Our complete Stitches guide has everything you need to know about playing this Hero, with the latest builds, tips, map advice and counters.
If you enjoy being a real pain in the backside to the enemy team (and you're not interested in playing Li Li...) you'll have a lot of fun with Stitches. He's got a decent chunk of health that can be empowered with rapid health regeneration, he can dish out damage to a group of enemies just by being hit, and he's got a wicked hookshot that can drag a victim right towards where they really don't want to be if that's OK with everyone.
While that sounds like a lot of fun - and it certainly is in action - you should be aware that this Hero comes with some important caveats. For a start, he has no escape options for the majority of a match, and if you're cackhanded with the Hook then you'll eliminate much of his utiltiy value. You also really need a team that knows what it's doing to get the most out of his potential to frustrate the other side as well.
Stitches strategy guide and overview - January 2016
You should be able to hold your own in a lane all by yourself during the early game. Slam's great for damaging multiple minions, while Devour can be used against any enemy type to keep your health topped up. Don't be afraid to use that devilish Hook to pull a foolish enemy Hero into the range of your towers as well. You have lots of tools to harass and prevent the enemy from doing their thing, so make sure you use them.
Onto team combat next. If you take Putrid Bile, as we recommend in our talent build this month, try to drop it in the path the enemy most wants to travel along. Otherwise just carrry on using Slam and Devour off their cooldowns to keep the damge rolling. Your signature Ability, however, is Hook and you need to make sure you're getting maximum value from it. Use it in a team fight to kill a healer or DPS quickly, and so put the brawl odds in your favour, or just pull a straggler to their certain doom. Check out our tips section further down the page for more advice on using this core Ability.
The best Stitches talent build - January 2016
This is a pretty standard and reliable Stitches build that you'll find referenced quite a bit in the current metagame. It plays into and enhances all of the character's core strengths, but you need to make sure you grab all of those Regeneration Globes for some insane health pool/regen over time - particularly in the late-game.
Stitches standard build
Level 1 - Hungry for More - Collecting Regeneration Globes permanently increases your maximum Health by 30.
Level 4 - Amplified Healing - Increases regeneration effects and all healing received by 30%.
Level 7 - Tenderizer - Basic Attacks slow enemy Movement Speed by 25% for 1.5 seconds.
Level 10 - Putrid Bile - Emit bile that deals 82 (39 + 4% per level) damage per second to enemies within, slowing them by 35%. You gain 20% Movement Speed while emitting bile. Lasts 8 seconds. Mana: 75, Cooldown: 60 seconds.
Level 13 - Relentless - Reduces the duration of silences, stuns, slows, and roots against your Hero by 50%.
Level 16 - Fishing Hook - Hook has an additional 40% range.
Level 20 - Hardened Shield - Activate to reduce damage taken by 75% for 4 seconds.
Stitches Abilities, Heroic Abilities and Traits - January 2016
It'll take time and a lot of practice before you can pull off that amazing Hook skillshot every time, and do so quickly in the heat of battle and by targeting the most strategically important victim. It's worth spending a bit of time looking under the hood of Stitches' other Abilities too, so have a look through our quick overview of his core skills.
Hook (Q)- Pull the first enemy hit towards you, temporarily stunning them and dealing 200 (95 + 4% per level) damage. Mana: 75, Cooldown: 16 seconds.
Slam (W)- Deal 211 (100 + 4% per level) damage to enemies within the target area. Mana: 40, Cooldown: 8 seconds.
Devour (E)- Deal 699 (332 + 4% per level) damage to Minions or 250 (119 + 4% per level) damage to Heroes. Restores 19.92% of your maximum Health. Mana: 55, Cooldown: 20 seconds.
Putrid Bile (R)- Emit bile that deals 82 (39 + 4% per level) damage per second to enemies within, slowing them by 35%. You gain 20% Movement Speed while emitting bile. Lasts 8 seconds. Mana: 75, Cooldown: 60 seconds.
Gorge (R)- Consume an enemy Hero, trapping them for 4 seconds. When Gorge ends, the enemy Hero takes 601 (285 + 4% per level) damage. The trapped Hero cannot move or act and doesn't take damage from other sources. Cannot be used on massive Heroes. Mana: 80, Cooldown: 80 seconds.
Vile Gas- When damaged, Stitches emits a gas cloud that persists for 4 seconds. Enemies who enter it are poisoned for 40 (19 + 4% per level) damage per second for 3 seconds.
Stitches counters and match-ups - January 2016
If you want an overview of which Heroes are currently considered good and bad match-ups for Stitches, try a community-curated list like the one you'll find over at HeroesCounters. Here's how the top five look in each category, correct at the time of publishing this article.
- Strong against- Sgt Hammer, Lt Morales, Jaina, Azmodan, Nova
- Weak against- Leoric, Kharazim, ETC, Anub'arak, The Butcher
- Teams well with- Tyrande, Uther, Malfurion, Nazeebo, Jaina
Stitches tips - January 2016
Stitches' Hook really is the signature Ability that can turn the tides of battle in your favour, particularly as the game wears on and Hero deaths can cause a team to fall even further behind. Here are some tips you should find useful when starting out with this meaty character.
- Mastering the use of Hook is your first priority when playing Stitches - you can and you will miss at first. Use it to pull enemies within range of your team or your towers, but just make sure you don't drop an enemy right on top of a teammate who's low on health, and trying desperately to escape!
- Your skill with Hook counts for even more in the late-game, where locking out Heroes gives you greater opportunity to obliterate the Core. Spend a bit of time in bot matches perfecting the use of this Ability.
- Try to get between your target and the destination they're heading to before dropping Putrid Bile. This will slow them down if they're heading for safety, or hold them back if they're heading towards your squishier allies.
- Vile Gas is triggered automatically whenever you get hit, so don't be afraid to throw yourself right into the thick of a team fight before retreating to a better position. You'll infect everyone nearby and do some damage over time while you concentrate your attacks elsewhere.
- After Level 10, you have enough health and health regen to obliterate Mercenary Camps, so make sure you pick these up if the team can handle the rest of the fight in your absence - or if the bulk of the enemy team is waiting to respawn.
Fightin' Cowboy's videos helped us out a huge amount while we were learning the game. The builds have changed with balance patches and shifting metagames, but the broad principles remain the same.
More great HotS guides: