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Ultralisk
Hit Points: 400
Size: Large
Supply: 4
Cost: 200 200
Build Time: 60
Produced at: Hive/Hatchery
Requires: Ultralisk Cavern
Base Ground Attack: 20
Base Air Attack: N/A
Base Armor: 1
Range: 1
Sight: 7
Cooldown: 15
Production Hot Key: U

The Zerg use these massive creatures as living tanks. Their immense mandibles have a monomolecular edge, enabling them to cut through armored vehicles and infantry alike. A handful of these creatures are believed to have been responsible for the death of an entire Confederate garrison on Timul IV. The best way to deal with these beasts is from the air.

The enormous Ultralisk is the crown of Zerg evolution, with its 400 HP of vitality and 20 base damage it can inflict in a single blow. The amount of punishment an Ultralisk can take is almost unreal and in groups, these gargantuan monsters can tear down even the most stalwart defenses of any race. With their ability to withstand immense firepower, the Ultralisks are best used as damage absorbers or cannon fodder to divert attention away from ranged attack units like the Hydralisk, Mutalisk or Guardian. Keep the Ultralisks in the front line whenever possible so that they can deal their damage while facing the brunt of the enemy's attack.

The mere sight of one Ultralisk can often intimidate a foe and this psychological advantage can prove very useful in the later game. Using Ultralisks for their scare value can easily turn the tide of battle and often an enemy's focus of attention on the Ultralisk can be their undoing when support units unleash their attacks, often in greater numbers with higher damage potential.

Despite their huge size, Ultralisks can still be transported within Overlords or through Nydus Canals and can prove to be a nasty surprise in a sneak attack or ambush. Use this to your advantage whenever the opportunity arises to break through the usual meager defenses at the rear of enemy bases and wreak havoc on the colony. One drawback is that their size does prevent them from being able to Burrow properly and are the only Zerg ground units that are unable to Burrow once the ability has been evolved at a Hatchery/Lair/Hive.

Although the Ultralisk's sheer power is daunting, it does have a few weaknesses. For one, the Ultralisk is helpless against attack from aerial units. For all of its vaunted strength, an Ultralisk can fall prey to a lone Wraith, Mutalisk or Scout. Another weakness is the Ultralisks slow movement. Although the Ultralisk can be evolved with Anabolic Synthesis (faster movement upgrade), it can still take some time for the Ultralisk to reach the front lines of battle, so if you do plan to use Ultralisks, prepare for their use ahead of time and make sure they precede any support groups that might be used with them. Finally, the Ultralisk size can prove to be a hindrance in certain situations where they will not be able to travel through a narrow choke point and as a result they can hold up the movement of an entire force should they get "stuck" trying to get through such areas.

To best protect the investment in an Ultralisk (they are rather expensive), be sure to get all the Melee Attack, Carapace, Anabolic Synthesis and Chitinous Plating upgrades at the Evolution Chamber and Ultralisk Cavern. Fully upgraded, the Ultralisk is truly something to fear.

Countermeasures

Terrans

  • Siege Tanks in Siege Mode can nail Ultralisks during their approach. But be sure to stagger Tank positions so that should an Ultralisk reach the Tank line, each of the Tanks will be able to defend each other.
  • Wraiths can deal damage against the Utralisks with complete impunity, but unless they substantially outnumber the Ultralisks, their attack may not even be noticed by an Ultralisk.
  • Battlecruisers using Yamato Gun blasts can quickly turn the tables on an Ultralisk force.
  • Use Irradiate with Science Vessels to quickly diminish an Ultralisk's HP by 250.

Protoss

  • Zealots in numbers can help slow down an Ultralisk giving ranged attack units like Dragoons more time to take down an Ultralisk.
  • Dark Templar can help stop an Ultralisk rampage, as long as they remain undetected.
  • The High Templar's Psionic Storm can cause some damage to the Ultralisk, but not enough to really slow them down. It may require several applications of Psionic Storm to actually kill an Ultralisk.
  • The Dark Archon provides several key counters to the Ultralisk. Maelstrom to stop Ultralisks in their tracks, immobilizing them for a short time and giving other defenders a chance to take out the Ultralisks before they can recover. Mind Control the single best solution against Ultralisks as power of the Ultralisk is turned against its former master.
  • Scouts and Carriers in numbers can attack Ultralisks with complete impunity and with a large enough group can destroy Ultralisks within a reasonable amount of time.

Zealots gang up on an ULtralisk

[ Click to Enlarge - 83 KB ]
Protoss player uses sheer numbers of Zealots to take on an Ultralisk.

Zerg

  • Zerglings can quickly tie up an Ultralisk's attack and with their relatively cheap cost they make perfect fodder while groups of Hydralisks or other support units finish the Ultralisks off.
  • Mutalisks and Guardians can attack with complete impunity.
  • The Queen's Spawn Broodling ability is the single best counter against Ultralisks for the Zerg. The Ultralisk has no chance against the instantaneous death the Spawn Broodling ability inflicts.
  • Use the Defiler's Plague ability to bring down an Ultralisk's HP by 300.
Upgrades

Melee Melee
Level 1 - 100 100
Level 2 - 150 150
Level 3 - 200 200
Carapace Carapace
Level 1 - 150 150
Level 2 - 225 225
Level 3 - 300 300
Anabolic Synthesis Anabolic Synthesis
200 200
Faster Ultralisk Movement
Chitinous Plating Chitinous Plating
150 150
Improved Ultralisk Armor

Melee - Each upgrade adds +3 to Melee Attacks for a total of +9 when fully upgraded.

Carapace - Each upgrade adds +1 to the Carapace for a total of +3 when fully upgraded.

Anabolic Synthesis - This alteration of the glands that produce endorphins and adrenal fluids serves to increase the reflexes and rate of movement of the Ultralisk.

Chitinous Plating - This evolution imbues the Ultralisk strain with a hardened exoskeletal shell, enhancing the already impressive natural defenses of the Ultralisk. This hardened shell provides an additional two points of armor.



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