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1.48 MAAR


lOvOl
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Well with the 1.48 patch MAAR took a significant hit in several departments but buffed in one very important one. Overall he is a lot harder to play and typical int builds obviously will not work as well with him anymore, however he can still be a good hero with the right build.

 

First of all, MAAR had his SAP ability reduced to its original level of 150% from 200% in patch 1.47. This makes double sapping an impractical method of scoring solo kills on most enemy heroes now and a rather useless tactic against tank heroes. That does not mean sap is a bad ability, rather it is more of an attrition spell now in that it gives life back to MAAR and does decent damage but not so much that building MAAR straight intelligence with the intent of getting two shot kills is practical anymore. A 25% damage nerf might not sound like a ton when it comes to SAP but that 25% is the difference between a double sap killing a squishy agi hero with lots of lifesteal and letting him live to get all his life back while your orb cooldowns reset.

 

Secondly, destroyer aura was significantly nerfed in that it no longer does true damage, rather it does spell damage. Destroyer aura of course now does more spell damage (80 base spell damage now relative to 45 base true damage), however, when fighting against tanky heroes that had lots of spell resist such as Mandrake, you could count on Destroyer aura to wear them down over time. Now unfortunately for MAAR players even thoug the amount of base damage for destroyer aura has been almost doubled, the fact that the damage is spell damage rather than true damage means this aura is not very useful in the later stages of the game except for pushing creep waves.

 

Third, there were some other minor buffs to frost wave in terms of its scaling as well as minor damage nerfs to heat wave and heat wave plus as well as doubling in the base healing of creator aura (which is nice, but this is not an aura you use in battle anyways as the healing is negligible compared to the DPS shelled out by enemy heroes). And of course the fact auras don't last as long anymore is a bit annoying but manageable.

 

But lastly there was a huge buff to savior aura. This aura was very strong in 1.47 with applying a 17% spell and physical resist debuff to enemy heroes, but now at 30% it is super strong however it is a useless aura if you go for a pure intelligence build for MAAR because you need to be on the front lines for the aura to be effective to your team and if you are squishy, even with a 30% damage debuff you will still die from focus fire.

 

So the question begs, now that sap has been nerfed how do you deal critical damage to an enemy hero and how do you make use of the huge boost to savior aura? Well first off, with around 400 intelligence you do about as much damage with heat wave plus as you do with sap (around 600 damage each) and you deal a little less damage with frost wave and heat wave (around 500 each). However, if you combo all of these together you do about 2200 spell damage in a short period of time, but the question begs how do you do this?

 

First of all you are going to need an impact dial and then you execute the following combo at a target hero:

 

(1) Get in maximum range of heat wave plus with two red orbs so that thanks to despair the enemy hero will not see you launching your fireball and it will explode on impact.

 

(2) After firing off heat wave plus at the target hero charge two blue orbs as you proceed in a vector towards the hero you are attacking and then cast frost wave (despair will have it so they probably won't see what you are doing until it channels).

 

(3) As you are channeling frost wave you impact dial yourself forward to get closer to the enemy hero and once frost wave finishes casting you immediately cast one red orb and fire off a heat wave while the enemy hero is still slowed from frost wave. If you try and use heat wave plus instead which takes twice as long to cast due to you needing two orbs, the combo won't work as the enemy hero will have ample time to run away from the fireball as the effects of frost wave will have gone away.

 

(4) After firing a heat wave at the intended target, you double orb (hit W and E at same time) and cast a sap to complete the combo.

 

If you have nitrogen refit nailing this combo is even easier.

 

Now of course some people may be thinking that why execute this combo with only 400 intelligence or so when you could easily have a build that has 700-800 intelligence on MAAR and do considerably more damage? Well the reason is that since you are pursuing the enemy at close range, there will obviously be blowback from the enemy hero you are attacking, not to mention any allies that enemy hero has lurking around. If you are not tanky you won't be able to sustain enough damage to complete this combo and will have to resort to the typical sap and heat wave plus and frost wave spamming of pure int MAAR builds. This is bad because pure int MAAR is no longer as strong as before (pure int MAAR was even a new user build in 1.47 that only worked against idiot players who refused to buy a taser or stun baton or get any spell resist), as well as the fact that savior aura is so strong now.

