vision radius and a high burst emp damage. Widow is very good as scout because it is all terrain and a very small decloak radius. Widow is especially good at stunning high value targets and riots for 30 sec. Widow is limited through its high energy cost, very low hp and melee range. To counter Widow, you need to have low cost units around more valuable targets as then Widow has no chance to engage without instantly dieing.
Placeholder has decent movement speed, mediocre range and a good aoe. Placeholder does not deal damage unless you catch a big cluster of units which bump into each other. Placeholder is especially useful against raiders and assaults making them stuck and an easy target for skirmisher and artillery. Placeholder can even capture Gunships if they are slowed. Placeholder can’t shoot trough shield and is usually beaten by artillery.
Jugglenaut has very high hp, very low movement speed and two gravity guns. Jugglenaut is unable to push defence as it does deal no damage against them unless you use your aoe dmg jump. Jugglenaut can kill most units using the attractive gravity mode and is especially strong vs light mass units like spiders. Jugglenaut even works against higher mass units as it makes them unable to move anymore. One thing it keep in mid is, that it can even attract air units like Likho, rendering them unable to leave.
Skuttle has low movement speed, good aoe and high bust damage. Skuttle really suffers from its high decloak radius as it is unable to get close to many units. Usually units can even shoot it in its jump and kill it before it reaches its destination. In addition to that Skuttle has high energy cost. There are some situations where Skuttle can hit but it is often not worth the effort, even when it does deal a lot of damage.
Limpet has very high movement speed, decent hp for a bomb and aoe slow damage with low normal damage. Limpet does not deal any friendly fire damage and can be used inside your army without having to worry about it exploding. Limpet does not deal enough damage to actually kill units and the slow often is not enough for other amph units to catch up due to their low speed. Limpet is actually a good unit but not worth facswitching for and does not work without a fast high dps unit.
Lobster has decent hp, low movement speed and a unit launcher. While Lobster usually can’t move up to enemy units and launch them into your army because of its low speed, using two Lobsters to get one close to your enemy can work. With this you can steal enemy Striders, Crabes and get them into your defence. Throwing your amph army, especially Scallop with Limpet can work out but is often not worth the metal investment and does force an all in which can lose your entire army. Other factorys like shieldbots can use Lobsters way better to speed up army movements while protecting the Lobster itself. Lobster has some niche usability with Shogun as it can throw it on land and put it on top of a hill.
Djinn has decent hp, decent movement speed and can teleport units over the entire map. While this ability sounds totally awesome, Djinn has to be at the exit point to teleport the unit to. This means that it usually is very exposed or leaves your own front without any/enough units anymore. Djinn is usually built when high value Striders like Paladin or Detriment are terraformed into the ground as it can retrieve them back to your base.
Swift has the highest movement speed in the game, a 5x speed boost D-Gun, good vision radius, a low burst missile and low dps laser blaster. Swift is a multirole support unit. With its speed it can intercept bombers and Gunships over the entire map in 1-2 seconds and often kill them with a salvo of burst missiles. At the same time they can kill nearly any unsupported raider as the laser blaster can hit ground units too. Swift are the best lategame scout as using the booster makes most projectiles and Anti Air miss them, which allows them to reach deep into the enemy base. While Swift can lose against dedicated Anti Air units, it covers a lot of roles and is the most used unit of the air factory.
Raptor has high movement speed, decent hp and mediocre dps. While Raptor is slightly superior to Swift in a direct confrontation it has no other capabilities then fighting against air. Raptor gets overshadowed by Swift as it is considerably slower to react to enemy air units and does lose against Trident. Other then that Raptor is definitely a solid choice against most other air units when properly positioned beforehand.
Raven has high movement speed, decent hp and a decent burst bomb. Raven can kill most Skirmisher and Artillery with 1 or 2hits. While it can threaten Commanders too, they are considerably harder to kill with the recent hp buff. Ravens can even bomb Gunships and are sometimes used in suicidal attacks against e.g. Singularity Reactors, Trinity or Superweapons. Raven even have the ability to bomb underwater units. Raven is no longer S Tier as the recent metal cost increase and hp buffs to other units did considerably weaken it.
