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Fade taunt.gif
"Now there's something you don't see everyday, thank god..."
Kharaa.png Kharaa
Personal Resources
Icon personal resource neutral.png 35 (+5 per Evolution)
250 (+5 per Biomass)
80 (93 / 107 / 120)
Icon resources energy neutral.gif 100 (110 / 120 / 130)
Spawns From: Fade Egg
Air Speed: 14 (Blink)
Ground Speed: 6.2 (7.7 / 9.2 / 10.7), 10 (Step)
Crouch Speed: 3.1
Abilities and Upgrades
Alien Vision, Evolve Menu, Hive Sight, Swipe, Blink (Blink Jump), Metabolze, Advance Metabolize, Stab
Carapace, Regeneration, Aura, Phantom, Adrenaline, Celerity
Metabolize at biomass 3, Advance Metabolize at biomass 6, Stab at biomass 7
Buy From: Evolve Menu
Purchase By: Player
Gestation Time: 25 seconds


The Fade is a mysterious and elusive Kharaa lifeform. It is a bipedal and humanoid alien creature with sharp blades for hands.

It is an extremely dangerous organism, known for its cunning intelligence and supernatural-like power to inexplicably move from one location to the next, in the span of the blink of an eye. Because of it's viciousness Marines are trained to remain vigilant and alert when in presence of a Fade, lest they succumb to the rapid Swipes and lethal Stabs of its blades. The Fade's namesake refers to its Blink ability that allows the Fade to move at high speed and quickly fade from sight. Scientists theorized that the Fade is capable of manipulating subspace to open wormholes. Perhaps the Bacterium sensed the Fade's genetic potential and selectively evolved it for such purpose?

New dissection of Fades has found a new series of glands under its arm pit which could aid its Metabolism and allow the Fade to gain energy by flapping its arms to stimulate these glands. More advance form of this ability is said to enhance combat effectiveness by helping a Fade recover some health as well as energy.


These are the shock troops of the Kharaa: versatile, tough, and highly specialized to combat. Disturbingly humanoid, Fades demonstrate powerful melee damage – which when combined with the seemingly supernatural blink ability, make them powerful all-around brutes, whose cunning cannot be underestimated.

The Kharaa are so sneaky, it took some time for Frontiersmen to realize the blink ability existed at all. Fades seemed to appear and disappear with no rhyme or reason, penetrating seemingly air-tight defensive perimeters, or vanishing from a heavy fire fight without a trace. Marines soon reported these creatures "fading" away right before their eyes. Though we now understand there is a hive ability responsible for this phenomena, we are no closer to truly understanding how it functions.

A similar evolution to the Skulk's bladed feet, the Fade's arms end in long, deadly sharp blades. TSA scientists speculate that, left to their own devices, Fades might have eventually evolved some sort of opposable thumbs. Instead, the bacterium pushed them to develop these sword-like claws, that their ape-like arms swing in armor and metal shredding arcs.

The so called "blink" ability is one of the more contentious topics for scientists studying the Kharaa. One side believes that it is our observations that are incorrect, that there is an optical illusion of some sort at work, making Fades appear to teleport, apparently through solid matter. They believe that, at the most, entirely new bodies are created at the destination – a kind of variant of the redemption evolution. The other side believes that there is a phenomena similar to Frontiersmen phase gate technology at work … some organic, highly evolved ability that exploits the loophole in physics called the Kensky/Libovah effect. There are significant weak points in both arguments. But this phenomena undoubtedly exists: footage exists of Fades disappearing from one side of a wall, and appearing on the other, or instantly covering the space between them and their target.


The Fade excels at punishing mistakes by Frontiersmen. Shadow Step and Blink give you a speed advantage over the slower marines - no enemy unit is as quick as you are. Performing Blink Jumps can allow you to cover large areas of the map rapidly with little energy consumption. Hit-and-run tactics are the Fade's strength - chase down fleeing marines using your speed and slay them before reinforcements arrive, or ambush attack forces, leaving them disoriented and wounded. Coordinating such attacks with fellow Fades, Skulks or Lerks can leave eliminate entire Marine squads.

As Fade, do not engage in direct combat with Marines. Your fragility means you will die quickly against a coordinated group. Even blind panic-fire can eat away at your health rapidly. However, you can also make Marines waste ammunition by Blinking around and tricking them into firing at you out of fear. Then, retreat and allow your teammates to kill the Marines as they reload.

