Warning It appears that you may be blocking the ads, and we are fine with it (read more here). That said, it would really be awesome if you decided to whitelist our website or make a donation :) You can also send us Bitcoins (1DEkropiHPWBmfJxogFaXQscfzhmdpTti4)!

Zagara Talents

Last updated on Aug 10, 2016 at 07:43 by Micekrispies 12 comments

Table of Contents

Zagara Image

General Information

On this page, we present the viable talent choices for playing Zagara 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 Zagara guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.

About the Author

Micekrispies is a Grand Master Hero League player who has a passion for the MOBA scene and its community. Having over 6 years of experience in the upper divisions of League of Legends, Micekrispies saw Heroes of the Storm as an exciting new endeavor. His priority is to share his knowledge of the MOBA genre with any and all who desire to learn more. Feel free to drop off a comment in the comments section or check out him out on Twitch where he will gladly answer any of your questions.

1. Talent Build

Level Choices
1 Volatile Acid Corpse Feeders Infest
4 Envenomed Spines Medusa Blades Serrated Spines ?
7 Baneling Massacre Viscous Acid Bile Drop ?
10 Devouring Maw Nydus Network
13 Hydralisk Transfusion Protective Coating ? Spell Shield ?
16 Brood Expansion Corrosive Saliva Mutalisk
20 Tyrant Maw Endless Creep Fury of the Storm

2. Common Talent Paths

High Damage Team Fighting Build: Focuses on laning team fighting and Hero damage

Split Pushing Creep Build: Allows you to cover the entire map in Creep to split-push and give vision of enemies

3. Choosing your build

Zagara has two primary build paths that should be decided on once the player has seen the compositions of each team and the Battleground that she will be placed into. Larger maps with multiple objective locations (Cursed Hollow, Sky Temple, Garden of Terror, Infernal Shrines) tend to favor a split pushing build where Zagara can take advantage of distracting moments of opportunity for the enemy team. Maps that are smaller such as Tomb of the Spider Queen and Towers of Doom make it much more difficult for Zagara to sneak away to push lanes and destroy defenses, although it isn't impossible. On these Battlegrounds some players might consider going for a build that revolves around team fighting and applying massive amounts of sustained damage to enemy Heroes. Not to mention, a well placed Devouring Maw Icon Devouring Maw may swing a losing teamfight in the favor of Zagara and her allies. Keep in mind that it will be much more difficult to effectively play a split-pushing build if they enemy team contains a high burst damage assassin Hero such as Zeratul or Nova. Heroes like these will frustratingly spend the much of the match hunting Zagara in an attempt to her down.

4. Level 1 Talents

Volatile Acid Corpse Feeders Infest

4.1. Descriptions

Volatile Acid Icon Volatile Acid causes Banelings to travel 50% further before they explode as well as increases their damage to Minions, Mercenaries, and Structures by 50%.

Corpse Feeders Icon Corpse Feeders reduces the cooldown of Infested Drop Icon Infested Drop by 3 seconds and the Roachlings will take 40% less damage from non-Heroic sources.

Infest Icon Infest causes nearby Ranged Minions to deal an additional 100% damage, plus an additional 1% per 1000 Siege damage Zagara has dealt. Can be toggled on or off.

4.2. Recommended

Baneling Barrage Icon Baneling Barrage is arguably Zagara's strongest pushing ability, dealing very large amounts of AoE damage to all enemies struck. Volatile Acid Icon Volatile Acid providing a 50% increase in range to an already incredibly long ranged Basic Ability further accentuates Zagara's power to safely poke down defenses as well as interrupt targets channeling objectives such as Shrines on Towers or Doom or Curses on Cursed Hollow. The damage increase is invaluable to Zagara players when attempting to siege fortifications while overextended. This allows them to have a much greater destructive impact on enemy structures before having to flee enemies looking for an easy pick.