Phoenix has high movement speed, low hp, a low damage and low burn damage aoe bomb. Phoenix has enough damage to kill most raiders in one run and enough aoe to hit multiple targets. Phoenix suffers from being overshadowed by Swift which can constantly attack until the raider swarm is dead. Phoenix has low hp which makes bombing at the front usually a suicidal attack while only dealing about 300 to max 525 damage. Currently Phoenix only has niche in bombing Wind Generators or larger groups of Raiders and low hp Riots.
Thunderbird has very high movement speed, decent hp and an insanely high burst disarm damage attack. Thunderbird is one of the best support units in the game which can disable an entire front/army for over 16 seconds. Followed up with a swarm of raiders the only result is total annihilation. Thunderbird can even stun very heavy units with using one simple trick. You have to toggle fly state to land and press stop right over the unit. This results in Thunderbird staying at one position and dealing a total of 52000 disarm damage, which can disarm anything smaller than Detriment. The only thing holding Thunderbird back is the need of follow up as it does not deal any damage itself.
Likho has very high movement speed, high hp for a bomber, a high damage bomb with good aoe. Likho is ridiculously strong as it can hit any unit in the game including other bombers and Likhos themselves, as it has a fast flying, high aoe, homing missile. Likho can annihilate entire groups of units with one or two hits and even kill most Anti Air and retreat without dieing. The reason for that is that it has high hp and a good amount of range which means it does not have to dive deep into enemy Anti Air. Likho is hard to kill with any Anti Air value below Likho itself and is one of the few reasons why Artillery doesn’t completely take over the mid and lategame.
Sparrow: C (B when morphed from Radar Tower)
Sparrow has high movement speed, low hp and does only provide vison. Sparrow is the weaker version of Owl. Is somewhat useful when morphed from a Radar Tower in 1v1 but if you have access to an air factory you should nearly always build Owl instead.
Owl has extremely high movement speed, decent hp, radar jamming, radar, sonar and ridiculously high vision range. Owl is the best unit to provide intel near the frontline without being to close to the enemy. Owl is even able to be somewhat close to Anti Air as they often can’t spot it, because it does jam radar for the enemy. This means that enemy artillery now needs real vision or they won’t be able to properly fire. Owl is extremely valuable on sea maps as it even provides sonar, meaning it helps spotting underwater units. While Owl does have an energy cost, it is neglectable low.
Blastwing has very high movement speed, idle cloak, very low hp and an aoe flame explosion. Blastwing is especially good in the early game as it can 1hit mex and destroy surrounding energy with its aoe. Even just shutting down multiple Solar Collectors for 20 sec can really hurt the early economy of a player. Blastwing can even be used to block Constructors from building mex when placed on top of mex spots. The constructor will be unable to build because a unit is blocking the placement and does repeatedly try to build because he can’t see the Blastwing. This can be avoided by moving over the Blastwing and blowing it up. Blastwing is very bad against most units and should not be used in mid to lategame.
Gnat has low hp, very high movement speed and very high emp dps. Gnat has no damage but an insanely strong emp attack. About 5 Gnats can even stun heavy units like Cyclops in a few seconds. Due it its inaccuracy it tends to miss raiders with about 50% chance and should only be used against Raiders and Riots when they are overwhelmingly stunned as you will lose your Gnats very quickly. Gnat can even hit air targets and is one of the best counters against Krow.
Locust is very fast, has out of combat regen but mediocre dps. While Locust is usually unable to fight with units with the same metal value, they are able to decide when to strike and can force advantageous engagements. Due to Locust being able to hit even air units they can really snowball hard. But when they get destroyed once, you usually can’t build up a strong enough locust swarm anymore.
Harpy has mediocre movement speed for an air unit, decent hp and a homing missile with normal and slow damage. Harpy works especially well against Raiders as it usually 1 or 2hit them, but you have to watch out against swarms as they can get under the Harpy while it is reloading and kill it. Harpy can work against air too, but due to its low actual damage it will lose against dedicated anti air units.
