“This is a guest post written by Onyx”
The Heroes of the Storm is a game dominated by a stun burst meta. Heroes like E.T.C, Li-Ming, and Xul support that meta, making it less difficult to trap and kill one or more people swiftly. Honestly, not following the standard stun burst team composition can easily be your downfall, however there are some unsung heroes that can make a sustainable team composition viable. The following heroes are hidden gems that are greatly unappreciated due to their perceived lack of impact, but there is more to them than meets the eye and I hope I can help at least one person see their hidden potential.
Lunara – First Daughter of Cenarius
Lunara is an assassin that has the potential to deal a lot of damage very quickly, but what you don’t notice is she can slowly kill you thanks to her poison. The Dryad is quick thanks to her trait, so dodging skillshots and chasing enemies down is much easier for her than most other heroes, even though she does not have a dash unless you take the Leaping Strike heroic ability at level 10. At level 13 she can be deceptively tanky thanks to Greater Spell Shield, making it that much easier to sit in a team fight and cause the health of the enemy team to wither. Her wisp ability(E) can rival Zagara’s vision capability, allowing Lunara and her team to escape before they are attacked, or attack without being ambushed. Lunara is a valuable hero who’s presence is almost always largely ignored.
Anub’arak – Traitor King
Anub’arak is a warrior who at first, seems very run of the mill. His impact is rarely felt thanks to the fact he isn’t particularly tanky. He is not a main tank like Johanna, E.T.C or Muradin, he is a bruiser. However he is not just a regular bruiser, he has the potential to deal a lot of hidden damage. I say hidden damage because the damage doesn’t come from impactful abilities. Anub’arak has a medium range stun that can easily catch you off guard with both it’s range and damage, as well as stunlock potential. Impale (Q), quickly following a well placed Burrow Charge (E) leaves you stunned for 1.5 seconds, which can easily get you killed with follow up from your team, but that’s not all it is useful for. Urticating Spines (LVL 7), Locust Swarm (LVL10), Burning Rage (LVL13) and Hive Master (LVL 20) can cause you to take a lot of damage in that 1.5 seconds. Those talents can also make Anub’arak a hidden threat in team fights. Allowing him to sit there, dealing constant damage to the team, and even cleave damage after level 4 (Locust Needles), can cause your team to be completely wiped out without you knowing where the damage actually came from.
Stitches – Terror of Darkshire
Yet another warrior with a rather unique purpose while being rather dull to the untrained eye. Stitches has some incredible survivability thanks to Devour (E) as well as multiple talents and both of his heroic abilities. Stitches has such a diverse level 1 talent pool, allowing him to reduce ability damage taken, increase maximum health, increase Heavy Slam (W) damage, or increase his healing from Devour. At level 4 Stitches can take Amplified Healing to increase regeneration effects and all healing received by 30%. Stick him with a healer while he eats people for health and he can survive for a very long time. The Abomination’s Hook(Q) can pull enemies out of position and into your team, allowing for possibly an easy kill thanks to your team, or an easy kill thanks to Gorge, by walking back through your gate and getting the target killed by tower fire. Regenerative Bile (LVL 20) with the Putrid Bile heroic ability allows him to survive even longer in team fights while slowing the enemy and damaging them. But again, he doesn’t seem to have too much of an impact outside of a well timed Hook and a Gorge on a valuable target (such as Cho’Gall).
Tassadar – Saviour of the Templar
Tassadar is a support who has very little impact thanks to the fact he has no control abilities outside of Force Wall after level 10, but that is all it is, a wall. Thanks to Conjurer’s Pursuit (LVL1) he doesn’t really have mana issues, allowing you to throw out shields every chance you get, and that is exactly what you should do. Thanks to Khala’s Embrace (LVL7), Tassadar’s shields will remain after the initial 5 second limit has expired, but will be at 50% power. 50% is still not a laughing matter though, it might be what saves someone from death without them even knowing. In fact, a lot of the time people are saved thanks to Tassadar shields but nobody notices, nobody gives the player recognition or a thank you. Why? Well it’s simple, there’s no special animation, no flashy lights, and the shield is only temporary. However that is fine, Tassadar’s always know when they have done their job, whether it be a well timed shield or a well placed Force Wall. Oracle (D) has so little impact, that I haven’t even covered it. The ability to reveal enemies around you is valuable and can save your entire team from dying, but it rarely triggers a thought in the minds of players. Tassadar has always been acknowledged as a purely solid support, but his low impact usually leaves the player out of any recognised glory the team might have had.
Nazeebo – Heretic Witch Doctor
You wouldn’t think that Nazeebo would be here thanks to his Zombie Wall (W), which can trap a player, allowing your team to kill them with little resistance, or completely block off a path. However here he is, but why? Nazeebo’s trait gets very little credit. It’s a weaker Lunara poison, but it can seriously add up, and people don’t even know it’s killing them because his basic attacks have such little impact, but they definitely add up over time. Death Ritual (LVL1) can make Nazeebo deceptively durable if he is allowed to farm minions throughout the game. Corpse Spiders (Q) and Plague Toads (E) are largely ignored even though that can be some of the most infuriating abilities in the game (try mounting when you have spiders trying to eat you). This is because once again, they don’t have a big fancy animation, nor are they particularly powerful, but the damage and annoyance certainly adds up. You might find yourself running from the spiders after a while, even if they aren’t hurting you.
All of these heroes are sustain heroes, or are useful at preventing themselves or others from being killed in the blink of an eye. Every hero has the potential for burst, but these specialise in being useful in other ways.
I know most of you who are here reading this probably know all about these heroes already, but that doesn’t mean you appreciate them or consider using them or even learning them. I recently started playing Anub’arak and have been having a lot of fun, killing people without them realising it. Sometimes, the forgettable heroes can be the most enjoyable ones.