Diablo Abilities and Strategy

Last updated on Feb 11, 2024 at 16:37 by Elitesparkle 48 comments
General Information

Welcome to our Abilities page for Diablo. Here, we give you an overview of every ability in Diablo's kit. For each of them, we explain what it does, how to best use it, and how it works in combination with Diablo's other abilities. We also give you strategy tips to play Diablo efficiently.


Diablo's Tips and Tricks

  • Play less aggressively right after reviving through Black Soulstone Icon Black Soulstone because you will not have 30% bonus maximum Health anymore.
  • Fire Stomp Icon Fire Stomp can hit any given target up to five times in melee range.
  • Use Overpower Icon Overpower right after Shadow Charge Icon Shadow Charge to unconditionally move opponents towards your teammates.
  • Cast Lightning Breath Icon Lightning Breath when you suspect you may be the target of a crowd control chain, as it makes you Unstoppable for the duration.
  • Use Apocalypse Icon Apocalypse right before Shadow Charge and Overpower to unconditionally Stun your target.

Shadow Charge

Diablo Shadow Charge
Shadow Charge (Q) Diablo Diablo
  • Mana: 65
  • Cooldown: 12 seconds

Charge an enemy, knocking them back, dealing 40 (+4% per level) damage and gaining 15% Movement Speed for 2 seconds. If the enemy hits terrain, they are Stunned for 1 second and take an additional 130 (+4% per level) damage.

Shadow Charge is Diablo's main initiation Ability. Although its bonus Stun condition may initially seem appealing, the Ability's erratic knockback distance makes it difficult to reliably benefit from this effect. It is indeed much more commonplace to use Shadow Charge as a gap closer that perfectly chains into Overpower Icon Overpower to unconditionally displace an important target where your team may attack them.

Alternatively, it can be used as a follow up for Overpower, so as to shove opponents towards your teammates or away from their own. Since the Ability's cooldown is so lengthy and its damage so inconsequential, Shadow Charge should almost exclusively be used in the presence of allies, or when trying to finish an opponent off. As a last resort, Shadow Charge may also be used against a far-away hostile target—typically Minions or Summons—to create some space between yourself and an opponent in escape situations.

Shadow Charge is notable for its ability to unconditionally interrupt channeled Abilities from a long range. Strong Heroic Abilities, such as Jug of 1,000 Cups Icon Jug of 1,000 Cups or Ravenous Spirit Icon Ravenous Spirit, are especially valuable to shut down. This, however, often comes at the cost of potentially putting you into an undesirable forward position, upon which your opponents may capitalise to attack you.

As with most displacement effects, you must be mindful of not actually helping your opponents by accidentally moving them to safety, such as behind their own Gates, or out of friendly area of effect effects. You can use Shadow Charge yourself to escape through terrain and units, as long as you have vision of an enemy target where you wish to travel.


Fire Stomp

Diablo Fire Stomp
Fire Stomp (W) Diablo Diablo
  • Mana: 35
  • Cooldown: 8 seconds

Unleashes fire waves toward the targeted area that deal 12 (+4% per level) damage each. Once they reach maximum range they return, dealing an additional 36 (+4% per level) damage. Diablo heals for 130% of the damage dealt to Heroes.

Fire Stomp's main purpose is to provide Diablo with self sustain a bit of area of effect damage. Although it has a very short cast time, it is typically used on-cooldown whenever there is a need to deal damage, such as while waveclearing. Since the projectiles generated by the Ability have a relatively long range, they can be used to scout bushes or try to reveal Stealthed Heroes. Fire Stomp is also useful in a pinch to finish off escaping opponents that have a sliver of Health remaining.

One of Fire Stomp's intricacies lies in its cone shape, requiring good aim and correct timing when paired with other Basic Abilities. Each of the Ability's five projectiles can hit any single target, allowing you to quintuple its damage and healing by positioning properly. Due to the cone-like spread of the projectiles, achieving multiple hits is only possible against targets who are in melee range; the same is true for returning projectiles. Each projectile also pierces, meaning multiple targets can be hit as well. Maximising Fire Stomp's effect then comes down to hitting as many targets as possible or, sometimes, hitting the same target multiple times. During team fights, this more or less means aiming in the general direction multiple enemy Heroes, except when you do not have that option. In dueling situations, both Shadow Charge Icon Shadow Charge and Overpower Icon Overpower may be used to reposition your intended target or yourself to secure hits for the returning projectiles, which deal three times as much damage.



Diablo Overpower
Overpower (E) Diablo Diablo
  • Mana: 35
  • Cooldown: 12 seconds

Grabs the target and slams it behind Diablo, dealing 73 (+4% per level) damage and Stunning for 0.25 seconds.

Overpower is what makes Diablo so threatening in melee. Whenever you find yourself within Overpower range of an opponent, its use should become natural, so long as you have allies near you to capitalise on the displacement effect. An often overlooked aspect of the Ability is that it puts you in a perfect position to perform a body block maneuver. Otherwise, Overpower synergises so well with Shadow Charge Icon Shadow Charge that they are systematically used one right after the other.

Just as with Shadow Charge, when displacing enemy Heroes, be mindful of not actually helping your opponents by accidentally moving them to safety or away from your allies. Overpower deals a dismal amount of damage and should almost exclusively be used if the effect is going to be useful, allow you to get several Basic Attacks off, or to interrupt a channeled Ability with its daze component.

In the early game, Overpower can be used to slam an unweary foe behind your own Gate. This is often enough to outright seal the fate of most Heroes.



In this section we discuss how this Heroic Ability works and give some tips on how to use it. If you are looking for a detailed explanation on when and why you should pick it, check the dedicated section in the Talent Build page.

Diablo Apocalypse
Apocalypse (R) Diablo Diablo
  • Heroic
  • Mana: 50
  • Cooldown: 90 seconds

Create a demonic rune under each enemy Hero on the battleground. After 1.75 seconds the rune explodes dealing 137 (+4% per level) damage and Stunning them for 1.75 seconds.

Apocalypse's lengthy Stun effect, respectable damage, and large area of effect make it one of the strongest follow up crowd control Abilities in the game, however, since it has a long delay, it should only be used in combination with other crowd control effects.

The single-target combo relies on your Basic Abilities. You should cast Apocalypse Icon Apocalypse while the desired target is in range for Shadow Charge Icon Shadow Charge, quickly cast Shadow Charge Icon Shadow Charge, and then immediately queue up Overpower Icon Overpower by using the Queue Command Modifier [Shift].

The multiple target combo relies on your team's Heroic Abilities. You should cast Apocalypse Icon Apocalypse when they cannot dodge it due to crowd control effects preventing their movements (for example Ley Line Seal Icon Ley Line Seal by Medivh).

Apocalypse Icon Apocalypse's runes do not spawn below Heroes removed from the battlefield by Stasis effects that affect enemy Heroes (for example Devouring Maw Icon Devouring Maw by Zagara).


Lightning Breath

In this section we discuss how this Heroic Ability works and give some tips on how to use it. If you are looking for a detailed explanation on when and why you should pick it, check the dedicated section in the Talent Build page.

Diablo Lightning Breath
Lightning Breath (R) Diablo Diablo
  • Heroic
  • Mana: 80
  • Cooldown: 90 seconds

After 0.5 seconds, become Unstoppable and Channel for up to 4 seconds, dealing 50 (+4% per level) damage every 0.25 seconds to enemies in front of Diablo. Enemies affected are Slowed by 4% for 2 seconds, up to 40%.

Lightning Breath's direction changes with your mouse cursor position.

Lightning Breath is one of the most damaging Abilities in the game, however, it has the downside of being a stationary channel, so Diablo has to stand still while using it and thus be vulnerable to damage. That said, it can be cancelled when you want to move away from danger.

All enemy Heroes hit will be affected by a stacking Slow effect, which makes it progressively harder for them to get out of Lightning Breath Icon Lightning Breath once it connects on them, unless they have mobility tools. There are also some Heroes who deal more damage to Slowed enemy Heroes (for example Fenix with Purification Salvo Icon Purification Salvo).

Despite being an area of effect, you should not hesitate to use Lightning Breath Icon Lightning Breath on a single target and get a kill, usually with the help of your team. The large area it covers will often result in other enemy Heroes being zoned or taking damage, especially when contesting a Capture Point.

Since you cannot move during Lightning Breath Icon Lightning Breath, you should ideally cast it when not having low Health. Also, to increase your survivability, before using Lightning Breath Icon Lightning Breath, you should use Fire Stomp Icon Fire Stomp to debuff enemy Heroes with Debilitating Flames Icon Debilitating Flames at Level 16 and activate Soul Shield Icon Soul Shield at Level 1.

Due to the fact that Diablo is Unstoppable during it, the only status effect that can counter Lightning Breath Icon Lightning Breath is Time Stop (notably Containment Disc Icon Containment Disc by Maiev).


Black Soulstone

Diablo Black Soulstone
Black Soulstone (D) Diablo Diablo
  • Passive

Repeatable Quest: Gain 10 Souls per Hero killed and 1 Soul per Minion, up to 100. For each Soul, gain 0.3% maximum Health. If Diablo has 100 Souls upon dying, he will resurrect in 5 seconds but lose 100 Souls.

After reaching level 10, Diablo only consumes 75 Souls when resurrecting.

Black Soulstone is a Trait which increases Diablo's maximum Health for each Souls collected. To collect Souls, Diablo has to be nearby enemy Minions when they die or to help his team to kill an enemy Hero. When dying with 100 Souls, Diablo will consume them all and respawn in the Hall of Storms after 5 seconds. After reaching Level 10, the amount of Souls consumed while respawning via Black Soulstone Icon Black Soulstone is reduced from 100 to 75, meaning you will start from 25 Souls instead.

Considering how Black Soulstone Icon Black Soulstone can heavily change the amount of maximum Health that Diablo has, you generally have to play less aggressively when having less than 50 Souls but can play more aggressively when having close to 100 Souls.

Avoid dying for no reason and thus wasting all your Souls because then you will have lower maximum Health for a while. When this happens, you can use moments when your team does not really need your help to collect a bunch of Souls from Minions, but do not leave them without Tank for too long.



  • 11 Feb. 2024: Explanation for Heroic Abilities improved.
  • 03 Feb. 2022: Guide reviewed for the latest Balance Update.
  • 10 Sep. 2021: New layout.
  • 20 May 2021: Builds updated.
  • 15 Oct. 2019: Abilities section reviewed.
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