(the) Gnorp Apologue: Build for Beating Compression 10

A build I found exceptionally effective at beating Compression 10. So many missiles…



Compression 10 is hard to get to to begin with, and once you’re there the damage needed to win can feel like you’re throwing yourself against a wall. This guide is the build I used to do it, and how I played with it.

Talents and Reasoning

The reasoning behind this build is to get as many damage buffing effects as possible, and generate as many missiles as possible. Thus…

Future to the Back, Return to Sender, Arrow’s Last Hurrah, and Deals
To start, this combination allows riflegnorps to fire ice arrows. Their fire rate is much higher than your actual archers since they don’t rely on the arrow maker before firing. Arrow’s Last Hurrah meanwhile makes it so these rapid fire arrows can be brought to the archers… once you have a Garden, Directors will return these to Archers thanks to Return to Sender, and Deals ensures a very high amount will be returned and that more Zybellium Arrows will be shot by the archers themselves.

This essentially makes the arrow maker irrelevant, your archers will have a constant supply of arrows that enhance the damage of everything else to fire while your gunners will keep freezing the rock, stacking another multiplier on damage. A constant, unending barrage of damage multiplying arrows and constant freezing will stack, resulting in the rock taking 6 times damage when frozen and 3 times when not to the majority of things hitting it.

Bathe in Fire, Timeshift Delivery, Combo Power, Operation: Pocket Rocket Timeshift Retainment
This combo is all about Pocket Rocket cheese to gain more rockets. Critically, every time the Bombers hit the rock with Mountaineers selected for their Inspiration they have a 5% chance to cause all Mountaineers to fire rockets. By the end of the game if you employ my strategy, you’ll have 30 Bombers and 30 Mountaineers, and one level in Timeshift for the bombers. Even without the Operation talent Mountaineers can be caused to fire rockets even if the Bombers timeshift back after a hit, doubling the chances of Mountaineers adding additional rockets. This essentially contributes a substantial number of rockets.

Bathe in Fire helps make the bombers hit the rock considerably more frequently, which means they generate rockets faster. Timeshift Delivery speeds up your Runners, improving their efficiency… since this build is going to cause a lot of timeshifts, it can add up pretty nicely. Combo Power in this case isn’t for the DPS of your Slammers… their damage is unimportant, what IS important is that they keep the rock on fire as much as possible. This requires they reach a seventh Combo hit as often as possible, and Combo Power makes that more frequent. Even 5 levels of jump will improve their fire rate a surprising amount considering that’s reducing the chance of them not comboing each hit by 25%.

Explosive Exposition, Notes, Project: Constellation, Frostfire, Gnorpcalibur Unleashed
These are all related to buffing Gnorpcalibur. With a cheap upgrade at the lab, Weakpoints add 5 clicks worth of multiplier meter each time they are hit and normally appear every 90 seconds. Explosive Exposition with a number of gunners will shorten this, Project: Constellation exists in this build solely to automatically trigger them, and Gnorpcalibur does 3% of the last minute’s damage every time that multiplier meter fills.

Sadly Modern Warfare does not work with this strategy. The synergy between Modern Warfare and Explosive Exposition is strong, but remember we’re relying on gunners for the constant Ice damage multiplier, and doubling the damage multiplier of your Zybellium Arrows is more important… you’re not relying on the Arrow Maker at all once the Garden is built anyway.

Frostfire allows the rock to be set on fire without ruining the Ice buff to damage or scaring away Watchers. Watchers also contribute to weak points appearing more often, so they are Desireable for this build, letting the bar fill noticably more often for Gnorpcalibur damage.

Notes synergizes well here… Gnorpcalibur Unleashed allows the use of the other Accords, most importantly Power, which causes the damage multiplier to effect Rockets at a lower rate than other damage forms. Rockets normally don’t get any damage multiplier, this enhances our main source of DPS and Notes adds to that enhancement.

The Rest
The rest of the talents aren’t there to synergize with one another specifically, but are what I found to be useful additions on their own with the remaining points. Technically this build could be pulled off with fewer points, except that the final set of upgrades requires you have at least 18 total.

