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Defender is one of the eight Operator classes in Arknights.


Defenders have high HP and DEF and can block up to three enemies, with few exceptions. However, they have (with certain exceptions) a low ATK and very short attack range – on the same tile as themselves. For this reason, Defenders are best placed in front of a formation to hold enemies back, draw enemy fire, and protect friendly units behind them.


Branch Trait
Protector Defender
Blocks 3 enemies
Tank Operator, specializes in very high defense
Guardian Defender
Can heal allies by using the skill
Tank Operator with the ability to restore the HP of friendly units with their skills; lower bulk than Protectors
Juggernaut Defender
Cannot be healed by allies
Very strong tank Operator that also has high attack stats and cannot be actively healed but can improve their survivability with their skills/talent(s)
Arts Protector Defender
Arts Protector
Normal attacks deal Arts damage while the skill is active
Tank Operator that uses Arts attacks during skill activations; has higher RES than other Defenders
Duelist Defender
Only restores SP when blocking enemies
Very strong single-block tank Operator with extremely high all around stats, but can only generate SP when blocking enemies
Fortress Defender
When not blocking enemies, prioritizes dealing ranged AoE Physical damage
Strong tank Operator that can use a ranged attack dealing area-of-effect/splash damage with large minimum range when not blocking enemies; fairly high attack stats
Sentinel Protector Defender
Sentinel Protector
Blocks 3 enemies and attacks from long range.
Tank Operator with a ranged attack


Operator Subject Interaction
Military Fortress Increases the ATK of Defenders while Horn is deployed.
  • Elite 1: 10%
  • Elite 2: 20%
  • Potential 5: +3%
Special Operation Strategy Increases the DEF of Defenders while Hoshiguma is deployed.
  • Elite 2: 6%
  • PRO-X Stage 2: 9%
  • PRO-X Stage 3: 11%
  • Potential 5: +2%
Tectonic Armor Increases the maximum HP of Defenders when Nian is in the squad.
  • Elite 1: 8%
  • Elite 2: 16%
  • PRO-Y Stage 2: 19%
  • PRO-Y Stage 3: 21%
  • Potential 5: +4%


  • Along with Sniper, Defender is the only class without a male 6★ Operator.
  • While most Defenders except Duelist and Fortress Defenders can only attack enemies on the same tile as them, all 6★ Defenders excluding Saria have a range of the tile ahead of them like that of most melee Operators, regardless of their branch.