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The Butcher Abilities

Last updated on Apr 03, 2016 at 20:05 by Srey 9 comments

Table of Contents

The Butcher Image

General Information

Below, we give you a brief overview of the abilities that The Butcher has access to. You should read these ability descriptions before reading further, because the other pages of the guide assume that you have a basic knowledge of The Butcher's abilities.

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

About the Author

Srey is Rank 1 in Hero League and a top 10 player on Hotslogs. He played for Happy Faerie Dragons, formerly the top amateur team on the North American server. With the team having now disbanded, he is bringing together a new team, which he hopes will compete at an even higher level. You can watch his stream to see how he plays The Butcher (and other heroes).

1. Hamstring

The Butcher Hamstring
Hamstring (Q) Diablo The Butcher
  • Mana: 40
  • Cooldown: 4 seconds

Deal 242 (115 + 4% per level) damage and slow enemies by 50% fading over 2 seconds. Your next Basic Attack will strike immediately.

Hamstring Icon Hamstring hits enemies in a line in the targeted direction, damaging and Slowing them by 50%, decaying over 2 seconds. Your next Basic Attack hits immediately.

Hamstring is The Butcher's primary ability and main source of waveclear. The Slow that it applies is your main way of sticking to targets and its short cooldown encourages you to use it as often as possible. Ideally, you should use Hamstring immediately after a Basic Attack, since it works as an attack reset. Doing so will maximise your damage. However, this can be difficult to implement in practice, and you will usually be better off simply ignoring that aspect of Hamstring.

2. TheButcher's Brand

The Butcher Butcher's Brand
Butcher's Brand (W) Diablo The Butcher
  • Mana: 65
  • Cooldown: 14 seconds

Deal 82 (39 + 4% per level) damage to an enemy and cause your Basic Attacks against them to heal you for 75% of the damage done. Healing is doubled versus Heroes. Lasts 4 seconds. Your Basic Attacks against a branded Hero increase the duration by 0.5 seconds.

Butcher's Brand Icon Butcher's Brand brands an enemy, damaging them and causing Basic Attacks used against them to heal you for 75% of the damage done. The effect is increased to 150% versus enemy Heroes. The brand lasts for 5 seconds.

Using Butcher's Brand properly is extremely important. Improper use will usually lead to you dying and your team losing the fight. This is because Butcher's Brand is The Butcher's only source of survivability; he has no other source of healing and no damage reduction or mobility. It should never be used to deal damage. It is crucial that you mark the correct target at the correct time. This target should always be a Hero, except when you are recovering health after a fight or in lane, preferably one with low mobility at a time when you will not be crowd controlled. For example, if you use Butcher's Brand on Muradin, he can Slow your attack speed with Reverberation Icon Reverberation, Stun you with Storm Bolt Icon Storm Bolt, and simply jump away with Dwarf Toss Icon Dwarf Toss, all of which are more than enough to keep distance from you while they are affected by Butcher's Brand. However, if you mark a Hero like Azmodan, who has no way of disengaging from you, you will be able to freely benefit from Butcher's Brand.

3. Ruthless Onslaught

The Butcher Ruthless Onslaught
Ruthless Onslaught (E) Diablo The Butcher
  • Mana: 55
  • Cooldown: 15 seconds

Charge at an enemy, becoming Unstoppable and gaining Movement Speed. If you reach the target, they are stunned for 1 second and take 261 (124 + 4% per level) damage.

Ruthless Onslaught Icon Ruthless Onslaught causes you to charge the targeted enemy, becoming Unstoppable and gaining increased movement speed. If you reach your target, they are damaged and Stunned for 1 second. If a path becomes blocked or your target moves behind a wall while you are charging, you will automatically charge down the shortest alternate route. Ruthless Onslaught can be cancelled while charging, by reactivating the ability.

