Should You Buy A Guide For Heroes of the Storm?

This post is meant to help people deciding whether they should even bother buying a Heroes of the Storm guide.

The short answer: Yes, you should buy a guide, if you’re the impatient and competitive type. I’m both those things, so I didn’t feel like I wasted my money on a paid Heroes of the Storm guide. (And if you’re curious about what guide I bought – it’s this bundled package from Killer Guides which covers all four roles.)

To make this post as useful for your decision-making dilemma, I’ve listed the pros and cons of buying a paid guide for the game based on my very recent experience.

Pros and Cons of Buying a HotS Guide

Pros

I didn’t have to Google search every little question I had about HotS. All the essential information is compiled in one place. In my case, Killer Guides let me download eBook files for Assassins, Supports and other roles.

  • I can sneak in a quick read during game lulls. I play with a dual-screen computer, so I have the guide open in one screen and the game on the other. During screen loading times or whenever I’m just waiting to respawn, I read up on the abilities and talents of my hero which helps me not suck as much even though it’s my first time playing the hero.
  • I learn cool insider tips. It tells you a lot of smaller, but still very useful things to know about HotS that are not covered by the in-game tutorial. These are the types of things you may find scattered in Reddit threads – such as how to abuse a certain hero ability – and it’s served in a platter.
  • I get to comprehensive hero and map strategies. It’s great to see a different take on a hero or map, and this either confirms what I already know or convinces me otherwise. Engaging in forum discussions gives you the same effect, but we all know that some threads get derailed and opinions don’t get fleshed out that well. And it could not help you much when you are facing an unknow hero for the first time. A paid guide presents strategies on almost every aspect of the game and it’s interesting to see what the author has to say.

Cons

  • You need to spend cash. If you buy the guide, you have less money to spend on a new hero. However, it compensates you with the gold section showing strategies to gain in-game gold effectively.
  • You could be judged for it. Seriously. I had one friend complain that I only won because I was using a guide. It might make your friends insecure because you suddenly have a “cheat sheet” to help you to victory.
HotS Warrior Guide_FullHotS Specialist Guide_Full

Do I Need A Guide? Here’s a 4-Point Checklist

  • Am I tired of searching Google for information about the game?
  • Am I willing to spend money to learn about the game?
  • Do I want a cheat sheet for heroes compiled in one place?
  • Do I lack a veteran player friend who can teach me the ropes?

If you answered ‘yes’ to any of the questions above, then by all means, grab this guide. You’ll save yourself from a lot of trouble and frustration.

What I Liked and Disliked About My Killer Guides

If you liked the pros I listed above, then you’ll want to find the best paid guide for your money’s worth. I can’t say much about the other guides out there, so I’ll just focus on what I liked and disliked about my purchase.

Liked

  • Clearly written and organized. I found the guide to be a light read. It was also structured in a textbook format with table of contents, so I can quickly jump to the page I wanted.
    Solid tips overall. The guide paid for itself with the tips I got on how to use champions to their best potential, which talents to prioritize and how to win matches through smart objective play. Reading the guide made me a better, smarter player.
  • Good reference to have. Unless Blizzard drastically changes the game and significantly alters the design of heroes, the guide seems like I can keep on using it forever. The tips and tricks really work, and seem to have come from very experienced players.
  • Free updates. Then there’s the fact that should there be new features, heroes and skills adjustment, I can just download a newly updated version.

Disliked

  • Not all the heroes are covered yet. Blizzard is quickly adding heroes and the guide does not seem to be completely updated. The current hero that is still missing is Kael’thas. They promise to update it for free, so I’m hoping to download those sooner than later.
  • No screenshots or videos. If you’re the visual type who likes seeing screenshots or watching videos, then this might not be for you. But the guide text is pretty readable so there’s at least that consolation.
HotS Assassin Guide_FullHotS Specialist Guide_Full

What You’ll Find In The Guide

As a friendly favor, I’m also going to give you a rundown of the major contents in the guide I bought. This should further help you decide if you’ll be as satisfied with the Killer Guides bundle as I was, or if you may want to look at other guides.

1. Heroes
The first section gives you a summary of each hero in that role, how to use the abilites and heroic abilities, which talents are best chosen from level 1 to 20, situational builds, and great gameplay tips to make you play a lot smarter. This section alone improves my gameplay a lot.

2. HotS Features
This second section walks you through all the features in Heroes of the Storm. This was a great complement to the in-game tutorial. It explained some things more clearly, and gave a better perspective of everything in the game.

3. Battlegrounds
This third section gives an overview of all the battleground maps. I’ve played other base-destruction games before, but Heroes of the Storm probably has the most variety in maps. It’s great but can get a bit confusing due to the number of objectives you have to keep track of, so this section helps refresh your memory.

Probably one of the best sections in the guide is the discussion on early game, mid game and end game. And what you should do in each situation. I knew instinctively that the game evolves the longer it goes on, but the guide explained what I should be doing in certain portions of the match.

4. Gold Section
This final section drops hints on how you can quickly earn gold. Some are already common knowledge, but there are several suggestions that will make you think “Oh yeah, why’d I miss that?” Every bit of extra gold counts, and as long as the methods aren’t shady, it’s nice to have a guide that enlarge your pocket and makes you rich.

The way I see it, a paid HotS guide is not an absolute necessity. You can win games without having read a guide, or even spend sometimes to look at forums or wikis, for that matter. But if you want to have detailed strategies by your side that you could take a quick look at it everything you want, this Heroes of the Storm package is surely worth the investment. Of cause it won’t instantly make you a god-like player, but at least it will teach you the solid strategies of playing with each hero. It will also get you in the right mindset on how to win games and become a more valuable player for your team.

Sylvanas’ Assassin Build

sylvanas-HoTS-2

Sylvanas, although a specialist, can easily fulfill the role of an assassin due to her extreme mobility and agile character. With both highly mobile and highly damage-dealing, Sylvanas resembles Valla. Both can fill either role anytime despite one specializing in hero damage and Siege damage for the other. However, Sylvanas is very squishy and not particularly tanky due to her high damage and mobility. She can quickly dash to the front and take an enemy out when it’s at low health. Other than that, she has to stay back and support her team from there.

