Welcome to our Talents page for Chen. Here, we give you an overview of how strong each of Chen's talents is. Then, we present several viable builds, before analyzing each talent row separately, so that you can make informed decisions.
Chen's Talent Build
|1||✔ ✔ ✘|
|4||✔ ✔ ?|
|7||✔ ✔ ✔|
|13||? ✘ ✔ ✔|
|16||? ✔ ✔|
|20||✘ ✔ ? ✔|
Chen's Talent Build Cheatsheet
Aggressive BuildTalent calculator »
The Aggressive Build focuses on Chen becoming a dangerous damage dealer that wreaks havoc in the enemy team's backline. It is important to notice that we recommend playing Chen in a solo lane, since that is where he can put his great duelling skills to best use. At Level 1, Eye of the Tiger is the only option to help amplify Chen's damage output. At Level 4, there are two options to choose from. Accumulating Flame increases Chen's AoE damage and, consequently, his waveclear potential as well. To help Chen in lane against another strong duelist or if you value single target damage more, Deadly Strike is the way to go. At Level 7, we like both Elusive Brawler and Brewmaster's Balance but tend to prefer the former, as it comes with a relatively short cooldown and also provides Chen with additional mobility and strong evasion.
At Level 10, Storm, Earth, Fire is our standard choice to maximize Chen's damage, however, Wandering Keg remains a valid option, especially if the enemy team features several Assassins that can be isolated and pushed into your team's ranks. During Level 13 and 16 Chen can decide to go for additional burst damage by picking Ring of Fire and Combo Strikes. Alternatively, he can opt for more mobility and utility by focussing on Pressure Point and Flying Leap. At Level 20, Elemental Conduit is a must-have if you went Storm, Earth, Fire at Level 10. Otherwise, we recommend Purifying Brew to help fight Chen's weakness against Stuns and Silences.
Defensive BuildTalent calculator »
The Defensive Build prioritizes Chen's survivability on the battlefield over raw damage output. However, even with a more defensive build, Chen can still be a thorn in the enemy team's side. At Level 1, we usually recommend Freshest Ingredients, as it boosts Chen's tankiness over time and also synergizes well—after completion—with Fortifying Brew-dependent talents, such as Deadly Strike at Level 4. Still, Eye of the Tiger is so solid as a talent, that it can also be picked. At Level 4, Accumulating Flame can be a viable option, especially if additional waveclear is required. At Level 7, the enemy team's main damage source needs to be analyzed. If they focus on Basic Attacks, Elusive Brawler is great. If they have a mix of Basic Attacks and Spell (Burst) Damage, Gift of the Ox is a worthwhile investment.
At Level 10, Wandering Keg is our standard choice to maximize Chen's survivability and pick potential, however, Storm, Earth, Fire remains a valid option, especially if your team requires additional damage during team fights or if the enemy team is too tanky/mobile for Wandering Keg to get any value from. At Level 13, Enough to Share offers increased self-protection while also shielding nearby allies—a great talent for a more defensive playstyle. For the late game, Celerity's cooldown reduction at Level 16 possesses wonderful synergy with Gift of the Ox at Level 7. At Level 20, Purifying Brew can be a strong choice against heavy crowd control on the enemy team's side, while Elemental Conduit, if Storm, Earth, Fire was taken at Level 10, can add some potentially needed extra damage. However, we usually think that Energizing Brew works best with this build, as it will add outstanding amounts of extra tankiness and damage to Chen's kit.
Level 1 Talents for Chen
Basic Attacks against Brew-soaked enemy Heroes deal 40% more damage and heal Chen for 40% of the damage done.
Increase the healing duration of Regeneration Globes by 100%.
Quest: Gather 15 Regeneration Globes.
Reward: Reduce Fortifying Brew's cooldown by 1 second, and 50% of its Shield persists indefinitely after drinking.
Chen heals for 3% of his maximum Health when his Basic Abilities hit an enemy Hero.
Eye of the Tiger is a very strong talent if Chen manages to consistently get Basic Attacks in on Brew-soaked enemies. The talent provides a solid damage increase over the course of the game.
Stormstout Secret Recipe offers too little healing and is too dependent on Chen hitting several enemy Heroes to make it a worthwhile investment.
Level 4 Talents for Chen
Flying Kick no longer costs Brew. Additionally, its damage is increased by 100% while Chen has Shields from Fortifying Brew.
Increase Ignited damage by 20%. Basic Attacks against enemy Heroes who are Ignited increase its duration by 0.75 seconds.
Igniting an enemy Hero reduces their Spell Power by 50% for 4 seconds.
Deadly Strike is a decent talent, as it removes any Brew cost from Flying Kick. This allows Chen, especially in the later game with talents like Pressure Point and Flying Leap, to chase targets without interrupting himself in order to refill his brew. The increased damage while his Shields are still up, is a nice extra to have and should be active quite frequently if Freshest Ingredients was picked at Level 1.
Withering Flames can be a relevant talent if the enemy team composition features several ability heavy Assassins, such as Kael'thas or Cho'gall. In most games, however, Accumulating Flame and Deadly Strike will add more to Chen's combat performance.
Level 7 Talents for Chen
Increase the duration of Stagger's damage prevention by 1 second, and reduce the amount of damage taken over time to 60% of damage taken.
While at or below 50 Brew, gain 20% Movement Speed. While at or above 50 Brew, regenerate an additional 18 (+4% per level) Health per second.
- Cooldown: 25 seconds
Activate to gain 30% Movement Speed and Evade enemy Basic Attacks for 2 seconds. Chen's Basic Attacks reduce this cooldown by 2 seconds.
Elusive Brawler is an amazing talent if the enemy team composition relies on Basic Attacks. Make sure to consistently use your own Basic Attacks (when it is safe to do so) in order to keep this talent on a low cooldown. Keep in mind that Elusive Brawler also allows you to dodge Tower and Fort shots.
Brewmaster's Balance is one of the most versatile talents in the game, since it provides two effects depending on your Brew count. If used correctly, Brewmaster's Balance's movement speed bonus, while below 50 Brew, allows Chen to escape dangerous situations or to chase down retreating enemies very efficiently.
Level 10 Talents for Chen
- Cooldown: 60 seconds
Roll around inside an Unstoppable barrel with 70% increased Movement Speed and 25 Armor, dealing 59 (+4% per level) damage to enemies in the way and knocking them back. Lasts for 5 seconds.
- Cooldown: 120 seconds
After 1 second, Chen splits into three elemental spirits for 12 seconds, each with 70% of Chen's maximum Health and a unique Ability. The last spirit Ability that is cast is empowered. If all three spirits are killed, Chen will die as well.
Storm can grant the spirits a Shield.
Earth can leap to an area and Slow enemies.
Fire can grant the spirits Attack Speed, damage.
At this level, Heroic Abilities become available, both of which have already been described in the Abilities section.
Storm, Earth, Fire is a very versatile Heroic Ability that can be used both offensively and defensively. If used offensively, the Elemental Spirits are a great tool to body block retreating targets. If used defensively, Storm, Earth, Fire offers an incredible amount of mobility, as it allows Chen to leap across the battlefield.
However, the biggest strength of Storm, Earth, Fire is the fact that provides Chen with a second health pool, which makes him one of the most durable Heroes in the game. All in all, it is a very safe and reliable Heroic Ability that we recommend to less experienced Chen players in particular.
Wandering Keg is a high-risk high-reward ability that has the potential to break the enemy team's formation and wreak havoc within their lines. However, its biggest drawback is the difficulty of controlling Chen while he is inside the barrel. Knocking enemy Heroes back to a certain direction feels very clunky, which causes especially newer players to harm their team more than to actually help them. If you are an experienced Chen player who has practiced using this ability, you will be able to achieve great results, ideally isolating a single enemy target and pushing them towards your own team.
Level 13 Talents for Chen
Flying Kick Slows the target enemy by 35% for 1 second, or by 70% if Chen has Shields from Fortifying Brew.
Increase the Slows from Keg Smash by 15% and its duration by 0.5 seconds.
After Igniting an enemy, become bathed in a fiery aura, dealing 55 (+4% per level) damage every second to nearby enemies for 5 seconds.
Fortifying Brew instantly grants Chen a Shield that absorbs 180 (+4% per level) damage, and each second grants nearby allied Heroes a Shield that absorbs 140 (+4% per level) damage, up to 420 (+4% per level).
Ring of Fire is not a bad talent per se, as it offers decent damage over time to enemies near Chen. On certain maps like Infernal Shrines or Tomb of the Spider Queen, where waveclear is of the essence, we can recommend picking up this talent.
Pressure Point turns Flying Kick into a strong crowd control ability. After picking Pressure Point, he becomes a very dangerous Bruiser, who is capable of chasing enemy Heroes by constantly slowing them with Pressure Point and his Keg Smash ability.
A Touch of Honey is an underwhelming talent. We find the additional Movement Speed slow it provides to be too weak to make it a relevant choice.
Level 16 Talents for Chen
Increase Flying Kick's range by 15% and reduce its cooldown by 0.5 seconds each time an enemy Hero takes damage from being Ignited.
Basic Attacks against Stunned, Rooted, or Slowed enemy Heroes reduce the cooldown of Stagger by 1.5 seconds and grant Chen 30 Armor for 3 seconds.
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 35% Attack Speed.
Combo Strikes has some good synergy with Freshest Ingredients, once the latter has been completely stacked to provide consistent permanent shielding. But even without it, the talent's bonus damage is strong enough to make it a strong choice.
Flying Leap is an aggressive talent choice that we recommend if you went for Pressure Point at Level 13. Flying Leap allows Chen to chase his targets even more efficiently, while it also enables him to escape enemies more easily by jumping to an enemy Minion, Structure, or Hero in the opposite direction.
Level 20 Talents for Chen
Increase Wandering Keg's Movement Speed bonus from 70% to 125%, and its Armor bonus to 75 for its duration and 3 seconds afterwards.
Increase the spirits' Health to 100% of Chen's maximum Health and all of their Abilities are empowered.
Casting Fortifying Brew grants Chen Unstoppable for 1.5 seconds.
If Chen Channels Fortifying Brew for its full duration, then he gains 20% bonus Health and 20% bonus damage for 25 seconds.
Elemental Conduit provides more health to each Elemental Spirit, which is crucial, since Chen dies once all Spirits have been killed. The empowered abilities on all three Spirits furthermore boost Chen's late game killing potential, making it an incredibly useful talent.
Energizing Brew comes with incredibly strong bonus stats but also one major requirement that needs to be fulfilled in order to unlock them. Channeling Fortifying Brew for its full duration not only requires clever timing (using it either too early or too late can cause Chen to lose some of its value) but also a relatively low number of enemy interrupts, such as Stuns or Silences. If the talent works, however, it does so very well. It is strong enough to be a recommended choice.
- 12 Jul. 2019: Revised the guide and found it was still on par with the latest Balance Update.
- 17 Jun. 2019: Completely overhauled and updated Chen's talents and builds in accordance with the recent Hero Rework.
- 07 Jun. 2019: Updated Chen's talents and builds.
- 22 Sep. 2017: Updated Chen's talents in accordance to the latest balance update.
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