- This article is for the Heart of the Swarm multiplayer version, for the Wings of Liberty version see: Spore Crawler (Wings of Liberty).
The Spore Crawler is a Zerg base anti-air static defense structure, which deals 15 points of damage to air units and has the ability to detect cloaked units. Although similar to the Spore Colony, the Spore Crawler has the distinct ability to Uproot itself and Root in a new location, giving it very good mobility and a more flexible use. Take note that Spore Crawlers lose their detection ability while uprooted.
Spore Crawlers have excellent endurance and deal more damage per second than Photon Cannons, but not as much as Missile Turrets. Spore Crawlers remain unpopular as Queens are typically used to fill gaps in early game air defense, and Hydralisks remain more versatile on the move.
Spore Crawlers, like all air defenses, are most effective when tightly packed. This protects them from being singled out by clusters of air units.
Spore Crawlers are often built against Protoss to defend against early Stargate play. They complement Queens quite well against Void Rays and Phoenixes, since a Queen can stay near the Spore Crawler and use the range of its antiair attack to pick away at the Protoss air units, while fending off any that close on the Queen to attack it. As buildings, they are immune to the Phoenix's Graviton Beam ability, and can provide cover for Drones and Queens nearby against Phoenixes.
Spore Crawlers are sometimes made to defend against Banshee harassment if the Zerg player does not yet have access to Overseers for detection. In the late game they are often used to discourage Medivac drops due to the difficulty of defending several bases with only units.
Spore Crawlers have been frequently used in the mirror matchup since Mutalisk play became the standard in Heart of the Swarm. Because Mutalisks are biological units, the crawler profits from its extra damage. In recent gameplay due to the buffs to Spore Crawlers to biological units, they have seen use to kill scouting overlords in 9 pool builds, effectively supply blocking opponents who will be unable to make defenses. This only works on maps with close air spawns and fails against 9 pool, as demonstrated by Solar on Habitation Station in SPL 2014 ().
|Patch 7 (version 0.9.0.14621B)|
|Patch 11 (version 0.13.0.15250)|
|Balance Update – May 13, 2013|