Welcome back Explorers! After a busy few weeks occupied by tournaments, major updates and specially themed events, “This or That” is finally back to its regular programming! While we traditionally compare creatures that are in the same tier and of equal rarity, today’s article will break the mold a little. Since the dawn of time, analysts have wondered which is better: Utasinoraptor or Utarinex. One a legendary and the other a unique, how hard could the decision be? If only it were that simple. These two feathered beasts are just so good that choosing between them can be mind boggling. Join us as we take a closer look at their strengths, weaknesses and how they hold up against the most popular dinos in the arena. 

Utasinoraptor

The first thing anyone will notice about this hybrid is just how devastatingly beautiful it is. If looks could kill, Utasinoraptor would be the most lethal thing ever, even giving Zoolander a run for his money for being “really, really ridiculously good looking.” From the sleek body frame of Utahraptor to the regal crown of Sinoceratops, this legendary is just as fun to look at as it is to battle with. Lucky for us, it’s quite easy to make as well. Utahraptors are a global anytime spawn and amongst the easiest ingredient dinos to find. Open up the game anywhere, anytime and there’s a good chance there will be one waiting for you. Combined with endless amounts of Sinoceratops themed events Ludia has graced us with, Utasinoraptor may just be one of the easiest legendaries to level. If you need a little extra epic DNA, just stroll over to L1, night or day. This legendary’s talents are more than just skin deep however. The last 2 updates graced it with a speed boost, damage boost AND a decelerating move.

At 127, Utasinoraptor is faster than all but a handful of creatures in the Dinodex. It even outspeeds it’s unique! For the few that beat it to the punch, slowing strike is a good option to even the playing field. Be careful though, the recent change to Superiority Strike (now slowing 50% as well) can negate this effect if coming from a faster dino (Diloracheirus), but it can still be quite effective against Indoraptor, Spinotasuchus and Tanycolagreus to land a second move back to back. When paired with Instant Charge, Utasinoraptor can do a TON of damage in succession, leaving the opponent to just sit there and take it’s wrath.

Health is unquestionably its weakest feature, but more often than not, its speed will let it act first to distract and conquer. Distraction will drop the enemy’s attack by 50% for 2 turns as long as its not immune, but remember, if you stun them with Instant Charge, that counts as a turn as well! The opponent will be able to land a full hit 1 turn sooner now. In this scenario, it’s best to be patient and let distraction do its thing and then drop Instant Charge afterwards for a 75% chance of landing 2 back to back hits. The defenses don’t end there; 15% armor may not seem like much, but can make all the difference in those close battles.

Utasinoraptor can definitely take a hit, but it can also give them too! Each of its impact moves can drop a whopping 2385 HP worth of damage, and that’s without a crit! One thing to make note of, however, is its Critical Impact. Many creatures with this move have a different base critical chance. The monstrous hits you may have seen with a buffed Spinotasuchus or Tryostronix are boosted from a base critical chance of 20%. Utasinoraptor has a meager 5%. This means that landing a critical with this move is a coin toss and shouldn’t be taken as a guarantee.

When put head to head against the top 10 most popular dinos on the leaderboard, Utasinoraptor out speeds Trykosaurus, Utarinex, Thoraldosaur, Stegodeus, Tenontorex and Tryostronix. Leading with distraction followed by critical chance and then instant charge is a great strategy to turn these guys into fossils. The 4 faster dinos that pose more of a threat are Diloracheirus, Indoraptor, Spinotasuchus and Erlidominus. Sadly, a match-up with Diloracheirus is most likely to end in a loss. Equipped with superiority strike and a distracting move of its own, the Green Chicken poses a major challenge. A Spinotasuchus match-up is most likely to end in a Romeo & Juliet type of death where our beautiful Utasinoraptor bleeds after landing its impact move and instant charge combo to finish off the bleeder before dying itself. Indoraptor and Erlidominus match up are heavily RNG dependent. If that evasive/cloak holds, your bird is cooked. If not, cheers on your victory! Slowing strike is the best initial move against a fresh Indoraptor however. You’ll get that free second hit, but be warned evasive stance and cleansing impact are almost guaranteed to follow.

Utarinex

This unique became a fan favorite rather quickly (and for good reason too!) Back in the day, it had everything a competitive player could ask for. It was fast, dropped ridiculous first turn damage, distracted, stunned and could even run away. There really wasn’t much left to be desired with Utarinex and that’s probably why 85% of the Top 100 players in Season 5 had one. To witness how much this dino was loved, look no further than the community-wide backlash when rumors of its “nerf” came about. For whatever reason, this unique did experience a pretty significant change in the 1.6 update:

Of greatest importance, Utarinex saw its Distracting Rampage water down into a Distracting Impact. As with Utasinoraptor, it’s basic Strike also became Slowing Strike. Does this mean all is lost though? I certainly don’t think so. Sure, it can no longer one-shot its opponent with a monstrous first turn rampage, but there is still much to be loved. An extra 1000HP worth of love! It may lack the armor its legendary ingredient has, but the health boost is MASSIVE! Not just that, the last several updates have brought major meta changes. We’ve seen a dichotomy between the damage doers and the hit & runners (read more here). Rinex is well equipped against both. Distracting impact and over 4000 HP really makes this bird a fighter. It will take hit after hit and should things get too sketchy, it’s out of there (but not without doing a little damage first).

Because of this, it is just as formidable against the top 10 dinos as Utasinoraptor. The speed difference between 126 and 127 against these dinos makes absolutely no difference! A difference in basic damage output is a meager 40 points and while it may not have a Critical Impact move, the added HP and ability to flee makes the beloved Utarinex a more survivable dino than Utasinoraptor. When it comes to avoiding 3 losses in battle, this makes all the difference. Impact & Run can easily be turned into a strategic advantage as well. Pairing it with a Swap-In move (SIA DSR for example), has the potential to cause your opponent some serious harm and even turn a likely loss into a surprise victory!

The Showdown

Both of these dinos are fantastic to say the least, but putting your best foot forward is crucial in the arena. For that reason, Utasinoraptor is more likely to win in a one-on-one match against Utarinex (assuming Utarinex decides to stay put). That +1 speed makes all the difference in this one specific battle. When working as part of a team, Utarinex is far superior though, and that is the reality of the situation. The extra effort of hunting down Dracorexes to create and level this unique with more health and the ability to flee will benefit you significantly in the long run.

Parting Words

Well there you have it folks! Up against each other, Utasinoraptor is the likely champion, but Utarinex is far superior for scoring victories (or avoiding losses) in the arena. There are some important situations that support leveling Utasinoraptor instead of creating Utarinex however. If you don’t frequent L2 or have a limited Dracorex supply, an over-leveled Utasinoraptor can still be a major asset to your team. Likewise, if you plan on adding some teeth to your team with Thoradolosaur, splitting Sinoceratops among two uniques won’t be the easiest of tasks. In this case, have your cake and eat it too by adding Utasinoraptor and Thoradolosaur to your squad! With a potential 500 Sinoceratops DNA available from weekly alliance missions and the completely bonkers Valentine’s Event going on now, there’s a lot of potential to take your team to the next level. Good luck Explorers and happy hunting!