Sylvanas’ kit can be complemented perfectly with a multitude of abilities. In addition to Haunting Wave which grants her escape, she has also abilities that can give her many damage-dealing and kiting options. Not to mention that Haunting Wave makes Sylvanas a perfect assassin, agile, mobile and able to dish out a lot of damage, as it can also be used to catch up to enemies. All of these almost a doppleganger for another agile, high damage assassinValla.

Abilities

withering-fireWithering Fire (Q)
Shoot the closest enemy for 25 (+3 per level) damage, preferring Heroes. Stores 5 charges.
Gain 1 charge on nearby enemy Minion or Mercenary deaths, and 3 charges on nearby enemy Hero deaths.

One of Sylvanas’ many damage-dealing abilities. Due to it having a low cooldown and costing no mana, it can dish out a lot of damage. In addition to that, this ability also gains stacks (max 5) for every minion or hero kills, and starts out with 5 stacks. This can annoy many opponents as it can be easily spammed and is Sylvanas’ main harassment ability. This also allows Sylvanas to kite opponents froma range and helps capitalize on Sylvanas’ nobility. This ability is like a ‘bread and butter’ move.


shadow-daggerShadow Dagger (W)
Deals 10 (+3.5 per level) damage and an additional 40 (+14 per level) damage over 2 seconds to target unit. The effect spreads to nearby targets.

This ability is great at harassing the enemy. It is great when clearing minion waves or when harassing multiple enemy heroes in group, as it can be tossed from a range. It is especially handy in killing an enemy before they can escape or in getting the last hit out on them, especially when used with Withering Fire.


haunting-waveHaunting Wave (E)
Send forth a wave of banshees dealing 30 (+11 per level) damage to all targets. Reactivate to teleport to the banshees’ location.

This is the ability that gives Sylvanas the most mobility and utility. She can basically Vault to wherever location she chooses using this ability. However, when waiting for the wave to travel, she can be vulnerable. It both acts as a Vault mechanism and as Sylvanas’ AoE damage, so it’s more like a dual purpose ability. Use this ability to get out of harm’s way when you’re low on HP. You can also use this ability to Vault to an opponent if you need to catch up to them.


wailing-arrowWailing Arrow (R)
Shoot an arrow that can be reactivated to deal 200 (+20 per level) damage and silencing enemies in an area for 2.5 seconds. The arrow detonates automatically when it reaches maximum range.


possessionPossession(R)
Force an enemy Minion to fight for you. It gains 20% Attack Damage and Health. Cooldown increased to 20 seconds when used on Catapults.

These are Sylvanas’ heroic abilities, and both have different uses. Disrupting an enemy team in an assassin build is Wailing Arrow’s primary purpose. Whereas, giving you lane advantage by quickly turning an enemy lane against each other is Possession’s use. This lane advantage then gives your team an advantage in objectives or camps by pressuring the enemy team to defend. Both of these abilities can be extremely devastating if used right, despite Possession looking a bit dull at the moment.


black-arrowsBlack Arrows (Trait)
Basic Attacks and Abilities stun Minions, Mercenaries, and Towers for 1 second.

This is Sylvanas ‘ trait that can freeze towers and forts allowing it to be taken down much more easily. Although it is mainly for a laning build and not particularly suited for an assassin build, this trait is still vital in supporting the team. This also allows her to chase enemies sans taking extra unnecessary damage, by freezing minion waves lowering the damage the wave inflicts.This is Sylvanas ‘ trait that can freeze towers and forts allowing it to be taken down much more easily. Although it is mainly for a laning build and not particularly suited for an assassin build, this trait is still vital in supporting the team. This also allows her to chase enemies sans taking extra unnecessary damage, by freezing minion waves lowering the damage the wave inflicts.


Talent Build

with-the-windLevel 1: With the Wind
Increases Withering Fire’s range by 25%

This can give your no mana quick cool down talent a buff, making it the best talent on this tier. Having extra range goes a long way, since Withering Fire is your main damage dealing ability. While preventing enemy’s shots from hitting you, it can also, at the same time, allow for kiting enemies due to its extra range. Enemies trying to escape and are at low health can also be easy to catch. This talent is extremely valuable in an assassin build as it can make all the difference when securing a kill.


envenom-talentLevel 4: Envenom
Activate to poison an enemy Hero, dealing 180 (+30 per level) damage over 5 seconds.

For second ability, this is a popular choice for most. Even when an opponent have ran out of your range, this extremely good talent still allows for you to get the kill. Sylvanas’ Withering Fire and both mobility also has synergy with Envenom. You can spam your Withering Fire ability when Sylvanas is retreating or kiting. Turn the tide of battle by popping Envenom in your opponent quickly. It is the usual go-to choice as there are no other talents that are as useful.


remorselessLevel 7: Remorseless
After using an ability, your next Basic Attack within 3 seconds deals 25% additional damage.

Since there are other much better choices, Remorseless is not usually recommended. However, this talent seems to be the best choice as the others are mediocre. Since Withering Fire has no mana cost and has low cooldown, it has also good synergy with Remorseless. Spamming this ability at your enemies is very much doable. Almost every shot you fire will have an increased 25% damage, instead of the 1 or 2 shots that have a 25% increased damage. This is very valuable in standard build and gives Sylvanas an extremely high damage output bonus making it very significant.


wailing-arrowLevel 10: Wailing Arrow
Shoot an arrow that can be reactivated to deal 200 (+20 per level) damage and silencing enemies in an area for 2.5 seconds. The arrow detonates automatically when it reaches maximum range.

In this build, Possession doesn’t really hold any value in an assassin guide, therefore Wailing Arrow is the better ultimate for Sylvanas in this build. Although Possession may be useful in a laning build, it may still look underwhelming and Wailing Arrow can outdo it in every way. It is not only great for team support by giving a long-range silence and damage ability, but also in AoE damage when the enemies are grouped up in clumps.


evasive-fireLevel 13: Evasive Fire
You gain 10% Movement Speed for 2 seconds whenever an enemy is hit with Withering Fire, stacking up to 30%.