Corpse Feeders Icon Corpse Feeders, although not quite as strong in terms of raw immediate damage output as Volatile Acid Icon Volatile Acid, is another great option for sieges. Not only will the reduced cooldown increase the overall damage per second output from the Zerg Drop Pod's impact, but it will significantly increase Roachling uptime. In lanes the 40% damage reduction to Roachlings will greatly benefit their ability to survive. These Roachlings also have a multitude of other benefits. They can provide decent damage to Heroes and minions alike, push out lanes, soak structure shots, and block certain Basic Abilities such as Kael'thas's Gravity Lapse Icon Gravity Lapse or Stitches's Hook Icon Hook. When focus is being placed on team fighting and Hero damage, Corpse Feeders is the go-to selection as it has several PvP benefits compared to that of Volatile Acid which has none.

4.3. Not Recommended

Infest Icon Infest is an overall relatively weak talent option. The damage output from allied Ranged minions under Infest's influence is quite underwhelming, especially at first when Zagara's siege damage values are still low. The main issue with Infest is that it “scales” into the late game, a time when Zagara will only want to be spending seconds in each lane, casting her Basic Abilities to push a lane and then moving on. Although Zagara derives the most value from Infest by staying with a pushing allied minion wave, this could result in often overstaying and being caught behind enemy lines.

5. Level 4 Talents

Envenomed Spines Medusa Blades Serrated Spines ?

5.1. Descriptions

Envenomed Spines Icon Envenomed Spines can be activated to have Zagara's next Basic Attack apply a large amount of damage over the next 5 seconds. Cooldown of 30 seconds.

Medusa Blades Icon Medusa Blades causes Basic Attacks to deal 33% damage to three nearby targets.

Serrated Spines Icon Serrated Spines causes each Basic Attack against a Hero to increase Zagara's Attack Damage by .3.

5.2. Recommended

Envenomed Spines Icon Envenomed Spines is a great choice as it provides Zagara with another relatively high source of on-demand damage. Although a cooldown of 30 seconds keeps the power of Envenomed Spines in check, it should not prevent players from using this ability as often as possible. Versatility is gained by the fact it is considered a Basic Attack modifier, which allows it to be applied not only to Heroes but also minions, Mercenaries, Bosses, and Structures. Keep in mind that a downfall to this feature is Envenomed Spines can be wasted on attacking targets while under the effect of a blind. Be on the lookout for when Zagara may have been struck with Li Li's Blinding Wind Icon Blinding Wind and Johanna's Shield Glare Icon Shield Glare. Illidan's Evasion Icon Evasion will also negate the effects of Envenomed Spines.

5.3. Situational

Serrated Spines Icon Serrated Spines is a talent that scales according to the number of Basic Attacks applied to enemy Heroes by Zagara. This means there are two primary factors effecting how beneficial this talent will be which are the duration of the match, and the time spent of that match directly trading with enemy Heroes. When running a split-push build this talent should be avoided, since there will (hopefully) be little interaction with other Heroes; at least not enough to make the talent more cost effective than Envenomed Spines Icon Envenomed Spines. If the primary focus of the match will be direct interaction with the enemy team (teamfights or trading over objectives), then this talent should scale somewhat nicely. To give an idea of how much damage output will increase based off of this talent, it will require ~120 Basic Attacks against Heroes to achieve  the same damage bonus as Seasoned Marksman Icon Seasoned Marksman.

5.4. Not Recommended

Medusa Blades Icon Medusa Blades is a talent that exists for the purpose of pushing minion waves more quickly. Unfortunately this talent is a relatively weak choice as Zagara will most often be using Baneling Barrage Icon Baneling Barrage and Infested Drop Icon Infested Drop to quickly clear waves of minions. The 33% damage also feels relatively weak as Zagara’s Basic Attack damage is not that impressive to begin with.

6. Level 7 Talents

Baneling Massacre Viscous Acid Bile Drop ?

6.1. Descriptions

Baneling Massacre Icon Baneling Massacre increases the amount of charges Zagara can hold with Baneling Barrage Icon Baneling Barrage from 4 to 6.

Viscous Acid Icon Viscous Acid causes Banelings to slow enemies by 20% for 1.5 seconds.

Bile Drop Icon Bile Drop increases the damage of Infested Drop Icon Infested Drop by 50%. Each time a Hero is hit by the impact damage of Infested Drop, the damage is increased by another 5%. Once reaching 150% bonus damage, the damage radius of Infested Drop increases by 20%.