The hiking buddies are there to add extra rockets. Runners getting a carrying boost comes in useful overall, since in the late stages we’re going to want damage to noticably exceed the rate of shard collection… that pile needs to get tall fast. So eventually that bonus is always going to be constantly active. More housing is always going to be helpful, so that talent is always good no matter the build. And finally, 5 extra Gnorps and 20% lowered rate of shards being vacuumed back into the rock is well worth the downside even if it sometimes means taking a bit longer to reach the next Compression. It may take longer, but it will be easier.



Either get 30 runners with 30 carrying capacity, or 20 runners with 45 carrying capacity. Max out speed and GEET. You only need to take a break once… the bonus stays active as long as you don’t go on break again, and you shouldn’t be forced to in order to get compression events unless you seriously imbalance your Runners to your DPS. Try to do it early, when you know your DPS will easily cause the next Compression… if you do it midgame then realize without your rockets you don’t have the DPS to cause a compression you’re going to be forced to build drones, which is a waste since they don’t last.

DO NOT exceed this. I once made the grave mistake of getting 40 runners with 45 carrying capacity. I was no longer able to get a Compression, they collected faster than my DPS could go at the time. While you can probably out-DPS them with this build, it will still slow things down quite a lot if you go over this by much and this amount will net you pretty decent income, enough to buy what you need easily enough.

Keep them on the Mountaineer inspiration… you’re going to end up making a bunch of Mountaineers for this strategy and the bonus really helps a lot. Don’t bother with their Teleportation upgrade, you really don’t need it and there’s more important places to spend your Zybellium.

Headbangers Slammers

Extremely early, this is your main DPS. By mid game you will have rockets which will far outstrip them. You will still use them for setting the rock on fire, but as this requires a Zybellium it is actually low on the priority list. Basically don’t buy this upgrade till you have your Bomber upgrades, and only buy the Fire upgrade… the other one does basically nothing with how low their damage is compared to rockets. Around 15 to 20 seems to keep the rock lit most the time with the combo upgrade from talents up.


Obviously buy everything, but especially buy the housing upgrade as soon as you can. This is one of your highest priority upgrades for Zybellium as so many upgrades require Gnorps and you’re going to want lots of Gnorps for other things… Runners, Bombers, etc.

House of Shards

Buy everything except the Academy and Robotics. You won’t need more collection speed than your runners provide and indeed you want to allow DPS to be notably higher to cause Compression Events faster.

Gnorp Propulsion Lab and Cocoa Cafe

I’m putting these two together because this strategy uses Mountaineers solely for the extra missiles. Seriously… you aren’t buying a single upgrade for them other than having a bunch of them exist. The Hulk inspiration and their climbing buddy will provide enough shard rain for your runners, but the main draw is the 5% chance that will proc more frequently than you might think of Bombers causing them to fire rockets. Their climbing buddy contributes too, so with the Hulk inspiration helping your shard income you won’t actually want to upgrade them much… they lower the height of your shard mound if you do, which slows down Compression Events.

Speaking of, Bombers. You’ll want at least 30 by end game with the Pocket Rocket and a single Timeshift Impact upgrade. They’ll contribute significantly to your rocket count thanks to the talent for Timeshift not emptying their Rocket Pockets. The Mountainers will contribute somewhat to shard income and also have a chance for all of them to fire rockets each time the bomber hits… both the first impact and the second with Timeshift.

The 5% chance is deceptive, in that it sounds weak… however, remember that it gives rockets to ALL Mountainers. If you have 20 or 30 mountaineers each time this goes off you’re getting 20 or 30 rockets. It also seems to cause their climbing buddies to contribute rockets as well… so every hit from Bombers has a 5% chance of firing twice as many rockets as the number of Mountaineers you have active, instead of the normal 2 or 3 the bomber themselves contributes per hit. This is why the synergy is so good.

Do not waste Zybellium on the Cocoa Cafe upgrade… seriously, the Mountaineers are there primarily to boost the carry capacity of your Runners and to provide extra Rockets from their Pockets thanks to Bomber Rocket Pockets, and this strategy already maps out where all the available Zybellium should go.

