Lilith by Murraythehuman

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By: Murraythehuman
Last Updated: Sep 14, 2023
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Mother of Sanctuary

An aggressive single-target melee assassin who prepares heroes for blood sacrifice.

Lilith is a hero of both subtlety and cruelty. She can hound a foe endlessly, chipping down at their health, before creating a gap at a moment's notice. In addition, her E ability, Blood Ritual, allows her to prep an enemy for high damage, which also sustains Lilith's health.

  • Single target damage
  • Low cooldowns
  • Burst damage mitigation
  • Short range
  • Telegraphed abilities
  • Situational mobility

Attack Type: Melee (lunge)
Attack Speed: 1.15
Attack Range: 1.25 (2.5)

Attack Damage: 99
Health: 1968
Health Regen: 4.1015

Resource: None (Subject to change.)

This hero concept was a bottom-up design. Initially starting out as just a trait and a Q ability, but quickly adding in a "Needle" mechanic that required players to set up a secondary target for potential damage. After adding in an ability that allowed the hero to survive difficult encounters and buy time, I knew I needed a very specific kind of character to fit the mold. While I considered many, the final three candidates were...
  • Lilith
  • A Vulpera (Meerah?)
  • Broodmother Shu'malis

In the end, Lilith's iconic nature and the flavor of Lilith as a "blood sacrifice" assassin played well together, with the added benefit of her Q ability being canon to her boss fight.

Combat Trait

Infernal Lunge
Lilith can basic attack enemies within twice her normal basic attack range. When basic attacking foes outside her range, she will lunge towards the target to close the gap.

Lilith has a permanent "Rehgar Mount attack". The range isn't great, but you can stick to enemies or simply dodge around the battlefield with this.

May add bonus damage to minions as a way to improve her poor waveclear.

Primary Abilities

Split Strike
Cooldown: 8 seconds.

Deal 126 damage to an adjacent enemy and stun them for .5 seconds. You and the target are pushed away from one-another.

You both move about 2.5 character distances. Using this as a peel is possible, but it's intended as a disengage/mobility tool.

This resembles a move Lilith uses in her boss fight, where she flaps her wings and leaps back, while pushing players away. The main differences are that this one is single target and stuns.
Cooldown: 9 seconds.

Activate to channel in place, gaining Unstoppable and Protected for 1 second. When the effect ends, Lilith gains a shield equal to 100% of the damage absorbed, decaying over 1.25 seconds.

The animation is simply of Lilith holding her palm out as she glows with demonic energy.

Lilith is a very aggressive hero, but this makes her extremely vulnerable. Rebuke lets her buy some time.
Blood Ritual
2 second cooldown. Cooldown starts when the move is no longer active, so it's often an 10 second cooldown.

After .25 seconds, throw an extremely long range Sacrificial Needle that bounces off walls. When the needle hits a hero it deals 66 damage and embeds into them for up to 8 seconds. While a target is embedded, a red line will be drawn between Lilith and the target.

Basic attacking or using Split Strike on the target Extracts the Needle, dealing 107 damage to the target plus an additional 77 damage for every second the hero was embedded, up to a maximum of 4 seconds. Lilith is healed for the damage dealt.

This is a much more verbose basic ability than I normally like to create, but it's one that's much more simple to understand in action. A sacrificial needle bound by blood is thrown, and it bounces around rapidly. If it misses, it is tugged back in. If it hits someone, their healthbar slowly grows a 'damage over time' indicator, though no actual DoT damage is done. If Lilith can get close enough to hit her foe, she can steal back the needle and all the energy it had been draining from them.

There is a section below describing this ability in better detail.

The hitbox on this move is quite thin, like a Hanzo arrow. Like scatter arrow, this bounces, but instead of having a fixed number of bounces, it bounces until the full length of the skillshot is reached. Unlike scatter arrow, this move does not reveal its path, so it has limited application as a scouting tool.

Heroic Abilities

Group Sacrifice
Cooldown: 30 seconds.

Activate to embed an untalented Blood Ritual needle in every nearby enemy hero. No red line is drawn between Lilith and foes hit by Group Sacrifice.

