Oh good, Helldivers 2's new Automaton Gunships are very real and here to obliterate Super Earth’s forces from the skies

Helldivers 2
(Image credit: Arrowhead)

Much to the detriment of Super Earth's forces, Helldivers 2 players are now contending with deadly Automaton Gunships.

A few short hours ago, Helldivers 2 players began spotting huge cloaked Gunships in the skies above the Automaton worlds. Now, unfortunately, brand new Automaton Gunships are pummelling players into the ground as they're unleashing volleys of laser cannons, making battles a living hell.

We've seen the new flying Gunships for ourselves, and they look like a brutal combination of Hulks and airships - bringing both laser guns and missiles to bear against players. They also boast great armor, so you'll need excellent armor-piercing shots from Stratagem weapons to take the gunships down.

Making matters worse, the Gunships also pinpoint your location with a huge red laser. They scan the Automaton worlds beneath them while combing the planet, searching for Super Earth soldiers to obliterate, so if you find a red laser tracking your Helldiver, run like hell.

Making matters worse is the fact that the Gunships are relatively high up in the air - in short, primary weapons just aren't going to take them down. If you're running in a squad of four, we'd highly recommend at least one player take the Spear Stratagem into battle with you as a reliable anti-gunship measure.

Mercifully, Game Master Joel has seemingly made the Expendable Anti-Tank Stratagem free for all Helldivers 2 players to use for a limited time. Even if you haven't unlocked the weapon, you can now gain access to it in missions, which should help players deal with the new Gunships.

For a lovely look at how horrible the new Gunships are, look no further than the clip below. "I guess when you’re on the brink of extinction, you pull out the big guns… literally," writes one comment, referencing the Automatons losing ground to Super Earth's forces. As a famous line in Star Wars Episode 9: Rise of Skywalker read: "They fly now!"

dear devs, WTF?! from r/Helldivers

This isn't to say that these new Gunships are the same ones that players have reported seeing cloaked above planets over the last day, however. It's clear that those Automaton ships are far bigger than the new Gunships we're dealing with on Automaton planets now, which means Arrowhead could well have another nasty surprise in store further down the line.

Considering Helldivers 2 players have just been celebrating conquering the infamous Malevelon Creek after many months of fighting, Arrowhead clapping back at players felt somewhat inevitable. We'll have to wait and see how the game's player base reacts to the new Gunships - Arrowhead has never been averse to tweaking and changing enemies based on player feedback, so look for this to continue here.

Check out our latest Helldivers 2 weapons guide for a full look at our complete tier list for every gun and Stratagem.

Hirun Cryer

Hirun Cryer is a freelance reporter and writer with Gamesradar+ based out of U.K. After earning a degree in American History specializing in journalism, cinema, literature, and history, he stepped into the games writing world, with a focus on shooters, indie games, and RPGs, and has since been the recipient of the MCV 30 Under 30 award for 2021. In his spare time he freelances with other outlets around the industry, practices Japanese, and enjoys contemporary manga and anime.