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June 27, 2018

The Standard

This is the standard Arthas build to run in the vast majority of games. I've mained Arthas in Hero League since open Beta and I do love to mess around with Deathlord/Immortal Coil to poke at annoying high mobility heroes, Icy Talons/Rune Tap for solo killing fools, or Sindragosa for snowballing a game. There is, however, always a "best practice" cookie cutter build for him no matter what because of the fundamental strengths and weaknesses of his character that exist at all times.



The only places where you would really deviate from the standard build would be at 1, 7, and 20. You can go Rime at level 1 if they have a dangerous slow AA hero (and no rapid AA heroes) *note this is even better to consider now since Arthas lost his baseline armor. Grab Immortal coil at 7 if they don't have much CC - it's excellent for sustain and you don't risk wasting it at the wrong time as can sometimes happen with Icebound Fortitude. At level 20 you can pick whichever talent you think will win you the end-game teamfight most effectively (Legion of Northrend for sustain, Anti-Magic Shell for surviving burst, Speed Pants for a dive/flank to kill the enemy team before they hit level 20, aka a cheeky way to snowball to a win).



Some Arthas tips:

-Positioning well on Arthas (as well as immobile tanks in general) is a relationship of distance between you and the kill target, as well as you and your team's damage dealers. The same thing matters defensively as well - make sure their tanks/damage dealers are not able to get on your squishies based on where you are positioning.

-Arthas can almost never tank all 5 of the enemy team at once so you must initiate carefully compared to other warriors. Sometimes the right play is to create a sideline fight - pop Ghouls and try to create a distraction for 2-3 of the enemy team while your team takes an advantaged fight elsewhere. This takes a lot of teamfight awareness (and higher skill teammates to make full use of the time you are buying). Keep in mind the above positioning tips when considering this play.

-Bodyblock. Arthas' E aura makes for one of the easiest ways to bodyblock heroes and secure kills (or peel) in the whole game.

-Arthas' E aura causes you to run out of mana really fast. Practice managing it by doing things like turning it off while waiting for a boss stun to happen or turning it off before you clear a minion wave, mounting, and waiting for your minions to finish clearing for you. The more aware you are, the more mana you will have when it crucially matters.

-Auto-attacking first and then using D immediately allows for max damage.

-The two primary ways to engage with your base kit are land a W and then get in E aura range, or get in E aura range and then land a W after they are slowed. Both of these methods are helped by being mounted as much as possible. Z is your friend.

-People get into a bad habit with W from trying to finish the stacking quest. Some roots aren't worth throwing out. Some roots aren't worth following up on. 

-After completing the W quest, try to cast at max range more often - you can root with the trail of frost and/or potentially root more heroes at once.

-Generally don't ever use W on minions, mercenaries, or other creeps for damage unless you are purposely burning all of your mana so that you can hearth right afterwards. It is not mana efficient for damage and chances are that you would rather have that cooldown available to engage/peel against a HERO within the next few seconds.

-Don't be afraid to use Q offensively against heroes/team comps that that don't sustain well, especially if you have a sustain healer on your side or if you are in the solo lane.



 
1
Frost Presence
Quest: Root enemy Heroes with Howling Blast. Reward: After rooting 5 Heroes, Howling Blast's cooldown is reduced by 2 seconds. Reward: After rooting 10 Heroes, Howling Blast's range is increased by 30%. Reward: After rooting 20 Heroes, Howling Blast also roots enemies in its path.
Rime can be good against big AA's such as Greymane/Zul'jin in the absence of fast AA's such as Tracer, especially if main tanking. Eternal Hungers can be good if they have a front line you're not afraid of walking up to (i.e. not Garrosh or Diablo) or you are soloing against a hero like Sonya/Blaze/Rexxar. 30 stacks in a game is a good benchmark to hit.
4
Frozen Wastes
Frozen Tempest Mana cost reduced by 4 per second. Quest: Damage enemy Heroes with Frozen Tempest. Reward: After damaging enemy Heroes 150 times with Frozen Tempest, the Movement and Attack Speed slows of Frozen Tempest last an extra 1.5 seconds against enemy Heroes.
Icy Talons + Rune Tap if trying to win 1v1's in the solo lane. Deathlord + Immortal Coil for high poke/sustain and you're against a low CC comp.
7
Icebound Fortitude
Activate to gain 25 Armor, reducing damage taken by 25%, and reduce the duration of Stuns, Slows, and Roots against Arthas by 75% for 3 seconds.
Icy Talons + Rune Tap if trying to win 1v1's in the solo lane. Deathlord + Immortal Coil for high poke/sustain and you're against a low CC comp.
10
Army of the Dead
Summons Ghouls that last 15 seconds, deal 20 damage, and have 1060 health. Sacrifice Ghouls to heal for 267 Health.
Sindragosa if you can snowball the game. Works best if they have a low mobility comp and you have a double tank comp.
13
Shattered Armor
Enemy Heroes hit by Howling Blast have their Armor reduced by 15 for 4 seconds.
Biting Cold is good for waveclear or shrine clear on Infernal Shrines. Adds more consistent dps than Frost Strike if you ever go Eternal Hunger *note with new patch that Frost Strike could actually be good for getting really high stack numbers.
16
Remorseless Winter
Enemy Heroes that remain within Frozen Tempest for 3 seconds are rooted for 1.25 seconds. This effect only happen once every 10 seconds.
Take Frostmourne Feeds if you went Eternal Hunger. Embrace Death is strong if you don't need the extra CC of Remorseless Winter and especially if you went Sindragosa (bigger heal when low HP is nice).
20
Legion of Northrend
3 additional Ghouls are created. Ghouls heal for an additional 50% and last 5 seconds longer.
Think about which 20 talent will help you win the last team fight of the game based on the match so far. Legion of Northrend is very balanced and reliable. If you took Sindragosa, Absolute Zero is pretty much mandatory. Death's Advance can catch people off guard easily and helps with dodging skillshots. Anti-Magic Shield is helpful against AoE mages that delete you or your ghouls and can be a great way to bait out a lot of abilities if you go in ham.
Balance Patch - 6/27/18
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