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Updated for, June 2024


S Tier: I would happily make a new factory to make only this unit

A Tier: I feel good when I make this unit

B Tier: I feel OK about making this unit

C Tier: I am a bit unhappy if I have to make this unit, other factories have better options

D Tier: I am quite unhappy to make this unit

F Tier: I do not make this unit, and you should not make it either

Unclassifiable: Too weird or specialized to give a sensible grade

Ratings are for a mid-size teams game on a land map unless otherwise indicated. 1v1 ratings would be different.


A Tier

Convict: Borderline S tier. Basically a combat unit in its own right, between supporting Felon and protecting its own turrets.

Welder: Also arguably S tier. Strong at all stages, although the cost is a little annoying early game.

Constable: Very good early game constructor. Fragile and inefficient in late game.

Conjurer: As a constructor it is B tier at best... but it enables some cloak shenanigans.

B Tier

Weaver: Sometimes you need to build things on a hill.

Mason, Quill: Meh.

C Tier

Conch: On land it is slow and expensive. Spoiler alert: it is in a different tier on water maps.

Wasp: Useless as a combat constructor, but decent at expanding if it doesn't die to Swift.

D Tier

Crane: I guess expand with this if you absolutely have to... but it's pretty ass.

Strider Constructors

Funnelweb: A Tier, although its construction is less important than its shield.

Athena: Unclassifiable. Practical efficacy lies anywhere from A to F tier, depending on the vanity of the person using it.


A Tier

Recon: Does not die to Placeholder. Dies a lot to Lance though. S tier if it enables expansion for you (like on Quicksilver). To avoid throwing your computer out a window when you get Lobstered, this chassis is mandatory on lava maps.

B Tier

Guardian: Dies to Placeholder, but at least it has HP so it's less likely to die to Lance. The free drone is quite handy, use set-target to tell it where to go and scout.

Engineer: Dies to Placeholder and Lance. The blueprint-stealing tool has some useful applications though; for example, if you are playing air grab a land constructor.

Strike: Dies to Placeholder and Lance. However, in a meta where Engineer is popular, Strike is the best commander at running down and killing Engineers.

Raiders etc.

A Tier

Scorcher: When you need sheer DPS, accept no substitutes.

Glaive, Bandit: Throwing some of these into almost any army composition makes it better. Good screening, good DPS.

B Tier

Kodachi, Pyro: Very good early game, but they lose value a lot quicker than the A tier raiders. I have a serious skill issue with both of these units.

Scythe: I also have a skill issue with this unit. At its best this is maddening. At its worst you are just punting metal. YMMV.

Dagger: This does not have the DPS to do a lot of raider jobs, and Hover suffers for it sometimes. Still, it's good in a lot of direct raider matchups and gives planes a nasty surprise.

C Tier

Blitz: Pretty poor in low numbers outside the very early game. A big ball of these can be scary, but eventually they tend to run into something they can't stunlock and then they get mauled.

Duck: A bit less efficient than the other bot raiders, unless there is water involved.

Anti-raider / Escort

Bolas: B Tier. If the meta shifts this could be A tier again. Of the units in this role, retains most value against non-raiders.

Venom, Archer: B Tier. Decent, but loses a lot of value when the other team is no longer making many raiders.


Flea: S Tier. Has no competition at its job.

Dart: A Tier. Maybe a generous grade, but this is surprisingly versatile. Gives vision, baits shots, sets up for Scorcher.

Puppy: A Tier. Placed in this list for lack of a better classification. If you need to deny your opponents reclaim quickly, this is the tool for the job.

Dirtbag: B Tier. S tier at inflicting EMOTIONAL DAMAGE. But if you want to attack, the Dirtbag gets in your way as much as the opposition.

Skirmishers and Fire Support

A Tier

Fencer and Scalpel: Good cookie-cutter early game units.

Buoy: Beats a pretty big variety of things while taking minimal attrition.

Felon: Obviously this has the potential to be really good, but the style it fits into is pretty inflexible.

B Tier

Recluse: A tier on some maps. Good damage, but a little too flimsy for my taste.

Moderator: When you are ahead this is A tier. When you are behind this is terrible.

Crab: Extremely strong if it is not countered... but everybody knows its counters.

Rogue: Really, really bad at defending itself. Decent DPS if it gets to do its thing.

Bulkhead: Rating subject to change, since I haven't encountered this much in games post-patch yet. In games I spectated it looks decent though.

C Tier

Ronin: Occasionally good in the early game. Gets outscaled VERY quickly though.

