Just before the holidays, Blizzard unveiled the next hero headed for Heroes of the Storm: Firebat, the pyroclastic flame-tosser who hails from StarCraft. Now available to play on the HotS PTR, Blaze—as he'll be known within the Nexus—is a ranged tank hero with a penchant for lighting it up.
"The Firebat is definitely a fan favorite unit from StarCraft with some memorable voice work," hero designer Jade Martin told PC Gamer. "I know our team has been itching to get the Firebat in as well so we could relive some of that nostalgia, it just so happened that we were looking for a StarCraft hero who was also a Warrior and Blaze really fit what we were looking for!"
Blaze specializes in initiating fights and dealing periodic AoE damage via his various flame attacks. His Q ability, Flame Stream, fires two streams that deal 83 damage to enemies hit, with a cooldown of four seconds. Oil Spill, his W ability, dispenses an oil slick on the ground for five seconds that slows enemies who come in contact. If an Oil Spill is hit by Flame Stream, it ignites for 2.4 seconds, no longer slowing enemies but instead dealing 18 damage every 0.3 seconds, as well as healing Blaze for 49 health ever 0.3 seconds if he's standing in the flames. Oil Spill has two charges and a 12-second cooldown.
His E ability, Jet Propulsion, charges forward after 0.5 seconds. If Blaze hits an enemy hero, the ability deals 53 damage and stuns them and nearby heroes for 1.25 seconds. The ability has a 12 second cooldown.
Finally, Blaze's Trait (D ability) is Pyromania, which grants 25 armor and deals 40 damage every 0.5 seconds to nearby enemies for four seconds. It has a long cooldown for 90 seconds, but each hero hit by flame stream reduces that by five seconds.
"Blaze is really effective at pushing the fight, his Jet Propulsion makes him potent at engaging the enemy team and when he lights his Oil Spills on fire his sustain can be very hard to deal with" Martin said. "So naturally he does well with heroes who are good at staying in fights. I personally enjoy playing with an Uther support as his stun combos really well with keeping enemies within my oil spills for their full duration. The armor Uther provides with his healing also works well with Blaze’s own healing sustain inside ignite oil."
Blaze's two Heroic abilities let him choose between a more defensive and offensive style. The first, Bunker Drop, follows in the footsteps of Terran engineers. After 0.5 seconds, a Bunker with 1300 health is deployed that Blaze and his allies can enter and exit at will. Players inside the Bunker gain access to Flamethrower, which deals 179 damage to enemies in a line, while exiting grants 25 armor for two seconds. The Bunker lasts 10 seconds or until destroyed, and has a 40-second cooldown.
The second Heroic ability, Combustion, deals large damage over time in an area. Blaze channels for up to 2.6 seconds, slowing his movement speed by 50 percent while channeling. At the end of the channel, Combustion slows nearby enemies by 60 percent and deals 48 damage to them every 0.5 seconds, for a duration depending on how long the ability was channeled, ranging from one second up to a maximum of five. The ability has an 80-second cooldown.
Take a look at some of Firebat's original concept art from StarCraft in the gallery below: