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Raynor Build: Squad Smasher

by - 2 years ago

Jim Raynor is the main character in the Starcraft universe and is known for being a born leader. In Heroes of the Storm his biggest asset to the team is large amounts of self sustain and raw damage especially to high health warriors. Playing Raynor takes some getting used to if you’re not much of an auto attacker and tend to rely on your abilities to impact the fight. Luckily BlizzPro is here to help you with a build and a strategy. If you want to check out the basics of Raynor head over to the BlizzPro hero page which can be found here.


Advanced Optics – (Passive Trait) This is what it is and you probably wont notice Advanced Optics unless you’re switching back and forth between Raynor and other basic attack heroes often. Just keep in mind you attack and see farther than other heroes and that can always be leveraged for an advantage especially in 1v1 duels.

Penetrating Round – (Q) This ability is especially useful in the early game for backing enemies away and keeping them at max range. It also can save Raynor’s bacon in a pinch when trying to escape someone chasing Raynor for a kill. In the late game it also becomes a big source of damage along with a stun because of the level 16 talent pick. Just be careful to not push an enemy away that would have otherwise died during team fights.

Inspire – (W) This is a great steroid for your teammates and lane minions as there is no cap on how many allies Inspire can affect. Once at level 7  it will also give Raynor a speed boost which can be extremely helpful for chasing down and escaping. Don’t forget to pop this while dueling 1v1 or shoving down a lane to enjoy the extra attack speed.

Adrenaline Rush – It’s a strong passive heal that works by itself. Not much to say except make sure you know when this is off/on cool down and adjust your strategy accordingly.

Heroic Abilities

Hyperion – The superior choice in heroic abilities in my opinion because of the damage and area control it provides. It can also help massively during a lane push taking place under enemy towers and/or forts. This is a very effective ability in team fights that is hard to pass up because of the glaring weakness of Raynor’s other ultimate.

Raynor’s Raiders – This can be a fun ultimate that will punish squishy characters or targets that think they have gotten away. The main problem with Raiders is at the higher levels of play it really drops off. A good player will identify what ultimate Raynor took and inform his team to watch out for Raiders and focus them out immediately since they die rather quickly when focused. I really will only take this skill if I feel I can get away with it or I know I will need them to deal with a Lt. Morales or Ravenous Spirit Nazeebo.

The Build

Level 1

Seasoned Marksman – This build is based around having strong auto attacks and Seasoned Marksman is great for that. Just build the stacks and see the payoff as the game goes on. If you’re on a map that isn’t going to allow a lot of minion farming(Eternal Conflict, Blackhearts Bay) or you think Raynor will need the extra sustain then Give Me More is a perfect valid level 1 talent choice.

Level 4

Focused Attack – This is an amazing ability for auto attacking which Raynor does a lot of. No real other choice at this level.

Level 7

Revolution Overdrive -The extra movement speed is huge for Raynor and when used properly can make him very difficult to chase down. This talent pick will often provide you with supreme mobility during team fights and the ability to chase down targets that otherwise would have escaped. The other talents are very lack luster and this level which means I take Revolution Overdrive every time.

Level 10

Hyperion – see heroic abilities section

Level 13

Giant Killer – This just kill’s enemies especially warriors. Make your autos way stronger and move on because nothing comes close to Giant Killer at level 13.

Level 16

Bullseye – Is a great talent to pick here because Penetrating Round is an easier to land skill shot with a relatively low cooldown and mana cost. Adding a stun to Penetrating Round just makes it that much more useful in fights. Again not many other choices at this level since I feel like Berserk and Executioner is overkill at this point and the utility of a stun is needed more.

Level 20

Nexus Frenzy – This gives Raynor godly range and attack speed making him able to quickly burst down his focused targets during the late stages of the game. You can also consider Bolt of the Storm at this level but I don’t feel Raynor is a hero that really needs it but if Raynor is being focused first by the enemy it may be needed.

The Strategy

In the early game Raynor gets to be a bit of a bully due to his high damage, self sustain, and low mana consumption. Just look to keep opponents at max range and look to harass. As always don’t over commit to pushing when it’s dangerous especially if you can’t see all the enemies on the mini map. Just make sure to pay attention to the map, the objectives, soak experience, and most important don’t die.

In the mid to late game the strategy is different for every map but mainly you just want to be present for team fights. Make the enemies respect your presence in fights by putting out strong focused damage while remaining fluid and hard to pin down. This can be accomplished by watch the enemy teams movement as a group and reacting by putting focused damage on the safest target from max range. Raynor is one of the few heroes, especially at 13, who can put very real and meaningful auto attack damage on high health  defensive warriors, like Johanna or Muradin, so don’t be afraid to focus your fire there if that’s all that is safe. Remember to inspire your team and take advantage of the increased mobility so that you can move in and out while putting damage on priority targets.

Raynor is not an overly difficult character to understand but can actually take quite a bit of practice to master. The best thing about Raynor is that he is a welcome addition to any map or team composition so you will always be needed when you’re a good Raynor. I hope you were able to learn something about Raynor and as always feel free to leave comments and feedback below. Check back next week for another guide from BlizzPro!

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I'm a long time fan of Blizzard games. I focus mainly on WoW, Hearthstone, and Heroes of the Storm.