Heroes of the Storm Build Guide For Winning With Johanna The Crusader

Johanna's Vitals

Warrior
Melee
HP: 1000 (+230 per level)
HP Regen: 2.078 (+0.477 per level)
Mana: 500 (+10 per level)
Mana Regen: 3 (+0.098 per level)
Attack Damage: 45 (+9 per level)
Attack Speed: 0.91

Johanna, the prototypical tank, excels in every aspect you would expect of the role. Her crowd control and sustained are nearly second to none. What she lacks in mobility and damage, she makes up for in sheer dominance of the battlefield.

 

Johanna's Abilities

Q – Punish

Mana Cost: 40 
Cooldown: 8 sec (Area of Effect) (Frontal Cleave)
Deal 248 (58 + 10 per level) damage and slow enemies by 60% decaying over 2 seconds.

Punish does just as it name alludes to, punishing anyone who comes too close, not by dealing damage, but by hitting with a debilitating slow effect that's useful in those all-important chase downs of healers or squishy damage dealers. Its range is its biggest drawback, only having a distance as large as your auto attack. This skill is best used after first pulling opponents in with "Condemn".

W – Condemn

Mana Cost: 50
Cooldown: 10 sec (Area of Effect)
After 1 second, you pull nearby enemies toward you, stunning them for 0.25 seconds and dealing 120 (25 + 5 per level) damage.

Condemn is Johanna’s trademark ability. Activating it causes a ring to surround her and after a short delay pulls any enemy caught in its area of effect towards her. Its many uses start with being able to interrupt several Heroics, including E.T.C.'s powerful "Mosh Pit", turning the tide in any team fight. Also, combined correctly with teammate heroics such as Gazlowe’s “Grav-O-Bomb 3000”, Jaina’s “Ring of Frost”, or Nova’s “Precision Strikes”, several enemies can be hit by catastrophic damage.

E – Shield Glare

Mana Cost: 45
Cooldown: 12 sec (Frontal Cone)
Deal 130 (54 + 4 per level) damage to enemies and cause them to miss their next 2 Basic Attacks within 4 seconds.

Here we have Johanna’s one and only long ranged ability, Shield Glare is a frontal cone whose strength again is found in its effect rather than its worth in damage. Its use can be found in individual and team sustainability, blinding opponents causing them to miss their next two basic attacks and leaving them to rely only to their abilities for the duration.

R – Blessed Shield (Heroic)

Mana Cost: 90
Cooldown: 60 sec (Skill Shot)
Deal 250 (79 + 9 per level) damage and stun the first enemy hit for 2 seconds. Blessed Shield then bounces to 2 nearby enemies, dealing 125 (39.5 + 4.5 per level) damage and stunning them each for 1 second.

Blessed Shield is my personal choice. This Heroic is another potent CC for an already heavy CC Hero. It’s a skill shot that if landed can cause havoc and spell doom for anyone hit by it. A great tool for interrupting Heroics such as LiLi’s “Jug of 1,000 Cups” and Valla’s “Strafe”. The drawback is it’s a skill shot. Miss and it's a waste.

R – Falling Sword (Heroic)

Mana Cost: 100
Cooldown: 80 sec (Area of Effect)
You leap towards an area. While in the air, you can steer the landing location by moving. After 2 seconds you land, dealing 550 (141.5 + 21.5 per level) damage to nearby enemies and knocking them into the air.

If landed precisely Falling Sword can prove deadly to any interruptible Heroic, and can be seconded as a useful escape or a hard initiation. Damage output is much higher than “Blessed Shield” and can be increased with the Level 20 Talent “Heaven’s Fury”.

D – Iron Skin (Trait)

Mana Cost: 25
Cooldown: 20 sec
Become Unstoppable and gain a Shield that absorbs 1343 (250.5 + 57.5 per level) damage for 4 seconds.

Here is where Johanna gains her sustain. This activated trait applies a shield, giving you that oh so important mitigation every tank worth its weight needs. On an already short cool down it is Johanna’s main means of survivability and one of her most important skills, and if 20 seconds feels like too long of a wait she also has two talents to help with that; at Level 7 “The Crusade Marches On” and at Level 13 "Hold Your Ground”

Johanna's Talents

 

Talents: Level 1

Reinforce (Rating: 5/5)

Using Basic Abilities reduces the next Basic Attack against you by 50%. Maximum 2 stacks.

Here is where Johanna’s sustain begins to come into play. A talent which finds its usefulness from beginning to end in any battleground. As the first one in and last one out, this talent gives Johanna the sustainability she needs to harass and stay in during team fights over position and objectives.

Knight Takes Pawn (Rating: 3/5)

Condemn deals 480 (100 + 20 per level) additional damage to Minions and Mercenaries and stuns them for 4 seconds.

