Last Updated on January 31, 2024 by Arran Rice | Published: January 14, 2024
Arknights is a tower defense game with RPG elements that holds tremendous tactical potential for fans of the genre. Launched in 2019, the game has been amassing a plethora of Operators over all this time.
That’s why we’ve crafted this Arknights Tier List – January 2024. With so many updates and the introduction of new Operators, it’s challenging to keep track of the ideal ones. However, the game values player tactics more than their luck in drawing rare Operators.
Therefore, we’ll also delve into the distinct capabilities of each class and spotlight the most powerful Operators currently available in Arknights.
Nevertheless, merely having a pocket full of resources for many draws won’t cut it. To reach the end, only the most astute and tactical players will succeed.
Table of Contents
The Tier List Grade
We’ll rank the tier list from S to D, with S being the strongest Operators and D the most expendable. To simplify, we’ll highlight each Operator according to their class.
Needless to say, 6-star Operators are the most sought-after. Not just because of their abilities and attributes but also due to the ability to use 3 skills.
This makes them both powerful in their role and versatile depending on their skill set in Arknights.
In a tower defense game, character placement is crucial, and having an Operator that covers an area with various distinct abilities is a powerful advantage. Still, that’s not to say that 6-star heroes are almighty.
We can give love to the 5- and 4-star Operators since they’re also good and can easily occupy an S Tier.
There’s a common belief in the Arknights community that a player can finish the game with only 3-star Operators, and while that’s true, it’s rarer not to draw any 4-star or above Operators than to have an entire squad of 3 stars.
We will try to not include 1 and 2-star Operators since they’re easily replaced and don’t offer many advantages. Still, given their low deployment cost, sometimes you can add one or another to your squad and they will be displayed in a lower grade.
Arknights Vanguard Tier List
The primary advantage of Vanguards in Arknights is their low DP cost to join the battle. While being the most accessible, they still possess abilities that hasten the recovery of DP, and retreating them replenishes their full cost.
However, their statistics fall below those of a regular Guard or Defender. Their use is ideal for initial deployment, as they effectively repel weaker enemies at the start, facilitating the rapid positioning of the rest of your team.
Since many Vanguards restore all DP when retreated, the game conditions us for this substitution. It’s advisable to replace them with a Guard or Defender, or even keep them in an ‘off-tank’ position to intercept enemies escaping your initial defenses.
|Siege, Bagpipe, Saga, Myrtle, Zilma
|Elysium, Cantabile, Flametail, Ines, Saileach, Myrtle, Muelsyse
|Blacknight, Vanilla, Chiave, Beanstalk Courier, Grani
|Fang, Plume, Yato
Arknights Guard Tier List
Although the name is confusing, Guards are ground units focused on damage in Arknights. They have a remarkably high ATK attribute but relatively low DEF.
Guards excel when facing a swarm of weak enemies but struggle against larger or numerous foes. It’s suggested to place a Guard near a Defender but not in the path of the advancing enemy.
Some Guards can deal damage to multiple enemies simultaneously with their area-of-effect abilities, though these usually come at a higher cost than regular Guards.
Nonetheless, they are the ground unit with the highest damage output and should always make up a part of your squad.
|Thorns, Surtr, Ch’en, Hellagur, Mountain, Pallas, Skadi, Specter, Irene, La Pluma, Młynar,
|Rathalos S Noir Corne, SilverAsh, Blaze, Tequila, Guard Amiya , Matoimaru
|Pallas, Akafuyu, Astesia, Broca, Cutter, Flamebringer, Flint, Franka, Indra, Savage
|Frostleaf, Midnight, Quartz, Wind Chimes, Jackie
|Castle-3, Melantha, Popukar, Swire, Dobermann
Arknights Defender Tier List
Defenders in Arknights constitute the third group of melee Operators in stark contrast to Guards. Defenders have a very low ATK attribute, compensated by high DEF and the ability to withstand attacks from three units simultaneously.
They are most suitable for standing in the enemy’s line of fire while providing more time for our DPS to eliminate a group of enemies, whoever they may be.