Archery Range
Buy Ice Arrows early and later on once you get the Garden up with its Zybellium, the housing upgrade, and Pocket Rockets, buy the Zybellium Arrows. Your archers will be firing constant barrages thanks to the Watchers bringing arrows the Gunners shot back to them, so they will be constantly trippling damage on top of the Acid and Ice multipliers.

Rock Analysis Lab
Weakspot Discovery and Frequency are key to the build, you can skip Weakspot Weakspot though to save on Gnorps, it’s another thing that really doesn’t scale well into late game, those 5 Gnorps will end up more valuable elsewhere. I doubt anyone needs to be told they should pick up Zybellium Collection. The Zybellium upgrade to reduce the shards the Rock tries to reclaim helps very significantly, I highly recommend taking it… without it, the rock reclaiming shards with massively slow down your progress on Wave 10.


Turn off Red flowers, keep Green and Blue. Red might help collect Shards faster but it also spreads them out, lowering mountain height… more importantly, turning off Red makes the Green and Blue stock up faster, allowing more Watchers and more consistent Acid to be applied to the Rock. Again with maxed speed, the Mountaineer bonus from 30 Mountaineers, and GEET being leveled up as much as possible, the Runners really don’t need any help to be gathering a lot of shards.

In a similar vein, buy both the upgrades for Blue and Green, then ignore Red… you aren’t using it and 8 Gnorps is a really steep cost.

The YX1-AB
Don’t bother with Vulnerability… despite its name, it only makes shards fly further, it doesn’t increase actual damage output. So it honestly isn’t really worth spending a Zybellium on. Get the top upgrade, X Rockets, to 6 or 7… at this point you will notice your Gnorps are rarely throwing Shards into it and it’s constantly launching from the buildup of shard stacks being thrown its way, you really don’t need more than 6 or 7. 5 by itself maximizes the DPS from this upgrade since there is a hard limit to the fire rate of the large rockets from the pads.

The upgrade that actually increases its DPS is the second one, Y Rockets. This one determines how many small rockets the big rocket splits into… as soon as you have 5 X Rockets you won’t get any more DPS from this building other than upgrading Y Rockets as high as possible.

The joy of the last section of the talent tree to open up, with Gnorpscalibur Unleashed you can just buy every one of the upgrades here. It is highly suggested to do so, they are all strong… this build is made specifically to capitalize on the second two, making weakspots appear rapidly with Explosive Exposition and having multiple Watchers on the rock at all times while Operation: Constellation lets the large numbers of rockets you will be producing trigger said weakspots, which advances the multiplier meter. So Gnorpscalliber will be going off multiple times a minute, at times it will be two thirds or more of the damage output of the rockets which are getting their damage multiplied somewhat by the multiplier thanks to the Power Accord.

Endgame Summaries

Zybellium Upgrade Summary
Ranked in general order of priority. You don’t have to buy in this exact order but usually higher up priorities should come first, and in the case of Slammers, having theirs is pointless without the Bombers it’s meant to enhance.

Additional Housing (Stash)
Flower Power (Garden)
Reclaimation Nullification (Lab)
Zybellium Arrows (Archery) (Costs 2)
Pocket Rockets (Bombers)
Fire Breath (Slammers)
Timeshift Impact (Bombers)
Timeshift Impact (Bombers)

Technically you can get away with only one Timeshift, but at this point there’s no more effective place to spent the Zybellium. Gatling Gun might be worth it with Modern Warfare instead of the second Timeshift but doubtful.

Gnorps Summary
30 Runners (30 capacity each, set to Mountaineer inspiration, speed and GEEK maxed)
30 Mountaineers (No upgrades at all, set to Hulk inspiration)
30 Bombers (Highly upgraded)
20 Slammers (Fire upgrade only for Zybellium, max out combo chance and Jumps)
5 Gunners (Ice Arrows, Grenade Launcher)

Spent any extra Gnorps on more Rocket Y upgrades and Bombers.

More Guides:

Leave a Comment