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Zarya Talents

Last updated on Nov 24, 2016 at 08:35 by Kendric 7 comments

Table of Contents

Zarya Image

General Information

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

About the Author

KendricSwissh is a Master League Warrior and Support player in Hero League. He has been playing Heroes of the Storm since the early stages of the Alpha version and has mastered a large number of Heroes. He is also creating Heroes of the Storm related content on YouTube, most notably his series called Epic Plays of the Week, which focuses on video clips submitted by his viewers. He is also a streamer on Twitch where he will gladly answer all of your questions about the game.

1. Talent Build

Level Choices
1 Demolitions Expert Together We Are Strong Feel the Heat ? Maximum Charge
4 I Am the Strongest Give Me Twenty Speed Barrier Defensive Shielding ?
7 Pinpoint Accuracy Explosive Barrier To the Limit ? Hit Me
10 Graviton Surge Expulsion Zone
13 Unstoppable Competitor Spell Barrier Endurance Training Pain is Temporary
16 Plasma Shock Cleansing Shield Gain Train Born in Battle
20 Gravity Kills Clear Out Grenadier Unyielding Defender

2. Common Talent Paths

2.1. Energy Build

The Energy Build provides Zarya with both offensive and defensive capabilities. Maximum Charge Icon Maximum Charge at Level 1 lays the foundation for later Energy-related talents such as Endurance Training Icon Endurance Training at 13 and Born in Battle Icon Born in Battle at 16, as both of them benefit from the higher Energy threshold.

2.2. Grenadier Build

The Grenadier Build relies on strong AoE damage by firing Particle Grenade Icon Particle Grenades in quick succession. Demolitions Expert Icon Demolitions Expert at Level 1 proves to be quite important to achieve that. Pinpoint Accuracy Icon Pinpoint Accuracy at Level 7 and Plasma Shock Icon Plasma Shock at Level 16 are nice follow-up talents to complement this Grenade heavy Build. Depending on the course of the game and your team composition you may want to choose Grenadier Icon Grenadier at Level 20 if your team needs additional AoE damage or Unyielding Defender Icon Unyielding Defender if you need additional protection. It is very important to stress that we do recommend using Quick Cast on Particle Grenade Icon Particle Grenade's Hotkey when using this Build. Doing so makes the ability more responsive and causes less delay, which greatly benefits your overall accuracy.

3. Level 1 Talents

Zarya Demolitions Expert
Demolitions Expert (Level 1) Zarya

Quest: For every 5 enemy Heroes hit by Particle Grenade, its recharge rate lowers by 0.5 seconds, up to 4 seconds.

Reward: Once Particle Grenade has hit 40 enemy Heroes, its radius is increased by 15%.

Zarya Together We Are Strong
Together We Are Strong (Level 1) Zarya

Every 19 (9 + 4% per level) damage done by allies while under Shield Ally contributes 1 Energy, up to 30 Energy per shield.

Zarya Feel the Heat ?
Feel the Heat (Level 1) Zarya

Zarya's Basic Attack deals -8.50% additional damage to enemies in melee range.

Zarya Maximum Charge
Maximum Charge (Level 1) Zarya

Regen Globes now instantly grant 20 Energy.

Quest: Spend 150 seconds at or above 50 Energy.

Reward: Gain an additional 25 maximum Energy.

3.1. Discussion

Maximum Charge Icon Maximum Charge offers a solid fundament for most games by increasing your overall Energy threshold. The boons of talents like Endurance Training Icon Endurance Training at Level 13 and Born in Battle Icon Born in Battle at Level 16 will be triggered more easily if your maximum level of Energy is higher.

Demolitions Expert Icon Demolitions Expert should only be used if you plan on using other Particle Grenade Icon Particle Grenade related talents later on. We heavily recommend turning Quick Cast on in the Hotkey settings when using Particle Grenade. Doing so will drastically increase its efficiency.

Feel the Heat Icon Feel the Heat is a rather underwhelming talent, since Zarya is usually attacking from a medium distance and very rarely from point-blank melee range. This talent is, however, very easy to use, which makes it a somewhat appealing alternative to new Zarya players.

Together We Are Strong Icon Together We Are Strong does not charge your Energy quickly enough in most situations, since Shield Ally Icon Shield Ally has a rather long cooldown. Furthermore, it is not always a given, that your allies keep attacking when being threatened by enemy Heroes.

4. Level 4 Talents

Zarya I Am the Strongest
I Am the Strongest (Level 4) Zarya

Personal Barrier absorbs an additional 307 (146 + 4% per level) damage.

Zarya Give Me Twenty
Give Me Twenty (Level 4) Zarya

Quest: Regeneration Globes increase Shield Ally absorb amount by 15, up to 300 permanently.

Reward: After collecting 20 Regen Globes, permanently reduce the cooldown of Shield Ally by 3 seconds.

Zarya Speed Barrier
Speed Barrier (Level 4) Zarya

Shield Ally increases the allied Hero's Movement Speed by 35% for the duration.

