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Mal'Ganis Meta Tier List (November 2018)

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Our Meta Tier List has been updated for the latest patch!

Welcome to Icy Veins's once-again-belated Meta Tier List for the October 16 patch, which also takes the latest October 31 patch into account. The goal of this list is to try and detail game's current metagame state. The prime goal of such lists is to inform players regarding popular and trending team composition drafting strategies (i.e. the drafting metagame). Although tier listings are generally the product of balance, many factors come into play when discussing the relative perceived strengths of heroes, including player regions, maps, play style, skill level, and, of course, personal perception. As such, any tier list—including this very one—should never be interpreted as gospel, but rather, as a guide to better grasp what to expect with regards to typical drafting experiences. One useful application of such lists is to allow you know which heroes to look out for in terms of practice and counterplay, ultimately improving your knowledge of the game.

Using the list

Spoiler

As stated above, tier lists are easy to mistake for gospel. As new strategies are discovered and experimented with, so changes the perception of the relative strengths of each hero. Tier lists still prove to be useful as a snapshot of player expectations in terms of drafting. Although it is generally considered preferable to focus on high tier heroes (Prime and Core tiers), it is important to note that Heroes of the Storm's wild character and map designs make it so that any given hero's tier position is prone to fluctuate depending on the situation at hand.

One classic example of such is that of Kerrigan on the Infernal Shrines map. Although we currently judge her to be a mid-tier hero, her drafting priority shoots up to first-pick or first-ban material on this specific map due to the nature of its objective. Certain heroes also synergise so well with each other that the sole fact of having the opportunity of drafting them together is generally enough to increase their potential. Tassadar and Tracer, for instance, are generally nightmarish to deal with for many. There are too many examples of these interactions to reasonably produce here, but we invite you to consult our guides to know exactly where and when each hero shines. The guides have been linked in the lists below for your convenience - just click any of the hero names to access them.

A  next to a hero's name means its tier list position has increased since the previous month whereas a  means just the opposite. Additionally, a + or - sign indicates short-to-medium term predictions (which is to say, about a month) for tier increase(s) or decrease(s), respectively. These are often updated after significant balance patches and/or when clear trends are emerging. The (ban) comment is a ban recommendation; Meta heroes should be picked and banned first, though heroes from other groups should be considered as well depending on how team compositions are shaping up.

If you're newer to the game, also consider visiting our glossary for a comprehensive list of discrete Heroes of the Storm terms.

 

Current ranked mode map rotation

 
  • Alterac Pass
  • Battlefield of Eternity
  • Braxis Holdout
  • Cursed Hollow
  • Dragon Shire
  • Infernal Shrines
  • Sky Temple
  • Tomb of the Spider Queen
  • Towers of Doom
  • Volskaya Foundry

 

Meta picks

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
Mal'Ganis (new) (ban) Genji (ban) Tyrande (ban)

 

High-tier generalists

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
Diablo+ (ban) Sonya VarianTwin Blades of Fury(ban) Zeratul Cassia Jaina Ana
Garrosh (ban)       Fenix (ban) Kael'thas-   Malfurion
        Raynor (ban)     Whitemane

 

Mid-tier generalists

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
Anub'arak+ Artanis Alarak Tracer (ban) Greymane  Azmodan↓↓ Abathur Alexstrasza
Arthas Dehaka (ban) Kerrigan*   Hanzo (ban) Gul'dan Zarya** Auriel
Blaze Yrel Maiev   Lunara Junkrat   Brightwing
E.T.C. (ban)   Malthael   Sgt.Hammer (ban) Kel'Thuzad    Deckard 
Johanna   Ragnaros   Tychus Li-Ming   Kharazim
Muradin   Thrall   Zul'jin Mephisto   Li Li
Stitches (ban)   VarianColossus Smash     Nazeebo   Rehgar
VarianTaunt         Orphea***   Stukov
          Sylvanas    
          Zagara    

*Moved from situational to generalist.
**Moved from Fighter to Support
***Pure conjecture

Low-tier generalists

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
Chen Gazlowe Valeera Falstad Chromie Medivh (ban)+ Lt. Morales
  D.Va Murky   Valla Probius   Lúcio+
    The Butcher          

 

Situational picks (map, team composition, or counterpick)

Tank Bruiser Fighter Stalker Marksman Mage Support Healer
Cho'gall (ban) Leoric Illidan Nova Cho'gall (ban) Tassadar Uther (ban)
Tyrael Rexxar Xul Samuro     The Lost Vikings (ban)*  

*Moved from Marksman to Support

 

Meta heroes define the metagame. They are very often banned or picked right away, as they generally dictate the pace of most drafts and matches.

