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Vulture Hero Guide by Maigoh

The vulture is a good farming, laning, and ganking hero. It’s not a good tank or a particularly good support but it is versatile and very deadly. Probably the best thing about vulture is that it can outrun anything it can’t kill.

Stats:
Health: 250
Energy: 100
Damage: 19
Attack speed: 1.6
Range: 5
Targets: Ground
DPS: 11.875
Armour: 1
Move speed: 3

Skills:
Q: Spider Mines
Active:
Allows the vulture hero to create spider mines. Spider mines are immobile burrowed units that automatically unburrow and attack enemy ground units within a range of 3. Spider mines suicide upon attack and deal 36 (+3.6 per level) splash damage in a radius of 3. Hero as well receive 50% of the regular damage. The hero requires a spider mine charge to use this ability and can carry up to 3 charges.

Upon reaching level 2 spider nest the vulture hero can use Cerberus mine, which deal 42 (+4.2 per level) splash damage versus ground in a radius of 1.5. Hero as well receive 50% of the regular damage.

The vulture hero can also use Agraulos mine, which deal 30 (+3.0 per level) splash damage versus air in a radius of 3. Hero as well receive 50% of the regular damage.
Range 3.

Level 1: 40 energy cost, hero gains 1 charge every 16 seconds.
Level 2: 30 energy cost, hero gains 1 charge every 12 seconds.
Level 3: 20 energy cost, hero gains 1 charge every 8 seconds.

W: Vulture Jump
Active:
Allows the vulture hero to jump into the air and land at target location. All enemy units in the path of the jump take damage equal to the vulture hero’s attack damage.
Range: 9

Level 1: 40 energy cost and 10 second cooldown.
Level 2: 30 energy cost and 7 second cooldown.
Level 3: 20 energy cost and 5 second cooldown.

E: Fragmentation Grenades
Passive:
Gives the vulture hero a small chance to fire two fragmentation grenades instead of one for each attack.

Level 1: 12.5% chance to fire two fragmentation grenades.
Level 2: 25% chance to fire two fragmentation grenades.
Level 3: 37.5% chance to fire two fragmentation grenades.

R: Ion Thrusters
Passive:
Increases the vulture hero’s movement speed.

Level 1: +20% movement speed.
Level 2: +40% movement speed.
Level 3: +60% movement speed.

T: Spider Nest
Active:
Allows the vulture to increase its mine technology.
Range: 3

Level 1: 100 energy cost and 80 second cooldown. The vulture hero can plant 3 nests.
Level 2: 80 energy cost and 60 second cooldown. The vulture hero can plant 5 nests.

Analysis of skills:

Q: I haven’t found a good use for this thing other than to defend against potential backdoors. You could probably use this to do an extra bit of farming whenever you cross a lane but I don’t know if it’s worth the energy or the hassle.

W: Identical to the nydus worm’s leap (but with the benefit that the vulture jumps faster than the nydus worm leaps), this is a great mobility skill that can get you out of tight spots, and is great for creep clear.

E: This is a pretty good way of increasing your DPS but it’s dependent on luck which isn’t the greatest. If you decide to attack the enemy hero in your lane, this is a great skill to get since the added damage will be a surprise and will help you get the kill.

R: A simple bread-and-butter movement skill.

T: Spider nests are the best method that vulture has to farm. You can drop them in a critter location or in a lane and watch the minerals roll in. If you farm 5 critter spots, that’s 150 minerals every 30 seconds which means you get a stat up every minute. That will put you way ahead in the stat race and allow you to secure the win.

Skill order:

Crittering: R, W, R, W, R, W, T. Stop crittering after 7.
Terran: R, W/E, W/E, R, R, W, T, W/E, W/E, E, Q, Q, Q, T
Protoss: R, E, R, E, R, E, T, W, W, W, Q, Q, Q, T
Zerg: W, R, W, R, R, W, T, E, E, E, Q, Q, Q, T

Laning counterparts:

Strong against:
Anything with 5 or less range and slower than you, which is probably at least half of the heroes. Even some heroes that have 6 range can be beaten easily, like ghost or void ray.

Weak against:
Colossus, medic, warhound.

Gameplay:

Crittering:
Vulture is an amazing critter hero as long as you get the small critters. Don’t bother with the big critter, it really isn’t worth your time.

At level 0, it will take you 5 hits to kill a critter. That means that on desert, you can kill 1 critter from the farthest top/bottom patch before they are in range of the towers. Do it to get 10 minerals. With the others, wait until the towers have landed 3 (or 4 I don’t really know which) hits, then attack the critter for the last hit. This part is all about timing, but if you do it right, you can get the minerals for every critter. There is no hero that can beat that. At level 1, it will only take you 4 hits to kill a critter, so use that to kill one of the three critters before they’re in range of the towers to make sure you get those minerals.

You could probably keep doing this until you hit level 7 and can drop a spider nest, but to be honest I’m pretty lazy. So at 225 minerals, I go and grab 3 bunkers, then bring them back to the critters. Set them up 7 spaces from one of the patches, then hang around there. After those critters spawn and are killed, go to the other patch and drag them to your bunkers. This absolutely guarantees you 60 minerals every 30 seconds which will put you at a big advantage.

Stop after you hit level 7. Drop a spider nest in whichever spot doesn’t have the bunkers, then go join a lane.

Farming:
Keep an eye on your T countdown timer. As soon as it nears zero, port back and replenish your energy, then go drop another spider nest. You want to get all 3 farms going as fast as possible. Put them in the spot that doesn’t have your bunkers so that you are getting 120 minerals every 30 seconds.

