BlizzCon 2018: A brief look at new Heroes of the Storm hero, Orphea

While the official Deep Dive into Orphea’s talents and abilities didn’t happen until Saturday, reports from the show floor gave us a quick look at all of her talents and abilities. Here’s what they are and what we think of them.

Basic Abilities

Shadow Waltz (Q) - After 0.5 seconds, deal 150 damage to enemies in a line. Hitting a Hero with Shadow Waltz sets its cooldown to 2 seconds, refunds 25 Mana, and causes Orphea to dash a short distance upon moving.

Cost: 25
Cooldown: 5

Our take: Shadow Waltz seems to be one of Orphea’s main abilities. She has a variety of talents that allow it to deal more damage toward the end of its hit-box. We think this will make Shadow Waltz her main poking tool and possibly even her main damage tool. She will certainly have a Q build on day one.

Chomp (W) - After 0.625 seconds, deal 285 damage to nearby enemies in front of Orphea.

Cost: 60
Cooldown: 10

Our take: Hilariously, her second build uses both her W and E abilities together. This is because of a certain talent that allows her to use both at the same time. Chomp is a great ability on its own but its short channel time means that she needs to use it almost exclusively in team fights or behind a tank.

Dread (E) - Release a wave of dread that deals 85 damage to enemies hit. Dread erupts 0.75 seconds after reaching the end of its path, dealing 175 damage and Slowing enemies in the area by 25% for 2 seconds.

Cost: 50
Cooldown: 14

Our take: If you build Orphea around using Dread it will be one of her most spammable abilities. While you certainly want to hit enemies toward the end of Dread, its slow is good enough to use it almost any time. If you aren’t using a Dread build, it appears as if it has about the same end range as Shadow Waltz, allowing you to easily chain the two abilities together.

Trait

Overflowing Chaos (D) - Hitting an enemy Hero with a Basic Ability grants 1 Chaos. Chaos can stack up to 3 times. While Orphea has Chaos, her Basic Attacks against Heroes consume all Chaos, dealing 50% increased damage per stack, and healing for 100% of the damage dealt.

Our take: If it wasn’t clear that Orphea was a mage type hero, this should seal the deal. She shouldn’t be using her basic attacks much at all. Instead, she should be chaining her abilities together in an attempt to get as much of a bonus on her basic attack as possible. This will be her main method of self-sustain and good Orphea players will manage her basic attacks with stop commands whenever possible.

Heroic Abilities 

Eternal Feast (R1) - After 1.5 seconds, deal 210 damage in an area. Eternal Feast repeats every 1 second as long as it hits an enemy Hero.

Cost: 75
Cooldown: 50

Our take: This will be Orphea’s main ult, hands down. Why? Because it has a chance of never stopping. When paired together with a party that has root and stun effects, this could do thousands of damage all at once.

Crushing Jaws (R2) - After 1.25 seconds, pull enemies in an area towards the center, dealing 275 damage and Stunning them for 0.75 seconds.

Cost: 75
Cooldown: 50

Our take: Crushing Jaws seems like an neat ultimate but there isn’t as much use for “black hole” ults as you’d think. Zarya, for example, doesn’t use her gravity well much. The rest of her abilities are all based around doing damage, so having a displacement ult just doesn’t seem to jive with them.

Talents

Level 1 talents

En Pointe  - Shadow Waltz deals an increased 50% damage to enemies hit by its end.

Growing Nightmare  - Each Hero hit by the wave of Dread increases the damage of its eruption by 25%.

Ancestral Strength  - Non-Heroic Abilities deal 25% more damage to Stunned, Rooted, Silenced or Slowed enemies and grant 1 additional Chaos when hitting Heroes.

Our take: Your level one talent will determine your build for the rest of the game. There are really only two choices here. You either take En Pointe if you are taking a Q build or Growing Nightmare if you are doing any other build. Ancestral Strength is neat and can activate off of her own Dread abilities, but you’ll note that the damage bonuses of En Pointe and Growing Nightmare gain just as much of a damage bonus without the debuff restriction.

Level 4 talents

Allegrissimo  - Hitting Heroes with the end of Shadow Waltz sets its cooldown to 1 second.

Backbiter  - If Chomp hits a Hero, Orphea immediately dashes a short distance backwards.

