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How to rank up? Experience Basics. Part 1

This article is the first of the ‘’ How to rank up? Experience Basics ‘’ . The main goal of the series is to help everyone understand experience in Heroes of the Storm better – why and when to soak, why and when to look for kills, how to get ahead early and stay ahead over the course of the game, how to give yourself the best chance to comeback when playing from behind and much more.

1. First things first – why does experience (xp) matter?

Gaining experience points equals gaining levels, which results in unlocking talents upon reaching levels 4, 7, 10, 13, 16 and 20. The maximum level is 30 and for each level from 1 to 30 heroes increase their stats — HP, Damage, and HP + mana regeneration per second. These are the experience point required to get to level 20.You can see the full chart at

Heroes of the Storm uses a very unique system when it comes to gaining levels — experience is shared between all members of the team. That means it doesn’t matter which hero soaks or which hero gets a kill – they all contribute towards the global experience of your team.

Being ahead in experience allows your team to force favorable fights or take objectives without having to fight (usually enemies decide not to contest if they are not on the same talent tier), but keep in mind if you are not a full level ahead you don’t gain anything – you only get the benefits once you level up. If one team is at level 12 and the other is 12 and a half, there is no advantage in stats or talent tiers. In order to make use of the advantage you need to reach level 13 first and then use it to establish dominance.

2. Our first topic will be Passive experience. Both teams start to receive 23 XP per second at 00:35 game time, which is 35 seconds after the gates open. The only way to get ahead in passive xp is by destroying a fort or keep which provides to your team a stacking 20% (4.6 XP/s) bonus. This means passive xp is somewhat tied to structure xp, which we will cover in the next article.

2.1 Passive xp on different maps

The later the game goes, the higher the chance passive xp has an impact, because if a fort is destroyed early and the game goes late it means that the 20% bonus has more time to accumulate you a lead over your opponents.

On some maps that usually reach late game, like Volskaya Foundry, Infernal Shrines and Alterac Pass, destroying a fort early might secure you just enough of a lead in the later stages to take a favorable fight during an important objective.

Smaller maps with only two lanes and lower average game time like Battlefield of Eternity and Braxis Holdout usually create situations where passive xp is irrelevant.

There is no way to get a lead on Towers of Doom when it comes to passive xp , because converting an enemy bell tower doesn’t count as destroying it.

2.3 Examples

2.3 A

Let’s look at a very extreme example – one team kills all 3 enemy forts before minute 9 on Dragon Shire. The following table shows the game state at 15:00, just before the game ends.

One team has an advantage when it comes to passive xp – 5826 experience points. After level 16 and until level 20 gaining a level requires you to collect 5600xp. This means if a fight is taken at the exact moment passive experience gave you a full level lead – it was useful. In almost every other case it doesn’t make a big difference – in the games where you are far ahead your xp lead mainly comes from kills and in other games the passive xp number is not high enough to secure a full level lead.

2.3 B

This next example includes a fort taken at minute 12 and a keep at 12:30.Map is Volskaya Foundry and the following table shows the game state at minute 15:00, as you can see one of the teams is 800 points away from level 20.

The difference is 1559 xp points and it took 3 minutes to accumulate to this amount. The number is too small to be relevant at this point of the game, because a full level is 5600 xp as previously mentioned.

2.3 C

Our last example shows red team destroying the first fort at minute 7 and blue team destroying fort at 10 + keep at 11. The table shows the situation around 14:20 game time.

It takes a few minutes to equalize the stats even with the bonus from fort + keep vs only fort, because red team took it far earlier.

2.4 Conclusions

Most games are too short for passive xp to make a real difference. It can help you reach the next talent tier if you have a lead in any of the other areas of xp and you combine both leads to a full level difference, but it almost never does so on its own. My advice is not to worry passive xp too much – the real benefit of destroying a fort is getting catapult pressure in that lane.

— Sasho Andreev — player of «Sharks» and captain «Hype Pew Pew» (Heroes Lounge: Division 1).

P.S. If you are interested in coaching , you can contact me on discord, first hour is free. Good luck on the battlefield!

Discord: n0hvn#2331

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