Most would pick Evasive Fire because it provides tremendous amount of utility. It can help you catch up with enemies and escape from them. What’s more, it can help you gain up to 30% movement speed with the speed boost that stacks. This can make escaping a whole lot easier and almost no enemy can make it out of your grasp. This talent also has good synergy with With The Wind.


blood-for-blood-talentLevel 16: Blood for Blood
Activate to steal 15% of target enemy Hero’s Max Health and slow its Movement Speed by 30% for 3 seconds.

Since it helps slow enemies enabling catching up to them and helps Sylvanas regain some of her lost HP, this is probably the best choice at this tier. Considering that Sylvans has a low HP pool and is very squishy, that is extremely good.


deafening-blastLevel 20: Deafening Blast
Enemies at the center of Wailing Arrow’s explosion take 50% more damage and are silenced for twice as long.

Since the damage increase on Sylvanas’ ultimate is a significant 50%, most people would go for Deafening Blast. Also, it allows your team to take control of any team fight due to the increased duration of silence.

If you want to make your game to the next level, then this HotS guide is for you. Written by a group of expert gamers, it comes with a list of detailed hero analysis with detailed builds, battleground strategies, and even the gold making guides. It's the best Heroes of the Storm guide I have seen so far.

Kael’Thas The Assassin Mage Build

hots-heroes-kaelthas

If you want to make your game to the next level, then this HotS guide is for you. Written by a group of expert gamers, it comes with a list of detailed hero analysis with detailed builds, battleground strategies, and even the gold making guides. It's the best Heroes of the Storm guide I have seen so far.

Kael’Thas, The blood-elf prince of Quel’Thalas joins the Nexus now! His role is an assassin. Single target and area of effect damage can be potential gameplay for Kael’Thas. He can be as potent as Zeratul/Nova burst, with a crispy combo lined up on one target. That makes him more than just an AoE champion. Many champions will no longer try to engage you 1v1 once you achieve full build.

Abilities

verdant-spheresVerdant Spheres
Cooldown: 6 seconds

Activate to make your next Basic Ability more powerful. Has a 6 second cooldown.


flamestrikeFlamestrike (Q)
Mana: 70
Cooldown: 7 second

Deal 74 (+20 per level) damage in an area after a short delay. Deal 111 (+30 per level) damage, and increase the radius by 50% with Verdant Spheres.

Target an area, and deal some nice damage after a short delay of about 0.5 seconds. The delay may seem longer than really is. Its effective area, when drawn on the floor, is a bit smaller than it really as , just as all areas in HotS.

Area is increased and damage is also increased by 50% with Verdant Spheres. Though the damage increase may seem nice, and the area increase may seem immense, it is actually not that big. Nevertheless, this allows for preventing enemies from channeling (like returning Doubloons in Blackheart’s Bay), and gives extra reach to destroy targets on the run. Once Chain Bomb is attained, should restrict using Flamestrike in such cases. The damage increase before that is quite good.


living-bombLiving Bomb (W)
Mana: 50
Cooldown: 10 seconds

Enemies are dealt 60 (+18 per level) damage over 3 seconds, and when they explode, nearby enemies are dealt 30 (+9 per level) damage. Previous Living Bomb explodes immediately once a second Living Bomb is cast.

This ability loses coldown and uses no mana when used with Verdant Spheres.

Target and put an enemy ablaze. It does a bit less damage than Flamestrike and ticks for 3 seconds. In the end, it can do half the damage of a DoT when it explodes in an area. All in all, it has less damage as an AoE, but as a single target, does more damage than Flamestrike, when fixed with Chain Bomb.

It can be used twice in a row, and can be spammed every 6 seconds, with is mana use and cooldown nullified when used with Verdant Spheres. Since one can become mana-hungry while on lane, the first strategy is strongly advised.


gravity-lapseGravity Lapse (E)
Mana: 85
Cooldown: 13 seconds

Stun the first enemy hit for 1.5 seconds.
Stun first 3 enemies hit when used with Verdant Spheres.

Stun (lifts into the air) the first target hit for 1.5 seconds by launching a slow forward-moving skill. Since it an appear shorter than it seems, be aware of the short range. Make some extra aim to hit moving targets due to its low speed. Although Nether Wind can’t be used too often, things get better with it. You can also use it immediately after Pyroblast for a “free” cast, when in 1v1 with someone.

It hits three targets instead of one, when used with Verdant Spheres. On team fights, that’s really some big deal. It’s a huge advantage if one can manage to stun three enemies, even if you miss some damage. It is an important decision making to choose between empowering Gravity Lapse or Living Bomb. Save the stun to use with a trait, and start with the bomb, if your team has good initiators.


phoenixPhoenix (R)
Mana: 40
Cooldown: 40 seconds

Deal 10 (+8 per level) damage to enemies along the way by launching a Phoenix to an area. The Phoenix persists for 7 seconds, splashing for 50% and attacking enemies for 10 (+8 per level) damage.


pyroblastPyroblast (R)
Mana: 80
Cooldown: 50 seconds

After 2 seconds, cast a slow-moving fireball that deals 300 (+65 per level) damage to an enemy Hero and 150 (+32.5 per level) damage to enemies nearby. Has a 50 second cooldown.


Talent Build

mana-addictLevel 1: Mana Addict
When you pick up a Regeneration Globe, increases your maximum Mana by 15.

A constant state of no mana can be prevented when taking this talent. Mana Addict is a mandatory talent. In the later game, when mana is running slow, constant pressure that can normally be applied with extra 300-400 mana from Mana Addict cannot be applied without this talent.


nether-windLevel 4: Nether Wind
Increases Gravity Lapse’s range and speed by 30%

It is highly competitive with the other selections and with Gravity Lapse’s range and speed increased, it is just simply fantastic. Critical stuns on the target can be improved with the increase in travel time speed. The best choice would still be Nether Wind.


fission-bombLevel 7: Fission Bomb
Living Bomb’s explosion damage is increased by 75%.