Fright  - Dread's Slow also applies to enemies in Dread's path, and stacks up to 50%.

Our take: While Backbiter is a great positioning ability, if Orphea is in a range to make use of it she is already dead. Instead, you have a simple choice between Allegrissimo for any Q build and Fright for everything else. Allegrissimo turns Shadow Waltz into a spammable damage ability while Fright can slow your enemies down to almost nothing if they get caught in Fright’s wave.

Level 7 talents

Insatiable  - Hitting a Hero with Chomp sets its cooldown to 2 seconds.

Ravenous Hunger  - Quest: Minions that die within 1.5 seconds of being hit by Chomp permanently increase its damage by 3 and heal Orphea for 60. Heroes that die increase its damage by 60 and heal Orphea for 25% of her maximum Health.

Mind Devourer  - Quest: Hitting Heroes with Dread increases its damage by 5, up to 200. Reward: After hitting 40 Heroes, hitting an enemy Hero with Dread's eruption sets its cooldown to 6 seconds and refunds 50 Mana.

Our take: Level 7 quests are always hard to complete, but they are still Orphea’s best choices here. Honestly, no matter what build she is doing, she will likely take Mind Devourer. It refunds mana, increases damage, and lowers cooldowns on one of Orphea’s major abilities, which is all a Mage needs.

Level 13 talents

Determination  - After dashing with Shadow Waltz, Orphea gains 50 Spell Armor, stacking up to 2 times. While Orphea has Determination, her Physical damage is increased by 15%

Abyssal Symbiosis  Hitting a Hero with Chomp instantly grants Orphea maximum Chaos.

Invasive Miasma  - Activate to deal 150 damage to all nearby enemies after 2 seconds. For each Hero hit, heal for 182 and gain 1 Chaos.

Our take: This is a hard one. Determination gives Orphea a great defensive dump of spell armor, but most DPS comes from auto-attack these days. Increasing her physical damage helps her heal and take advantage of Chaos, but it’s probably not enough to be worth it. Invasive Miasma is a great ability but it requires enemies to be around her, which is risky for a Mage type hero. This is why the best Level 13 talent is likely Abyssal Symbiosis. It essentially skyrockets her healing by getting her to max chaos quickly. It also has great synergy with a Level 16 talent.

Level 16 talents

Bond of Anguish  - Shadow Waltz deals bonus damage to Heroes equal to 3% of their maximum Health, healing Orphea for 50% of damage dealt.

Dead Magic  - Basic Attacks that consume Chaos ignore Armor and deal 115 Spell Damage to all enemies around the target.

Lurking Terror  - After Dread erupts and for 2 seconds after, activate to cast Chomp from the eruption area. Does not share a cooldown with Chomp.

Our take: Once again, this is a hard one. Honestly, all three of them are great. Bond of Anguish caps out your Q build by allowing it to heal Orphea and deal percentile damage. Dead Magic causes her basic attacks to splash, which is great with any chaos stacking abilities. However, Lurking Terror is probably the best talent and it’s probably what makes the E build better than the Q build. It basically allows you to activate Chomp whenever you cast Dread. So you will get all of your Dread bonuses and all of your Chomp bonuses, including max Chaos!

Level 20 talents

Monster Within  - Eternal Feast grants 1 Chaos each time it hits a Hero. While Eternal Feast is active, Orphea's Attack Speed is increased by 50%.

Engulfing Oblivion  - Crushing Jaws reduces the Armor of Heroes hit by 25 for 2 seconds. Takedowns set its cooldown to 5 seconds.

Eldritch Conduit  - Each Chaos consumed increases Orphea's Spell Power by 5%, up to 50%. After reaching the maximum bonus, the Spell Power is increased by an additional 50%. Lasts 10 seconds.

Final Toccata  - Activate to instantly reset the cooldown of Shadow Waltz. For the next 6 seconds, dashing with Shadow Waltz resets its cooldown.

Our take: Finally, this is another choice between two talents. Either you increase Monster Within, which turns Orphea’s basic attacks into a potent source of damage so long as the effects continue, or you take Eldritch Conduit, which further increases her spell power. Honestly, whichever one you take will depend on how consistently you can make Eternal Feast last and that will largely depend on the opposing comp.

That’s all we have on Orphea right now. Remember, you will get her for free if you either attended Blizzcon or have a Blizzcon Virtual Ticket.