Heroes of the Storm – Playing as Gazlowe
Gazlowe is a very fun hero to play in Heroes of the Storm because of his ability to harass and annoy enemy heroes. The game is still in Technical Alpha, and many changes might happen throughout the various iterative testing phases, but so far I feel comfortable with this talent spec I will discuss in a moment, because of its strategic values.
Mana is an issue at low levels because your mana pool is smaller. You can run out of juice quickly dishing out damage to your opponents. I choose the Scrap-o-Matic Smelter trait talent. Basically, you can lay up to three Rock-It! Turrets for 70 mana each. The first two Turrets have a 2 second cooldown. At that point, you aren’t able to place a third immediately. There’s a 11 second cooldown on that one. Each turret lasts about 20-30 second though.
Whenever you advance forward toward the enemy, it is good to have in mind to dismantle your turrets before moving forward. Keep that in mind: ALWAYS. Hit the Salvager button (D) and click your turret to dismantle it. The Scrap-o-Matic Smelter talent will kick in restoring 60 mana back to Gazlowe. You lose 10 mana in the trade, but you gain almost all the mana spent. When Gazlowe walks over a scrap, you will notice a green “plus” sign above his head which means he got mana restored.
At level 4, I prefer to choose the Minion Killer talent which increases damage against minions and mercenaries by 25%. Gazlowe can pretty much solo Mercenaries using Turrets to aggro and kill mercenaries, and of course, using the Xplodium charges to stun them. Since Gazlowe isn’t a tank, healer or assassin. your team can take care of business while you do the dirty work with Mercenaries.
At level 7, there are some interesting talents one can use in specific situations, but I simply love Engine Gunk (formerly known as Sapping Turrets). Turrets slow down enemies for 2 seconds. There is some good strategy to choosing that talent. For example, in the Haunted Mines the objective is to gather the most skulls to get a buffed up golem. Now what happens if you place three turrets in a row just outside the mines? The enemy Heroes will get slowed down. Harass them or force them to chase you inside the mine, placing turrets as you flee to slow them down. The more time they are delayed, the more skulls your team gets.
Gazlowe isn’t an assassin or a tank to go one-on-one against Heroes. So you play as the harasser, delayer, annoyer, misdirecter, and so on. Force heroes to chase you. Keep laying turrets as you flee to slow them down. Using these talents, there are many strategies you can think of ahead for specific battlegrounds. (Below Li Li is hit by the turret with the Engine Gunk talent. The purple halo around her shows her movement has been slowed down.)
At level 10, you get to choose one of two Hero Ability options: Grav-O-Bomb 3000 or Robo-Goblin. The Robo-Goblin transforms Gazlowe to deal increased 250% siege damage and gains reduction to crowd control effects. That talent has its uses, but I prefer the Grav-O-Bomb 3000 which creates a bubble with a large radius, pulling all enemy heroes within range toward its center and explodes dealing 410 damage (at level 10) and a bit over 1000 damage (at level 20).
Why Grav-O-Bomb over Robo-Goblin? Well, that is situational. When a game starts, press the Tab key to see the enemy team arrangement. If you see Zeratul or Nova, choose the Grav-O-Bomb at level 10. Zeratul and Nova can be very annoying with their stealth and talents. If you see the stealth silhouette near you or your teammates, simply drop the Grav-O-Bomb to break their stealth.
Let’s picture a scenario where Zeratul comes out of the blue and attacks Gazlowe. Zeratul has two abilities that may be considered the I-WIN-BUTTON for an assassin: Singularity Spike (W) slows you down by 40% for 3 seconds; and Blink teleports Zeratul to Gazlowe. After level 10, if Zeratul uses Shadow Assault (R) on you, pretty much that’s bad. Each attack teleports Zeratul to Gazlowe with an increased 25% attack speed.
In a scenario where Zeratul decloaks to attack Gazlowe, I drop the Grav-O-Bomb. Zeratul gets pulled back by the bomb, while Gazlowe safely runs away or mounts up.
At level 13, Burning Rage doesn’t make a lot of sense for Gazlowe because to do any damage he must be within melee range of an enemy Hero. You are left with three situational choices.
Kwik Release Charge allows you to stun twice in a row. However, the bomb still has a 5-second timer. EZ-PZ Dimensional Ripper slows Heroes by 35% and freezes minions and structures for 3 sec. Sprint increases Gazlowe’s movement speed by 75% for 3 sec.
At level 16, there are four choices including Stoneskin. Two of the choices modify the Turrets: Turret Storage and Long-Ranged Turrets. The first one increases turret charges to 4. Meaning you can have 4 turret on the ground. The latter increases the attack range by 25%.
Hyperfocus Coils makes the Deth Lazor charge up twice faster.
The latest Technical Alpha patch 30414 was deployed today. Some terms or names may have changed. I did notice new talents added for Gazlowe.
In the meantime, below is a video where I win a game as gazlowe with no deaths.
Disclaimer: I have never played a MOBA. All material herein is from Technical Alpha and not final. Blizzard will implement several iterative changes throughout alpha, closed beta and open beta.