6.2. Recommended

Baneling Massacre Icon Baneling Massacre is a talent that directly effects Zagara's initial burst, as it allows her to immediately cast two additional charges of Baneling Barrage. The initial burst of two additional Banelings is most effective when used in a split-pushing manner. In order to split push effectively, Heroes need to be able to show up in a lane, do large amounts of PvE damage to minions and structures, and get out quickly before being caught over-extended in enemy territory. Additional burst damage to Zagara's kit allows her to maximize the pressure she can apply to a lane before having to flee approaching enemy Heroes. Baneling Massacre is phenomenal when paired with Volatile Acid Icon Volatile Acid. Unfortunately Baneling Massacre is not very useful in skirmishes and teamfights beyond its immediate burst damage. This is because it will take 18 seconds of not using Baneling Barrage after having exhausted all 6 charges to recover the additional charges completely. More often than not this additional burst damage in teamfights will go to waste because supports will attempt to use damage mitigating abilities on Heroes who are being targeted by focus fire.

Viscous Acid Icon Viscous Acid is a phenomenal talent for skirmishes and teamfights with many beneficial applications. The 20% slow applied to each Baneling can be used to kite away aggressive enemies, peel for teammates, and catch fleeing Heroes. The 1.5 second duration to the slow for each Baneling means Zagara will be able to apply the slow for a full 6 seconds when the ability is cast accordingly. Viscous Acid is best served in teamfight oriented builds, however it may be chosen by those wanting the safety of an additional escape mechanic when split-pushing while over-extended.

Bile Drop Icon Bile Drop is a great option for players who would rather talent in favor of increased Hero damage over the utility of Viscous Acid. This is especially recommended when the enemy team is composed of Heroes that lack any strong initiation which would require additional peel beyond what Zagara's allies may already provide. The increased damage and damage radius of Bile Drop is also a wise choice for poke compositions that spend much of the match sieging and zoning their opponents. With decent mechanics most players should be able to complete the quest portion of Bile Drop relatively fast, as it only requires striking enemies with Infested Drop 10 times. It is best to try and strike enemies who are, or will very soon be, under the effects of crowd-control, such as Xul's Bone Prison Icon Bone Prison. Doing this should make the quest portion of Bile Drop a breeze and will maximize the effectiveness of the increased damage radius.

7. Level 10 Talents

Devouring Maw Nydus Network

7.1. Descriptions

Devouring Maw Icon Devouring Maw summons a Devouring Maw that devours enemies in a targeted area for 4 seconds. Devoured enemies cannot fight and take moderate damage over second. This ability is usable on Unstoppable enemies.

Nydus Network Icon Nydus Network passively spreads creep 15% further and while on creep each Basic Attacks lowers all of Zagara's cooldowns by 0.75 seconds. Zagara is also able to summon a Nydus Worm anywhere on creep Zagara has vision of. After a short delay Zagara may enter a Nydus Worm and travel to any other Nydus Worm on the Battleground by right-clicking near it. When inside of a Nydus Worm, Zagara will regenerate 9.75% of Heath and Mana per second.

7.2. Recommended

Devouring Maw Icon Devouring Maw is arguably one of the most powerful abilities in all of Heroes of the Storm. A well placed Devouring Maw will not only apply a moderate amount of damage to all enemies trapped within, but will effectively remove them from play for a full 4 second duration. This ability is completely uncounterable, as it is even able to take in Heroes considered to be unstoppable at the time of its use. In my personal experience, countless matches have been won or lost depending on the use of Devouring Maw in a late-game teamfight. A downside to Devouring Maw is its delayed cast time, which may leave newer Zagara players feeling as though the ability is somewhat unresponsive. There is a definitive learning curve to utilizing Devouring Maw effectively. Players need to be able to foreshadow their targets movement to give themselves the greatest opportunity to land a successful Maw. Devouring Maw is also well known for allowing Zagara's allies ample time to follow-up on trapped enemies. Keep in mind that Devouring Maw should be very rarely used as initaition, and should be kept for more opportune times, such as removing a support from the teamfight or peeling away an overly aggressive frontline. The Maw created by Devouring Maw is considered to be impassable terrain, similar to that of a wall or structure, so keep in mind it may potentially block both friend and foe when trying to reach a specific location.

Nydus Network Icon Nydus Network is the cornerstone to Zagara's split-push build. Not only does this talent provide a sizable increase in creep coverage, but the cooldown reduction built in to her Basic Attacks is invaluable when having to constantly spam Basic Abilities to tear down the enemy defenses. The cooldown reduction will not only greatly impact Zagara's sustained damage output through Baneling Barrage Icon Baneling Barrage, but will also dramatically increases the up time of Roachlings and Hydralisks spawned from Infested Drop Icon Infested Drop and Hunter Killer Icon Hunter Killer. The ability Zagara has to immediately travel anywhere on the map that creep has previously been laid is invaluable, and will constantly force enemies to have to leave other important objectives to alleviate the pressure it will create. Always remember to place a worm directly near the allied base to ensure quick return to the field should Zagara be slain at any point. The sustain provided when entering into a Nydus Worm will also prevent Zagara from ever having to pull back her pressure due to a lack of Health or Mana. It is of extreme importance for Zagara players to be always keeping one eye on the Mini-map to note when enemy Heroes are missing from action, as they will be most likely headed in their direction. Being killed when split-pushing, especially in the later stages of the match, can prove detrimental to Zagara's team and can very easily result in a loss. Do not shy away from playing aggressively with Nydus Network but also keep in mind the costs of becoming greedy and overstaying your welcome. With that in mind always try to keep Nydus Worms out of sight, away from regular foot traffic. Placement of Worms should preferably be in nooks of walls or in the outskirts of the map, hidden by bushes or steam vents. This will prevent enemy Heroes from accidentally stumbling upon and immediately destroying them. The short channel to enter a Worm can be interrupted by any direct damage Zagara takes, so when being directly pursued do not always try to escape via a Nydus Worm as a Hero can very easily prevent escape. Worms are also units containing the element of collision, so players may attempt to block off an enemies paths with an impassable Worm as they are attempting to flee or initiate, especially within narrow choke points.

8. Level 13 Talents

Hydralisk Transfusion Protective Coating ? Spell Shield ?

8.1. Descriptions

Hydralisk Transfusion Icon Hydralisk Transfusion causes Zagara to be healed for 75% of the damage dealt by Hunter Killer Icon Hunter Killers' Basic Attacks.

Protective Coating Icon Protective Coating causes Zagara to take 20% less damage while on creep.

Spell Shield Icon Spell Shield causes Zagara to take 50% less ability damage from an ability as well as 50% of all ability damage for the next 3 seconds. This can only occur once every 30 seconds and can be toggled on and off.

8.2. Recommended

Hydralisk Transfusion Icon Hydralisk Transfusion is a great choice among the three damage mitigating talents available to Zagara at Level 13. Hydralisk's Basic Attacks do quite a bit of damage and 75% of that damage returned to Zagara as Health is a definitely noticeable amount. What is nice about Hydralisk Transfusion is the ability provides Zagara with decent self-sustain for the duration of the match after Level 13. This sustain will help with solo pushing lanes, defeating Mercenary camps, and trading damage with enemy Heroes over contestable objectives, especially if Zagara's support happens to be unavailable at that moment to assist her. Talenting into Mutalisk Icon Mutalisk at Level 16 also can provide Zagara with a massive amount of long term healing, especially if one or more Mutalisks are placed into a friendly minion wave to work their way down lane while Zagara moves on to other sections of the Battleground. It is very important to note that Hyrdalisk Transfusion DOES NOT STACK with the damage amplification of Corrosive Saliva Icon Corrosive Saliva nor the additional attacks or Mutalisk Icon Mutalisk. The healing bonus is only applied to the original basic attacks of these units.

8.3. Situational

Protective Coating Icon Protective Coating is no doubt a phenomenal talent, as a “permanent” 20% damage reduction to all sources is incredibly strong. What keeps this talent in check and ultimately leads it to being categorized as Situational is the dependency on creep for it to be active. This stipulation may sometimes render the talent completely useless, especially when Zagara has been unable to lay down a widespread area of creep among the region of an impending skirmish or teamfight. Skilled opponents may even attempt to quickly destroy all creep surrounding an area of contest before a fight is taken on, leaving Zagara with no means of personal damage mitigation unlike Hydralisk Transfusion Icon Hydralisk Transfusion which is only dependent on the up time of Hydralisks and Spell Shield Icon Spell Shield.

Spell Shield Icon Spell Shield is a good option for players having a hard time surviving initial burst from teams choosing Zagara as their target of focus fire. It may also come in handy when attempting to split-push against enemy heroes with large amounts of single target burst damage, such as Zeratul or Nova. If teamfighting after having talented into Spell Shield, remember to try to anticipate when the enemy team is going to fully commit to attacking Zagara, as to not waste Spell Shield on mere poking and put in on a 30 second cooldown.

9. Level 16 Talents

Brood Expansion Corrosive Saliva Mutalisk

9.1. Descriptions

Brood Expansion Icon Brood Expansion reduces the cooldown of Hunter Killer Icon Hunter Killer by 6 seconds.

Corrosive Saliva Icon Corrosive Saliva causes Hydralisk's Basic Attacks against Heroes to cause an additional damage equal to 2% of their maximum health.

Mutalisk Icon Mutalisk causes Hunter Killer Icon Hunter Killer to now spawn Mutalisks, which have a greatly increased duration and Basic Attacks that bounce to multiple enemies.

9.2. Recommended

Corrosive Saliva Icon Corrosive Saliva deals damage based off of the maximum Health of a Hero, therefore the higher Health a target has, the more effective the talent will be. This talent is great at tearing down intimidating frontlines, especially since those are the Heroes that will most often be in range of Zagara's abilities assuming she is positioned correctly. If a split-push build is desired, try to avoid this talent; the idea of such a strategy is to avoid as much contact with the enemy Heroes as possible which renders Corrosive Saliva effectively useless.

Mutalisk Icon Mutalisk is the talent of choice when split-pushing is the name of the game. Although the additional bounce attacks are nice, especially when the Mutalisk is attacking an enemy minion wave, the main strength of Mutalisk lies in the spawns greatly increased duration. Long after their initial summoning, Mutalisks will continue down lane dealing multi-target damage to any minions or defenses that happen across its path. These little guys can be spawned and left to do their work as Zagara moves on via Nydus Network Icon Nydus Network to pressure another region of the map. This allows Zagara to maintain a constant pressure of multiple lanes, forcing enemy teams apart as they try to save multiple locations from being slowly chipped away throughout the match.

9.3. Not Recommended

Brood Expansion Icon Brood Expansion is not inherently a bad talent option. It is unfortunately outclassed by both Corrosive Saliva Icon Corrosive Saliva and Mutalisk Icon Mutalisk in what each of those other talents brings to the table. When teamfighting, the damage output of Corrosive Saliva is undeniably stronger than that of Brood Expansion, and the cooldown of Hunter Killer Icon Hunter Killer is not an issue when the Mutalisks live for a much longer duration. The amount of utility provided by Brood Expansion just is not enough to justify it as a pick over either other option.

10. Level 20 Talents

Tyrant Maw Endless Creep Fury of the Storm

10.1. Descriptions

Tyrant Maw Icon Tyrant Maw causes Devouring Maw Icon Devouring Maw to deal 50% more damage and reduces its cooldown by 25 seconds every time Zagara gets a takedown.

Endless Creep Icon Endless Creep increases the cast range of Creep Tumor by 2000% and causes creep to last for 600 seconds. Zagara also gains an additional 15% movement speed when on creep.

Every 5 seconds, Fury of the Storm Icon Fury of the Storm causes Zagara's next Basic Attack to deal additional damage to the target and a large amount of additional damage to all nearby enemy Minions and Mercenaries.