Ruthless Onslaught is a powerful ability that mainly functions as an engagement tool. It can be used to quickly cross large distances, Stunning your target for 1-second and damaging them upon contact. Since you are Unstoppable while charging and immune to crowd control, there is very little that enemies can do to prevent you from making contact with them. However, you are still susceptible to damage while charging and will likely be the primary focus of the enemy team the moment you are within range, so it is extremely important that you have the support of your allies when charging. Be wary of targeting Heroes with blinks and dashes, as they can quickly move to a different position, causing you to charge down a potentially dangerous path. Always be ready to cancel Ruthless Onslaught mid-charge should circumstances change to favour the enemy.

Note that Ruthless Onslaught causes you to charge along the shortest route to your target, and the shortest may not necessarily be the safest. Know the route that you will take before you charge to avoid inadvertently running through the enemy base. Ruthless Onslaught can also be used to escape pursuing enemies by targeting minions and mercenaries. Note that some abilities, like Devouring Maw Icon Devouring Maw and Void Prison Icon Void Prison, are able to stop or delay you from charging.

4. Lamb to the Slaughter

The Butcher Lamb to the Slaughter
Lamb to the Slaughter (R) Diablo The Butcher
  • Mana: 75
  • Cooldown: 90 seconds

Throw a hitching post that attaches to the nearest enemy Hero after a 1 second delay. This deals 375 (178 + 4% per level) damage and causes the enemy to be chained to the post and Silenced for 3 seconds.

Lamb to the Slaughter Icon Lamb to the Slaughter throws a hitching post at the targeted location. After a 1 second delay, it chains the closest enemy Hero, damaging and Silencing them and forcing them to stay within a small radius around the post for 3 seconds. Only Cleanse Icon Cleanse and abilities that make a Hero immune to damage will break the chain.

Lamb to the Slaughter can be an excellent Heroic. Chaining a vulnerable enemy Hero, such as an Assassin, can completely prevent them from fleeing, giving your team an easy kill. It is important to note that Lamb to the Slaughter prevents chained Heroes from escaping with dashes, blinks, gap-closers, and all other types of mobility spells since they are Silenced.

Except in very specific circumstances, you will always want to avoid using Lamb to the Slaughter on a Tank, since the strength of this ability is allowing easier access to priority enemy Heroes. It can also be used to chain pursuing enemies, preventing them from chasing you. Slaughterhouse Icon Slaughterhouse, the Level 20 upgrade for Lamb to the Slaughter, is very, very good, drastically increasing Lamb to the Slaughter's effectiveness. It should almost always be chosen at Level 20.

Lamb to the Slaughter's strength is very dependent on the enemies' team composition and whether or not they have an answer to Lamb to the Slaughter. Cleanse Icon Cleanse is an especially good counter, since it is targeted, instant, has a low cooldown, and every dedicated healer (aside from Li Li) has access to it. However, Cleanse alone is not an effective enough counter since this would mean that Cleanse is being used specifically for you, allowing your allies to use their crowd control without fear of it being removed. You want to avoid choosing Lamb to the Slaughter when the enemy team has plenty of survivability, such as multiple Tanks and supports, and your team has insufficient burst damage to follow up.

Enemy players have access to a wide variety of counters to Lamb to the Slaughter. It is important that you identify these counters prior to choosing Lamb to the Slaughter, as to not take it and have it be ineffective. The following is a list of notable abilities and talents that you should be aware of.

5. Furnace Blast

The Butcher Furnace Blast
Furnace Blast (R) Diablo The Butcher
  • Mana: 75
  • Cooldown: 60 seconds

After a 3 second delay, fire explodes around you dealing 1096 (520 + 4% per level) damage to enemies. Can be cast while using Ruthless Onslaught.

Furnace Blast Icon Furnace Blast causes flames to erupt around you after 3 seconds, dealing massive damage to all nearby enemies. Furnace Blast can be cast while using Ruthless Onslaught Icon Ruthless Onslaught.

Furnace Blast allows you to kill Heroes, like Assassins and Specialists, from full health nearly instantly, making it one of the hardest hitting abilities in the game. It does the same damage as Nova's Precision Strike Icon Precision Strike but less damage than a late game Flamestrike Icon Flamestrike from Kael'thas (when factoring in related talents). When choosing Furnace Blast, a lot of your power is invested in the ability, making it very important to avoid large team fights (if possible) when it is unavailable.

