Original Author: JavaMega
I’m JavaMega, a Canadian user who has been playing Brawl Stars since launch day. My in-game-name is Binary, and I co-lead Reddit Hotel. The only gems I’ve spent are on the Nita skin so if you’d like a “basically F2P” player’s view on the metagame as of 17/07/17, look no further! Here is my tier list for all the brawlers in Brawl Stars!
Let’s kick it off with…
Shelly—This shotgun-wielding brawler is the one character that excels at all game modes. With her huge damage output and large range, Shelly can act as a support troop or front-liner. She is easily able to charge up her Super ability by chipping away at opponents, even those that are somewhat far away. Shelly’s Super is a greater ranged, more powerful version of her standard attack that deals knockback and stun to the enemy. It can even break down walls and clear the field of grass!
I can’t think of any weakness that Shelly might have, except maaaaybe her hitpoints that are a little lacklustre. As a starting character, she is easy to play and rewards the player with good results for not too much effort. On a side note, she counters Mortis, Primo and Bull very well!
Piper—The first brawler to be added to the game via balance update, Piper makes a huge splash in the meta. As a sniper, Piper really dislikes being up close and personal with the enemy. The further away she is from her target, the more damage her bullets do. Although her range is even greater than Brock’s, she has the added benefit of doing massive damage.
While some may call her overpowered, she can be dealt with by moving unpredictably and not allowing her to lead your character into her line of fire. An escape option in her Super ability allows her to get away if the enemy comes too close and potentially kill the opponent(s) with her exploding tea kettles.
She counters characters like Bull, Mortis, Brock and especially Ricochet (whom she is able to one-shot if the upgrade/level difference is large). Note: Ricochet is really good against Shelly because he outranges her. Bounty is her best game mode, although she’s pretty great in Smash & Grab too!
Mortis—A character with a very unique play style. One of the two “melee” brawlers, Mortis found his place as the king of Smash & Grab. His standard attack is a quick dash that moves him forward quite a bit while striking with his shovel, giving him the greatest mobility in the game (although Crow moves the fastest). This allows Mortis to be the team’s crystal-grabber and swoop in to attack only when an enemy is low on health or is not suspecting him in hiding in a bush.
Mortis’ Super ability shoots bats that steal health from the opponent. In my opinion, a character with such good movement options and escape abilities should not be able to recover health so easily, but he is somewhat balanced as a character. Finally, he usually counters lower health characters such as Brock, Colt and Dynamike/Barley. The best ways to deal with Mortis are using Nita’s Big Baby Bear, Jessie’s Turrets, or Shelly.
Spike—Debatably the more versatile Legendary brawler, Spike is the ultimate support character. Crowd control is his main skill (if you think I’ve assumed his gender, watch Brawl Stars’ YouTube video called “The WILD BUNCH”).
If you can hit his standard attack directly on the opponent, they will lose a lot of HP. However, if you miss, the attack splits into 6 spikes that deal less damage but fly quickly. His unique ability to slow the movement speed of enemies while damaging them with his Super attack is awesome and makes an enemy caught in it basically a sitting duck for your team to defeat them.
Counters to Spike include Piper, Jessie, and Spike himself! Smash & Grab is his best game mode.
Poco—While he might not be very effective one-on-one, Poco has very good crowd control, much like Spike. Before his 15% range nerf, Poco was overpowered. Now he must get a little bit closer to the enemy team to try and hit them all with his standard attack. Although he doesn’t deal a lot of damage, Poco does enough to force enemies to retreat if played right. Healing teammates and himself with his Super, Poco does his job very well and likes to stick with tanks on the battlefield, as he shouldn’t be played as a front-liner.
Nita—Despite others viewing Nita as underwhelming, I gotta show some love for my main brawler. Without bias, Nita is an all-arounder who does decently in any game mode (except Heist kind of, although throwing a bear onto the safe is a huge play). Her standard attack is a shock wave that rips through the ground and hurts enemies. Unlike most characters, this attack goes through enemies, so Nita gets the most value for her shots when two or even three opponents are bunched up (or in a line).
Calling upon the spirit of the Big Baby Bear for her Super Ability, Nita can basically throw a short-ranged Primo in front of her to either cause the opposing team to fall back a little bit, body block enemy fire, or to lock down an area temporarily. This bear is really tough to deal with for opposing Nitas, Jessies, Mortises, Brocks, and Pocos. Her best game mode is Smash & Grab.
Bo—Boasting between 900 and 1100 hitpoints and a long range, Bo is fairly strong in any game mode. While he may not do very much damage without hitting all three arrows, he’s good at keeping the enemy far away. When he charges up his Super, throwing the mines down on a narrow part of the map or near the gem mine makes the opponent have to play more cautious or avoid that area entirely, which is a big advantage for Bo’s team.