Zarya Defensive Shielding ?
Defensive Shielding (Level 4) Zarya

Upon expiration or breaking, Personal Barrier and Shield Ally reduce the damage of the next 2 Hero Basic Attacks within 6 seconds by 75%.

4.1. Discussion

Give Me Twenty Icon Give Me Twenty offers a significant reward once completed. By making Zarya's Shield Ally Icon Shield Ally absorb more damage, you provide more protection to your allies and, as a consequence, can fill up your Energy level faster. Give Me Twenty also synergizes very well with Unyielding Defender Icon Unyielding Defender at Level 20.

Defensive Shielding Icon Defensive Shielding can be a rewarding alternative choice if the enemy team consists mainly of Basic Attack dependent Heroes, such as Illidan or Valla.

I Am the Strongest Icon I Am the Strongest offers additional self-protection, however, the original value should already be enough to keep Zarya safe. Thus, we do not recommend this talent.

Speed Barrier Icon Speed Barrier causes the shielded ally to run faster, however, the extra shield strength coming from Defensive Shielding Icon Defensive Shielding usually outperforms this boon.

5. Level 7 Talents

Zarya Pinpoint Accuracy
Pinpoint Accuracy (Level 7) Zarya

Particle Grenade deals 40% more damage to enemies hit by the center of the blast.

Zarya Explosive Barrier
Explosive Barrier (Level 7) Zarya

Upon expiration or breaking, Personal Barrier explodes, dealing 220 (104 + 4% per level) damage to nearby enemies.

Zarya To the Limit ?
To the Limit (Level 7) Zarya

While above 50 Energy your Basic Attack size is increased by 35%.

Zarya Hit Me
Hit Me (Level 7) Zarya

Damage absorbed by Zarya's Shields contributes 15% more Energy.

5.1. Discussion

Hit Me Icon Hit Me is one of the most impactful talents in Zarya's tree. It greatly amplifies her overall damage output by charging her Energy level much quicker. After acquiring Hit Me, we recommend absorbing shots from enemy Towers and Forts whenever it is safe to do so in order to maintain high Energy.

Pinpoint Accuracy Icon Pinpoint Accuracy possesses great synergy with Demolitions Expert Icon Demolitions Expert at Level 1 and Grenadier Icon Grenadier at Level 20. While hitting enemy Heroes with Particle Grenade Icon Particle Grenades to trigger the bonus damage does require a little bit of practise (we definitely recommend activating Quick Cast for this ability in the hotkey settings), it rewards you with a significant amount of bonus damage.

To the Limit Icon To the Limit should only be taken by rookie Zarya players who still do not feel very comfortable with her kit or who do not enjoy using skillshots a lot. For those players, we definitely recommend picking To the Limit combined with Feel the Heat Icon Feel the Heat.

Explosive Barrier Icon Explosive Barrier cannot compete with the additional damage provided by Hit Me Icon Hit Me or Pinpoint Accuracy Icon Pinpoint Accuracy.

6. Level 10 Talents

Zarya Graviton Surge
Graviton Surge (Level 10) Zarya
  • Cooldown: 100 seconds

Launch a gravity bomb that detonates after 1 second and draws enemy Heroes toward the center for 2.5 seconds.

Zarya Expulsion Zone
Expulsion Zone (Level 10) Zarya
  • Cooldown: 45 seconds

Launch a gravity bomb that deals 272 (129 + 4% per level) damage and creates an expulsion zone for 3.5 seconds. Enemies who enter the affected area are knocked back and have their Movement Speed reduced by 50% for 1 second.

Expulsion Zone Icon Expulsion Zone is an oftentimes underrated Heroic Ability. It can be used in several ways, both offensively and defensively. If used offensively, Expulsion Zone can trap enemy Heroes inside choke points or break the enemy team's formation by isolating primary targets from the rest of their allies.

If used defensively, Expulsion Zone can cover your own or your allies' retreat by keeping pursuing enemies at bay. It can also block enemies from entering certain locations, which can buy your team precious seconds to secure a Map Objective.

Graviton Surge Icon Graviton Surge is a powerful AoE crowd control Heroic Ability. While it does not stun the trapped targets, it renders them immobilized and unable to run away from your team's follow up damage.

We usually recommend picking Graviton Surge over Expulsion Zone Icon Expulsion Zone if your team composition features Heroes like E.T.C., Li-Ming, or Jaina, who can really capitalize well on your initiation by either applying their own crowd control or by dealing heavy damage on the trapped targets.

7. Level 13 Talents

Zarya Unstoppable Competitor
Unstoppable Competitor (Level 13) Zarya

Personal Barrier makes you Unstoppable for up to 2 seconds.

Zarya Spell Barrier
Spell Barrier (Level 13) Zarya

Upon expiration or breaking, Personal Barrier grants a Spell Shield that reduces Ability Damage taken by 75% for 3 seconds.

Zarya Endurance Training
Endurance Training (Level 13) Zarya

While at or above 75 Energy, Zarya gains Resistant, reducing all damage taken by 20%.