D Tier

Dominatrix: Overrated. You have to have a lot or they don't pose a meaningful threat, and even if you do have a lot they tend to die all at once.


A Tier

Reaver: Range is a bit of a liability here, but this chews up raiders quite nicely and has strong synergy with cloak/Lobster/Charon.

Mace, Ogre: Expensive, good at bullying in the early-midgame, tend to be a bit too flimsy late-game. A few of these go a long way.

B Tier

Redback: Gets kited by a few too many things, and not as explosive as Reaver if it gets mobility help, so this doesn't quite make A tier. Quite strong if it gets a good fight though.

Ripper: Unexciting, but it gets the job done.

Outlaw: Does the job it is supposed to do for a shieldball.

Dante: If you need a bunch of small (maybe cloaked) units fried at a moderate distance, Dante is your guy. A bit too fragile to be used as a generic unit.

C Tier

Scallop: This would probably be D tier if it wasn't in the same factory as Lobster.

Claymore: Occasionally solves problems for Hover on land. Remember that they can shoot over terraform for no particularly good reason.


S Tier

Cyclops: Difficult to kill, effective against almost anything that costs more than 250 metal and enters its range. An absolute chad of a unit.

A Tier

Minotaur: Has enough HP that a commitment is always required to kill it. What more do you want?

Thug: Good at protecting other units that actually do something.

Jugglenaut: Needs to be controlled carefully, and with some feeling for the occasionally unintuitive physics mechanics.

B Tier

Halberd: This is fine. Not amazing. But fine. Can spot for Lance if you don't have air, but it is rather unsubtle at that task.

Jack: In the right situation it's incredible. Otherwise it chases things and makes sad melee noises.

Grizzly: Good if you are fighting things it cleanly one-hits. Can be quite dubious otherwise.

C Tier

Knight: Strong if it gets a fight it actually wants. But being slow makes that difficult.

D Tier

Hermit, Ravager: Theoretically decent stats (especially post-buff) but "light-weight assault" is just not a very powerful role.


S Tier

Lance: I don't think that Lance is game breaking, but it has almost no competition in the "delete one unit at a distance" category.

Impaler: Less versatile than Lance, but peerless at prying open defences from a safe distance.

A Tier

Phantom: Lance's only real competition in its role, and a very good unit in its own right.

Firewalker: Clunky, but unless you are willing to spend for Dante this is the best way to clean up small units and detect cloakers at a distance.

B Tier

Sling: Reasonable early game option. Some people like to make these in bulk in the midgame, but in my experience the blob gets punished eventually.

Badger: Occasionally somebody makes this look really good. Most of the time it is the better-at-decloaking but worse-at-killing cousin of Firewalker.

Merlin: Fragile and has an unfortunate tendency towards friendly fire. Sometimes the big old missile barrage is just what you need though.

C Tier

Emissary: I want to rate this higher, but it is a hard unit to make work in a Lance and Impaler world. Terraform helps a lot against Lance at least.


Tremor: Make this when faced with bad terrain (typically terraform) or sometimes against mass shields. Otherwise not worth the metal.

Anti-Heavy and Bombs

S Tier

Widow: Unmatched impact for cost.

Snitch: Combined with areacloak this solves an awful lot of difficult problems. Even without a cloak you can sometimes get these to connect for big damage, if you're wily enough.

A Tier

Imp: Arguably better than Snitch in the early game; the spider movetype is more useful and you can hide one under a commander. Late game you would prefer to be killing things though.

Limpet: Suffers from being in a slow and unpopular factory, but this can turn the tide of a midgame fight.

Racketeer: The safest but lowest-impact unit on the anti-heavy list.

Scorpion: This unit is NOT an assault. This unit is NOT a raider. Stop using it like one. Quite poor at defending itself if caught out of position, so don't let that happen.

B Tier

Ultimatum: I can't get this to connect reliably, but when it does...

D Tier

Skuttle: Incredibly unreliable. I would only build this in desperation.

Support and Utility

S Tier

Lobster: From rescuing stunned units to facilitating an assault to throwing enemies in lava, the utility is endless.

A Tier

Iris, Aspis: Maybe these should be S tier, but I do sometimes find that these give you a false sense of security.

Placeholder: Potentially completely broken, but its range and HP are poor enough that something generally manages to kill it.

Djinn: I get far more use out of this in a logistics role than its sneak attack applications, but either way this is quite useful once you can afford the price.

Charon: Mostly for offensive drops, but occasionally this is good in a logistics role also.

B Tier

Hercules: Not a fan of most uses this gets put to, but occasionally you do need one.


