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Jaina Strategy, Tips, and Tricks

Last updated on Apr 04, 2016 at 08:00 by Oxygen 21 comments

Table of Contents

Jaina Image

General Information

On this page, you will learn how to optimally play Jaina in a competitive environment in Heroes of the Storm. Everything you need to know is explained, from general gameplay to specific tips and tricks.

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

About the Author

Oxygen is a veteran of the MOBA genre, which he has been playing for nearly 15 years. He has coached some of Heroes of the Storm's most prominent North American players and teams alike, including Team Liquid. As a Diamond Flex player, he enjoys playing all Heroes and roles.

1. General Jaina Strategy

Jaina is a fairly strong early game Hero, with her only real weakness being her Mana dependency. Jaina is a solid solo laner, but Blizzard Icon Blizzard and Cone of Cold Icon Cone of Cold will not become effective at clearing minions until around Level 4. For this reason, and because Jaina is extremely vulnerable to ganks, it is generally best to lane with one or two allies for the first few levels. When laning, only save your abilities for enemy Heroes if you can kill or deal significant damage to them (with or without the assistance of your allies). Otherwise, use Blizzard and Cone of Cold on all 7 minions in each wave. Once you are Level 7, Blizzard alone will kill nearly the entire wave, making Cone of Cold unneeded.

Since Jaina is such a strong and flexible damage-dealing Hero, teams are very rarely centred around her, and she instead acts as a filler for the damage role. Unlike Illidan, E.T.C., or Kerrigan who have multiple roles, like applying crowd control, dealing damage, tanking, or saving allies, Jaina's only role is to kill the enemy Heroes. Every time a fight breaks out, you should be looking for an opportunity to land all of your abilities on multiple enemy Heroes, to maximise your damage and your chance of killing a Hero. If a map objective is about to be fought over, look for choke points that the enemy Heroes might funnel through, or hide in a bush so that you can easily flank their backline when their frontline engages your team.

2. When Not Team Fighting

The most important and difficult aspect of Heroes of the Storm is performance in team fights, since this is often where games are decided. That said, team fights usually take up a relatively short amount of time, with the rest of the game being spent performing other tasks. In this section, we will walk you through what you should be doing outside of team fights as Jaina.

In order of priority, you should:

  1. take map objectives;
  2. hold or clear a lane that no one else on your team is in;
  3. take Mercenary Camps (with the help of your team) on your side of the map;
  4. push whatever lane your allies are already pushing the hardest.

Map objectives almost always have the largest impact on the game. If you ignore these, then not only do you miss out on objectives that the enemy takes, but the enemy team also benefits from these objectives. On some maps, team fighting is synonymous with taking objectives, like on Sky Temple or Dragon Shire, but Garden of Terror, for example, does not always promote fights between both teams. The Boss Mercenary Camp on some maps constitutes a map objective. Your goal outside of team fights is to gain as much of an advantage over your enemy as possible, and in Heroes of the Storm, this means soaking XP from minions. Unless there is a team fight, leaving a lane without anyone to soak the XP should never be done, especially if it is just to take a Mercenary Camp.

Once all of your lanes are being soaked, take Mercenary Camps. They provide a small amount of XP and significant lane pressure. Taking the Mercenary Camps on the enemy's side of the map is risky, and it should only be done if you can be sure they will not or cannot contest. Note that Jaina cannot solo any Mercenary Camps without taking a significant amount of damage.

If you have already taken all that the map has to offer, it is likely that most, if not all of the lanes are pushing in the direction of your enemy. This pressure should be capitalised on. Push a lane that is already weak to destroy the enemy's base. Only use your abilities on structures if you are certain that you will not be fighting while your abilities are on cooldown.

3. When Team Fighting

Jaina is an absolute powerhouse of damage at the cost of no mobility, and the enemy team is completely aware of this. You will almost always be targeted first, which makes being out of position even more dangerous for Jaina than other Heroes, and the enemy team will use everything they have on you if they are given even the slightest chance. This makes flanking the enemy team difficult, and sometimes impossible if they have Zagara's Creep Tumor Icon Creep Tumor or Tassadar's Oracle Icon Oracle. You always want to flank if you are able to do so undetected, but do not force it if you do not think it will work or the enemy team has vision of you. In these situations, all flanking will do is split your team up, allowing them to be collapsed on. Instead, simply group with your team and stay behind your frontline. Jaina's massive burst damage will allow you to simply kill any enemy frontline Hero (with the assistance of your team). This is usually a preferred strategy when facing weak melee Heroes, like Illidan, Thrall, Kerrigan, or even off-tanks, like Anub'arak or Tyrael.

If you are able to successfully flank the enemy team, identify a vulnerable target, such as Zagara, Raynor, Malfurion, or Tychus, and use your combo on them and then immediately retreat, as all of their focus will shift to you. Although flanking the enemy like this usually occurs when the enemy team is fighting yours, sometimes you can catch vulnerable targets unaware, and initiate the fight for your team. In either situation, your target(s) will be dead or forced to retreat, while you are still able to continue fighting.

Jaina should be played as a true assassin, lurking for targets while out-of-sight, and then using all of her abilities in an instant on multiple targets at the perfect opportunity. You want to win fights before they even occur.

3.1. Ability Usage

In contrast to other Heroes, Jaina has a specific order that her abilities should be used in to maximise her damage. This is referred to as her "full combo"; it uses all of her abilities, including Summon Water Elemental Icon Summon Water Elemental.

Jaina's combo:

  1. Summon Water Elemental Icon Summon Water Elemental
  2. Basic Attack
  3. Icy Veins Icon Icy Veins
  4. Blizzard Icon Blizzard
  5. Cone of Cold Icon Cone of Cold
  6. Frostbolt Icon Frostbolt

All 5 steps should occur almost instantaneously, but it will take some practice before you are able to perform it perfectly. Jaina's Basic Attacks may not hit as hard as hard as another Hero, like Falstad, but they still do a notable amount and are always worth using. Although Blizzard is the first ability used, the first wave of Blizzard should fall after every other step has been completed. Since Summon Water Elemental does the least amount of damage of any of your abilities, it should damage your target first, applying Chill so that the rest of your abilities benefit from Frostbite Icon Frostbite. It also guarantees that Numbing Blast Icon Numbing Blast will apply a root, which in turns guarantees that both waves of Blizzard will hit.

Once you have used your combo, use your abilities as they become available for prolonged team fights. Always be aware of what your Summon Water Elemental Icon Summon Water Elemental is attacking, as you should both be focusing the same target. Not only do your Water Elemental's Basic Attacks a deal significant amount of damage, but they also apply Chill, slowing your enemies and guaranteeing that your abilities will deal amplified damage via Frostbite.

4. Summary of Tips and Tricks

  • Always chain the use of your abilities together to take advantage of Frostbite Icon Frostbite's bonus damage.
  • Jaina should be played as an assassin, using her full combo on vulnerable targets.
  • Blizzard Icon Blizzard and Cone of Cold Icon Cone of Cold can be used to fully clear a minion wave at Level 4. Blizzard will fully clear a minion wave at Level 7.
  • Always try to flank enemies, rather than fighting them head-on.
  • Jaina completely lacks mobility and defensive abilities (excluding Improved Ice Block Icon Improved Ice Block), magnifying the importance of proper positioning.
  • Always be aware of what your Summon Water Elemental Icon Summon Water Elemental minion is attacking, correcting it when necessary.
  • Try to always use Cone of Cold Icon Cone of Cold on Chilled targets, since it is your highest damage spell. This becomes even more relevant at Level 16 when you get access to Numbing Blast Icon Numbing Blast.
  • If you know a team fight will occur soon, be sure that you have enough Mana to last the duration of the fight, as you are useless without Mana.
  • Although Jaina is a solid solo laner, you should try to lane with allied Heroes.

5. ChangeLog

  • 04 Apr. 2016: Added Icy Veins to Jaina's combo.
  • 23 Aug. 2015: Updates following Kharazim patch.
    • Chnaged the order of Jaina's combo since Summon Water Elemental no longer Chills on impact
  • 02 Jul. 2015: Updates following the Butcher patch.
    • Conjurer's Pursuit is no longer a Recommended talent. Mention of it has been removed.
    • Envenom is no longer a Recommended talent. Mention of it has been removed.
    • Sprint has been removed.
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