The Brood Lord is followed by a number of flying Broodlings on its model. This may seem trivial, but it's important. If the Brood Lord has two Broodlings flying alongside it (the maximum), it will shoot two Broodlings on its attack. If it only has one Broodling by its side, it will only shoot one on its attack. The recharge time for a Broodling is equal to the attack speed of the Brood Lord, so if ordered to continuously attack, the Brood Lord will be firing one Broodling at a time. A Broodling is a temporary unit and once the duration bar is depleted the unit will die, regardless of health.
Brood Lords have an unusual property of benefiting from both ground and air upgrades. Ground Carapace can change the number of hits required to kill Broodlings, effectively increasing the number of live Broodlings on the field. Melee Attacks will always provide a considerable increase in Broodling damage, providing up to 10-12 extra damage(x2 units for initial shot) if the Broodling lives to deal all its attacks. Broodlings often deal two or more attacks even in large battles, making melee upgrades a good choice over air damage.[Citation needed]
Brood Lords have siege range and the Broodlings they spawn are extremely useful at blocking off ground units and causing friendly fire, making them extremely powerful for attacking ground units and keeping them at range. This and the fact that they do not have the damage output or endurance to hold in a straight up fight means they are best handled as siege units in order to score free hits from a distance. Place them away from open space, favoring cliffs and obstructing terrain to keep ground units out of range. Do not use Brood Lords without AA support, as a protracted siege offers opponents plenty of time to respond.
Brood Lords have near perfect synergy with Infestors, and should be used with them whenever possible. Fungal Growth will root ground units in place, and since the Brood Lord out ranges all ground AA except the Thor, they can drop Broodlings with impunity. Fungal Growth and Infested Terran are also great for protecting the Brood Lord against flying units like Vikings and Void Rays, giving them ample time to pull away from danger and be rescued.
Brood Lords are an effective siege unit against Protoss. Protoss typically must deal with Brood Lords with Stalkers (with Blink) and/or Void Rays. However, Zerg may protect their Brood Lords from these units with sufficient support. With sufficient ground support, Stalkers are prevented from moving forward (blinking, typically) to take Brood Lords out. Similarly, Zerg may protect Brood Lords from Void Rays with Hydralisks or Corruptors.
The splash damage of Colossi and Archons can quickly destroy large numbers of Broodlings, reducing the threat of Brood Lords. High Templar with Psionic Storm can also be effective against a Zerg army with Brood Lords, especially if the Brood Lords are clumped together or if the Zerg ground army is positioned beneath the Brood Lords. If a Protoss is able to produce Tempests, they will hard counter the Brood Lords with their range and bonus damage to massive air units. Phoenixes are also able to engage and battle Brood Lords if they are not protected by Hydralisks or Corruptors.
Using Brood Lords is the main end game option against Terran. Brood Lords are highly capable against any Terran ground unit and even more so if the Terran is unable to respond with Vikings fast enough. Upgraded and stimmed Marines can still pose a threat but with Zergling, Baneling, Ultralisk and/or Infestor ground support, the Terran will be forced to produce Vikings. Even with Vikings, Terran can have a tough time dealing with Brood Lords. It can also be useful to keep some unmorphed Corruptors with the Brood Lords to fend off harassing Vikings.
One effective late game transition is to get a large number of Brood Lords to force the Terran to produce Vikings, and then to transition into Ultralisks, causing the Vikings to be virtually useless in a large battle. The issues with this tech switch are that the Vikings are then relatively free to start attacking Overlords, and that it generally requires so much gas that unless the game is on a map such as Shakuras Plateau the number of bases required for the strategy to be effective means that it is quite difficult to achieve.
Brood Lords are rarely used in ZvZ, as Zerg versus Zerg matches tend to finish before the late game is reached. However, when late game is reached, they are a strong option as they perform well vs all Zerg ground units, including Hydralisks.
- Brood Lord's sounds (video and sound) - YouTube video.
|Patch 7 (version 0.9.0.14621B)|
|Patch 11 (version 0.13.0.15250)|
|Patch 15 (version 0.17.0.15623)|
|Patch 1.3.3 (build 18574)|
|Balance Update – March 23, 2014|