Nimus has low movement speed for an air unit, good hp, very high range and mediocre dps. Nimbus is the Gunship Artillery as it can even outrange defence like Stinger. Due to its inaccuracy it is considerably weaker against small anti air units which are even able to dodge most projectiles on fight command. Nimbus is even able to hit other Air units and can stay out of range of most anti air. Nimbus does need an insanely long time to kill a Razor which is one reason why Nimbus is not S Tier.
Revenant has mediocre movement speed for an air unit, good hp, low range and high burst. Revenant is very good at hit and run tactics as it can 1 or 2hit most enemy units including Anti Air. Having two Revenants roaming around can be a nightmare for many players as they are tanky and fast enough to even go in and kill Artillery. Revenant is vulnerable against most flex Anti Air and especially weak against moderator with placeholder as a slowed Revenant gets stuck in the black hole.
Krow has mediocre movement speed for an air unit, very high hp, decent dps and a high damage burst D-Gun. Krow is very strong at crushing mediocre fortified defence or Assaults with its cluster bomb D-Gun. While it is using the cluster bomb you can’t really maneuver the Krow anymore and usually start to drift. Krow is especially powerful when repaired multiple times as it is very hard to kill with its high hp pool. Krow has to be careful when close to raiders as they can go under it, which makes Krow unable to fight back when the D-Gun is on cooldown.
Trident has mediocre hp, mediocre movement speed for an air unit and decent burst volley damage. Trident is very good when fighting directly against other air units as they even win against the higher costing Raptor. Tridents are considerably slow to react to fast attacks and can be outmaneuvered.
Charon has extremely high movement speed, low hp and can transport light units. Depending on the unit mass Charon gets slowed down and dropping units mid-flight usually takes 50% of their hp. Charon is often used for Riot drops in enemy bases or equipped with snitches to bomb artillery or skirmisher. Due to easily dieing to Anti Air and not providing any battle power, Charon is only rarely seen.
Hercules has very high movement speed, mediocre hp, low dps and can transport even heavy units. Hercules is usually used to transport heavy striders in maps with walls, many hills or when the base filled with too much stuff to move to the front. Hercules suffers even more from speed loss as heavy units usually have high mass values. Sometimes Hercules is used to pick up enemy commanders or heavy units when they are stunned. The units have to be stunned as moving interrupts the transport from picking up a unit. Picked up units are unable to fire and can be considered stunned.
Class: Anti Air (dps is always based on cost here)[Spoiler]
Gremlin has high dps (0.433), decent movement speed, mediocre range, no burst and cloak. While Gremlin has low range, it can compensate it with its cloak, which can pressure enemy Air or Gunships players even when they are on the other side of the map. Gremlin can also be used as a scout as it decloak radius is low and it has high vison range.
Vandal has high dps (0.400), decent movement speed, high range and no really considerable burst. Vandal is very cheap and is very effective vs Gunships in the early game as they can cover a lot of ground very fast. While Vandal does deal considerable dps it often fails at actually killing air units before they drop their bomb or retreat.
Crasher has mediocre dps (0.332), high movement speed, mediocre range and 290 (1,32 per metal) burst damage. Crasher is the fastest ground Anti Air and can often kill a bomber before it gets too close or stay in range to get out another missile.
Flail has low dps (0.240), high movement speed, mediocre range and 375 (1,25 per metal) burst damage. Flail is similar to Crasher as both are fast and have high burst damage. This means that Flail is good against bombers too, while the dps is more often not enough to stop Gunships. There seems to be a general misconception (at least was for me) that Flail does deal aoe damage which is not true.
Tarantula has mediocre dps (0.361), is a bit slow, has very high range and 260 (0,684 per metal) Burst damage. Tarantula excels at staying out of range of most air units. If any kind of Air unit dares to get into Tarantulas range it has to expect to be hit at least two or three times. Tarantula are neiter good or bad at burst/dps, but when reached at least 4 they create big no go zone for most bombers.
