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Abathur Talents

Last updated on Jul 12, 2016 at 13:26 by Straften 11 comments

Table of Contents

Abathur Image

General Information

On this page, we present the viable talent choices for playing Abathur in a competitive environment in Heroes of the Storm. For each talent, we explain what they do and why they should or should not be taken.

The other pages of our Abathur guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.

About the Author

Straften is a Grand Master ranked player in both Hero League and Team League. He has a passion for theorycrafting, and regularly tests new features early on the PTR. He explains his strategy, reasoning, and implementation in these guides.

1. Talent Build

Level Choices
1 Pressurized Glands Survival Instincts Regenerative Microbes ? Envenomed Nest ?
4 Prolific Dispersal Ballistospores ? Sustained Carapace Adrenal Overload ?
7 Needlespine Vile Nest Networked Carapace Calldown: MULE ?
10 Ultimate Evolution Evolve Monstrosity ?
13 Assault Strain ? Bombard Strain ? Spatial Efficiency ? Soma Transference
16 Envenomed Spikes Adrenaline Boost ? Locust Brood ? Volatile Mutation
20 Evolutionary Link ? Evolution Complete Hivemind Locust Nest ?

2. Common Talent Paths

Team Fight Build: Increases the strength of Symbiote for strong team fighting

Ultimate Locust Build: Split-push lanes with Locusts while you clone an ally

3. Level 1 Talents

Pressurized Glands Survival Instincts Regenerative Microbes ? Envenomed Nest ?

3.1. Descriptions

Pressurized Glands Icon Pressurized Glands increases the range of Spike Burst Icon Spike Burst by 25% and reduces the cooldown by 1 second.

Survival Instincts Icon Survival Instincts increases Locust Strain Icon Locust Strain's health by 50% and duration by 40%.

Regenerative Microbes Icon Regenerative Microbes causes Carapace Icon Carapace to heal the target each second for the first 4 seconds that it is active.

Envenomed Nest Icon Envenomed Nest causes Toxic Nest Icon Toxic Nest to deal an additional 75% damage over 3 seconds. If a target takes damage from more than one nest over 3 seconds, the duration is refreshed.

3.2. Recommended

Pressurized Glands Icon Pressurized Glands provides Spike Burst Icon Spike Burst with a reasonable power increase during the early game, and has good synergy with Soma Transference Icon Soma Transference and Envenomed Spikes Icon Envenomed Spikes at Levels 13 and 16 respectively. Pressurized Glands also helps improve your waveclear.

Survival Instincts Icon Survival Instincts will pressure the enemy team by increasing the amount of damage your Locusts can take before going down, as well as increasing the distance they can travel from you before expiring. This talent provides very little benefit unless other Locust talents are also picked up later. If you want to get the most out of Survival Instincts, take Assault Strain Icon Assault Strain or Bombard Strain Icon Bombard Strain at 13, Locust Brood Icon Locust Brood at 16, and Locust Nest Icon Locust Nest at 20.

3.3. Situational

Regenerative Microbes Icon Regenerative Microbes can provide a good amount of supplemental healing while your team is out of combat. It requires Carapace Icon Carapace to be active on the target in order for the regeneration to take place, and the healing will discontinue if the shield is destroyed. This healing can be especially useful for teammates who are far away from your team's healer. When combined with Sustained Carapace at level 4, you can heal almost continuously by cancelling Symbiote as soon as you cast Carapace. This is because the healing takes 4 seconds to complete, which is the same amount of time your Symbiote's cooldown between switching hosts. This technique can be especially useful in matches where your team lacks a healer completely, which can be common in Quick Match (but can occasionally occur in ranked modes as well). Keep in mind that by taking this talent you are passing up 3 options that can increase your ability to waveclear, so make sure your team has sufficient waveclear before considering this.

Envenomed Nest Icon Envenomed Nest dramatically increases the damage of Toxic Nest Icon Toxic Nest, but deals this extra damage over time. Consider taking this if you really need to punish enemy rotations, and are planning on taking other Toxic nest talents at levels 4 and 7.

4. Level 4 Talents

Prolific Dispersal Ballistospores ? Sustained Carapace Adrenal Overload ?

4.1. Descriptions

Prolific Dispersal Icon Prolific Dispersal reduces the cooldown of Toxic Nest Icon Toxic Nest by 2 seconds and increases the amount of charges that you can hold by 2.

Ballistospores Icon Ballistospores allows Toxic Nest Icon Toxic Nests to be used globally and also increases their duration by 25%.

Sustained Carapace Icon Sustained Carapace increases the shield amount of Carapace Icon Carapace by 40%, and allows it to persist after Symbiote has ended.

Adrenal Overload Icon Adrenal Overload increases the attack speed of Symbiote Icon Symbiote's host by 25%.

4.2. Recommended

Prolific Dispersal Icon Prolific Dispersal dramatically increases the amount of times you can use Toxic Nest Icon Toxic Nest. While Adrenal Overload Icon Adrenal Overload is strictly better if you have allies that can take advantage of the increased attack speed, Prolific Dispersal is a fantastic alternative if your team lacks such a Hero. Prolific Dispersal has strong synergy with Vile Nest Icon Vile Nest at level 7, even in the absence of Envenomed Nest Icon Envenomed Nest from level 1.

4.3. Situational

Ballistospores Icon Ballistospores can be useful on very large maps, where you may otherwise need to reposition to place Toxic Nests in optimal locations. In the event that you lose your Forts on large maps, you may not be able to place mines in meaningful locations at all without this talent. This talent will also allow you to travel Globally via Deep Tunnel Icon Deep Tunnel, as Toxic Nests grant vision once they mature. This can be useful if you plan on pushing with a Locust oriented build on a large map. On smaller maps Toxic Nest Icon Toxic Nest has a large enough range that the mines are already essentially global without this talent, making Prolific Dispersal Icon Prolific Dispersal a superior choice in those situations.

Adrenal Overload Icon Adrenal Overload significantly increases the damage potential of Heroes whose kit revolves around Basic Attacks for damage (or for other effects), like Illidan. Heroes that do not rely on Basic Attacks to deal damage benefit much less from this talent, although it can still be a good choice in specific situations. For example, it synergises with Blessed Momentum Icon Blessed Momentum on Johanna and Spectral Leech Icon Spectral Leech on Leoric.

4.4. Not Recommended

Sustained Carapace Icon Sustained Carapace has specific synergy with Regenerative Microbes Icon Regenerative Microbes from level 1. In addition to the effectiveness of this combo as described in detail above, this talent also increases the shield's strength; however, Sustained Carapace will yield very little value without the synergy from Regenerative Microbes. It is not recommended to take this talent combo unless your team needs the supplemental healing from Regenerative Microbes to be amplified. When your team requires the healing from these two talents, you can round out the build by taking Locust talents at levels 13, 16, and 20. Assault Strain Icon Assault Strain will be the best choice at 13 when lacking Survival Instincts Icon Survival Instincts from level 1, as something beneficial will happen when your Locusts die.

5. Level 7 Talents

Needlespine Vile Nest Networked Carapace Calldown: MULE ?

5.1. Descriptions

Needlespine Icon Needlespine increases the damage and range of Stab Icon Stab by 20%.

Vile Nest Icon Vile Nest causes Toxic Nest Icon Toxic Nest to Slow enemies by 40% for 2.5 seconds.

Networked Carapace Icon Networked Carapace causes Carapace Icon Carapace to apply an untalented Carapace shield to all nearby allied Heroes, Minions, and Mercenaries.

Calldown: MULE Icon Calldown: MULE is an activatable talent that summons a MULE at the targeted location for 40 seconds. The MULE attempts to repair nearby individual allied Structures in an area around it, healing them at the rate of 100 Health per second and replenishing their Ammo at the rate of 1 per 3 seconds. Calldown MULE has a 60-second cooldown.

5.2. Recommended

Needlespine Icon Needlespine increases Stab Icon Stab's effectiveness dramatically, allowing Abathur to deal much more damage in team fights. The additional range can be especially helpful if the enemy team is made up of multiple ranged Heroes.

Vile Nest Icon Vile Nest can be extremely annoying for the enemy team. Delaying enemies' movements by a few seconds here and there can help your team secure objectives and kills, and reduces the effectiveness of enemy rotations and ganks. Vile Nest has great synergy with Prolific Dispersal Icon Prolific Dispersal and Ballistospores Icon Ballistospores.

5.3. Situational

Calldown: MULE Icon Calldown: MULE should almost always be taken on Sky Temple, because it gets insane value due to the way the main objective plays out there. It is a situational pick on other maps. Calldown: Mule is especially effective on Abathur because you are able to apply pressure and push lanes during all stages of the game, while also keeping your own Structures alive. With this strategy you can win many games through attrition, picking off enemy Structures one by one. Note that you should only have one Calldown: MULE on your team, so coordinate with allies that may also take Calldown: MULE ahead of time.

