Patience is probably the most important quality to have if you plan on utilizing E.T.C. to the fullest. When he is used properly, he has an extremely strong base kit, making him fairly high on the Heroes of the Storm Tier List. However, this kit isn’t always obvious to new players when they first try using him.
These new players often use their abilities as soon as they are up, which can cost them opportunities to secure important kills or can stop them from being able to protect their assassins at critical points in team fights. Using abilities as soon as they are off cooldown also makes them extremely predictable for the enemy team to know when they are up. Skilled opponents will use this knowledge to their advantage and bait those abilities before engaging.
Face Melt (W)
In this article, we will analyze specific examples of how impatience can harm E.T.C. players, as well as how patience can pay off big time. Let’s start out with the one part of his kit that is the most obvious when it is used incorrectly: Face Melt. This ability is a knockback around E.T.C. The impatient E.T.C. player moves his enemies with this ability whenever he can. This is extremely bad because the incredible disruption Face Melt can provide can save or help enemies in a multitude of ways.
For instance, if your E.T.C. uses Face Melt immediately after a Powerslide, he can knock the targeted enemy safely out of any follow-up stuns or roots that would have allowed your team to secure that kill. Another example of this impatient play saving lives is when an E.T.C. hits an enemy hero outside of a friendly area of effect or damaging spell like Blizzard or Flamestrike. This effectively heals the opponent, as they don’t take damage that they would have took if you did not hit them.
Try to be aware and notice what spells your team has, and be patient with your use of Face Melt. Instead of knocking enemies out of your team’s AoE spells, knock them into the damaging area. Instead of using your Face Melt directly after Powerslide, use it when your team’s follow-up abilities have already been used and just a little more crowd control is all that is needed to secure that kill. These are mistakes I commonly see during Heroes of the Storm Boosting sessions. Always be aware of how you are using Face Melt, and use it only when you have a plan in mind.
The next part of E.T.C.’s kit that can cause facepalming when used improperly is his Powerslide. The issues with using this ability impatiently will be less immediately noticed to your teammates than Face Melt, but its impact is still very large and potentially game costing. Many E.T.C. players will simply use their Powerslide on the first enemy they see when a teamfight is breaking out. This is impatient, and it is costly for a number of reasons.
The first enemy you see is often the enemy team’s tank. Generally, this is not a good target to focus at the beginning of a fight because the higher health pool and damage mitigation that tanks provide, along with the fact that the tanks are not much of a threat to your team. E.T.C. is extremely weak when Powerslide is down. Using it at the start of a fight puts your team at an immediate disadvantage for its 12 second cooldown, unless it is used to secure a kill, or for heavy damage on an enemy that is high on the HotS Tier List.
Another mistake you will see bad E.T.C. players make is to use Powerslide to chase deep behind the enemy team’s front line opponents. This is bad because it places you far away from your team, and your highest mobility ability is now on cooldown. That leaves you all alone in the enemy’s backline for 12 seconds with no escape. It is extremely likely that either you or your own team’s backline will die, since you are stranded and cannot peel for your allies. Don’t be this E.T.C. player. Keep trying on various HotS Accounts until you identify the mistake and fix it.
Use your Powerslides patiently and intelligently. Instead of using it to dive into their team, wait until the enemy team engages on you and stun whoever is the biggest threat to your team, usually an assassin. This will allow your team to focus them and secure the kill before they cause serious damage.
Mosh Pit (R)
Finally, we come to the headline skill: Mosh Pit. Let me dispel once and for all the myth that a 4- or 5-man Mosh Pit is automatically a good thing. I can’t tell you the number of times during a HotS Boost I have seen an E.T.C. player land a 4-5 person Mosh Pit, and then complain that no one was killed as a result of it. If no one died as a result of Mosh Pit, then it was probably cast poorly and impatiently. If you hit all 4-5 but your team cannot engage on it, it was not very helpful, even though you hit all of them.
This happens extremely often because the E.T.C. player will see the enemy team grouped up and engage without thinking about anything else. Because you used Mosh Pit with no follow up, and you effectively wasted a 120-second cooldown ability. Be the patient rock god. Keep track of spells that can interrupt you, damage abilities from characters high on the HotS Tier List, as well as your allies’ ability to follow up on the crowd control.
Don’t go in and use Mosh Pit unless you know it will immediately swing that teamfight fight in your team’s favor. Being patient allows you to wait for the right opportunity and take those chances when they come, rather than the first one that you see. Now that you see how important patience is, here are my favorite strategies that I tell people during HotS Boosts to help stay patient and useful in your games:
Peel for your teammates
Focusing on peeling rather than engaging will help foster patience when you are playing E.T.C. Instead of using aggressively using your abilities, try to focus on saving your skills for when you can protect your squishy teammates. Doing this will help you see the true value lost by using Powerslide or Face Melt for no reason.
Try to track the cooldowns on enemy interrupts and your teammates’ damage spells before activating Mosh Pit.
This will take some serious practice to do, but once you have done it enough times, it will become second nature to you. If you struggle starting to doing this, I recommend getting one of our Heroes of the Storm Accounts so you practice following one specific enemy during your games and be mindful of when they use their interrupt. If the their team has a character fairly high on the Heroes of the Storm Tier List, for example, a Tyrande, watch for her Lunar Flare, and do not use your Mosh Pit until you see that she has used her Lunar Flare. Try to start getting the hang for the timing of enemy cooldowns on their interrupts so you can have an idea for the window of time you have to use your extremely strong Heroic ability.
Avoid chasing whenever possible
Chasing a weakened enemy as E.T.C. is a large waste of time and is rarely successful. E.T.C. is huge crowd control giant but has very little damage output. If your teammates were unable finish the low health enemy hero, the chances that you will be able to kill them on your own are very low. But even if you are able to, and end up getting that pesky kill, the sacrifice you just made hurts the rest of your team because you left them vulnerable without a tank and without strong crowd control. A good trick may be to watch and identify times where you were/are chasing, and decide if it is really worth it. Doing this will make you more patient and you will start to see other chances or plays that you may have missed.
No matter who you are playing, being impatient will cost you many games. E.T.C struggles with this the most, and hasty decisions weaken his kit (or in some cases help their team). Don’t be afraid to sit down and practice on variousHotS Accounts until you get it right. E.T.C. truly is the king of crowd control, but it requires patience and practice to make him as fun as he can be. Try to find situations where you are become impatient and need to “do something” and try to analyze if it is necessary or not. If you can’t find a good use, then don’t force a play that was not made to happen. Follow these tips from our Heroes of the Storm boost team, and you’ll be good at E.T.C in no time!