Oxygen

BlizzCon Hands-on Impression: Ragnaros

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Oxygen had the chance to play Ragnaros at BlizzCon and has listed his thoughts on the gameplay, design and viability of the hero.

Abilities and Talents

Before going over our impressions of the hero, it's worth including a list of abilities and talents. You can find all the information required in the spoiler tag below, as well as our current advice on picking talents. All abilities prefaced by "Molten Core:" imply that the initial ability changes after using the (D) trait.

Spoiler

Abilities

Empower Sulfuras (Q)
 - Mana: 25  
 - Cooldown: 4 seconds
 - Your next Basic Attack is instant, deals 222  damage (+4% per level) in an area, and heals you for 20% of the damage dealt. This healing is doubled versus Heroes.

 - Molten Core: Molten Swing - Stun and damage nearby enemies

Living Meteor (W)
 - Mana: 60
 - Cooldown: 12 seconds
 - Summon a meteor at the target point that deals 80 damage (+4% per level), then rolls in the target direction dealing 560 damage (+4% per level) over 2 seconds.

 - Molten Core: Meteor Shower - Summon a line of meteors.

Blast Wave (E)
 - Mana: 50
 - Cooldown: 10 seconds
 - Ignite yourself or an ally, granting 25% Movement Speed for 1.5 seconds, then causing a fiery explosion that deals 108 damage to nearby enemies.

 - Molten Core: Explosive Rune - Cause a delayed explosion in a large area.

Molten Core (D)
 - Cooldown: 100 seconds
 - Channel on an allied or destroyed Fort or Keep to unleash your full power. Your replace the Fort or Keep temporarily, gain new Abilities, and have 4156 Health (+4% per level) that burns away over 18 seconds.
 - When your Health is fully depleted, your return to your original form.

Talents

Level 1
- Sulfuras Hunters
 - Quest: Every time you kill a Minion with Empower Sulfuras, its damage is increased by 1, up to 30.
 - Reward: After killing 30 Minions, increase its damage by an additional 90.
- Shifting Meteor
 - Reward: After hitting 50 heroes with Living Meteor, its duration is increased by 30%, and you can recast the Ability to change its direction once per cast.
- Engulfing Flame
 - Blast Wave's cooldown is reduced by 2 seconds, and its radius is increased by 15%

Level 4
- Fire Ward
 - When Living Meteor hits an Enemy Hero, you gain a charge of Spell Block, reducing damage from the next enemy ability against you by 50%. Can hold up to 2 charges.
- Slow Burn
 - Blast wave slows enemies hit by 40% for 2 seconds.
- Catching Fire
 - Quest: Gathering a Regeneration Globe increases your Health Regeneration by 2 per second, up to 30.
 - Reward: After gathering 15 Regeneration Globes, you can activate Catching Fire to gain Resistant for 3 seconds, reducing damage taken by 25%

Level 7
- Hand of Ragnaros
 - If Empower Sulfuras hits at least 2 enemy Heroes, it restores 10 Mana and its cooldown is reduced by 2 seconds.
- Molten Power
 - Each enemy hero hit by Living Meteor increases the damage of your next Living Meteor by 15%, up to a maximum of 75%.
- Superheated
 - When you cast Blast Wave on yourself, it deals 100% increased damage.

Level 10
- Sulfuras Smash
 - Mana: 75
 - Cooldown: 60 seconds
 - Hul Sulfuras at the target area. It lands after 0.75 seconds, dealing 187 damage (+4% per level). Enemies in the center take an additional 374 damage (+4% per level) and are stunned for 0.5 seconds.
- Lava Wave
 - Mana: 80
 - Cooldown: 100 seconds
 - Release a wave of lava from your Core that travels down the targeted lane, dealing 603 damage (+4% per level) per second to non-Structure enemies in its path and instantly killing enemy Minions. Damage increased by 33% versus Heroes.

Level 13
- Cauterized Wounds
 - Empower Sulfuras heals you for an additional 60% of the damage dealt to heroes over 2 seconds.
- Tempered Flame
 - When Blast Wave damages an enemy Hero, you gain a Shield equal to 100% of the damage dealt for 3 seconds.
- Submerge
 - Cooldown: 90 seconds
 - Activate to place yourself in stasis and heal for 624 Health (+4% per level) over 3 seconds.