Toad has mediocre (0.328) (together high 0.484) dps, is a bit slow, has mediocre (very high) range, no burst damage, high hp and a jump. You might have noticed that the introduction is weird. Toad has two different weapons one high dps laser battery with mediocre range and a low dps auto cannon with very high range. The main problem here is that the auto cannon does only hit about 33% (tested against not moving flying Locust). This means that while its range is big and dps should be high, it actually is only mediocre. The reason why Toad is not built, is that Jumpjet units like Moderator and Jugglenaut usually are better at killing air then Toad.
Ettin has high dps (0.450), high movement speed, high range and aoe. Ettin is absolutely amazing at killing Gunships due to its high dps, speed and aoe. While it is decent against bombers too, you usually need burst to keep them away from you.
Angler has low dps (0.277), low movement speed, mediocre range and insanely high burst damage with 600 (3,33 per metal). Four Anglers are enough to 1hit a Likho even when it tries to instantly bomb them. Anglers are the true nightmare for bombers, but if their ammo runs out you have 12 seconds to attack anything you want. Angler is a very low S tier, it would be better if its range was a bit higher or it would be a bit faster.
Zephyr has mediocre dps (0.318), decent movement speed and very high range. Zephyr has the same problem as Toad, its weapon sometimes just misses (in this case it hits about 80%). It is especially awful at hitting bombers which are turning causing them to hit barely at all. But if they hit, they are still decent Anti Air.
Class: Constructor (build power is always based on cost here, e.g. Caretaker has 0.0555)[Spoiler]
Conjurer has high build power (0.0417), decent movement speed, low range radar jamming, personal and area cloak. Conjurer is especially good at taking far mex in 1v1 as you opponent won’t expect them and doesn’t see your Constructor moving. Conjurer can even provide a very small area cloak field for slower units like Reaver, Knight and surprise enemies with Imp and Glaive. Conjurer is a scary addon to the cloakbot factory as now units can more easily get close if they are not screened for.
Convict has high build power (0.0417), decent movement speed and a shield. Convict is surprisingly tanky with its shield. In 1v1 you can usually put one Bandit below its shield and beat 2 or even 3 raiders with its hp advantage. Convict can even contribute some shield in a shieldball while it is reclaiming at the frontline.
Mason has high build power (0.0417) and high movement speed. Mason has nothing special so that’s all I can write here.
Quill has mediocre build power (0.0385) and high movement speed. Quill is a little bit faster than Mason but has less build power per metal cost, which mean that both are pretty equal.
Wasp has mediocre build power (0.0313) and high movement speed. With the recent buffs to its health, speed and cost Wasp is finally a worthy contender to other constructors. While it has considerably less build power per metal it makes up for it with its speed and ability to fly.
Crane has low build power (0.0200), very high movement speed and very low hp. Because Crane is so fragile that it dies to most Anti Air in one hit or two seconds you often cannot use it to reclaim at the frontline. While Crane has very high movement speed, it does have very low build power which makes it a considerably worse constructor.
Weaver has high build power (0.0441), decent movement speed and a radar. Weaver is one of the better Constructors as it is all terrain and has good build power. While it has radar, you should still build a Radar Tower as it is cheap and has more range.
Constable has high build power (0.0417), decent movement speed, a slow damage weapon with a tiny bit of normal damage and a jump. Constable can be used as a support unit in the front due to its slow beam and can beat two fleas. Constable is close to S tier, but has noticeable less build power then most constructors.
Welder has mediocre build power (0.0375), decent movement speed, very high hp per cost and a low dps weapon. Welder can actually fight back and win against most single raiders and even against two glaives or two bandits. It can survive against artillery fire for a reasonable amount of time and does still have decent build power.
Conch has very high build power (0.0500) and is a bit slow. While it has very good build power, it does not have any special ability (if you don’t count underwater regen) and is very slow. This is why it is barely not S tier.
Mariner has mediocre build power (0.0375), high movement speed and decent hp. Nothing really special about Mariner so that’s it.
Athena has low build power (0.0250), very high movement speed, cloak, can resurrect and build a variation of units. While resurrect is definitely a very powerful ability, your opponent often uses units which are not really useful for you right now. The cost for building a Strider Hub and an Athena is so high that it usually is not worth losing the frontline for. While Athena can work as a Factory, it is considerably weaker because you can’t place rally points, units do not automatically join auto groups and the unit variation does only somewhat work together.