Zarya Pain is Temporary
Pain is Temporary (Level 13) Zarya
  • Cooldown: 30 seconds

Activate to consume all Energy and gain a shield that absorbs 0.5% of Zarya's maximum Health per Energy consumed and lasts for 3 seconds. Zarya may only have one personal shield active on herself at a time.

7.1. Discussion

Endurance Training Icon Endurance Training is a very safe talent to pick at Level 13. It offers increased protection from all sources, which greatly improves Zarya's survivability. Keep in mind that Endurance Training possesses outstanding synergy with Maximum Charge Icon Maximum Charge, as the increased Energy threshold allows Zarya to benefit longer from Endurance Training's bonus.

Pain is Temporary Icon Pain is Temporary is a surprisingly powerful defensive talent that can save Zarya's life if she finds herself in a dangerous situation. It is very important to highlight that the shield generated from Pain is Temporary works like Personal Barrier Icon Personal Barrier, which means that damage taken while Pain is Temporary is active will increase her Energy level.

Spell Barrier Icon Spell Barrier's Spell Shield effect is too unreliable to make it a superior choice over Endurance Training Icon Endurance Training.

Unstoppable Competitor Icon Unstoppable Competitor comes too late in Zarya's tree and offers too little compared to other talents at this tier.

8. Level 16 Talents

Zarya Plasma Shock
Plasma Shock (Level 16) Zarya

Particle Grenade slows Movement Speed by 35% for 1.5 second to enemies near the center.

Zarya Cleansing Shield
Cleansing Shield (Level 16) Zarya

Causes Shield Ally to remove all disabling effects and reduces its cooldown by 2 seconds.

Zarya Gain Train
Gain Train (Level 16) Zarya

Shield Ally now grants an untalented shield to a nearby ally upon impact.

Zarya Born in Battle
Born in Battle (Level 16) Zarya

While at or above 75 Energy, Zarya's cooldowns regenerate 25% faster.

8.1. Discussion

Born in Battle Icon Born in Battle allows Zarya to cast her Shields more frequently, which in return boosts her own damage output tremendously. Besides, Born in Battle also affects Zarya's Heroic Abilities' cooldowns, which makes this talent a fantastic choice at Level 16.

Plasma Shock Icon Plasma Shock is a great addition to Zarya's build if you went for Demolitions Expert Icon Demolitions Expert at Level 1 and Pinpoint Accuracy Icon Pinpoint Accuracy at Level 7.

Cleansing Shield Icon Cleansing Shield is a very useful talent if the enemy team is relies heavily on crowd control abilities, however, timing it is often quite difficult. Keep in mind that unlike Cleanse, Cleansing Shield cannot be cast preemptively on a target in order to prevent Stuns, Roots, or Slows.

Gain Train Icon Gain Train offers very little value compared to its alternative choices at Level 16, since it requires your target to stand close to another ally in order get any value off of this talent. Unfortunately, this is not always the case in non-competitive games.

9. Level 20 Talents

Zarya Gravity Kills
Gravity Kills (Level 20) Zarya

Increases Graviton Surge's duration by 1 second and causes it to deal 307 (146 + 4% per level) damage over the duration.

Zarya Clear Out
Clear Out (Level 20) Zarya

Increases Expulsion Zone's radius by 15% and Zarya's maximum Energy temporarily increases by 10 per enemy Hero hit for 10 seconds.

Zarya Grenadier
Grenadier (Level 20) Zarya

All Particle Grenade charges are returned at once.

Zarya Unyielding Defender
Unyielding Defender (Level 20) Zarya
  • Cooldown: 60 seconds

Activate to reset the cooldown of Personal Barrier and Shield Ally.

9.1. Discussion

Unyielding Defender Icon Unyielding Defender is one of the most useful talents in Zarya's tree for multiple reasons. First of all, it adds great defensive value during late game team fights when every death can make the difference between victory and defeat. Thus, being able to shield yourself and your allies more frequently can really change the course of battle. Secondly, by having two additional shields to Zarya's skill rotation, she is able to maintain a high Energy level at all times, which significantly enhances her offensive capabilities as well.

Clear Out Icon Clear Out allows Zarya to dominate team fights by either splitting the enemy team in half or preventing them to enter a certain location entirely. The bonus energy gained from Clear Out can ideally push Zarya's quite tremendously, which makes this talent a very rewarding one to pick.

Grenadier Icon Grenadier allows Zarya to fire Particle Grenade Icon Particle Grenades much more frequently than normal. This becomes particularly powerful if you chose to go for Grenade related talents, such as Demolitions Expert Icon Demolitions Expert, Pinpoint Accuracy Icon Pinpoint Accuracy, or Plasma Shock Icon Plasma Shock.

Gravity Kills Icon Gravity Kills's bonus damage is relatively insignificant, which is why we do not recommend this talent.

10. ChangeLog

  • 24 Nov. 2016: Swapped Pain is Temporary and Unstoppable Competitor in talent recommendations.
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