Level 16
- Giant Scorcher
 - Empower Sulfuras burns enemy Heroes for 6% of their maximum Health over 3 seconds. This additional damage does not heal you.
- Meteor Bomb
 - Living Meteor explodes at the end of its path, dealing 229 damage (+4% per level) to all nearby enemies.
- Blast Echo
 - After Blast Wave explodes, cast another Blast Wave on yourself. Can only occur once per cast.

Level 20
- Flames of Sulfuron
 - Sulfuras Smash slows enemies by 50% for 2 seconds and enemies in the center are stunned for an additional 0.5 seconds.
- Lava Surge
 - Lava Wave gains an additional charge and its cooldown is reduced by 10 seconds.
- Heroic Difficulty
 - Your Health and damage are increased by 50% while in Molten Core, and its cooldown is reduced by 50 seconds.

Hero Design

The iconic Ragnaros is one of the two Heroes announced at BlizzCon 2016. At a first glance, he is an ability-focused ''battlemage-like'' Assassin that relies on abilities to deliver the bulk of his damage, but enjoys swooping in for a few basic attacks whenever the opportunity arises. 

He stands out, however, in his ability to quite literally become a raid boss by ''engulfing'' a friendly Fort or Keep or ANY dead Fort or Keep (which includes opponents') through his Trait, Molten Core, after a few seconds of short range channeling. While under Molten Core, living friendly Forts have their attack disabled, and their normal health bar replaced by Ragnaros' alternate form's own humongous health bar. While in this form, Ragnaros also gains access to 3 new abilities that replace his normal abilities. You don't want to pick a fight with Ragnaros while in this form, let alone when he is supported by allies. You can leave this form at any time by using your trait again, or by losing all of your health, which slowly degenerates over the ability's duration. Dying while in this form simply sends you back to your original form, with however much health you had upon cast.

Empower Sulfuras (Q) is a run-of-the-mill basic attack ''preparation'' skill that makes your next attack deal a significant amount of ability damage to the next target (and nearby enemies) hit. You are healed for a small amount of the damage dealt, and this amount is doubled versus Heroes. Highly reminiscent of Arthas' Frostmourne Hungers and other such abilities. Excessively satisfying ''crunchy'' sound upon use. Gives Ragnaros a very respectable amount of lane sustainability, and is one of the main contributor to his burst damage combo. Great at dealing with Mercenary Camps.

Living Meteor (W) is a vector-targeted line damage ability. Its targeting is reminiscent of Alarak's Telekinesis, but in practice, you use it as you would use Gul'dan's Corruption. This one deals a ridiculous amount of damage to anyone foolish enough to remain within the Meteor's area of effect for any amount of time. To put things into perspective, I've taken a wild Varian's health from 50% to 0 as he attempted to escape my wrath through a narrow gate, unaware of the boulder's potency. To me, this is Ragnaros' defining ability. Waveclear, combo, poke, punishing runners... it does it all. And it feels great. It may also be slightly overtuned. Looks like the Diablo II's Druid's Molten Boulder, which is cool.

Blast Wave (E) buffs an ally (hero, minion, or yourself, even), granting a short and relatively potent movement speed increase. Upon expiring, a relatively large explosion occurs around the target, dealing are of effect damage. The damage is mediocre, but the movement speed is particularly useful for landing Empower Sulfuras or positioning yourself for Living Meteor. This ability is significantly improved by talents, most notably the one that double-casts the ability.

Sulfuras Smash (R1) launches a projectile that deals a large amount of damage in a big area of effect. Enemies in the center of the area of effect take significantly more damage, and are stunned for half a second. Huge range, huge combo potential, looks amazing. There's a slight amount of synergy with the rest of the kit, as the stun allows you to reliably land the rest of your abilities, but most of the time, you'll be looking for sheer ''damage everyone a lot'' value with this one. The cooldown is relatively short given the power of the ability.

Lava Wave (R2) causes a huge wave of lava to pour down from your Core structure down the chosen lane, all the way to your opponent's own Core. Minions, Mercenaries, and Heroes (not structures) that touch the wave are completely annihilated. I cannot understate this; the wave's damage is grossly overtuned, dealing over 1000 dps at level 16 or so, although I suppose it is avoidable, and can never be used to contribute to some objectives. It will always generate a tonne of experience for Ragnaros, however, due to its global kill nature. Combined with Molten Core, Lava Wave probably makes Ragnaros one of the best Heroes at protecting Forts and Keeps especially. Looks amazing, feels amazing - but not when you're standing in it. Will yield surprise Abathur kills every time.