Not a bad choice for early game, during those important lane moments. However, it doesn’t find much use in late game when your main purpose in team fights is to harass and control, rather than siege. W'ell leave that to the Azmodan’s and Zagara’s of the world.

Righteous Smash (Rating: 3/5)

Punish restores 10 Mana per enemy hit.

A talent in which its purpose is to replenish your mana. The only problem is the cost and range of the ability needed in order to gain it. A short ranged ability with a cost of 40 mana means you would have to hit at least 5 enemies to gain anything in return over the cost which in most cases is rare, but on the plus side it does discount the cost of your one slow depending on however many targets are hit. It may help you stay in lane, too.

Regeneration Master (Rating: 2/5)

Increases Health Regeneration by 4 per second. Every 3 Regeneration Globes gathered increases this bonus by 4.

Can be useful in very early game, but late game it becomes almost a non-factor, with late game damage outweighing the regeneration benefit.

 

Talents: Level 4

Amplified Healing (Rating: 4/5)
 
Increases regeneration effects and all healing received by 30%.

An easy choice for anyone teamed with a dedicated healer. It's strong for Heroes League or Team League, but can prove useless in those quick matches when blizzard decides to team you up with no support characters.

Roar (Rating: 2/5)

Increases Punish damage by 50%.

A damage talent for a hero who lacks in the category, an average choice for those quick matches when mitigation is a lower priority and more damage from you can only help the situation.

Eternal Retaliation (Rating: 3/5)

Condemn's cooldown is lowered by 0.75 seconds for each enemy affected. Maximum of 10 targets.

Another strong talent very early in game, one of Johanna’s top abilities has its cooldown reduced by 0.75 seconds for every enemy hit, which may not seem like a lot, but at the maximum 10 targets can come to a grand total of 7.5 seconds shaved off a 10 second CC. If sustainability and mitigation are not a strong issue, then there is not much drawback here.

Laws of Hope (Rating: 4/5)

Regenerate 21 (2 + 1 per level) Health per second. Activate to heal 20% of your max Health over 4 seconds.

Laws of Hope is the only self-heal available to Johanna. It's a small amount in the regen department, but a big plus when it comes to sustain on its activation 20% on your maximum health pool during late game which can really keep your team in the game during any team fight or push to the core.

 

Talents: Level 7

Battle Momentum (Rating: 3/5)

Basic Attacks reduce Ability cooldowns by 0.5 seconds.

The decent choice for any tank to possess especially one with as many CC’s as Johanna. Its only problem is Johanna’s slow attack speed tied for second with Diablo, Stitches, and Thrall, and only ahead of Tycus for slowest attack speed in game. However, if skillfully played can prove quite useful.

Sins Exposed (Rating: 3/5)

Shield Glare marks enemies for 4 seconds. The next time any ally damages them, they take 150 (36 + 6 per level) extra damage and the mark is removed.

A good choice adding a second effect to a very useful ability, and effective choice if your team makeup needs that extra bit of help in damage.

The Crusade Marches On (Rating: 5/5)

Basic and Heroic Abilities lower the cooldown of Iron Skin by 1.5 seconds.

This is the talent of choice in this tier, shortening the cool down of your strongest mitigation tool, aiding to keeping you in fights.

Conviction (Rating: 4/5)

Condemn increases your Movement Speed by 25% for 1 second.

This is another great talent to add to Johanna’s already harasser type nature. This talent increases your movement speed after a Condemn which could find itself quite useful for chaining those hard to reach “Punishes”

 

Talents: Level 10

Falling Sword (Rating: 4/5)

You leap towards an area. While in the air, you can steer the landing location by moving. After 2 seconds you land, dealing 550 (141.5 + 21.5 per level) damage to nearby enemies and knocking them into the air.

Now we find ourselves at those crucial “Heroics”. In this department Johanna doesn't disappoint. First off we have Falling Sword, the common choice for most teams, it serves as a great initiator and escape. Its damage is the higher of the two heroics and can be increased with the level 20 Talent “Heaven’s Fury” It also finds itself serving as a solid but hard to land interrupt. With any team built with average CC, you can’t go wrong with “Falling Sword”.

Blessed Shield (Rating: 3/5)

Deal 250 (79 + 9 per level) damage and stun the first enemy hit for 2 seconds. Blessed Shield then bounces to 2 nearby enemies, dealing 125 (39.5 + 4.5 per level) damage and stunning them for 1 second.

Option two, Blessed Shield, is another Heroic you can’t go wrong with especially for those quick match teams lacking in the interrupts or stuns department. On a shorter cool down then “Falling Sword” its usefulness stems from its ability to auto target and chain to two other heroes in addition to the first interrupting any channeled abilities, or stunning the opposing team's healer long enough to give your team the time it needs to take control of the battle. The biggest drawback to this Heroic is it’s a skill shot. If you miss, it's useless. Level 20 Talents increase its range, bounce distance, and maximum number of enemies it bounces to by two. Choosing this ability should be based on team composition.

