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Xul Talents

Last updated on Jul 16, 2017 at 11:22 by Kendric 24 comments

Table of Contents

Xul Image

General Information

On this page, we present the viable talent choices for playing Xul in a competitive environment in Heroes of the Storm. For each talent, we explain what they do and why they should or should not be taken.

The other pages of our Xul guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.

About the Author

KendricSwissh is a Master League Warrior and Support player in Hero League. He has been playing Heroes of the Storm since the early stages of the Alpha version and has mastered a large number of Heroes. He is also creating Heroes of the Storm related content on YouTube, most notably his series called Epic Plays of the Week, which focuses on video clips submitted by his viewers. He is also a streamer on Twitch where he will gladly answer all of your questions about the game.

1. Talent Build

Level Choices
1 Backlash ? Shackler ? Shade ?
4 Reaper's Toll ? Grim Scythe Jailors
7 Harvest Vitality Weaken ? Trag'Oul's Essence
10 Poison Nova Skeletal Mages
13 Echoes of Death Rapid Harvest Executioner ?
16 Amplify Damage Corpse Explosion ? Bone Spear
20 Andariel's Visage Cold Hand of Death Mortal Wound ? Kalan's Edict
Create your own build and share it with friends!

2. Common Talent Paths

2.1. Cursed Strikes Build (talent calculator link)

Level 1 Backlash Icon
Level 4 Grim Scythe Icon
Level 7 Harvest Vitality Icon
Level 10 Skeletal Mages Icon
Level 13 Rapid Harvest Icon
Level 16 Amplify Damage Icon
Level 20 Cold Hand of Death Icon

The Cursed Strikes Build turns Xul into a potent Bruiser with strong self-healing. We recommend picking Skeletal Mages Icon Skeletal Mages at Level 10 to prevent nearby enemy Heroes to escape too easily. At Level 20, Kalan's Edict Icon Kalan's Edict can be replaced by either Mortal Wound Icon Mortal Wound if the enemy team features multiple Supports, or Cold Hand of Death Icon Cold Hand of Death if you require additional crowd control during team fights.

2.2. Scythe Build (talent calculator link)

Level 1 Backlash Icon
Level 4 Reaper's Toll Icon
Level 7 Trag'Oul's Essence Icon
Level 10 Skeletal Mages Icon
Level 13 Echoes of Death Icon
Level 16 Amplify Damage Icon
Level 20 Mortal Wound Icon

The Scythe Build offers plenty of AoE damage thanks to the reduced cooldown on Spectral Scythe Icon Spectral Scythe and the additional Scythes offered by Echoes of Death Icon Echoes of Death at Level 13. Ultimately, due to Mortal Wound Icon Mortal Wound at Level 20, this Build becomes particularly powerful against double Support composition who rely on a lot of healing.

2.3. Skeleton Build (talent calculator link)

Level 1 Shackler Icon
Level 4 Jailors Icon
Level 7 Trag'Oul's Essence Icon
Level 10 Skeletal Mages Icon
Level 13 Executioner Icon
Level 16 Corpse Explosion Icon
Level 20 Kalan's Edict Icon

The Skeleton Build focuses on Xul's self-sustain provided by Trag'Oul's Essence Icon Trag'Oul's Essence and the synergy between Skeletal Mages Icon Skeletal Mages (even amplified at Level 20 after acquiring Cold Hand of Death Icon Cold Hand of Death) and Executioner Icon Executioner, which almost permanently buffs Xul's Basic Attack damage.

3. Level 1 Talents

Xul Backlash ?
Backlash (Level 1) Diablo Xul

When Bone Armor expires, nearby enemy Heroes take damage equal to 12% of their maximum Health.

Xul Shackler ?
Shackler (Level 1) Diablo Xul

While Bone Armor is active, nearby enemies are Slowed by 35% for 1 second. Basic Attacks against Heroes that are Stunned, Rooted, or Slowed reduce the cooldown of Bone Armor by 2 seconds.

Xul Shade ?
Shade (Level 1) Diablo Xul

While Bone Armor is active, Xul evades all Basic Attacks, but increases the cooldown of Bone Armor by 20 seconds.

3.1. Discussion

Backlash Icon Backlash is an aggressive talent, which requires you to stay close to nearby enemy Heroes in order to benefit from its effect. The damage effect is quite significant, especially against high health opponents like Warriors and certain Specialists.

Shackler Icon Shackler's cooldown reduction on Bone Armor Icon Bone Armor makes it a pretty decent talent if your team composition features multiple Heroes that offer reliable sources of crowd control, such as Arthas or Jaina.

Shade Icon Shade comes with the drawback of increasing Bone Armor Icon Bone Armor's cooldown by 20 seconds. However, the Basic Attack evasion is capable of absorbing more damage done to Xul than the original shield of Bone Armor, especially against hard-hitting Assassins like Thrall or Greymane.

4. Level 4 Talents

Xul Reaper's Toll ?
Reaper's Toll (Level 4) Diablo Xul

Quest: Hit 20 Heroes with Spectral Scythe.

Reward: Reduce the cooldown of Spectral Scythe by 3 seconds.

Xul Grim Scythe
Grim Scythe (Level 4) Diablo Xul

Each enemy hit by Cursed Strikes reduces its cooldown by 0.75 seconds, up to 12 seconds.

Xul Jailors
Jailors (Level 4) Diablo Xul

Bone Prison spawns 2 Skeletal Warriors. These do not count towards Xul's Raise Skeleton maximum.

Quest: Spawn 80 Skeletal Warriors.

Reward: While fixating on an enemy, Skeletal Warriors gain 50% Movement and Attack Speed.

4.1. Discussion

Jailors Icon Jailors's Quest reward can be completed quite easily if Xul rotates between multiple lanes in order to raise as many Skeletons as possible. The increased number of Skeletons and their faster Attack Speed all have great synergy with other Skeleton based talents like Trag'Oul's Essence Icon Trag'Oul's Essence at Level 7 and Kalan's Edict Icon Kalan's Edict at Level 20.

Grim Scythe Icon Grim Scythe lays a solid foundation to a Cursed Strikes Icon Cursed Strikes based Build. Its cooldown reduction is vital to increasing the value of follow up talents like Harvest Vitality Icon Harvest Vitality at Level 7 and Rapid Harvest Icon Rapid Harvest at Level 13, as it allows you to use Cursed Strikes with all of its self-healing and Attack Speed buffs

Reaper's Toll Icon Reaper's Toll requires you to hit enemy Heroes using Spectral Scythe Icon Spectral Scythe in order to fulfill its Quest reward. Unfortunately, many Heroes can dodge Spectral Scythe fairly easy, which makes this talent a rather unreliable. However, against double Support compositions, Reaper's Toll is the correct decision, as it paves the way for Echoes of Death Icon Echoes of Death at Level 13 and, more importantly, Mortal Wound Icon Mortal Wound at Level 20, which will severely cripple the enemy team's Supports.

5. Level 7 Talents

Xul Harvest Vitality
Harvest Vitality (Level 7) Diablo Xul

Cursed Strikes heals for 60% of the damage dealt to Heroes.

Xul Weaken ?
Weaken (Level 7) Diablo Xul

Increase the Attack Speed reduction of Cursed Strikes by 35% and the duration by 1 second.

Xul Trag'Oul's Essence
Trag'Oul's Essence (Level 7) Diablo Xul

Every time a Skeletal Warrior attacks an enemy, restore 0.5% of Xul's maximum Health and 0.5% of his maximum Mana.

5.1. Discussion

The Mana and health regeneration provided by Trag'Oul's Essence Icon Trag'Oul's Essence can often be crucial to help Xul stay in lane and avoid unnecessary downtime due to being forced to teleport back to base.

Harvest Vitality Icon Harvest Vitality works very well if you chose Grim Scythe Icon Grim Scythe at Level 4. It becomes especially powerful if the enemy team composition features multiple melee Heroes that are more likely to get hit by Cursed Strikes Icon Cursed Strikes than ranged Heroes in the backline.

Weaken Icon Weaken is a very situational talent to pick. It can work great against multiple enemy melee Heroes, since Xul usually has an easy time hitting them with Cursed Strikes Icon Cursed Strikes. However, against ranged Heroes who are able to kite Xul, it has very little value. We recommend this talent if your team needs additional counters to strong melee Basic Attackers like Illidan or Greymane.

6. Level 10 Talents

Xul Poison Nova
Poison Nova (Level 10) Diablo Xul
  • Mana: 100
  • Cooldown: 90 seconds

After 0.5 seconds, release poisonous missiles that deal 570 (+4% per level) damage to all enemies hit over 10 seconds.

Xul Skeletal Mages
Skeletal Mages (Level 10) Diablo Xul
  • Mana: 80
  • Cooldown: 90 seconds

Summon 4 Frost Mages in a line that attack nearby enemies for 47 (+4% per level) damage a second and Slow them by 30% for 2 seconds. Last up to 15 seconds.

6.1. Discussion

At this level, Heroic Abilities become available. Poison Nova Icon Poison Nova and Skeletal Mages Icon Skeletal Mages have already been described in the Abilities section.

Poison Nova Icon Poison Nova is a powerful AoE damage over time Heroic Ability, which becomes particularly powerful if the enemy team lacks AoE healing. Furthermore, melee Heroes obviously have a harder time dodging the Poison Nova's projectiles, since Xul can reach them more easily than ranged Heroes. Consequently, it is crucial to analyse the enemy team composition before picking Poison Nova.

Skeletal Mages Icon Skeletal Mages fulfills a different role than Poison Nova Icon Poison Nova, since it is less about dealing damage and more about zoning. The wall of Skeletal Mages functions very similarly to Tassadar's Force Wall Icon Force Wall, it can either be used to prevent enemies from entering a specific area or it can be used to chase down retreating opponents.

7. Level 13 Talents

Xul Echoes of Death
Echoes of Death (Level 13) Diablo Xul

Spectral Scythe spawns 2 additional scythes next to the first after 1.5 seconds, dealing 60% damage.

Xul Rapid Harvest
Rapid Harvest (Level 13) Diablo Xul

Gain 5% Attack Speed for 3 seconds each time Cursed Strikes hits an enemy, up to 75%.

Xul Executioner ?
Executioner (Level 13) Diablo Xul

Attacking a Hero that is slowed, rooted, or stunned increases your Basic Attack damage by 30% for 3 seconds.

7.1. Discussion

Echoes of Death Icon Echoes of Death offers increased waveclear and AoE damage, which will greatly enhance Xul's combat performance during team fights. This talent also has good synergy with other Spectral Scythe Icon Spectral Scythe related talents, such as Reaper's Toll Icon Reaper's Toll and Mortal Wound Icon Mortal Wound.

Rapid Harvest Icon Rapid Harvest's Attack Speed bonus causes you to gain more value from the cooldown provided by Grim Scythe Icon Grim Scythe at Level 1. As such we definitely recommend going for this talent if you decided to commit to a Cursed Strikes Icon Cursed Strikes Talent Build.

Executioner Icon Executioner can be a relevant talent if your team has several reliable sources of crowd control, such as Jaina or Muradin, in your team in order to consistently benefit from Executioner's bonus damage.

8. Level 16 Talents

Xul Amplify Damage
Amplify Damage (Level 16) Diablo Xul

Enemies Rooted by Bone Prison lose 25 Armor for 1.75 seconds.

Xul Corpse Explosion ?
Corpse Explosion (Level 16) Diablo Xul

When Skeletal Warriors die they explode for 55 (+4% per level) damage in a small area. Deals 100% increased damage to non-Heroic enemies.

Xul Bone Spear
Bone Spear (Level 16) Diablo Xul
  • Cooldown: 12 seconds

Deal 230 (+4% per level) damage to enemies in a line.

8.1. Discussion

Amplify Damage Icon Amplify Damage enables Xul and his teammates to focus and kill a single enemy Hero more efficiently by increasing all damage taken by 25%. Similar to Tyrande's Hunter's Mark Icon Hunter's Mark, Amplify Damage can work wonders if your team has decent burst damage to follow up on a rooted target.

Bone Spear Icon Bone Spear comes with very short cooldown, which is exactly what makes this talent so impactful. Being able to damage multiple Heroes and to clear Minion Waves more efficiently makes this talent almost too good to be neglected.

Corpse Explosion Icon Corpse Explosion's Skeleton damage is a useful tool to apply additional damage on a target trapped by Bone Prison Icon Bone Prison. If Xul completed the Jailors Icon Jailors Quest, the increased Movement Speed causes Skeletons to move to the target much faster, which guarantees more reliable corpse explosions near the desired target.

9. Level 20 Talents

Xul Andariel's Visage
Andariel's Visage (Level 20) Diablo Xul

Poison Nova heals for 50% of the damage dealt.

Passive: Skeletal Warriors deal 50% increased damage.

Xul Cold Hand of Death
Cold Hand of Death (Level 20) Diablo Xul

Increase the Slow of Frost Mages by 20%.

Passive: Skeletal Warrior attacks Slow enemies by 30% for 2 seconds.

Xul Mortal Wound ?
Mortal Wound (Level 20) Diablo Xul

Enemies hit by Spectral Scythe receive 75% less healing for 4 seconds.

Xul Kalan's Edict
Kalan's Edict (Level 20) Diablo Xul

Skeletal Warrior attacks reduce the cooldown of Xul's Heroic Ability by 1%.

9.1. Discussion

Cold Hand of Death Icon Cold Hand of Death's causes every Skeleton to slow their enemies' Movement Speed by 30%, which is a lot. While the Skeletons are fairly easy to kill, they still provide a decent follow-up slow to targets trapped by Bone Prison Icon Bone Prison. Furthermore, the slow applied by the Skeletons has great synergy with talents like Shackler Icon Shackler at Level 1 or Executioner Icon Executioner at Level 13.

Kalan's Edict Icon Kalan's Edict significantly lowers the cooldown of Xul's Heroic Abilities whenever a Skeleton deals damage with a Basic Attack, which is a very powerful buff to his overall combat performance. This talent becomes even better if you chose Jailors Icon Jailors at Level 4 and completed its Quest reward, which will cause all of your Skeletons to attack faster.

Mortal Wound Icon Mortal Wound is an incredibly powerful talent against enemy healers. Being able to shut down strong healing abilities, such as Lt. Morales' Healing Beam Icon Healing Beam or Rehgar's Ancestral Healing Icon Ancestral Healing, turns Xul into a very strong late game team fighter.

Andariel's Visage Icon Andariel's Visage adds a significant amount of self-heal and damage to Xul's kit. Since both benefits are applied passively and are adequately strong, there is, in theory, very little you can do wrong by picking this talent. However, overall we would not recommend picking this talent in competitive game modes, since the other Level 20 talents usually offer more utility and impact throughout the game. In less competitive game modes like Quick Match or Unranked, Andariel's Visage can be a worthwhile choice.

10. ChangeLog

+ show all entries - show only 10 entries
  • 16 Jul. 2017: Updated Xul's talent descriptions.
  • 14 Jul. 2017: Corpse Explosion changed from Not Recommended to Recommended.
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