Gameplay and Impressions

Ragnaros is great. I think the English language doesn't have the words to describe how sweet he feels to play. The art teams - graphics and sounds alike - have outdone themselves in terms of conveying ridiculous fiery destruction.

With competitive waveclearing, solid unavoidable damage, flexible Heroic ability choices, a versatile kit, and, of course, the unique ability to push 2-3 Heroes away from Forts and Keeps, I feel that Ragnaros may become the new go-to ''what do we need? Oh, right, anything'' Valla-Gul'dan-esque damage dealer. I suppose this versatility is also a weakness of sorts, as he is not particularly outstanding at anything, but rather, can respond to a variety of situations well. He also handles Mercenary Camps with relative ease, thanks to Empower Sulfuras' sustain and area damage.

I had the chance to try all 3 Q-W-E-oriented builds. Empower Sulfuras build offers excellent sustain and Mercenary clearing, but getting in the thick of things for juicy multiple Hero hits can be difficult, as Ragnaros is not particularly resilient. Living Meteor build was my favourite of the bunch. That thing helps with waveclearing, besieging, and poking, all while keeping you about as safe as you can be. It sucks for dealing with Mercenaries, however, and missing Meteor is awfully punishing, so beware. The level 1 talent that increases the duration of Meteor and allows you to redirect it is really fun to use, and has some particularly strong synergy with the level 16 exploding Meteor, as it essentially guarantees that you'll get that damage off. Blast Wave build had me very skeptical at first, but that one's true power is unlocked at 16, when you get to double cast the thing automatically. Combined with the shielding provided at 13, you can pretty reliably generate shields that scale with how daring you are to hug as many opponents as possible. This one would be quite strong against melee-heavy team compositions, and otherwise lackluster.

I do wish I could say more about him, but we're just dealing with an exceptionally well designed Hero here that is extremely satisfying to play. Although not particularly difficult to play, he will most certainly be a crowd favourite, if not just for the fact that it's Ragnaros. 

Meta Meta?

Ragnaros is currently grossly overtuned. What he lacks in utility, he significantly makes up for in raw damage. I may or not be slightly worried about this, as, last year, when I tried out Greymane, Lunara, & Cho'gall, I believe changes were not made to their kits or numbers in any way. I did get confirmation from one of the devs, however, that they would likely revisit some of his numbers. And so, I feel that his viability will be directly tied in to his damage values, somewhat akin to Valla and Gul'dan. He's a good choice for rounding out your team composition, but he doesn't bring anything significant that you would build your team around. He would also be interesting as a counterpick to push-heavy teams that might include Azmodan or Sylvanas. I have a feeling he may be at his strongest on Tomb of the Spider Queen because you can't really rely on the map objective to push down structures while avoiding Molten Core. Consider he can eat temple lasers and Blackheart's cannonballs, by the way, so the respective maps might see him a lot as well. And Lava instantly destroys Zerg waves of any size. Is this problematic? Probably, and we shall find out to what extent exactly in December.

Our writer Kendric has also provided us with some gameplay footage of Ragnaros, which you can find here.

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The first time I saw his gameplay video I knew that the bread and butter build would be Living Meteor. The damage and range is too good to be ignored.

Either the devs will hit him with the hardest nerfs as the meta metas, or simply tune down his health to make him the squishiest Assassin alongside Chromie.

How much base health he has, by the way?

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9 hours ago, Valhalen said:

Either the devs will hit him with the hardest nerfs as the meta metas, or simply tune down his health to make him the squishiest Assassin alongside Chromie.

Blizzard? Nerfs? They would never!

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On 24.11.2016 at 2:19 AM, Oxygen said:

Doubt they'll make him squishy. It goes ''against the fantasy''.

Isn't fire kinda squishy tho?

