Counter: Side is a futuristic sci-fi gacha RPG with gameplay that can be classified as 2D side-scrolling tower defense mixed with Clash Royale elements. You assemble a deck of 8 units, each assigned a deployment cost, and march onto the battlefield. The deploy cost will regenerate as the battle progresses and it’s a vital resource for dispatching your units (or knocking them out of the sky as is the case with some mechs). Picking the right characters isn’t as easy as it looks, so we decided to create a Counter: List of side levels.
The main accolade Counter:Side is known for is the introduction of a ban system into its PvP mode to keep the game’s PvP balance healthy (this system earned it the Best Competitive 2021 award on Google play). For fans of story-centric RPGs, fret not as Counter: Side has an enticing plot with dark undertones with its colorful cast of characters with fleshed out personalities, even for mechs such as Titan which is a personality type Kind and caring “grandfather”.
It’s no coincidence that the name of Counter:Side sounds too similar to the FPS hit Counter-Strike. Unlike other gacha RPGs whose character cast is comprised of humans, a unique highlight in Counter:Side is the inclusion of infantry units as well as war vehicles (including Titanfall-esque robots ) as playable characters. They are not limited to a small number, but a whole faction exists. For gacha mobile game fans or military enthusiasts, this will be a breath of fresh air as the genre mostly features waifus or marios. There’s more to the characters themselves, as the majority of them have a niche and are bound to be useful in some way (except for a few really bad apples, like PZH Mobile Gun. )
Counter:Side debuted in Korea and is the darling of Studio Bside and is published by multiple companies. Nexon is responsible for publishing in South Korea and Zlong for SEA. However, in a surprising twist, it was announced that Bside would run the helm himself and self-publish the game worldwide. Aligning with the standard of many others in its genre, the majority of server update patches (SEA, Japan) closely follow Korea, with occasional changes to its release schedule as seen in SEA where some characters are released earlier than expected.
Global counter: list of secondary levels
With that out of the way. In anticipation of the official Global version, we have created a tier list that ranks each character. A key point to note based on the CBT that just ended a while ago, the Global version will likely come with the latest quality of life features that have lessened the drudgery and made life easier. This tier list will take into account the benefit-cost ratio of each character that is only in the Global TCCas well as a short rationale explaining why we think they deserve the ranking.
We will also consolidate the tier list into PvP and PvE. As with most games, some characters are absolutely stellar in PvE and vice versa. We will also only consider despicably harsh endgame content, including Guild Co-op, Danger Close, Relic Dungeons, Shadow Hall, and Raids. We will also update this tier list monthly after the official global release as new characters are added or balance changes affect the existing roster.
Basic terminology to note
Units are divided into several classes, including the main classes of Striker, Ranger, Sniper, and Defender. There are exceptions for some units as they are categorized into one of the additional Siege, Tower, and Support classes. The advantage-disadvantage type applies here with Striker > Ranger > Defender > Sniper cyclically (with Sniper in turn effective against Striker). Additional classes, however, are neutral to other classes. The delegation does not stop there, the units are further grouped into three factions namely Counter, Soldier and Mech, Counter being the dominant class.
The meter consists mostly of human individuals with superhuman abilities and an arsenal of flashy abilities to boot. Soldiers are normal humans (or in some cases counters with birth defects that make their superhuman strength questionable) armed with firearms and usually come in pairs or triads. Last but not least is the Mech faction (also the coolest in my opinion) which consists of mechanical cold steel weapons of destruction and sometimes artificial intelligence.
As usual the golden rule applies here, S tier are some of the best units you need to bring to have a chance in PvP as they are the most impactful group in the metagame. Even in PvE scenarios, these units make it a cakewalk. On the other side of the spectrum we have Tier N units which are useless in any scenario and scrapped for currency