5.4. Not Recommended

Networked Carapace Icon Networked Carapace is predominantly a PvE talent focused on pushing empty lanes by keeping large numbers of Minions and Mercenaries healthy. Although it does apply shields to nearby Heroes, these shields are very weak as they are untalented. You will get more value out of the other options at this tier.

6. Level 10 Talents

Ultimate Evolution Evolve Monstrosity ?

6.1. Descriptions

Ultimate Evolution Icon Ultimate Evolution clones a target allied Hero, allowing you to control the clone for 20 seconds, at which point it dissipates. The clone spawns next to the original target and does 20% increased ability and Basic Attack damage, and has 10% increased movement speed. The clone functions identically to the cloned Hero, but you cannot use talent-based abilities or Heroics. When controlling a clone, Abathur's body disappears from the map for the duration, making Ultimate Evolution a possible escape if Abathur's body becomes comprimised. If the clone dies, it provides the enemy team with XP equal to 25% of a Hero kill.

Evolve Monstrosity Icon Evolve Monstrosity turns an allied minion or Locust into a Monstrosity. The Monstrosity functions the same as a minion and will head down the nearest lane. When enemy minions near the Monstrosity die, it gains 5% maximum health and Basic Attack damage, stacking up to 40 times, or 200%. The Monstrosity takes 50% less damage from Structures and minions. If you target it with Symbiote Icon Symbiote, you can control it directly in addition to Symbiote's normal benefits. The Monstrosity cannot collect Regeneration Globes, pick up Gems or Coins, or participate in map objectives that need to be channeled. It can capture Mercenary Camps, the temples on Sky Temple, and the shrines on Dragon Shire. Pressing R with a Monstrosity active will automatically cast Symbiote Icon Symbiote on the Monstrosity and move your camera to its position.

6.2. Recommended

Ultimate Evolution is a fantastic and versatile Heroic ability. It should usually be used on high damage Heroes, as these clones will benefit the most from the extra Ability Power and Basic Attack damage. The ideal clone will have high ability based or Basic Attack damage, as well as a gap closer to help you secure kills. Cloning Tanks will yield less damage, but can be useful if more crowd control is needed.

Use Ultimate Evolution just before a team fight breaks out. Play the cloned Hero as an extremely aggressive version of themselves, as Abathur will not actually die if the clone dies, so it is in your best interest to have the clone absorb as many of the enemies' abilities as possible. Note that since Abathur disappears from the map while the clone is active, Ultimate Evolution can be used to escape ganks if it is not possible to use Deep Tunnel Icon Deep Tunnel to escape. However, do not forget that Abathur will reappear at the same location he started once the clone ends.

6.3. Situational

We recommend that you take Evolve Monstrosity when playing on Cursed Hollow, Blackheart's Bay, Sky Temple, or Garden of Terror and you do not have an ideal target for Ultimate Evolution Icon Ultimate Evolution. The reasoning is twofold. Firstly, the map must be large enough that the enemy team cannot easily traverse the map and kill the Monstrosity. Secondly, being able to clone a Hero that has high damage and gap closers will provide more benefit than Evolve Monstrosity by allowing your team to more easily win team fights.

Evolve Monstrosity should be used in a lane with lots of enemy minions and when no enemy Heroes are nearby. This gives the Monstrosity time to gain stacks, increasing its health and damage. If you create the Monstrosity with enemies near, it will be killed before it can have any meaningful impact. When the Monstrosity is pushing down a lane, there is no need to control it with Symbiote Icon Symbiote, except to soak XP. However, there are some situatons where you can or should control it. If the enemy team is coming to kill the Monstrosity, you should have the Monstrosity flee, making the enemy team waste a significant amount of time chasing it (if they wish to do so). When the Monstrosity is pushing Structures, avoid having it take Tower shots, instead allowing allied minions to absorb the shots. Lastly, you can take the Monstrosity into direct combat. It can be incredibly strong against enemy Heroes, especially if you have built up stacks on it.

7. Level 13 Talents

Assault Strain ? Bombard Strain ? Spatial Efficiency ? Soma Transference

7.1. Descriptions

Assault Strain Icon Assault Strain modifies Locust Strain Icon Locust Strain, causing Locusts' Basic Attacks to cleave nearby enemies for 50% damage. In addition, Locusts explode upon death, damaging all nearby enemies.

