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Lerk Taunt.gif


Shadow lerk.gif


"It hovars without flapping!"
Kharaa.png Kharaa
Personal Resources
Icon personal resource neutral.png 20 (+3 per Evolution)
125 (+2 per Biomass)
45 (50 / 55 / 60)
Icon resources energy neutral.gif 100 (110 / 120 / 130)
Spawns From: Lerk Egg
Air Speed: 13 (13.5 / 14 / 14.5)
Ground Speed: 2.8
Crouch Speed: 1.4
Abilities and Upgrades
Alien Vision, Evolve Menu, Hive Sight, Flight (Glide), Roost, Poison Bite, Spikes, Umbra, Spores
Carapace, Regeneration, Aura, Phantom, Adrenaline, Celerity
Umbra at biomass 4, Spores at biomass 6
Buy From: Evolve Menu
Purchase By: Player
Gestation Time: 15 seconds


The Lerk is a fierce, agile, and avian-like Kharaa lifeform; it has massive wings which allow it to glide through the air and quickly reach high velocities, often appearing to Marines as an orange blur. As speedy as it is deadly, the Lerk can deliver quick-acting poison through its bite, and shoot razor-sharp spikes in rapid succession from its tubular organs. As the Kharaa grow more Hives, the Lerk can evolve the abilities to exhale thick clouds of toxic spores, and even bullet-disintegrating clouds. With its sharp claws, it can roost onto walls and ceilings to lay in wait for potential prey.


Wiry, fast and fierce, Lerks excel at attacking from a distance. They are small and light - making them difficult targets, but less resistant to damage. If Skulks are hit and run artists, then Lerks are guerrilla fighters without peer, using their speed, mobility, and range to harass marine squads with impunity.

Lerks' relatively low health means that they must avoid making a target of themselves, often hiding in niches and attacking marine bases with their spikes. They often wait, lurking on some shadowed perch, until a target presents itself. The strange spelling of their name can be attributed to the unique and colorful vocabulary of one Commander Ty Sumnish, who brought back from the field a treasure trove of data on the Lerk very early on in the Kharaa/human conflict.


Player Abilities

Alien Vision

Alien Vision highlighting everything in the Frontiersmen base

All Kharaa lifeforms possess hypersensitive retinas that allow Alien Vision (or Dark Vision), which changes the lifeform's perspective in order to distinguish between organisms, structures, and the terrain.

Alien Vision
Aura icon.gif
Toggle Alien Vision mode to highlight all units and structures in white, and the terrain in orange.
  • Brightness is affected by lighting in the room.
  • Red emergency lighting and complete darkness are considered as the same brightness level.
Hotkey F
Targets Players, Units, Structures, Terrain

Evolve Menu

Selecting a lifeform to evolve while inside a vent

The Evolve Menu allows Kharaa players to select different lifeforms and unlocked Traits to evolve using Personal Resources. It contains information about each lifeform, such as name, cost, Health, Armor, abilities, effects of each Trait, and more.

Evolve Menu
Evolve menu icon.gif
Opens the Evolve Menu to purchase different Kharaa lifeforms and available Traits using Personal Resources.
Hotkey B
Targets Lifeforms
Requires Valid ground to spawn player Egg

Hive Sight

Kharaa lifeforms behind a wall

Hive Sight is an innate passive ability for all Kharaa lifeforms. All nearby visible players, units and structures will be highlighted in an orange glow at all times. Friendly players will also be visible through walls, allowing players to coordinate and position themselves against incoming Frontiersmen forces.

Hive Sight
Hive sight icon.gif
Hive Sight highlights all players and structures in an orange glow. When nearby, Kharaa players can see each other through walls.
  • Parasited targets are visible through walls and glow more brightly.
Range 30
Targets Players, Units, Structures

Lifeform Abilities


Lerk trying to fly past Veil's Cargo force field

Flight is the Lerk's unique movement mechanic that grants it the freedom of omnidirectional movement. Although flapping the wings costs energy and creates lots of noise, gliding is both free and silences the Lerk's movement. As an avian creature, the Lerk moves at its fastest when in the air, but awkwardly slow when crawling on the ground. Stay aloft and move unpredictably to confuse Marines and make yourself difficult to target!

