Abathur has been my favorite hero ever since I got into this game, I just love how a hero can be everywhere and drastically affect the outcome of the game depending on how he is played. Abathur has the Ability to get an Experience lead for the team while supporting them in fights. Considering fights as 4v5 isn’t the right approach in these situations.
Playing with an Abathur
Don’t try to go for early 5v5 fights specially on level 1. (Smiley face, haunted mines, sky temple) – This is not a good thing to do in the first place, I see no point in justifying it even if you don’t have an Abathur.
If there is a hat on you, you aren’t invincible
If there is a hat on you, you can be a little brave
There is a fine line between these statements, don’t be afraid to go into a 2v1 with an Abathur if you have an escape available, but neither should you jump into the same fight if you cannot secure the kill without dying yourself.
If you are on a melee try to get close so that Abathur can land his W.
If your Abathur leaves you that doesn’t mean that you should instantly disengage, a lot of us do this to refresh our cooldowns so we can re-shield you. I will leave you and don’t reconnect in 4 seconds it means that you no longer need to fight there and need to get out.
If your Abathur has laid down a Minefield (Toxic nest [W]) then try to bait the enemy to walk over it.
Most of all, don’t flame for fights being 4v5, it might look like it sucks fighting like that but in truth, the Abathur is doing a lot more than you think. If the Abathur thinks that the fights are not going in their favor he will pick Ultimate evolution, so don’t say GG cuz you lost a few early fights.
There is no fixed build on Abathur, you need to adapt your build depending on the team composition. So without further adieu here are the various viable Abathur builds:
When you have a strong Melee frontline:
Pressurised Glands – Allows for a lot of AOE damage since the melee character will mostly be in the middle of things.
Adrenal Overload – Most melee heroes have great basic attack damage, this is a great boost for it.
Needlespine (switch for mule on Blackheart’s Bay, Sky Temple, Haunted Mines) –
This is a great poke tool and can do a significant amount of damage.
Monstrosity if team fights are going well upto that point.
Ultimate Evolution if we have been losing team fights.
Soma Transference – I believe this talent might be bugged, however it is still really good.
Envenomed spines – Gives you a bit of control in fights and chasing potential.
Hivemind – “always pick” in this build. There is nothing better than 2 talented Symbiotes
When the team has mostly ranged heroes (QM) then you have to adapt since your symbiote won’t be as much effective as these heroes tend to stay at a long range. In this case I switch to a Hybrid build.
Survival instincts/ Regenerative Microbes – Depending on whether or not the team has a healer pick up Regenerative Microbes. It will help you push as well as provide minor healing.
Adrenal Overload/ Sustained Carapace – Go with sustained Carapace if you pick up regenerative microbes, else go for Adrenal overload.
Needlespine/ Networked Carapace – Go with Networked carapace if the other Carapace talents were picked, other wise Needlespine is great since it will allow you to have your Q have enough range to hit heroes if you symbiote ranged heroes.
Monstrosity if team fights are going well upto that point. (If picking Carapace talents monstrosity can be especially effective.)
Ultimate Evolution if we have been losing team fights.
Bombard Strain – If you need to push into structures better and lanes are pushing in your favor.
Assault Strain – If lanes need to be depushed and if you are playing in Tomb of the spider queen.
Locust Brood – 3 Locusts can push really well.
Locust nest/ Evolutionary link – Evolutionary link can help you keep that squishy alive or Locust nest can let you push all 3 lanes.
About Survival Instincts Vs Regenerative Microbes
Survival Instincts: After the nerf to locusts this talent isn’t worth picking in my opinion since the locusts are never meant to solo push. If you are going for a pushing build you need to strengthen a minion wave in order to push. Thus Regenerative microbes along with networked carapace is the correct way to go when trying to play the push build. If you are only buffing the locusts then the minion wave might die before the locusts and the most they will accomplish is delay the enemy’s minion wave.
Playing as Abathur
Soaking & Positioning
This is one of the most important aspects of Abathur. Depending on how good you are your experience gain will either be 5 times as much as others or absolutely crap. So here are the ways to soak XP on Abathur.