The entire build will depend on this key. No other talent in this tier can compete with Fission Bomb. Other than a CC type build, this talent is mandatory for all KT.


phoenixLevel 10: Phoenix
Deal 10 (+8 per level) damage to enemies along the way by launching a Phoenix to an area.
The Phoenix persists for 7 seconds, attacking enemies for 10 (+8 per level) damage and splashing for 50%

With the Phoenix being unkillable and able to zone extremely, using it will depend on the map and team set up. Some people have preferred Phoenix over Pyroblast. To make a decision, evaluate the game and your team composition. In team fights, some players have used Pyroblast as an opener in some competitive games. Threats like Jaina or Valla, or enemies’ support Hero can be taken out from the team fight if you have a good position. Take note that this approach can be extremely risky and position is key. For certain, you can tip the advantage to your team’s favor if it works. In an ambush or as initiation for a team fight, Pyroblast can be used as great set-up. With coordinated teams, it can be used quite well. Its ravel time is quite slow and the 2-second cast time can be interrupted despite looking good on paper.


chain-bombLevel 13: Chain Bomb
Living Bomb’s explosion applies Living Bomb to enemies.

When in group fights, you can get more damage output with the more bombs you have going. It is able to literally nearly kill an entire team by being seriously chained to multiple champions. Running away champions are also chained to each other and die. The build really takes off after this tier.


igniteLevel 16: Ignite
Flamestrike also applies Living Bomb to Heroes.

Completing your nasty combo and throwing out even more bombs could do with a little help from Ignite. For some AoE poke, empoering your Flamestrike can also be achieved. If you want to zone or poke from a safer distance, this is a good strategy.


bolt-of-the-storm-talentLevel 20: Bolt of the Storm
Activate to teleport to nearby location

If Gravity Lapse is on cooldown, Kael’Thas can really use the escape.

Heroes of the Storm Blackheart’s Bay Tips

Blackheartsbay

If you want to make your game to the next level, then this HotS guide is for you. Written by a group of expert gamers, it comes with a list of detailed hero analysis with detailed builds, battleground strategies, and even the gold making guides. It's the best Heroes of the Storm guide I have seen so far.

Blackhearts Bay is a map with three lanes that varies in length. The bottom lane is the shortest while the top lane is the longest; the bottom lane is easier to push contrary to the fact that it holds 3 mercenary camps. One mistake you should not do is turning the coins immediately the game starts, this consistently make the Blackheart first attack vulnerable and less powerful even though it may lessen the risk of you dying and loosing the coins. The Blackheart cannon shots have enough strength and can bring down the whole towers, the healing fountain, and the gate .This will bring the fort to almost half health since they normally attach the middle lane first. You therefore need to take down one or more towers to ensure that the first canon volley takes down the fort.

Game Strategy

Never turn in before taking down a tower since most of the experience is concentrated on the fort,  It is recommended to push the gate or one of the front towers and then turn in to allow the cannon to to destroy the fort so as to enable you gain two thousand experience. After the last parch, other towers will earn you four hundred experience and eight hundred experience points for the port. When your team have doubloon while your opposing team lacks doubloon, you shouldn’t attack them as they have nothing to lose while you do. You may lose your advantage if you choose to fight them. If you manage to get a head, you can take the full control of all mercenary camp and provide them with coins hence putting pressure on your enemies. You should get the control of the map so as to earn you chests as they appear and these increases your advantage. It is a good strategy to put a specialist who can push a lane fast to the bottom lane. The deeper you can push the larger area you can control.

How to Win

When a fight starts, you should be very careful not to lose the engagement as these will lead to loosing the golem. When you take the golem, you should defend it properly and allow both teams to go back to the south of the map so as to enable another team force to return coins to Blackheart. At the end of the fight you should manage to turn in while having some coins so as to enable you dominates. When both teams go back and take their mercenary camps, never get caught up in a fight near the south chest as one of your heroes may die and you may lose a lot of coins. You should maintain your map control and stay close to Blackheart .This will enable you to win since you will be able to kill most of the enemy’s heroes.

In conclusion, Blackheart’s Bay is a unique map that is mostly found on the quick match. It has a lot of good features such as its design, the coin mechanic and, the multitude of the playing areas that makes it adorable to play. However it is rarely played at the professional level nowadays. The game is as good as it maps though some maps may be viable at the highest stage.

Nova’s Burst Damage Build

nova

Nova is a ranged assassin who specializes in stealth play, burst damage, and picking off squishy heroes. However, Nova has to be very careful when choosing her battles, being one of the few ranged assassins in the game without a movement ability. The risk of getting two-shot yourself comes in twins with the potential of two-shotting anyone on the enemy team. You’d be probably end up dead if you will ever be spotted out of stealth and your team isn’t with you.

Abilities

permanent-cloak-sniper (1)Permanent Cloak, Sniper (Trait)
Cloak when out of combat for 3 seconds. Taking damage, attacking, or channeling reveals you.

Like Zeratul, Nova’s passive will put her in a state of stealth after being out of combat for 2 seconds. Taking damage, attacking an enemy, or vision abilities can break this stealth.

 

snipeSnipe (Q)
Deals 115 (+31 per level) damage to the first enemy unit hit. Has a 10 second cooldown.

Damage the first target hit with a projectile that fires in a straight line. Due to its incredibly high damage and long range, this is Nova’s signature spell.

 

pinning-shotPinning Shot (W)
Deal 40 (+10 per level) damage to an enemy and slow it by 30% for 2.25 seconds. Has a 12 second cooldown.

Nova fires a targeted shot at an enemy, damaging and slowing their movement speed by 30% for 2.25 seconds.

 

holo-decoyHolo Decoy (E)
Create a Decoy for 5 seconds that appears to attack enemies. Using this Ability does not break Cloak. Has a 15 second cooldown.

This allows Nova to place a clone of herself at a target location, and this is her only defensive ability. Although dealing no damage, this clone looks and acts exactly like Nova, firing her same abilities. This ability does not break stealth upon use.