Lerk egg icon.gif
The Lerk can spread its wings and soar into the air. While flying, the Lerk gains a move speed bonus.
  • Tap to gain height using energy.
  • Hold to glide without using energy.
  • Crouch to dive downwards.
  • Speed bonus decreases over time.
Hotkey Space
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 3
Speed Base speed + 10.2


Roosting on the Hive's glowing membrane

Roost allows the Lerk to anchor to a nearby surface. It is an excellent ability for ambush tactics or just resting your wings while waiting for energy to regenerate. However, since the Lerk is extremely fragile, staying stationary for any extended period of time is ill-advised.

Roost slot.gif
Digs the Lerk's talons onto a nearby surface to stay in place.
Hotkey Shift
Range Melee
Targets Walls, Props, Structures

Slot Abilities

Poison Bite

Biting and poisoning a Marine

Poison Bite is the Lerk's primary melee attack that deals moderate damage to Frontiersmen units and structures, with the added effect of poisoning Marines on hit. While non-lethal, the poison will slowly deplete the Marine's health, allowing you or other Kharaa lifeforms to deal the finishing blow. Health restoration from the Med Pack will not remove poison, but only prolong the Marine's life expectancy.

Poison Bite
Bite slot.gif
Bites a target and injects poison to deal damage over time to Marines.
  • Poison damage affects Marine's Health only.
  • Poison leaves Marines at 5 health.
  • Poison effect is removed by Armory Resupply.
Hotkey 1 (slot), Mouse1 (attack)
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 5
Damage 60 + 6 per second
Type Normal
Range Melee
Fire Rate 0.3 seconds
Duration 6 seconds
Targets Marines, Robots, Structures


Shooting spikes at a Marine and Exosuit

Spikes is the Lerk's secondary ranged attack that shoots sharp spikes over long distances. Spikes allow the Lerk to chip away at Frontiersmen units and structures from a safe distance, ideally while weaving and dodging against retaliation from the opposition.

Spikes slot.gif
Rapidly shoots spikes over long distances. Spikes deal extra damage to players.
  • Against Players: Damage x 200%
  • Spike projectile travels in a straight line.
  • Spike projectile has a trail effect.
  • Spikes create dust on impact.
Hotkey Mouse2
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 1.4
Damage 9.3
Type Puncture
Range 50
Fire Rate 0.07 seconds
Targets Marines, Robots, Structures


Umbra clouds protecting Kharaa lifeforms and structures

Umbra is the Lerk's ranged area support ability that creates a cloud to shield Kharaa lifeforms and structures inside from incoming bullets. A partial number of bullets from the Assault Rifle, Pistol, Shotgun, as well as Exosuit's Minigun and Railgun, will disintegrate on touching the Umbra cloud, effectively negating the projectiles' damage. Lifeforms moving through the cloud will gain a small puff of Umbra around them for a short time.

Umbra slot.gif
Shoots a puff of smoke that disperses into a large cloud, which protects friendly targets from 1 out of 3 bullets entering the cloud.
  • Umbra lingers on Kharaa lifeforms and structures for 0.25 seconds.
  • Cloud evaporates when burned by Flamethrower.
Hotkey 2 (slot), Mouse1 (attack)
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 27
Range 17
Radius 6
Fire Rate 1 seconds
Duration 5 seconds
Targets Bullets, Railgun, Lifeforms, Structures
Requires Biomass level 4, Research Umbra


Gassing a room with Spore clouds

Spores is the Lerk's area denial ability that creates clouds which cause Marines to choke while inside them. Along with damage over time to health, Spore clouds can act as smokescreens that reduces Marines' visibility and provide cover for other Kharaa lifeforms to close the gap.

Spores slot.gif
Exhales Spore clouds that deal damage over time to Marines.
  • Spore damage affects Marines' Health only.
  • Clouds will drift toward the ground.
  • Clouds confuse Sentry turrets' targeting system.
  • Clouds evaporate when burned by Flamethrower.
Hotkey 3 (slot), Mouse1 (attack)
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 8
Damage 20 per second
Type Gas
Range Melee
Radius 2.5
Fire Rate 0.36 seconds
Duration 8 seconds
Targets Marines
Requires Biomass level 6, Research Spores