S Tier

Swift: Intercepts bombers, holds its own against most other air, scouts, cleans up raiders in its spare time. Defines how the game of Zero-K is played.

Likho: There are very few things this is not good against.

Owl: Knowledge is power, and Owl provides it. Even without the jammer this is S tier.

Thunderbird: After the HP buff I'm going to go ahead and put this in S tier again.

A Tier

Odin: Forces the other team to build a pretty annoying amount of AA if they want to keep their Singus. I suspect the best uses of the shield sidearm have not been figured out yet.

Phoenix: The new generically-decent bomber. Keep a few around even in the late game for targets that aren't worth spending a Likho on.

B Tier

Raptor: I genuinely think this is OK, if your job is to fight Swifts and gunships with help rather than chasing down bombers. I would always have some Swifts though.

Magpie: Good against a range of likely early game targets, considerably weaker later. Probably best on high-wind maps to offset the large rearm cost.

Raven: Not the game-defining unit it once was, but there is nothing wrong with the Raven of today. Does the job it is designed to do.


Sparrow: Very specific usecases as a jammer, decloaker or scout-without-a-planefac. If you need it for one of those things, build it. Otherwise don't.


A Tier

Revenant: I'm not terribly good with this, but it is getting popular as of late.

B Tier

Trident: Really quite good against planes, Swift in particular.

Harpy: The workhorse of Gunship factory.

Gnat: Niche, but if your opponent slacks on AA to protect their strider this is the punishment. Also has some early game uses.

Blastwing: Build these if you see a good target.

C Tier

Nimbus: I don't think that the meta is doing this any favours at present, but it's still decent at putting on pressure.

Locust: Doesn't seem very good at the moment, but maybe it's just unpopular. I could never get this to work even when it was objectively strong, so how should I know?

D Tier

Krow: No longer quite so bad that you are actively throwing the game by making it, but actually makes a positive contribution to winning in very few games.

Anti-Air (mobile and static)

A Tier

Angler: The best anti-bomber AA at anything like its price point.

Razor: Single-handedly makes Gunship a bad factory.

B Tier

Ettin: A tier if you need its area of effect attack. C tier if you don't.

Crasher, Tarantula, Vandal: All quite serviceable missile-based AA. You need a really gigantic blob of Vandal which can be awkward.

Toad: In any other factory this would get built a lot more, but in Jumpfac it competes with Moderator and Jugglenaut.

Artemis: This shuts out enemy air in a way no other AA does... but it is an expensive, flimsy target.

Chainsaw: An unexciting compromise between cost and impact. It's okay.

C Tier

Thresher: Static, unarmoured and short range is a pretty bad combination. Ettin is almost always better.

Flail: Below average, but not awful.

D Tier

Gremlin: This disappoints me every time I build it. You get to scout and ambush with it, but its effective damage is just... really bad.

Hacksaw: D-minus. At least it kills Phoenix now. But even considering that, it only outperforms Newton in a situation where Newton is not physically possible to build (on water).

Other Static Defences

A Tier

Stinger: This very nearly makes it into S tier, but its matchup against Lance and Impaler in particular is just a little bit too bad. Among several other roles, Stinger props up the bad-skirmisher factories in the early to mid game.

Lotus: Boring, reliable and effective.

B Tier

Picket: Mostly used to outrange Lotus these days, and sometimes you need the flex-AA aspect.

Newton: Excellent against bombers, and quite decent at defending against riots.

Faraday, Gauss: These might go into A tier if not for the "instantly blasted by Lance when they try to do something" issue.

Cerberus: A decent option to strangle out the other team when you are in a sound position. If the other team has the eco to throw tacnukes at you at will the value goes down a lot.

C Tier

Stardust: Plonk this down somewhere that you expect a bunch of raiders to try to flank. Gets outranged by too many things to be a good frontline turret.

Desolator: I think the present meta doesn't favour Desolator but it's not inherently awful. Use it with terraform if you are going to use it.

D Tier

Lucifer: This is a lot of metal to spend on something that dies to Impaler.

Tactical Missiles

S Tier

Shockley, Eos: These solve problems that nothing else in the game, short of a superweapon, can solve.

B Tier

Inferno: Stop firing these at shields and other stuff it is useless against, I beg of you. Properly used this is fine.

Zeno: Throw these at armies in the late game if you have nothing better to do.


Quake: You'll know when you need this. Otherwise quite useless.


S Tier

Trinity: At worst, forces single points of failure on your opponent. At its not uncommmon best, ends the game on the spot.

A Tier

Paladin: For bullying your opponent around with the EMP missiles and safely getting attrition with the laser, Paladin is unmatched. Not the greatest unit in a pitched battle, though.

