Varian Build Guide “Glory to the Alliance!”

Last updated on May 05, 2021 at 10:00 by Elitesparkle 44 comments
General Information

Welcome to our guide for Varian, a Bruiser in Heroes of the Storm. Within these pages, you will find everything required to understand how best to play this hero, in both different map styles and team compositions.

1.

Varian's Overview

Varian is a Bruiser who can also be played as Melee Assassin or a Tank depending on his Heroic Ability that can be picked at Level 4 rather than Level 10 like other Heroes.

2.

Varian's Strengths and Weaknesses

V Strengths
X Weaknesses
3.

Varian's Talent Build Cheatsheet

Heroic Strike Taunt Build

Recommended
Level 1 Overpower Icon
Level 4 Taunt Icon
Level 7 Victory Rush Icon
Level 10 Warbringer Icon Shield Wall Icon ?
Level 13 Mortal Strike Icon Shattering Throw Icon ?
Level 16 Banner of Dalaran Icon
Level 20 Glory to the Alliance Icon

Heroic Strike Taunt Build turns Varian into a Tank who is capable of engaging and/or peeling for his team.

In particular, this variation of Taunt Build helps you burst down a given target with the help of Overpower Icon Overpower at Level 1 and by denying defensive tools with either Mortal Strike Icon Mortal Strike or Shattering Throw Icon Shattering Throw at Level 13.

We recommend this Build when your team needs a Tank and your team's strategy consists of bursting down enemy Heroes.

Lion's Fang Taunt Build

Beginner
Level 1 Lion's Maw Icon
Level 4 Taunt Icon
Level 7 Lionheart Icon
Level 10 Warbringer Icon
Level 13 Juggernaut Icon
Level 16 Banner of Dalaran Icon
Level 20 Glory to the Alliance Icon

Lion's Fang Taunt Build turns Varian into a Tank who is capable of engaging and/or peeling for his team.

In particular, this variation of Taunt Build gives you access to a better Slow from Lion's Maw Icon Lion's Maw at Level 1 and Percent Damage on low cooldown thanks to the combination of Warbringer Icon Warbringer at Level 10 and Juggernaut Icon Juggernaut at Level 13.

You can play this Build when your team needs a Tank and you expect prolonged team fights where your low-cooldown Talents can shine.

Colossus Smash Build

Situational
Level 1 High King's Quest Icon
Level 4 Colossus Smash Icon
Level 7 Second Wind Icon
Level 10 Shield Wall Icon Warbringer Icon ?
Level 13 Mortal Strike Icon Juggernaut Icon ? Shattering Throw Icon ?
Level 16 Banner of Dalaran Icon
Level 20 Glory to the Alliance Icon

Colossus Smash Build turns Varian into a highly explosive Melee Assassin, who excels at bursting down enemy priority targets using Colossus Smash Icon Colossus Smash to engage and exploit the Armor reduction effect to increase not only his own damage, but also the damage of the rest of his team.

You can play this Build only when your team does not need a Tank or a Solo Laner because you will not be tanky enough to act as second frontline Hero.

Twin Blades Build

Situational
Level 1 High King's Quest Icon
Level 4 Twin Blades of Fury Icon
Level 7 Second Wind Icon
Level 10 Warbringer Icon Shield Wall Icon ?
Level 13 Mortal Strike Icon Juggernaut Icon ? Shattering Throw Icon ?
Level 16 Banner of Dalaran Icon
Level 20 Glory to the Alliance Icon

Twin Blades Build turns Varian into a Bruiser thanks to the additional damage that Twin Blades of Fury Icon Twin Blades of Fury provides.

Keep in mind that this Build is only viable when playing as Solo Laner, and not when your team needs a Tank or a second Assassin.

4.

Varian's Synergies and Counters

V Varian synergizes with

Taunt Build synergizes with Heroes who can easily follow up with crowd control (like Malfurion that can easily land a Root just a moment before the Taunt is going to expire) and burst damage (such as Jaina who will be able to get full damage from her Blizzard Icon Blizzard).

Colossus Smash Build works better when your team has crowd control but lacks burst damage to follow up.

Twin Blades Build likes anything which can help Varian to stick on his target, usually something provided by the Tank (for example Johanna that can Slow and Stun enemy Heroes nearby).

X Varian is countered by

Varian, independently from the Build used, is countered by Heroes who are able to kite him due to their range (such as Hanzo who can also use Sonic Arrow Icon Sonic Arrow to deny a flank) and/or Heroes that have tools to drastically compromise his already low mobility (such as Garrosh).

Taunt Build is countered by Heroes who have a tool to remove his Taunt (such as Anduin with Leap of Faith Icon Leap of Faith) and/or that have something to counter the burst damage that will come from his team (like Uther because he provides Armor to allied Heroes via Devotion Icon Devotion).

Colossus Smash Build is countered by Heroes that have something to mitigate the burst damage that will come from him and his team (for example Medivh because Force of Will Icon Force of Will provides Protected, a status effect that has no direct counters).

Twin Blades Build heavily suffers from Heroes that can reduce his Attack Speed, crowd control him, and/or burst him down. Blinds are good against him as well.

5.

Varian's Maps

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

Varian is good on Maps where team fights happen not only at the Objective but also in other locations of the battlefield because he can gain advantage from the fact that his Heroic Abilities have a really short cooldown and weak on Maps where there is only one big team fight at the Objective because the enemy team can play safe the rest of the time.

6.

Varian's Tips and Tricks

  • When playing Taunt Build, remember that Taunt Icon Taunt can be used to interrupt enemy channels (for example to stop Carrion Swarm Icon Carrion Swarm by Mal'Ganis).
  • When going for Colossus Smash Build, always make sure to use Colossus Smash Icon Colossus Smash first and other Abilities after in order to increase all damage dealt thanks to the Armor reduction on the enemy Hero.
  • When choosing Twin Blades, do not go too far from your team so that they can focus the same enemy Hero as you and/or help you to survive.
  • If your team desperately needs a Tank, do not insist on taking Colossus Smash Icon Colossus Smash or Twin Blades of Fury Icon Twin Blades of Fury at Level 4 because a Tank is really important to have in team.
7.

Varian's Role in the Current Meta

Varian can be played as:

While it is quite useful to draft a flexible Hero whose Role is hard to assume for the opponents, you should already know what will be your Heroic Ability during the draft and communicate with your teammates before picking Varian so that they can cover the missing Roles in your team composition.

If you are playing in a Game Mode without draft, however, take a look at your team composition while the game is loading and decide what is the best Heroic Ability to choose. While doing so, remember that the tools offered by a Tank are key elements to have a successful team composition.

8.

Changelog

  • 05 May 2021 (talents page): Taunt Builds' Descriptions improved.
  • 05 May 2021 (this page): Builds updated.
  • 25 Apr. 2021 (talents page): Builds updated.
  • 25 Apr. 2021 (this page): Builds updated.
  • 25 Feb. 2021 (talents page): New layout.
  • 21 Feb. 2021 (talents page): Updated Talent discussions and builds.
  • 15 Feb. 2021 (talents page): Builds updated.
  • 05 Nov. 2020 (talents page): Guide updated for the latest Balance Update.
  • 05 Nov. 2020 (abilities page): Guide reviewed for the latest Balance Update.
  • 05 Nov. 2020 (this page): Guide reviewed for the latest Balance Update.
  • 03 Apr. 2020 (talents page): Talent Build fully revised to match new standards.
    • Talent Build and Talent Build Cheatsheet modified to reflect the current metagame.
    • Talent Descriptions modified to better describe when to pick them.
  • 03 Apr. 2020 (abilities page): Ability and Strategy fully revised to match new standards.
    • Tips and Tricks modified to add important tips that were missing and to remove obvious ones that were not worth mentioning.
    • Ability Descriptions modified to better explain how to use Abilities effectively.
  • 03 Apr. 2020 (this page): Introduction fully revised to match new standards.
    • Overview rewritten to better describe the Hero.
    • Strengths and Weaknesses modified to give a better idea about the Hero when being played right.
    • Talent Build Cheatsheet updated to reflect the current metagame.
    • Synergies and Counters modified to mention notable Heroes that were missing and to remove misleading Heroes that were listed.
    • Maps modified to focus on the main aspects of the Hero when evaluating a Map.
    • Tips and Tricks modified to list important tips that were missing before and to delete more obvious ones.
    • Role in the Current Meta modified to reflect the current metagame and to remove the unnecessary part about the now fixed Experience Globes.
  • 15 Feb. 2020 (this page): Builds updated.
  • 19 Dec. 2019 (talents page): Updated Frenzy's description in accordance with the latest Balance Update.
  • 16 Dec. 2019 (this page): Added the current Anomaly (Experience Globes) to the guide.
  • 16 Oct. 2019 (talents page): Updated Varian's Talents and Builds in accordance with the latest Balance Update.
  • 09 Sep. 2019 (talents page): Updated Varian's Talents and Talent Builds.
  • 09 Sep. 2019 (abilities page): Updated Varian's Abilities page.
  • 09 Sep. 2019 (this page): Updated Varian's Introduction section.
  • 18 Apr. 2019 (talents page): Updated Varian's early Talents and Talent Builds in accordance with the latest Balance Update.
  • 13 Oct. 2018 (talents page): Updated Talent Builds and changed Frenzy from Not Recommended to Situational.
  • 06 Apr. 2018 (talents page): Changed Second Wind from Situational to Recommended.
  • 04 Apr. 2018 (talents page): Changed Warbringer from Situational to Recommended.
  • 28 Mar. 2018 (talents page): Completely overhauled Varian's Builds and Talents in accordance with his recent Rework.
  • 11 Jul. 2017 (talents page): Changed High King's Quest from Situational to Recommended.
  • 03 Jul. 2017 (talents page): Updated Varian's Level 1 Talents.
  • 16 May 2017 (talents page): Updated Warbringer's description.
  • 11 Mar. 2017 (talents page): Updated Varian's talent section to fit the current meta.
  • 28 Feb. 2017 (talents page): Updated Warbringer in accordance with the latest Balance Update.
  • 18 Feb. 2017 (talents page): Re-arranged Varian's Level 13 and 16 talent tiers in accordance with the Lucio Update.
  • 04 Feb. 2017 (talents page): Updated Level 7 talent discussions and assessments.
  • 20 Dec. 2016 (talents page): Updated text for some talent discussions, but assessments remain the same.
  • 20 Dec. 2016 (this page): Adjusted weaknesses.
  • 15 Nov. 2016 (this page): Guide added.
Show more
Show less