Core Concepts: Team Leveling (Part 1)
Greetings, friends! In the previous issues of Core Concepts, we’ve talked about what sets Heroes of the Storm apart from other MOBAs, and offered a few Battleground basics. In the first of this two-part issue which focuses on Team Leveling, we’ll cover the following topics:
As you digest the information and suggestions we present here, we encourage you to check out the tutorial within the game and start playing. Before no time at all, you’ll be smashing Cores with the best of them.
EXPERIENCE (XP) IN THE NEXUS
In Heroes of the Storm, any XP earned by the players on your team earn is deposited toward your team’s total. In turn, all Heroes on the team will level together, and will level faster when their efforts are focused and in-sync.
XP in the Nexus is acquired from defeating minions, destroying enemy fortifications, capturing Mercenary camps, taking down opposing heroes, and completing the Battleground Objectives. Of these, minion kills (a.k.a. “soaking”) are the easiest and most effective way to rank up in the early game.
Tip #1Structures will always grant full experience to the team once destroyed, whether or not an ally is in range at the time.
Tip #2Only structures that use ammunition grant experience. Killing gates and walls offer only strategic advantages.
Tip #3Hero-summoned units do not grant experience. Examples include Gazlowe’s Rock-It! Turrets, Probius’ Pylons, Zagara’s Hydralisks and Roaches, and others.
Tip #4Mercenary camp experience is split between killing the Mercenaries and capturing their beacon. Stealing a camp from your enemy not only grants you the extra pushing power, but some coveted experience points.
LEVELING: THE FLOW OF THE GAME
Matches in Heroes of the Storm can be summarily broken up into three different sections: the early game, mid-game, and the late game. If you’re new to the Nexus, understanding matches in this way can help you ease into complexities that present themselves in more advanced levels of play. It’s important to note that each of these three sections of the game can offer significant opportunities for teams to achieve victory.
The early game begins at the start of the match, and lasts until the Team reaches Level 10. Upon reaching that point heroes will unlock their Heroic Abilities, which are the most powerful abilities in the game.
During this early part of the game, it is essential that your team makes maximum benefit of the XP sources available. The easiest and most accessible way to acquire XP during this time is to clear the waves of minions which advance across the lanes. In most cases, you’ll want at least one ally covering each lane to soak up the most XP for the team as they can in the race to reach level 10 before your opponents. A lane should generally only be abandoned if a more beneficial opportunity to acquire XP presents itself.
Tip 1Some Heroes with excellent wave clear, such as Xul, can quickly take down a minion wave in one lane and travel to another to “double soak” XP alone. This is most effective on battlegrounds with minimal distance between lanes, such as Blackheart’s Bay and Tomb of the Spider Queen.
Tip 2If the allied minions in your lane are pushing up to the enemy gate, consider briefly “rotating” to another lane to help allies set up a gank or assault a tower. Remember to rotate back to your lane as soon as you’ve finished assissting your teammates —you wouldn’t want to miss out on too much XP!
Tip 3A missing enemy hero in a lane can be a double-edged sword. The longer that hero is absent, the more XP his team will miss out on, which can give your team a slight lead. On the other hand, that player may be helping to set up an ambush should you or an ally over-extend in lane. Play cautiously until the missing hero reappears on your minimap.
As soon as level 10 has been achieved, the next phase of the game begins. This period is where you’ll get one of the biggest power spikes during the match, objectives become much more effective, and team compositions can shine as heroic ability synergies are utilized.
After level 10, acquiring XP continues to be integral for unlocking new talents. In addition to killing minions, your team will gain XP along the way as you work together to expediently raze fortifications, capture Mercenary camps, take down opposing Heroes, and complete the Battleground Objectives. Acquiring XP in the mid-game is still important, but soaking in lanes can be neglected to some extent for big power plays. Depending upon which Battleground you’re fighting on, different opportunities will present themselves as the battle progresses. Be attentive to which Battleground you’re fighting on, and be aware of Mercenary Camp and Objective timings.
Tip 1Take advantage of Heroes with global movement abilities, such as Dehaka, Brightwing, and Falstad, to soak lane XP while the enemies are gathering for an objective. These Heroes can show up just as a fight starts without needing to waste time traveling across the map.
Tip 2As the match progresses, look for opportunities to group up with your allies and pick off solo enemy Heroes. Doing so can give your team a player advantage heading into the next objective, or more freedom to roam the map and gain an XP lead.
Upon reaching level 20, your team is provided with options for upgrading their Heroic abilities to make them even more impactful during team fights. Since level 20 brings your final power spike, the acquisition of XP will continue to be of less priority. Careful team fighting, acquiring objectives, and keeping lanes pushed will be the primary foci.
After level 20, it’s time to start looking for ways to end the game. At this stage, many Battleground Objectives become quite powerful, and capitalizing on them can bring you victory. Your team should also be on the lookout for opportunities to take down individual heroes. Oftentimes, gaining a player advantage at this stage of the game will result in doom for your enemies.
Tip 1If your opponents reach level 20 first, it’s critical to catch up before engaging in the next fight. Find ways to quickly earn XP in pursuit of that final talent, but do your best not to die in the process.
Tip 2If you reach level 20 first, try to capitalize on your talent advantage by grouping up and starting a fight before the other team can catch up.
TO THOSE WHO DESTROY CORES, WE SALUTE YOU!
Thanks to all for checking in! Part 2 of this installment which focuses on further strategies for acquiring and utilizing XP is available here. As ever, please be sure to let us know about what you thought of the information provided so that we can stay on track for bringing you the most helpful hints and tips that can improve your experience. Until then, we’ll see you in the Nexus!