Diablo is a powerful Warrior that's incredibly good at initiating a team fight. With access to two stuns, life siphoning and a Trait that reduces his death timer, he remains a real threat throughout the course of any match. Unlike Muradin or Johanna, he lacks the base health to stay in fights for a long period of time. However, he has the ability to control an encounter due to Overpower (which flips an enemy over his head) or Shadow Charge, which can often result in enemies running away. Key to successful Diablo play is to know when to engage and when to retreat, while a second Warrior accompanying can result in a terrifying team.
Updated: 12 December 2018
Quick resurrection due to his Black Soulstone Trait
He has absolutely no mobility unless he uses Shadow Charge
He has two powerful stuns that can disrupt enemy Heroes
Low base health for a tank and so he relies heavily on Talent upgrades
He has easy initiation that's very strong in the right hands
If he's caught out of position, he has little means of escaping
Fantastic at body-blocking
Weak without a fully stacked Soulstone.
Black Soulstone (Trait) – Collecting souls will help Diablo become naturally tanky thanks to it providing incremental increases to his health. As a front-liner, this is undeniably important. The ability to quickly resurrect if you’re holding the maximum of 100 souls means death is much less punishing, but keep in mind that souls are consumed once this occurs. This means you’ll need to begin stacking souls again once you’re resurrected and if you die without the maximum stacks, you'll suffer a full penalty to respawn. Be sure to always acquire 100 souls as quickly as possible before diving into any team fight.
Shadow Charge (Q) – There might be few things scarier than seeing a Lord of Terror rushing at you. Although it used to stun by default, Shadow Charge now only knocks a player back and provides movement speed. If Diablo knocks an enemy into terrain, they are stunned for 1 second. If used correctly, it's an incredibly powerful ability that not only allows you to pick out a key target, but if combined with the stun can offer an invaluable window of opportunity for your team to follow up.
Fire Stomp (W) – With a manageable mana cost and low cooldown you’ll end up using Fire Stomp quite often. It can help clear waves, but more importantly, puts out moderate damage once you find yourself in the middle of the enemy team during a fight. What's particularly interesting about Fire Stomp is that after the initial wave, the flames will return to Diablo dealing additional (and slightly higher damage). This ability might be straightforward, but there's complexity in the fact the returning wave heals Diablo for a significant amount, and you'll need to take this into account in order to maximize your sustain.
Overpower (E) – Diablo is all about being a warrior and providing utility for his team: Overpower fits that theme. This will re-position your target behind you, as well as stun them briefly. This can also interrupt channels, but will often be used to isolate an enemy for your team to burst down. It’s also no coincidence that the cooldown is the same as Shadow Charge; the two combo together perfectly. If you can, try to walk into a player, use Overpower and then Shadow Charge against them to knock them back from their team (or into terrain).
Apocalypse (R) – A global stun on the entire enemy team can ensure a successful team fight when timed properly. The damage isn’t incredibly high, but not inconsequential either. Due to the long cooldown, you’ll want to avoid using this just to catch out one foe, unless that kill can be game-changing. There is a delay to allow enemies time to react, but in a chaotic fight, Apocalypse is undeniably strong especially if the enemy team is grouped together.
Lightning Breath (R) – This is one of the signature abilities from the Diablo franchise, and can pack quite a punch if you’re able to get off the full channel. If used at the right time, and in the right location, Lightning Breath can shut down the enemy team incredibly quickly to now only slow them huge amounts, but to also deal damage and allow your team to dive or retreat. In the current meta, it's arguably stronger than Apocalpyse.
Level 1: Feast on Fear
Feast on Fear provides Diablo with some much needed immediate sustain every team he stuns an opponent. It returns 12% of his maximum health over 3 seconds, and if you stun an opponent twice, provides significant healing.