B Tier

Zenith: The standard superweapon at the moment, mostly on the basis of its cost. You don't have to be losing a game all that badly for Zenith to be unable to save you, in my experience.

Starlight: Obviously the best superweapon, if you can afford it. It would have to be a pretty weird game for this to be better than getting a Zenith 22K metal earlier, but stranger things have happened.

C Tier

Bertha: Does not end games. Can be okay on maps I do not choose to play.

Detriment: Giving this the benefit of the doubt. On the rare occasions a Detriment is in competent hands it can look pretty decent. Nevertheless, you are sinking an awful lot of metal into something that goes into enemy territory.

D Tier

Disco Rave Party: I am told this is terrible now. Not sure I 100 percent buy that, but I guess I will defer to the experience of people who actually make superweapons. If it's good anywhere it is when it won't have to traverse its turret much.

Water maps

Assume any water-capable unit not mentioned here has the same rating as it would on land.

S Tier

Conch: The seabed tends to accumulate a lot of reclaim and Conch does not die to the artillery that typically claims reclaiming constructors. Absolutely goated. S+ tier. Better than mex.

Envoy: Very strong artillery. The matchup against Lance is a bit wonky but Envoy can win it sometimes.

A Tier

Claymore: Best anti-sub damage in the game, although if tankiness is a factor you maybe want Siren instead.

Siren: Very solid escort for Envoys.

Seawolf, Duck: The premier underwater threats.

Shogun: In the late game probably better than Envoy, but even then being a single expensive target has downsides.

Scylla: This is a pretty expensive way to get a tacsilo that can't throw Shocklies... but if it blows up the opponents' entire economy, who is counting?

Urchin: Boring, reliable and effective. Unlike Lotus it can't shoot at gunships or Commander drones, which can be an issue.

B Tier

Mariner: Meh.

Mistral: Depending on the matchup this can be A tier, but it does tend to get outscaled.

Hunter: In very small teams on very large maps (think Inculta Wet) Hunter stocks go up a lot. In the typical sea game its mobility is not so much of a strength.

C Tier

Zephyr: Awful against planes, gets one-hit by Likho, sometimes manages to miss gunships too. If it is hitting then its DPS is very solid.

Cutter: Decent scout, occasionally has combat uses. Expensive enough that you can't just throw them away like Dart or Flea, though.

Reef: The guided disarm missile has interesting applications. Everything else about this unit is somewhere between "useless" and "an outright liability".

Detriment: On the one hand, there might be less to threaten this at sea. On the other hand, sea maps tend to lend themselves to superweapons that outscale Detri. Seems like a wash to me.

Appendix: Commander Weapons

A Tier

Beam Laser: Free, good damage, good range. Very solid weapon.

Machine Gun: Good damage and just enough AoE to be helpful against raiders. Range is a little low but since it is ballistic, clever use of terrain or Recon jump can compensate.

Disruptor Bomb: Very decent utility option.

B Tier

Light Particle Beam: B-plus. Somewhere in between Beam Laser and Machine Gun in terms of range and damage, but it's not free and it doesn't have AoE. However, if your plan is to morph further then LPB has the most upgrade potential.

Riot Cannon, Missile Launcher, Rocket Launcher: Makes your commander really good in one specific type of fight, but bad at everything else.

Lightning Rifle: Doesn't have enough conventional damage compared to the A-tier primaries. I would only use this in synergy with Venom/Widow or maybe Blitz. Without synergy this is D-tier at best.

Heavy Particle Beam: Strong, but you have to invest a lot of metal in a dubious chassis to get it.

Disintegrator: The potential upside is tremendous, but you really have to put your commander in harm's way to land a shot.

Cluster Bomb: Not as much upside as Disintegrator but also less risk.

Multistunner: Has a little more potential than Disruptor Bomb, but requires some help from other EMP sources and puts your commander at more risk.

C Tier

Flamethrower: Like Machine Gun, but worse.

Shock Rifle: This is a really expensive way to make one Phantom. I guess it is a tanky Phantom at least.

Concussion Shell: Very, very niche. The only use I have found for this is countering Recluses with a Recon commander on a hilly map. It is pretty good at that though!

D Tier

Shotgun: Like Machine Gun, but a lot worse.

SLAM: This is a really expensive way to make an Impaler, and most statics are either overkilled or not killed by 1500 damage.

F Tier

Hellfire Grenade: This just doesn't do very much.


Heat Ray: An occasional cheese option, especially for meme maps like Duck. In any ordinary fight you will just get killed from a distance.