10.2. Recommended

Endless Creep Icon Endless Creep is by far the best talent option for Zagara at Level 20 when she has chosen Nydus Network Icon Nydus Network as it includes a slew of performance upgrades to her kit. The first upgrade that comes with Endless Creep is the MASSIVE increase in Creep Tumor Icon Creep Tumor's cast range. Creep Tumor with its upgraded cast range can be used liberally as it will be effectively providing free vision all throughout the entire Battleground. This means that teams containing a Level 20-30 Zagara have no excuse to ever fall victim to a trap when attempting to scout out an uncontested Mercenary camp, Boss, or objective. The increased duration to the lifespan of the creep will also ensure that unless it is being actively hunted, Zagara should have to worry very little about reapplying creep to areas of high contest throughout the map. A 15% additional increase to movement speed combined with the original 15% means that when on creep Zagara will move significantly faster than most other Heoes. Zagara should have no problem kiting and pursuing any enemy Hero as long as there is creep underneath her. Zagara will be able to place a Creep Tumor very far away from her and then immediately travel to that location by placing a Nydus Worm there. This interaction creates a very strong semi-global presence for Zagara, allowing her to travel to any location in a matter of seconds even if creep had not previously been placed there. This is fundamental to Zagara's late-game split-pushing effectiveness. By the time an enemy Hero is able to react to her pressuring of a lane, Zagara should have already joined up with her team at an objective to generate a number advantage, or simple traveled to another lane to further apply map pressure.

Fury of the Storm Icon Fury of the Storm is clearly intended to be used for late game pushing, which Zagara will always be able to benefit from. When it comes down to a choice between Tyrant Maw Icon Tyrant Maw and Fury of the Storm, FotS will always come out ahead. This talent just fits seamlessly into what Zagara is all about. Even when she is built to have a strong teamfight presense, the benfits of Fury of the Storm will not go unnoticed.

10.3. Not Recommended

Tyrant Maw Icon Tyrant Maw is a completely underwhelming talent choice overall. The damage component to Devouring Maw Icon Devouring Maw is by far the least important aspect to the ability, and increasing its damage feels negligible. The cooldown reduction provided by takedowns is also relatively useless. When planned accordingly, Zagara should never have to fight without her Maw available as its cooldown is only 100 seconds, nothing too extreme. Overall, unless Tyrant Maw were to get some very dramatic changes it will always be outclassed by Fury of the Storm Icon Fury of the Storm, as waveclear is invaluable to Zagara especially in the late game.

11. ChangeLog

  • 13 Sep. 2016: Noted slight changes made to Zagara in Alarak patch.
    • Generic Talents
    • Spell Shield (Passive)
    • Added functionality:
    • Spell Shield can now be toggled on or off to allow for better control of which Abilities will be mitigated.
    • Abilities
    • Creep Tumor (Trait)
    • Movement Speed on Creep bonus reduced from 20 to 15%.
    • Talents
    • Level 16
    • Mutalisk (W)
    • Duration reduced from 60 to 45 seconds.
    • Level 20
    • Endless Creep (Passive)
    • Movement Speed reduced from 40 to 30%.
  • 09 Aug. 2016: Minor changes have been made to several of Zagara's Talents.
    • Ranged Minion damage bonus of Infest reduced from 150% to 100%.
    • Bile Drops' increased bonus damage gained from hitting Heroes decreased from 10% to 5%.
    • Nydus Network's Cooldown Reduction from Basic Attacks reduced from 1 second to 0.75 seconds.
  • 27 Jul. 2016: Fixed an error in the guide regarding Zagara's level 20 talent choices. Changes following balance update.
    • Nydus Network's creep radius reduced to 15% from 25%.
    • Infest's initial damage buff to ranged minions reduced to 150% from 200%.
  • 20 Jul. 2016: Full revamp of the page, following Gul'dan's patch changes.
  • 12 Jul. 2016: Created placeholder for Talents page to reflect the large amount of changes made to Zagara during the Gul'dan patch.
  • 17 May 2016: Update following the Chromie patch.
    • Changes to Battle Momentum, now referred to as Swarm Momentum specific to Zagara.
    • Basic Attacks now reduce Basic Ability cooldowns by 0.75 second instead of 0.5 second.
    • No longer reduces Heroic Ability or Trait cooldowns.
  • 04 Apr. 2016: Updates to reflect patch 17.0
    • Updated Nydus Network text to reflect changes.
  • 22 Aug. 2015: Updated talent description for Bolt of the Storm to account for Kharazim's patch. No changes in talent recommendations.
  • 02 Jul. 2015: Updates following the Butcher patch.
    • Envenom now deals damage over 10 seconds, up from 5 seconds. The amount of damage is unchanged.
    • Spell Shield nows lasts for 3 seconds once activated, up from 2 seconds.
    • Infest now only deals increased damage versus Non-Heroic targets.
Force desktop version
Force mobile version