- With your body: For this you need to be in the dying minion’s vision range in order to get xp from that minion.
- With your Symbiote[Q]: A symbiote will soak experience just like any other hero normally will. You can use it on minions, assault structures and heroes. It will not work on summons.
- With locusts: Unreliable, they award Xp only on last hit.
- With Mines: Somewhat reliable, they award xp on last hit kill as well but are more likely to kill the minions.
- With monstrosity: Awards xp on killing with last hit (only when not symbioted, if symbioted it soaks like a hero)
In the early to mid game it is really important that you try to soak at least two lanes and you absolutely should. Now here’s how you do it.
You need to be always looking at the mini-map.
When a lane is completely empty:
If you sit in the brush you will receive XP from that wave when it dies. You also need to know where the minion wave is. Once you are in the lane for your while your side of the wave will probably be pushing into the towers due to your locusts. At this point you need to move into bush number 2 which is closer to the towers so that you can still soak XP. You will most likely be soaking in this way when an objective is currently in progress this is the best way to be soaking.
When a lane has an enemy but no ally:
In this case what you need to do is move to that lane and position your self near the gate, This isn’t the best way to soak however you will be able to soak atleast some experience rather than none. Keep looking at the mini map in order to know where the enemy is, if he moves out immediately move closer in order to soak all the experience.
The other method is to use the symbiote. If the enemy is smart he will kill the symbioted minion first to deny the soak and be annoying. But you can just re symbiote in 4 seconds. If the wave is pushing in your favor symbiote the back line of minions. so that you can live for longer. If it is pushign in your towers symbiote the tower that is being attacked and spam your aoe and shield. You can connect and leave the towers to refresh your cooldowns.
When you see two empty lanes:
Move into an empty lane with Deep Tunnel[Z] and symbiote a minion in the other lane. This will allow you to soak two lanes simultaneously.
Now one important thing to note when soaking as Abathur is that, don’t forget about your teammates. If you see a team mate approaching an enemy immediately leave the minion and jump to the ally. This where the multi-tasking aspect of Abathur comes into play. Like I said before, ALWAYS HAVE AN EYE ON THE MINIMAP.
There are different situations that call for different Positions. During objectives be as aggressive as possible and move near to towers and push that lane with a few symbiote cycles on minions then jump to the heroes near the objective and help them out.
If a lane is pushing against you move to that lane and lay a minefield [W] in order to do massive AOE and clear the push. A combination of your [W] and Symbiote’s [W] will be enough to clear out most pushes in 2-3 bursts of [W].
If you wish to push a lane when enemy’s are around it is actually not needed that you get crazy close the the wave, your locusts have pretty big timer just get close enough that they have 40% of their timer remaining at the least and you will be able to push effectively. This comes with Practice the more Abathur games you play the better you will get at positioning correctly.
Every now and then jump to a wave Use [W] -> [Q] twice to thrice and lay a minefield to push. This will allow for your waves to be pushing towards the enemy. 2-3 Symbiote cycles can easily clear out these waves.
This is where you need to make the most use of your global presence. The lanes that are pushing against you are where you need to be there for longer.
If all lanes are in your favor go to the lane that is the least pushed.
Toxic Nests are really good for pushing. Early game use them for warding bushed. Mid game place them to push/depush lanes. Place the mines near the mage minion so that the damage is dealt to all 6 minions. They do AOE damage.
Finally Monstrosity, try to babysit it but not too much, at max stacks it can 1v1 any hero except Illidan I think. It is a monster (pun not intended) when pushing lanes and if left alone is able to take down structures in seconds.
When using the monstrosity for pushing, Don’t let it soak the tower shots, move to the back line, let the minions go forward and then attack the structure.
Thanks for reading about my beloved Slug, I hope you have as much fun playing with him as I do, If you want to see more guides from me I have played sylvanas, muradin and vikigns extensively as well and can write them if you guys like it. Till then try to make Logical Decisions. 🙂