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      The first Battleground objective event will now activate 90 seconds into the match, following a 30-second warning, for the following Battlegrounds: Blackheart’s Bay Doubloon Chests will now consistently spawn 3 minutes after the final Chest during a the previous event has been captured. Braxis Holdout Beacon events after the first will now consistently spawn 2 minutes and 10 seconds after a previous Zerg wave has been defeated. Dragon Shire Shrines will now consistently spawn 2 minutes after a Dragon Knight has been killed. The first Battleground objective event will now activate 3 minutes into the match, following a 30-second warning, for the following Battlegrounds: Battlefield of Eternity Cursed Hollow Garden of Terror Haunted Mines Infernal Shrines Sky Temple Towers of Doom Warhead Junction The following Battleground objective timers are unchanged: Tomb of the Spider Queen Volskaya Foundry The Minimap will now indicate the next objective spawn location for the following Battlegrounds: Cursed Hollow The first Shrine indicator will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, and subsequent indicators will appear 15 seconds after the previous Tribute has been captured. Infernal Shrines The first Tribute indicator will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, and subsequent indicators will appear 30 seconds after a Punisher is defeated. Hover the cursor over a Shrine indicator on the Minimap to display whether it will be a Mortar, Frost, or Arcane Shrine. Sky Temple The first Temple indicators will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, as well as 30 seconds after all Temples in the same event have been depleted. Towers of Doom The first Altar indicators will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, as well as 30 seconds after the final Altars in an event has been captured. Warhead Junction The first Warhead indicators will appear on the Minimap 30 seconds after the game begins, as well as 30 seconds after the final Warhead in an event has been collected. Regeneration Globes
      Regeneration Globes will now become neutral (claimable by both teams) if not claimed within 3 seconds. Time before Regeneration Globes expire has been reduced to 6 seconds. Structures
      All attacking structures no longer have ammunition. Walls will now be destroyed if their connected Towers and Gate are also destroyed. Walls can still be attacked normally. Tower vision range has been increased by 25% Tower damage to minions has been reduced by 25% Structures now have a warmup period of .5 seconds before firing and must face their targets completely Structure attack warning responsiveness has been significantly improved Standalone Towers (found next to Forts and Keeps) have been removed. The Health, granted Experience, and Damage of Standalone Towers has been redistributed into their surrounding gate Towers, Forts, and Keeps. Forts and Keeps now have True Sight, meaning they will reveal and attack Stealthed Heroes. True Sight is disabled while the Structure is disabled by effects such as the Raven Lord’s Curse or Sylvanas’ Black Arrow Trait. Minions
      Minion base damage has been increased by roughly 10% The 5 second delay before Minions spawn after the game begins has been removed. Mercenaries 
      Respawn Timers Mercenary Camps will now spawn 60 seconds after the game begins Siege Giant Camp Siege Defenders Defending Siege Giant attacks are now telegraphed on the terrain and can be dodged. Siege Laners Attack telegraphing and missile trajectory has been significantly improved. Hellbat Camp Respawn times have been doubled Hellbats will now prioritize structures Defender Hellbat Stats Base health increased by 125%, Health scaling increased by 200% Damage increased by 125% Damage scaling reduced by 50% Laner Hellbat Stats Base health increased by roughly 25% Health scaling increased by 43% Base damage increased by 50% Damage scaling decreased by 66% Damage taken from structures reduced by 50% Attacks now apply a 3-second stacking -5 Armor debuff to all targets, stacking up to 20 times (structures included) Knight Camp Wizard Knight Laner Wizard Knight Laner has a Spell Armor Aura Grants all nearby Allies (Minions, Mercenaries, and Heroes) 30 Spell Armor Spell Armor is immediately removed upon leaving the aura area. This Aura is destroyed when the Wizard is killed Wizard Knight Defender Grants nearby Knight Defenders a 15 Spell Armor aura This Aura is destroyed when the Wizard is killed Sapper Camp Sapper Defenders Now fire their attacks at target areas, instead of directly at Heroes. This behaves like the laning Sappers Sapper Explosion damage now scales over time Health scaling increased by 33% Respawn timer across all maps increased from 105 to 120 seconds Laning Sappers now have 100 Armor vs Structures while charging and Towers will ignore charging Sappers Art
      Heroes, Abilities, and Talents
      Zeratul has received updated art to coincide with Talent changes. Minimap
      Minimap art has been updated across all Battlegrounds. Stealth
      Added an overlay to indicate when a Stealthed character goes Invisible Added a new Stealth visual effect. Enemy Stealthed Heroes should now be easier to spot. Battlegrounds
      Sandbox Custom Game Improvements
      The following new cheats have been added to Sandbox Custom Games: Spawn Camps Respawn all Mercenary Camps. Spawn Dummy Creates a dialog allowing players to choose a type of dummy to spawn. Player can then click in the game world to create a dummy of the selected dummy type at mouse cursor position. One player cannot spawn more than 20 dummies. When a player deals damage or heals a target dummy the Target Dummy Panel will pop up displaying the damage or healing dealt. If player deals damage to multiple dummies with an AOE ability, the number will be the combination of damage done to all dummies. If the team hasn't dealt damage or healing to any of the dummies for 8 seconds, the Target Dummy Panel will disappear for that team. If a player hasn't dealt damage or healing to any of the dummies for 8 seconds, their damage and DPS will be reset to 0. Clear Dummies If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is unchecked, remove all the dummies created by all players. If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is checked, remove all the dummies created by that player. Toggle Fog of War Disabling Fog of War for a team will remove Fog of War, revealing the whole map for that team. Reset HP/MP If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is unchecked, reset all players' Health and Mana to full. If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is checked, reset the player's Health and Mana to full. Complete Quests If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is unchecked, complete all talent quests for all player. If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is checked, complete all talent quests for that player. Instant Respawn If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is unchecked, instantly respawn all dead Heroes. If the "Share Cheat" checkbox is checked, instantly respawn the player's Hero. Haunted Mines
      Issuing a Move command within the Mines while on the Battleground’s upper level, or vice versa, will now cause the Hero to use the Mine Entrance or Exit that is the shortest distance from the issued order. Summoned Grave Golem Fort and Keep attacks no longer reduce attack speed Will no longer interrupt its attacks mid-swing to use an Ability Now passes through player-created walls rather than stopping to destroy them Ranked Battleground Rotation Update
      Added to Rotation Warhead Junction Removed from Rotation Volskaya Foundry Garden of TerrorThe full Ranked Battleground Rotation is now as follows: Battlefield of Eternity Braxis Holdout Cursed Hollow Dragon Shire Infernal Shrines Sky Temple Tomb of the Spider Queen Towers of Doom Warhead Junction Design
      Stealth
      Stealth players will now become “Invisible” after remaining still for 1.5 seconds. Invisible Heroes will not display the Stealth visual effect and can still be removed from Stealth by taking damage. This includes Heroes under the effects of temporary Stealth effects such as Samuro’s Windwalk or Tyrande’s Shadowstalk. Additionally, Heroes cannot become Invisible while occupying a capture point, such as Braxis Holdout or Mercenary Camp Beacons. Instead, they will retain normal Stealth visual effects. User Interface
      In-Game UI
      General Hero portraits will now be displayed when heroes are inside the following Vehicles, Battleground objectives, or Hero Abilities: Dragon Knight Garden Terror Triglav Protector Anub'arak - Cocoon Lt. Morales – Medivac Dropship Stitches - Gorge Zagara - Devouring Maw Manual Talent Tier and Hero Status Callouts Players can now press ALT + left-click Hero portraits and the Team Level UI at the top of the screen to generate notifications for the following situations: Press ALT + left-click an ally’s Hero portrait to inform teammates when that ally needs assistance. ALT + left-clicking a dead Hero’s portrait will generate a chat message indicating that Hero’s remaining respawn time. ALT + left-clicking an enemy Hero portrait will ping that Hero’s location on the Minimap if they are within allied vision. If that enemy is outside of allied vision, a chat message will inform allies that the Hero is missing. Press ALT + right-click the Team Level UI to indicate when both teams are on even Talent tiers, or when one team has a Talent tier advantage over the other.  
      Heroes
      Assassin

      Nova

      Abilities
      Snipe (Q) Damage reduced from 310 to 255. Baseline quest added: Hitting an enemy Hero increases the damage of Snipe by 5% stacking 5 times. When at max stacks (5) it gains an additional 25% damage. If Snipe fails to hit a target, all stacks are lost. Pinning Shot (W) Damage from 110 to 105 Holo Decoy (E) Added functionality: Decoys now deal 10% of Nova’s damage Permanent Cloak (Trait) Added functionality: Gain 15% movement speed while Stealthed Triple Tap (R) Damage per shot from 338 to 372 (New) Ghost Protocol (1) Activate to instantly cloak, leave a Holo Decoy at your feet, and become unrevealable for .5 seconds. Talents
      Level 1 Advanced Cloaking (Trait) New functionality: Increase your Stealth movement speed by 5%. While Stealthed, gain 2 additional mana regeneration per second. Level 7 Snipe Master (Q) Removed Perfect Shot (Q) Moved from Level 16 Cooldown reduction on Hero hit reduced from 3 to 2 seconds Level 13 Psionic Efficiency (Q) Bonus range increased from 10 to 15% (New Talent) Ionic Force Field (Trait) Gain 25 Armor for 2 seconds after losing stealth Level 16 Lethal Decoy (E) Damage bonus from clones increased from 40 to 50% Level 20 (New Talent) Apollo Suit (Trait) Reduce the cooldown of Permanent Cloak from 3 to 1 second
      Samuro