 

So how do you make MAAR a super annoying anti-AA hero? Well simply get around 4k health and stack armor with barbed plating and keep savior aura up in any combat situation where you don't have the big advantage (i.e. sometimes using destroyer aura makes more sense, but usually you want savior aura on). Simple as that really.

 

So what build will accomplish 400 intelligence, 4k health, 45 armor, and have you tanking with the best tanks in the game?

 

(1) Superheated Mantle

(2) Impact Dial

(3) Barbed Plating

(4) Nitrogen Refit

(5) Ihan Crystal

(6) Organic Carapace

(7) Sell ihan crystal and buy argus crystal

 

Due to how squishy heroes are now with the new talent system in 1.48, it is important to ramp up that armor on MAAR asap so your first 3 items will give you 21 armor rather early in the game. You will still take spell damage but avoiding caster damage is not hard to do with impact dial handy, as well as the fact that your raw health and sap ability will allow you to soak combo damage from many casters in the game and allow you to counterattack them and kill them due to casters usually being pretty squishy themselves. However, if Shadow jumps on you, you have no recourse unless you have lots of physical resist and barbed plating to hurt him. Later on in the game some Shadow players will have a ton of lifesteal, but by then you will be even tankier and if your allies can't kill a shadow player attacking you for 30 seconds straight with your 4k health, 45 armor, and 30% physical and spell resist from savior aura sustaining you, then you might as well start using your ultimate to warp your team into the enemy team's pool for fun.

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Why is this in balance debates, when you aren't claiming op/up? Also, what is your solution to smaller mana pool, as well as energy capsule, energize and orb cost nerf? Cause they way I see it, even with int talent builds, you bleed out of mana very soon, and without teleporters for many trips back and forth, you are kinda screwed.......

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That sounds good in theory, but you die in seconds without any defense (except more health) to a hero built on crit...or just a Nova.

 

I am confused here. You realize that a nova that attacks you with this gear and savior aura will kill herself almost instantly from barbed plating if she does not have 2-3 lifesteal items on her right? Even then with 45 armor and a 30% physical resist debuff you are taking very little physical damage which is what is fed back to her for her lifesteal. In other words, she hurts herself almost as much as she hurts you, yet you have 2x the health.

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I am confused here. You realize that a nova that attacks you with this gear and savior aura will kill herself almost instantly from barbed plating if she does not have 2-3 lifesteal items on her right? Even then with 45 armor and a 30% physical resist debuff you are taking very little physical damage which is what is fed back to her for her lifesteal. In other words, she hurts herself almost as much as she hurts you, yet you have 2x the health.

You haven't realized that Crits are True Damage and go unhindered through Armor, Resist and Barbed passiv?

That is exactly the reason why crits are so OP!

 

I hope HotS comes out very soon and let developers switch crits to Physical Damage again...

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You haven't realized that Crits are True Damage and go unhindered through Armor, Resist and Barbed passiv?

That is exactly the reason why crits are so OP!

 

I hope HotS comes out very soon and let developers switch crits to Physical Damage again...

 

Yah I know that but in spite of the crits, a nova will still have a bunch of her AA damage fed back to her from barbed and she will be getting very little back from lifesteal and it is not like you won't be using your skills on her at all. When going tank MAAR even with the 17% savior aura from 1.47, I have never had any problem dealing with a Nova alone. Focus fire from 5 heroes at once will obviously knock you down, but 1v1 savior aura makes you as well as your allies very hard to kill, just that to use it effectively you need to put yourself at risk since the way it works is that you need to cover the enemies with the aura rather than your own teammates as it is a damage debuff to the enemy heroes.

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