When you hit level 14, set up your last two spider nests as fast as you can, and don’t be afraid to do it on the enemy’s side. There is a risk that they will kill your nest and set you back a bit, but the extra minerals is worth that risk.

If you’re feeling extra aggressive, you can drop the spider mines in the enemy territory on their lanes so that your nests will kill enemy creep automatically. Be careful with this one because you can actually xp deny your team pretty badly if you’re too successful at this.

Early game:
You can play this two ways. Against terran and zerg, you can use W to kill zerglings and marines. Zerglings can be killed at level 1 if you manage to catch them both when taking off and landing, but you won’t be able to kill roaches or hydras for a long while. Getting more levels of W decreases the energy cost so it is worth it to get. Marines have to wait until your hero is level 2 before you can jump around and kill them. The good news is that marines don’t move around after you jump since they will still be shooting at you, so it’s easier to target them for the kill. Against protoss, don’t bother getting jump for a while unless it is for mobility, such as when facing heroes with good CC such as preserver or sentry.

Against all races, you can rush R and E to start wearing down the enemy heroes. The vulture has one of the highest damage per shot of the game (I know reaver for sure is higher but I don’t know what else compares) which means that you should dart in, shoot the enemy hero, and then speed out of their range while you wait for the 1.6 seconds before you can dart in and shoot again. Done properly, this will allow you to kill almost any hero. Once the enemy hero is in the red, just chase them until they die. Vision will help you to target them.

Get weapons ASAP. The stronger your attack, the faster the enemy dies. Psi emitter can help in your chase but you’ll most likely be faster than anything you’re facing (except another vulture or maybe a reaper).

Items: Port, Psi Emitter, Attack Speed, Vision, +2%
Weapons: 1-3
Armour: 0
Energy: 0

Mid game:
Use jump like crazy to farm, farm, and farm some more. Make sure your spider nests are alive and that they are actually killing critters. Sometimes the critters can wander out of the range of the nests, so just scan them once in a while.

Once you start to upgrade your armour, you can jump around with impunity and not worry about getting damaged. Tailor your weapons upgrades with your level so that you can kill the creeps the most efficiently.

Now is also a good time to grab lockdown and run around the map ganking things.

Items: Port, Psi Emitter, Lockdown, Attack Speed, Regen
Weapons: 3-5
Armour: 2-4
Energy: 1-3

Late game:
Farm as many critters as you can. Buy afterburners for your team. This will free up an item slot for you which is absolutely key. You should have so much firepower that you can 3-shot squishy heroes and make a serious dent for teamfights. Bring lockdown so you can support your team, but you probably don’t have enough energy for both multiple lockdowns and defensive matrix until you have lots of stats.

Keep jumping into creep to get all the kills, and bring devastator missles so you can finish off the air creep after jumping through them once. This will allow you to kill the enemy creep insanely quickly, faster than any other hero with the exception of a zergling with glaive.

If you are getting backdoored, drop your items and grab air strike. Then sit at your base, autocast Q, and drop a ton of spider mines where the backdooring hero is most likely to go. Use air strike to continue to kill enemy creep while you’re sitting at home base setting up the mines. If you have a lot of stats and 10-15 mines at your base entrances (or on the cliff), you’re pretty much set. Any hero that comes in to backdoor is in for a nasty surprise.

At level 20 you should be able to join a teamfight, focus down a hero, and then go kill a building as you please. Keep farming creep waves so you can stay ahead of the stat curve, but have fun hunting down enemy heroes. If there are no heroes that can outrun you, you can drop the speed item for extra killing power.

Items: Attack Speed, Lockdown, Devastator Missiles, Sensor Towers/Move Speed/Air Strike/Psi Emitter

Specific things:

Colossus:
This is probably your biggest threat mid-game. Colossus can trap you in his little pyramid, and with his piercing attack, you can’t even get close enough to land a hit. Try and jump away as soon as you can but you are pretty much dead if the colossus is any good. The best way to approach colossus is try to jump right before he places the pyramid. It’s sometimes a little tricky to predict but the reward is very much worth the risk.

Air units:
Don’t bother trying to kill them mid game. However, once you have devastator missiles in the late game, just follow them until they die. If they go over some raised terrain, use jump to keep up with them. With the exception of carrier, no air hero poses a threat to you. Add jump to kill overlords since they are a bit tankier than the others.

Against carrier (this is probably my favourite thing about vulture), use lockdown, wait for the interceptors to return to the carrier, then jump through it. Do this again as soon as your lockdown is available, and you’ll have killed all the interceptors. The carrier will now flee for home and you can follow it around as listed above and let the devastator missiles do their job.

Medic:
Don’t lane against it in the early game. It will tear you apart with irradiate, which has a better range than your autoattack. It’s just not worth it. Wait until the later game when you have more armour, and it won’t be able to touch you.

Warhound:
Try not to lane against it until you have more creep around you to soak up the missiles. This usually means the 10 minute mark or so, when the tanks come out.

Recap:

Basic gameplan goes like this: Kill heroes or farm creep. Set up farms. Gank some more and farm some more creep. Win team fights. Win.

How to play against vulture:

Kill its farms. You will lose if you don’t. Thankfully the vulture must wait 60 seconds between creating nests, so you can slow it down somewhat. Also make sure that the vulture doesn’t have spider nests in the lanes. In the laning phase, if you outrange the vulture, target it as it comes towards you to shoot it. At the very least that will discourage it from harassing you so much. If the vulture outranges you and you don’t have any good creep clearing spells, switch lanes.

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