      Stats
      Basic Attack damage increased from 88 to 110 Abilities
      Mirror Image (Q) Samuro will now appear in the direction of the player’s Mouse Cursor when Mirror Image is cast. Mirror Image damage is no longer a fraction of Samuro’s Attack Damage. Mirror Image base damage has been greatly reduced to 9. Mirror Images are no longer instantly destroyed by Structures Critical Strike (W) Cooldown increased from 8 to 10 seconds Illusion Master (R) New functionality: Reduce the cooldown of Advancing Strikes to 8 seconds Now increases the attack damage of Mirror Images by 100% Now also increases Samuro’s Basic Attack damage by 10% Image Transmission (Trait) Additional functionality: Activate to switch places with the target Mirror Image, removing most negative effects from Samuro and the target Mirror Image. 25-second cooldown. Talents
      Tooltips for various talents have been updated to reflect whether Samuro or his Mirror Images benefit from their effects Level 1 Way of the Wind (E) New Functionality: Gain 40% Movement Speed for 3 seconds upon entering or exiting Stealth by using Wind Walk Way of the Blade (W) No longer grants bonus Critical Strike damage Way of Illusion (Q) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent Level 4 One with the Wind (E) Armor gain now also lasts for 3 seconds after being revealed Mirror Images now also gain Armor Armor amount reduced from 60 to 30 Level 7 Phantom Pain (W) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent Crushing Blows (W) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent Bonus Critical Strike damage has been removed Additional functionality: Samuro’s Basic Attacks against enemy Heroes reduce the cooldown of Critical Strike by 1.5 seconds Level 13 Kawarimi (E) Reduced the time between Samuro issuing a new order after using Wind Walk and the image following it. It should now be harder for the new Image to follow Samuro’s new movements after using Wind Walk. Level 16 Press the Attack (Trait) Attack Speed bonus reduced from 15% to 10% per stack. Maximum bonus decreased from 60% to 40% Harsh Winds (E) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent Merciless Strikes (W) Mirror Images no longer benefit from this talent
      Valeera

      Abilities
      Vanish (D) Movement Speed increased from 10% to 20% Ambush (Q) If Valeera is Vanished for 3 seconds, this ability has 5 range and teleports Valeera behind her target. Damage reduced from 180 to 130 Now also reduces enemy Armor by 10 for 4 seconds Cheap Shot (W) Stun duration reduced from 1.25 to .75 seconds Now Blinds the target for 2 seconds after the stun effect ends If Valeera is Vanished for 3 seconds, this ability has 5 range and teleports Valeera behind her target Garrote (E) Silence duration increased from 2.25 to 2.75 seconds If Valeera is Vanished for 3 seconds, this ability has 5 range and teleports Valeera behind her target Talents
      Level 1 Subtlety (D) Adjusted functionality: Now triggers when Valeera teleports to her target with Ambush, Cheap Shot, and Garrote. Energy return reduced from 10 to 8 per second. Crippling Poison (Active) Slow duration reduced from 5 to 4 seconds. Valeera’s poison is no longer removed after the first damaging Ability, but instead is applied by all Valeera's Abilities for 4 seconds. This duration does not start until Valeera damages her first enemy. Level 4 Wound Poison (Active) Healing reduction duration decreased from 5 to 4 seconds Valeera’s poison is no longer removed after the first damaging Ability, but instead is applied by all Valeera's Abilities for 4 seconds. This duration does not start until Valeera damages her first enemy Level 7 Slice and Dice (E) Valeera's Basic Attacks now restore 2 Energy. Level 13 Death from Above (Q) New functionality: Ambush reduces the cooldown of Vanish by 4 seconds. Blind (W) Now increases the duration of Cheap Shot’s Blind from 2 to 4 seconds. Strangle (E) Spell Power reduction increased from 25% to 40% Duration reduced from 7 to 6 seconds Level 16 Assassinate (Q) Bonus damage reduced from 100% to 50% Now also increases the Armor reduction of Ambush by 10 when the target is isolated. Moved from level 7 Expose Armor (E) Removed. Level 20 Nightslayer (D) Removed. Rupture (D) Damage bonus now stacks immediately to 100%, instead of stacking up to 30%. Moved from level 16 Elusiveness (D) Moved from Level 13 Movement Speed bonus increased from 10% to 20% LEVEL (TIER) VALEERA TALENTS 1 (1) (!) Vigor (Passive) Subtlety (D) Combat Readiness (Passive) Crippling Poison (Active) 4 (2) Relentless Strikes (Q) Hemorrhage (E) Initiative (D) Wound Poison (Active) 7 (3) Mutilate (Q) (!) Fatal Finesse (W) Slice and Dice (E)   10 (4) Smoke Bomb (R) Cloak of Shadows (R) — — 13 (5) Death from Above (Q) Blind (W) Strangle (E)   16 (6) Seal Fate (Q) Assassinate (Q) Thistle Tea (Active)   20 (7) Adrenaline Rush (R) Enveloping Shadows (R) Rupture (E) Elusiveness (D) (!) indicates a Questing Talent. Italic text indicates a NEW Talent. Underlined text indicates a MOVED Talent.
      Valla

