The most devastating attacks in a MOBA are the ones a team executes in unison. But that also means they’re all the trickier to pull off. After weeks of practice, one Heroes of the Storm player finally nailed a new ultra-powerful maneuver he’s calling the “Prison Bus.” Rekt.
Heroes player and YouTuber Woundar posted his feat on the HOTS subreddit yesterday, saying that he and his friend had been practicing the maneuver after they discovered a unique synergy between E.T.C. and Zeratul, a melee warrior and assassin respectively. Notice how it demolishes the entire five-person enemy team in a matter of seconds:
The action is moving so fast in Woundar’s clip that it might be hard to appreciate what he and his HOTS teammate came up with here, so let me break it down in more detail. E.T.C. and Zeratul both have immensely powerful “heroic abilities”—the ones you unlock at level 10 in-game—that immobilize their targets in different ways. Zeratul’s is called “Void Prison,” and it conjures up what looks like a giant dome of jello that freezes everything caught inside while simultaneously making it invulnerable. E.T.C.’s “Moshpit,” meanwhile, causes any enemy in the bovine warrior’s immediate vicinity to begin dancing uncontrollably.
What the two players are doing with the prison bus combo is deploying their two heroics simultaneously so they can divide the enemy team in half, then wipe out one half after the other. But the coolest part of prison bus is actually a bit more granular than that.
When E.T.C. reaches level 20 in a Heroes of the Storm match, he can now unlock a trait called “Tour Bus,” which allows him to execute his power-sliding ability while Mosh Pit is still active. This was only recently added to the warrior’s kit, and Woundar told me in an email that once he saw the new trait he got the idea for Prison Bus.
“The idea began from trying to do a 5-man [Void Prison] into a guaranteed 5-man Mosh Pit,” Woundar wrote. “Once Tour Bus was introduced we figured out a better version of the combo, and while it’s a little bit trickier to execute, it’s usually not a problem to setup. The problem now was that we needed to kill the first Mosh Pit targets before it expired so that E.T.C. had time to continue Tour Bus-ing into the [Void Prison].”
Nailing the proper timing was everything.
“Tour Bus extends Mosh Pit’s duration by 2 seconds,” he continued, “but sometimes it’s just not enough if you don’t have good AoE damage. In the footage presented we managed to snipe the enemy Jaina before pulling it off, which in my opinion was the key part of landing it.”
Woundar is high-ranked Heroes of the Storm player—currently Rank 1, which is the highest Hero League rank one can achieve in the game. So while he was able to pull the combo off against lesser Heroes players, landing it against other skilled opponents was where the challenge came in.
“As you may imagine this worked great against lower rated players, but failed miserably against better players,” Woundar wrote. “They would either bolt out in time during the small cast animation of Mosh Pit or Void Prison would be really hard to land on 5 people to begin with, since at higher levels of play people take positioning to a whole new level. Another problem we had was very good Brightwing players; they would rapidly realize what’s going on and they would Blink Heal to a nearby minion and immediately Polymorph E.T.C. out of his Mosh Pit.”
Discoveries like Woundar’s are a big part of what makes Heroes of the Storm a fun and exciting game to play right now. While established rivals like League of Legends and Dota 2 have vastly larger character bases and more finely-tuned meta games, Heroes has an element of novelty and excitement that’s hard to resist. Players are constantly tinkering with the game and their favorite characters to see what new and even-more-devastating combinations they can come up with. I doubt that Woundar will be the last player to find something neat in all this explosive chemistry.