Ultimatum has low movement speed, low hp per cost, cloak, the highest dps and burst in the game. There are only a few units which Ultimatum cannot 1hit e.g. Krow, Paladin and Detriment. This unit is the reason why Striders aren’t completely overwhelming the mid-late game of Zero-k. Because Ultimatum got considerably better at hitting Raiders, which now need a bigger group to kill Ultimatum, it is S tier and not A tier. The decloak radius is big enough that even a small screening with low cost units can stop Ultimatum, but even then, Ultimatum just perfectly does its job when it gets close enough.
Scorpion has very high hp, cloak, a does good dps, has a lightning weapon and an emp D-Gun. Scorpion is the definition of perfect allrounder. It can fight against basically anything as its weapons do instantly hit against Raider, it can get close to Skirmisher and Artillery, and Assaults or Striders can be stunned with the D-Gun. Even air units like Likho can be stunned using the D-Gun which makes Scorpion very powerful in many situations. Scorpion can be pushed by groups of Assaults or Raiders as it can only aoe stun for 3 seconds. Scorpion is especially vulnerable when decloaked, because it is very slow and can be barraged by artillery.
Dante has very high hp, very high dps, a rocket salvo D-Gun and multiple weapons for mid to close range combat. You should never fight a Dante head on with most units in the game as it melts everything down which gets close to it. It even has considerable range with is rocket launcher and can screen for Ultimatums with its D-Gun. The D-Gun removes the rocket launcher while reloading but fires fire rockets everywhere in front of the Dante. This can even kill most Skirmisher and even Artillery, as the rockets can fly further due to inaccuracy of the attack. Most useful units against Dante are Cyclops, Lance, Widow, Air/Gunships or Ultimatum.
Merlin: A (big teams S)
Merlin has low hp per cost, very high range and an aoe rocket salvo with 8800 Burst damage. Merlin is absolutely amazing at deleting what it is aiming at. The reason why Merlin is only S tier in big teams is, that there usually aren’t many targets which are worth waiting its 30 sec reload for. In addition to that, Merlin is way better protected against raiders or other push attacks in higher density games which results in it staying alive and attritioning the enemy to death. Due to its low hp pool, it can easily be killed by Scythes, bombers or anything which is able to get close to it.
Funnelweb has mediocre hp for a strider, a good amount of build power and an extremely high hp shield. Funnelwebs biggest weakness is that it takes a long time to start noticing its impact, as it has no weapons and starts with an empty shield. Funnelweb has very low build power per cost (0,013) and its shield only regenerates when it wasn’t hit for 10 seconds. While both mentioned things don’t seem very good, the shield and build power combination works very well. Funnelweb has even more max shield then Aspis for the same cost (18000 vs 23000) while being considerably more tanky. This means that Funnelweb can not only guard pushing units, but run to the front, reclaim and retreat. Funnelweb can even block Nukes (and barely survive), especially when quickly terraformed up on a spike to protect your units without an Antinuke.
Paladin has extremely high hp, a mid range lightning weapon, a high range high burst laser and an aoe emp damage rocket salvo D-Gun. Paladin is especially good against medium to heavy units as it can stun them with its D-Gun and keep them stunlocked with the lightning cannon. Paladin works best if it is treated like an Artillery or Skirmisher as it has no aoe damage and can be overwhelmed by smaller units if not supported. Paladin is often easier to deal with instead of multiple smaller Striders as counters like Ultimatum, Widow, Gnat + Hercules, Terraform and any unit/building with more range make more cost against bigger Striders. But if a Paladin is properly supported one of the only choices remaining might be to use two Shockleys and hope to stun it for 45 sec.
Detriment: B (sea maps A)
Detriment has the highest hp in the game, a mediocre range Anti Air laser battery, mediocre range gauss and laser weapons and a high range high dps missile launcher with good aoe. Detriment is very good against medium units. Raiders and heavy units are able to overrun Detriment as it has basically no aoe besides gauss penetrating and missiles which can’t properly hit moving units. Detriment has very low dps per metal cost which makes it bad against other heavy units. While Detriment can survive most encounters and is able to go back to repair, you often can’t push fast enough with it to close out games when it is on the front. Usually building a superweapon is a better choice than hoping for Detriment to succeed. Detriment is better on sea maps due to having gauss weapons, as there are no good underwater anti heavy units and Ultimatum is permanently decloaked underwater.