      Abilities
      Level 1 Monster Hunter (Q) Now tracks stacks instead of damage on the quest tracker
      Zeratul

      Abilities
      Shadow Assault (R) Removed (New Talent) Might of the Nerazim (R) Passive: After using an Ability, Zeratul’s next Basic Attack within 6 seconds deals 40% more damage Activate to duplicate the last ability cast. Damaging abilities deal 50% less damage. This ability does not benefit from talents. 20-Second Cooldown  Talents
      Level 1 Vorpal Blade (1) Added as a baseline ability. Default Hotkey: 1 (New Talent) Move Unseen (Passive) Gain 25% bonus Movement Speed while Stealthed Shadow Hunter (E) Regen Globe required for quest completion reduced from 20 to 15 Mana cost reduction of Blink increased from 2 to 3 Level 4 Combo Slash (Passive) Removed Grim Task (Passive) Removed (New Talent) Psionic Strength (Passive) Damaging an enemy Hero with Basic Attacks or Abilities increases Zeratul's damage by 6% for 3 seconds, stacking up to 5 times. (New Talent) Darkness Descends (Active) Passive: Increase Zeratul’s attack speed by 10%. Activated ability – Zeratul gains 40% bonus attack speed for 5 seconds. 30-second cooldown Level 7 Wormhole (E) Duration increased from 2 to 3 seconds Slip into Shadow (E) Removed (New Talent) Warp Skirmisher (1) Vorpal Blade now has 2 charges. Casting Vorpal Blade also causes Zeratul's next Basic Attack within 6 seconds to deal 30% bonus damage Level 16 Sentenced to Death (W) Bonus damage reduced from 40 to 30% Level 20 Rewind (Active) Removed Nerazim Fury (R) Removed (New Talent) Twilight Falls (R) Activating Might of the Nerazim resets the cooldown of all of Zeratul’s Basic Abilities (New Talent) Shadow Mending (Passive) Zeratul heals himself for 75% of Ability Damage Dealt to enemy Heroes LEVEL (TIER) ZERATUL TALENTS 1 (1) PH PH PH PH 4 (2) PH PH PH PH 7 (3) PH PH PH PH 10 (4) PH PH — — 13 (5) PH PH PH PH 16 (6) PH PH PH PH 20 (7) PH PH PH PH (!) indicates a Questing Talent. Italic text indicates a NEW Talent. Underlined text indicates a MOVED Talent. Specialist

      Abathur

      Abilities
      Spawn Locust (Trait) Health increased from 288 to 316  Talents
      Level 1 Survival Instincts (Trait) Bonus Health decreased from 50% to 40% Level 7 Calldown: MULE (Active) No longer refills Structure ammo
      The Lost Vikings

      Talents
      Level 4 It’s a Sabotage! (Passive) No longer removes Structure ammo Damage increased from 27 to 35 Warrior