As Defenders will be constantly under attack, it’s advisable to drop one or two Medics alongside them for optimized support. Defenders and Guards work well in synchrony but be cautious not to place the Guard in the enemy’s line.
Some Defenders can only hold two enemies but have access to self-healing abilities, making them behemoths in stages with fewer attackers than normal. Still, Defenders can’t defend against aerial enemies.
|Liskarm, Saria, Eunectes, Mudrock, Nian, Hoshiguma
|Beagle, Bison, Saria, Croissant, Blitz, Liskarm, Nearl, Vulcan
|Heavyrain, Bubble, Dur-Nar, Hung, Ashlock, Cuora
|Matterhorn, Noire Corne, Aurora
|Vulcan, Spot, Beagle, Cardigan, Spot
Arknights Sniper Tier List
Snipers are one of the ranged DPS units in Arknights. Their attacks are of physical damage, and they generally have one of the longest ranges in the game.
These Operators are ideal for dealing with flying enemies since they prioritize their attacks on them first. They cause significant damage to light creatures, but their effectiveness diminishes against heavily armored enemies.
While most focus on attacking one unit at a time, some can attack multiple enemies simultaneously either in their standard attack or when activating a specific ability.
It’s rare to encounter a stage where you won’t bring a Sniper into your Squad. In stages focused on aerial enemies, you will practically only have Snipers comprising your setup.
|W, Ash, Rosmontis, Schwarz, Rosa, Ch’en the Holungday, Fartooth, Pozëmka
|Archetto, Meteorite, Exusiai, Pinecone, Blue Poison, Platinum, Provence
|Ambriel, Fiammetta, Toddifons, GreyThroat, Firewatch, Andreana, Aosta, Executor, Fartooth, W, Rosmontis, Sesa
|Kroos, Meteorite, Aciddrop, Shirayuki, Jessica, Meteor
|Adnachiel, Reserve Operator – Sniper, Rangers, Catapult
Arknights Caster Tier List
Casters are a ranged unit with a shorter range, slower attack speed, and a higher cost compared to Snipers. The initial impression might be that they are inferior ranged units.
However, Casters deal magical damage, and this type of damage is incredibly potent against enemies with high defense but low resistance. Some spellcasters have AoE abilities or can increase their attack speed, like the initial character Amiya.
In a squad, it’s always good to have a couple of Casters ready in case the stage throws enemies with high defense at you. Like Snipers, Casters can hit aerial enemies, but they won’t prioritize them.
Casters and Snipers are effective when working in tandem in Arknights. Sniper dealing fast physical damage, while Casters kills off heavy-armored units with their magical skills.
One of the recent updates added 6-star Ebenholz to the Operators. He has the ability to store attacks when there are no targets and deal massive damage when fired all at once. His range is a 3×3 grid, making it a long-range killing machine.
|Ebenholz, Ifrit, Carnelian, Dusk, Ceobe, Eyjafjalla, Mostima
|Absinthe, Iris, Beeswax, Leizi, Amiya, Leonhardt, Mint, Nightmare, Pith, Skyfire, Tomimi, Kjera, Passenger
|Gitano, Harmonie, Haze, Qanipalaat, Lava the Purgatory
|Corroserum, Greyy, 12F, Steward
Arknights Medic Tier List
Medics are a class of Operators with the fewest characters in the game because their role is very straightforward.
They play their expected role as ranged units: they are capable of healing allies within their range. However, they are vulnerable and should stay away from enemy fire, as they don’t self-heal.
Therefore, it’s recommended to place two Medics on the stage, usually facing each other, with Defenders between them. Some Medics heal a single unit, while others can heal several at once.