Bo can be countered by Primo, Piper, and sometimes Colt. Overall, Bo is average in damage and range but is great at area denial. His best game mode is Bounty or Smash & Grab.
Bull—Many people are using Bull right now because he is so strong and his super lets him get anywhere on the map quickly. His tiny range, however, is what really holds him back from being higher on my tier list. Piper, Shelly and Ricochet are Bull’s worst nightmares because he can’t even begin to approach them.
That being said, he is decent in Showdown, but even better in Bounty and Smash & Grab when he can hide in the bushes with his teammates. Up close, Bull easily defeats his enemies, and the element of surprise is the greatest tool in his repertoire.
Jessie—Control, control, control. This little lady does well at forcing the enemy team to move away from one another because of her electric shots that bounce from player to player. Combine that with her Super ability and you’ve got a match made in heaven.
Although, some of her drawbacks include poor damage output against individual opponents as well as a low amount of HP on her turret. Shelly, Nita and Mortis are good against her (Piper does pretty well too, but mostly because she does well against everyone). Her best game mode is definitely Smash & Grab.
Crow—Most players didn’t see the potential of Crow when they first played with him or even against him. He is slowly rising in popularity. His poison daggers are awesome at scouting out the opposing team’s position while they’re in hiding and it works as a great anti-heal.
What Crow lacks is damage and a good Super ability. Yes, it’s meant as a retreat option, but it would be cool to see Crow steal health from the enemy in some way or have some ability to stun the enemy or something.
Crow’s best game modes are Smash & Grab (because his fast movement speed allows him to gather crystals with ease) and Bounty, where he can prevent hiding. Counter Crow with Shelly, Spike, or Nita!
Ricochet (I’m sorry I forgot you)—Ok, he’s not as bad as he used to be. He is really seeing much more usage than a few weeks ago because of his range and recently buffed standard attack. Players have really become skilled with him and now he is an awesome support character. Never cross your half of the map with him.
His Super does tons of damage if it lands, which isn’t too hard. He counters characters with short range pretty well but struggles against those who can get in on him, like Mortis and Shelly. Also, Piper being able to 1-2 shot him is really annoying. His best game mode is Bounty!
El Primo—He used to be top-tier upon soft-launch and even a few weeks in but then people figured him out and started to play with caution around him. His range seems shorter than it once was.
With so many ranged characters in the current meta, Primo really struggles to get in on the enemy and charge up his Super, which is his best way of getting in. Counter him with ranged characters like Ricochet, Brock, or Spike.
Dynamike—This might be just my opinion, but Dynamike is good in every game mode except Showdown. In Smash & Grab he can hide behind walls and cover the gem mine. In Bounty he can basically do the same and of course Heist is fairly easy for him, whether on offence or defence. Dynamike does more damage than Barley on average and with his recently buffed Super, his big bomb deals 500 points of damage!
So why isn’t he higher up then? His attacks are very slow but not always easy to dodge. When being chased, Dynamike struggles a lot, especially against Shelly. With only 600 base hitpoints, many characters can deal with him easily. Still, he is nowhere near the worst in the game.
Colt—A good example of a character that is very hard to play, but does SO MUCH WORK when played right. If he had any more range, he would probably be mid to high-tier. Landing all of his bullets is tricky unless you can really predict where the opponents are going to go. His Super ability is pretty darn difficult to effectively utilize, although it can really clear an area out.
Colt is not bad against tanks like Bull and Primo, but he has problems with high-damage brawlers, especially Mortis who easily defeats him. His best game mode is undoubtedly Bounty.
Bottom Tier (Oh no!)
Brock—Poor Brock. He’s basically been replaced by Piper. The only reason to choose him over her is his Super ability, which deals loads of damage against enemies most of the time. His projectiles need to travel quicker and he deserves and even quicker reload speed, perhaps 6% or more (please Supercell, if you’re reading this???).
Brock is okay at Bounty and Smash & Grab but not usually too good at anything else. Use Nita and her BBB to rush him down or make him one of Mortis’ victims.
And finally, the least viable brawler in the game, according to my opinion, is…
Barley—Oh boy. I don’t even know where to begin. To be fair, Barley is good at Heist. I’ll give him that. But the only other good thing about him is his Super, and that can still be avoided if you watch where he aims it. His damage is poor unless you don’t move and let the DOT hurt you, or if you just walk in a straight line all the time and rarely change direction. Barley has low hitpoints and his attacks are weak and slow.
Use him in Heist. He doesn’t excel against any one brawler and can be countered by quick-moving characters, high damage characters, tanks, and ranged characters. So… basically all the brawlers in the game. Oh yeah, and Nita’s bear kills him too.
I’m sorry, Barley mains…