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Sonya Build Guide “Time to die!”

Last updated on Jan 14, 2018 at 21:23 by Oxygen 34 comments

Table of Contents

Sonya Image

General Information

Welcome to our Sonya guide for Heroes of the Storm. Here you will learn everything you need to know in order to play Sonya in a competitive environment, whether you play on your own or with a team.

About the Author

Oxygen is a veteran of the MOBA genre, which he has been playing for nearly 15 years. He has coached some of Heroes of the Storm's most prominent North American players and teams alike, including Team Liquid. As a Master player, he enjoys playing all Heroes and roles.

1. Quick Reference

Burst Build (talent calculator link)

Level 1 War Paint Icon Block Icon ?
Level 4 Focused Attack Icon
Level 7 Poisoned Spear Icon
Level 10 Leap Icon
Level 13 Mystical Spear Icon Spell Shield Icon ?
Level 16 Nerves of Steel Icon
Level 20 Ignore Pain Icon

This Burst Build seeks to take advantage of Leap Icon Leap's extremely reliable area of effect crowd control and gap closing effect. Key Talents include Focused Attack Icon Focused Attack and Poisoned Spear Icon Poisoned Spear, which add to Sonya's ability to inflict burst damage after using Leap. This build is particularly useful when used in a burst team composition, which simply seeks to single out and destroy a specific high-value target.

Whirlwind Build (talent calculator link)

Level 1 Block Icon War Paint Icon ?
Level 4 Hurricane Icon
Level 7 Poisoned Spear Icon Follow Through Icon ? Ferocious Healing Icon ?
Level 10 Wrath of the Berserker Icon
Level 13 Life Funnel Icon Mystical Spear Icon ? Spell Shield Icon ?
Level 16 Nerves of Steel Icon
Level 20 Ignore Pain Icon

The Whirlwind Icon Whirlwind Build seeks to improve the Ability after which it is named. Its goal is to maximize Sonya's self sustain in combat. Key Talents include Hurricane Icon Hurricane, which reduces the Cooldown of Whirlwind, Wrath of the Berserker Icon Wrath of the Berserker, which greatly improves Sonya's damage output and self-healing, and Life Funnel Icon Life Funnel, which further improves the healing provided by Whirlwind. The goal of the build is essentially to hit as many Heroes as possible with Whirlwind, all while Wrath of the Berserker is active.

See our Talents page for further information Create your own build and share it with friends!

Synergies and Counters

Sonya synergizes with

For Sonya, survival means damage, and damage means survival. As such, she works well with any Hero that can provide her with Shielding effects, added mobility, or reliable crowd control.

Sonya is countered by

Sonya's reliance upon Whirlwind Icon Whirlwind to survive in team fights makes her particularly vulnerable to targeted crowd control. Furthermore, her melee nature makes her relatively easy to kite, and especially when Ancient Spear Icon Ancient Spear is on Cooldown.


Sonya's stronger maps Battlefield of Eternity Blackheart's Bay Cursed Hollow Garden of Terror Infernal Shrines
Sonya's average maps Dragon Shire Hanamura Haunted Mines Sky Temple Tomb of the Spider Queen Towers of Doom Volskaya Foundry Warhead Junction
Sonya's weaker maps Braxis Holdout

As a strong solo laner who is also able to clear Mercenary Camps with ease, Sonya can find a place on all Maps. She is, however, particularly effective on those Maps that feature several Mercenary Camps, such as Blackheart's Bay, Cursed Hollow, and Garden of Terror.

TL;DR Tips

  • As Fury Icon Fury does not decay over time, try and keep it full before impending engagements.
  • Ancient Spear Icon Ancient Spear is Sonya's most important Ability; avoid wasting it unless you are sure you can land it.
  • Use Whirlwind Icon Whirlwind to trigger Fury Icon Fury's movement speed when chasing foes down to keep up with them.
  • Try and constantly keep on attacking while under the effects of Wrath of the Berserker Icon Wrath of the Berserker to maintain its effects for as long as possible.
See our Abilities page for further information

2. Introduction

Sonya is an aggressive Warrior that uses an alternate resource called Fury Icon Fury. Her defining elements are her immense single-target damage output and self sustain. Since the majority of her Abilities have a very short range, Sonya players are reliant on their aptitude to position themselves properly so as to be able to both deal damage and survive.

3. Strengths

  • One of the highest single-target damage output potential in the game
  • Extremely strong duelist
  • Great self-sustain through Whirlwind Icon Whirlwind
  • May quickly and safely solo claim any Mercenary Camp, including Bosses

4. Weaknesses

  • Susceptible to being kited
  • No options to deal damage from range
  • Excessively reliant on hitting her Ancient Spear Icon Ancient Spear Ability

5. Role in the Current Meta

Although officially classified as a Warrior, Sonya's playstyle is much more reminiscent of that of an Assassin (or more specifically, that of a bruiser); her high damage output is offset by a limited access to crowd control, reliable early-game initiation, and defensive Abilities. Consequently, players should strongly consider drafting her with the mindset that she fills the role of a melee Assassin, and bring along at least one other Hero that is capable of fulfilling the expected functions of a tank.

In general, she tends to do well against team compositions that feature multiple melee Heroes, such as dive-oriented compositions, where opponents actually have to come to her or her allies to perform well. This gives Sonya players the opportunity to attack without having to constantly chase after key targets, greatly improving her effectiveness. She is also an appropriate pick on Maps that feature several Mercenary Camps, such as Blackheart's Bay, Cursed Hollow, or Garden of Terror.

6. Reading Further

To take things further, we have 2 more pages that you can read:

7. ChangeLog

+ show all entries - show only 10 entries
  • 14 Jan. 2018 (talents page): Updated Tier 2 and Tier 3 talent discussions. Updated Whirlwind and Burst builds.
  • 29 Aug. 2017 (this page): Guide fully updated and moved to the new format.
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