Bombard Strain Icon Bombard Strain modifies Locust Strain Icon Locust Strain, causing Locusts' Basic Attacks to become a long-range siege attack, dealing 67% more damage.

Spatial Efficiency Icon Spatial Efficiency causes Stab Icon Stab to gain 1 additional charge, and decreases the cooldown of Stab from 3 seconds to 2.5 seconds.

Soma Transference Icon Soma Transference causes Spike Burst Icon Spike Burst to heal Symbiote Icon Symbiote's host for every enemy Hero hit.

7.2. Recommended

Soma Transference Icon Soma Transference can heal the host for a significant amount of health, especially if Symbiote Icon Symbiote is on a melee Hero who will be within range of multiple enemy Heroes. Pressurized Glands Icon Pressurized Glands synergises very well with this talent.

7.3. Situational

Assault Strain Icon Assault Strain can be useful if you want to increase the amount of pushing that your Locusts are capable of, but could not (or did not) take Survival Instincts Icon Survival Instincts at level 1. This is because much of Assault Strain's value occurs when your Locusts die, making the lack of Survival Instincts almost negligible. Locust Brood Icon Locust Brood and Locust Nest Icon Locust Nest can be taken with Assault Strain for an increased number of exploding Locusts, which can prove difficult to clear efficiently for enemy melee Heroes.

Bombard Strain Icon Bombard Strain increases the amount that Locust Strain Icon Locust Strain passively pushes lanes. Bombard Strain requires several other Locust talents to be effective, especially Survival Instincts Icon Survival Instincts at level 1. This will maximise the number of Basic Attacks that each Locust is capable of delivering before perishing, while the late game talents Locust Brood Icon Locust Brood and Locust Nest Icon Locust Nest will maximise the number of Locusts you can create.

Spatial Efficiency Icon Spatial Efficiency increases Stab Icon Stab's damage and decreases its cooldown. This talent can put out a lot of damage when paired with Needlespine Icon Needlespine. This is useful when you find yourself primarily using Symbiote to imbue a ranged Basic Attacker with Adrenal Overload Icon Adrenal Overload, or would otherwise get decreased value out of Spike Burst Icon Spike Burst talents.

8. Level 16 Talents

Envenomed Spikes Adrenaline Boost ? Locust Brood ? Volatile Mutation

8.1. Descriptions

Envenomed Spikes Icon Envenomed Spikes causes Spike Burst Icon Spike Burst to Slow all enemies that it hits by 40% for 2 seconds.

Adrenaline Boost Icon Adrenaline Boost increases the movement speed of Symbiote Icon Symbiote's host by 40% for 3.5 seconds when Carapace Icon Carapace is used.

Locust Brood Icon Locust Brood is a short range, activatable talent that spawns a group of Locusts at the targeted location.

Volatile Mutation Icon Volatile Mutation causes Ultimate Evolution Icon Ultimate Evolution and Evolve Monstrosity Icon Evolve Monstrosity to deal AoE damage to all nearby enemies every 3 seconds and upon death.

8.2. Recommended

Envenomed Spikes Icon Envenomed Spikes provides a significant Slow over a large area, especially with Pressurized Glands Icon Pressurized Glands at Level 1. It allows melee Heroes to stick to targets much more easily than they would otherwise. This is especially valuable against mobile enemies.

8.3. Situational

Adrenaline Boost Icon Adrenaline Boost is essentially the opposite of Envenomed Spikes Icon Envenomed Spikes, speeding up a single ally, rather than slowing down multiple enemies. Slowing enemies allows your entire team to reposition, as opposed to giving a single ally increased movement speed. However, if your team composition is structured to build a hyper carry out of a single Hero, Adrenaline Boost can help your team run down kills that would otherwise escape.

Locust Brood Icon Locust Brood can be used in combination with Deep Tunnel Icon Deep Tunnel to push a lane hard very quickly. Locust Brood is a strong option if you are investing talents into Locusts heavily.

8.4. Not Recommended

Volatile Mutation Icon Volatile Mutation deals damage over time in a very short range, making it very ineffective with Ultimate Evolution Icon Ultimate Evolution, where you will often clone a ranged Hero and will only be within range for Volatile Mutation very briefly. Volatile Mutation can help Evolve Monstrosity Icon Evolve Monstrosity waveclear lanes more quickly, but it is usually better overall to have one of the other options at this level.

