A Look at Heroes of the Storm’s Death Inviting King Leoric

Step aside, Jack, because the real Skeleton King has arrived. King Leoric has entered the Nexus chewing gum and swinging mace, and he's all out of gum. As part of Heroes of The Storm's ongoing Eternal Conflict—and it is really beginning to feel like an eternity, Leoric is the latest in the Diablo-themed line-up. The Butcher may have been menacing, but it is King Leoric you will learn to avoid because he just won't die. 

    

Literally. I mean, come on, he's a Skeleton King. He already died once. 

    

Like the great Teddy Roosevelt before him, King Leoric walks and carries a big stick. Skeletal Swing (his “Q” ability) will be your primary damage dealer, sweeping in a wide arc and slowing enemies for 2.5 seconds. This does double damage to non-Heroic characters, making him a perfect fit for some front-line lane action.

    

King Leoric's second ability is Drain Hope, something he must have learned from my ex-girlfriend. A ghostly hand reaches out and grabs a Hero's soul, draining him for up to 25 percent of his maximum Health while also healing you for the same. While this is great to initiate during 1v1 or even team fights, you are slowed by 20 percent as a result. Sucking the life out of someone takes its toll, doesn't it, Karen? 

Wraith Walk, which sounds like a fund-raising campaign for people suffering from being a ghost, allows Leoric to separate from his body and move with increased speed for 2.5 seconds. When the timer is up (or you press “E” again) his physical body will warp to the wraith's location. This is a handy escape ability, though your physical body remains immobile in the process. Timing is essential for this ability, as I have died many times to bring you this information.

Speaking of death, or in this case un-death, King Leoric's primary trait is Undying. Unlike most characters in Heroes of the Storm, Leoric will remain as a ghost on the battlefield once slain, floating around like a menacing Casper. Once the timer reaches zero, Leoric will respawn at his current location instead of home base. In addition, Leoric still has access to his abilities while in this state. Skeletal swing can still slow down enemies but deals no damage, because ghost logic. Drain Hope can heal you and help reduce your death timer, allowing you to respawn quicker.

This mechanic has resulted in many players proceeding to the boundary of death without caution. As with Diablo, King Leoric is a character whose death isn't as significant as the average hero. Some have interpreted that as meaning that dying often is the proper way to play him, and end up feeding the opposing team a nice, crunchy dinner. Don't be one of these people, please. That is, unless you're playing against me.

Rounding out the list are King Leoric's Heroic abilities, Entomb and March of the Black King. Entomb is definitely the more trolling of the two, as it creates three narrow walls around your opponent, leaving just a Hero and Skeleton to do battle. As fun as that sounds, I don't find Leoric doing enough damage one on one to make it worthwhile. March of the Black King, however, packs a wallop. Swinging his mace three times (while Unstoppable, I might add) and healing for each Hero hit, this is perfect for ending intense team fights where the opposing team foolishly huddles together. Coupled with the healing factor, this can also help King Leoric get out of a jam and keep swinging like an aging but athletic former baseball player.  

    

Don't ask me how he swings that giant mace with no muscles. Maybe ghost magic? Now that I think about it, he was a pretty easy boss, too. Then again, I think I was playing on the lowest difficulty because Diablo 3 is a scary game.