Shogun has decent hp for a Strider, mediocre movement speed, very high range and mediocre dps. Shogun has an even higher range then Merlin, but has less bust damage. While it does have decent aoe, some projectiles tend to miss its target due to inaccuracy. Shogun is very good against other Artillery as it can 1hit and outrange them. While Shogun can be killed by underwater units or Gunships, it usually stays far enough in your own defence to be killed.
Reef has decent hp for a Strider, high movement speed, an air rearm pad, can produce drones and has a stockpileable disarm missile. Reef is in an abysmal state right now as it does nearly nothing at all. The drones are usually unable to kill anything even when waiting for the whole swarm to rebuild. While a frontline Airpad can help for faster bombing runs, it often makes bombers more vulnerable against enemy Anti Air if you don’t properly pay attention. The stockpileable disarm missile is just not usable on sea, as there are usually no heavy fortifications or units to hit. Even when you hit enemy units with it you have to at least disarm 3000 metal value to get the army value equal again. To top this off, you have to pay 150 metal per disarm missile and wait 30 seconds to stockpile them. This makes Reef one of most useless units in the game right now.
Scylla has low hp for a Strider, high movement speed, has ridiculously high range and can stockpile high burst missiles. Scylla is basically a moving Eos producing Missile Silo. While you still have to pay 600 metal per missile, you can usually blow up high value targets like Singularity Reactors and Artillery with its missiles. Scylla can fire its missiles very fast, meaning that it can even overpower shields if enough missiles are stockpiled. Common counters are e.g. Ravens because of its low hp or depending on the sea depth even terraforming it up. This makes Scylla unable to move and vulnerable against most units and especially Artillery. Scylla often has a value of over 6000 metal due to having stockpiled many missiles and should be killed if there is a chance to do so.
Eos is a tactical missile with good aoe and high burst damage. Eos is usually the choice against anything you cannot reach otherwise e.g. Singularity Reactor, Big Bertha, Cerberus, Anti Nuke and superweapons. Eos can be blocked by having high enough terraform in front of important buildings and only work if you can surprise your enemy. Sometimes you can even get a lucky hit into a shield ball when Aspis dropped below 3500 hp, as then the missile goes right trough.
Quake is a terraform smoothing missile with even higher range then all other missiles from the Missile Silo. While Quake should remove terraform in front of high value targets, making it vulnerable with Eos as follow up, it often does not do its job properly. While Quake does smooth a good amount of terrain, it can be completely countered by placing a structure on terraformed terrain. It often happens that people sink high value targets. This counters Quake as well, because it can only remove terraformed walls. Quake is hard countered by Aspis as it makes it unable to fly trough. In addition to that players can often terraform the wall back before the incoming Eos is able to hit. Two changes which could make Quake (more) useful would be letting it penetrate shield and having a repeated smoothing effect or having it block terraform for a certain amount of time.
Shockley is a high aoe, extremely high emp damage missile. Shockley is strong against nearly anything it can hit. It is usually used against Anti Nukes, because it does fly in a high arc and can’t be properly stopped by terraform. At the same time, it does have enough aoe and emp damage to often stun shieldballs and even Striders for up to 45 seconds. Shockley can even be used as a last resort against enemy superweapons and can often stall long enough to prepare an assault against the impending doom. However up to two Shockleys can be blocked by a Funnelweb. This can surprise an enemy, especially when they tried to nuke a stunned Anti Nuke.
Inferno is a very high aoe, low dps napalm missile. Inferno does not deal a lot of damage and can only kill targets with very low hp. Inferno is often used against a cluster of cloaked Phantoms, a big Wind Generator farm or just to cripple base build power and mex. Because Inferno does only deal a considerable amount of damage when units stay in the napalm field, it only has limited usability.
Made by: Manu12
Worktime: about 18h
Word document: 27 pages