Despite being slow-moving and easy to read, the Maul can deliver crushing wide-swinging attacks that can sweep units out of existence in just a few strikes. Against other heroes, the Maul is easily outmanoeuvred and evaded, but when one strike hits home, you can be sure it will be followed by another, a flurry against which few will be able to muster much of a defence.
Introduced to the game in Season III, the Maul was for a time the only weapon class that needed to be unlocked before it can be utilised. It can still be unlocked by going to the Seasonal Screen (press F5) and selecting Season III Unit Challenges or can be unlocked at level 20 via the Skills tab of the Character interface (P).
Even with heavy armour, a Maul-wielding warlord is something of a soft target due to their ponderous movement. It’s simply the case that almost every other hero will be able to hit and run faster. To offset this, most Maulers will invest the bulk of their Attribute points into Armour and Toughness, simply to maximise hit points and be able to soak up all that incoming damage.
The Maul specialises in delivering large amounts of Blunt damage, which is the damage type most heroes are ill-equipped to deal with, making it unnecessary to invest fully in increased Strength. Those that do, however, might find that the investment really pays off!
The weight of all that armour and wielding the Maul itself can have an adverse effect on a hero, with many skills using up precious Stamina if they are to be at their most punishingly effective.
- Mighty Mjölnir: The standard-issue opening strike for most Maul players, thanks to its sprint. It allows the Maul to quickly engage and then follow its shoulder charge with another attack.
- Bonebreaker: Often used as a follow up to Mighty Mjölnir, this wide-swinging strike is equally effective against heroes and clusters of tightly packed units.
- Earthsplitter: Like Bonebreaker, but with less base and more extra damage. With knockback effects, this is arguably the better skill to use against a dispersed or flighty foe.
- Up from Hel: An upward strike with a short cooldown that can remove daze effects and be doubled up to regain the initiative.
- Maelstrom: Another arcing attack, but one that can be greatly boosted by burning through Stamina to swat a path through almost enemy front line.
- Ukko’s Doom: A remarkably similar skill to Up from Hel and seemingly less damaging, but it’s the speed of the strike that sets it apart - the enemy won’t see it coming.
Two quite different ultimate skills define the Maul. One characterises the sheer energy that can be channelled through the weapon. The other the strength of its wielder to be able to snatch an enemy from the front line.
- Forge of War: An absolute beast of a skill that delivers vast Blunt damage, but that any forward-facing hero will be able to see coming from a mile away. Used in amongst a tightly packed unit, you can be sure most of the enemy won’t be getting back up.
- Strike and Grapple: The signature skill of the Maul is one that allows them to knock out an enemy, pick them up and carry them across the battlefield, likely to be surrounded set upon by allies. A skill that is loved by Mauls and hated by everyone else.
Created specially to benefit Maul players is the Hammer of the Gods armour set, which with two items equipped reduces Mighty Mjolnir cooldown and with four reduces the Stamina cost of charging skills. If you prefer to take on a more versatile tanking role, the Guardsman’s armour set offers a health boost with two items equipped and gives an all-round defence boost with four items equipped.