HoN Gladiator Hero Guide


The Gladiator is a new melee Strength hero in Heroes of Newerth version 1.0.5 equivalent to Kunkka the Admiral in Dota.  The Gladiator has a sword and a whip, uses spike traps and other tricks in the arena, and even calls in a chariot to aid him in battle.  Here is an overview of his skills:

Pitfall (q)

Pitfall unleashes a spike trap that impales enemy units after a two second delay, stunning and damaging them, and tossing them into the air.  Because of the delay this can be an easy spell to miss.  Try to cast it the same way you use Deadwood’s Rotten Grasp: on heroes that are standing still to last hit a creep, or running along a predictable path.  Later in the game you can use Pitfall in combination with Showdown to catch heroes in the trap more reliably.  Pitfall is also a great way to set up Gladiator’s ultimate by stunning an area right before the chariot comes in.

Showdown (w)

Showdown marks a unit and calls it back to that spot after several seconds.  This is a good spell to stop fleeing heroes from escaping.  You can also call the unit back sooner at any time before the max duration by hitting Showdown again.  This is a good way to land a guaranteed Pitfall stun on a hero by calling it back right before the spikes go off.

Showdown can also be used on allied units or your own hero.  This is less useful but could get you out of certain situations or save an ally.  For the most part you just want to use Showdown to set up stuns or prevent enemy heroes from escaping battle, especially if they are using a Homecoming Stone (Teleport Scroll) or have an a blink ability or Portal Key that would otherwise get them to safety.

Flagellation (passive)

The Gladiator uses his whip to deal a 500 AOE splash damage attack on his next attack as much as every four seconds.  It also adds bonus damage to his attack.  Think of the ability as something like a melee version of Puppet Master’s splash damage attack or Jeraziah’s passive without the slowing effect.  This is a phenomenal lane control ability as you get bonus damage every four seconds for last hitting, and you can constantly deal harass damage to enemy heroes in your lane without even getting near them.  You can even last hit far away creeps without getting near them by hitting a unit that is closer to you.

The whip doesn’t go off when hitting allied units (but you still have bonus damage), so you deny any number of creeps in a row without resetting the cooldown and losing the damage bonus.

Call to Arms (ultimate) (r)

Call to Arms sends in a chariot that explodes, dealing magic damage and stunning in an area.  The chariot also reduces the damage your nearby allies take for several seconds (though they take it after a delay as non-lethal damage) and increases their movement speed.

The Chariot starts 1000 units behind the Gladiator and explodes 1000 units beyond where you aim it, so make sure to aim it in front of where you want it to actually hit.  It takes a few seconds to get there so this works best if the enemy is already disabled by something like Tempest’s ultimate or Pebbles’ stun, etc.


Recommended Skill Build

  1. Flagellation (1)
  2. Pitfall (1)
  3. Flagellation (2)
  4. Pitfall (2)
  5. Flagellation (3)
  6. Call to Arms (1)
  7. Flagellation (4)
  8. Pitfall (3)
  9. Pitfall (4)
  10. Showdown (1)
  11. Call to Arms (2)
  12. Showdown (2)
  13. Showdown (3)
  14. Showdown (4)
  15. Stats
  16. Call to Arms (3)
  17. Stats -> Level 25

Early Game

Recommended Early Game items:


Sustainer + Steamboots

Early game you should focus on controlling your lane with Flagellation and try to get farmed up.  Kills should be possible around Level 5 or 6 or earlier if you are good with landing Pitfalls.  Gladiator is a great farmer, and if you are farming really easily you could consider going for a Sword of the High for an early Mock of Brilliance to really carry your team.

Mid Game

Recommended Mid Game items:


Runed Axe + Shrunken Head

Keep farming and mid game a Runed Axe is a great item to complement your Flagellation passive.  Gladiator is a scrappy hero that needs to get involved in the middle of battles and stay alive long enough to put out some damage.  Frostburn, Insanitarius, and even Frostwolf’s Skull are other workable item choices on Gladiator.

When team battles start happening it’s usually best to wait until the other team has committed to a battle before sending in your Chariot ultimate on them.  This has a much likelier chance of hitting several targets effectively and aiding your teammates than if you attempt to initiate a battle with it.

Late Game

Recommended Late Game items:


Symbol of Rage + Daemonic Breastplate

Symbol of Rage is a great item to boost your hit points, armor, and add lifesteal to your attack.  A similar alternative to this would be Abyssal Skull (especially if you got a different attack modifier like Frostburn) and Behemoth’s Heart.  Add to your attack speed and get more armor with a Daemonic Breastplate.  These items are expensive but remember that Gladiator farms very easily thanks to Flagellation and in hour-long games you should be hitting these items before the end.

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    • iFlee says:

      Straight from DotA my build is (in this order) Runed Axe, Post-Haste, Runed Axe, Warpcleft, Whispering Helm, Behemoths Heart, Deamonic Breastplate, Symbol of Rage

      so when maxed out (which isn’t hard to do)
      Post Haste
      Runed Axe
      Runed Axe
      Symbol of Rage
      Daemonic Breastplate
      Behemoths Heart

    • Shrap says:

      Ever heard of the build using Runed axe and Assassins Shroud? The Flagellation combined with the Assassins Shroud Crit does a broken amount of damage!

    • jack gray says:


    • Billegezicht says:

      Assasins shroud –> riftshards –> doombringer = toal win

    • isak says:

      symbol of rage is the greatest lifesteal item, it is “satanic” in DotA


    The DRD Insult Generator says:

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