The New Monster Lab
Backyard Monsters new units and abilities has taken the game to a whole new level. The new Monster Lab building allows you to upgrade several units with new abilities. These new abilities have changed the way battles will be played out. It may even require restructuring your entire base. The Monster Lab requires 100,000 twigs and pebbles. Its building time takes three hours, which is rather fast for such a big upgrade. Do not get your hopes up just because the building only takes three hours. The upgrades to the units can take days. To unlock the new abilities you must first have the desired unit at level two. That alone can be very time consuming, unless you have already upgraded them. There are three levels for each unit's new special ability. Each upgrade strengthens the ability.
Aerial Defense Tower
With the addition of the new aerial healing unit, the Zafreeti, anti-air defenses are needed. Without these new towers your only defense for air units are Tesla Towers. Those towers will be quickly targeted and taken out, leaving you defenseless as the healing power of the Zafreeti is massive. The Aerial Defense Tower deals massive damage to both the Zafreeti and the Teratorn. Positioning of these towers are vital. You want them to cover your important buildings, such as your silos, harvesters, and your Town Hall. I would advise upgrading the Aerial Defense Tower as quickly as possible before people take advantage of the new Zafreeti unit. The cost to build it is 215,000 twigs, 280,000 pebbles, 62,500 putty. The building time is five hours, this is good as the amount of time to unlock the Zafreeti or the Tertorn are much longer.
The Bolt unit's new ability is teleportation. The first upgrade allows it to teleport a distance of 150, allowing it to reach buildings that much faster. Teleportation combined with the Bolt's natural speed allow it to jump quickly from building to building, making resource runs easier on poorly defended bases. Before, the Bolt was not used very often, but with this new upgrade, you may find people using them against you more often. In my opinion, even with the upgrade, this unit is still not worth the resources required to build them.
The Bandito's new ability is whirlwind. This ability causes the unit to spin, dealing damage to units in a small area around it. The ability only triggers when used against other monsters, it does not trigger when used against buildings. A good use for this unit's ability is defense. Filling your Monster Bunker with these once they are upgraded is one viable defensive option. Another use is to have a few on hand when dealing with what comes out of other player's bunkers. A few of these can quickly destroy certain defensive units used in bunkers. The downside to the unit is that it is slow. If you decide to fill you Monster Bunkers with these units, it will take awhile for the unit to reach the invading force.
The new ability for the Brain unit is invisibility. This ability allows the Brain to avoid attacks from towers for a short period of time. The further the ability is researched, the longer the invisibility will last. This is another great way to attacks for resources. Beware, the Brain is still susceptible to land mines. For defensive purposes, it would be wise to carefully pick the locations of your land mines. Putting them around harvesters and silos would be the best option. Overall, this ability is definitely worth the cost and time to train. With all the new anti-air and stronger towers you will need a unit that can quickly steal resources. Fortunately, the Brain is a rather inexpensive unit.
Wormzer Splash Damage
The Wormzer unit was granted the ability of splash damage. This ability deals 300 damage to units and buildings in a small area around the unit. It can be researched to deal more damage. This unit has never seen much use, and in my opinion, this upgrade is not enough to make the unit viable. The problem with the unit is its speed is too fast, causing it to move in well before your tank units get the attention of the towers. This causes the Wormzer to get annihilated quickly, this leaves you with little chance to gather resources. Your putty is better spent elsewhere.
Project X Acid Spores
Finally, we are getting to more useful abilities. The Project X unit is designed to attack defensive towers. While its health is less than that of the much more used Crabatron, its damage is vastly higher. The new ability granted to the Project X unit is acid spores. When researched to level one, any time the unit dies it will explode. The explosion of acid deals 1200 damage at first. If you can get this unit near defensive towers long enough with the use of putty, the explosion can be devastating to defensive towers and walls. Although not very high on my list of choices for upgrades, this one will definitely be worth the upgrade later on.
The Teratorn was widely used, if not overused, before the addition of the Aerial Defense Tower. With more anti-air defenses now being used, we are not seeing it used in battle as much. But, with the new ability of ricochet, it may yet again become viable if properly used. When first trained, the ricochet ability bounces from one target to another. As it becomes upgraded, the number of bounces increases. This allow the unit to both destroy towers and steal resources at the same time, as long as you have managed to take care of any anti-air defenses before sending these units in. This ability is one of the more desirable ones, it can be used in numerous ways as previously stated. The once feared Teratorn is now even more dangerous than before.
The most dangerous and destructive unit in the game so far, now even more so. The unit D.A.V.E was given the ability to launch rockets from range. After researching to level one, D.A.V.E is given rockets with a range of 140. With the slow speed of this unit, the ranged rockets are an excellent addition. Expect to see large armies of rocket wielding robots attacking your base. D.A.V.E and its rockets, combined with the healing power of the Zafreeti will likely be one of the main attack tactics used. One counter to this is to fill your bunkers with the unit Eye-ra. The explosive power of the Eye-ra is a very affective way to destroy an army of rocket wielding robots. In my opinion, this is the very first upgrade you should unlock if your resources allow it. The race for putty and unit upgrades has begun. With the amount of time it takes to unlock these skills you must choose wisely.
Zafreeti – Healing Power
Backyard Monsters new units and abilities has given players a healing unit, the Zafreeti, which has greatly changed the game. Both offensive and defensive tactics must be changed. Base layouts, tower position, and the newly Aerial Defense Tower must be moved and properly positioned to combat this powerful unit. Healing for 600, with what seems to be an unlimited amount of energy and the ability to heal multiple units quickly, this unit must be killed in order for your base to stand any chance of survival. The Zafreeti's healing power can be upgraded to allow the survival of any unit with a decent amount of heal, so long as the Zafreeti is in range. The only downsides to this unit seen so far are its clunky A.I. and its slow speed. The unit can become spastic, almost seeming confused as the units it tries to heal spread out further from one another. The Zafreeti will slowly try to move from one unit to another, quickly turning back to the closest unit taking damage. It would be wise to either keep your units closely together or spread out several Zafreeti amongst several groups.
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