The amount that Medics heal corresponds to their ATK stat. Some Medics also have area-of-effect abilities depending on the character and their rarity.
|Paprika, Kal’stit, Shining, Mulberry, Honeyberry
|Mulberry, Breeze, Perfumer, Silence, Whisperain, Tuye, Nightingale
|Folinic, Sussurro, Hibiscus
|Myrrh, Gavial, Perfumer, Purestream, Whisperain, Chestnut
|Ceylon, Gavial, Ansel, Lancet-2
Arknights Supporter Tier List
The Supporter class does exactly what you’re imagining. They are Operators whose function is to assist other Operators, whether buffing allies or debuffing enemies.
One archetype can strengthen allies, while others focus on crowd control. Some Supporters can directly attack the enemy, dealing magical damage and significantly slowing the enemy with each attack, but this comes at the cost of low ATK.
Other Supporters can use summons. Alone, they are weak, but the summoned unit helps complement their low attributes.
Some hybrid Supporters can heal, alleviating some of the Medic’s burden.
|Stainless, Ling, Angelina, Magallan, Shamare, Skadi the Corrupting Heart
|Gnosis, Suzuran, Sora, Scene
|Glaucus, Pramanix, Earthspirit
|Podenco, Deepcolor, Quercus, Roberta
|Orchid, Tsukinogi, Istina, Mayer
Arknights Specialist Tier List
Specialists are Operators that don’t fit into any other class and have an immense variety of functions based on their archetype.
Some can be melee, while others are ranged. However, most have physical attacks. Where a Specialist truly shines is in its diverse abilities.
There are Pushers and Pullers, altering an enemy’s position. It’s tricky to use both, but when executed well, they aid other Operators in their functions. The Controller Specialist has powerful crowd control abilities, such as slowing down an opponent.
Sacrificial and DP-Drain Specialists are a double-edged sword. Although powerful, the name already indicates the adverse effect. Sacrificial loses HP constantly until it dies, while DP-Drain removes your DP.
They are entirely situational Operators but can be incredibly powerful if you know when to apply their numerous exotic abilities. Don’t underestimate the Specialists.
|Gladiia, Weedy, Aak, Projekt Red, Weedy, Phantom, Specter the Unchained, Enforcer
|Lee, Cliffheart, Robin, Mr. Nothing, Frost, Manticore, Kirara
|Ethan, Kazemaru, Waai Fu, Bena
|Gravel, Rope, Shaw, Jaye, Kafka, Snowsant
|Kirara, Spuria, THRM-EX
How Recruitment Works
There are two ways to recruit Operators in Arknights: Headhunt, the standard method using in-game currency called Orundum, and Recruit, where we send our HR employees in search of new Operators.
In Recruit, we choose the Recruitment Time. The longer the time invested, the higher the chance of getting higher-star Operators. We can also choose Job Tags.
To initiate recruitment, you need to invest LMD, the in-game money, and a Recruitment Permit. The longer the time, the more expensive the LMD, but nothing excessive.
Our suggestion is to set the maximum time before turning off the game and discover your new Operators the next day.
The second method is Headhunt, the more traditional form in mobile games, the gacha. It requires using 600 Orundum for a Headhunt, or 6000 for a 10-roll pull.
Occasionally, events with discounts on Orundum spending appear, advantageous for new players. Banners for new Operators alternate sporadically, a practice that ensures the financial health of many mobile games.
Classes Variations & Traits
Despite everything we discussed about classes, still within a type, there can be various variations depending on the Trait.
For example, a Vanguard usually blocks two enemies, but there are variations where a Vanguard Operator will block only one but possess a trait where they recover more DP when defeating an enemy.
Another example is the Guard, who blocks three enemies. There are variations that reduce the number of enemies they can block but add a trait where the Operator recovers HP for each enemy defeated.
Everything depends on the stage and the tactic employed to achieve victory. The idea is to play, learn all the secrets, and get to know the Operators in your squad well, and success will come in the end.
You’ve just read the Arknights Tier List – January 2024. Remember, nothing is set in stone. While this is our opinion, you may have others or perhaps use an Operator more efficiently than we do.
Arknights is a game that values tactics and the synergy of your squad more than individual Operators. Don’t get too attached to their ranks and nurture those in your hands. That way, you’ll achieve the coveted victory.