 

triple-tapTriple Tap (R)
Locks in on the target enemy Hero, then fires 3 shots that hit the first enemy Hero or Structure they come in contact with for 80 (+33 per level) damage each. Has a 100 second cooldown.

Firing three projectiles, this is a long-ranged targeted channeled spell. Dealing damage each time, these shots strike the first Hero or Structure they come in contact with.

 

precision-strikePrecision Strike (R)
After a 1.5 second delay, deals 300 (+35 per level) damage to enemies within an area. Unlimited range. Has a 60 second cooldown.

A nuke detonating after a 3 second delay at a targeted location and damages all enemies caught within its blast. This ability has an unlimited range.

 

Talent Build

ambush-snipeLevel 1: Ambush Snipe
Increases Snipe’s damage by 20% when used from cloak or within one second of being cloaked.

Damage of your Snipe is increased by 20% when used from stealth or 1 second after breaking out of it. Buffing your Snipe is essential to this build, as it is the main source of damage.

 

gathering-powerLevel 4: Gathering Power
Passively grants 5% Ability Power. Each Hero take down increases this bonus by 2% to a maximum of 15%. This bonus Ability Power is reset to 5% on death.

This is best option. For every hero you kill, this talent grants a permanent 8% increased ability power and then an additional 2%. This bonus can stack up to 12% and is lost upon death. As an assassin damage is king, even if this does make you play extra safe when you have high stacks.

 

anti-armor-shellsLevel 7: Anti-Armor-Shells
Your Basic Attacks deal 250% damage, but your Attack Speed is proportionally slower.

Although it increases the damage by 300%, this talent makes your auto attacks 3 times slower. This is great for a burst assassin who can’t afford to get caught out of position. Without losing any damage, you can go back in stealth in between auto attacks.

 

precision-strikeLevel 10: Precision Strike
Precision Strike: After a 1.5 second delay, deals 300 (+35 per level) damage to enemies within an area. Unlimited range. Has a 60 second cooldown.

triple-tapTriple Tap: Locks in on the target enemy Hero, then fires 3 shots that hit the first enemy Hero or Structure they come in contact with for 80 (+33 per level) damage each. Has a 100 second cooldown.

It is almost always a good move to choose Precision Strike. It has the added global range which can come in handy, and allows you to deal massive damage without compromising your position.

If your team is lacking CC to guarantee your precision strike hits, you can go for Triple Tap. This can also be handy if they have a lot of weak assassins you can get a lot of resets from.

 

headshotLevel 13: Headshot
Reduces your Ability cooldowns by 4 seconds when you kill an enemy Hero.

Everytime you kill a hero by 4 seconds, this passive talent reduces your cooldowns. This includes any form of takedowns, such as assists or simply being near the target. By allowing her to keep firing snipes constantly, it enhances Nova’s playstyle.

 

crippling-shotLevel 16: Crippling Shot
Enemies hit by Pinning shot become Vulnerable, taking 25% increased damage for the duration of the slow.

Crippling Shot is what you’ll want most of the time, at least at level 16. Your Pinning Shot will not only slow your enemy, but also apply a 25% increased damage taken from all sources. Just like adding insult to injury. Here’s an additional 25% just in case your damage wasn’t strong enough. If an enemy team is playing only one tank, and you’re playing in a team, use this to burn down a tank quickly in the first few seconds of the fight. The enemy team will be scrambling unexpectedly.

 

bolt-of-the-storm-talentLevel 20: Bolt of the Storm
Activate to teleport to a nearby location.

In some fights, adding an extra charge to Precision Strike can be useful. But what will allow you to stay alive longer in fights resulting in more damage, is fixing Nova’s main weakness – her lack of mobility.

Falstad’s Burst Damage Build

falstad

Falstad’s duty as an Assassin is to dish out damage killing opponents as fast as possible. The numbers add up when left to his own devices. However, Falstad’s weakness is, he can be taken off from the fight, with some good coordination once he is in the sights of many an enemy Hero. Falstad is a good combination of auto attack and burst damage casting.

Abilities

Annihilate(Z) Flight
Fly a great distance over terrain, instead of mounting.

Similar to Brightwing’s, this is the mount version for Falstad. Ignoring all terrain on your way, you can pick a spot on the map within a fairly large range to fly there every 45 seconds (less with talents). It’s what makes Falstad a a large part of split pushing and acgreat mobility Assassin.


tailwindTrait: Tailwind
For 6 seconds, gain 20% increased Movement Speed after not taking damage.

Falstad staying safer in the game is allowed by this passive. This helps to move faster through the map for objectives or gank enemies, since Falstad has no mounts.


hammerang(Q) Hammerang
Deal 290 (62 + 12 per level) damage and slow enemies by 25% for 2 seconds, by throwing out a Hammer that returns to you.

In dealing damage, this is your bread and butter skill. Be careful though not to miss this skillshot. Due to the 20% slow to enemies, it allws Falstad to both deal damage or escape from a risky situation. The damage increase and depush capacity just gets insane when you receive the Boomrang talent.


lightning-rod(W) Lightning Rod
Every 8 seconds, passively deal 240 (50 + 10 per level) damage to a random nearby enemy. Activate Lightning Rod to deal 240 (50 + 10 per level) damage to up to 4 nearby enemies.

Reduce the damage by 25% each hit by hitting the same enemy multiple times. This is a decent damage skill. It helps with creepwave only passively, but the most important thing is, it can get enemies dismounted. It fills the lack of damage with Hammerang as it deals really decent damage to targets.


barrel-roll(E) Barrel Roll
Grants a 375 (90 + 15 per level) point Shield for 2 seconds by dashing forward. Your unique survival tool in TeamFights.

Use this skill VERY CAREFULY. You can put to instant death if you use this badly. Nevertheless, this skill can position yourself in the right position to fight safer and secure a kill by using it gap-closer. It can also be used as an escape tool by dashing away from risky situations that can even pass through thick walls. Using a dash properly in every moment is what makes a good Falstad.


hinterland-blast(R) Hinterland Blast
After a short delay, deal 280 (+31 per level) damage to enemies within a long line. Has a 90 second cooldown.