9. Level 20 Talents

Evolutionary Link ? Evolution Complete Hivemind Locust Nest ?

9.1. Descriptions

Evolutionary Link Icon Evolutionary Link provides the original target of the clone with a shield equal to 25% of their maximum health as long as the clone is alive. The shield refreshes every 5 seconds.

Evolution Complete Icon Evolution Complete allows Evolve Monstrosity Icon Evolve Monstrosity to Deep Tunnel Icon Deep Tunnel to any visible location on the map every 25 seconds.

Hivemind Icon Hivemind creates an additional Symbiote on a nearby allied Hero. This Symbiote will mimic the first one, but its abilities are less powerful. Stab Icon Stab and Spike Burst Icon Spike Burst deal 50% less damage, and Carapace Icon Carapace grants half its normal shield amount.

Locust Nest Icon Locust Nest is a short range, activatable talent that creates a Locust Nest at the targeted location. The Nest spawns Locust Strain Icon Locust Strain every 15 seconds. The Nest can be destroyed by taking damage. Enemy minions and mercenaries will not target it, but enemy Structures and summoned units will. Only one Nest can be active at a time.

9.2. Recommended

Hivemind Icon Hivemind increases Symbiote Icon Symbiote's effectiveness by 50% when considering its abilities directly. However, Hivemind doubles Symbiote's effectiveness when considering talents that increase Symbiote's strength, like Soma Transference Icon Soma Transference and Envenomed Spikes Icon Envenomed Spikes, as these talents work per Hero hit, rather than per ability. This provides you with a noticeable power spike at Level 20. Regardless of what other talents you take, you will almost always get good value out of Hivemind in team fights.

9.3. Situational

Locust Nest Icon Locust Nest requires an investment into other Locust Strain Icon Locust Strain talents in order to be effective; however, it will effectively double the amount of Locusts passively generated by you. This will double the value you will get out of any Locust altering talents you invested in, so take it if you took Survival Instincts Icon Survival Instincts and either Assault Strain Icon Assault Strain or Bombard Strain Icon Bombard Strain.

Evolutionary Link Icon Evolutionary Link makes it harder for the enemy team to kill Ultimate Evolution Icon Ultimate Evolution's target. This can be useful if you are cloning a fragile melee Assassin like Greymane, as it will allow them to behave more aggressively.

9.4. Not Recommended

Evolution Complete Icon Evolution Complete is a niche talent that is very dependent on how good the enemy team is at killing your Monstrosity. If they are able to deal burst damage, it will likely die before Deep Tunnel can be used. Additionally, there is not always a good spot to Deep Tunnel to, and you will often be forced to Deep Tunnel the Monstrosity back to your base because other lanes are pushed in. We currently advise you to take one of the other options.

10. ChangeLog

  • 12 Jul. 2016: Updates following Guldan patch.
    • Regenerative Microbes total amount healed increased by 24, and duration reduced from 8 seconds to 4 seconds.
    • Ballistospores bonus duration increased from 20% to 25%.
    • Sustained Carapace no longer increases shield duration, and instead increases shield amount by 40%.
    • Networked Carapace now applies untalented Carapace, and applies shields to nearby Heroes as well as Minions and Mercenaries.
    • Vile Nest's slow duration decreased from 3 seconds to 2.5 seconds.
    • Assault Strain explosion on death damage increased from 68 to 102.
    • Spacial Efficiency now additionally lowers the cooldown of Stab from 3 seconds to 2.5 seconds.
    • Adrenaline Boost bonus Movement Speed duration increased from 3 seconds to 3.5 seconds.
    • Volatile Mutation area damage increased from 114 to 137 per pulse.
    • Evolution Complete's Deep Tunnel cooldown reduced from 30 seconds to 25 seconds.
    • Evolutionary Link's shield increased from 20% to 25% of the target's max Health.
    • Updated Talent builds.
    • Updated text on all Talent choice explanations.
    • Updated Talent Tree.
  • 17 Mar. 2016: Updates following March 9th, 2016 patch.
    • Vile Nest Slow amount decreased from 50% to 40% and duration reduced from 4 seconds to 3 seconds.
  • 07 Sep. 2015: Updates following Lt. Morales patch.
    • Pressing R with a Monstrosity active will now automatically cast Symbiote on the Monstrosity and move your camera to its position.
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