 

Talents: Level 13

Burning Rage (Rating: 2/5)

Deal 10 damage per second to nearby enemies.

This mid game talent called “Burning Rage” is meant for one thing: to help do as much damage as possible while you’re in the thick of things. Again this all falls under your team needs. Yes, it helps in damage, but if damage overall is a problem perhaps we should leave that up to those who can pump out way more than Johanna, and give them the time they desperately need in battle by supporting them with peels.

Hold Your Ground (Rating: 5/5)

Increases Iron Skin's Shield by 20%, and if the Shield is destroyed by damage the cool down is reduced by 4 seconds.

A great talent in this tier, “Hold Your Ground” increases Johanna’s great sustainability by first increasing the amount of her Shield, then cutting the cool down by 4 seconds if the enemy team manages to break it. It gives her the opportunity to really keep her sustainably at a higher level than most tanks.

Subdue (Rating: 2/5)

Increases Punish's slow to 80% decaying over 3 seconds.

Subdue is a talent great for chase and above average initiation. It increasing "Punish" slow by 20% and adds on an additional second can prove the difference between life and death. But again we find ourselves with that old problem… "Punish" range.  land it and your golden! Miss it and you’re going to find yourself thinking “Why did I take Hold Your Ground?".

Spell Shield (Rating: 2/5)

Upon taking Ability Damage, reduce that damage and further Ability Damage by 50% for 2 seconds. Can only trigger once every 30 seconds.

This talent looks better on paper then in practice, with a 30 second cool down and an activation on taking ability damage you could find yourself waiting for it to be up a lot more than initiating. Keep in mind most key moments won’t wait around for your cool down to be up.

 

Talents: Level 16

Holy Renewal (Rating: 3/5)

Every enemy Hero affected by Shield Glare heals you for 250 (107.5 + 7.5 per level).

Holy Renewal, a secondary heal which could become quite effective during team fights, can even provide survival during escapes. 

Fanaticism (Rating: 3/5)

While Iron Skin is active, gain 8% Movement Speed each time you take damage. Stacks up to 40%.

Fanaticism provides initiation, chase down, and retreat. Movement on an already slow hero can prove useful in many situations.

Blessed Hammer (Rating: 1/5)

Condemn also creates a hammer that spirals around you, dealing 90 (42.5 + 2.5 per level) damage to enemies it hits.

One of the few poor talents in Johanna’s toolbox, the damage is sub-par, effect is very short, and not really worth the point that could be better used elsewhere.

Imposing Presence (Rating: 3/5)

Enemies that attack you have their Attack Speed slowed by 50%.

A great choice against heavy damage teams who rely a lot on auto attacks or healing via auto attack (i.e. Falstad, Valla, Raynor, and Illidan).

 

Talents: Level 20

Heaven's Fury (Rating: 4/5)

While in the air, holy bolts rain down on enemies dealing 165 (32 + 7 per level) damage and reducing the cool down of Falling Sword by 2 seconds for each enemy hit.

A talent intended to bolster a great heroic in the damage department, and reward you with a reduction in its cooldown for landing it properly. However we find ourselves again in the situational position; is damage or survival more crucial?

Radiating Faith (Rating: 3/5)

Increases Blessed Shield's range by 25%, the distance the shield bounces by 25%, and maximum enemies hit by 2.

A nice bonus to an already solid Heroic, increasing the range of a hero with well below average range is never a bad thing, and increasing the number of targets by two in those pivotal late game battles if Blessed Shield is your Heroic of choice.

Indestructible (Rating: 4/5)

Upon taking fatal damage, gain a Shield equal to your maximum Health for 5 seconds. This ability has a 120 second cool down.

The talent of choice for most players and with good reason. It serves as an instant res and provides you with position to get right back into the fight. I would however suggest taking this when your team make up has a dedicated healer or when longer drawn out fights are proving to be more important to the overall victory of the match.

Storm Shield (Rating: 3/5)

Activate to give all nearby allied Heroes a Shield for 20% of their max Health for 3 seconds.

And finally we come to Storm Shield. The last talent in this tier doesn’t disappoint, giving your team a health bar advantage late game is never a bad thing. Can this point be spent elsewhere and be more beneficial? Perhaps. It again comes down to situation. Heavy AOE damage and CC situations can prove this talent to be quite useful.
 

Closing Comments

This guide’s purpose is to help inform those who have just purchased Johanna, looking to do so, or are looking to educate themselves on more efficient ways of countering her. It’s an early build and I’m sure changes are already under consideration, so take everything with a grain of salt as nothing here is set in stone. Remember to always observe your team composition and needs. Your job as a tank is not normally to do damage, it’s to absorb damage, control and initiate fights, and above all keep your team mates alive.

Feel free to leave any questions you have in the comments section and we'll assist you. Enjoy your time in the Nexus!