Furnace Blast should always be used in combination with other abilities to best ensure that it hits your targets, especially ones that apply crowd control. A 3-second delay is quite long, so you will generally want to activate Furnace Blast before fighting and then use Ruthless Onslaught to close the distance and stun your target. Furnace Blast should be timed to explode just as you get within range of your target, giving enemies the least amount of time possible to respond. Activating Furnace Blast in the midst of a fight or when your enemies are still at a distance when Ruthless Onslaught is unavailable and your target is not being crowd controlled by your allies will almost always end poorly. Once you have Bolt of the Storm Icon Bolt of the Storm at Level 20, you can activate Furnace Blast, wait until just before it explodes, and then bolt directly on top of your targets.

Enemy players have access to a wide variety of counters to Furnace Blast. It is important that you identify these counters prior to using Furnace Blast, as to maximise its chance of success. The following is a list of notable abilities and talents that you should be aware of.

6. Fresh Meat (Trait)

The Butcher Fresh Meat
Fresh Meat Diablo The Butcher
  • Trait

Quest: Nearby Minions drop 1 Fresh Meat and Heroes drop 5 Fresh Meat when they die. You can pick up Fresh Meat to gain 1 Attack Damage per Meat. Can hold up to 125 Meat. You drop up to 10 Fresh Meat upon dying. Reward: After acquiring 125 pieces of Fresh Meat, gain an additional 100 Attack Damage and 25% increased Attack Speed. You also no longer lose Fresh Meat on death.

Fresh Meat Icon Fresh Meat causes enemies to drop Fresh Meat upon death that is automatically picked up by moving your Hero over it. Each piece of Fresh Meat increases your Basic Attack damage by 1%, stacking up to 25% and lasting indefinitely. However, all Fresh Meat stacks are lost when you die. Enemy minions and mercenaries drop 1 Fresh Meat, enemy Heroes drop 3 Fresh Meat. The Lost Vikings and Murky still drop 3 Fresh Meat on death, even though they are only worth one quarter of a kill, experience-wise.

Fresh Meat is a mechanic unique to The Butcher. Having 25 stacks of Fresh Meat (or 35 with Abattoir Icon Abattoir) will significantly increase your Basic Attack damage, so it is extremely important that you acquire max stacks as fast as possible, especially after dying. Minions and mercenaries are the best (and safest) sources of Fresh Meat, providing 7 pieces per wave. This means that there are always, at a minimum, 21 pieces of Fresh Meat on the map that can be harvested just from minions, so collection of Fresh Meat really should not be an issue, as long as you are not dying constantly. Heroes provide 3 Fresh Meat but they should never be targeted just for Fresh Meat, as it is simply being a bonus.

It is highly recommended that you choose Abattoir at Level 7. This talent will not only increase your Fresh Meat capacity by 10, but also drastically reduce the amount of meat that is lost on death, making it much easier to recover. It also synergises well with Blood Frenzy Icon Blood Frenzy at Level 16. However, Blood Frenzy makes it even more important to always have as many pieces of Fresh Meat as possible.

7. ChangeLog

  • 27 Apr. 2016: Patch 17.4 update.
    • Ruthless Onslaught cooldown reduced from 20 to 15 seconds.
    • Ruthless Onslaught Mana cost reduced from 75 to 55.
    • Furnace Blast cooldown reduced from 90 to 80 seconds.
    • Furnace Blast damage increased from 456(+4% per level) to 500(+4% per level).
  • 04 Apr. 2016: Targets afected by Lamb to the Slaughter are now Silenced for the ability's duration.
    • Lamb to the Slaughter duration reduced from 4 seconds to 3 seconds.
    • Lamb to the Slaughter cooldown increased from 60 seconds to 90 seconds.
    • Lamb to the Slaughter’s chain and Silence effects will now be removed if the target becomes Invulnerable or Unstoppable.
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