In Awesomenauts, defenders are 'nauts capable of controlling portions of the map by forcing the enemy to retreat or discouraging their approach in the first place. They have (usually) immobile obstacles and dangers that makes them less effective in more action-oriented combats.
In a game, their function is the opposite of that of a pusher: they hold off lanes and other strategic locations so that the enemy forces have trouble advancing. In actual teamfights, however, the defender role is somewhat limited, unless the fight takes place near their defenses.
Common defensive traits
- Capable of effectively defending a position from the enemy team.
- Tend to be stronger when fighting alongside their defenses and less so when away from them.
- Abilities are focused in forcing a retreat and discouraging an approach, rather than direct combat.
As of this moment, Gnaw is the only defender 'naut in the game. The poison effect from his Bite and Acid Spit, while not an immediate threat to the target, can drain enough of their health away to make it dangerous for them to stick around for much longer, often forcing them to go after a neutral creep or a healthpack.
His weedlings, on the other hand, allow him to turn any area of the map into a defendable "fortress" of sorts. Weedling "nests" as they are commonly called can be very dangerous to approach and take down, specially during the early game.
Other characters are able to defend positions too. Yuri, for instance can place mines that not only stop droid advances, but also deny areas for the enemy team, making it harder for them to manouver in the lane.