Able to deal some hefty damage, this short channeling ability delivers a long linear nuke. Great for picking off low hit point enemies on the run, or for hitting multiple targets from afar.


mighty-gust(R) Mighty Gust
Apply a 60% slow that decays over 3 seconds and push enemies away. Has a 50 second cooldown.

A breath of fresh air! Push back and interrupt any opponents caught in a giant gust of wind that is casted in a linear skill shot. Despite not doing any damage, it does afford a lot of zone control, and opponents that channel will be interrupted.

Talent Build

power-throwLevel 1: Power Throw
Increase the range of Hammerang by 40% and the slow duration by 25% .

For a firt level talent, the range and slow increase on this skill is incredible. It also allows for hitting opponents from a much safer distance. And when the opponents feel safe, you can also cast it through creep waves and buildings to snag kills. You can also burst players from a great distance when coupled with Boomerang.


charged-upLevel 4: Charged Up
Lightning Rod strikes the target 2 additional times.
When trying to bully or chase down an opponent on the run, add up in duels with two additional times. With later Talents and Overdrive, it can also stack up in damage. So, it is pire win to max out on the hits Lightning Rod does.


boomerangLevel 7: BOOmerang
Reactivate Hammerang mid-flight to deal 25 (+12 per level) damage around the Hammer.

Re-activate the Hammer any time during its flight to have it explode in a small area of effect. This adds some nice damage to the targets affected. Since you have the choice of when to blow it up, it becomes a very useful burst tool. And you can still hit targets with the explosion even if you miss the hammer by a hair.


hinterland-blastLevel 10: Hinterland Blast
After a short delay, deal 280 (+31 per level) damage to enemies within a long line. Has a 90 second cooldown.

For many a reason, this is the Heroic of choice for many. First of all, it will not require for getting up and personal with enemies. Falstad can be brought low or killed in a damage rotation by teams with heavy CC and Disables like Muradin. To deal with them, Hinterlands Blast can allow for lining up the skillshot for maximum damage and serves as a good long range sniper. However, it has a hefty cooldown, and you need to aim well since if you miss shot, you’d be out of a good bit of damage for a while.


thunderstrikesLevel 13: Thunderstrikes
Lightning Rod deals 15% more damage each subsequent strike.

As you subsequently strike targets, more damage adds up. This multiplier just keeps on going with an extra 2 strikes from Charged Up. Since the strikes do some significant impact in team fights, it makes for a great dueling talent..


overdrive-talentLevel 16: Overdrive
Activate to increase Ability Power by 25% and Mana costs by 40% for 5 seconds.

Your damage can really pop with this one! Overdrive affects ALL of your abilities, and with this extra 25% burst, it can really make the difference in some of these team fights. However, make sure to budget your mana, as in order to get the full effectiveness of this talent, it will require the extra 40% mana cost.


epic-mountLevel 20: Epic Mount
Reduce the cooldown of Flight to 20 seconds, reduce the cast time before flying to 0.5 seconds, and increase the speed by 50%.

For any Falstad play, this is arguably the best talent one can have. Not only does it affords a great degree of map control because of the reduced cooldowns and cast time, it can also save your bacon more than once. And since this is the only defensive talent we take in this build, it is more effective than Call of the Wildhammer as well.

Recommended Team Composition in HotS

HotS Team Composition

If you want to make your game to the next level, then this HotS guide is for you. Written by a group of expert gamers, it comes with a list of detailed hero analysis with detailed builds, battleground strategies, and even the gold making guides. It's the best Heroes of the Storm guide I have seen so far.

When it comes to Heroes of the Storm, team composition is everything. The number of warriors, assassins, specialists and supports is an integral tactic that will make or break your ability to dominate a map.

The Best All Around
1 Warrior
2 Assassin
1 Specialist
1 Support

With this build, all of your bases are covered. You have 1 warrior to tank the damage and lead in engagements. There are 2 assassins to bring down enemy Heroes. The 1 specialist can join team fights but is also key to pushing towers and grabbing mercs. The 1 support keeps the entire team alive during fights. Everyone has a specific job and, when done well, can win virtually every game.

As a side note, the warrior and support picks have to be a full warrior and full support for this to work. “Full” means a Hero designed to play their role and nothing more. In amongst the warriors and supports, you’ll find a myriad of secondary picks. For warriors, these include Arthas, Sonya and Anub’arak while secondary supports feature Tyrande and Tassadar. Each of these Heroes have the qualities of the role they play but either do more damage at the expense of less health or provide shields and stuns over direct heals.

The Untouchables
1 Warrior
1 Secondary Warrior
1 Assassin
1 Support
1 Secondary Support

In this composition, you will be nearly impossible to kill. With the warrior being able to soak more than twice as much damage along with a virtually immortal assassin, the enemy team will not be able to outlast you in engagements. Typically, for the assassin, many go with the heavy melee damagers, like Illidan, who become more powerful the more they hit. Combined with two warriors to soak and deal more damage, they’re unstoppable so long as they know what targets to focus down.

The only weakness is that there is no specialist. This means you’re lacking a Hero designed to go off on their own to both defend lanes while applying pressure. To do this with such a composition, everyone needs to stay together all the time. If they become split, the enemy can quickly capitalize and take you out one at a time. Once this happens, it’s nearly impossible to come back from the brink of destruction, especially considering the enemies will be doling out a lot more damage.

The Killers
3 Assassin
1 Specialist
1 Support

Truth be told, healing isn’t everything. All assassins come with what is known as a survivability build. Though squishy, they can invest in talents that heal them through basic attacks and abilities. Many also come with either First Aid like Raynor or Blood for Blood, giving them a late game self-heal. So long as the assassins build in this direction and know how to back from a fight, the damage output is jaw dropping. Even against a team with a dedicated warrior, few can withstand the firepower this grouping masters.