Variable: It might not sound like a strong Talent, but Devil's Due is undeniably good. Allowing Diablo to increase the effects of Regeneration Globes and Healing Fountains by 2% per Black Soul Stone he has, it ensures he gains incredible sustain when tapping, or fighting in lane. At 100 Souls, that's a 200% increase in the value of both healing effects, ensuring he can stay alive for very lengthy periods of time.
Level 4: Souls to the Flame
Souls to the Flame provides Souls every time your Fire Stomp hits a Hero 3 times. Not only that, it also heals you for additional health (1.3% per soul you have). For sustain, and quick Soul acquisition, Souls of the Flame is great.
Level 7: Malevolence
Malevolence provides Diablo with an empowered basic attack after using any ability. With two charges, it allows him to deal a burst of damage after his Shadow Charge > Basic Attack > Overpower > Basic Attack.
Variable: For greater survivability and AOE pressure, grab Eternal Flames. Every time you stun an enemy Hero you gain an additional charge of Fire Stomp, allowing you to cast it, stun a foe, and cast it again for major AOE havoc.
Level 10: Lightning Breath
Lightning Breath is incredibly strong right now, not only because it makes Unstoppable, but because its width and length combined with its massive slow locks down entire teams. Diablo might be vulnerable during it, and its turning speed might be slow, but it can win most team-fights.
Level 13: Devastating Charge
Devastating Charge allows Diablo to boost the collision damage of Shadow Charge by 100%. Each subsequent collision increases this by 15%, up to 75%. For an instant hit of damage, if you can reliably land your Shadow Charge stuns against terrain, it's incredible for an opening burst.
Level 16: Domination
Reducing the cooldown of Overpower allows you to cause significant misery on opponents. You can Overpower > Shadow Charge > Overpower for a huge amount of misery. Domination is amazing.
Variable: For control, and if you took Eternal Flames, pick-up Debilitating Flames. The slow this provides (5% per flame that hits an opponent, up to 50%) combined with the damage mitigation (50% if Heroes are slowed by 25%) ensures Diablo gains amazing survivability.
Level 20: Hellgate
Diablo lacks mobility outside of his Shadow Charge so taking Hellgate not only provides an instant teleport but also places a Rune on the floor that detonates after 1.75 seconds, stunning anyone caught in it. Whether you use Hellgate to escape, or engage aggresively it's a brilliant talent for zoning and/or chaining stuns together.
This list of tips and tricks are just a handful of things we think will help your Diablo play. We'll continue to add to the list as required and if you have any tips you'd like to share, let us know in the comments below and we'll place them here.
1. Overpower can throw enemies over your gates to almost certain death during early levels.
2. Overpower plus Charge can push an enemy deep into your team - it's the most common combination for zoning out an enemy player.
3. Use your survivability to body block squishy allies. Diablo is particularly "tanky" late game when team fighting.
4. If you take it, try to always use Lightning Breath in a team fight when a group of enemies are gathered together. It'll deal maximum damage.
5. Even though you're a warrior, Diablo is only "tanky" if he's accompanied by a Support and his team. You're vulnerable by yourself and without Souls.
6. Try to always ensure you have 100 Souls so that if you do die, you can get back into the fight quickly.
7. Be sure to use Overpower > Shadow Charge against squishy targets such as Jaina or Kael'thas. They'll take heavy damage and it will allow your team to finish them off.
8. Use Apocalypse on confined Battlegrounds when the enemy team are grouped together so that they panic and/or have few ways to escape safely.
9. Diablo excels on Battlegrounds where fights occur in close quarters. Not only does this allow Lightning Breath to cause maximum havoc, but also allows you to follow up with Hellgate and Fire Stomp.
10. Try to always walk up to enemy players and open with Overpower. You can then knock them away with Shadow Charge. You'll need to use line of sight - grasses and vents - to truly get the most from this method.
11. It's often worth backing off when Shadow Charge and/or Overpower are on cooldown. Without both available Diablo isn't as much of a threat.
To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our Heroes of the Storm Game Page.