Heroes can only have one Blood Ritual needle in them at a time.

Do keep in mind these are untalented, as things would get very OP very quickly otherwise.
Daughter of Hatred
Cooldown: 80 seconds.

After 1 second, Lilith transforms into a more grotesque form, purging all damage over time effects from herself. While in this form she has 25 armor and 25% increased spell power and attack speed.

Daughter of Hatred lasts 12 seconds.

I am considering adding 50% Relentless to this heroic.

Blood Ritual's Finer Points.

The damage
Blood Ritual can deal up to 400 damage in a single hit, making it one of the strongest basic abilities in the game. However, in spite of this quality, the move is one of extreme risk versus reward, and requires planning and foresight on the part of Lilith if she wants to get much value out of it. If you just throw the ability out and hit someone, the most you can hope for is to stall an objective. The 66 damage done by the impact is pitiful.

However, basic attacking (or using Q on) a target inflicted by Blood Ritual will deal a guaranteed 107 spell damage to the target, which is also not particularly high, but for every second the player waits before landing that follow up hit, the damage increased by 77, rapidly stacking up to 107+308 damage, for a powerful coup de grâce of 415 damage! Since she also heals for the damage dealt, one could consider the value doubled! This is a lot of damage, which she is theoretically able to perform every 6.25 seconds, but only if she avoids striking the target for a full 4 seconds.

The Range
Blood Ritual is a move with incredible range and speed, albeit with a thin hitbox. And, as an ability that can rebound off walls, it can be used to hit foes in some very cheeky spots. An example of the move's range and flexibility would be the below image:

Lilith can hit foes from a very long way away, but unless she follows up, this amounts to little more than a 67 damage poke with a 10 second cooldown.

The cooldown
This ability features a very unusual mechanic in that its cooldown is technically only 2 seconds. If you miss the initial skillshot, then the cooldown is 2 seconds (plus the amount of time it took for the skillshot to resolve). If you hit a hero, but that hero avoids being hit by Lilith, then the cooldown becomes 10 seconds, leaving Lilith without her main source of sustain and burst damage. This opens up the door to some counterplay.

The main reason for balancing her like this is to reduce how much 'feast or famine' is inherent to the character, while also making sure there's some counterplay to her beyond "stay away if she hits you with the needle". Remember that Lilith has fairly low health, so the 2+ seconds wasted with her needle not being embedded in a target is time she's not preparing her next sacrifice.

The strategy (and the counterplay)
In terms of gameplan, you really want to use this strategically. This character is very aggressive, and tends to be single-target. But since this move's value is heavily tied to waiting the full 4 seconds, it's advised you don't use it on the target you intend to basic attack. To best use this move, one should think about what they want to accomplish.
  • Do you use Blood Ritual on the tank, since they usually put themselves in harms way, letting it build up while you focus on their allies?
  • Do you put it on a squishy backliner to scare them off with a scary amount of burst damage?
  • Or do you simply throw it onto your main target every time it's off cooldown for a small amount of extra sustain?

If you're hit by this move, just try to remember that Lilith can't do much to you unless she can actually get close. Her mobility relies on there being targets nearby for her to jump between, so standing out in the open is a good option. Alternatively, you can choose to get up close to her, forcing her to pop the needle early, forcing her to attack you early and preventing her from benefitting from a number of talents that proc off of using Blood Ritual at maximum power.

If you're a tough hero like Stitches or Muradin, consider standing in the way of the needle when it's in flight, to protect a more vulnerable ally.

Level 1 Talents

Extra Sustain Tier. Lilith's main form of sustain, Blood Ritual, can be a limiting mechanic. This lets her stay alive a little longer.

Q: Clean Break - Lower the cooldown of Split Strike by 1 second. Lilith gains a permanent 178 health shield that only refreshes when using Split Strike on an enemy hero.

W: Contravention - Lilith heals for 20% of the damage from heroic sources absorbed by Rebuke.

Passive: Touch of Blood - Damaging enemy heroes with basic attacks or basic abilities causes Lilith to restore 19 health over 5 seconds, stacking up to 10 times.

Level 4 Talents

A talent tier dedicated to Blood Ritual, with a focus towards rewarding Lilith for maximizing its power.

E: Great Sacrifice - Extracting a Blood Ritual needle deals 1% of the target's maximum health as bonus damage. If extracted at full power the bonus damage is increased to 5% of the target's maximum health.

E: Blood Fuelled - Lilith deals 11 damage per second to nearby enemies. Extracting a Blood Ritual needle at full power restores 10% of Lilith's maximum health over 5 seconds. While regaining health from Blood Fuelled, Blood Fuelled's damage is increased by 200%.

E: Mass Tribute - ? Quest: Extract Blood Ritual needles at full power. Reward: Each Blood Ritual needle extracted increases its damage build-up per second by 2.5. Reward: After reaching 50 bonus damage, extracting a full power Blood Ritual needle also lowers the target's armor by 15 for 2.5 seconds.

Level 7 Talents

The gap-closer talent tier is filled with mechanics designed to help Lilith move around the battlefield. Into my Clutches makes use of a mechanic not seen since The Butcher's "Unrelenting Pursuit" talent, making it so that orientation matters while your enemy is prepped for sacrifice. Through Hell is one of the talents I could see being modified to become partially baseline.

W: Channel Hatred - Lilith can move while channelling Rebuke, but at 50% reduced movement speed. While Lilith has shields from Rebuke, she gains 25% increased movement speed. Passive: Rebuke's shields last .75 seconds longer.

E: Into my Clutches - Blood Ritual slows the target by 20% if they are moving away from Lilith, and grants Lilith 20% increased movement speed as long as she is moving toward the target.

Trait (D): Through Hell - After using a basic ability, Lilith's next basic attack has 125% increased lunge distance and slows the target by 25% for 1.5 seconds.

Heroic Talents

(Detailed above)

Level 13 Talents

Lilith's post-10 talents all fall into the region of 'flex talents'. The first three open up new ways to play the character by capitalizing on unique situations.

Q: Mephisto's Contempt - Split Strike deals 125% bonus damage to foes below 50% health. Additionally, takedowns refund Split Strike's cooldown.

Q: Ravaging Wings - Increase Split Strike's stun duration by .25 seconds and cause it to deal its damage in an area around the main target, knocking back and stunning all foes hit.

E: Blood Coil - Bouncing Blood Tribute's needle off of a wall before it hits a hero increases the rate at which it reaches full power by 33%, stacking up to two bounces.

Level 16 Talents

Level 16 is very similar to 13, adding new opportunities to Lilith's gameplan. Both feature a Q talent that modifies the cooldown of Q, creating some friction between the two.

W: Blood Petal Lash - After Rebuke's channel ends, all heroes who she absorbed ability damage from take 216 damage and have their spell power reduced by 35% for 2.5 seconds.

Passive: Taste of Flesh - Every time Lilith basic attacks a hero other than her previous basic attack target the damage of her basic attacks by 20%, up to 100%. Not hitting a hero for 5 seconds resets this bonus.

R/E: Needlework - Increase the damage of the initial impact of Blood Ritual by 100%. Every time Lilith extracts a needle from a hero, her heroic ability cooldown is reduced by 2.5% for every second it had been embedded, up to 10%.

Storm Talents

Storm talents. Upgrades to her heroics aren't particularly extreme, but grant her some more power during longer fights.

R1: Complete the Ritual - After Extracting the last needle from all enemies affected by Group Sacrifice, Lilith deals 84 damage to all foes afflicted, increased by 100% for each enemy hit by the initial Group Sacrifice.

R2: Mother of Sanctuary - Lilith heals for 2% of her maximum health per second while Daughter of Hatred is active. Basic attacks against enemy heroes while Daughter of Hatred is active increases its duration by .5 seconds.

E: Revival Through Sacrifice - ? Quest: Each time Lilith extracts a full strength Blood Ritual Needle, it lowers the duration of her next death timer by 10%. All stacks of this effect are lost on death.

Active: Tribute to the Storm - Activate to instantly teleport to your Blood Tribute target. 60 second cooldown.

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