You are also well-suited to disrupting the enemies' operations; many commanders tend to send two or three Marines to perform any given task, which makes them easy targets for you. This is even more effective a tactic when your enemies are distracted by building or repair work.


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

Slot Abilities


Swiping at a Marine

Swipe is the Fade's primary melee attack that excels at dispatching Marines through high damage. Use your movement abilities to appear next to potential targets and assassinate them quickly, before retreating for drawing attention to yourself. While Swipe has high player damage potential, it has low structure destroying power; demolition is a role best suited for Skulks, Gorges, and Oni.

Swipe slot.gif
Slashes a target with razor-sharp blades that deal extra damage to players.
  • Against Players: Damage x 200%
Hotkey 1 (slot), Mouse1 (attack)
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 7
Damage 75
Type Light
Range Melee
Fire Rate 0.65 seconds
Targets Marines, Robots, Structures


Blinking into Tram's Hub

Blink is the Fade's signature secondary ability, the first of two unique movement mechanics that grants high movement and maneuverability. The Fade's infamy stems from its preference for hit-and-run tactics made possible by Blink.

Blink phases the Fade into Hyperspace, the science fictional realm that allows faster-than-light travel, to ride the warp current and move forward at high speed. Phasing into Hyperspace is only a partial process, so the Fade's body retains physical mass and can be damaged. Although being in Hyperspace will accelerate the Fade indefinitely, it must continuously expend energy to remain inside. It is ill-advised to travel by Blink for extended periods of time; with your energy drained, attacking or escaping becomes difficult.

Blink Jumping is the Fade's second of two unique movement mechanics and the most energy-efficient. By Blinking for a moment, releasing the button, then jumping along the ground, the Fade retains its momentum without using energy. However, Blink Jumping is a predictable movement pattern best utilized for long distance travel and less for combat purposes.

Blink slot.gif
Enters hyperspace to travel forward quickly.

While Blinking:

  • Appears as a shadowy mist.
    • Collision does not change.
    • Continues to receive damage.
  • Accelerates the Fade's move speed.
    • Hold to increase move speed continuously.
    • Tap to increase move speed temporarily.
  • Player perspective gradually changes to violet color scheme.
Hotkey Mouse2
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 14 (start), 32 (channel)
Speed Base speed + 9.6
Cooldown 0.4 seconds
Targets Forward, Self
Blink Jump
How to Blink Jump:
  • Tap Blink once then release button.
  • Continue to jump after touching the ground to retain momentum.
Hotkey Mouse2 (Blink) + Space (jump)
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 14
Speed Base speed + 9.6
Targets Ground, Props, Structures


Shadow step thumb.jpg

Metabolize is the Fade's recovery ability that can be researched at Biomass 3. It allows the Fade to recover some energy (default key "Shift"). During the use of Metabolize, a Fade can not attack. While it costs an initial energy amount to use Metabolize, the Fade can quickly recover its cost and gain excess energy. At Biomass 6 Advance Metabolize can be researched, which will recover some health as well as energy. Metabolize is a crucial ability for Fades to return on the offensive with little downtime for retreat.

Metabolize plus.png
The Fade recovers some energy.
  • Waves arms to recover some energy
  • Advance metabolize replaces Metabolize when researched
  • Advance Metabolize recovers some health as well as energy
Hotkey Shift
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 11
Cooldown 0.73 seconds
Targets Self
Requires Biomass level 3, Research Metabolize then Biomass level 6, Research Advance Metabolize


Stabbing an Exosuit by surprise

Stab is the Fade's short range ability that deals massive damage in one hit. Although a powerful attack, Stab will slow the Fade's movement when it is lifting its arms; this drawback can be negated by using Shadow Step when preparing to Stab, either to catch up to a target or to dodge incoming attacks.

Stab slot.gif
After a short delay, the Fade uses both scythes to stab a target for high damage.
  • The Fade cannot Blink during the attack delay.
  • The Fade can move during the attack delay
Hotkey 3 (slot), Mouse1 (attack)
Energy Icon resources energy neutral.gif 30
Damage 160
Type Normal
Range Short Ranged
Delay 2 seconds
Targets Marines, Robots, Structures
Requires Biomass level 7, Research Stab


  • The Fade could Double Jump prior to Build 250, since Blink required research and Shadow Step only allowed horizontal movement.
  • Fade Shadow Step was removed in build 268 as Blink duplicated this ability.