As powerful as this combination is, it is also extremely squishy when not played defensively. The goal with this composition is to kite the enemies long enough to get them out of position and get a kill. Once the first enemy goes down, it’s relatively easy to pick off the remaining opponents. A lot of the success rides on knowing when to back, always sticking together and taking advantage of opponents laning alone. Keeping their numbers uneven is the key to dominating using this build.

Illidan’s Full Throttle Build

HoS_illidan_hero_hd

In Heroes of the Storm, there are three melee assassins, and one of them is Illidan. If not played right, he can become very vulnerable and squishy since he doesn’t have shields like Kerrigan or stealth like Zeratul.

Illidan has incredible mobility so you use it to weave in and out of combat when teamfighting. In order not to die before able to dish out any real damage, don’t overextend into the backline.

Illidan is much better suited to a 2v2 lane despite being capable of laning in a 1v1. This way, he can step out and solo merc camps, while his teammates are still around to soak XP from the lane.

However, Illidan is not one Hero that is easy to pick up. Nevertheless, you can become a force to be reckoned with in no time, with time and practice.

Abilities

betrayers-thirstTrait: Betrayer’s Thirst
Basic Attacks heal for 20% of damage dealt and reduce your Ability cooldowns by 1 second.

Illidan is considered by many a good pick because of this trait. Illidan is one of the most squishy heroes in the game, if stripped off of his abilities. And you will keep on dying all the time if you can’t use them correctly.


dive(Q) Dive
Dive at the target, dealing 45 (+5 per level) damage and flipping to the other side of the target. Has a 6 second cooldown.

Leap onto a target and jump in front of it, with the use of this amazing chasing tool. This can be used to leap through obstacles such as towers or forts, or to body block an opponent.


sweeping-strike(W) Sweeping Strike
Dash towards target area, dealing 60 (+10 per level) damage to enemy units along the way. If you hit an enemy, Basic Attacks do 35% more damage for 4 seconds. Has a 8 second cooldown.

Do not use this to engage an opponent, as that is what Dive is for. Instead, try to have this ability available at all times if you can. Only resort to Sweeping Strike if you already used your Dive and your opponent is still escaping. As a rather squishy melee assassin who has no stealth, you will need this very much being your only escape tool.


evasion(E) Evasion
Evade enemy Basic Attacks for 2 seconds. Has a 15 second cooldown.

Using it too early or too late can be fatal, so time this ability well. Always help an ally if he/she is taking damage from a merc camp. If your Evasion is off cooldown, always tank both hard and boss camps.


the-hunt(R1) The Hunt
Charge to target enemy unit, dealing 150 (+20 per level) damage on impact and stunning for 1 second. Has a 60 second cooldown.

This can be used to snowball the game in your favour even further, if you are far ahead. This can also stun your opponents and can be useful against Valla using a Strafe. In order to escape from death, The Hunt can be used on any mob. Due to Illidan’s trait affecting ultimate’s CD, and despite being mostly used to engage, you can sometimes find yourself being able to use it twice in one team fight.


metamorphosis(R) Metamorphosis
Transform into Demon Form at the target location, dealing 200 (+10 per level) damage in the area. Gain 100 (+15 per level) temporary max Health for each Hero hit and 20% increased Attack Speed for 18 seconds. Has a 120 second cooldown

This is much better in longer team fights, with its decent AoE damage, making it a less risky ultimate choice.


Talent Build

shadow-shield seasoned-marksman
Level 1: Shadow Shield or Seasoned Marksman
Shadow Shield: Evasion grants a 62.5 (+12.5 per level) point Shield for 5 seconds.
Seasoned Marksman: For every 6 enemy Minion or Mercenary kills near your Hero, gain 1 Basic Attack damage. Hero Takedowns count as 2 Minion kills.

Once you stack Seasoned Marksman up to 30, it can ebe quite good. However, Illidan is very vulnerable in early game, and Shadow Shield can really help out in that regard. The choice between the two will depend on personal preference.


immolation marked-for-death
Level 4: Immolation or Marked for Death
Immolation: After using Sweeping Strike, burn nearby enemies for 13 +2.5 per level damage a second for 4 seconds.
Marked for Death: Your next Basic Attack on the Dive target deals 100% more damage.

In terms of AoE damage and single target damage, Immolation outdoes Marked for Death. However, it is a bit tricky as it has to tick every time during those 3 seconds. If you want more burst potential, Marked for Death is better. It’s also quite handy in quickly going in to harass an opponent, and then retreat instantly.


first-aid-talent
Level 7: First Aid

Activate to heal 35.49% of your max Health over 6 seconds.

It is best to give Illidan more durability as he is very squishy.


the-hunt metamorphosis
Level 10
Situational

Just go for the hunt if you are rolling the snowball, just as what is mentioned in Abilities. Choose Metamorphosis if you want a stable teamfight.


giant-killer sixth-sense
Level 13: Giant Killer or Sixth Sense
Giant Killer: Basic Attacks against enemy Heroes deal bonus damage equal to 1.5% of the Hero’s max Health.
Sixth Sense: Take 50% reduced damage from Abilities while Evasion is active.

Damage against tanky heroes can be boosted with Giant Killer. And for an assassin role, it is a common talent. However, just choose Sixth Sense if you worry about enemy’s burst damage.


blood-for-blood-talent stoneskin-talent
Level 16: Blood for Blood or Stoneskin
Blood for Blood: Activate to steal 15% of target enemy’s Max Health and slow its Movement Speed by 30% for 3 seconds.
Stoneskin: Activate to gain 30% of your Max Health as a Shield for 5 seconds.

Choice in this tier is based on personal preference. Blood for Blood is a good choice if you want to pick off enemy’s tank such as Arthas or Chen quicker. Stoneskin is your friend if you care about your survivability.


bolt-of-the-storm-talent demonic-form nowhere-to-hide
Level 20: Situational

If you think you don’t need blink, Bolt of the Storm (Activate to teleport to a nearby location) can grant you a mobility while improving your ultimate. You choose depending in your heroic ablity.

