Charge is an autocast ability of the Protoss Zealot that allows it to more quickly engage enemy units by charging across small distances. Zealots with this ability will instantly Charge the enemy they are attacking so that they can engage in combat much faster.
Charge temporarily increases the movement speed to 9.1, allowing Zealots to intercept nearby enemies, dealing 8 damage to the charged target. Also increases the base movement speed of Zealots to 4.13. With Charge a Zealot is as fast as a Stalker.
A Zealot with researched Charge is often named "Speedlot" or "Chargelot".
Ability itself multiplies the Zealot's movement speed by a factor of 2.2 thus resulting in 9.1 (9.086).
This ability can be incredibly useful for the Zealot as it is a melee attacking unit, and a relatively slow one at that. Charge tones down some of these disadvantages, ensuring that more Zealots will engage the enemy before being weakened or gunned down by enemy ranged attackers.
The ability has a range of 4, meaning that an enemy unit can only be Charged when the Zealot is attacking an enemy within that range. In other words, you can't be charging across the map like a stimmed Marine.
Charge is rarely seen in PvP games due to the current way the game is played in this match-up. With the widely popular and strong 4 Gate opening, the game usually ends before any sort of tech is seen. And although Charge helps to close gaps quickly, it remains inferior to the Stalker's Blink ability when micro'ed properly. If it happens to continue into a longer game, Zealots become less effective due to the common usage of Colossi in late game army compositions. The splash damage will melt the Zealots before any significant damage is inflicted.
Getting Charge is necessary due to the effectiveness of Marauders with Concussive Shells. Without Charge, Zealots are very prone to being kited by Marauders and are easily destroyed. With the Charge upgrade, Concussive Shells has a smaller effect on Zealot movement and does not affect Zealot Charge speed.
In most PvT games, Protoss goes for Stalkers with Blink first because the upgrade is cheaper, it researches faster, and because Stalkers move quicker without requiring an upgrade. Zealots usually come out later in the game, if at all, due to the higher cost of Charge and because Blink allows Protoss to jump ledges with an Observer present while Charge does not.
While Chargelots are decent mid-game against Bio Terran, they tend to fare better against Mechanized Terran even during late game. Charge is useful for Zealots running up to Siege Tanks and helps break the Terran ball. Even though Zealot Bombing is not as effective as in SC1 due to better auto-targeting AI, Zealots can still effectively draw Tank fire and leak their splash damage onto Terran units simply by being in close proximity to them.
Whereas base speed Zealots can be easily kited by Roaches and Hydralisks and outmaneuvered by Speedlings, particularly on creep, Charge greatly levels the playing field for Protoss players. Zealots can quickly close in on groups of Roaches and Hydras, and avoid easy Zergling surrounds.
In addition, Starcraft II's highly improved auto-surround AI allows charging Zealots to easily establish concaves and surrounds. This maximizes the effectiveness of every Zealot while, in the later stages of the game, improving their ability to tank damage away from damage-dealing Colossi and High Templar.
In some situations, Charge can be disadvantageous: If Zealots charge straight into a ball of Roaches and Hydras, they will die quickly before the rest of your force will be able to engage. For such situations it might be advisable to disable the Charge ability temporarily.
In Combination with Other Spells
By Blinking with Stalkers behind the enemy force, and then Charging the front with upgraded Zealots, and attack-moving all units, you can have an effective attack that hits two points, while using relatively little micromanagement.
- Can last for up to 3.5 seconds or until the first attack is performed.
|Patch 3.8.0 |
|Patch 3.14.0 |
- Stream : ACE beats MC's Chargelots with Blink micro (May 2011)
- Blizzard Entertainment (22 November 2016). "Legacy of the Void - Patch 3.8.0 -- November 22, 2016". Battle.net.
- Blizzard Entertainment (22 May 2017). "Legacy of the Void - Patch 3.14.0 -- May 22, 2017". Battle.net.