      Muradin

      Talents
      Level 4 Sledgehammer (Q) No longer removes Ammo from structures Collection
      Hero Price Reduction
      Artanis’ prices have been reduced to 7,000 Gold and 625 Gems. New Bundles – The following new Bundles and Skin Packs are available for a limited time!
      Hanzo Heroic Bundle Winter Veil 2017 Bundle Winter Veil Classic Bundle New Announcers
      Hanzo New Skins
      Hanzo Kinoko Honzo Sora Hanzo Dragon Hanzo Demon Hanzo Farstrider Hanzo Icebound Farstrider Hanzo Iron Farstrider Hanzo Holy Farstrider Hanzo Scarlet Farstrider Hanzo Genji Storm Oni Genji Golden Genji Nihon Genji Leoric Immortal Space Lord Leoric Lúcio Azure Soundblast Lúcio Lunara Harvest Champion Lunara Zarya Citrine Thunderguard Zarya Industrial Zarya New Mounts
      The following Mounts have been awarded to players who reached Platinum in Hero League or Bronze in Team League during 2017 Ranked Season 3: Titanium Cybersteed Carbon Cybersteed Master Cybersteed The following Mounts have been awarded to players who reached Master or higher in Hero League or Team League during 2017 Ranked Season 3: Epic Titanium Cybersteed Epic Carbon Cybersteed Epic Master Cybersteed Bug Fixes
      General
      Fixed a number of typo and tooltip errors across several aspects of the game. Art
      Kharazim: Kharazim's arms and upper body now animated correctly during his dizzy animation. Leoric: The Shroud of the Dead King Talent will now correctly play an animation and a sound when activated. Samuro: Monkey King Samuro’s model will no longer exhibit flickering during Hero Select while running Medium or High graphic settings. The Lost Vikings: Fixed an issue causing Baelog to cast superfluous shadows on the terrain. Battlegrounds
      Sky Temple: Fixed an issue that could prevent Temple lasers from appearing correctly on the Minimap. Structures: Auriel's Blinding Flash and Artanis' Suppression Pulse can no longer Blind Structures. Towers of Doom: The Headless Horseman Boss is no longer incorrectly categorized as a Monster. Volskaya Foundry: Fixed an issue in which Heroes on the outer edge of the Hall of Storms would not receive Healing or protection. Heroes, Abilities, and Talents
      Alexstrasza: Life-Binder is no longer interrupted when entering or exiting Dragonqueen. Diablo: Fixed an issue that could cause Shadow Charge to deal its collision damage multiple times under certain circumstances. Garrosh: Casting Wrecking Ball on Mercenaries will no longer cause them to leash while in combat. Gul'dan: Movement caused by a conveyor belt will no longer cancel Rain of Destruction channeling. Kel'thuzad: The Power of Icecrown Talent will now correctly grant bonus Spell Power for enemy Heroes Slowed by Chains of Kel’Thuzad with the Chains of Ice Talent. Li-Ming: Zei's Vengeance and Arcane Orb tooltips have been updated to clarify bonus damage functionality. Damage amounts have not been changed. Lt. Morales: The Second Opinion Talent will now correctly grant cooldown reduction when one of the Heroes struck by Displacement Grenade is piloting a Vehicle, like the Garden Terror. Lunara: Fixed an inconsistency that allowed Lunara to cast Leaping Strike over some, but not all, allied units after learning Boundless Stride. Medivh: Creating a Portal entrance after learning Portal Mastery and then entering the Triglav Protector will no longer prevent him from using the Protector’s abilities. Muradin: Learning Reverberation no longer incorrectly updates the Attack Speed Slow amount in Thunder Clap’s tooltip. Murky: Spawn Egg with the Egg Hunt Talent can now be cast correctly on Volskaya Foundry’s conveyor belts. User Interface
      Death Recap: Fortification Camp Turret attacks now display a Turret icon in the Death Recap screen.
    • By Stan

      The free Hero rotation has been updated for the week of November 21 and Junkrat's available for the first time!
      Free-to-Play Hero Rotation: November 21, 2017
      Li Li ETC Zagara Butcher Kael'thas Artanis Rehgar Tyrael Azmodan Garrosh Alarak (Slot unlocked at Player Level 5) Tracer (Slot unlocked at Player Level 10) Valeera (Slot unlocked at Player Level 15) Junkrat (Slot unlocked at Player Level 20) (Source)