Transform into a beast assassin withDemonic Form (Permanently remain in Demonic Form. Increases the Attack Speed bonus of Demonic Form to 30% and grants a 50% reduction in the duration of disabling effects.)

Nowhere to Hide (The Hunt now has a global range) gives you badass initiation.

Heroes of the Storm Pushing Guide

HotS battle
One will often hear Heroes of the Storm being described as a game about “choices”. Generally, these statements reflect the nature of focusing on objectives, focusing on player kills, or focusing on lanes.

While objectives are important to Heroes of the Storm gameplay, there are times when ignoring the objective and focusing on the lanes (“pushing” your frontline into the enemy base) is going to award your team a stronger position when all is said and done.

Pushing Lanes in Heroes of the Storm

Pushing is an important feature of Heroes of the Storm strategy. It is essentially the idea that your frontline of minions has advanced to the point where they are dealing damage to the enemy team’s structures. Structures are worth an incredible amount of experience, and the team that manages to down some structures first will often have a level advantage, which will make the next team fight that much easier. This is to say nothing of its contribution to the all-important goal of clearing a path to the enemy team’s core.

The best times to push are when you can do safely. Often times this will be when you have a map objective, such as the Webweavers. It’s also a good idea to apply pressure to a lane after a team fight where you have a numbers advantage. For example, if your team fights over the tribute on Cursed Hollow, and you traded one kill for three, your team loses almost nothing by charging the closest pair of towers and destroying them, and then running back to your lanes before the enemy can counter.

“Split pushing” is a term for when your team is applying pressure in two places at once, be that objectives and one lane, or two different lanes. For example, the enemy team may send five people to that same tribute, but your Azmodan, now uncontested, can break down the towers and fort while the enemy is busy fighting your other four team members in the far lane. It is also strong with map objectives in your control, such as the Dragon Knight. The Knight can solo push a single keep in the late game, while the other four team members attack another. This forces the enemy to choose where to defend, and they will almost certainly lose a keep. This can leave you vulnerable, however, and for games where the team fights (and levels) are very close, sticking together is probably the safer strategy.

Which Heroes Can Push?

Heroes of the Storm has an entire category of heroes dedicated to pushing lanes called “Specialists“. While all specialists are built around the idea of pushing a lane, some are significantly better equipped for the job.

The best lane pushers are, generally speaking, Zagara, Gazlowe, and Azmodan. Each of these heroes’ tool kits summon minions (to block tower and minion damage directed at them), and possess talents built around battling structures over players. If any of these heroes appear in your match, you can almost guarantee that they will be trying to push lanes as much as, if not more than, fighting with their team.

Other specialists will likely focus on lanes more than their assassin, warrior, and support counterparts, but will also likely be involved heavily in team fighting and objectives. Sylvanas is often played as a hybrid-assassin, but her “Black Arrow” trait is a powerful lane pushing skill, especially when supported by a team.

As with all heroes, the categories are broad, and many do not fall in the extremes of “pure” specialist, support, assassin or warrior. There are heroes in other categories who hybridize the specialist role quite well.

Raynor is perhaps the best example. His “Inspire” ability boosts friendly minions and mercenaries, allowing for stronger lane pressure against the opposing side. He also possesses several talents which are typically found in specialists such as “Mercenary Lord”. Sonya is an example of a warrior who is excellent at pushing lanes. She deals immense AoE damage to minions, and with the combination of her “Superiority” talent and “Wrath of the Berserker” heroic ability she can solo clear camps, walls and towers safely even without the aid of minions.

This is not to say that heroes without these specialized kits cannot push lanes, independently or in concert with their team. But they do so with an increased risk, and must be much more careful about how they go about it. Further, all heroes can aid their team’s specialists in pushing lanes, multiplying their effectiveness exponentially.

HotS battle 1

Hiring Mercenaries

Mercenaries are important pushing tools, acquired by killing their “camps” and standing on the control point for a few seconds. Siege Giants (“easy camps”) destroy structures, and Bruisers (“hard camps”) absorb an immense amount of tower fire for your team. Bosses are extremely powerful mercenaries which will (usually) require a group effort to take down, but they can destroy an entire line of defense.

It’s important to use mercenaries when you grab them, rather than just taking camps because they’re open. You generally want to attack mercenaries in preparation for a major push into the enemy base, or to apply pressure as a form of split pushing, forcing the enemy team to deal with the mercs, and leave themselves 4v5 in the objective team fight, or lose structures. There are also map-specific points which govern when a camp should be taken, such as grabbing Siege Giants on Haunted Mines so they can attack the enemy golem.

Heroes that summon minions (like Gazlowe and Azmodan) are excellent at taking merc camps, their minions tanking the damage. Heroes who can heal themselves and deal significant damage during battle are also quite strong (such as Arthas, Illidan, and Sonya). Other heroes such as Uther can solo camps, but it will take them much longer, or leave them much weaker. The hero talent “Bribe” will make taking any camps simple, so any hero with it should consider taking it for pushing potential.

If you want to make your game to the next level, then this HotS guide is for you. Written by a group of expert gamers, it comes with a list of detailed hero analysis with detailed builds, battleground strategies, and even the gold making guides. It's the best Heroes of the Storm guide I have seen so far.

Introduction to the Tomb of the Spider Queen

Tomb of the Spider Queen 4

If you want to make your game to the next level, then this HotS guide is for you. Written by a group of expert gamers, it comes with a list of detailed hero analysis with detailed builds, battleground strategies, and even the gold making guides. It's the best Heroes of the Storm guide I have seen so far.

Blizzard has added its newest Battleground to Nexus – the Tomb of the Spider Queen. Destroy enemy minions to claim the Spider Gems they drop in this compact, three lane Battleground that features a dark and moody interior space. Earning the favor of the Spider Queen will require you to turn in enough of these gems. If you did so, she will summon a powerful wave of Webweavers to ally with you and attack your enemies. When your hero die, you drop any Spider Gems you’re carrying but your enemies can’t pick them up. However, your teammates can be denied the opportunity of retrieving these valuable riches by savvy opponents.

To learn more: