Zul'jin Build Guide “Taz'dingo!”
Welcome to our guide for Zul'jin, a Ranged Assassin 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. Zul'jin's Overview
Zul'jin is a ranged assassin who can be utilized as either a Basic Attack sustained damage dealer or Basic Ability burst "mage". His play style is ultimately dependent on the way in which Zul'jin is talented. Berserker and Grievous Throw upgrades tend to shift Zul'jin toward Basic Attack damage, while Twin Cleave upgrades combined with Guillotine make for exceptional burst damage. Much like other ranged assassins, learning how to effectively position within the allied backline is integral to Zul'jin's success; as many times he will end up being the enemy team's primary target of focus.
"You Want Axe?" is a Baseline Quest added to Zul'jin's kit during the Junkrat patch release. The Quest can be broken down into 3 components. Every 5 Basic Attacks against Heroes will increase Zul'jin's Basic Attack damage by 1. Although not quite as important for Zul'jin when utilizing the Twin Cleave build, the damage granted by this portion of the quest can add up fast and should always be "farmed" by striking over-extended Heroes with Basic Attacks whenever possible. The second portion of the Quest is completed once Zul'jin has struck enemy Heroes with 75 Basic Attacks. This grants Zul'jin 1.1 additional Basic Attack range which is incredibly important for either of Zul'jin's two builds. The bonus range will allow Zul'jin to either deal Basic Attack damage from a safer position during fights, or more quickly generate the remaining stacks of the "You Want Axe?" Quest in order to obtain the Twin Cleave upgrade. Once Zul'jin has landed 150 Basic Attacks on enemy Heroes, his Twin Cleave will revolve around twice (which is an integral component to the Twin Cleave Build).
Although at first glance the Warlord of the Amani might seem relatively easy to master, his Trait Berserker adds some interesting depth the stereo-typically straightforward ranged-assassin pick. Players will constantly need to determine when to sacrifice Zul'jin's very own Health for a massive bonus to his damage output. The ability to balance this mechanic will quickly separate the good Zul'jin players and the great.
2. Zul'jin's Strengths and Weaknesses
- Incredibly high single target damage output via Basic Attacks, or AoE burst damage from Twin Cleave combined with Guillotine
- Multiple sources of bonus Attack Range makes effective positioning easier than similar ranged assassins
- Regeneration adds nice self-sustain in lane and between teamfights
- Taz'dingo! provides a decent means of survivablity to the otherwise squishy Hero
- Can fill multiple roles to accommodate a multitude of team compositions and match-ups
- Twin Cleave Build grants impressive waveclear
- No gap-closer; very susceptible to enemy ganks and Heroes with dive potential
- Overuse of Berserker will result in needlessly low Health
- Vulnerable to crowd-control and focus-fire
- Effectively useless when Blinded while running the Basic Attack build
- Very difficult to play effectively with a fairly high learning-curve
3. Zul'jin's Talent Build Cheatsheet
Basic Attack BuildTalent calculator »
The Basic Attack Build focuses on maximizing the effectiveness of Zul'jin's core mechanic Berserker, and the insanely high single-target damage output he is able to maintain with his Basic Attacks. The combination of Recklessness, Ferocity, and Taz'dingo! will cause Zul'jin to tear through his opponents as both his Attack Speed and Attack Damage will be phenomenal for Taz'dingo's entire duration should he become the target of the enemy focus. Amani Resilience provides Zul'jin with a much needed boost of survivability for when the Unkillable effect of Taz'dingo wears off. The Basic Attack build can also be modified by substituting in Boneslicer at Level 1 and Vicious Assault at Level 7. This will simply shift more emphasis onto Zul'jin successfully landing Grievous Throw and following up on his target(s) with Basic Attacks.
Twin Cleave BuildTalent calculator »
The Twin Cleave Build relies on the AoE poke damage provided by Zul'jin's Twin Cleave. When running this build, completing the final portion of "You Want Axe?" is imperative. The completion of this Quest by landing 150 Basic Attacks on enemy Heroes literally doubles the effectiveness of Twin Cleave as the blades begin to revolve twice. Arcanite Axes is integral to the build, as it will endlessly increase the amount of damage the blades deal as the Match goes on. Lacerate grants some nice utility to Zul'jin in the form of a moderate to spectacular Slow if enemy Heroes are struck with both Twin Cleave blades. A single combo of a fully Talented cast of Twin Cleave combined with Guillotine can easily delete squishier members of the enemy backline such as ranged assassins or supports.
4. Zul'jin's Synergies and Counters
5. Zul'jin's Maps
Zul'jin's role as a Basic Attack focused ranged assassin makes him a viable pick for most occasions. Nothing about his kit makes him particularly good or bad or any specific map and his viablity in a match should be centered more around the team's composition and it's needs as opposed to the map selection.
6. Zul'jin's Tips and Tricks
- The damage caused to Zul'jin by activating Berserker can be used to help him attain his bonus attack speed much faster, however try to never abuse Berserker to the point of leaving Zul'jin with low health in a potentially compromising position.
- Grievous Throw will only strike and mark the first two enemies it comes into contact with. When intending to hit an enemy Hero, Zul'jin should avoid casting Grievous Throw at Heroes buried behind enemy minions, mercenaries, or structures.
- Because Twin Cleave always travels the same distance in a circular motion, Zul'jin can cast it at an angle to strike enemies close to him who would otherwise avoid its pathing.
- Make sure to find a safe stop to take cover before channeling Regeneration as damage will interrupt it's effect (this includes aggro on those pesky lane minions!)
- Although Zul'jin will get the most value from casting Taz'dingo! at low Health, it may sometimes be a wiser play to cast Taz'dingo preemptively to avoid enemy ability combos that would otherwise result in certain death.
- There is a slight delay when casting Guillotine, therefore Zul'jin should keep an eye the target's movement path and aim the ability accordingly.
7. Role in the Current Meta
Zul'jin is a solid pick for most team compositions as he will readily fill the need for a ranged assassin who can either deal a large amount of sustained or burst damage. Zul'jin is very susceptible to enemy Heroes who are able to dive onto him and disable him with stuns or silences. This is why it is imperative that Zul'jin be accompanied by a strong frontline comprised of Heroes who will be able to peel for him as he dishes out an endless volley of Basic Attacks or a heavy-hitting cast of Twin Cleave. He is also at his best when paired up with a solid support or two who can keep his Health up as he drains it for the Bonus Damage of Berserker's active. Supports who have means to boost his movement speed or Cleanse away stuns, snares, or roots are definitely a bonus as his lack or reliable gap-closer may result in him being easily cornered by the enemy team.
- 30 Jun. 2018 (talents page): Talents and recommendations updated following the June 27 balance patch.
- 13 Dec. 2017 (talents page): Made updates for the latest balance patch.
- Level 4 Talent Amani Rage has had the Armor Bonus reduced from 10 to 5 and the Health Regeneration duration increased from 6 to 10 seconds.
- Level 7 Talent Arcanite Axes no longer reduce the cooldown of Twin Cleave.
- Level 13 Talent Lacerate has had the Slow amount reduced from 15% to 10%.
- 02 Nov. 2017 (talents page): Updated the guide following the most recent balance patch, with the following changes being notable.
- Level 7 Talent Ferocity has had its Passive Attack speed bonus increased from 35 to 40%.
- Level 7 Talent Vicious Assault (Q) has had its damage bonus increased from 30 to 35%.
- Level 16 Talents Wrong Place Wrong Time and Let the Killing Begin are now correctly labeled Recommended and Situational respectively.
- 17 Oct. 2017 (talents page): Talents page updated for Zul'jin's rework in Junkrat's patch.
- 06 Oct. 2017 (talents page): Level 4 Talent Let The Killing Begin has had its duration reduced from 15 to 12 Seconds. Level 16 Talent Ferocity has had its Bonus Attack Speed reduced from 40% to 35%.
- 01 Sep. 2017 (talents page): Level 1 Talent Boneslicer has had the bonus damage increased from 20 to 30%.
- 11 May 2017 (talents page): Level 13 Talent Voodoo Shuffle has been changed from "Situational" to "Recommended". Its cooldown change has been noted and discussed.
- 06 Jan. 2017 (talents page): Added talent discussions.
- 05 Jan. 2017 (this page): Guide added.
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