Generalists form the core of your team and are generally picked after Meta picks have been distributed. They tend to work on most maps, and as part of and against most team compositions. Since this group includes most heroes, I elected to split it into three tiers. High-tier rankings are a result of performance (i.e. win rates) and popularity (i.e. pick and ban rates). This means that heroes with high win rates can be set in low tier; the opposite may also be true.

Situational picks shine on specific maps or as part of specific team compositions.

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Uncommon Patron

Why isn't Azmodan a meta pick ? He is almost always banned alongside Mal'ganis, has waveclear, burst,hp, a targeted ability that deals 620dmg and has low cooldown, range, skillshot blocking minions. All those should qualify him for meta.

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It's so weird to see "Tvin Blyat" Varian as a Top Tier.

On a side note, do you plan on updating the format after we get the updated roles in 2019?

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3 hours ago, XeaKon said:

Why isn't Azmodan a meta pick ? He is almost always banned alongside Mal'ganis, has waveclear, burst,hp, a targeted ability that deals 620dmg and has low cooldown, range, skillshot blocking minions. All those should qualify him for meta.

I think the Azmodan bans are a relic. He's nowhere near as good as he was two months ago, but players are generally slow to catch on.

1 hour ago, Valhalen said:

It's so weird to see "Tvin Blyat" Varian as a Top Tier.

On a side note, do you plan on updating the format after we get the updated roles in 2019?

I keep questioning it myself, but every time I play it, it's insane. His winrates are among the highest as well. I think people see a Varian pick, expect a tank, and get surprised.

I won't update the format because my format has certain advantages. Notably, it deals with edge cases such as Genji and Tracer, who play like melee assassins, yet are labeled as ranged by the game.

  • Thanks 2

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Im kinda surprised to see Mal'Ganis listed as a tank when I thought the general consensus on him was that he's a bruiser and not necessarily main tank material. I happen to disagree with that and think he can play that role but the consensus I thought was bruiser rather than tank

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Uncommon Patron
11 minutes ago, mada7 said:

Im kinda surprised to see Mal'Ganis listed as a tank when I thought the general consensus on him was that he's a bruiser and not necessarily main tank material. I happen to disagree with that and think he can play that role but the consensus I thought was bruiser rather than tank

He has everything a tank needs and more. He is usually played as a bruiser because he also deals a lot of dmg for how much beating he can take and he also doesn't need to be concerned about peeling for his teamates.

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Hoping Kerrigan stays mid so she can avoid any further nerfs; I think she feels great right now and while she isnt much more flexible than she was pre-rework she has enough diversity to help her fit in more comps.  

Overall I like this list and love where the meta is at in general, though I think Mal'Ganis is still pretty stupid.  And I've decided TB Varian is a dumpster fire regardless of where he's placed.

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On 11/8/2018 at 9:11 PM, Unpronounceable said:

Is there any particular reason Tyrande is still listed as a Support as opposed to a healer?

Yes... a mistake.

  • Like 1

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Az is still first ban material on most maps.  Not on BOE, but on maps like shrine, Braxis and Tomb, he can get MAD stacks.  I only play him on those 3 (when he isn't banned) and I am almost always top hero damage (along with top siege).   Usually around 6-2 kill to death as well.  He is oppressive late game.  Certainly more so than KT, which is only OP if you spread living bomb around like crazy.

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Azmo is a monster literally... I play bad hots, i think but when i take azmodan until the mvp is too easy... i never undestood why the professionals dont use it more often if a noob plays very well with him, a professional would win the hgc

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On 11/15/2018 at 11:15 AM, Nano said:

Azmo is a monster literally... I play bad hots, i think but when i take azmodan until the mvp is too easy... i never undestood why the professionals dont use it more often if a noob plays very well with him, a professional would win the hgc

Because it does not quite work that way. Many things in the nature of Azmodan - both his Q and E at least, as well as his Trait - get exponentially more value the worse your opponents are, and his trait also becomes stronger the worse your teammates are.

At HGC-level of play people will dodge that stuff or not even be grouped up enough for a Q to hit more than one person. In Bronze and Silver, they will cluster up with 4 people right in the middle of that circle and give you stacks within ten minutes 😛 

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So basically tier lists are dead now?
I always quite enjoyed to see how other people rank certain heroes and what builds they take/prefer. 
Although i have my own experience i sometimes use this list to look at heroes i dont have experience with, or when i took a break from this game.

i hope the Tier lists gets updated soon, and regularly 

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      Chen

      Base Keg Smash [W] Brew cost increased from 20 to 30 New functionality: Smash Chen's keg, dealing damage, drenching affected enemies in Brew for 3 seconds, and Slowing them by 10% for 1.5 seconds. After 1.5 seconds, the Slow is increased to 40% for 1.5 seconds. After being used, this ability becomes Breath of Fire. Breath of Fire [W] This ability has been moved to the W button, and is available after Keg Smash has been used Cooldown reduced from 5 seconds to 1.5 seconds Impact damage reduced from 96 to 85 Periodic damage increased from 32 to 55 Brew cost reduced from 30 to 10 Adjusted functionality: Using Breath of Fire on Brew-soaked enemy causes them to be Ignited, dealing damage over 3 seconds and adding 1.5 seconds to the duration of the Slow from Keg Smash. After being used or after 6 seconds, this ability becomes Keg Smash New Ability: Stagger [E] Damage taken over the next 3 seconds is prevented. Once this effect ends, Chen receives 75% of the damage taken over 5 seconds. 18-second CD Fortifying Brew [Trait] No longer grants 25 Brew instantly Brew regeneration increased from 30 to 50 per second Cooldown increased from 5 to 7 seconds Channel time reduced from 5 to 4 seconds Shield amount decreased from 196 to 180 per second This reduces the total shields for fully drinking from 588 to 540 Shield duration increased from 2 to 4 seconds Talents
      Level 1 Stormstout Secret Recipe [Passive] Moved from Level 20 Healing increased from 1.5% to 2% of Chen’s maximum health New Talent: Eye of the Tiger [Passive] Adjusted functionality - Quest: Increase Regeneration Globe Healing duration by 100%. Reward: After collecting 15 Regeneration Globes, 50% of the Shield from Fortifying Brew persists indefinitely after drinking Level 4 Keg Toss [W] Removed Withering Flames [W] Moved from Level 13 Duration increased from 3 to 4 seconds Accumulating Flame [W] Moved from Level 1 New functionality: Increase Ignited damage by 25% and Basic Attacks against enemy Heroes who are Ignited increase its duration by .75 seconds Level 7 Bolder Flavor [Trait] Removed Elusive Brawler [Active] Moved from Level 1 Additional functionality: While active, also grants Chen 30% Movement Speed New Talent: Gift of the Ox [E] Increase Stagger’s duration by .5 seconds, and reduce the amount of damage taken over time to 60% of damage taken Level 10 Wandering Keg [R1] Movement speed bonus increased from 60% to 70% Knockback duration increased by ~28% Knockback speed increased by ~53% Storm, Earth, Fire [R2] Spirit Health reduced from 75% of Chen's Health to 70% Each ability can only be cast once. The final ability that is cast is empowered. Storm [Q] New functionality: The spirits gain a shield for 400 over 3 seconds. If this is the final ability cast, the shield amount is increased to 750 with no limited duration, and the duration of Storm Earth Fire is increased by 5 seconds. Earth [W] New functionality: Fire and Earth leap to the target location, dealing 32 damage and slowing enemies in a large area by 70% for 1.5 seconds. If this is the final ability cast, increase the damage dealt by 300% and the leap instead roots enemy Heroes hit for 1.75 seconds. Earth Ability range increased from 7 to 9 Earth Unit basic attack Slow reduced from 2 seconds to 1.75 seconds Earth Unit attack period increased from 2 to 1.5 Fire [E] New functionality: Increase the attack speed and attack damage of the spirits by 50% for 5 seconds. If this is the final ability cast, increase the attack speed and attack damage bonus to 75% and the spirits gain 50% movement speed for its duration Level 13 Ring of Fire [W] Moved from Level 4 Adjusted functionality: After Igniting an enemy, burst into flames, dealing damage to nearby enemies Duration increased from 3 to 5 seconds Damage increased from 52 to 60 Enough to Share [Trait] Moved from Level 16 Additional functionality: Duration increased from 2 to 4 seconds Allied Shield amount increased from 27 to 70 Additional functionality: Now also instantly Shields Chen for 180 Pressure Point [Q] Adjusted functionality: Flying Kick Slows the target enemy for 35% for 1 second, or by 70% if Chen has Shields from Fortifying Brew A Touch of Honey [W] New functionality: Increase the Slow from Keg Smash by 10% and its duration by .5 seconds Level 16 Another Round [W] Removed New Talent: Celerity [E] Basic Attacks against Slowed, Rooted, or Stunned enemy Heroes reduce the cooldown of Stagger by 1.5 seconds and grant Chen 15 Armor for 3 seconds New Talent: Combo Strikes [Trait] Every 3rd Basic Attack against the same target deals 75% bonus damage. While Chen has Shields from Fortifying Brew and for 2 seconds after, he gains 50% Attack Speed Flying Leap [Q] Additional Functionality: Reduce the cooldown of Flying Leap by .5 seconds each time an enemy Hero takes damage from being Ignited Level 20 Purifying Brew [Trait] Moved from Level 7 New functionality: Casting Fortifying Brew grants Chen Unstoppable for 1.5 seconds New Talent: Energizing Brew [Trait] If Chen fully completes his cast of Fortifying Brew, then he gains 20% maximum Health and 20% increased damage for 25 seconds Untapped Potential [R1] Armor bonus increased from 60 to 75 Armor bonus now lasts for 3 seconds after Wandering Keg expires Movement Speed increased from 100% to 125% Elemental Conduit [R2] New functionality: Increase the spirits’ Health to 100% of Chen’s maximum Health and all of their abilities are empowered Developer Comment: The new Chen has finally arrived! We had a blast tinkering with him, and look forward to seeing him unleashed to his full potential in your hands. When taking a look at how to best change him, we primarily focused on adding more opportunities for Chen to make plays and for his opponents to interact with him. Some of his power has been taken out of Fortifying Brew and put into his new ability, Stagger, as well as into his talents. While he may take a bit of time to master, proper management of Chen’s cooldowns should result in a formidable hero that will make a great addition to any team.
      Bug Fixes
      General
      Heroes, Abilities, & Talents
      FIXED: Tassadar displays the 'Support' role icon, and is not selected as a valid healer pick when both sides are given a Healer in Shuffle Pick. FIXED: Mercenary Camp captures will show Score Credit Tracking to always match the amount of experience that is being awarded.  FIXED: Minions on Tomb of the Spider Queen no longer gain an extra minute of scaling at the start of the game. FIXED: Players will get credit for capturing a Mercenary Camp if you are within an extra 5 radius of the capture point (and on the same team) FIXED: TargetUnit Abilities that can be placed on allies no longer appear invisible to enemy Heroes hit by their area. FIXED: Respec on Try Me Mode map now respawns the player Hero to properly reset all Talents and Quests that Hero had chosen. Jaina: Jaina's Water Elemental mimic damage from Wintermute now correctly reflects the tooltip and Balance Update. 50% of Jaina's Basic Frostbolt and Cone of Cold damage is mimicked by the Water Elemental. D.Va: D.Va's Mech is no longer immune to friendly abilities. Chromie: Here and There no longer requires Chromie to have vision of her target location, or the clone she is swapping with.  Sylvanas: Minions who are Possessed now properly remove all friendly damaging abilities that were applied before they were Possessed.  Raynor: Raynor's Hyperion Splat now properly matches both its warning splat and its targeting guide. Anub’arak: Cocoon is no longer disjointed by teleports. Cocoon will now redirect, similarly to pyroblast, and fall off if the teleport is far enough away. The long-awaited Chen rework is here with a new MechaStorm II event coming to the Nexus next week.
    • By Stan
      This week's free Hero rotation includes Ana, D.Va, Hanzo, Leoric, and Medivh.
      Free-to-Play Hero Rotation: June 18, 2019
      Raynor Muradin Sonya Nazeebo Uther Jaina Zeratul Ana Tyrael Brightwing D.Va (Slot unlocked at Player Level 5) Hanzo (Slot unlocked at Player Level 10) Leoric (Slot unlocked at Player Level 15) Medivh (Slot unlocked at Player Level 20) (Source)
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